I rode them 1/2 of last season and this season maybe about 50+ days on em. The buckles started to slip seemed like the teeth on the male piece was a bit soft. If I knew of some buckles that fit well with the binding I would replace them like everyone does with the sparks and karakorems. I thought the binding was comfortable, the forward lean adjustments a bit of a pain in the ass so I found myself just choosing not to mess with it unless the line demanded a bit of forward lean. The adjustments were easy when I had to adjust them to fit my big ass spark boots. So I would say if the deal is good get em and replace the buckles. Not a bad binding but I don't have much to compare it with.
Joined: Sat Mar 19, 2011 6:48 pm Posts: 501 Location: Kodiak, AK
I'm not sure why the Light Rails don't get more respect. They work great. I spent part of last winter on them and some days this year. Honestly, once I am strapped in, I can't tell the diff between the LR's and my Spark Burners. My Karakorams made my feet unhappy, so I always knew when I was on those. During the transition, the Spark LT pins slide more precisely and straight through the LT touring brackets and bindings, but once underway, the difference is pretty academic, and if you are using the stamped Voile touring brackets with the Sparks, the diff is negligible. The Spark LTs may be a hair smoother and slop free, but unless you are staring down and concentrating hard you would probably not pick up on it. Ride mode is nearly identical. They slide onto the pucks nicely, hold well, are stiff and stout, and have plenty of adjustment. The only thing the Sparks have over the Light Rails is that they ship with Burton straps from the get-go. The Voile straps sorta suck (butter soft ladders) and will need to be replaced, so unless you have some old straps sitting around you will need to figure that into the purchase price. The Burton straps that ship with Sparks are great. Otherwise the bindings are largely comparable. I do like the crampons that Spark makes better than the Voiles (easier to install while underway), so that is a possible issue. You can also make the Sparks lighter via the LT pin and touring bracket, but that's extra $$. So I guess it all depends on the strap/crampon/touring bracket situation as to which is better for you. The Sparks are also on sale now too, so price being equal, I would get Sparks since the extras you can buy (LT touring brackets and crampons) are better with that system.
_________________ Jones Solution 163W Venture Zephyr 164/260 Never Summer SL 163X Burton Spliff 148 BD, G3, and Gecko skins Sparks, etc...
Joined: Fri Feb 22, 2008 6:51 am Posts: 446 Location: Surfing or Splitboarding Downunder
Botero I've tested both when they were current. The light rail was my preferred out of the box. They both have problems. Light Rail *Needed a cap strap for the toe. *The old crampon wouldn't work. Fuse *The high back was tooo soft! *Needed a cap strap for the toe.
I have modified my fuses with Carbon high backs and Burton straps and they are great now. I haven't bothered to mod the light rail. I don't worry too much about weight but the Light Rail seemed lighter. This is an unbiased review as I now use hard boots anyway!
This is now not relevant as there is better Spark bindings out there.
Powder_Rider I used the Light rail for a season 2 years ago. See above The new light rails have better straps and the brass bush for the pin. They were lighter than the fuse but not as light as the burner from recent inspection. When you line them up next to each other(2012 models) you can see that the Sparks are a step up in terms of quality. However if the price was right they are still a good option. Another thing to consider is that you will need the new orange crampon if you go with the light rails as the older ones are not compatible