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Measuring for Binding Screws, Drill Bits and Taps

DSC05554Whether you lost a screw, adding shims, have a tear out or want to swap bindings between multiple skis, we have any array of ski binding screw options to help you do it yourself.

Please note it is impossible for us be on top of every screw head type, length, shims, cants, rail system, and nuances for every binding and situation. So please try to resolve screw by going through the steps below issues prior to calling or emailing.
See more Binding Topics for more insights on mounting, binding and screw questions.

The Binding Freedom machine screw chart is a reference that may help you compare lengths and head types.

Here are some tips to help you answer your own questions regarding Drill Bits:

  • By CE regulation, all current skis have the recommended drill size printed on the ski, either in the mounting area, on the adjacent sidewall or on the tail with the ski dimensions. If there are no drill sizes provided on the ski (ie, custom skis), contacting the manufacturer for their recommendations is your best course of action. If unsure, drill with 3.5mm diameter tip. If metal is present, then use a 4.1mm bit.
  • The general rule on alpine ski drill bit sizes is 3.5mm for non-metal skis and 4.1 for metal. There are exceptions, such as a metal binding plate in a non-metal ski, carbon fiber top sheets, etc
  • The outside diameter of an alpine screw thread is just over 5mm. The inside diameter of the screw thread (shank) is just over 4mm which matches the tip of a 4.1 diameter bit. Softer materials such as wood or plastic will compress when driving a screw into a 3.5mm hole. Non-compressible materials like metal and carbon should be drilled with the larger diameter, 4.1mm hole so the shank does not compress and damage the material while being driven into the ski.
  • Binding Freedom & Quiver Killer stainless steel inserts & heli-coils require a 1/4″ tipped bit.
  • The minimum depth for a screw for a binding mount is 6mm/1/4″. Measure the screw less the binding thickness will provide you minimum drill tip length.
  • It is better to err towards a longer tip than one shorter than the embedded screw section length so the bindings can lay tight to the ski.
  • Make sure this will not exceed the thickness of the ski or snow board.
  • The excess depth of a hole deeper than the length of screw will be filled with the glue.
  • Long shank alpine drill bits are 1 3/4″ (4.5cm) longer than standard bits for use mounting jigs and drill guides.


Here are some tips to help you answer your own questions regarding measuring Binding Screws:

  • Screws are relatively cheap and can be modified to some degree. Order additional lengths and types if in doubt.
  • Flathead Screws are measured from tip to top. Pan heads, buttons and sockets are measured from tip to bottom of the head.
  • Older skis probably used longer screws as the skis were thicker and newer skis typically require shorter screws.
  • The thread pitch is unique to binding screws and optimized for skis and snowboards. A typical hardware store machine screw is NOT a recommended alternative.
  • Tapping metal top sheets or mounting plates is highly recommended. Some also recommend tapping non-metal top sheets.
  • Glue can fill in a deeper hole than screw length.
  • Minimum screw depth is 6mm/4 thread bite into ski, Typical hole drilling depths required by ski manufacturer range from 7.5 to 9.5mm. Look for recommended drill depth on the ski or manufacturer’s literature.
  • The alpine screw heads are 10mm and can be ground to a smaller diameter. Place the screw in a plastic anchor in a drill chuck. Secure the drill and while spinning the screw, hold a stone or diamond against the head.
  • If you need longer screws, stainless steel inserts for M5 x .8mm pitch machine screws are an excellent option

Alternatives and procedures for measuring. Calipers are best and have depth gauges. Measure depth of toothpick, nail, screw, etc inserted into :

  • Measure existing screw if available
  • Measure existing hole diameters
  • Measure thickness of binding at screw location
  • Place screws in bindings to help determine binding thickness and screw projection
  • Measure hole depths.
  • Is the screw a flathead, tapered or have a shoulder (panhead)?
  • Place non-alpine screws with similar heads types into bindings as measuring aids.


Here are some tips to help you answer your own questions regarding measuring Alpine, Stainless Steel Inserts & Heli Coil Taps:

  • Tapping skis with metal and carbon top sheets using a 12AB tap is recommended. Tapping all holes regardless of topsheet type or drill tip diameter is recommended. The same tap works for 3.5mm & 4.1mm diameter holes.




(More to come)

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Not much has really changed since 1941

The more things change, the more things remain the same…..but get more complicated and expensive.

For training USA mountain troops in 1941. In this segment, we learn how to choose the proper ski length, how to choose and take care of boots, how to adjust bindings, how to care for ski edges and ski bottoms. Alan Ladd is one of the recruits.

 This clip from the Classic Film: The Basic Principles of Skiing

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Ski Binding Templates thanks to Powderguide

Bohrschablone_Marker_KingpinHow’s your German? Knut from and Forum has been producing ski binding templates for a number of years. His list is pasted below. Check out their site for other information and thank him for his efforts.

It is highly recommended that you practice by drilling and mounting using old skis or a scrap wood board before drilling your skis. This also can help you confirm the templates are accurate. See a ski binding pro for proper release settings.


If you haven’t done so, please also check out the following topics before proceeding:

-Drilling Skis to Mount Bindings
-Finding Your Ski’s Centerline
-Paper Ski Binding Templates
-Drill and Tap Guides for Hand Drilling

Get yourself set up with Binding Mounting Tools, Screws, glues and supplies. If you’d rather use a jig versus dealing with the nuances and complexities of paper templates, check out the Jigarex Mounting Jigs.

The following is current as of 11/10/15. The links and available templates may not include any revisions to the templates or recent additions. Double check here if in doubt:

Vergleich der Bohrlochpositionen für verschiedene Bindungen

FFG: siehe Salomon Alpinbindungen
Tracker: siehe Salomon Guardian
STH2 WTR: siehe Salomon

Diamir (Freeride, Titanal etc. vor 2009/2010)
Freeride Pro & Eagle (für S & XL nicht getestet)
Vipec(noch nicht verifiziert)

Vertical TLT, Speed
Radical 2.0(noch nicht verifiziert)
Beast 14
Beast 16

Onyx – siehe Dynafit Vertical TLT

siehe Tyrolia

Look: (siehe auch Rossignol)
Pivot (vor 2005)
Pivot (Typ Rossi FKS)
PX Racing (noch nicht getestet)
(Achtung: nicht die alte Pivot/Axial mit der neuen Pivot/FKS verwechseln. Auch wenn die völlig unverständlicherweise bei Look gleich heissen, sind das zwei grundunterschiedliche Bindungen)

Duke, Baron, Tour
Duke EPF
Jester, Griffon, Squire, Lord (inkl. Demo&Schizo)(für Schizo nicht getestet) -nicht für Schizo Frantic!
M Series
Free Ten & M11.0 TC EPS (für letztere nicht überprüft)

NX01, NX 21

Guide -siehe Dynafit Vertical TLT (aber Vorsicht: Lochweiten-Toleranzen der Plum sind ein klein wenig anders!)

