NOW Bindings Drive

IMG_21462016 Now Drive by JJ

Use: Freestyle/all-mountain
Binding size: L
Boot size: 12
Color: Black/Orange
Price: $329.99

  • Skate-Tech
  • Flushcup Technology
  • Highcup compatibility
  • NEW Hybrid Flipit straps
  • NEW buckles 2.0
  • Hanger is nylon reinforced with 30% fibreglass
  • 3-D toe straps EVA combo
  • NOW tool-less adjuster straps
  • Calfback highback
  • T6160 Alumi-ring and Forged disc
  • Bushings available in medium (45 shore) and hard (55 shore)
  • Lifetime warranty program
  • Flex rating: 7
  • All-mountain/freestyle

IMG_2147As we’ve mentioned in previous binding reviews, comfort is a huge issue. I am continually impressed with the strides in binding improvements. They’ve come a long way since the baling-wire bindings on my Barfoot.

A few years back, JF Pelchat launched a game changer to the binding market with his NOW Bindings. I’ve been a skater as well for a long time, so I was very curious about the skate tech. Inspired by skateboard trucks, specifically the way you pivot on the kingpin, NOW Bindings pivot from edge to edge, and rest on bushings on either side. The bushings are interchangeable, and are offered in hard, medium, or soft. Another great feature is the stitch-free hybrid ‘Flipit’ ankle strap; you can swap the left and right one around to change the properties of the binding. When the thicker part of the padding is on the top, you get more support; flip it around and its better for freestyle. The tool-less system makes little or big adjustment a snap.

I was a bit worried about the flex rating on the Drive, but found them to be really responsive and very comfortable. They gave me great support in all situations. The highback is a little higher than I am used to, but really provided the needed support riding mixed conditions during spring riding. The fit is pretty snug, but overall very comfortable. I’ve had my share of feet issues, and had some concerns when I looked them over; the padding in the foot bed looked thin, but the 15mm EVA foam and the rubber bushings are all you need. I knuckled a jump in the park and was blown away at how little of the impact I felt in my feet.

It took me a bit to get a good feel for the pivot system, and I wasn’t exactlysure how much I should feel. You don’t necessarily sense the plate moving from side to side, but what you do get is a crazy responsive ride. I totally felt like I was carving on a skateboard at times; the system allows for a more fluid, natural motion where you’re pumping the board through the ankles. Rather than making standard snowboard turns, I was able to just get into a flow of leaning hard and letting gravity take over.

IMG_2145Everything about these bindings shows the passion JF Pelchat has for snowboarding. The box, instructions, packaging, etc. are all glowing with design excellence. The bindings themselves have so much detail, like logos on the straps, buckles, and bushings along with work mark on the mounting hardware.

The Drive by JJ were amazing in all conditions: pow, chop, and even park. There was nothing I did not feel comfortable riding in these bindings. Give NOW Bindings a try; you won’t regret it!

Style: (5 / 5)
Comfort: (5 / 5)
Features: (5 / 5)
Overall: (5 / 5)

 

 

NOW 2016 DRIVE from now snowboarding on Vimeo.

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