Page Type Gear Review
Object Title 500
Manufacturer Silveretta
Page By bbense
Page Type Jul 31, 2003 / Jul 31, 2003
Object ID 768
Hits 19409
The 500 is the most versatile AT Binding available on the market today. Its unique toe/heel bail combination make it compatible with virtually any boot-AT, alpine, tele, mountaineering, be it leather or plastic. Bomb-proof design and construction have made it a favorite of ice climbers and mountaineers for years. It’s DIN rating and solid performance have won over skiers of the highest caliber. Tough carbon-fiber frame provides super lightweight durability. Super easy entry and exit. Two position heel elevators keep you comfortably on your toes on those long uphills. Available crampons and brakes can be used simultaneously. 3 lbs. 8 oz. of reliable Silveretta quality. Sizes: short, standard, long.


Viewing: 1-5 of 5

hmronnow - Aug 14, 2003 3:46 pm - Voted 4/5

Untitled Review
Have these mounted on short approach skis (130cm Hagan Tour Extreme). Primary reason for getting the silvretta 500 was that they work with mountaineering boots such as my Koflach Arctis Expe. (I will review skis and boots aswell) The new version of knife-edges can with a bit of practice be mounted under the binding without taking off the ski - at least easily removed.

Except for the Dynafit tri-step, which only works with few specific touring-boots, Silvretta 500 has a competitive weight. They are the lightest I have found to work with mountaineering boots (drop a mail if you know alternatives). Combined with short skis and the light Koflach boot I have a light comfortable ascent set.

On descents, they lift the boot up from the ski, giving better edging than e.g. the tri-step. Given the short skis and soft boots, I have not put the binding under extreme forces, but it has released when it should - and only then. One problem is that after side releases, the heel-plaque sometimes gets stuck and has to be forced back in place. (they loose one star for this)

I bought these second hand and have beatem them well myself. Still I think they will hold up for many years to come.
Notice, the price in US seems quite high. Last time I looked, they were 150 Euros in France. At end of season, rental places often sell used skis with bindings for closee to nothing. The skis are generally useless, but if you can find a pair with Silvretta 500s on you may get a bargain.

In summary, I am very happy with my bindings, and would highly recommend them.

web-site: www.silvretta.de

bbense - Aug 15, 2003 11:15 am - Voted 5/5

Untitled Review
I orginally got these because they are the only AT binding that will work with mountaineering boots, but after a spring of using them with both leather mountaineering boots and light AT boots. I think they are worthy of consideration as a general purpose ski mountaineering binding.

The ski crampon that is used with these bindings can be put on/off without getting out of the bindings. You can easily switch modes from climbing to skiing by only using your ski pole. While the release mechanism does require some fine tuning, it works reliably and releases both vertically and laterally. The binding is light and durable.

While I would not reccomend these bindings for lift served skiing, for BC

skiing they work really well, particularly in changing terrain. Even if you never

plan to use your mountaineering boots for AT skiing I think these bindings should be considered if you are getting a setup for BC only skiing.

warriorpoet - Mar 9, 2008 11:40 pm - Voted 5/5

Very versatile
These bindings are very versatile and easy to use. The dual-position ascension device does wonders to reduce lower leg fatigue. I can do pretty much everything with just my ski pole, except put them on. These bindings are the full package. I've used them with Scarpa Invernos, and even LS leather Makalus, though neither provide enough support for real aggressive slopes.

Ice and snow do tend to jam up the heel lock-down mechanism, and you have to clean it out in order to lock it down. This can get a bit annoying in wet snow. However, there is a secondary forward lock position. It doesn't lock it down as tight, there's still a little play, but it never gets jammed up. Also, as with most bindings, it's kind of hard to figure out how to adjust it if you don't have the manual, and contacting Silvretta was no help at all. I don't have the LSV version, though, which I hear is easier. Once you have them figured out, they're easy.
Note: When you fall sideways, the heel plate will slide to the side to release your boot. To put it back in place: There's a hinge on both sides of the heel plate, where it connects to the rear bail. Look close, and you can see a secondary hinge point that can be can rotated along a semicircular groove. Rotate it all the way forward, and the heel plate will snap back into the center position. If you have the manual, then your set. I almost broke it trying to figure it out.

I've heard that mountaineering boots don't release as well when you fall, but that hasn't been a problem with these bindings. In fact, I've experienced the exact opposite.

Despite the few quirks, I still give these bindings four stars. The only reason I docked a star is because Silvretta never responded to my inquiry. Great product, terrible support.

Update: I finally got the user manual from Silvretta, so I've upgraded my vote to 5 stars. The email of the guy at Silvretta is drew.saunders@salewa.com.

BlackForrest - Dec 23, 2008 4:41 pm - Voted 5/5

Just works
The Silvretta works fine for me with Ski or AT boots and also with Koflach Degre mountaineering boots. Of course, skiing anything serious is impossible with the Koflachs - I wonder how they did it 50 years back.
Clicking in is easy, even on steep angles with lots of powder.

adventuretactical - Jun 3, 2009 1:39 pm - Hasn't voted

Silvretta 500
So I shouldn't have any issues using Silvretta 500's with my older late 1990's 2-Pin Dynafit Tourlite 3 AT boots that I bought (and haven't used yet)? I've been climbing for years, but just now getting into AT skiing for approaches etc.

Viewing: 1-5 of 5