There's a lot to like about Bent Metal's re-entry into the binding market. For example: Who else would build their baseplates with the same layering as a snowboard, right down to the Jamie Lynn artwork on the mini topsheet? Bent Metal's Flex Control Drive Plates (the mini snowboards between your boots and the board) are made at the Mervin factory and come in three different composites and flex levels: calcium bi-ax (medium soft), aluminum/boron (medium), and carbon fiber (firm). We tested the Transfer bindings with the aluminum/boron drive plate. Testers said the Transfer earned a top spot in the all-mountain category for its responsiveness, comfort, versatility, and style.
The upper highback wraps the upper boot for added support and response; overall the highback has a mid-level flex and isn't as stiff as it looks. To adjust forward lean, spin a cube-shaped block of urethane to four different heights. The urethane has the dual benefit of durability and dampening vibration. The drive plates feature excellent dampening ability as well. Testers railed turns through chop and refrozen snow, praising the binding's precise, smooth heel-to-toe response even in the nastiest conditions. The ankle and toe straps contribute to that response, too. Wide and supportive, the ankle strap is strong and secure and contoured just right over a number of different testers' boots. Likewise, the toe strap is more supportive than many of the flossy versions out there these days. The aluminum buckles have great action and seem built to last. For all its durable features, you'd expect the Transfer to be heavyweight, but it rode surprisingly light underfoot.