Axial Race (noch nicht getestet)

alle Alpinbindungen bis 2013, aktuelle STH und Z Modelle
STH2 und Warden
Rental SC
MTN(noch nicht verifiziert)

siehe Salomon

alle Bindungen

siehe (tlws.) Salomon

Feedback zu den Schablonen ist auch herzlich willkommen -und wenn es nur ein kurzes “hat alles gepasst” ist.



Black Diamond
O1 (Originalschablone des Herstellers)

Targa T9 (Originalschablone des Herstellers)
Targa Ascent (Originalschablone des Herstellers)

NTN Freeride & Freedom (Originalschablone des Herstellers)


Weitere Quellen für Bohrschablonen:

jondrums’ Schablonen im Tetongravity Forum

Schablonen auf (grösstenteils identisch mit denen auf TGR)

wildsnow auf dieser exzellenten aber leider sehr unübersichtliche Seite gibt es auch Bohrschablonen. Leider gibt es keine Seite, auf der die Schablonen gesammelt wären. Man muss sie also einzeln suchen. Auch sind sie nicht die genauesten.


Hersteller-bezogene Links mit nützlichen Informationen

Black Diamond:
Bindungspositionen für BD Ski – Alpin & telemark inkl. detaillierter Tipps für die Montage

Montage- und Einstellungsanleitung des Herstellers 04/05
Montageanleitung auf
FAQ auf

Bedienungsanleitung des Herstellers

Onyx Montage- und Installationsanleitung des Herstellers
Onyx Bedienungsanleitung des Herstellers

Bindungspositionen für S-Serie Ski
Binding Tech Manual 2014-15
Tipps zum Stopperaufbiegen von FKS/Pivot/Axial1 von campagnard auf

Ski Binding Regulations, Shp Practices, Spare Parts & Manual 2015-16

Montage- & Bedienungsanleitung des Herstellers


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JigaRex™ Universal Ski Binding Mount Jig System

UPDATE: Dynafit Radical 2.0 & Marker Kingpin Mount Plates are now available.

universal-ski-jigThe Pliny Equipment JigaRex Binding Jig System clamps to the side of skis and helps you quickly align the boot sole center on the ski mount point. JigaRex interchangeable binding plates are purchased separately for specific binding types and are easily seated on the Universal Jig for your favorite alpine, backcountry and telemark bindings.

Click here for the currently available binding plates.

Following are a few videos to show the basic function and operation of the JigaRex Universal Binding Mount Jig:

JigaRex™ Videos

Quick Overview

JigaRex™ Self-Centering Clamps Operation and Demonstration

Proper Usage of JigaRex Mounting Plates

Guardian Bindings with the JigaRex™

Dynafit Bindings with the JigaRex™

If you use the JigaRex™, as with any tool, it is your responsibility to ensure the quality and safety of work you do, as well as the safety of the bindings. It is highly recommended that a certified binding technician performs a binding check to verify proper release and function of ski bindings.

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Park Tools Adjustable Torque Wrench Info & Concepts Park Tool torque driver is useful in any toolbox. Generally, 1/4″ hex drivers are very versatile and compact since they can hold and drive an unlimited array of hex bits and sockets for all kinds of uses, including ski, snowboards & bikes. We’ve been looking for a torque driver that is not sport specific, adjustable for variety of ski, snowboard, bike and other times when a torque wrench is useful and found one in this tool.
Relative to skiing, it’s a huge bummer, can get spendy and time consuming repairing a spinning binding screw or cracking a top sheet.  Same for over tightening your nice carbon and lightweight bike components that you spent a lot of money to own. Many manufacturers recommend 4.5Nm for alpine binding screws.

  • Adjusts to apply 4, 4.5, 5, 5.5, or 6 Newton Meter (Nm) of torque when rotating clockwise
  • All metal internal construction for long life
  • Comfortable ergonomic composite molded grip
  • Includes 3mm, 4mm, 5mm and T25 bits (stored in handle)
  • ¼” drive, Magnetic socket retains bits

Note: a 6mm hex wrench is needed to adjust the torque. The tool is for driving only and NOT to be used for loosening screws.

For general information about torque wrenches, we’ve copied this information and video from the Park Tools site:


This article will discuss the basics of torque and torque wrench use. See also related article on Basic Thread Concepts. This article includes a table of various torque recommendations. The Bicycle Specific Torque Value Chart is also available as a PDF file.


Threaded fasteners (nuts and bolts) are used to hold many components to the bike. As a fastener is tightened, the fastener actually flexes and stretches, much like a rubber band. This stretching is not permanent, but it gives the joint force to hold together, called “preload”, or tension. Each fastener is designed for a certain range of tension. Too much tightening will deform the threads or the parts. Too little preload will mean the fastener will loosen with use. This can damage components, such as a crank ridden with a loose mounting bolt. Loose bolts and nuts are also generally the source of various creaking on the bike.

Tension in the fastener depends largely upon the amount of torque (tightening) and the size of the thread. Generally, engineers will specify a thread size large enough to handle the anticipated stresses. For example, the M5 bolt of a water bottle cage bolt would not be a good choice for holding a crank. Even if the bolt were as tight as possible, it would not provide enough force to hold the arm secure to the spindle. The crank-to-spindle interface receives quite a lot of stress, making larger threads (M8, M12, M14) a better choice. The amount of pressure applied by a thread can be substantial in order to hold the joint secure. For example, a fully tightened crank bolt can provide over 14,000 Newton force (3,000 pounds) as it holds the arm in place.

It is commonly believed that bolts and nuts often come loose for no apparent reason. However, the common cause for threaded fasteners loosening is simply lack of tension during initial assembly. Vibration, stress, use, or abuse cannot typically overcome the amount of clamping force in a properly sized and secured threaded fastener. As a simple rule of thumb, any fastener should be tightened as tight as possible without failure of the thread or the component parts. This means the weakest part of the joint determines the limits of tension, and hence, torque.


Torque for mechanics is simply a twisting or turning motion around the axis of the thread. This resistance can be correlated to, but is not a direct measurement of, fastener tension. Generally, the higher the rotational resistance, the greater tension in the threaded fastener. In other words, the more effort it takes to tighten a bolt, the tighter it is.

Torque is measured as a unit of force acting on a rotating lever of some set length. In the USA, the common unit used to measure torque is the inch-pound (abbreviated in-lb.). This is a force of one pound acting at the end of a lever (wrench) only one inch long. Another torque unit used in the USA is the foot-pound (abbreviated ft-lb.), which is the force in pounds along a one-foot long lever. It is possible to convert between the two units by multiplying or dividing by twelve. Because it can become confusing, it is best to stick to one designation. The units given on the torque table here will be the in-lb.

A more universally accepted torque measurement is the Newton-meter (abbreviated Nm). One Newton-meter is a force of one Newton on a meter long lever. Another option sometimes used is the Kilogram-centimeter (abbreviated kgf-cm), which is a kilogram of force acting on a lever one centimeter long. It is possible to convert between the various systems.

in-lb = ft-lb. × 12 EXAMPLE: 5.5 ft-lb × 12 = 66 in-lb
in-lb = Nm × 8.851 EXAMPLE: 9 Nm × 8.851 = 79.7 in-lb
in-lb = kgf-cm × 0.87 EXAMPLE: 300 kgf-cm × 0.87 = 261 in-lb


Torque wrenches are simply tools for measuring resistance to rotation. There is a correlation between the tension in the bolt and the effort it takes to turn it. Any tool, even a torque wrench, should be used with common sense. A cross-threaded bolt will not properly tighten even with a torque wrench. The mechanic must be aware of the purpose of torque, and what torque and fastener preload doing to the component joint. It is also important to consider thread preparation, which is discussed in detail at the end of this article.

