Union Contact Pro Binding ReviewMarch 29, 2017
- Solid track record
- Fun selection of colorways
- Premature wear on footbed
- Time-consuming base plate set-up
The Union Contact Pro is an affordable, lightweight, high-performance binding. You know that old saw about gear: “Do you want it cheap, light, or good? Choose two.” This binding goes three for three. The drawbacks were minimal—the footbed showed wear earlier than some and set-up took a couple of extra minutes.
The Union Contact Pro is a perennial favorite binding of many riders because it performs well, doesn’t break the bank, and for some, Union is a bit of an underdog brand. Redesigned for ’16-17, the latest iteration is lighter and more comfortable than previous generations and includes an upgraded toe strap. The “Contact Pro” moniker is derived from how little contact the binding makes with the board—just 5%.This minimizes the interference on the flex pattern on the board.
With an aluminum heel cup and high-tech nylon, AKA Duraflex, highback, the Union Contact Pro is pretty burly and is backed with a lifetime guarantee. The foam footbed showed some wear after a few weeks of riding, which would have been less noticeable if the foam wasn’t orange. Black would have made it less noticeable.
With a medium flex on the high back and base plate, the Union Contact Pro is for the all mountain freestyle rider. There’s plenty of flex for butters and the bushing does an admirable job cushioning landings.
Out of the box, the Union Contact Pro is impressive with a mix of materials that are solid, but in hand are lightweight. Not something easy to do.
Just 715 grams, 5 grams lighter than last year’s model, the Union Contact Pro is one of the lightest bindings we tested. With medium baseplate stiffness and high back stiffness, response is predictable but fast.
See above: with medium stiffness on all fronts, the Union Contact Pro is one of the most comfortable bindings in the test.
EASE OF USE
Set-up of the Union Contact Pro is easy. First up, the disk that you use to bolt down the bindings to the board works for both Burton’s Channel system and the ubiquitous four bolt system. Adjusting the cant of the highback is also easy and tool free.
Stephen Krcmar splits his time between Mammoth Lakes and Los Angeles. A snowboarder, cyclist, and motorcycle guy, he skied 76 days last winter. He’s written about the outdoors for more than 16 years.