Darren Dix

Darren Dix

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Darren Dix

Darren Dix wrote an answer about on May 4, 2013

Karakoram definitely is making the best split-board bindings for the conventional Voile hardwear pattern, which is what Spark R&D also uses. K's are twice the money (or more), but have the totally awesome lever release system that puts the original Voile puck system to SHAME.
If you want the best set up for the conventional Voile hole set up, the Karakoram Carbon SL bindings are the best, lightest, and with a stiff heel plate (thank GOD!). Kind of hard to find, but I bet next year, there will be HELLA split boarding gear for sale. Your next best option that still uses your old Voile puck system is Spark R&D's burner. They are only marginally heavier than the Karakoram Carbon SL (that is only binding weight. I'm not sure where the Karakoram plates put you for weight compared to the old Voile pucks....) at around 720 grams per binding.
K2 has a new system that of course makes all of these set ups obsolete, AND eliminates a lot of binding weight by, well, eliminating the bindings! (almost... there's still foot plates.) The touring gear is built into the K2 boot itself, which I believe features Vibram soles, and clip on boot crampons, as well as split board crampons. Naturally, nothing is compatible with the K2 set up, and you need to re-up on an all new expensive array of gear from K2, BUT.... before a bunch of spare-changing hippies go nuts and talk shit, BRAVO to K2 for advancing our beloved sport. These are EXACTLY the improvements I was looking for in a B/C split boarding package. BRAVO to Black Diamond for the collapsable poles that fit in your pack as well. BRAVO to Gecko for the glue-less touring skins! BRAVO to Karakoram for the split board clips that solve the Voile chinese clip problems, and their INGENIOUS set up! BRAVO to Spark R&D, who really did seem to "SPARK" interest in new split board gear with "the fuse". Nice to see the lower weight and improvements. It's exciting to see what will come next...

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