Torque wrenches available to general industrial work, including bicycle work, are typically accurate to plus or minus four percent. In other words, a torque wrench set for 100 in-lbs might tighten to 96 in-lbs, or 104 in-lbs. There are basically three types of torque wrenches, the beam type, the click type and the dial type. The click type and dial type wrenches have more moving parts than the beam, and are susceptible to wear and will require re-calibration. The bicycle has relatively light torque specifications (20-inch pound) to relatively heavy torque specifications (600 inch-pound). There is no single torque wrench accurate for this wide range. Consequently, Park Tool offers two different wrenches.


Park Tool TW-1 and TW-2 torque wrenches are beam-type. The beam design is relatively simple, and is accurate for both left-hand and right-hand threading. The socket head holds two steel beams, a primary beam and an indicator or pointer beam. The primary beam deflects as the handle is pulled. The separate pointer beam remains un-deflected, and the primary beam below flexes and moves with the handle. The reading is taken at the end of the pointer, at the reading plate on the primary beam. The handle is moved until the desired reading is attained. These wrenches rarely require re-calibration. If the pointer needle is not pointing to zero when the tool is at rest, it is simply bent back until it does align. Fatigue in the steel is not an issue.

Beam Type Torque Wrench Calibration

It is possible for any torque wrench to come out of calibration. The beam type wrenches use a simple principle of deflection that allows the user to re-calibrate the wrench. Inspect the pointer when the wrench is at rest. If it is pointing to zero on the scale, the wrench is calibrated. If the pointer is off to either side, the pointer beam can be bent back so it again points at zero. It is easiest to use a lever between the two beams and pry small amounts, checking the scale and the pointer often.



Below is a table of torque equivalents and formulas for conversions follow the torque table. The table is also available as a PDF file HERE.

All figures in the table below are inch-pound. Note that some companies do not specify torque for certain components or parts. Contact the manufacturer for the most up to date specifications.


Spoke tension Torque is typically not used in wheels. Spoke tension is measured by deflection. Contact rim manufacturer for specific tension recommendations. See TM-1
Quick release-closed cam type Measured torque not typically used. Common industry practice is resistance at lever half way through swing from open to fully closed. For more see Tire and Tube Removal and Installation.
Axle nuts to frame
(non-quick release type wheels)
260-390 Control Tech® 65 (steel)
Control Tech® 85 (titanium)
SRAM® 266-350
Cassette sprocket lockring 260-434 Campagnolo® 442
SRAM® 310-350
Hub cone locking nut 87-217 Bontrager® 150
Chris King® 100
Freehub body 305-434 Bontrager® 400


Component Shimano® in-lb. Other in-lb.
Threaded headset
Chris King® Gripnut type 130-150
Tange-Seiki® 217
Stem binder bolt- quill type for threaded headsets 174-260 Control Tech® 144-168
Stem steering column binder bolts
Threadless headset types
Control Tech® 120-144
Deda 71
FSA® carbon 78
Syncros® cotter bolt type 90
Thomson® 48
Time® Monolink 45
Stem handlebar binder
1 or 2 binder bolts
174-260 Control Tech® 120-144
Stem handlebar binder
4 binder bolts
Control Tech® 120-144
Deda magnesium 71
Thomson® 48
FSA® OS-115 carbon 78
Time® Monolink 53
MTB handle bar end extensions Cane Creek® 70
Control Tech® 144
Seat rail binder 174-347 Control Tech®, 2 bolt type 144
Control Tech®, single bolt 300
Syncros® each 45
Time® Monolink-44
Travativ® (M8 bolt) 195-212 / 53-63 ( M6 bolt)
Seat post binder
Note: Seat posts require only minimal tightening to not slip downward. Avoid over tightening.
Campagnolo® 36-60


Component Shimano® in-lb. Other in-lb.
Pedal into crank 307 minimum Campagnolo® 354
Ritchey® 307
Truvativ® 276-300
Shimano® Octalink XTR crankarm bolts (M15 thread) (not Hollowtech II) 357-435
Shimano® Hollowtech II bottom bracket bearing cup (2004 XTR, XT, Dura-Ace) 305-435
Shimano® Hollowtech II crank bolt screws (2004 XTR, Dura-Ace, XT) 88-132
Shimano® Hollowtech II
Left-hand fixing cap
Crank bolt (including spline-type cranks and square-spindle cranks) 305-391 Bontrager® 310-380
FRA® (M8 bolt) 304-347
FRA® (M14 steel) 434-521
Race Face® 480
Truvativ® 384-420 ISIS Drive
Truvativ® 336-372 square type White Ind® 240-300
Crank bolt one-key release cap 44-60 Truvativ® 107-124
Chainring cassette to crankarm (lockring) 443-620
Chainring bolt – steel 70-95 Campagnolo® 84-120
Race Face® 100
Truvativ® 107-124
Chainring bolt – aluminum 44-88 Truvativ® 72-80
Bottom bracket
adjustable type
Bottom bracket cartridge type 435-608 White Ind.® 240
Real 432-612
Campagnolo® 612
FSA® 347-434
Race Face® 420
Truvativ® 300-360


Component Shimano® in-lb. Other in-lb.
STI type shift lever binder 53-69
Shift lever – MTB “thumb type” 22-26
Shift lever – “twist grip” type “Revo” shifter 53-70 SRAM® 17
Front Derailleur clamp mount 44-60 Campagnolo® 61
Mavic® 26-35
SRAM® 44-60
Front derailleur cable pinch 44-60 Campagnolo® 44
Mavic® 44-62
SRAM® 40
Rear derailleur mounting bolt 70-86 SRAM® 70-85
Campagnolo® 133
Rear derailleur cable inch bolt 35 Campagnolo® 53
SRAM® 35-45
Rear derailleur pulley wheel bolt 27-34 Sachs® 44-53


