TLT Mountain 6 and Phantom Binding Upgrade

Discussion in 'Splitboard Gear' started by k.p0w, Feb 2, 2015.

  1. k.p0w

    k.p0w

    Location:
    CDA
    I have recently made the upgrade to a pair of TLT Mountain 6's paired with Phantom Bindings. I have had skepticism about this setup for years. My skepticism was actually about snowboarding in hard boots, not necessarily the bindings. I was also not a fan of the cost. Neither the bindings or the boots are cheap. Over the years and especially recently I have spoken with more and more riders who made the switch and swore by it. So I saved my pennies (lots and lots and lots of them!) and ordered my Phantom bindings and bought a pair of TLT6 Mountain boots.

    I've had 3 days on them so far and I won't waste any time getting to the point..... I ABSOLUTELY F$@#ING LOVE THEM!!! Why I didn't do this years ago is beyond me (besides the $). I will wear these boots and bindings every day, regardless of conditions or time of year (they are that good).

    Now, to make your TLT6 Mountain boot just as good as your softies you unfortunately have to modify them. It is not easy to take a file to a brand new pair of super pricey boots but it is necessary (and unfortunately immediately voids any warranty or return). Someday I think a company will make a snowboard specific hard boot with these modifications made for you but until then you have to do it yourself. I followed this blog post from splitboard.com to make my mods:
    http://splitboard.com/talk/topic/dynafit-tlt6-mod-thread/

    Here are the benefits I noticed immediately and I'm sure the list will continue to grow the more I'm out:

    - Everything just got way lighter! Both the boots and the bindings. (I was already using Karakorum SL's and my total riding weight including boots and bindings dropped 2lbs. In tour mode the binding plates are carried in your pack so the touring weight is essentially just the weight of the board and boots.)
    - These boots are really comfortable (I got the liners heat molded. I was using Deeluxe XV before.)
    - I have an amazing range of motion at the ankle in walk mode and after the mods to the highback I still have a lot of forward flex to get onto my toe edge.
    - My edge to edge control and edge hold on hardpack is incredible! I feel more stable and I am riding directly on top of my board. This was certainly one of the most notable and pleasing improvements.
    - No more messing around with tightening laces and adjusting heel and toe straps. Once the boots are modified and adjusted to your liking- you just throw the lever from walk mode into ride mode and you are done.
    - You can still "surf" your snowboard with these boots once the modifications are made. I actually think that I have more of a "surfy" feeling with these boots than I did with my Deeluxe XV's.
    - These boots are less bulky, less likely to wear down on the exterior from rubbing in the bindings, and have less toe and heel overhang so drag is less of a problem.
    - Transitions just became a breeze. Step into the dynafit toe pieces to tour and flip one lever on the Phantoms to lock the hard boot in place. Easy!

    As for the Phantoms:
    It took about 3 to 4 weeks from the time I placed my pre-order until the time they arrived at my door. I received and email with really good instructions on how to set them up. They have multiple options for stance angles and operate very smoothly. Touring with Dynafit toe pieces is BadASS!

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    Last edited: Feb 2, 2015
  2. epicpow

    epicpow

    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    JasonK, Nice write-up and thanks for sharing your insight. Definitely would like to look at transitioning to this set-up, just need to start saving more $$ now . . .
    k.p0w likes this.
  3. k.p0w

    k.p0w

    Location:
    CDA
    Yeah, the $$ part is ridiculous. I shouldn't have spent the $$$$$ but I couldn't help it...... I have an addiction :)
    But now that I've done it I realize that it is completely worth it! And now I'm set up. This should last me awhile......
    PowderPanda and epicpow like this.
  4. idsnowghost

    idsnowghost Staff Member

    Location:
    Spokane, WA
    Another benefit.. automatic crampons! Boot packing even without crampons will be a ton easier.
    k.p0w likes this.
  5. k.p0w

    k.p0w

    Location:
    CDA
    You are right about that Mike. No more clawing my way up the slope like last year! Haha! I am also shopping for Dynafit toe piece ski crampons. Just need to get the right width for the split.
    idsnowghost likes this.
  6. b0ardski

    b0ardski

    Location:
    Sandpoint
    beautiful "state of the art" setup Jason, I love it when converts to the darkside (hardside) go off about stability, edge-hold, and ease of use. And the durability is incomparable to softies.

    Gave up on the hassle of laces & straps and general wimpiness of glorified sorels 25 yrs ago. Nice to see the improvements in weight, functionality and fit (moldable liners) of modern AT boots.

