Black Diamond’s line of Helio bindings is exciting and the 180 represents an impressive amount of innovation and versatility, all while staying below the 200g benchmark. First, choose your release value: 6, 8, or 10. Next, feel how simple it is to enter a toe-piece that only has springs on one wing, and feel the smooth operation of the toe-lever as you lock it into uphill mode. Then, adjust the heel to whichever boot you want to use that day. Finally, go ski anything you feel like for years to come because it’s durable and has easily-replaceable wear-items. It even has multiple riser-heights: a flat-mode plus two climbers. If the standard race-style heel-flap isn’t cutting it for you, spin the heel piece 180° and reverse the heel flap for a third position and a boost up the hill. The Black Diamond Helio 180 comes with a pair of adjustment plates, crampon receptors, and leashes, making it a more versatile version of the 145 (otherwise it’s the same aside from the color).
- Your choice of 6, 8, or 10 in release strength, both lateral and vertical.
- Included adjustment plates and leashes for BSL changes and security.
- Monolink toe piece is as powerful and smooth as it is light.
- Replaceable steel fork is durable and easily swapped.
- Included crampon receptor (+8g) is compatible with Helio ski crampons.
- A pair of Helio Leashes is also included.
|Weight (pair)||376g |
||2 + flat|
||6, 8, or 10|
||6, 8, or 10|
||Aluminum alloy, stainless steel|
|Skimo Co Says|
|Usage||Speed touring, weekly racing, adventure skiing, light 'n fast use and abuse, grand course racing|
|Notes||Extra riser accessed by spinning heel piece 180°|
|Bottom Line||Helio 145 with bonus features.|
|Compare to other Race Bindings|
Questions & Reviews
FYI there are a few bindings with a heel-exit feature. The Fritschi Tecton, Ski Trab TR-2, Marker Kingpin all have it. Nothing in the super lite category though.
The steel pins avoid any wear issues (i.e., as opposed to the Ti pins on so many all-out race models), and the 8 release setting seems about right. (Just be warned though that the pins are *not* compatible with the all-out race models from ATK, as the interface is a bit different.) The ability to skin with a slightly higher heel elevator (i.e., via flipping the heel cover all the way back then rotating the heel 180 degrees) is also a nice plus, as is the closely nestled heel piece contour when in flat mode. (Just be sure to mount the heel correctly as shown in ATK pictures, *NOT* in the backwards BD picture -- but since the mounting pattern is symmetrical fore/aft, you can fix any mistake by reusing the same holes.)
The toe springs seem a bit softer than on the all-out race models, or at least I have twisted out while skinning with the toe lever in ski mode, which has never happened on my race bindings -- then again, that could just be the difference in skintracks, but either way, you definitely want to pull the toe lever up into tour mode when skinning.
The accessory package that comes with the binding is also impressive, and everything the accessories is first rate. Plus you can mount the binding directly to the ski initially, then add the plate later. Ditto for the crampon clips.
my pair seems about right
Black Diamond will not be rebranding the ATK Raider 12 2.0. We do have the Hagan Core Binding which is that binding rebranded by Hagan. For next season the brake will move from the toe to the heel and we will have it available as the Hagan Core Ultra.
The plate difference is just cosmetic with the BD graphics. But the base of the binding pedestal is not symmetrical.
If you look at the BD picture for the Helio 145, that orientation is correct. But in the picture for the BD 180, the plate needs to be flipped 180 degrees, and then the binding flipped 180 degrees on its pedestal.
Otherwise, the contours of the heel unit when spun 90 degrees will not allow for sufficient clearance of the boot heel, as one part of the heel unit hits the boot heel before the rest of the heel unit. When mounted correctly, the contours of the binding are cleverly designed to mimic the contours of the boot heel when the binding is rotating 90 degrees.
Do you know how much the crampon holder will cost?
Earn store credit by writing reviews. Learn more.