Component Shimano® in-lb. Other in-lb.
Brake caliper mount to frame, side/dual/center pull 70-85 Campagnolo® 90
Cane Creek® 68-72
Brake caliper mount to braze-on
linear pull/cantilever
44-60 Avid® 43-61
Control Tech® 100-120
SRAM® 45-60
Brake pad – threaded stud, dual pivot/cantilever/sidepull 44-60 Avid® 52-69
Cane Creek® 56-60
Campagnolo® 72
Mavic® 62-80
SRAM® 50-70
Brake pad – smooth stud, cantilever 70-78
Brake cable pinch bolt – linear pull/cantilever 53-69 Control Tech® 40-60
SRAM® 50-70
Brake cable pinch bolt –
sidepull/dual pivot/centerpull
53-69 Campagnolo® 45
Cane Creek® 68-72
Mavic® 62-80
Brake caliper arm pivot- dual pivot 70-86 Cane Creek® 72-84
Sidepull/dual pivot brake pad bolt 44-60 Cane Creek® 56-60
Cantilever straddle wire pinch 5 x 0.8 thread 35-43 Control Tech® 40-60
Brake caliper wire pinch
linear pull/cantilever
M6 x 1 thread
50-75 Avid® 52-69
Brake lever – MTB type 53-69 Avid® 40-60 (clamping built into body)
Avid® strap type 28-36
Cane Creek® 53-80
SRAM® 30
Brake lever-drop bar type
(including STI and Ero types)
53-69 Campagnolo® 88
Mavic® 62-80


Component Shimano® in-lb. Other in-lb.
Disc rotor to hub 18-35 (M5 bolts)
350 (M965 rotor locking)
Hayes® 50
Caliper mount 53-69 Avid® 80-90
Magura® 51
Hydraulic hose fittings 44-60 Hayes® 55

Formulas for converting other torque designations into Netwon meter (Nm) and inch pounds (in-lb.):

  • Nm = in-lb x 0.113
  • Nm= ft-lb x 1.356
  • Nm= kg-cm x 0.0981
  • in-lb = ft-lb × 12
  • in-lb = Nm × 8.851
  • in-lb = kgf-cm x 0.87


Inch pound
Approximate Foot pound
Approximate Newton Meter
10 0.8 1.1
20 1.7 2.3
30 2.5 3.4
40 3.3 4.5
50 4.2 5.6
60 5.0 6.8
70 5.8 7.9
80 6.7 9.0
90 7.5 10.2
100 8.3 11.3
110 9.2 12.4
120 10.0 13.6
130 10.8 14.7
140 11.7 15.8
150 12.5 16.9
160 13.3 18.1
170 14.2 19.2
180 15.0 20.3
190 15.8 21.5
200 16.7 22.6
210 17.5 23.7
220 18.3 24.9
230 19.2 26.0
240 20.0 27.1
250 20.8 28.2
260 21.7 29.4
270 22.5 30.5
280 23.3 31.6
290 24.2 32.8
300 25.0 33.9
310 25.8 35.0
320 26.7 36.2
330 27.5 37.3
340 28.3 38.4
350 29.2 39.5
360 30.0 40.7
370 30.8 41.8
380 31.7 42.9
390 32.5 44.1
400 33.3 45.2
410 34.2 46.3
420 35.0 47.5
430 35.8 48.6
440 36.7 49.7
450 37.5 50.8
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Binding Freedom Pozi Screw Lengths

BFsmall_headFollowing is a ‘guide’ for determining required M5 pozi machine
screws for Binding Freedom
(or Quiver Killer stainless steel
inserts). Measure and self-verify screw lengths needed. If in doubt purchase addition lengths and back ups. Longer screws can be ground to shorter lengths if needed.

Here is a ‘cheat sheet’ showing Binding Freedom Pozi-Drive Screws and how to measure them correctly.

(from Binding Freedom, U.N.O., as of 10/20/15.)

Tips on Measuring your bindings for screw lengths

-Smallhead screws are measured as the total length of the screw less 2mm, while lowhead screws are measured as the length of just the threads

-Fasteners should protrude 4mm MIN and 6mm MAX into a threaded insert.

-To determine the idea fastener length, press an existing screw into the binding hole. Make sure it has bottomed out in its hole. Measure how far it protrudes below the base of the binding.

-Measure the screw itself as well. Subtract the protrusion length from the length of the screw. Add 5mm to that length. Find the closest size fastener that is within 1mm of that number. In this example, 13mm – 9mm + 5mm = 9mm. Either an 8mm or 10mm flathead would be appropriate for this binding.

22 Designs:
•16 – 10mm low heads

❅-Garmont tour
•8 – 18mm small heads
❅-Power tour
•4 – 20mm small heads (new small heads length will be released this winter to address the lack of this size – you can source your own M5 screw for now)
•4 – 18mm small heads
•4 – 14mm small heads

❅No fit – the binding uses a stepped screw that we currently can not match.

❅ O1
•14 – 14mm small heads

❅-Toe Plates
•8 – 12mm small heads
❅-Heel lengths will vary per binding.  Add 6mm length to the M5 screw needed for your bindings heel screws.

•10 – 16mm small heads
•8 – 10mm lowheads
❅-Vertical ST
•10 – 16mm small heads
•8 – 10mm low heads
❅-Vertical FT
•8 – 12mm small heads
•10 – 16mm small heads
❅-Radical ST/FT
•8 – 16mm small heads
•8 – 10mm low heads
❅-Speed Turn/Speed Radical
•10 – 12mm small heads
•8 – 10mm low heads
❅-TLT Speed
•10 – 10mm small heads
•8 – 10mm low heads
❅-Beast 14
•8 – 12mm small heads
•8 – 14mm small heads
❅-Beast 14 (Binding Freedom screws are not compatible with this binding.  We are currently trying to produce a new screw with pozi head that will function with this binding.  This screw is still in the production phase and for now you will have to source your own M5 thread screws from a hardware store)
❅-8 – 12mm small heads
❅-8 – 14mm small heads
❅-Dynafit Beast 16 (Binding Freedom screws are not compatible with this binding.  We are currently trying to produce a new screw with pozi head that will function with this binding.  This screw is still in the production phase and for now you will have to source your own M5 thread screws from a hardware store)
•4 – 10mm countersunk flat heads with head diameter reduced to 8mm
•8 – 16mm countersunk flat heads with head diameter reduced to 8mm
•8 – 12mm countersunk flat heads with head diameter reduced to 8mm
❅-Dynafit Radical 2 ST & FT
•16 – 14mm small heads with head diameter reduced to 8mm

•14 – 8mm small heads
❅-Freeride +
•10 – 10mm small heads
•6 – 16mm small heads
•14 – 12mm small heads
•8 – 12mm small heads
•6 – 16mm small heads
•8 – 12mm small heads
•6 – 16mm small heads
•8 – 8mm small heads
•6 – 12mm small heads
❅-Vipec 12
•8 – 10mm small heads
•8 – 12mm low heads (coming soon)

•12 – 14mm small heads
•12 – 12mm small heads
•8 – 10mm small heads
•4 – 12mm small heads
•4 – 18mm small heads
•10 – 8mm small heads
•8 – 10mm low heads
•8 – 12mm (or 14mm) small heads
•8 – 10mm (or 12mm, cut from 16mm) low heads

❅-7tm Power Tour
•4 – 14mm small heads
•8 – 18mm small heads

•20 – 10mm flat heads (screw coming soon – if ordering for this binding its best to source your own 10mm counter sunk screws.  Our Small head screw gets in the way of the heel release function.  Our new flat head screw being introduced for next season will eliminate this problem)
❅-Pivot 18
•12 – 10mm low heads
•4 – 20mm low heads
❅-Pivot 14 (13/14 and newer)
•8 – 18mm small heads
•4 – 10mm low heads
•4 – 16mm low heads
❅-Pivot 14 (12/13 and older
•4 – 14mm small heads
•4 – 16mm small heads
•4 – 10mm low heads
•4 – 16mm low heads
•4 – 14mm small heads
•4 – 16mm small heads
•4 – 8mm low heads
•4 – 22mm low heads
❅-PX12 Demo
•8 – 8mm small heads
•12 – 14mm small heads

