Dynafit Manaslu Binding Inserts

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This post by WildSnow.com blogger  

As most of you blogsters know, Dynafit Manaslu skis began last winter with a useful insert system specifically configured for mounting Dynafit bindings without a jig or drill. I just heard from Salewa NA and they’ve improved explication of this system with the following stickers. The main thing to remember about the Dynafit “pre drilled” skis is you usually do not need to drill the inserts, you just fire a screw in and make sure you don’t over-torque. Indeed, you make SURE you do not over-torque. Note these inserts are not designed for constant swapping of bindings, as the type of screws used for mounting eventually eat up any threads they make in the holes (unlike machine screws and threaded metal inserts.) Also, sometimes the insert bores are clogged with resin from the factory molding process, check for that with a small sharp probe. If you find some of the holes clogged, drill out with standard binding mount bit.

Dynafit backcountry skiing.
Manaslu binding insert stickers above.

Verbiage from Dynafit:

Manaslu insert system increases binding holding strength by 25% and allows simple and quick mounting of Dynafit bindings. Again, it’s a Nylon plug inserted into the Pawlonia and Synthetic stringers in the ski’s core. The plug is larger diameter than the pre cut holes in the Titanal top plate. The Nylon holds the binding screws 25% better than wood or synthetic core would…..and allows the bindings to be simply screwed onto the ski…with the Titanal top plate and hole selection….serving in place of a JIG. This is NOT an insert system like K2 and Voile that you can use over and over to change bindings daily.

More regarding WildSnow.com. It appears we’re playing with the big boys over a Backcountry Mag. Turns out they’ve got a sticker going on the Manaslu that says it’s a Backcountry Mag editor’s choice, and, a WildSnow.com top choice! We love it. Only I’d hope anyone looking at Manaslus has already surfed WildSnow and learned about the ski here — but if not, the sticker will remind them where to head for the best info on the web.

Comments

31 Responses to “Dynafit Manaslu Binding Inserts”

  1. Nathan Bryant September 23rd, 2008 3:39 pm

    Thanks for this, Lou. My Manaslu’s are due to arrive via Fedex tomorrow, and I was anticipating having to bug Tim at Salewa about how to mount. Do you know if the screws that come with the Comfort can be used without modification?

  2. Lou September 23rd, 2008 4:12 pm

    Hi Nathan, yeah, the screws should work fine. Just be VERY careful not to over-torque, and perhaps check torque every so often through the winter. I wonder if we should have a torque spec for doing this, rather than just by feel? Would be interesting, perhaps I’ll figure out a way to do that, probably with a small torque wrench, but it would have to be a good quality one and those are expensive. But then, there are ways to set torque without a torque wrench…

  3. Nathan Bryant September 23rd, 2008 7:28 pm

    Great, thanks! I’ll try to just get them a hair tighter than finger tight.

  4. Piotr September 24th, 2008 2:04 am

    I wonder if ‘Only for Dynafit Vertical ST/FT/Comfort’ statement mean Manaslu can’t be driled at all (i.e. you can’t fix other bindings to it)? If, so, the fun part of this is if you have BSL above 323mm you are not allowed to ski 169cm Manaslu. Also, I love ‘Screw with care’ aphorism. ;)

    Loosely related: there was a line of Dynafit skis a while back that had ‘Use only with Dynafit bindings’ print on the topsheet. Do you happen to know what was the reason? Markieting or technical resasons (e.g. size of some reinforcement plate)?

  5. Lou September 24th, 2008 7:08 am

    Piotr, I’m pretty sure the statement about required bindings is just marketing speak, as so long that the binding has the same hole pattern as that of the pre-drilled holes in the ski, in my experience they work fine. Let’s see what Dynafit has to say. Perhaps there is a screw length issue, or perhaps it just has to do with the size range of the bindings as opposed to what’s printed on the sticker.

