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  1. #1
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    Dynafit FT12 or G3 Onyx - a summary

    After reading lots and lots of forum posts and reviews, I'm still torn between the G3 Onyx and Dynafit Vertical FT12 for my new touring skis. They will also be used for groomed pists a lot. So I'm trying to sum up here the advantages they have over each other. If I'm missing anything, or you disagree, please chime in.

    Weight: Dynafit
    Durability: Dynafit
    Retention: Onyx
    Ease of use: Onyx
    Features: Onyx
    Price: Equal
    Warranty/support: Equal

  2. #2
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    Since weight are durability are major considerations for an AT binding I would favor the dynafit. Retention is important, ease of use less so. I would go dynafit just because it is used so much and has a long track record.

    Why no consider Plum?

    I agree it is a constitutional right for Americans to be assholes...its just too bad that so many take the opportunity...
    iscariot

  3. #3
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    I don't think they're equal in price, unless you're getting a smoking deal on the FT 12s. I think Backcountry.com is selling the Onyx for less than $300, whereas I don't think I've seen the FT 12s for less than $450.

  4. #4
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    If a 10 DIN will suffice, the Dynafit Speed is lighter and the most robust Dynafit binding, and they can be had for around $300 if you shop around. GregL is reporting a bit longer heel pin on the newer Speeds. If your ski is stiffer than a noodle underfoot and/or you have a short BSL, the Speed pin length not a problem.

    I hear this and that about toe pin retention, but I don't get it. Dynafit toes have more than ample retention in tour mode (so long as you don't have an older pair of boots, e.g., some older Scarpas, which occasionally blow out of the toe in tour mode, an issue which has been fixed on all tech boots, AFAIK) and in downhill mode Dynafit lateral release works great. The vertical (forward) release is occasionally an issue with Dynafits, i.e., a 10 DIN vertical release setting is sometimes more like a 9 DIN. Speeds work great for me and I'm a big boy and often ski with a full pack.

    OP, all of this and more (e.g., Onyx breakage) has been discussed in numerous Tech Talk threads. Search, boy, search

  5. #5
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    AKbruin might also has issue with the Dynafit durability

    I agree it is a constitutional right for Americans to be assholes...its just too bad that so many take the opportunity...
    iscariot

  6. #6
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    Nice save on thread summary and relocating this to the appropriate forum!

    IMO Onyx skis better inbounds as it feels (self-admitted subjectivity) it has better elasticity

  7. #7
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    Lee, I'll take your word for it. Dynafits are inelastic, teeth chatterers on ice and frozen, but IME ski very well on firm that's not frozen hard.

    hutash, I'd wager that a substantially higher percentage of Onyx binding have failed. Also, many or most of the recent reports of Dynafit failures have been related to the FT12 toe overhang defective design, not present on Speeds or ST.

    Re support: Dynafit stocks and sells spare parts. Don't know if Onyx does.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Steve View Post
    Lee, I'll take your word for it. Dynafits are inelastic, teeth chatterers on ice and frozen, but IME ski very well on firm that's not frozen hard.

    hutash, I'd wager that a substantially higher percentage of Onyx binding have failed. Also, many or most of the recent reports of Dynafit failures have been related to the FT12 toe overhang defective design, not present on Speeds or ST.

    Re support: Dynafit stocks and sells spare parts. Don't know if Onyx does.
    Thx Steve! Yah as part of the testing regimen I have to take them inbounds and tour. Seems fair as many people have that question. Fwiw I agree with you re Dynafits and how they ski

    G3 retailers that install Onyx usually keep spare parts or if they don't can order spare parts. I know that because i had a fair share of troubles with the beta Onyx

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by hutash View Post
    Why no consider Plum?
    I live in Norway, and I haven't seen the Plum bindings for sale anywhere, I'm afraid.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by AKbruin View Post
    I don't think they're equal in price, unless you're getting a smoking deal on the FT 12s. I think Backcountry.com is selling the Onyx for less than $300, whereas I don't think I've seen the FT 12s for less than $450.
    Here in Norway, the FT12 and Onyx cost exactly the same. Would I be ripped off if choosing the Onyx?

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Steve View Post
    I'd wager that a substantially higher percentage of Onyx binding have failed.
    You're probably right about that. But is that counting failures on the first generation (09/10) binding? If you consider only the 10/11 version, do you think the numbers would be the same?

  12. #12
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    I don't know. I'm not an Onyx man, I haven't seen any info re whether the 10/11 binding addressed the early failure issues and, most importantly, the binding hasn't been around long enough to make any meaningful assessment re long term durability. On the other side of the equation, Dynafits have a very good record of durability, there's oodles of info out there on that and the FT12 toe overhang issue seems to be confined to the FT12.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Steve View Post

    hutash, I'd wager that a substantially higher percentage of Onyx binding have failed. Also, many or most of the recent reports of Dynafit failures have been related to the FT12 toe overhang defective design, not present on Speeds or ST.
    Sorry, I am not saying they do, just that AKBruin is on his 5th? failure for the same set of FT12s. If they were a car he could claim a lemon law recall.

    I agree it is a constitutional right for Americans to be assholes...its just too bad that so many take the opportunity...
    iscariot

  14. #14
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    In all fairness, I think it's been mostly bad luck in my case. Most everybody else I know with the FT 12s has been pleased as punch with theirs (which, of course, has made my experience all that more frustrating).