•14 – 12mm small heads
•4 – 16mm small heads
•8 – 18mm small heads

❅-All Time
•8 – 8mm small heads
•8 – 10mm small heads

❅-Kingpin (Binding Freedom screws are not compatible with this binding.  We are currently trying to produce a new screw with pozi head that will function with this binding.  This screw is still in the production phase and for now you will have to source your own M5 thread screws from a hardware store)
•8 – 10mm countersunk flat heads with heads reduced to 8mm diameter
•6 – 12mm countersunk flat heads
•4 – 18mm countersunk flat heads
❅-Duke/Baron/F10/F12 (2011 & Newer)
-18 – 10mm small heads
❅-Duke/Baron/F10/F12 (2010 & Older)
•16 – 10mm small heads
•2 – 8mm low heads
❅-Lord SP14
•8 – 8mm small heads
•4 – 8mm low heads
•4 – 16mm low heads
•10 – 10mm small heads
•8 – 8mm low heads
❅-Jester, Griffon or Squire (H18mm AFD’s & H10 x L200mm heel base plate):
•8 – 8mm small heads
•4 – 16mm small heads
•4 – 8mm low heads
❅-Jester Pro 18, Jester, Griffon or Squire (H21mm AFD’s & H13 x L240mm heel base plate):
-4 – 16mm small heads
-12 – 8mm low heads

•16 – 10mm small heads
•8 – 10mm small heads
•8 – 12mm small heads

❅-FKS (With geze 4 hole toe)
•4 – 10mm small heads
•4 12mm small heads
•4 – 10mm low heads
•4 – 16mm low heads
•4 – 14mm small heads
•4 – 16mm small heads
•4 – 10mm low heads
•4 – 16mm low heads
❅-FKS 14/140
•8 – 18mm small heads
•4 – 10mm low heads
•4 – 16mm low heads
❅-FKS 18/180
•12 – 10mm low heads
•4 – 16mm low heads

❅-NTN Freeride (12/13 & Newer)
•12 – 10mm small heads
•4 – 8mm low heads
❅-NTN Freeride (11/12 & older
•12 – 8mm small heads
•4 – 8mm low heads
❅-NTN Freedom
•4 – 8mm small heads
•2 – 12 mm small heads
•4 – 8mm low heads
•12 – 10mm low heads

•8 – 20mm small heads (20mm screw is not yet available but will be introduced for the 15/16 season, you can source your own screws for now)
•8 – 12mm small heads
•8 – 12mm small heads
•8 – 16mm small heads
•8 – 10mm flat heads
•12 – 12mm flat heads (screw coming soon – if ordering for this binding its best to source your own 10mm counter sunk screws.  Our Small head screw gets in the way of the heel release function.  Our new flat head screw being introduced for next season will eliminate this problem)
•2 – 12mm small heads
•4 – 14mm small heads
•6 – 16mm small heads
•4 – 26mm low heads
•4 – 12mm small heads
•2 – 14mm small heads
•6 – 16mm small heads
•4 – 20mm low heads
❅-STH14 Driver (2011 & newer) NOT STH2
•4 – 12mm small heads
•10 – 16mm small heads
•4 – 26mm small heads
❅-912 Ti
•12 – 18mm small heads
•4 – 26mm low heads

❅-500 Easy
•14 – 10mm small heads
•16 – 8mm small heads – the diameter of the screw will will need to be ground down to 8mm to fit

•4 – 8mm low heads
•8 – 10mm lowheads
•4 – 18mm low heads (coming soon – sub in a 20mm and grind down for now)
❅-Peak 15
•4 – 8mm low heads
•4 – 10mm low heads
•4 – 12mm low heads (coming soon)
•4 – 16mm low heads
❅-Peak 12/Mojo 12
•4 – 14mm small heads
•4 – 10mm small heads
•4 – 16mm small heads
•4 – 18mm small heads

•12 – 14mm small heads

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Drilling Skis to Mount Ski Bindings

Drilling ski with stepped alpine drill bit

Drilling skis to mount ski bindings is very straight forward and similar to drilling a multitude of materials like woods, plastics and composites. Practice on wood scraps helps to relieve stress before drilling your precious skis for the firs time.

Take your time, measure thrice and drill once. You’ll soon learn how easy and undaunted you will become.


If you haven’t done so, please also check out the following topics before proceeding:

-Finding Your Ski’s Centerline
-Paper Ski Binding Templates
-Drill and Tap Guides for Hand Drilling

 After locating your binding template relative to the ski center line and boot sole center mark on the skis:
  1. Secure template with masking tape
  2. Mark small holes with a very sharp awl by hand at the hole locations
  3. Double check that hole marks are equidistant from centerline
  4. Measure with ruler, tape or calipers to assure they match the template
  5. Place the binding piece and visually make sure the marks align properly





If you find minor errors in your marks, you can use the awl tip to slightly ‘move’ the mark.


Once you are certain your hole layout is accurate, use a punch and hammer to enlarge the mark to provide a better guide for the drill bit tip.

Relative to your experience level, confidence, required tolerances, drill and drill bit type, and other factors, the following hand drilling steps may be variable. Stainless steel inserts require a higher level of accuracy for location and vertical drilling than an alpine screw.  If you have a drill press with a stop, you certainly don’t need a drill guide, but may consider using a drill bit stop collar on the bit. A stepped alpine drill bit ‘s shoulder may suffice for some as a reasonable ‘stop’ for drilling, but not others. A straight jobber, brad tipped or even stepped 1/4″ bits absolutely need a drill bit stop collar or certainty with a drill press stop.

The moment of truth, drilling the skis with a hand drill with various methods:

Drill Guide & Drill Bit Stop Collar:

  1. Set the depth of the drill bit stop collar to proper depth
  2. Locate the guide in the punched drill hole mark with the drill bit tip
  3. Clamp if desired or secure with a firm hand
  4. Turn on hand drill and to drill to the stop
  5. Turn off and pull out bit
  6. Repeat on the remaining holes

Drill Bit Stop Collar:

  1. Set the depth of the drill bit stop collar to proper depth
  2. Locate the drill bit in the punched drill hole mark
  3. Turn on hand drill and to drill to the stop
  4. Turn off and pull out bit
  5. Repeat on the remaining holes

Freehand Drilling with Stepped Drill Bit:

  1. Locate the drill bit in the punched drill hole mark
  2. Turn on hand drill and to drill to the shoulder (BE CAREFUL)
  3. Turn off and pull out bit
  4. Repeat on the remaining holes

Final Steps:

Tap holes as necessary for top sheet type or stainless steel inserts:

Check drilled holes and vacuum drill dust:

Add binding sealant/glue or epoxy as desired or recommended. Remove bubbles with toothpick and make sure perimeter and base of holes are coated:



Mount binding parts with proper screws and driver:


Make sure bindings are mounted flat to the ski surface with no gaps:







Visually inspect mounting of all binding parts and alignment:


Have boot fit, correct forward pressure and proper DIN set by authorized ski technician:

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Stainless Steel Screws for Threaded Inserts

BFsmall_headThe common question regarding the screws needed for stainless steel inserts (Binding Freedom & Quiver Killers have the same threads) and particular bindings
hopefully can be answered here. It is impossible for us to remain on top of every screw for every binding and there are variables that can be at play depending on your particular set of circumstances (ie, insert installation depth, shims, binding thickness, etc).

