How do you go a 180 degrees away from what your big brother is doing? That’s the question that Forum has to ask themselves when working on anything under the watchful eye of Burton. Their binding line while having similarities in certain parts are still a whole other beast. This is how the Republic stacked up to multiple uses.
Board Used: Rome Factory Rocker, Forum Destroyer DoubleDog, and a slew of other decks that were listed in previous reviews.
Angles: 18 Negative 15 Goofy
Location: Breckenridge, Keystone, Arapahoe Basin
Conditions: Bluebird sunny park laps, powder days, slush, ice, snowing, high winds, every type of condition you can encounter.
Boots Used: K2 T1 DB Size 10
Binding Compatibility: I never ran into any problems with this board lining up with every deck I put it on due to them all being a 4 hole board.
Binding Adjustability: Micro adjustments on all the straps, highback had the Burton/Forum whatever trickle down FLAD, and then there were some screws on the frame that you could probably loosen up to move stuff around but these fit right out of the box.
Straps: The toe strap has a full encapsulating cap, which honestly they could cut the foam out of the center that covers the toe box and it would probably fit even better. The heel strap was cut anatomically and there wasn’t any issue with it fitting over the boot or causing a pressure point.
Highbacks: Did their job and only have a slight contour to fit around the back of the boot. I didn’t find any natural forward lean when it was set at zero.
Binding Flex: This has that Good Vibes hinged disk which honestly I have never felt it do anything whether riding a camber or alternate cambered deck. The over all flex of the binding was slightly below a mid flexing all mountain binding which lends itself more to being freestyle oriented. It wasn’t so soft that putting it on a cambered freeride deck that it couldn’t charge but it wouldn’t have the response of something on the slightly stiffer side.
Ratchets: Never stuck and would always come on and off flawlessly.
Rider in Mind: Park guy that will still play around on the mountain but doesn’t want over the top, turn on a dime type of response.
Personal Thoughts: What the hell does that hinged disk do? I’ve never once felt a difference in how the board flexes with it. Over all the bindings not bad the adjustments are easy to figure out and I’m pretty sure a trained monkey could set them up if need be. The toe strap should just lose the full foam cover and go to a cut out like a lot of other companies are doing. The footbed which covers the giant gaping cut out in the base could use more dampening as I felt a lot of vibrations on various terrain. The nice thing though is that it does have a bit of canting in it to help with your alignment so those of you rocking gangsta wide stances will probably love this.
What They Say: The foretelling of freestyle. John Jackson and Pat Moore have conjured up violent spirits to guide them into the future of freestyle snowboarding. Acting as their medium, the Republic evokes these spirits from a history of powerful yet flexible bindings. Dark graphics done by famous rock-and-roll band The Bronx, as well as new Simmer Down canting and the Good Vibes Hinge Disk, settle these violent spirits, channeling them into a nearly occult-like paranormal freestyle experience.
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