Spark R&D Arc 2020-2021 Splitboard Bindings Review

  • Sizes: S, M, L
  • Entry System: Classic
  • Price: $385

Whether looking for your first splitboard bindings, or a seasoned veteran on the skinning track who favours a lightweight, softer flexing option for touring, Spark R&D’s Arc binding has you covered. As one of the lightest bindings in their line, the Arc is a great bit of kit for stepping out to explore new terrain or even just going for a quick skin up your local hillside.

“The Arc is all about striking that perfect balance between weight and stiffness.”

The Arc is all about striking that perfect balance between weight and stiffness. Spark have taken the maximum possible cut-outs from the aluminium baseplate to drastically reduce its overall weight, but not compromise any overall stiffness. Then the lightweight, minimal design of the Pillow Line straps provide ample response and structure without the use of overly excessive or unnecessary materials. They’ve even cut a slit across the centre of the heel strap to let your ankles flex more on the descents and maximise the surfy sensation.

As with all Spark bindings, it’s built around the T1 System, which includes the stupidly easy Tesla Snap Ramp and Side Lock for outrageously fast transitions. It’s not an exaggeration to suggest that some people in your touring party will take longer to fasten their bindings than it will take you to transition into walk mode.

On the way up, Spark have made the ascents that bit easier with built-in Whammy Bars to shift the climbing pin between its 0°, 12° and 18° positions.

On the way back down, the Arc provides you with all the performance you’ll need for cruising through the backcountry and building an appetite for more ambitious lines.

Tester’s Verdict 2019/20

Rhys JonesTDC Snowboarding

“Spark’s Arc is an awesome splitboard binding. It looks good and is really comfortable to ride in.

They’ve made it super light by cutting away a load of the baseplate metal, which also helped to access the pucks for easy adjusting – bonus!

The highback has a ride and tour adjustment on it which is really easy to switch between. They sit around a mid-flex and felt nice and forgiving, which give me a mellow, cruisy feel to your riding. Both the toe straps and ankle straps are really comfortable. Despite being pretty minimal, I found they flexed well and sat in a good position across my boot.

Like all Spark bindings, it’s super easy to change from riding mode to touring mode with their simple, no-hassle tesla interface.

The Whammy Bar climbing wire worked really well. It allows you to go from high to low to stowed with minimal effort and keen even be adjusted on the fly. They have options for the climbing wire heights are ideal for mellow assents, steep assents and touring on the flat.

“Like all Spark bindings, it’s super easy to change from riding mode to touring mode with their simple, no-hassle tesla interface”

Even though the Arc is the softer, more lightweight binding in Spark’s range, it still felt solid to ride in. I would recommend these to anyone wanting looking to get into longer tours, especially those who favour saving energy on the way up to enjoy the shred on the way back down!”

Tester’s Verdict 2018/19


“‘Member when splitboard bindings were (at best) foot-contortingly stiff or (at worst) your normal binders mounted to adaptor plates that saw you hovering two inches above your deck? Hours spent fighting pins into ice-packed holes on windy ridgelines?

That was how I felt about the whole ordeal anyway – until I first took out a pair of Spark R&D Arc bindings. They have the air of having been designed by someone who actually spends a lot of time splitboarding, so as a consequence they work about as well as you could ever hope for.

“They feel like normal bindings! There really isn’t any higher praise”

Simple things like being able to operate the risers with your pole, without reaching down, are great, but a fit this comfortable and light but still flexible is a godsend. So good you’ll want to mount them to your resort board!

Swapping between touring and riding modes is the simplest out of any system – just pop up the toe piece, slide in and go. The straps fit well with my oversized feet and don’t cause any hassle on the way up, but again on the way down is where they come into their own. They feel like normal bindings! There really isn’t any higher praise.”

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