The Duke is a full-on freeride binding with touring capability, not a touring binding with a freeride marketing plan.
Share your thoughts
Good, despite some minor issues
Used this binding briefly with some K2 Pontoons. Never got the chance to actually set them up with skins, but they worked pretty well around the resorts despite being a bit heavy. The brakes tend to snag each other since they are elevated so high off of the skis because of the design of this binding - I ended up cutting the brakes off entirely. The 16 DIN rating was a bit overkill for me. Exchanging them for a set of Marker Barons to save a ton of weight.
Best of whats available.
Im a Salomon guy, until they come out with something that is a bomber AT binding im going to roll with these. Right now, when i drop in in the BC i am 90% confident in my binding, the loss of the 10% comes in because they wear and become loose in the pivots and am suspect to maybe break in the depth of a tour although in fairness they have not yet. I have the 2010-09 model, am now returning them in hopes that the 2011 model will rock and they will have fixed them. They ski fine, and i dont care if they are heavy, the boys carry the gear that works for the job at hand no matter what it weighs! My eyes are always looking to see if Salomon can come out with something. Nothing feels like an S16 underfoot! If your looking at these, be sure not to use them on icy crapy choppy chundering hard pack, thats how the pivots loosen I think.
Sure its heavy, but it is so solid! Great for side-country and even longer backcountry tours.
Perfect Slackcountry Companion
Don't look at them as AT bindings that tour like crap, look at them like Alpine bindings that tour when you need them to. Mounted on my daily drivers, the dukes do weigh down the set up and give me an unnatural stride when skinning. This is worth it when I want bombproof clamps on the ride down.
Will these bindings work with the Garmont...
Will these bindings work with the Garmont Radium boots? I have heard rumors that the AFD plate causes them to fail din tests. Any answers?
I have heard about problems related to...
I have heard about problems related to landing switch on these. Something about a piece breaking when landing big airs switch. Can anyone talk on this or know anyone this has happened to, or is it just a rumor?
Sounds like a rumor to me. I have seen some really huge switch hits on these and nothing bad has happened. I know a guy that had these on S7's and he hit big park and bc jumps all the time, still rocking that set up. And I have dropped some big cliffs to switch with no problems.
Cool thanks, I'm glad to hear that. I just wouldn't want to blow up expensive bindings or my knee deep in the BC off a big booter.
These bindings are comparable to a Mountain Bike with 6-7" of travel.
1. Weight. Just like a 6-7" Mountain Bike, these bindings are not light. Yeah, they are not the heaviest thing on the market, but they would never be considered lightweight by anyone's standards.
2. Uphill Performance. Just as a 6-7" Mountain Bike is not the best bike to climb long distances with, this binding is not the best uphill performing binding out there. It does go uphill. The kick bar could be slightly higher, the binding could pivot easier. It does lack a few features in the uphill department, but it still manages fairly well.
3. Downhill Performance. Just a 6-7" Mountain Bike will not slay a downhill course like the Santa Cruz V-10, this binding will not compete the the Rossignol FKS alpine binding for downhill use. It is, however, the very best option on the market for a downhill binding with a touring feature. I ski this binding occasionally inbounds. I jump, butter, huck, drop, starightline, charge, and tour on this binding. I occasionally forget I am on a touring binding. It has great elasticity (especially for a marker binding), and the toe height adjustment works like a dream (especially useful for people on Dalbello boots).
To summarize. This binding is not the best binding on the market for uphill performance. It also doesn't compete with the very best alpine binding, but it does quite well in both departments. Just remember, if your binding makes you struggle uphill, it will make you stronger. If your binding makes you struggle downhill....good luck!
First let me say I love this binding. I have skied on it for three seasons and I've never popped out when I didn't want to. The confidence I gained with this binding really helped me push my skiing to the next level. The weight of the binding is well worth it. All this being said, this last season I've noticed some deterioration. It hasn't effected my skiing yet but when I work on my skis I find that there is starting be be a little bit of a wiggle forward and back. Its less than a millimeter of movement but its happening in both of my bindings and I'm just hoping it won't get worse. Has anyone else had this problem and if so can it be fixed? From what I can tell its just a loosening of the band that helps with the heel lockdown and it doesnt look fixable.
conclusion: great binding, love it. hoping I can fix my wiggle
Duke vs. Baron? I'm a small guy @ 5'3"...
Duke vs. Baron? I'm a small guy @ 5'3" 125lbs, ski pretty hard in the steeps of Taos, biggest airs about 30'. A local salesman said the 16 din Jester/Duke is worth the extra cost and weight (even though I set my din @ 8) for the added strength, safety and durability. Any knowledge or experience on this?
The salesdude was right, while Dukes may cost more, you want to make sure you get a binding that can last a while. while a days worth of 30' foot airs may not seem like much, a season of them can really strain a binding and these will stand up to those weird uphill/sideways/imperfect landings we all experience. my 2¢.
The Duke of Gnar
I bought a pair of Dukes last year, mounted them on a pair of K2 Coombas, and they've been one of my favorite pieces of gear ever since. This AT binding should be bought for the alpine mode. I feel completely confidant and secure in the Dukes and their ability to handle hard-charging in a resort and in the backcountry. The only time they've released on me has been during unfortunate run-ins with trees. The touring mode works perfectly fine. The two climbing positions have gotten me up a variety of pitches comfortably. Yes, the bindings are heavier than other AT bindings and, yes, you have to step out to switch between alpine and touring mode, but those are a small price to pay for all the advantages the Duke has.
