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gear of the week

Gear of the Week | Dynafit Beast 16

Maximum freeride performance for all off-piste specialists who want to do without heavy equipment

by Lorenzo Rieg 01/24/2015
Downhill performance like an alpine binding, combined with almost all the ascent qualities of a pin binding and all this at a weight of well under 2 kg per pair? Sounds too good to be true? No, it sounds like the Beast 16 from Dynafit ...

When Dynafit launched the Beast 16 last season, the first pin binding really aimed at freeriders, expectations (and the price) were correspondingly high, but the quantities produced were not. Nevertheless, I was able to buy a copy "cheaply" in the sale and have enjoyed skiing with it ever since...
And to get straight to the point: the binding really delivers what it promises on the descent and beats the competition in pin and frame bindings in this area, usually by far. Full throttle, with wide skis, in bad snow? The Beast does it with ease. 10 meter high drops? Backflips? No problem if you dare, the binding can handle it. A few kilograms more on your ribs than the average touring skier (muscles, I mean, of course), but still don't want to be in slow gear all the time? Z-value up to 16 makes it possible...
In general, the ride feel and behavior is more like an alpine binding than a touring binding. Due to the design-related elasticity, the power transmission is not quite as brutally direct as with classic pin bindings, but of course there is also no wear-related wobbling, as is usually the case with frame bindings. False releases don't seem to be a problem either. I haven't had a single one so far (I always ski with other pin bindings locked, otherwise the ski keeps falling off my foot).

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During the descent, the binding is definitely convincing, but this also comes at a certain price, which is not only reflected in the wallet, but also when climbing up. Firstly, of course, there is the weight. At just under a kilo per binding, this is of course significantly less than a frame binding, but many times that of a classic pin binding. Of course, the moving mass is low due to the system, but I still notice, especially on ascents that are longer than 1000 vertical meters, that I am not on the move with a Dynafit Radical or similar. Another disadvantage is the fact that there is no flat climbing aid. As the stoppers are held in place by the first climbing aid in ascent mode and this is the only way to prevent the boots from clicking into the rear jaws, you always have to be on the move with the first climbing aid. Although this is not as high as with other touring bindings, it is still annoying on flat and medium-steep terrain, especially if you are using touring boots with a large shaft rotation and unnecessarily lose stride length due to the "forced climbing aid". Switching from ascent to descent mode is also very tricky, as the climbing aid has to be released with quite a lot of force or with the help of a ski pole, which is not an elegant solution...

All in all, however, the binding does justice to its intended use and cuts a fine figure both for freeriding and pure touring, although its perfect metier is probably to be found "in everything in between".

Buy the Dynafit Beast 16 at our partner store Bergzeit...

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This article has been automatically translated by DeepL with subsequent editing. If you notice any spelling or grammatical errors or if the translation has lost its meaning, please write an e-mail to the editors.

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