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Bindings

NOW Pilot 2018-2019 Snowboard Bindings Review

If you like the look of the NOW Drive but wasn’t something just a little mellower, the answer is right here: the NOW Pilot snowboard bindings. A confident rider can still get plenty done with these, but you don’t have to be all about pointing it.

THe NOW Pilot bindings are built around the brand’s patented ‘Skate-Tech’ design. To keep it brief, the chassis pivots around a central kingpin, so it actually rocks a little as you shift your weight from one edge to another. The pressure is distributed into two rubber bushings on either side, with the goal of reducing the chatter that can cause foot pain.

“The Now Pilot bindings fit the bill for any experienced rider that loves freestyle”

The bushings come in three variations of firmness (rated ‘Softy’, ‘Mid-Chub’ and ‘Morning Missile’ this year – make of that what you will) and can be easily swapped to fine-tune your ride. The NOW Pilot bindings come with the hardest version as standard, which makes sense given that they’re relatively stiff.

Elsewhere these have freestyle-friendly ankle straps, which can be flipped round to allow for even more flex, and an asymmetrical highback that offers more support on the inside of each leg (where it’s most needed).

The Now Pilot snowboard bindings definitely fit the bill for any experienced rider that loves freestyle, whether in the park or way out back.

Tester’s Verdict

Andrew Duthiewhitelines.com

“I test at least one pair of NOW bindings every year, in the hope that I’ll have a Road To Damascus moment and fall in line with the “these are so good I’d never go back to regular bindings” crowd. No such luck so far.

“On Endor-style tight tree runs, where the margin for error was non-existent, the response these offered saw me safely through each time”

Having said that, the Pilot bindings – like all NOW models I’ve had a go on – are comfortable, responsive and have great cushioning – so what’s the problem? Whether it’s all down to the Skate-Tech, or it’s got more to do with the materials used, these work really well.

I rode them pretty much exclusively in powder, so won’t speak to their ability in the park, but they felt very comfy and secure all day. The stiffness was great for higher speeds too; we did a fair bit of Endor-style tight tree runs, where the margin for error was almost non-existent, and the response these offered saw me safely through each time.

So while I’m not yet ready to be a ‘NOW or Never’ rider, I’d happily ride a pair of these all winter long.”

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