This is a binding for young, aggressive skiers. It's expensive and heavy so clearly many will prefer other AT bindings. But, for hard charging skiers interested in the backcountry, as opposed to backcountry skiers, the Duke is an awesome binding.
the way to go
I have used dukes since they came out and my original pair is still rocking today. Although they may be heavier than a dyna fit the confidence on the way down is very comforting. If you're worried about the weight just think of it as training for the next epic tour. Hands down best at binding on the market!
For a tweener binding it works well. My biggest issue with the binding is the gouging that it has caused on the heel of my boot. Not exactly stoked to pay $400+ for a binding that ruins a $700 pair of boots.
As a resort skier who trends to the side-country and easily accessed backcountry, this binding is all that I need. I do admit there is a weakness in the AFD, though I have not personally broken one (knock on wood) and I know a few people who have. If adjusted properly, they are bomber and the best binding for side-country and easily accessed backcountry. For long and/or steep tours, they are not the greatest. They could really use a longer climbing bar, as the height on the current one is not sufficient past 30 degrees. They are super easy to mount with the included template!
Still, and awesome-kick ass binding that is solid all around!
Bomber binder. Great for resort, sidecountry, and day tours. Anyone complaining about weight or how these tour - the duke is exactly what they marketed it as, a burly resort binder with limited touring capabilities. If you want something lighter or that strides better get a real A/T setup. I love mine, have them mounted on pmgear lhasa's with dynafit titans. Not the lightest setup but for the skiing I do (80% resort/ 20% touring) it works great.
Excellent downhill and short-tour binding
The Duke is a great binding, provided that you know (or a competent MARKER tech) how to set them up properly. The toe height is tricky to get perfect, especially with rockered alpine touring soles. Asides from that, these bindings are excellent! For touring, a higher heel bar would have been cool, but, this binding is not designed for multi-day tours or long, steep approaches. It is what it is marketed to be, a side-country and short-backcountry binding that performs just as well, if not better, than 90% of the alpine bindings on the market. No slop or play on the down, and they can drive any sort of ski that it will fit. I have three pairs of Dukes and a pair of Barons and so far have no complaints!
thinking about getting a pair of Dukes for...
thinking about getting a pair of Dukes for short sidecountry ventures. I'm rocking a 316 mm sole, right in the grey area, and am wondering if I should get the small or the large binding. any suggestions?
Get the Large. It's much better to be more in the 'meat' of a bindings range (both sole length as well as DIN) than to be so close to either end.
I'm trying to figure out what binding to...
I'm trying to figure out what binding to get for my 182 Shoguns. I've been debating getting the Salomon STH 14 binding (at 100mm brake, it's at skis.com). Now i'm thinking about a touring binding. I've primarily skied the blacks, and do the doubles (sloppily) however as I may be moving to Montana I have a huge interest in getting into the backcountry, off-piste terrain.
So my question is this...Will these bindings be as good "in-bounds" as say, the STH 14 (or any other alpine binding)? I feel it'd be nice to have the opportunity for advancement that the DUKE will grant. Thoughts?
I skied on my Dukes at Squaw this season and have had no problems with them. I love them and trust them even when dropping big cliffs. If you want the ability to go off piste from time to time I say go with the Dukes!
I'm trying to figure out whether to get...
I'm trying to figure out whether to get Dukes, Barons or Dynafits. Everyone seems to love all 3, so how to decide? I'm using Dynafit ZZero 4 C-TFs, in case that makes a difference. I'm 5'10", 170 lbs.
I'm no Seth, and it's probably going to be a few years before I hike Cody. When I'm OB or in the backcountry, I'm looking strictly for deep silky smooth pow. But I'm also going to be using these on days when it's half inbounds/half out, so they need to be solid in downhill mode in case it's cruddy. I want to feel confident going anywhere in or out with these.
Since they all 3 seem awesome, should I just go with the lightest of the 3? Any suggestions on how to approach it would be mucho appreciated.
If you don't ski like Seth, you can rule out Dukes. Dynafits are obviously the lightest option, but you pay for it in downhill performance and confidence compared to dukes/barons. i would recommend looking at fritschi diamir freeride plus bindings - which kind of fall inbetween barons and dynafits (i.e. lighter and climb better than barons but better downhill performance than dynafits) and overall solid downhill performance in and out of bounds. Hope this helps
which ones did you buy?
what kind of ski did you put them on?
and how did they work?
Great to ski, but a pain to tour and falls apart
So firts off, I am mainly a hard charging resort skiier who's been doing a bit of back counrty... 2 weekends to be exact.
After just 2 weekends, broke the Riser, so now I can return and excahnge the binding. These do kick butt going downhill, but changing to touring mode is a real challenge, especially in deep snow or rough conditions.
And teh weight is heavy for going up hill. Risers are difficult to adjust as you move through varied terrain as well. I went with a group and saw a lot of different options from the Blackdiamonds to the Fritchi's etc. and will probably try something different. They all seem better for the touring, but certainly the dukes are the best for the downhill.
i have just starting touring this year and was at a toss up between fritschi and the dukes. the simplest explanation i have heard so far is that if you are mainly a resort skier that will tour get the dukes. so far the binding as been super easy to use and tour with, haven't noticed the extra weight since i have never been on another touring binding, but as long as your not a minimalist you might not notice either way.
have a pair mounted on bluehouse districts and the new goat, bomber binding and dont expect any troubles with them. as a side note last years color of the duke and the new gotamas are sick.