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Need help choosing a ~50/50 setup

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
Currently, I only have one ski - a Kästle touring ski fitted with ATK Freeraider 12 bindings and ride them using a Tecnica Zero G Tour Pro (totalling ~2800g/foot without skins). I have been using it in the resort too this season, doing some lift-assisted freeride/slackcountry. While I love it on long tours in the backcountry, as soon as a tour starts to get a little less about the up and more about the down, the fun starts to dwindle a bit. When the snow is good, the setup is even fun in the resort. However, I need something more passable for the resort days (I don't ski groomers except for getting back to the lift) and non-optimal conditions. I still want to be able to take it out in the slackcountry or more downhill oriented backcountry days though. I have been looking at the Black Crows Atris 184 for this application. At 2000g/ski it seems acceptable for some backcountry touring which would fit the planned 50/50 application. I am not sure on the bindings though. I thought of putting on shifts as I don't really trust the pin bindings inbounds (I also feel like I tire out more when riding pins for a whole day), however, those are heavy, even when compared to the heaviest of pin bindings (although ~200g difference to a G3 ion 12 or Tectons isn't that much). What do you guys think about the Atris + Shift for a 50/50 setup as an addition to my light touring setup? Should I look at a different ski altogether? Do you think I should still go for a full pintech binding even though I plan to use it for lots of lift-assisted skiing?

Some facts about myself: 5'11, 65kg naked, 23 years old (expert skier, have been skiing for 20 years)
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
The Shift is perfect for your requirements. So is the Atris but, depending upon the length, there's other makes/models that could save you 200-300g per ski with no real loss of performance which would balance up the total binding + ski weight equation.


Last edited by Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person on Wed 6-01-21 22:17; edited 1 time in total
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I was also considering the corvus freebird to shed those 200g as they look like a chargier version of the atris. thoughts? Which other skis would you recommend or consider?
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Or you could dual mount your Kastle's with Quiver Killer inserts for both your existing ATK's and new Shifts to give you the binding dampening/elasticity of an alpine binding plus a skinning function for sidecountry then you swap the bindings for disctance skinning. That way you'd only be adding just over 500g per ski when using the Shift and you'd only need the one pair of skins.
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@Airvian, the Scott Scrapper 115 is a fairly stiff, damp charger at the lighter end of the spectrum for that type of ski. I've teamed mine with tectons and happy to ski hard all day and they're fine/confident on landing drops/pillows and the like: they have way more compliance than a low tech pin like the ATK (I also ski on Salomon MTNs on a different set up). I've used that set up for days messing about off lifts and touring at altitude and can happily keep up. I'm 6ft 2ins and 73 kg. Atris + shift will be fine IMV.
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Oh and welcome to snowHead
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Quote:

Or you could dual mount your Kastle's with Quiver Killer inserts for both your existing ATK's and new Shifts to give you the binding dampening/elasticity of an alpine binding plus a skinning function for sidecountry then you swap the bindings for disctance skinning. That way you'd only be adding just over 500g per ski when using the Shift and you'd only need the one pair of skins.


Doing that isn't really an option. The skis are barely pushing the low 1200g/ski mark and are just not substantial enough to justify the shifts. They're good for what they are - a dedicated touring ski. Having put some good miles on them by now and seeing the wear resort days have put on them though, I don't think they'd survive the sustained abuse when going full send in a de-facto alpine binding Confused
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@Sharkymark thanks for the info and the warm welcome - longtime non-registered lurker turned poster tonight. I'll read up on the ski you're using. 115 is the upper limit of width I was considering. What length from the 182 and 189 would you recommend?
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Airvian wrote:
....Doing that isn't really an option. The skis are barely pushing the low 1200g/ski mark and are just not substantial enough to justify the shifts....

Understood, and I'd agree with you at that weight.

The excellent Scott Scrapper 105 is 1700g per ski in a 183cm and only 1780g in the 189cm. Great ski with a Shift. Plus Scott offer a skin to utilise the cut-outs in the ski tips etc.
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Second @Sharkymark, with the MTN explores I went 95 as had other big day boats
loving the faction director 3, (also flat tail) maybe look at some of their lettered versions of too heavy
Volkl v works mantra ( Katana if going bigger but not for resort doodling) only briefly demo’d these but missed the BTMs much less twitchy than I anticipated
The shifts are a revelation on the down and around resort but noticeably heavier on the grunt. The duke PT looks more of the same but haven’t had a chance to fiddle yet.
I have got myself on back order for a pair of Cast plates because I don’t believe there is a better binding than the look pivot for tonking down sub optimum . This IS an expensive option and almost out of reach if you don’t have someone in US to ship as a gift.
At 65kgs you should go short on skis but at 23 I’m astonished you are even look at weight but then I bet you are a roadie.
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I'm in the midst of the same debate, looking to upgrade my Stockli stormrider 95's to a set of shift bindings for "inbound" touring (mostly up my local hill, generally small tours of 450-500m ascent), along with 1 or 2 bigger days when I'm on a full week ski holiday away. Going to move my existing beefy XM13 Salomon bindings onto a pair of Slalom skis for icy piste days. So not a 1 ski to do it all quiver, but about the best I'm going to get I think. Weight a wee worry, the stormriders are 1950g per ski....but my tours are going to be short....anything else I should consider?
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And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
Looks like I'll really have to consider the Scrapper then. Guess I'll just see what deal I can get locally or online. I know I'll be able to demo some Faction skis at my go-to resort as the rental shop there stocks them, so I'll give those a try and see how I like them on the down.