Measuring your binding thickness and adding that to your insert depth is your best guide.

Ordering more screws than you think you’ll need is always a good idea. BFlow_headAlso, you can always reduce the length of screws that are a little long. If in doubt, erring towards longer screws with the possibility of minor modifications by grinding or filing allows some flexibility.

Using a threadlocker like Vibra-Tite or Loctite is highly recommended.

Binding Freedom has a Screw Length Chart that will be updated from time to time, along with the following screw measuring tips and images.

Tips on Measuring your bindings for screw lengths
Flathead and Smallhead screws are measured as the total length of the screw, while Buttonhead screws are measured as the length of just the threads
Fasteners should protrude 4mm MIN and 6mm MAX into a threaded insert.  To determine the idea fastener length, press an existing screw into the binding hole. Make sure it has bottomed out in its hole. Measure how far it protrudes below the base of the binding.
Measure the screw itself as well. Subtract the protrusion length from the length of the screw. Add 5mm to that length. Find the closest size fastener that is within 1mm of that number. In this example, 13mm – 9mm + 5mm = 9mm. Either an 8mm or 10mm flathead would be appropriate for this binding.


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Versatile Big Gator Tools Hand Drill and Tap Guides

Ski_drilling-guide3Any DIYer will find years of usefulness for an array of gear and home projects, repairs and maintenance out of Big Gator Hand Drill & Tap Guides. They can be used on flat surfaces (like skis & snowboards), corners and round items (like ski poles and bike frames). With or without clamping, these handy guides should be in every DIYers toolbox.

Big Gator Tools was established in 2005 and is now marketing the most universal patented drill Land tap guides ever sold. Guides are made from a special nickel alloyed steel that is heat-treated and ground along bottom surface to assure stability and accurate perpendicular alignment on flat surfaces. All guides have a 90 degree V-groove along the bottom that allows perpendicular alignment on round parts as well as corners.

TAP GUIDES: Holes are sized for ANSI Standard and Metric Ground Thread Taps.

Standard V-TapGuides can handle tap sizes: ( 0-80, 1-64, 1-72, 2-56, 2-64, 3-48, 3-56, 4-36, 4-40, 4-48, 5-40, 5-44, 6-32, 6-36, 6-40, 8-32, 8-36, 8-40, 10-24, 10-32, ¼-20, ¼-28, 5/16-18, 5/16-24, 3/8-16, 3/8-24, 7/16-14, 7/16-20, ½-13, ½-20, 5/8-11, 5/8-18)

Metric V-TapGuides can handle tap sizes: ( 1.6mm, 2mm, 2.5mm, 3mm, 3.5mm, 4mm, 5mm, 6mm, 8mm, 10mm, 12mm, 14mm, 16mm)

STI TAP GUIDES: (Screw Thread Inserts)

STI-UNC V-TapGuides can handle standard ground STI hand tap sizes: (Unified Coarse Threads: 9/16-12, 1/2-13, 7/16-14, 3/8-16, 5/16-18, 1/4-20, 12-24, 10-24, 8-32, 6-32)

STI-UNF V-TapGuides can handle standard ground STI hand tap sizes: (United Fine Threads: 5/8-18, 9/16-18, 1/2-20, 7/16-20, 3/8-24, 5/16-24, 1/4-28, 10-32, 8-36)


Standard V-DrillGuides are made for 17 standard drill sizes: (1/8 to 3/8 in 1/64 increments) Covers all the drill sizes in a standard 3/8 drill index except drill sizes smaller than 1/8”. Heat treated for durability like drill bushings. It’s like having a portable drill press anywhere! Straight perpendicular alignment wherever you go.

Metric V-DrillGuides can handle drill sizes: 3, 3.3, 3.5, 4, 4.2, 4.5, 5, 5.5, 6, 6.5, 6.8, 7, 7.5, 8.0, 8.5, 9, 9.5mm

Here is a video from Tom Hintz, owner/publisher of made this video as part of an independent review of the Big Gator Drill and Tap Guides. (Please note that the tap guides do not need to be clamped in place like in the video to hand tap.)

For additional information also see: Drill and Tap Guides for Hand Drilling

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Boot Sole Center Gauge

The old adage “Measure Thrice, drill once” is applied to measuring, drilling and mounting bindings. A necessary part of the process is to double check ski mounting lines on both skis to verify accuracy. This step is typically overlooked when considering Boot Sole Centers.

Manufacturing errors, wear and tear and other factors may create an inaccuracy in the actual length and center of the boot.

As a simple tool to quickly verify the accuracy of your boot soles and there centers, here is a Ski Boot Sole Center Gauge that can be downloaded, printed and spliced at the Boot Center Line (after verifying scale) to set your boots on to check length and center mark accuracy.

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Paper or Clear Plastic Ski Binding Templates

A very useful resource for DIY binding mounting and comparisons is paper (or clear plastic) binding templates. Not only are they great aids for accurately laying out binding holes for drilling new holes, but you can also use them to compare existing hole clearances relative to new bindings, binding combinations and discovering unknown original bindings by the hole patterns on used skis.

Template Sources: Binding manufacturers often include templates in the box with new bindings (middle in image below).

Binding Freedom , the maker of stainless steel binding inserts has created a growing library of alpine and AT templates. (Bottom) Another insert manufacturer, Quiver Killer also is creating a template library (which may be edited versions of the Binding Freedom templates) along with other fastener downloads.

You can also draw your own (top). like we did with our CAD software, from a scan of the FKS/Pivot template provided by Look. It can be reprinted for multiple mounts and customized for different Boot Sole Lengths before printing.

Printing & Scaling: Accuracy is very important and the first step to verify printed templates is to check their relative scale and see how the actual bindings sit on the template to visually see if the holes align.

Check to see if the template has any scale or a dimension you can check with a ruler. Often the output from a printer can be slightly off for a variety of reasons. Scaling and reprinting may be necessary multiple times until you get it just right. If you cannot adjust the printing scale with your operating system or printing software, you may need to incorporate the use of graphics software that allows you to resize images and PDFs as needed before printing.

In the example above, the original print was off (too big) by 1mm in 200mm, or 0.5%. Since we needed to decrease the size of the print, we scaled the image 99.5% (199mm/200mm) to get the accurate result. If we needed to increase the output the same 0.5%, then we would need to set the printing scale at 100.5% (200mm/199mm).

