The missing link for Telemark Tech Systems. GET THESE!
It is not an exaggeration to say that these spring cartridges make the Telemark Tech System a viable binding norm. If you want to earn lots of turns in modern tele gear, these are pretty much essential.
The conundrum with all TTS bindings has been the need for cable springs that provide strong tele resistance while also providing adequate travel. Switchback X2 springs are plenty stiff, but they bottom out after very little heel lift; going knee-to-ski is not possible. Voile’s red Long Travel-Tour cartridges provide adequate travel but not enough resistance for big boots & aggressive skiing.
These new gray Long Travel cartridges hit the sweet spot. They don’t offer quite as much resistance as the X2’s, but the resistance & lateral stiffness are adequate when skied with TX Pros. I wasn’t able to go fully knee to ski when standing on flat ground, but 8 days of hard bump skiing resulted in no pullouts -- kinda important deep in the backcountry!
I should note that these didn’t feel like they wanted to “snap” my heel back down onto the ski quite as smoothly/quickly as the Switchback X2 cartridges. Perhaps this is unavoidable with the longer springs & tubes (more friction?). Not a dealbreaker, though; one can adjust technique for the way a binding snaps back; the resistance as you raise the heel is far more important.
I also skied these with old F1 Carbons -- the softest boot imaginable -- to see if the configuration was too much. It skied fine. Maybe I could have switched to a little less activity (and more preload), but the springs certainly weren’t crushing the bellows. If Scarpa ever makes a lightweight tech tele boot, these springs will match up well.
Bottom line: these spring cartridges are absolutely the missing link that takes TTS from a clever concept to an actual well-functioning product. If you have tech-toe tele boots and you like earning turns, you need these.