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News

Salewa's new lightweight touring binding uses DuPont engineering polymers

Du Pont Engineering Polymers : 15 December, 2003  (Company News)
Salewa GmbH of Munich chose two DuPont engineering polymers, DuPont
With these high-performance materials, plus carbon fibre for the frame, Salewa’s designers have made the ‘pure’ one of the world’s lightest frame bindings; it weighs only 1 200 g, or about 500 g less than comparable bindings. This weight-saving makes climbing easier work for touring skiers.

Safety was also a major consideration in the development of the ‘pure’: all the highly stressed plastics parts were designed with a safety factor of 3.

Salewa’s designers chose UV-stabilised Delrin® for three parts: the rear swivel grip, the front sliding plate and the heel release lever. For six other parts they selected 30 per cent glass-reinforced Zytel®: the front sole retainer, the front swivel head, the release slide and its cover, the end-piece for the frame and the locking piece for the climbing aid.

“We picked Delrin® for its durability, stiffness, impact resistance and UV-resistance, even under –20 °C,” says Martin Schwaikl, product manager at Salewa and the person responsible for the development of this model. “These material properties are essential, especially for highly stressed parts such as those in the heel block.”

The DuPont acetal has a very low friction coefficient. This ensures that the sideways and frontal release functions are virtually friction-free and work irrespectively of the structure of the shoe-sole. The glass-reinforced Zytel® nylon offers a balanced combination of impact resistance to strength (5800 MPA at 23 °C and 50 per cent r.h.).

To give greater comfort when walking, a further improvement in the binding’s design was achieved by moving the pivot point to correspond with the ergonomic roll-off point, which lies 30 mm behind the toe of the shoe. The binding fits any shoe. “With the new ‘pure’ binding we succeeded in improving the patented pivot point of our ‘Easy-Go’ products yet further,” Schwaikl adds. “Compared to our previous bindings, this means a further economy of effort for touring skiers.”

At the ISPO exhibition for the winter season 2003/2004, Silvretta’s ‘pure’ won the Outdoor Awards section in the hardware class. The jury’s criteria were innovativeness, functionality, quality and technical solutions, user-friendliness, ease of use and design.
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