Hey Lou & WildSnow.com,
I was hoping you could hook me up with a solution to a boot problem. Briefly, my boots are four years old now and the toe rubber is worn to the point where it is difficult to engage the binding. When I try to step into the binding, it doesn’t close unless I make multiple tries. Lots of fiddling at the start of skin tracks. I thought either I would grind it down and glue some new rubber in place or build a little mold around the toe with tape and fill it with black plastic rubber or some other similar product. Before committing to either I was hoping you had already been there and could provide me with the most elegant solution?
Indeed, sometimes folks have trouble with their Dynafit or other brand tech (pintech) binding toe closing properly. The most common cause is ice in your boot toe sockets (clean with a sharp object, and make a few stationary touring strides to allow the “pins” to cut their way through any ice or gradoo.) Still another and less obvious cause is ice or packed snow in the cavity UNDER the toe wings. Check for that as well.
Yet another determinant is more mechanical and tougher to fix, that of the boot not having enough sole thickness to trigger binding closure (the problem Brian shares above). One solution is to build up a bit of thickness on your boot toe using something like Shoe Gu, but this wears off quickly. Best is indeed to have your boots resoled. A temporary fix is to build a tiny pad of duct tap on the binding trigger. My favorite solution used here at WildSnow.com? Add a smidgen of height to the trigger using a dab of JB Weld epoxy. Beauty of this is it holds up well, but is fully reversible with the flick of a pocket knife blade. Check it out:
Beware this epoxy solution is specific to one pair of boots with sole wear. If other folks with fresh boots try to click into the binding it’ll snap closed too early.
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.