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philw last won the day on January 7

philw had the most liked content!

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About philw

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  • Home Mountain/Resort?
    Ski Rossendale
  • Occupation?
    software & other stuff
  • Current Boards in your Quiver
    Kessler 156 SL
    Powder boards as available...
  • Current Boots Used?
    Atomic Backland Carbon
  • Current bindings and set-up?
    F2 Race Ti
  • Snowboarding since
  • Hardbooting since

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  1. My main motivation was convenience for flying, when switching from the HSPs to Backland Carbon boots. Plus 25 or so years of technical boot development which skiers have enjoyed. Even Mountain Slope is an old design. The "Sense" boots look interesting. I would say that the clever bit about modern Carbon boots is that they achieve similar performance at less weight; the Carbon is probably used to deliver that, rather than to deliver something you don't want (greater stiffness). Carbon is probably also more stable over a range of temperatures and stress. It's a composite so you can engineer it very precisely. Lighter boots.... feel lighter. It may be psychological, and mostly I don't notice, but when jumping my gear definitely feels lighter. Perhaps it's like "power to weight ratio" in a car. With the race bike analogy, I want the lightest machine I can get at a reasonable price. I'm not going to drill the components out, but lighter always feels better. Heavier boots... you could buy some ankle weights and strap a kilo on each ankle to see the benefits of that at a cheap price today. Metal boards actually use metal and rubber for their dampening effect, it's not specifically mass which is the issue.
  2. I did not need springs with the backlands, but I did need their increased forward lean as the standard levers (with that 7cm) was not sufficient for my rear boot. I think the Phantom levers will accommodate a range of lengths there as you can see from the design.
  3. The orange aluminium standard lever on the backland has a centre-to-centre distance of 7cm (distance from the centre of the pivot to the centre of the recess which clips over the bar on the boot.
  4. I have a Rylo - see videos elsewhere for examples. I find the Rylo (or GoPro Max) is a better than a traditional POV camera as the stabilization is better and you don't need to aim the camera at all. It's easier to use a 360 camera, although you have more editing to do. Less to do whilst riding, more to do later. I actually got some useful feedback from someone on here (viz: try a different rear foot angle), so there's your evidence that the basic idea works. Carrying a pole does affect your riding, however. You need a fairly quiet upper body, which is fine if that's your style but maybe not so much if it isn't. You can video other people, and again 360 is easier than a directional camera because you can't miss the shot, although you have to be very close... this shot shows Ken (Orange) trying to video me (front, yellow) the other day. He may look far away, but these are very wide lenses and he's uncomfortably close. You need to be on it to ride that close safely. You can however see probably that my mate Jim in the back is in the back seat, although he already knows that and doesn't care. Ken's using a GoPro Max someone lent him - he stopped using his traditional GoPro 8 as soon as he realized what you can do with 360. It's worth pointing out that the video quality from traditional 180 GoPro cameras is vastly better than the 360 cameras. That's where the trade off is. I miss the 4K ProTune quality, with the Rylo being best in perfect light and at lower resolutions.
  5. I didn't really notice any difference in riding these (Atomic Backland Carbon / F2 Race Ti/ Phantom Link levers) versus my previous set up (HSP, F2 Intec). These are the Carbon boots - light, but not as light as the "ultra light" ones which I think have only one buckle - these have two buckles plus a power strap. The boots are noticeably lighter at less than half the weight of the HSP/Intec combination. I think they're stiffer (which I like). As noted elsewhere I used the Link levers because I needed more forward lean than the Atomic levers provided, not because I wanted springs. In practice I felt that I could probably easily overpower the springs so they were likely not relevant, although I've no real evidence of that. Bear in mind that in that type of snow you can ride without buckles pretty easily - it's not the same kind of test as hard pack. The boots look small and skinny, which is slightly worrying in the cold, but I had no issues at minus 10 - minus 15. I didn't bake the liners as they fit fine out of the box and my advice was baking would not improve that.
  6. I thought maybe this would go in "videos" but that's "videos of people carving" and there's not a lot of carving here, but it is "all mountain" hard booting. This is a Burton Skeleton Key 154, F2 Race Titanium bindings, Atomic Backlands with Phantom Levers.
  7. Yes, the 360 cameras (my Rylo, the GoPro Max, and probably the Insta) automagically remove the pole. They have two back-to-back lenses with about 200 degrees field of view each, so they have coverage of the bit where the pole is from two sides. You have to line the camera up with the pole, but if you do that then it just takes it out. I'm not precisely sure how they do it, but it's 100% reliable. The Avatar thing is an image from the same camera, simply zoomed out to the maximum. I think they call them "little earths" or something. It's a kind of inside-out projection of the spherical video, if you see what I mean.
  8. Well of course I think people should use whatever they like, but I've just been riding with an old mate who is a reasonable part of snowboarding history and he's hugely in favour of the Burton Step On stuff. To hear him talk about them it sounds like they're a significant step towards the control and power of hard bindings. I've no idea, but if you're into soft gear then it may be worth looking at those.
