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How to mount XC ski bindings?
February 16, 2010 6:47 AM   Subscribe

How do I mount cross-country ski bindings? I'm a technically adept individual with the appropriate tools, but info (beyond "take it to the shop and let a pro do it!) is seemingly hard to find online...

With the end of season clearances on cross-country skis here I've decided to buy a set of boots, skis, and bindings. Being a combination of thrifty and accustomed to doing things myself I want to handle mounting the bindings.

It's my understanding that mounting bindings to skis is a matter of finding the right location, drilling appropriately deep (but not all the way though) holes, putting a bit of epoxy in the holes, then screwing the bindings in place. I've also read that both skis, bindings, and boots are typically marked with a center line that is aligned to establish the proper mounting location.

So, I guess my questions are as follows:

- How specifically does one determine the location for the bindings?
- What type of epoxy (if any) should be used in the screw holes?
- Except for "as deep as needed for the screws", how should the holes be drilled? I presume any material dislodged / pushed up around the hole should be removed before seating the binding.
- Are there any particular torque specs for the screws, or is a typical "snug" sufficient?

Thank you!
posted by c0nsumer to Sports, Hobbies, & Recreation (2 answers total)
 
I strongly recommend having a competent ski shop install your bindings. In my experience, it is difficult to get the binding completely parallel to the ski. You don't want to ski with your foot off-axis. Ski shops have a special jig that clamps onto the sides of the ski that will insure that the binding is parallel to the ski. If you do it at home and later realize that the binding is slightly-off axis, you will just have to live with it (you can't drill a new hole 1mm over from the old hole). But if you insist:

- How specifically does one determine the location for the bindings?

For classic skis, you want the tip to run along the track and the tail to stick up when your boot is in the air, so you install the binding with the pivot point (where the metal bar on the front of your boots will be, this will be marked on the installation template which you tape the the ski) about 1cm back of the balance point. You can find the balance point with a pencil or something similar.

For skate skis, you want the ski to stay level when your boot is in the air, so you install the binding with the pivot point at the balance point.

- What type of epoxy (if any) should be used in the screw holes?

You just need a little dab of epoxy for each screw. Any kind is fine.

Some people say you shouldn't use epoxy because it will somehow damage the foam core of the skis. I've never seen this happen.

- Except for "as deep as needed for the screws", how should the holes be drilled?

I think the binding mounting instructions will cover this. I would guess about 1cm. You just want a hole as deep as the wide part of the screw (you don't drill a hole for the tapered tip and the shoulder sits in the binding, not the ski).

- Are there any particular torque specs for the screws, or is a typical "snug" sufficient?

Snug is fine. I don't think there could be a particular torque spec because the ski material underneath would cause too much variation from ski to ski. You just want to turn the screw until it is seated.
posted by ssg at 8:06 AM on February 16, 2010


ssg: Thanks for the info. This is exactly what I'm looking for.

Once everything arrives (it's on order with REI) I'll give it a look. Knowing now that the shop uses a jig for it, I imagine that the assurances granted by this alone would be worth the install cost. Thankfully there's a bunch of ski shops around here (SE Michigan), all with XC experience. Since it's the end of the season I imagine there won't be much of a wait, either.

Thanks very much.
posted by c0nsumer at 8:19 AM on February 16, 2010


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