For many the 0.5% discrepancy may be just fine, but if there are several layout, drilling and mounting steps off by 0.5% each, it’s possible to be off by a couple millimeters. On the other hand, sometimes minute errors cancel each other out and you can end up with dead on results despite the relative inaccuracies and many bindings do have built in adjustability. Regardless, it is best to be as accurate (especially for AT tech bindings) as you can with each step while also realizing this is not heart surgery and that these tolerances may actually be tighter than some shops and their binding mount jigs.

Splicing & Assembly: Because most bindings require variable Toe versus Heel piece locations due to variable foot and Boot Sole Length (BSL) AND the common printing length of 11 inches, usually two sheets are required per binding. As long as you locate each binding piece relative to the ski centerline and recommended or desired ski mount point and midsole boot mark, they can be utilized individually.

If you prefer to create one paper template per binding, you will need to print on a larger format printer or splice typical letter size sheets. Due to physical printer limitations, printing cannot occur to the paper edges. When two pieces need to be spliced, one piece will ideally need to be cut at the joint to assure accuracy during splicing (clear output does not need to be cut, unless desired).

Once one side is accurately cut, place it over the bottom sheet and a straight edge located along the center line. Align one edge and tape near the joint with masking tape to hold it close and still act as a hinge. Then align the other edge and the centerline of both sheets along the straight edge. Once this is correct, tape the other edge outside the center of the template. 

Double check the joint and the straightness of the centerline. If you can measure any components between the two halves, do so to verify accuracy. One thing we add on our templates is dimensions that we can measure to double and triple check physical and relative dimensions. After you feel certain the two halves are where they need to be, run a strip of clear tape over the joint on the front and then the backside.

Repeat on another pair if desired for one template per ski and cut off excess paper on the sides and ends. The masking tape will be removed in the process. The template(s) are now ready to be taped onto the ski centerline and mounting point at the boot mark.

Ski Centerline and Boot Sole Length and Mid Sole: As alluded to above, the binding mounting templates are relative to the centerline of the bindings and ski edges. The longer the centerline and straight edge, the more accurate the whole process will turn out. If you do not have a long straight edge, a piece of string secured on it’s ends works well. Typically, the two paper template sheets can slide along each other with a guide to align at the BSL. The BSL should be marked on the boot sole along with mid sole/mounting mark. If not, then measure the sole at the bottom from the tip of the toe to the heel. It’s probably a good idea to measure even if there is a a Boot Sole Center mark in the event there was a manufacturing error or general wear and tear of the soles. If unsure, further research may be required before attempting any of these steps and mounting your bindings.

The “|A” is the center boot mark and the “MM 298” is the BSL for the boot n the example below.

The boot center mark is placed over the green mounting line for the 298 MM BSL on the template.

Using a hole punch at the BSL line helps you to align the template at your mounting line:

Other Binding Template Uses: Also as mentioned, comparing existing bindings to new ones and screw hole offsets can be performed. Here is a download that compares the midsole of a 328mm boot sole (not by SlideWright) to see an excellent example of how can be facilitated. You can turn off and on the PDF layers to isolate various binding combinations.

And a video blasting through the steps putting a template together:















Here is a high speed video on cutting, splicing and taping paper or plastic templates. Pause as needed to see the steps as needed.

(Use the Space bar to pause, arrows to advance)

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Binding Freedom & Quiver Killer Stainless Steel Threaded Insert Installation

Binding Freedom Insert

Binding Freedom Insert Courtesy of Drew

For all intents and purposes, regarding materials, tools, screws and installation procedures, Binding Freedom & Quiver Killer stainless steel threaded inserts are virtually interchangeable.

(Click on the adjacent images to enlarge.)

The main difference between the two is that the Binding Freedom inserts have a notch across the top. This allows for the use of a slotted driver or Binding Freedom’s 3 in 1 Installation Tool. This slot also allows for the removal of the insert without ruining the interior threads while using an extraction tool with reverse threads.

Quiver Killer Insert

Quiver Killer Insert Courtesy of Drew

Stuff happens and occasionally you may need to remove an errant insert so always order more than you think you need…just in case. It is also possible that the slot in the BF insert can also get stripped or compromised and an extractor may become necessary. A jam nut in conjunction with a threaded installation tool or shoulder screw can also be used for installation and extraction for both inserts.

Dimensions: Both Quiver Killer and Binding Freedom inserts are nominally 9mm length x 8mm (5/16″) diameter. The actual diameters for both average 7.85 mm. The lengths QK inserts average 8.55 mm & the BF inserts average 9.15. This is a minor 0.6 mm average difference which may be important for some but inconsequential for most. A little deeper hole will fill with epoxy to nullify any voids.

Both have the same outer (same tap & handle) and inner threads. The inner threads accept M5 x 0.8mm pitch machine screws. The pitch indicates the travel distance of the screw for each revolution. Both inserts are within 0.2mm of the same effective average screw depth of over 6 revolutions (QK=6.5 and BF=6.25) which is around 5mm screw length engagement inside the inserts.

General Binding Insert Installation Tips:

  • Practice on old skis or scrap wood before attempting on your current skis.
  • It is highly recommended that you redrill existing holes for binding inserts after testing the binding location and skis with a conventional alpine binding mount.
  • Even though existing holes may have been fine for alpine or telemark mounts, does not necessarily mean they are free from accuracy errors. Alpine screws can be off a little bit and work fine. The tolerances for threaded inserts are less and be sure to double check existing holes before blindly drilling away. You can use a paper binding template with the holes punched out as a quick gauge.
  • Only attempt installations when you have time, focus and mojo. If you are pressed for time, tired, distracted, inebriated, among other factors, errors are more likely to occur.
  • Despite all of the care in the world, you can still be off just enough to create a problem once the epoxy sets. We recommend that you ‘lightly’ install your bindings with appropriate screws to align the binding holes with the inserts while the epoxy cures. It is possible to ‘tweak’ the installed insert location just enough if there are slight errors. Double check the overall alignment.

Also see:

Drilling Holes: 1/4″ (0.2500″) or F (0.2570″)? Some recommend using a 7/1000″ larger ‘F’ drill bit while others prefer the more standard 1/4″ drill bit which fit in our standard drill guides to assure vertical and accurate drilling. The F bit fits the Binding Freedom guide block better.We consider 7/1000″ well within the reasonable margin of error so either will work. The SVST stepped drill bits measure 1/4″ (with 5/16″ shank), as do our straight jobber or brad tip bits. A brad tip bit is very accurate for initial hole drilling, but not recommended for re-drilling existing holes.

Tapping: After the holes are accurately drilled, carefully tapping the holes to create interior threads for the inserts is required. The inserts are not self-tapping like wood and alpine screws (though some alpine screw installations require tapping (some tap their ski binding holes, regardless). Using a drill/tap guide with a stop collar or other visual aid is recommended. You want to be assured that you tap vertically and do not continue to tap a hole after the tap hits the bottom. It will strip the threads if the tap stops at the hole bottom and the tap keeps rotating.

