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Marker Kingpin v Salomon Shift

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I've recently acquired a very (138 underfoot) large pair of skis which are fitted with Kingpins. I also have a pair of Salomon Shifts. I'm going to Japan next year and will be doing a little touring so which is the better of the two? I'd prefer that which has the better downhill performance as they both have the same safety mechanisms.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
You answered your own question, the Shifts are documented as having alpine-like release capability so will ski better downhill, that said, I've been running Kingpins on a pair of fat skis for 4 years now and can't fault them, lighter too!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
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@justabod, I’m guessing your 138 underfoot skis are Lotus 138’s. If so, I’ve got Shifts on my 138’s and they work well for light tours.

One thing to be aware of is the stiff rocker which makes touring on hard snow pretty difficult due to the minimal contact patch. In soft snow they are fine, and in very soft snow the rocker is actually an advantage, as they naturally ride up.
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@justabod, the Kingpin and the Shift do not have the same safety mechanisms. Although the Kingpin has an alpine style heel is behaves like a typicial tech heel in that it provides both the vertical and lateral release functions combined with a non-elastic tech toe. The Shift in downhill mode is a typical alpine binding with the heel having the vertical release function and the lateral release being in the fully eleastic toe. The Kingpin with its laterally releasing heel will give slightly better protection against a soft tissue (ACL/MCL) injury whereas a Shift with its laterally releasing toe will give slightly better protection against a tib/fib fracture.

The downhill performance of the Kingpin is very good but the Shift will surpass it especially on hardpack but in soft snow it's a lot less noticeable. In touring mode the slightly lighter Kingpin will help (especially on a heavy ski) but the biggest advantage of the Kingpin is its additional climbing bar should the terrain require it. Hopefully you won't be having any hardpack in Japan and super technical terrain is unlikely so there's really not going to be any really noticeable difference the two bindings.

If the Kingpins are in good shape, fit your sole length and put you in the right place on the ski then my preference would be to use them - and it'll save having to put more holes in the ski. I'd also recommend checking the batch number on the Kingpins to check that if they were part of the recalled batch. If yes then check will the seller that the toes were replaced. If they haven't been I can sort that out for you but don't leave it until the last minute.
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I am curious, @spyderjon, what you mean by,

Quote:

downhill performance of the Kingpin is very good but the Shift will surpass it especially on hardpack
?
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under a new name wrote:
I am curious, @spyderjon, what you mean by,

Quote:

downhill performance of the Kingpin is very good but the Shift will surpass it especially on hardpack
?

No elasticity in the Kingpin tech toe (as in all tech toes apart from the Rad 2/Rotation/Beast) which on hardpack means no suspension and a rattley ride.
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Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
@spyderjon, ah.

Should I notice similar betwixt Squires and Dynafit Speeds? I'm usually pretty sensitive to skis/etc. but can't say I've noticed that sort of thing (and there was quite a bit hardpack last season where I* skied!)

* Clearly user error
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After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
under a new name wrote:
@spyderjon, ah.

Should I notice similar betwixt Squires and Dynafit Speeds? I'm usually pretty sensitive to skis/etc. but can't say I've noticed that sort of thing (and there was quite a bit hardpack last season where I* skied!)

* Clearly user error

Yes you should but it depends upon the skis used with each binding as tech bindings like the Speeds are usually on less damp lighter construction skis which will be more rattley in themselves. The biggest think I'd notice if I were swapping between those two bindings would be the high delta angle of the Speeds - which I couldn't use without a good thickness of toe shim.
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Neither. Marker F10/12 will much better suit what you are doing.

I spent 3 winters guiding Cat Skiing in Japan (Mikuni Cat) - I started out on Plum's and very quickly moved over to a Marker F10's and never looked back.

In Japan unless you are only touring, go for something you can put on in Deep Snow, that won't just let go when you snag Sassa(Bamboo Grass) or trees.

Being able to stop/kick into your bindings is not just nice, its a real life saver when you are knackerd.

Yes if I was planning a multi day tour in Japan I would take a set of Tech bindings, but otherwise NO.

Edit: I would not use Tech bindings on any super fat skis ever - (apart from PLUM envoi le gross) they are not built for it, can't handle the torque.
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@Idris, the OP already owns both Kingpins and Shifts.

