BCA Introduces Naxo Ski Touring Backcountry Binding to North American Market


Post by WildSnow.com blogger | July 8, 2003      

Editor’s note: Naxo binding is discontinued as of 2009, content preserved for historical reference. Portions of this article are sourced from a press release.

See our complete Naxo FAQ and information index.

Year 2003
Naxo nx01 is a high-performance AT binding from Switzerland with a full alpine toepiece, maximum DIN setting of 12, and an innovative “virtual rotation system” that improves stride ergonomics while touring and allows the use of a full size alpine-like toe. Beginning this year, Backcountry Access (Boulder, Colorado) will do North American distribution of the Naxo line.

Naxo binding in touring mode, showing double toe pivot at first stage of stride. The double pivot allows a somewhat natural stride, but more, it allows the use of a full size alpine-like toe. The binding weighs about the same as a Diamir Freeride, and is sold with brakes. Heel lifter is designed so that the binding can not accidently switch to touring mode while alpine skiing -- a concern of some hard cores.

Naxo binding in touring mode, showing double toe pivot at first stage of stride. The double pivot allows a somewhat natural stride, but more, it allows the use of a full size alpine-like toe. The binding weighs about the same as a Diamir Freeride, and is sold with brakes. Heel lifter is designed so that the binding can not accidently switch to touring mode while alpine skiing — a concern of some hard cores.

The binding was developed by Naxo AG of Thun, Switzerland, a company founded in 2001 by former managers at alpine touring manufacturer, Fritschi AG. Naxo was introduced to the European market during the 2002-03 season.

Naxo pivot allows virtually unencumbered forward movement, even with a long alpine-like toe unit. At the least, this will prevent any chance of ripping the binding out of the ski during a forward fall while touring.

Naxo pivot allows virtually unencumbered forward movement, even with a long alpine-like toe unit. At the least, this will prevent any chance of ripping the binding out of the ski during a forward fall while touring.

The crux of the Naxo design is its beefy toepiece and a unique touring (heel lift) pivot system. By providing two pivot points, one beneath and one in front of the toepiece, the system allows for a full-sized alpine-style toe conforming to DIN standards for both alpine/downhill and alpine touring boots. It also creates a more rounded gait, reducing the “Frankenstein” stride often experienced with existing AT plate bindings, according to McGowan. In addition, the heel piece locks down in such a way that it cannot prerelease due to flex of the ski, an the touring heel lifter can’t be inadvertently raised while downhill skiing (WildSnow editor’s note: a problem some people claim other bindings have, and we’ve seen some evidence of but nothing to be particularly alarmed about). Binding length and spring tension at the toe and heel can be adjusted quickly, making it ideal for rental use or swapping between partners during an expedition.



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  • Welcome to Louis (Lou) Dawson's backcountry skiing information & opinion website. Lou's passion for the past 50 years has been alpinism, climbing, mountaineering and skiing -- along with all manner of outdoor recreation. He has authored numerous books and articles about ski touring 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 ski touring news and information here.

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