  15. #15
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    you can get mounting plates for the onyx so you can use one pair on multiple skis-and adjust fore aft position. I've got 10 plus days on a pair of onyx on bluehouse districts, one or two lift served just to ski them before I did any tours on them, no probs.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by Big Steve View Post
    GregL is reporting a bit longer heel pin on the newer Speeds.
    I was waiting for someone to confirm this - on a pair of Speeds I got last week from Telemark Pyrenees (latest version, with ribs and triangular hole in the toe arms and with the cool red-anodized stretchy Dynafit leashes) I measured 11.26 to 11.41 mm from binding base to end of the heel pins. I recall that the old spec was 10mm and change and the Comforts were 12mm+ so it appears they've lengthened the pins by 1mm, but I don't have any older heels around to measure. Big Steve, do you have some older Speeds around? If you lay something flat across the two heel pins and measure where you put the Dynafit 4mm plastic gap tool, what is the distance?

  17. #17
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    The Speed heel unit is identical the 1990s TLT IV. (Well, okay, the top plate went from having the little cutouts to all smooth & shiny, but, whatever...) And with the Fall 2011 debut of the Speed Radical, I doubt the Speed will ever change.
    The Speed toe unit until Fall 2009 was identical to the even earlier ~1993 TLT (except for the pincers losing their replacement feature, and the plastic baseplate gaining a crampon slot). Although really I should say all Dynafit toe units (except for the two-year-duration TriStep evolutionary dead-end) until Fall 2009 were identical to the ~1993 version: the only changes were that the Comfort got a thicker plastic baseplate and then the Vertical ST/FT/FT12 changed the shape of the plastic lever. In Fall 2009 the toe unit's "arms" were redesigned and the base got the little ribs. Then in Fall 2010 the FT12 110mm version stiffened up the springs.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Drumlin View Post
    I live in Norway, and I haven't seen the Plum bindings for sale anywhere, I'm afraid.
    It will be available next year, imported by Uhrweder sport. Catalog, go to page 4
    simen@downskis.com DOWN SKIS

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan S. View Post
    The Speed heel unit is identical the 1990s TLT IV.
    Thanks, Jonathan. Either my memory or measurement could easily be hazy, but I thought there was a 2mm difference between the length of Speed and Comfort/ST pins. Do you have a measurement for the dimension shown below on current Dynafit models?


  20. #20
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    Using that very same caliper model:
    Plum Guide = 11.98
    Dynafit Comfort = 12.35
    Dynafit Vertical = none w/ me, but should be same as Comfort
    Dynafit Speed (09-10) = 10.87
    Dynafit Tech (~2005) = ditto
    Dynafit Tech body w/ Comfort/Vertical pins = 12.45

  21. #21
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    fwiw.. I saw a girl that had sheared off one of the toe pins on a brand new pair of Onyx this winter. And no, she didn't weigh 240 lbs. Mellow skiing inbounds was all it took. They where mounted on a pair of Liberty Helix.

    "They will also be used for groomed pists a lot." - are you sure Dynafit /Onyx is what you are looking for? I love my ST's for touring, but would go for Fritchis if I knew I was to use the setup on hardpack... prerelease..toepiece rip out etc.
    Last edited by Nordic75; 06-05-2011 at 02:56 PM.

  22. #22
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    If you are on groomers/inbounds a lot go with Duke/Barrons. They are not a great touring set up, but the best inbounds/out of bounds combo. I didn't like Freerides as much. Dynaduke or sollyfit plates are another great option if you can afford an second set of bindings.

    While any of the tech binders ski well enough for resort use, I don't think they will stand up to a lot of inbound use. They fail often enough with the relatively small amount of BC vert they are subject to.

    I agree it is a constitutional right for Americans to be assholes...its just too bad that so many take the opportunity...
    iscariot

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jonathan S. View Post
    Using that very same caliper model:
    Plum Guide = 11.98
    Dynafit Comfort = 12.35
    Dynafit Vertical = none w/ me, but should be same as Comfort
    Dynafit Speed (09-10) = 10.87
    Dynafit Tech (~2005) = ditto
    Dynafit Tech body w/ Comfort/Vertical pins = 12.45
    Do they not still mount bindings to have the same length of pin in the boot? That's what I was told when mine were mounted but by the sounds of how important you guys are making this, it seems that this isn't so?

    I have last year's speeds and I've found issues with both toe and heel release. I started locking the toe in due to that, and now I can fairly easily 'tele release' if I lean forward and ski aggressively, do a jump turn in deep snow, or land a drop of 5+ feet leaning a bit forward. Would longer pins help with that or be the same?

  24. #24
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    Quote Originally Posted by endure View Post
    Do they not still mount bindings to have the same length of pin in the boot?
    No, though it might seem logical to do so. Most competent shops will mount tech bindings to manufacturer's spec for the gap between boot heel and base of the binding - 4mm for Speed/Classic and Plum, 5.5mm for Vertical (used to be 6mm for Comfort/Vertical). Many veteran Dynafit users have scavenged Comfort/Vertical heel pins and installed them in Speeds leaving the gap at 4mm, which according to Jonathan's chart will give you a significant increase in insertion depth.

    All things being equal, it's nice to have more pin insertion so long as it doesn't interfere with lateral release or step-in function by dragging on/catching on hard plastic, but I don't think this is at the heart of your forward release problem - a release value of 10 on any current Dynafit is actually more like an 8.5 or so with an alpine binding, and with less elasticity. That's why people who aren't 145 lb. rando racers have long wished for higher RV at the heel in Dynafits, and one reason people have gravitated to Plum.

    Edited to add: I guess in Dynafit's case, applying the current specs for heel gap will give you functionally the same pin insertion - 6.85mm/6.87mm - but the 5.5mm spacers only started to show up late last year, so for years the Comfort/ST/FT heels had LESS depth when set up "properly" . . .
    Last edited by gregL; 06-06-2011 at 11:02 AM.

  25. #25
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    aha.. makes sense. thanks for the clarification. Yea, I have mine at 10 but I don't really trust that

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