Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Ride "Vstrap"

Last year Ride came out with the ContraBand, an easy in/out binding. Watching their video on their site, there are couple of details that have bugged me. I have worked five years in Product Development as a Material Engineer and what I have learned the more screws and setup options , the higher the chances of screwing up.
You can't expect a consumer to do it perfectly...it needs to be dumb proof. As Albert Einstein said: " Make everything as simple as possible, but not simpler" and I would agree with him, it is quite challenging to invent something that is complicated but is simple to use.

So to go back on the binding, the Vstrap doesn't have cushioning on the vstrap, which could be definitely uncomfortable if you do anything more than street rails. Then I don't think it is well enough designed so that your foot is completely secure. And finally all those screws in the cold, humidity could get loose and put too much pressure on strap when riding. I would give a A for effort, a C+ for design.

Looking at the new Ride Nitrane for 09/10...it seems they have put more cushioning and increase the width on the toe area so that it doesn't pinch on one spot. It sure look like a good way to save five seconds to get in/out and the next year binding sounds more solid than this year.


Ride said...

Have you tried it? Before you "Review" something or say you have more engineering experience than their engineers I think you should try it.

BTW all bindings take a little setup to size them to your boots.

Franck Juvin said...

Yes I tried those and like I said I tried more comfortable bindings before but it is based on a personal opinion and from the reviews I read some people have been really pleased with those. As far as screws getting loose, I mentioned it as an eventuality because consumers have to do the setup and you can't expect them to do it perfectly no matter how simple it looks. Product Development teams are often rushed to provide new tech each years so through this review I didn't not intend to criticize the people behind the bindings but I hope you would agree there is always room for improvement which seems to be the case with the 2010 model over the 2009 model.