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  • Lampwick Bindings Advice?

    I’m committed to giving lampwick bindings a go this season. What is your experience with them (good and bad)? Do you have any tips or tricks regarding their use? (FWIW, I wear mukluks if the conditions are right.)

  • #2
    I realize this may not help but here goes...first off, I've never used lampwick for bindings but do use long strips of wool. This is due to my involvement with 17th & 18th century living history programs and lampwick wasn't around during those time periods. I use this when wearing my winter moccasins or mukluks and have found them durable and able to hold up in various snow conditions. They untie easily enough and never seem to freeze up in a way that prevents me from getting out of them. I've used the wool strips with various toe hole styles and regardless of how simple or complex the set-up, they've worked well. About the only thing I think that makes the wool different from the lampwick is the wick seems stiffer so I would guess the performance is similar. Hope that helps a bit. I'm sure others will chime in soon enough.

    That's all for now. Take care and until next time...be well.

    snapper

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    • #3
      I’ve used nothing else for the last decade or so, and if there’s snow, I’m out on them every day for a couple of hours,,, maybe 3 or 4 months each winter. Adds up to a lot of miles... Not much to tell,,, adjust them at home when you first put lampwick on them,,, walk an hour or two and the bindings will go all baggy... Not because of anything other than settling in,,, just retighten them and go again... Usually the second time convinces them to stay put... Can’t think of any reason to go back to any other sort of bindings, and I’ve used several sorts... Couple of different ways to strap them on your feet,,, no reason not to use one or the other...

      Click image for larger version  Name:	BABB8A47-7ACB-4E72-A3E6-2083E624C279.jpeg Views:	2 Size:	3.92 MB ID:	1655
      Click image for larger version  Name:	A039F54D-5317-44FE-84C9-A57DCC8FEBC4.png Views:	2 Size:	5.97 MB ID:	1656
      Last edited by Haggis; 12-28-2020, 08:56 PM.

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      • #4
        Thanks for the info, snapper and Haggis. Much appreciated. We’ll have fresh snow here tomorrow to try out these bindings. Looking forward to a no-hands-needed and lighter binding than what I’ve been using.

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        • #5
          After too many years of using other bindings, it's amazing how something this simple can work so well. I'm sure you'll be happy after you get them set to your winter mocs or mukluks. Best of luck on your first adventure using them.

          That's all for now. Take care and until next time...be well.

          snapper

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          • #6
            I always carry a couple of pieces of Kevlar cable pulling tape (mule tape) in my pocket, I normally use my old, much prepared Faber work harnesses, but on more than one occasion I or someone in the party has needed a quick, expedient method of replacing a harness, so out it comes. like Haggis says, after a couple of hundred yards you need to readjust them. I prefer the mule tape because it's extremely strong, and stays somewhat supple even when frozen at -40. Most electricians, cable, or phone guys'll have some used stuff laying around, just wash the lube out in hot, soapy water.

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            • #7
              I have used lampwick for the past couple of years, after making a pair of moccasins. Before I used a ratcheting binding.

              To me the biggest advantage is the ability to put on and take off the binding hands free. This is a huge thing when you are camped in deep snow, the trails haven't scintered enough to walk on and you have to put on snowshoes every time you step out of the tent. Bending over to ratchet bindings gets old real fast.

              A second advantage that I don't see mentioned very often is that they are so quiet. Plastic bindings always, always squeak, pop or make some other annoying noise. The lampwick and moccasin combo is silent, and that is really nice.

              They are not without disadvantages.
              - they are a bit floppy and not as good for technical terrain.
              - they don't work as well with modern boots like Sorels. You tend to lose the hands-free feature.
              - They are difficult to get sized just right. It takes a few adjustments to dial them in. This can be difficult if the bindings are a bit damp and frozen and you can't get the knot undone.
              - Similarly they usually have to be readjusted if you switch boots, for example if someone else uses the shoe or you have to switch to boots in warmer temps.

              Even so, I like them and will continue to use them, especially with moccasins. That is the combo that shines.

              Kinguq.

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              • #8
                Thank you for the advice, all. I’ve been using the GV ratchet bindings and love them for their stability but loathe getting them on/off and the noise they make. Mule tape is a great idea. I’ve got some of that lying about that I’ll throw in the kit. 👍 Super handy stuff, that.

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                • #9
                  I like them and use them quite often. You should experiment and see which style of hitch does the job comfortably for you. I know 4 different hitches and play around with them all.

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                  • #10
                    Thanks for the info, all. Hiked several hours in the lampwick bindings and am really liking them. One modification I made was using a ladder lock to adjoin and tweak the heel strap tension instead of a knot.

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                    • #11
                      Your ladder lock idea is a great one, I think.
                      I've never owned anything else but lampwick, but one challenge that I've had is tying and untying knots on frozen wick. Maybe your ladder lock arrangement will alleviate that!?
                      Please let us know how you find it is working after you've tried to find its flaws.

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                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Undersky View Post
                        Please let us know how you find it is working after you've tried to find its flaws.
                        Here's to not finding out the hard way! 😁 Just in case I do have a blowout/failure on the hardware, I left the lampwick plenty long enough to tie in a knot. The hardware isn't sewn on so it can be swapped/removed with no fuss.

                        Attached Files

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                        • #13
                          Yes! I bet even the Naskapi would nod in your direction with this improvement, 4estTrekker.
                          I'm going to follow your lead.

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                          • #14
                            great idea 4estTrekker. like it a lot

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