  6. Marcin September 24th, 2008 7:39 am

    I am waiting for my Manaslu as they should arrive to me next week. This issue with inserts makes me a littlebit suspicious as this type of the mounting is against the usual habbits. Lou do you think that adding the epoxy to wholes from the very beginning. I am agree that the phrase screw with care is a little bit ambiguous

  7. Tony September 24th, 2008 7:45 am

    Lou,

    More questions on mounting the Manaslus:

    1) In your Dynafit binding mounting instructions, I think you mention lining up the boot in the binding before tightening the screws for a final time. (Its been a while since I read those instruactions, and I never have mounted bindings myself.) Do you need to follow this stem with the Manaslu, or are the inserts accurately enough placed not to need this step?

    2) How should the procedure for screwing in the screws be different than the procedure for a standard mount? Again, I have not done this other than reading your previously published mounting instructions so any details would help. I know you need to worry about over torqueing scews for a standard mount as well as with the inserts.

  8. RandoSwede September 24th, 2008 7:58 am

    Lou-
    How about using a little blue loc-tite on the threads to ensure that they stay put during the season? The screws that come with K2 tele insert skis have loc-tite on them.

  9. Tony September 24th, 2008 8:18 am

    RS, I don’t think lock-tite is desinged to work with materials other than metal. I know it degrades some plastics, not sure about nylon.

  10. Lou September 24th, 2008 9:59 am

    Yeah, you don’t want to be using Loctite with plastic, 5-min epoxy works fine, and reverses pretty easily though I’d warm the screws with a soldering iron before backing out.

  11. Mike S October 19th, 2008 2:18 pm

    Interesting that there is no overlap stated in the sole lengths between the two mounting options. For example, the length of the 27 and 27.5 shell for the BD Method boot is 318mm* – exactly the max for the inner mounting position on the 178 and 187 Manaslus.

    Does this mean I’m out of luck if my other pair of boots is a few mm longer – say 328? Splitting it right on the most common (?) mens foot sizes (27 – 28) seems a dubious choice. Or do the ranges given leave some spare adjustment room?

    * http://www.bdel.com/pdf/BD%20boot%20sizing_print.pdf

  12. Jonathan S. Shefftz December 29th, 2008 8:12 pm

    “Interesting that there is no overlap stated in the sole lengths between the two mounting options.”
    – My understanding is that the binding fore/aft adjustment range solves any fit problems. But the more interesting interesting issue is finding the right fore/aft balance point. I’m a 296mm bsl in the 169cm, so the sticker recommends the fore heel position and aft toe position. However, using my Dynafit jig to measure, to be in the center of the binding adjustment range I should actually be either fore on both toe & heel or aft on both toe & heel.
    – My solution would usually be to measure the boot’s Ball-of-Foot against the ski’s running length, but with the tip rocker, hmm… so instead I measured against a 170cm BD Verdict (which BoF had me mount 0.5cm fore of boot center mark) and 168cm Atomic Kongur (which BoF had me mount 3cm fore of boot center mark), and roughly adjusted for the slight length differences from the 169cm Manaslu. The fore position (i.e., recommended for boots 3mm longer than mine) would puts me 3cm aft of those other skis that were mounted to Bof, so I’m going to try that first (instead of the even further aft position for my boot size).

  13. Lou December 30th, 2008 7:26 am

    All, the Manaslu in my experience is forgiving of mounting position, but still worth experimenting with by using the two different positions provided by the inserts. Remember that the big long tip makes it look like you’re farther back on the running surface than you really are.

  14. se ak skier June 5th, 2009 10:31 pm

    Hi-I have no experience w/ inserts. I have a boot sole length of 279mm but want to try the Manaslu in 178cm. I have been told that the inserts won’t fit this sole length. Can I drill the skis anyway? How will this effect the ski? Any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks

  15. jones April 28th, 2010 12:35 pm

    my dynafit toe ripped out of my Manaslu while skinning!!! It was their third outing and at least i didn’t eat it on a descent or even far from the trailhead, but WTF!!!!!!!! The binder was still on my boot at least.
    They’d only been mounted once, by me, not too tight. I’m getting helicoils installed – with weight penalty.
    Should i preemptively helicoil the other toe? – With at least the toe stuck in place i can “ski” out of the hills.
    Also, the plastic (important: with crampon mount) broke on my FT 12 toe piece. I’ve heard that these mount up weird without the carbon (torque) plate in place. I can’t mount a a crampon attachment with carbon plate in place. Is this Dynafit’s responsibility?
    25% stronger? REALLY?
    thanks for reading.

