75mm or NTN for a rookie

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75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by Rennschwein » Mon Oct 05, 2020 10:05 am

I have been considering buying some telemark equipment for myself after attending a short course and renting some gear a couple of times.
However, I found it hard to choose between 75mm and NTN. My initial plan was to get some used 75mm shoes, bindings and skis as I don't have the opportunities to use the gear every weekend (even if I live in Norway). The reasoning for choosing 75mm was that I do a lot of cross country skiing on my Åsnes Gamme with NNNBC bindings, and would like to do tele turns on those in the end as well. I was told that since NTN is much stiffer and different compared to 75mm it would make it harder to translate the skills to my cross country skiing.
Unfortunately (for me) NTN seems to be the more popular option, while 75mm is fading from the market.

Is it worth trying to find some 75mm gear or should I go for NTN? I would mainlyuse it in the slopes, but hopefully after sometime I could start going more off-piste and perhaps try some longer tours.

What would be suitable beginner shoes, bindings and skis? I have rather broad feet, which makes some of the older Scarpa shoes I have tried rather painful to use after a short time.
Could for example Scott Voodoo be a good option for me?

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Re: 75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by lowangle al » Mon Oct 05, 2020 12:24 pm

I don’t have an answer to your question but I will say that you will have better luck with newer scarpas that have thermo mountable liners for your wide feet.

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Re: 75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by Woodserson » Tue Oct 06, 2020 11:58 am

Find a boot that fits. Then decide the binding. Everything is slowly shifting to NTN, so you will have more options.

Don't worry about the cross-over to tele on your Gammes. That's another bag of wax entirely. If you really want to cross over skills you learn to telemark on light XCD gear or your Gammes and then ski on your heavier set-up. Skills won't transfer down as easy from 75 or NTN to the Gammes.

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Re: 75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by telerat » Wed Oct 07, 2020 7:59 am

Hello, I'm living in Trondheim, Norway and agree that NTN looks to be the more popular option on new gear, although randonee is much more popular than both these days. I have skied 75mm for many years, both on cross country(mountain skiing) and on telemark. Last time I upgraded my telemark skis I bought NTN, but continued using an older pair with 75mm with Voile Switchback for ski mountaineering, until I bought Meidjo. NTN is stiffer, has more precision, and option for ski brakes and release, but otherwise Switchback is an equal option for ski mountaineering and 75mm works fine for lift based skiing both on- and off-piste. The difference between telemark and cross country technique is too large to influence my decisions on gear.

There is an abundance of 75mm gear on finn.no (Norwegian language):
https://www.finn.no/bap/forsale/search. ... 9.3962.254
so you should be able to buy used 75mm telemark gear inexpensively here in Norway.

For wider feet I think older Garmont boots should work fine. On newer boots I think Crispi is the better choice. My Scarpa TX is wider in the forefoot than my (very) old T1s. I believe Scott Voodoo isn't the widest. Others have more knowledge than me on boot fit though.

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Re: 75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by Andinista » Sat Oct 10, 2020 2:06 pm

In terms of how the bindings ski, NTN can be considered as one category but there are significant differences within 75mm norm. Axls and Hammerheads and perhaps a couple more than I haven’t tried, can be active and not too different than NTN, and also be adjusted less active. Others won’t provide similar performance on the active side I believe. So make sure to weight that on your decision. Active bindings are more powerful, I think that’s a fact every tele skier should acknowledge, technique may partially overcome that but regular human beings have some limitations.

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Re: 75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by teledance » Sun Oct 11, 2020 10:49 am

Plenty of cheap 75mm gear out there, NTN means spending more $$. I'm in the old school camp of 75mm and have no desire to upgrade some love the release factor of NTN and that's one of the reasons many went that way. This will be my 57th season on snow and 29th season on tell gear 60-70 days per season and lots of hiking.

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Re: 75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by Rennschwein » Mon Oct 12, 2020 6:44 am

Cheers for the feeback, greatly appreciated!

I'll have a look into both NTN and 75mm, but will probably start with some cheap 75mm gear if I can find something in my area that fits. Good to know that old Garmont/new crispi could fit my feet.

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Re: 75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by telemarkmark » Sat Oct 17, 2020 6:16 am

If you can afford it go for NTN and tech toes.
I have Meidjo and TXP.
You can back the tension off for a less active feel.
For flatter tours on the TXP I remove the power strap, one buckle, and the cuff lock. When skinning, undo all buckle except the one at the toe.
You might wish to try the Moonlight binding.

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Re: 75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by Rennschwein » Tue Oct 20, 2020 2:13 pm

Okay, I'll take that into consideration.

What would be a good length on the skis when I am 183 cm?

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Re: 75mm or NTN for a rookie

Post by Montana St Alum » Sun Oct 25, 2020 10:28 am

Regarding choosing between NTN and 75mm, for downhill oriented skiing:

If you are new to skiing without having your heel held down - haven't telemark skied, or transitioning from alpine skiing - I think there are significant advantages to starting on 75mm.

One of the important techniques to master, I think, is to drive the knee forward on that trailing ski, pressing the shin against the tongue of the boot. A more flexible set up makes it easier to do that, and to hold that position through the turn, initially. When I see people new to the sport who start out on stiff 75mm or NTN set ups, they tend to get the knee down at the start of the turn, but the binding/boot is so stiff that part way through the turn, the trailing knee doesn't stay down / heel doesn't stay up, and the knee just kind of snaps back up into almost a straight leg alpine stance. (Not sure if I explained that well, unfortunately)

One female friend who was a very experienced alpine skier that I took telemark skiing for the first time, knocked it out of the park on 75mm and G3 bindings. Later, on NTN, she was REALLY struggling!

Just standing on the floor, if you want to get into a tele stance, there are 2 ways to easily do it. One is to slide one foot back and the other is to slide one foot forward. It's the sliding one foot forward motion that I'm talking about as that's the motion that results in shin pressure against the tongue of the boot.

For those with experience on 75mm, transitioning to NTN may result in the same reaction, but I think after a very short time - like 2 or 3 runs - those folks figure it out.
Not surprisingly, they already understand the techniques needed, they just have to get used to new gear.

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