    I just got a new Odin split and Scarpa Pegasus this year but couldn't scrape up the $850 to complete my phantom order. So I pieced together dyna toes, R&D adapter plates and canted pucks to use with old sims bails on voile sliders. Not what I was hoping for with a new setup as it's 2-3# heavier than yours and still uses pucks & pins, but through careful cyber shopping the whole setup cost about what the phantom system would have and including the boots.
    May not even use it this season if it keeps raining:(
    Last edited: Apr 12, 2015
    k.p0w likes this.
  7. Dr. Go

    Dr. Go

    Location:
    Spokane
    I tried hard boots about 8 years ago. Would never go back. I am splitboarding to snowboard and the soft boots are so comfy and feel soo right.
  8. Batski

    Batski

    Location:
    Rathdrum, ID
    I have been checking out this hard boot setup for a while now, found a really good deal on some tlt6 boots and am ordering the phantoms.
    The one downside I have noticed with two split boards setup with the Karkorams, is side hilling on hard snow- its not easy or fun. I also have skis setup with dynafit radicals and these are much easier in the same conditions.
    But I much prefer to snowboard, so i hope these work for me! Now i just have to decide which of my boards to try them on - jones hovercraft or venture storm. Leaning towards the hovercraft at the moment as i have been very impressed with its all around performance this season
    k.p0w likes this.
  9. k.p0w

    k.p0w

    Location:
    CDA
    Batski- I have seen some amazing deals on the TLT6s this Spring. I'm glad you got your hands on some. I also made the upgrade from Karakorams to this setup. I do love the karakorams for a lot of reasons but the difference in the hard boots and dynafit speed radicals on the side hilling will make you very happy. Let me know what board you get! I've been drooling over the Hovercraft for some time. I'm really happy with the Solution I have but I'd love to ride a hovercraft and compare.

    Anyways, a word on the TLT6's.... I made all the modifications exactly as written in the splitboard.com write up: http://splitboard.com/talk/topic/dynafit-tlt6-mod-thread/

    Including shaving some material off the medial and lateral sides. This will give you back your side to side flex like your soft boots. A little bit goes a long way like they state in the article. I took my setup to the resort and rode it without any modifications first, then came home and made some mods, took it back to the resort, and repeated. In about 3/4 resort days I was able to really get everything just how I wanted it.

    If you need any tools for the job (square file/dremel/torx, etc) or want to look at my setup feel free to give me a call.
    208-640-4240
    idsnowghost likes this.
  10. Batski

    Batski

    Location:
    Rathdrum, ID
    I may give you a call! thanks for the offer.
    I own a decent size machine shop so cutting the forward lean plates will probably be done in a mill.
    Looks like our stances are real close from your pictures - could probably get together and swap boards when I get mine set up. I would like to give the solution a try as well.
    I decided to put this setup on my Hovercraft to start with and go from there.
    k.p0w likes this.
  11. Batski

    Batski

    Location:
    Rathdrum, ID
    Got the phantom parts and put together on the hovercraft.
    Carpet surfing feels really good, now i need to get this on the snow!
    So far i dont feel like I need the boot mods. I have been using the stiffest soft boots that are commonly available and these tlt6 boots actually don't feel as stiff as they are - so i am going to try them without mods

    image.jpg
    k.p0w, PowderPanda and Bobby Tarr like this.
  12. Batski

    Batski

    Location:
    Rathdrum, ID
    Another picture

    image.jpg
    k.p0w and PowderPanda like this.
  13. PowderPanda

    PowderPanda Staff Member

    Location:
    Liberty Lake, WA
    BatSki,
    You may find that doing the boot mod's will be needed. I found that without, getting the board on the toe side was cumbersome and I was throwing myself forward. Think about it when you take the board out and test it..
    k.p0w likes this.
  14. Batski

    Batski

    Location:
    Rathdrum, ID
    Finally got a chance to ride this setup on saturday.
    For touring/ skinning this setup is awesome! Unbelievable how nice it is to tour in.
    For boarding I forgot I was in hard boots till i realized how quick and effortless edge changes were.
    Definitely loving it.
    I have not cut any plastic on the boot. I flipped the forward lean plate over, added a footbed, and I am not using the removable tongue. And the upper buckle is on the loosest setting.
    So I will ride for a while this way and try and get a feel for what the next mod will be, if any.
    k.p0w likes this.
  15. Batski

    Batski

    Location:
    Rathdrum, ID
    The Phantom bindings, save your money boys and girls, they are the real deal. It was snowing saturday and I did have some ice on the board, but with a short bit of scraping - no more and probably less than i would have had to do with Karakorams, they were good to go. Quick changeover.
    k.p0w likes this.
  16. Batski

    Batski

    Location:
    Rathdrum, ID
    Rode this hardboot setup again last Friday - 17th. went up with my brother. Mike and I think Brandon? showed up, so followed them up to Glidden lake and did a run. My brother was shot by the time we got down, and that was okay with me as I had to head over to Seattle that afternoon.
    Back to the point.
    Conditions were interesting! everything from hardpack to pockets of powder to chunder to crust! I still thoroughly enjoyed my ride down with this setup! Very confidence inspiring to have the control these allow.
    I was wishing that I had crampons on the way up though! The snow was ice in a couple places and made it a challenge!
    k.p0w and Brandon like this.
  17. It was nice to meet you and your brother on Friday. Too bad we didn't find better conditions on that first run, the next two we made were much better! Fun sledding on the lake afterword too.
  18. Batski

    Batski

    Location:
    Rathdrum, ID
    image.jpg Found this board during the summer, was too good of a deal to pass up.
    So ordered the phantom parts so I have both boards set up the same!
    C'mon snow!!
  19. k.p0w

    k.p0w

    Location:
    CDA
    Yeah man!!!
  20. PowderPanda

    PowderPanda Staff Member

    Location:
    Liberty Lake, WA
    Sweet… Looks like a Christmas tree!! ;-)
    k.p0w likes this.

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