The Speed Radicals are a remarkably simple, and highly efficient, binding. They come with a leash but, note, brakes aren't an option. Read our full review by clicking on the little arrow in the orange bar below the image.
Here's a short video from Benedikt Böhm, Dynafit's CEO (who was the GM at the time the video was shot). He walks us though the binding's various features and also discusses the Speed Turn binding (which other people swear by).
Let's start forward and move aft. Note the Power Towers just beneath the pins on each of the "jaws." These facilitate the step-in process and are key for Dynafit newbs and appreciated by long time Dynafit fans like me.
Here is a picture of the toe-peice engaged with the boot. You can't see the Power Towers because they retract once the claws have engaged.
For people moving from a frame binding, this little picture highlights the Speed Radical's zero resistance, full 90° pivot point that makes the uptrack easier—especially when kick-turning on a switchback. See the little scoop hooks at the back of the toe piece. This is where you can easily add a ski crampon for those icy uptracks in springtime.
To the heel piece. How about this for an elegant bit of engineering? To get from walk to ski mode, this heel piece is unidirectional. Some Dynafit models spin both ways, but not the Speed Radical. The little doohickey sticking out between the two screws serves as a rotation block. Note that the heel piece can move for/aft 25mm for adjustment purposes.
Here we are in ski mode with the pins engaged. There are four points of boot contact with the Speed Radical—two at the toe and two at the back. For the uninitiated, this may not seem like much. I've found that the Speed Radical provides way more than enough binding power for me and my style of skiing, and that includes lift service on occasion. My DIN setting is around 7.5 and these go 4-10.
Let's talk touring mode... here we are with the "flat" mode, perfect for long approaches like what you might find in Grand Teton National Park. Note that some Dynafit bindings, like the Beast and the Speed 12, don't have a fully flat setting. I like to have this option and it's one of the many reason I like the Speed Radical.
Here is the mid-level heel lift deployed.
Here is the high-level heel lift deployed. These heel lifts are far and away the best on the market (in my not-so-humble opinion). They are a breeze the flip up with your pole handle, click into up-and-down position with authority and are generally fast and easy. Because of this, you use them more and experience all of the associated benefits.
Here another shot from toe- to heel-piece. This picture brings out the simplicity of the Speed Radical system and the four points of contact.
OK.. just one more picture. This side-view shows the magic of the heel piece pins. They provide all the support and retention you need—the heel sole doesn't even make contact with the ski.
I've skied on many AT and telemark bindings over my (gasp) 30 years of alpine touring. I started on G3 tele bindings, switched to AT and went through a couple pair of the old Fritschi Freeride frame bindings... Then I made the switch to tech bindings. I skied the G3 Onyx back in 2011 and it has been Dynafit products ever since (including the Dynafit TLT Radical ST). Following the expiry of the Dynafit patent several years back, virtually every other binding manufacturer has come out with a tech-type binding—all riffing off original Dynafit design and innovation. (To check out all our reviews, click on over here to our binding review page).
Though Dynafit has had a couple bindings that may not be homeruns in my mind (like the Beast) the Speed Radicals bring together all the best qualities of Dynafit—and less—for a superior binder. I have skied the Dynafit Speed Radicals here at our local ski resort, Whitewater, as well as on hut trips, day tours, etc. Long days, long approaches, you name it. These are my fave binding.
Favourite features include: best heel-lifts ever (so simple with a pole handle), no frills design and features, cool colours, lifetime guarantee.
Though some of you readers may shy away from skiing without brakes, I find it liberating. You have to be aware of it when changing over, for sure, but certain tricks enable care-free, brake-free skiing. Leashes are OK for the occasional in-bounds lap but I prefer not to have them on in avy terrain.
If you are confident of your ability to hold onto your skis and appreciate simple, proven,lightweight touring bindings, I heartily recommend the Speed Radicals.
Price: $449.95 CAN / $399US
Weight: 730g / 1.62lb (per pair)
Release Value: 4-10
Heel Adjustment: 25mm
Brakes: None (leashes only)
Riser levels: Mid and High
Colours: Gold, Blue
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