Hands-on Gear Review

Dynafit Speedskin Review

Price:  $190 List | $161.46 at Backcountry
Compare prices at 2 resellers
Pros:  Light, well balanced performance, and an excellent tip attachment.
Cons:  Exclusive to Dynafit skis.
Bottom line:  Limited to being compatible with Dynafit skis, these lightweight skins strike a great balance between glide and grip.
Editors' Rating:   
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  • 5
Manufacturer:  Pomoca
Weight per pair:  550 g
Weight per skin:  275 g
Manufacturer:   Dynafit

Our Verdict

Dynafit sells the Speedskins for use with their own skis. While it is conceivable that one could modify other brands of skis for use with Speedskins, we do not recommend that. The Speedskin is a moderately performing product in our test. Its greatest hang-up is compatibility. You can only use Speedskins with Dynafit skis. An important thing to know about the Speedskins is that, while they are branded as Dynafit, they are actually manufactured by Pomoca. Also in our test, the Top Pick winning La Sportiva LS Tour Skin is built by Pomoca. The two perform mostly similar, except in glide. The La Sportivas glide better. Also, the La Sportivas have a bit more compatibility range. The difference between the LS Tour and Speedskin is negligible enough that we still recommend the Speedskins for use with Dynafit skis, even though you could use universal skins like the Editors' Choice Black Diamond Glidelite Mix STS on Dynafit skis.


RELATED REVIEW: The Best Climbing Skins for Backcountry Skiing


Our Analysis and Test Results

Review by:
Jediah Porter

Last Updated:
Sunday
May 31, 2015

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Dynafit Speedskins have a great tip and tail attachment, with solid fabric and glue. If you purchase Dynafit skis, we recommend you also choose the company's corresonding skins.

Performance Comparison


The Dynafit Speedskins are the only product in our review that disengage first at the tip. Also in this photo: Top Pick Dynafit TLT 6 boots  Editors' Choice Arc'teryx Macai jacket  Editors' Choice Smith Vantage ski helmet  and Editors' Choice Patagonia Powder Bowl pants.
The Dynafit Speedskins are the only product in our review that disengage first at the tip. Also in this photo: Top Pick Dynafit TLT 6 boots, Editors' Choice Arc'teryx Macai jacket, Editors' Choice Smith Vantage ski helmet, and Editors' Choice Patagonia Powder Bowl pants.

Glide


The Speedskins, as the name implies, are tuned for gliding. While they do not top the field, and are, interestingly, slower than the other Pomoca skins we tested, they glide better than about half the test roster. The nylon/mohair blend is Dynafit/Pomoca's attempt to balance glide with durability. Full mohair skins wear out much faster than blends but glides much better.

Grip


The Speedskins grip just fine. Certainly, something like our Top Pick winning G3 High Traction is going to grip better, but the Dynafits grip well enough for all backcountry and ski mountaineering use. More grip is a bit of a solution without a problem. Technique and track setting easily overcome any shortcomings in a skin's grip.

Glue Integrity


The glue alone on the Dynafit Speedskin is unremarkable. It peels from itself easily (an attribute to be appreciated, really) and disengages from the ski quite readily too. However, it is consistent and long lasting in its stickiness, despite visual changes that suggest degradation over time. In terms of "stick-to-it-iveness", the Dynafit skins have more than just adequate glue going for them. The tip attachment is the best we've tried, and the skins are stiff enough to resist rolling and peeling while affixed. Overall, with the good-enough glue and better-than-average supporting features, the Dynafit Speedskins deliver a solid glue performance.

Close up view of the clean and efficient tip section of the Dynafit Speedskins on compatible Dynafit Grand Teton skis.
Close up view of the clean and efficient tip section of the Dynafit Speedskins on compatible Dynafit Grand Teton skis.

Icing/Glopping Resistance


In certain conditions snow melts into the fabric of the skins. If that liquid water then comes into contact with fine-grained, colder snow, ice forms in the fabric and conglomerates with even more snow. This "glopping" can accumulate many pounds of extra weight and eliminate any glide characteristics of the skins. All skins do this, but some are worse than others. We found the Speedskins to do better than many others in our test, tying for first place in this category with the award winners Black Diamond Ascension Nylon and Black Diamond Glidelite Mix STS. That being said, all skins ice up, and need to be scraped and waxed periodically in certain conditions.

Close up view of both fabric and glue side of the Dynafit Speedskins. What looks like failing glue on the black portion is not at all. It is just a change in texture.
Close up view of both fabric and glue side of the Dynafit Speedskins. What looks like failing glue on the black portion is not at all. It is just a change in texture.

Packability and Weight


The Speedskins are tied with a bunch of hybrid nylon/mohair skins for packability. It seems that percentage of mohair is directly proportional to packability. More mohair is more packable. Blended skins are generally all pretty similar in their weight and bulk. Full nylon skins, like the G3 Alpinist are noticeably bulkier and heavier.

Ease of Use


As the only skins with a tip-first removal, and a glue formula that pulls apart very easily from itself, the Speedskins are definitely the easiest to use in our review. Peeling skins from the tip is easier, whether the skis are on the users' feet or not.

Lead Test Editor Jed Porter testing skis and skins in Banff National Park  Alberta  Canada. Dynafit skis and skins  Patagonia Powder Bowl pants  Smith Vantage Helmet  Dynafit TLT 6 boots.
Lead Test Editor Jed Porter testing skis and skins in Banff National Park, Alberta, Canada. Dynafit skis and skins, Patagonia Powder Bowl pants, Smith Vantage Helmet, Dynafit TLT 6 boots.

Compatibility


The Speedskins can only be used with Dynafit skis. Sure, one could make pretty dramatic modifications to other skis in order to install a notch in the tip, but this is extremely unlikely and unnecessary. The Dynafit scores a three in this category because Dynafit offers several ski models with accompanying Speedskin options.

Close up view of the tail attachment of the Dynafit Speedskins.
Close up view of the tail attachment of the Dynafit Speedskins.

Best Applications


We can recommend these skins for all-around backcountry touring and ski mountaineering with Dynafit brand skis. In many ways, the option to use these skins can be a selling point for some models of Dynafit ski.

Value


The Speedskins are the second most expensive skin we tested, and limited to just one brand of ski.

Dynafit Grand Teton skis  Dynafit Speedskins  Black Diamond Ascension Nylon skins  and G3 Alpinist skins lined up between sunny ski sessions in Silverton  Colorado.
Dynafit Grand Teton skis, Dynafit Speedskins, Black Diamond Ascension Nylon skins, and G3 Alpinist skins lined up between sunny ski sessions in Silverton, Colorado.

Conclusion


For Dynafit skis, we recommend matching skins. We do not always make this same recommendation. For instance, to pair with our Best Buy-winning Backcountry Skis, the Fischer Hannibal, we recommend the Black Diamond Glidelite Mix STS.
Jediah Porter

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Most recent review: May 31, 2015
Summary of All Ratings

OutdoorGearLab Editors' Rating:  
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
  • 5
 (3.0)
Average Customer Rating:  
 (0.0)
Rating Distribution
1 Total Ratings
5 star: 0%  (0)
4 star: 0%  (0)
3 star: 100%  (1)
2 star: 0%  (0)
1 star: 0%  (0)


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