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daveo

Review: VIST Tech Vistflex plate

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Purpose: For historical record keeping and if anyone can benefit from this review, then cool.

Disclaimer: All things considered, this is the best plate I've tried, but I prefer the most damp and comfortable ride, so this review might be biased...

About me: I consider myself a lower intermediate level rider. Been on hardboots for 10 years, and softboots for 8 before that. I ride 30-40 days per year in Japan and maybe 0-5 in Australia. Never raced or anything, just snowboard for fun. I've ridden a whole bunch of boards from Coiler, Prior, Donek, Kessler, Oxess, SG; plates from Apex, Vist, Bomber and SG; bindings from F2; boots from Deeluxe, UPZ and Mountain Slope.

Construction: Composite aluminium and plastic. Hinges either end can be connected by sliders or locked. So the plate can slide back and forth and pivot up and down and remain centered. There are multiple configurations that the plate can be ridden.

Riding: Some copy pasta: So a few years ago, I borrowed a plate from a friend of mine. It was a Donek AF plate, rather poor quality if I recall, it was a bit banged up but reasonably new and this Japanese guy takes extremely good care of his gear. Half way through the day I broke the hardware mid turn. Luckily for me the components which failed didn't give me a broken leg. Took the plate off, next run I severely sprained my ankle due to the bumps I encountered that I wasn't expecting because the plate had isolated me from them. From then on, I decided I will always ride a plate and I always have ridden a plate.

I've ridden a VIST 07 & 14, Bomber BP 5mm 4x4, SG Carbon Plate System Hard, Apex X-Plate, Apex Race V2 ASIP, Apex Gecko Free and the VIST Tech Vistflex.

I rode this on my Oxess SXR182 this season, I probably have around 20 days on it. I don't think the plate actually stiffens the board at all. I tested this with 40kg, 60kg and my 85kg of weight and the board reached the same point regardless of having the plate connected or not. After riding the board without the plate and then with the plate, I didn't feel the board was riding longer, unlike the Apex plate, which did feel as though it lengthened the board. I rode it with both ends sliding, middle posts extended up by 2 washers. This I found gave the most natural flex and didn't hinder the flex of the board.

The best thing I can do is compare this to the Apex plate, since I've used that most extensively. To me I felt like where the Apex eliminates a lot of small to medium bumps, the Vistlex reduces them significantly, but when the Apex cannot eliminate or reduce a bump you'll get jolted, but the Vistflex will still reduce the bumps significantly. So overall, it seems to reduce bumps all bumps more effectively than the Apex, but it does not fully eliminate them like the Apex. I guess some people would call the feeling the Apex gives you as 'numb' but I felt like it was significantly when compared to say a Bomber BP or SG Carbon plate, which were 100% numb. So, I think one is safe to say that the Vistflex gives feedback from the snow and a connected feel, not a disconnect like the Apex. I felt like the Vistflex gave more power transmission to the board than the Apex, a more direct connection to the board and snow, but at the same time being more comfortable overall. Where the Apex was more chill and relaxed, the Vistflex felt like it was more aggressive. The plate is heavier than the Apex, but I never felt it while riding.

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Edited by daveo

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not a big fan of being out of the feedback loop thanks to the plate.

I have Allflex in the stash waitin for next winter. Reading above stuff makes me optimistic about the way it may perform.

cheers

Edited by slapos

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