  9. Burton Skeleton Key 154, F2, Atomic Backland.
  10. I reckon that the question isn't answered unless you actually try it. These boots are stiffer than most, which is kind of why people put springs into them. In any case, Atomic make a whole range of similar boots and you can pick the stiffness you want, so even the fattest macho men should be fine. I don't know if they'll rip on my race boards, but I don't see why they would not.
  11. I think you're correct, if you're saying that it would be better to build a snowboard binding for AT boots rather than try to go the other way around. I would be gobsmacked if Phantom and possibly others in the splitboard business haven't thought of that already. Even so, it's actually quicker to use traditional clip (as opposed to Intec) in deep snow, as you don't have to bother clearing out the snow as much as with Intec. Plus I almost never stop mid run... so although step-in is nice, it's not really a big deal to have it. Phantom's split board bindings are almost good enough to use for Alpine already, I think a few small changes by them could result in something clever to work with AT boots. The catch is that they're split-focused, so they may not see the opportunity....
  12. Well who'd have thought it, I must have ridden 45 parallel for at least a decade, but after @RCrobar's suggestion, I backed off the rear foot 10 degrees so now it's 45f 35r. That worked really well. Not night and day better, but not worse. It may be psychological, but air seemed easier to land well and I'm not about to revert it. Thanks - interesting, and helpful! I think that analysis is right about cross-over etc in the skiing style. I think snowboarders generally use cross through or cross-under in powder. One advantage of helicopters is there's no "base", but that's what throws some new people, as resort powder has that feature. I'd seen the noboard vid before, and almost bought one of their boards... I'm not great at no-boarding, but I can get down pure powder runs where there's no crust or wind-blown - it's not very versatile and I'd hate it at a resort as riding surface lifts would be a nightmare. Definitely interesting to think about the style though, as it's unfettered by the complexity of bindings. Have a great xmas!
  13. Nice first set up. I try not to give anyone I meet "on the hill" advice as I'm not an expert at their technique, although some defects are obvious. It's a good point that people likely pick boards which match their abilities/ approach. I reckon there's a range of gear I find acceptable, and I adapt pretty quickly to that, but then there's other gear which I "don't like" because I can't easily make it work without bigger changes. I was thinking about the "is the technique the same or not" issue. I also asked a bunch of technically mined expert powder skiers (competent snowboarders are harder to find) over the last few days. I think that there are two approaches: some skiers use modified technique in powder (they bounce), others don't. I think I use the same technique, hence I don't change my set up. People who use a different style for each type of snow would likely need different settings. => there are multiple ways to do this and no "correct" answer. Thanks for the video analysis - that is useful as like a bunch of other people I learned before they had teachers so have little idea about what I'm doing other than I do stuff which works. As noted, the pole does f-up the style a bit although I ought to have worked it out by now. I shall muck around with the back foot a bit in a while - it's easy enough to do...
  14. Yes, I hated the mechanisms on every hard boot I've owned (Dunafit 3F Comp S, Rachlie 424, Deluxe Indy, Head SP) as they would always slip into Walk Mode now and then, and I never used "walk" mode anyway... I can drive and run and cycle and even dance in f-ing ski boots, I don't need no stinkin' walk mode. The levers lock into walk mode in a slightly different way from the Atomic levers (which rely on spring pressure), but they are solidly in there. The mechanism is a slot in a block which clips over the Atomic bar. It feels tight as it engages, which is presumably why it doesn't move. That's been solid, and nothing's moved. The actual connection to the plate in the boots has a little movement in it, but that doesn't seem to be a problem. Springs.. I suspect that I overpower these, but until I take my camera out I can't be sure. I guess I don't much care as they seem to work. If anyone has worked out how to switch the springs over, it would in be interesting to hear. I'm unlikely to look at that whilst the snow is good and the helicopters are flying. I assume the main rods screw out, but I'm thinking I'd need something to grip and rotate them if so (I have such things at home, not here). They ship with three spanners, which seems to be one more than I can find a use for.
  15. Just finished day two riding crotch-deep powder in the BC back country using the Backland boots with the Phantom levers. They're smaller and cuter that website images suggest, quite discrete really. They're easy to fit, although I've not had time to figure out how to swap the springs yet. Mine have the gold (next-to-stiffest) fitted as I requested. I mounted the front with minimum forward lean, the back with maximum. I rode one day on a Burton One Hitter (a plank), then the second on a Skeleton Key (a decent board). The boots... just work, they're pretty much the same as my HSPs. They feel skinnier but in minus 10 they're warm enough. They do feel light, not sure if that's real or not. The springs seem a bit easy to over power, so I suspect I'm not really using whatever the give. Maybe I should experiment with the other stiffness springs, but I'm not sure if I really want flex anyway. So in summary: they do what I needed them to do, which is give me increased forward lean they work fine in deep snow, easy enough to get in/out, possibly slightly easier than Intec. I'm using my standard F2 bindings with 1-degree toe lift on the front and 3-degree heel lift on the back.
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