We’ve always had a ski quiver that rivaled the arrow selection of a Shoshone hunter. And never enough bindings for them all. So using different skis frequently involves time consuming binding swaps. Hence, I’ve always been interested in binding attachment “insert” systems such as the inserts K2 provided for a few seasons in their telemark skis. Thing is, with the vast combination of binding models and boot sizes, no commercial insert system could work that well at this juncture in binding and ski design. Enter the aftermarket.
Quiver Killer makes and sells a facile do-it-yourself insert system. After doing an install myself, conclusion is if you’re handy with tools and have a functional workbench system you can put inserts in skis. But the process is probably a 7 on the 1-10 DIY scale, so my advice is give your insert project to a professional ski mechanic unless you’re used to doing things like binding mounts yourself. Follow along.
I’m happy with how quick and relatively easy the Quiver Killer install process was. Once you’ve done it once, the work really shouldn’t take much longer than a regular binding mount. Downsides are few, but exist. Mainly, the inserts take up a lot of real estate, thus making it more difficult to place additional binding holes in your ski for other types of bindings, or for changing binding position for and aft. Another concern is that the machine screws don’t have as much side-to-side stability as an epoxied binding screw. Thus, it is important to tighten them enough (but not too much), and perhaps locate a few dabs of epoxy under the toe unit and corners of the heel unit to give a bit more sideways stability (that’s just theory, and perhaps unnecessary). The process is somewhat forgiving. For example, you can remove the inserts by heating to soften the epoxy then rotating out with an easy-out.
I’m looking forward to installing inserts in more of our quiver, thus saving time with our seemingly endless binding swaps.
(One tip: While doing this I discovered that one of the bushings on my Dynafit binding jig is off by a millimeter or so (in the rear, so it throws off the angle of the heel unit unless I’m careful. Disappointing. Next time I’ll probably use my paper template for the heel. If the paper template is used with care and a sharp center punch, it is easily as accurate as a mechanical jig.)
WildSnow.com publisher emeritus and founder Lou (Louis Dawson) has a 50+ years career in climbing, backcountry skiing and ski mountaineering. He was the first person in history to ski down all 54 Colorado 14,000-foot peaks, has authored numerous books about about backcountry skiing, and has skied from the summit of Denali in Alaska, North America’s highest mountain.