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lisevolution 12-05-2010 08:40 PM

2011 Cinch CTX First Impression
I was able to get the bindings onto my Rome Flag for the first runs of the season on Saturday and i wanted to share first impressions from someone who was convinced he was going to hate rear-entry bindings and also specifically has been anti-cinch for a long time.

Ok first let me say that I think it was somewhat silly for K2 to remove the actual ratchet on the toe for this years Cinch's. I get that it's sort of a set and forget type of binding, but without this simple element which they did have last year it makes setting these up a much bigger PITA than it actually needs to be. Even with that though it's definitely not that bad it just takes a little bit longer than it really could.

Now first impression of strapping into these was that they felt about as longitudinally responsive as my Union Data's and sort of in that all-mountain range. Not too soft but not too stiff either. Laterally they were definitely softer than the Data's though. I'm thinking that has more to do with the design than the actualy construction or materials but it wsa definitely noticble. I didn't find it affecting my performance at all but I could tell.

The ankle straps are actually a lot more comfortable than you'd expect them to be when looking at them. They're definitely minimalistic in design and it's because of this that they form very well to my boot and allow for them to be responsive yet comfortable with no noticeable pressure points thus far. The toe is pretty much not noticeable IMO, they work, they're there, they don't slip up the toe which is a nice change from the Data's which were a couple of seasons old and were plagued by toe strap slippage.

The ease of entry alone to me was worth the price of admission. Now it's not that I can't bend over and strap in on regular bindings...but I've got some pretty major back issues so the less getting up and down the better. Also I ride a lot with skiers so it makes it super quick to get off the lift, pop your foot in and then flip the clip up in the back and you're ready to ride. I have mine set pretty tight so it does take some effort to get them to clip up but nothing crazy and still way quicker and easier than regular bindings.

I didn't really notice any advantage to the canted footbeds but the harshmellow in them definitely did a good job helping to damp out the ride. Especially since I was riding 100% man made crap with death cookies abound it was nice to know that even under these conditions my knees weren't taking the beating they have with other bindings I've used.

Overall after the first day of testing these out I found them to be worth the investment and I'm glad I went with these over the flows because I like the feel of traditional strap bindings versus flows I-strap. The only major knock I have is that lack of toe ratchet which I did know about and is seriously not a problem because I'm pretty sure I have the toes dialed in where I want them already. If your looking for a rear-entry binding but want traditional straps give the Cinch's a try I think you'll be happy with what you get.

I'll update as I ride these more and give further impressions. I'm putting them on my 2011 Legacy for next weekends trip to Killington so I'm interested to see how they ride on that board and if there's any changes in my opinion of them.

KIRKRIDER 12-07-2010 03:51 PM

Agree with you...and love my CTXs. I have the 2009/10, they do have both ratchets. I usually set them up before the first run, and I'm good all day. Srapping in takes about 5 seconds standing. No need to sit on my ass anymore, which is great.

lisevolution 02-02-2011 12:46 PM

So I just wanted to update this thread with some more insight and a question for other Cinch users about whether or not they ever have had the same issue I'm having...

So after putting some more time on these including 5 days in deep snow and some pretty gnarly terrain at Vail last month I'm definitely impressed with these bindings. The lack of the true toe ratchet has proven to pretty much be a non-issue because I haven't needed to touch it since I got it adjusted properly. That said I still think it's stupid that it doesn't have it. Every trip I've been on with the exception of 1 has been with skiers thus far this winter and the amount of time I've saved with these has been great. Overall the response longitudinally is solid. It's not at the same level as say a Targa or SPi etc. but I'd say it compares favorably to the response of my Union Datas. The lateral flex though definitely leaves something to be desired. It could be just because I'm a bigger guy that it feels like it's lacking but the system does seem to have a large amount of play side to side because of the way it's designed. Would I buy these again? Yes, they've met the goals I have set for them and outside of a couple of small things they've been what I was expecting.