Quote:

The duke PT looks more of the same


The duke PT at 500g more than the shift just seems a little heavy in comparison imo.

Quote:

At 65kgs you should go short on skis but at 23 I’m astonished you are even look at weight but then I bet you are a roadie


yep, usually go short, but I always look at each ski individually as everything skis differently. What is a 'roadie' in this context? Never heard that one before haha
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@coddlesangers Finding the right compromise when looking for a do-it-all set up really is a bit of a pickle. Luckily I don't have to be too weight conscious as I already have a lightweight touring setup for the long days. If you already have the skis I would just try it and if they don't fit the bill, ride them until you find a better solution. If I still had a relatively lightweight all-mountain ski laying around I'd just try them for that role as well.
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@Airvian, sounds like I have a similar lightweight setup to you - Kaestle TX98, Fritschi Xenic, Zero-G pro. IMO it’s great for long tours but far from optimal for a freeride day in anything but perfect snow. I have a burlier Blizzard Rustler 11 / Shift setup that is much more polyvalent. It’s not light (1950g in 180) but you can easily tour on it for a couple of hours if you are fit and it is excellent for the down in all conditions. I tried the Atris and Rustler on 2 consecutive days in Jackson Hole and the Rustler was the clear winnner for me. I also got a Kaestle FX 96 HP this year mounted with Alpine bindings and this would also make a great freeride setup with Shifts. Out of interest where are you based?

Ps I also tried the Faction Agent 3.0 last year which is worth a look if you can demo Faction
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@BobinCH I'm based in Western Austria.
Ah, the rustler 11. Haven't skid them but have heard a lot of people use them with the shift. Can you specify why you liked the Rustler more? I also looked at the Kästles. Have you skid the FX 96 HP yet? How does it compare? If I go Kästle I'd probably go for the FX 106 HP as I want something wider, although those will run me at least ~300€ more than the Atris.
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 Poster: A snowHead
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Airvian wrote:
@BobinCH I'm based in Western Austria.
Ah, the rustler 11. Haven't skid them but have heard a lot of people use them with the shift. Can you specify why you liked the Rustler more? I also looked at the Kästles. Have you skid the FX 96 HP yet? How does it compare? If I go Kästle I'd probably go for the FX 106 HP as I want something wider, although those will run me at least ~300€ more than the Atris.


Sure. To be honest I found the Atris a bit dull and just clicked with the Rustlers straight away. Very smooth and predictable in mixed conditions with enough pop to keep things interesting. Re Kaestle, Yep it’s the FX 96 HP’s I’ve got. Bought as a piste/crud ski but they are awesome and have been my go to ski so far this season. The FX 106 no doubt similarly good and well made so will last. Choices, choices!

Little vid on the FX 96’s Very Happy

http://youtube.com/v/4yXdDcl4vQ4
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
@Airvian,

Servus.

I used to have the Kästle TX87's. Stiff underfoot so ok on piste. The softer tips / tails meant it was pretty good in powder too. In mixed conditions they just got thrown about all over the place and here in the East that is often what I'm skiing on a ski tour.

Tried many touring skis at the Kaprun skitouring testival Nov 2018, the Salomon MTN 95 were the ski's I preferred but out west you will probably want something wider.

Going from ATK's to shifts might change your boot delta which may or maynot be a problem for you.
https://snowheads.com/ski-forum/viewtopic.php?p=4681423&highlight=boot+delta#4681423

PS A roadie is a road cyclist, typically 2m tall, 55 kg, shaved legs and loads of lycra. wink


Last edited by Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person on Thu 7-01-21 15:59; edited 1 time in total
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@spyderjon, Are you selling Black Crows by chance ? I'm after some Freebirds in Yellow.
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AndAnotherThing.. wrote:
@spyderjon, Are you selling Black Crows by chance ? I'm after some Freebirds in Yellow.

Nope, I don't sell Black Crows. The Freebird is the name of their lightweight construction not a model, but IIRC the yellow one is the Orb.

Give Tom/Phil a call at Backcountry UK and tell them you want my mates rates deal.
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DB wrote:
.......Going from ATK's to shifts might change your boot delta which may or may not be a problem for you......

