The Vimana Scando binding is a lightweight responsive binding that gives the big names out there a run for their money.
After reviewing Vimana’s flagship board, the VUFO, we took a look at their long running binding called the Scando. Vimana have had the Scando binding in their lineup since day one and have been making incremental improvements each year, based on feedback from their pro team. This being their fifth year of the Scando, you can see the effects of this nonstop testing/feedback loop: the design is minimalist and durable, leaving just what works with no unnecessary trimmings.
Coming in just all black or all white, simple is the name of the game here. With all of their boards (except one) being either black or white too, choosing a binding colourway boils down to either matching the board or going for a nice contrast. You can’t really go wrong here. There are also two pro graphic options for Brage Richenberg and Enni Rukajarvi, and a stiffer carbon/kevlar infused version called the Scando Gold.
The Scando binding is built on a chassis made up of a mix of urethane and triax fibers. This, along with the highback, result in a medium stiffness binding perfect for all round riding. The sides of the chassis are rounded up which stops the binding from digging into the topsheet, which happens sometimes with other bindings.
The alloy buckles are well made and run smoothly. They’re attached to the Team straps which are a comfortable injection-molded design. They are very flexible and bring an element of playfulness to the ride. With Vimana’s freestyle background, you know they made them like that with tweaking grabs in mind. That flexibility lets both the toe and ankle straps mold themselves to fit a wide variety of boot shapes. It also lessens the chance of having the straps break when you step on them in really cold temps.
The forward lean adjuster is simple and easy to use. You just pull it out, push the adjuster up or down and push it back in. This is one of the best I’ve ever used and it makes adjusting your forward lean a stress-free exercise. You’ll have no problems experimenting with different angles in between runs.
To get to the mounting discs, it’s easy to lift the padded footbed with the small attached tabs. No need for a tool, and you don’t feel the tabs underfoot when riding. For riders with large boots, the disc can be rotated 90 degrees for toe/heel adjustment to center the boot. Unfortunately, as is common with many 4×4 discs, you then you lose the ability to do micro adjustments laterally. Vimana are moving to a mini-disc next season which should expand the stance options.
The footbeds have extendable gas pedals to accommodate larger boot sizes, however the ends are not bevelled. This means for larger boot sizes (10.5 & up) low stance angles could result in edge overhang on narrower boards. You can see in the photo below, with a size 10 boot I’m right at the edge on a 159 VUFO with a 256mm waist. Again, like the mounting disc, this will be remedied next season.
How do they ride?
The Vimana Scando binding definitely rides above its pay grade and is good for a wide range of riding. It’s not too stiff for beginners and it’s supportive enough for rippers in the big jump line in the park. Brage Richenberg showing off what is possible with the Scando:
The baseplate and highback are responsive and the straps can be cranked tight without losing circulation in your feet. Note that if you don’t crank the toe strap tight, there is a tendency for the front end of your boot to be knocked off the tray when hitting unexpected chunder. It’s happened to me on other bindings with low foot tray walls, and can be easily avoided with tight straps.
If you find yourself comparing specs between the Vimana Scando binding and the big name manufacturers, the first thing you’ll notice is the lack of trademarkable catchy names for all the parts. Don’t be put off though, fancy nomenclature doesn’t necessarily make stuff work better. The Scando works great, without the big marketing budget. It’s perfect for someone in need of a medium-stiff all mountain binding that will leave them a lot of extra coins to put towards more days on the hill. The Vimana Scando binding comes in at the lower end of the pricing ladder, but delivers a ride worth way more than its price tag.
Get more information about Vimana bindings at their official site.
Disclosure: The Vimana Scando bindings were provided by Vimana Snow.