The only thing I've been having an issue with at times is the cable popping out of the "channel" between the highback and the heel-cup. It's not the biggest deal as I can just open again and pop it back in but it's another one of those small annoying things with this binding. Has anyone else had this problem???

KIRKRIDER 02-02-2011 03:25 PM

No, not with the cable. Only issue has been the toe strap popping open sometimes, but that's because of drag when I skate probably.
Can you order 09/10 toe ratchets for yours? I find the double system (back and straps) useful in powder, but I used the strap once to get the deep stuff...other than that they work great...besides the almost unused straps to be hard ot open at times.

lisevolution 02-08-2011 11:42 AM

I definitely had one circumstance when I was out in Vail that I had to actually strap in... there was like 3 feet of fresh in the back bowls and there was no way I was getting in the back. The straps are definitely not as easy as my wife's Autos are to open close but I actually didn't have too much of an issue with the toe strap because I ride it as a cap anyway so I pretty much just put my foot in and forced the toe over the top. But that right there is why it seems so silly to me that they took off the toe ratchet...

I think I figured out what my issue with the cable is. I rotated my highbacks but I never adjusted the cable tension like they tell you to do if you were to adjust the forward lean. I was looking at them last night and noticed that it's definitely an uneven pull now which is probably what's causing the cable to pop out of the guide on me from time to time. It usually only happens on the first run of the day after I have the highbacks folded down from the day before. I'll try to screw with it tonight and see if adjusting the cable tension makes a difference at all.

KIRKRIDER 02-08-2011 05:49 PM

they do align funny if you don't pay attention sometimes....The cables I mean. But other than that I love those bindings. Strapping in is so much faster.

lisevolution 02-10-2011 07:25 AM

I agree...overall I'm definitely happy with them especially when I'm riding with skiers. I'll probably try to grab a pair of Auto Evers in the off-season if I can find a good price and see which I like better overall. I've demoed Evers but it's different to ride a few days on them so you can really see the quirks. My wife is riding the Auto a Go-Go's from last season and once she got used to them she fell in love. She still has issues getting out of them as quick as she gets in but I think that mostly has to do with a combination of lack of use and her using the toe strap as a more traditional style rather than as a cap...

KG29 02-10-2011 07:42 PM


All I read about the 2010 model was they were heavy, have they changed that.

Also I do want to ask about getting into them,Do you every-time after getting of the chair lift need to adjust the straps or can you just slide your boot in clip it up and ride away.

Can this be done when riding of the chair lift too,they make the drops HUGH around here getting of the chair.

I've had it with always siting on my azz to put my boot into my bindings,the straps always get in my way.

I also can't stand and bend over and put my boots into the bindings,being everything is-in the way.

The K2's and the flows I'm really thinking about,being I just starting snowboarding again after 5 years,and was always a fan of snap in bindings with the high back.

KIRKRIDER 02-10-2011 07:48 PM

Try them...I weighted them against a pair of Cartels...pretty much the same. Of course bindings like RIDE contraband are way lighter...

No need to adjust the straps at just pull the highback up...Unless the straps were too tight and you like to loose them up in the chair ride?

You can strap on the chair if you're alone...but it takes 5 seconds to strap in, no ass sit required.

No I don'rt work for K2 ( I wish! )

lisevolution 03-03-2011 12:38 PM

Ok, the more and more I ride these bindings the less I like them...As I have put more days on them here on the east coast I'm begining to really dislike a few things about them. First the lateral flex which I did say seemed soft at first is really starting to make me concerned. Maybe it's because I'm a big dude and I'm putting a lot of pressure on them but I'm just really starting to question the durability... I feel like I'm going to snap them one of these days. I haven't been able to completely eliminate the issue of them locking in right and actually had to deal with fixing this after getting off the lift and stepping twice on the trip up to Jay Peak last weekend with the rest of the group for the east coast meet. I'm thinking I may try to return these to dogfunk and pick myself up a different set of bindings for next season...

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