  16. SteveG April 28th, 2010 8:44 pm

    jones – Sounds like perhaps the screws loosened. I had Manaslu mount problems too. Stripped a toe while mounting and had an another insert spin while mounting. I did a lot of research. Salewa cust. serv. told me that they’d heard of mixed results with helicoils. Depends on if the coil goes into wood or foam I think. Fixed mine by drilling out the plastic plug and epoxyed in a hardwood plug. So far so good but I only have 3 inbounds days, 3 short tours and 10 miles of skinning on them.I ski gently and feel the mount system is not that good if you are hard on equipment. You need to check to make sure the screws don’t loosen. A little 5 min epoxy when you mount is supposed to help keep the screws secure. Salewa did offer to sell me one ski at a fair price. Good luck to you.

  17. Lou April 29th, 2010 6:53 am

    Jones, that is indeed a bunch of hassle and I’m sorry to hear it. I’ve mounted a few pair of Manaslu and never had a problem with any bindings pulling out. I mount with epoxy and am careful to tighten but not over-tighten. We cut the torque plates off all our FT-12s but leave a tiny bit under the crampon hook as it needs that to take up space. The torque plate is cosmetic as far as our extensive testing can tell. The plastic rearward of the crampon hooks is vestigial, we cut it all off and just leave the hooks sticking out. The Manaslu inserts are very strong, I’ve spoken with the engineer who tested them. But the “25%” number is just marketing speak as regular mount strength varies greatly with the type of ski construction and skill of mechanic. I’m convinced the Manaslu inserts are just as strong as a regular mount, and perhaps stronger.

    I have gotten a few spinning inserts while mounting Manaslus, and stripped one screw a while back. In both cases I drilled out the insert, egged out the resulting hole a bit in an inverse pyramid shape by poking around in there with an awl, then filled with a mixture of JBweld and steel wool. I then drilled, tapped, and installed screw with epoxy. I don’t see why using wood would be any better, and wood would not handle moisture very well.

    All, please note that one of the mounting problems with ST and FT Dynafit bindings is that the tight screw holes in the toe plate can cause you to exert more force than necessary while inserting the screws in the bindings. We always drill these out so the screw fits snugly through the hole but doesn’t try to thread. I highly advise all home mounters to do this, it really helps.

  18. SteveG April 29th, 2010 7:12 am

    Definitely agree with Lou on the JB weld over wood. I went with what I had experience with. The JB weld fix is sure easier than using a drill press and chisel as a lathe to turn a hardwood sized dowel. :smile: I forgot about drilling the threads out of the plates. I did that too. What were they thinking when they designed that feature? According to my engineer friends it goes against the norm for mating two plates with a threaded fastener.

  19. Lou April 29th, 2010 7:24 am

    “According to my engineer friends it goes against the norm for mating two plates with a threaded fastener.”

    Exactly.

    What’s interesting is that in the days when shop mechs did most if not all ski mounting, there was plenty of stuff like this they had to deal with. It’s all just more obvious these days because so many people are doing their own mounting. What is surprising to me is that these sorts of things are not corrected sooner.

  20. SteveG April 29th, 2010 9:00 am

    Business is good and molds are expensive + slipped through the corporate cracks at the old to new comfort toe base redesign. I still think the mounting directions decal for my 320 BSL (forward position for toe, rear for heel) was wrong and that hasn’t been fixed as far as I can tell. I used front/front.

  21. stephen May 16th, 2010 3:15 am

    Okaaay… This is all interesting stuff, if a bit worrying. I was hoping that I could get away with swapping the bindings off the Manaslus reasonably often.

    The plan was to share them between a few skis to save space and weight when travelling, and $. Can I realistically do this, or are the inserts going to crap out in short order? FWIW, I’m good with tools (years in workshops) and don’t break things.

    BTW, I mounted the Manaslus before I read this and didn’t use epoxy – nothing about this with the skis or bindings – and I figured the inserts would work sort of like Nyloc nuts. Should I remove the bindings and refit them with epoxy (and drill out those wretched holes while I’m at it), or am I using up one of the skis “nine lives” if I do this? Thanks for any info!