And there's no problem with any of the latest generation of tech bindings on wide skis.
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@spyderjon, interesting, on both points. The Speeds are on Black Diamond Route 95s (170 iirc?) which (on a sample of around 14 days) seem reasonably burly, the Squires on Bonafides (173), which, well, anyway, are quite burly enough. I didn't notice the delta change! and had been thinking the 0Gs needed a bit under the heel.

Sorry, we are way off topic here! Embarassed
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Shifts ski WAY better than Kingpins IME. Kingpins tour a little better, but touring on a 138mm ski will suck on anything over 10° or so anyway.

@Idris, you mean putting on in touring mode I presume? Shifts click in for descent like an alpine binding - going down they basically are an alpine binding, and I don't think your other concerns apply to them either.

@under a new name, yeah you probably should notice... I've had TLT Speeds on a couple of skis, one pair of which were quiver killered for Marker Barons too. In soft snow the Speeds were fine, but on hard (or worse, groomed) snow they felt like completely different skis. Granted at 193cm, 40m radius and a number of kilograms per ski they might have been a bit much for such a light binding, but the difference was really night and day.


Last edited by And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports. on Sun 14-06-20 9:13; edited 1 time in total
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Quote:

And there's no problem with any of the latest generation of tech bindings on wide skis.

NehNeh
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You know it makes sense.
@spyderjon, the skis are drilled to fit a BSL of 308mm but mine are 325mm. There was another thread in which you commented saying that although the adjustable range is 25mm the jig doesn't drill to the centre of that. Just looking at it by eye the rear piece won't go back far enough to accommodate my boot. What's the solution, to drill new holes for the rear piece and if so, how far back?

If I was to swap the bindings to use the Shifts how many extra holes would be needed and would the binding position need to move a lot as a result?
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Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
@justabod, usually you can just remount either the toe or the heel. Moving the toe forward will move the boot centre line forward relative to the mounting line on the ski or moving the heel back will move the boot centre line rearward relative to the mounting line - you will need to decide where you want to be positioned on the ski and then move either the toe or heel accordingly.

If you want to maintain the existing mounting location on the skis or get very close to it (and assuming that the original 308mm mount was done accurately) you could remount the Kingpins for a 328-330mm sole length which would give you recommended 10mm seperation (or vey close to it) between the old and new locations and there'd be enough forward adjustment on the heel track for your 325mm boot. On a heavily rockered powder ski relatively small adjustments in the mount point can be quite noticeable so assessing the current position and your required position is important - especially if it's a DPS ski as they're always mucking around with the mounting location between different years of the same ski and many users adjust the mounting position. The ski specific threads in TGR's Tech Talk section are really good sources for information as is Blister Review or emailing DPS.

Without a Kingpin jig the only way you can see what will work around the existing mount is to remove the bindings and do some carefull measuring whilst remembering to allow for the forward pressure adjustment in the heel. Having the jig makes the evaluation easy.

With the same bsl there's no conflict between the Kingpin mounting locations and that of the Shift however as you're changing sole lengths that could be an issue. I've got to call in my shop this afternoon so I'll mock up a 308mm Kingpin v a 325mm Shift and let you know if it's doable.
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 Poster: A snowHead
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@spyderjon, thank you. I still want to do your tech course when this bloody virus is over with so will bring them up then?

Shifts seem to have quite a high base, will that not lift me up quite a bit especially with hybrid boots? I have Tecnica Cochise.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
justabod wrote:
......
Shifts seem to have quite a high base, will that not lift me up quite a bit especially with hybrid boots? I have Tecnica Cochise.

Not real difference to any competitor binding. The only way you'll get lower with s skinning function is with a very lightweight 'weight weanie' brakeless design.
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
A 325mm Shift mount will work great around the existing 308mm Kingpin mount using the same mounting position.

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@spyderjon, thank you: that's allayed my fears. Do you know when you'll start lessons up again?
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The problem with my lessons is the social distancing thing as they're a relatively up close kind of thing and my benches are 800mm across - so whilst the social distancing requirement is 2m I can't run them but if/when it reduces to 1m then we're in business.
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