That won't be an issue as a Zero G boot in a Shift will have a bit less delta than a Zero G in a Raider 12.
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@spyderjon, Cheers, yep Orb, touring. I'll give them a shout.
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@AndAnotherThing.., you should also check out the new 20/21 Scott Superguide 95 (which I did sell but I'm sold out and so is Scott so you'd have to find a retailer that still has a pair). Touring gear is flying off the shelves at the moment.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
spyderjon wrote:
The excellent Scott Scrapper 105 is 1700g per ski in a 183cm and only 1780g in the 189cm. Great ski with a Shift. Plus Scott offer a skin to utilise the cut-outs in the ski tips etc.


I got these (in 189) as my touring ski last year am seriously considering QKing them so they work with shifts. They seem to work for most things I am interested in, although something fatter for big days is nice. I'm 90-95kg and 187cm for reference

The only things putting me off are:

1. doubts as to whether I'll be doing any skiing this year
2. the prospect of spyderjon laughing at my home mounting job of my touring bindings Laughing
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Quote:

Little vid on the FX 96’s

@BobinCH That looks tasty. I'll definitely consider the 106, they seem to be a good all-round option, while seemingly a lot more chargey and less playful than the competition I'm considering.

@DB Ohh, got it. Yeah, I'm sort of a roadie in that case, although significantly shorter, without the shaved legs and don't wear lycra Very Happy . Your experience with your Kästles really mirrors my own, hence why I'm looking for the 50/50 alternative. I'm not concerned with the binding delta. TBH, I never noticed a real difference while skiing except for maybe the first run. After that, I usually have my riding position dialled in ok enough.

So right now, the front runners are the Atris, the Faction Skis you guys recommended (pending me getting on them for some demoing as I have never skied them) as well as the Kästles (I cannot not consider Skis from a company based about 30 minutes from my home rolling eyes )
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spyderjon wrote:
@AndAnotherThing.., you should also check out the new 20/21 Scott Superguide 95 (which I did sell but I'm sold out and so is Scott so you'd have to find a retailer that still has a pair).


OK, will do. I fancy going narrower and probably shorter on my next pair, maybe an 85 or 90mm underfoot, with a view to using as a dedicated touring or steep(er) skiing set up.

I have the Green (Navis) Freebird in 179 which have been fantastic. I'd buy again without a second thought.
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@Airvian, must say that, as you live where you live, I wouldn't be buying anything I hadn't demo'ed ...
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 And love to help out and answer questions and of course, read each other's snow reports.
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@under a new name: Exactly. I skied the atris twice last season (which is apparently unchanged for this season). My next resort trip (hopefully on sunday) will probably be centered around trying to get the rental shop guys I know to let me demo as much stuff as possible so I'm ready for the local sales that are about to start Cool
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@Airvian, fun, fun, fun !! Have a blast!
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 You know it makes sense.
You know it makes sense.
@Airvian, the Scrapper 189 + tectons comes in at 5.4 kg. If you're a strong skier, definitely go with the 189: they have a lot of tip rocker and some tail so you won't have any issues pivoting them. If you like to get at it, the extra length gives you that little bit of extra stability and they'll still pedal turn quite happily down a steep couloir.

The only problem with the scrapper being the factory in Ukraine where they're made burnt down just before Xmas so you'll be lucky to find any unless shops have excess stock Crying or Very sad

@Arno, excellent choice snowHead
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 Otherwise you'll just go on seeing the one name:
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I've got Scrapper 105's in all three lengths. I'm out of the 115's and so are Scott.
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 Poster: A snowHead
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Thanks a lot guys. I'll definitely have a blast. I hope I'll get to test the Scrapper too. I believe I have never seen one on the mountain before (generally rarely seen Scott skis). At least I now know for sure that I'll be giving the Shifts a shot, all that's left now is getting it on the right ski Razz
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
I can vouch for the scrapper 105 with shifts too; spent a day smashing pistes on them during a low tide day a couple of years ago.

What I would say is to balance the binding with the ski: putting a shift on a BC freebird or a superguide for example will deaden the feel.
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Quote:

Ps I also tried the Faction Agent 3.0 last year which is worth a look if you can demo Faction



@BobinCH So I got to demo most of the discussed skis (except for the Scrapper and Faction Agent). I liked them all, only the faction Dictator 3.0 felt really stiff and a bit much (maybe because I'm light, don't know). It was a bit of a snow sword though and got through everything without a problem. You say you demoed the Agent 3.0 and I fell like it seems to be an easier ski than the dictator. Can you comment? If it holds up similarly to the Dictator but is lighter and a bit easier ride the ~300g lighter weight compared to the Atris and FX106HP would draw me to it (would compensate some of the weight the Shift adds), even though faction has a bit of a bad durability rep.
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