  22. Jordy March 10th, 2011 8:39 pm

    I know that this is an old string – but hopefully someone can still answer my question. I have a got a set of TLT speed bindings that I want to mount on a pair of 187cm Manaslu skis. My boot length is 320mm, so if I follow the recommendation, I would use the forward toe mount holes and the aft heel mount holes. However, the TLT speed does not have the same range of adjustment as the TLT vertical binding does, and this arrangement just doesn’t fit (i.e. the distance between toe and heel is too great for my boot length). So, the question I have is: Should I get these drilled? Should I use a “new” combination of the pre-drilled holes (e.g. toe on the aft, heel on the aft holes / toe on the forward, heel on the forward)? And if so, which would you recommend? Or should I return my TLT speeds and get some TLT vertical ST/FT bindings?

    Of course, only after I get my skis and bindings home to I notice the note that says only use these inserts with vertical ST/FT/comfort. Maybe this should be included on the on-line specification information? Thanks.

  23. Lou March 11th, 2011 6:47 am

    Jordy, use the front set of inserts and drill new holes for the heel unit. Do a careful mount job and use epoxy. So long as you’re not leaping off 74 foot cliffs the binding should hold up fine. This assuming your new holes will still be located in the Titanal binding reinforcement plate. If not, I don’t recommend doing the mount unless use of the skis is light duty.

  24. Keith de Wit December 23rd, 2011 11:32 am

    I am getting a pair of stokes with ST’s. A shop friend recommended WOOD GLUE in the inserts. Good idea?
    Also, any comment on the fore or aft toe position for a 310 BSL? It is right on the border but would be aft per the Dynafit guide.

  25. Lou December 23rd, 2011 12:37 pm

    Wood glue won’t hurt anything. Sounds weird however.

    I’d go for the position that puts you slightly aft.

    Lou

  26. Stacey January 27th, 2012 6:57 pm

    Hey!!
    I just got a pair of the Mustagh ATA superlight, with G3 Onyx bindings, and need to remount the bindings for a smaller boot. Do I need to fill in the holes?? If so, with what??? : )
    thanks

  27. Lou January 27th, 2012 7:34 pm

    I’d just squirt a bit of Gorilla glue in each hole, to prevent water from getting in there and freezing…

  28. Sebastian September 24th, 2013 7:34 am

    Hi Lou. I bought a pair of 169 manaslus with vertical st rental bindings.. and i have the option of buying a pair of tlt5P 30 mondo with 327mm sole… will they work? i know the limit is 323mm.. but the long track of the rental would help? thanks! saludos desde Chile!

  29. Lou Dawson September 24th, 2013 7:44 am

    Hi Sebastian, I’d say yes, the boot will fit the rental binding as you only need 4 more millimeters. That being said, you’re going to end up quite far back on the ski. How tall and what is your weight? Are you sure that short Manaslu is the correct ski for you? A 30 boot makes me wonder… Lou

  30. Sebastian September 24th, 2013 7:56 am

    i’m 5’10” and 165lbs. like them short for mountaineering. i’m more like a mondo 28,5 but i’ve heard tlt5s run a little short (of narrow)… 30 might be too much? the market here is very small so there not many options for boots. i also bougth a pair of 181cm k2 waybacks 2012 in case the manaslu feel too short; so i’ll decide after trying them. thanks!

  31. Lou Dawson September 24th, 2013 9:04 am

    Sabastian, yes, in my case I did have to upsize one shell size when I used TLT5 vs Dynafit Zzero.

    Dynafit boot size chart here:

    http://media.dynafit.com/PDF/Conversion_Chart_Boots.pdf

    The 30 will be huge… Look at the chart. If you’re normally a 28.5 that would be a 28.0/28.5 shell, for a shell upsize you’d only go to 29/29.5, not 30.

    Lou

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Welcome to Louis (Lou) Dawson's backcountry skiing information opinion website and e magazine. Lou's passion for the past 45 years has been alpinism, climbing, mountaineering and skiing -- along with all manner of outdoor recreation. He has authored numerous books and articles about backcountry skiing and is well known as the first person to ski down all 54 of Colorado's 14,000-foot peaks, otherwise known as the Fourteeners! Books and free back country news and information here, and tons of Randonnee rando telemark info.

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