Binding Review: 12-13 Union Contact Pro
27 Jul, 2012
Location: Winter Park, CO
Snow Conditions: Hardpacked to softpacked groomers.
Setup: I rode the Union Contact Pro Bindings on the Capita DOA with my Vans Ferra Boots size 8.
Time to set up the binding: These were the first bindings of the day so easily set up and adjusted. With Unions, the heelcup gets adjusted to fit my boots better so that took a couple extra minutes.
Fit: I tried the Union Contact Pro bindings in the M/L sizing which fits my women’s size 8 boots just fine with adjustments.
First Impression: It was my first time riding the Contact Pro’s but rode very consistent, comfortable and still capable of powering down the mountain.
Appearance: The Union Contact Pros come in black/gray and purple/green. I got to ride the super bright neon purple and green colorway which was my all time favorite. Super outrageous colors but mixed well to make the Contact Pros stand out among the other bright Union bindings.
Comfort: The Contact Pro bindings were good on comfort, lots of padding in the straps and absorption padding underneath below your boots. The highback design doesn’t allow for much padding but is where you need it at the lower and upper connecting spots to your boots. The straps were comfortable and padded. The dampening on the binding does help with terrain absorption to make a less-bumpy ride on the mountain.
Functionality: Designed by Gifi Ruf, the Union Contact Pro features a carbon injected contact base – dupont zytel ST, contact pro dupont zytel ST highback, triple zone injected EVA bushings, shift on the fly forward lean, CNC machined heelcups, injected magnesium buckles, tool free size adjustment, all new 3D direct connect strap system, multi layer tapered strap core, universal disks, all new toe cup design and grade 8.8 hardware with a lifetime warranty base. The binding is designed to be lightweight, increase binding to board feel and give you a very comfortable ride for the mountain. The tool free adjustments make it easier to adjust when you need to.
Flex: Definitely not as soft at the Contacts I’ve ridden in the past, the Contact Pro’s deliver a more versatile all mountain freestyle flex for your board. I rode these on the DOA and never felt like they weren’t enough binding for the board, they were plenty good. Stiffer highback with good power to it, felt stiffer underfoot with more powering and comfortable straps.
Response: You can count on response for Gigi Ruf’s binding, definitely more responsive than I was expecting but not overbearing on the ride. It was very smooth, consistent and supportive. The Contact Pro Dupont Zytel ST Highback had good power and support.
Toe Strap: The Contact Pro binding features the all-new toe cup design which I’ve tried on a couple other union bindings. It does mold well to the toe of the boot. I didn’t encounter any slippage when I rode them over the toe of my boot during the demos.
Overall Impression: The Union Contact Pro bindings are Gifi Ruf tested and approved as his pro model binding. Designed for a powerhouse of riding styles, this binding delivers a consistent ride for the mountain. The binding helps with dampening and board feel so you don’t feel as bounced around on the mountain.
Shay’s Honesty Box: When I first rode the Contact years ago, I liked it but it ended up being too soft for me to ride all the time. However with the Contact Pro, that definitely eliminated the fear of softness with a binding that has the same components but delivers more power and precision than relaxing ride. I had no problem riding it with the DOA and it was very consistent for mountain riding.
Ready to buy? Head over to evo to shop their full line of 2012 snowboard bindings until the 2013 bindings come in.
On Snow Photos
Union Contact Pro Description
Review Disclosure: I demoed this board at the SIA On-Snow Demo at Winter Park, CO.