Epoxy: Generally, a longer curing epoxy is best for more strength. Either the Hardman General Purpose  Epoxy (Blue) or the higher strength, Hardman Very High Peel Strength Epoxy (Orange) work well. The General Purpose is a light amber color and finishes clean and hard. The Very High Peel Strength finishes flexible and gray. Be sure to clean the inserts to free them of any oils or other material that may affect the bonding of the epoxy. A bike or chain degreaser is a good option. After filling the holes with mixed two-part epoxy, use a tooth pick to remove bubbles and coat all surfaces in the tapped holes.

Installing Inserts: The installation of threaded stainless steel binding inserts can be accomplished by hand with a dedicated insert installation tool and tap handle or a threaded shoulder screw, hex bit, driver and jam nut. The Binding Freedom inserts can also be installed with their dedicated 3 in 1 tool. After installing an insert with the threaded options and you are backing out the tool, you may feel the insert also backing out. A quick counterclockwise rotation of a driver or tap handle usually releases the tool and leaves the insert in place. If not, utilizing a jam nut and wrench in a clockwise direction while backing out will hold the insert.

For extractions, as mentioned previously, the Binding Freedom 3 in 1 tool can be used with the slot of the BF insert. A jam nut locked to the insert with a wrench with the threaded tool can be used. If that does not work, a reverse threaded extractor may be required. This may or may not damage the threads. Heating the insert with a soldering iron often softens cured epoxy enough to facilitate the extraction.

Be sure the inserts are installed flush or just below the top sheet. If you find later that one or more is just ‘proud’ of the top sheet, it can be filed or ground flush.

Screws: Flat, Button & Pan head stainless steel screws are typically used with the inserts to replace the original alpine screws. See the Stainless Steel Screws for Threaded Inserts post for more information.

Threadlockers: Loctite and Vibra-Tite VC-3 are recommended threadlockers that must be applied to the screws and let cure before screw installation. There have been issues with Loctitie and some plastic parts on some bindings. Generally, it is not a problem, but Vibra-Tite does not create these problems and is generally given the edge as the better of the two options.

Periodically reapplication of a threadlocker will be necessary if bindings and screws are frequently removed and reinstalled into others for binding swaps. Not much is needed, but be assured that the screws do not work themselves out.

If you have questions or wish to post a comment, please do so below.

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Finding Your Ski’s Centerline

One of the few things consistent between all of the various shapes, sizes, side wall and top sheet shapes, binding locations, and camber/rocker, etc of skis and snowboards is that they are symmetrical relative to their longitudinal centerline.

Finding the centerline with accurate measuring and layout tools is critical when drilling for and mounting bindings or checking their proper mount locations from the shop. Not only for side to side symmetry, but to assure they are in line with the ski.There are many simple and complex tools and approaches employed using any number of measuring and layout tools to determine the centerline. Some are accurate and some are not.

The first two thing to remember is that in order for your skis to perform as designed is that bindings need to be centered relative to the edges and NOT the top sheet or side walls AND the sides of skis are typically not straight, but curved. Additionally, their proper fore and aft location is important and establishing an accurate centerline assists in this regard.

Cautions: Without factoring the curvature of the ski sides, simply using a try square or intersecting diagonals or intersecting arcs can result in minor to major inaccuracies.

Granted, the turning radii of many skis is large enough that measuring from both sides using a square can be reasonably accurate if not used absolutely and directly across the skis,

while using crossing diagonals and arcs can result in large discrepancies. Top sheet graphics and variable side wall shapes are other sources of inaccuracies. Whether a skis is cap or sandwich construction or symmetrical top sheet graphics, they are not to be relied on for measuring the skis other than general dimensions.This leaves the edges as the ‘benchmark’ for the lateral ski dimensions (as well as for base flatness). Accurate measuring tools like calipers, tape measures and rulers can easily find the width from edge to edge, but are not necessarily the easiest or accurate or reliable tools at transferring measurements to the top sheet for marking.

Easy & Accurate Techniques: A very useful aid is to place a strip of masking tape down the perceived center of the ski. If you don’t have tape a grease pencil on the top sheet works as does a clamped piece of string or straight edge. The longer the straight edge or distance from your end marks, the more aligned your centerline will be. If the marks are closer and you are slightly off center with one of your marks, the angle of the centerline will be greater than if they same two marks are farther apart.

A center rule, ideally with edge guides or ‘locators’ is the simplest and quickest  reliably accurate method to mark a center line. The math is eliminated and you simply need to match the measurements on each side of center to set the center.


This PDF centering template can be used to by folding it over the ski and creasing it over the edges at the same measurement and tape it. You can mark each end and then move the template other locations and use it on the other ski.



Using the common try or double square, is another easy option for finding center. Rather than spending time micro-tuning the blade location (with the handle against each edge) go ahead and ballpark the length either

just long or just short of center and make a mark along the end of the blade. After you have two marks, measure in between them to find true center.

Always double check your measurements, before, during and after drawing your centerline.



Once you are confident your line is indeed the center of your skis, you can square against it at the ski’s mounting point to draw your center line for your  boot center and tap on your binding template and are ready to mark and drill for an accurate binding mount.

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Drill and Tap Guides for Hand Drilling

Clamped Wall-Lenk drill guide used for ski binding inserts.Accuracy for hand drilled holes, not only with location, but also depth and vertical alignment are easily assured with drill and tap guides. In softer materials (ie, skis and snowboards) and using coarse threaded, alpine binding screws allow for minor adjustments and are a bit more forgiving than the accuracy required when drilling and tapping for screw inserts. Guides are still a good idea when drilling your precious boards for ANY binding mounts.

In addition to guides and correctly sized drill bits, drill bit and tap stops assure the proper depth of the drill hole and can also be used to make sure you do not strip the threads while tapping for screw or insert threads. Stepped drill bits (vs straight) offer a shoulder which can work as a ‘stop’ for experienced techs, but properly used bit stops are cheap insurance to help you avoid drilling through your ski or snowboard and can expedite the process.

Drill and tap guides can be used by simply holding them in place, but clamping is also a good idea, especially if you are less familiar or less confident about the procedure. Practice drill and tapping using the guides by hand and with clamps on scrap material before ‘learning by trial and error’ on your skis or snowboard.

Sometimes drill guides are described as ‘jigs’. This may cause confusion for some since binding jigs are made with set hole patterns for specific bindings. Guides need to be accurately placed using templates or other form of hole layout, are more versatile and have unlimited applications, including some with V-grooves that can be used on round materials (pipes, ski poles, bike tubing, etc) and corners.

SVST’s Drilling ‘Jig’ is a very nice adjustable drill guide for 5/16″ drill bits. Typical stepped alpine binding and insert mounting drill bits have a 5/16″ diameter shaft and the tips are milled at different diameters and lengths depending on the screw or insert application. The diameters required for alpine AB tap or insert taps are different than the 5/16′ drill bit.

The Big Gator Tool V-Drill Guide offers 17 hole diameters in it’s v-grooved, metal base. The holes are a touch generous for perfectly aligned tapping, but work well enough for binding inserts and screws. Stops can be used on all taps and drills.

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