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Atomic Medusa 110: does the extra +5mm stand height matter?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 

My wife is about a twitch away from pulling the trigger on getting a new pair of Atomic Medusa 110 boots (all mountain, narrow last, low volume performance boot, great snug fit for her narrow foot, very comfortable).  Her only concern, and this might be the deal breaker, is that Atomic states that this boot has a +5mm increased stand height compared to other boots. According to the Atomic site, this is to help the edge grip for wider skis, many of which have bindings mounted flat.  The Atomic men's Burner series has the same construction.


The question is, how will this extra 5mm height affect the performance of the skis that she owns?


Her widest ski is the 85mm Dynastar Exclusive Legend Powder, and these have the standard Look bindings mounted on lifter plates (not the Fluid rail).  The other two skis in her quiver are the '07 Head Supershape Speed (66mm waist, FF14 binding on a CP13 plate); and the '09 Fischer Progressor 8 (73mm waist, RF12 binding on the Railflex bed). 


About 75% of her ski days are on hard snow (Head; Fischer) here in eastern Canada and east US, with about 10 to 15 days per year in the Rockies/Wasatch/Tetons (Dynastar).


Of particular concern are the Supershape Speed, as the binding plate already puts her at a considerable stand height.  She is extremely reluctant to change the performance of this ski for the worse, as this is her Go-To hard-snow daily driver, and her favorite ski.


So....although 5mm doesn't sound like much, what kind of an affect can she expect? Will this be a detriment....or a benefit?


BTW, the only other boot that might be a good fit for her is the Tecnica Viva Inferno Crush, but it is just not available in any stores in our area (Toronto).  She tried on an Inferno 110 race boot, which was an excellent fit, but she is looking for a touch more all-day comfort in the liner and boot board than a race boot can offer.  Hence the Medusa being at the top of the list....


Thanks in advance!


Edited by SGN - 2/13/11 at 4:00pm
post #2 of 10

5mm should be fine.


also look for some other brands to try.  Most companies make a 98mm boot. so you should have some other options?

post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 

Dave, it's been hard to find a low volume, narrow 98mm boot, low instep, ~90 to 100 flex.  Not that much on the market in woman's boots of that ilk, at least that is available in the shops here.  She has tried the following: Rossi Electra Pro 100 (not bad fit; too much volume at instep, forefoot); Tecnica Viva Dragon 100 (too much volume); Salomon Instinct (weird bowlegged knee alignment, awkward overall fit); Lange Jr. Race 90 (great fit, crappy liner); Lange RS110 SC (too much volume; not sure if a shell size down would work, as store did not have stock); Atomic Medusa 110 (very good fit, more comfort oriented, perhaps a bit roomy -- store did not have next size down to try); Tecnica Inferno 110 race (excellent fit, concerns about all-day comfort/warmth from the liner). 


The woman's Inferno Crush would probably be the ideal fit, and if it fits like the orange unisex Inferno 110 that she tried, then it should be near-perfect fit right out of the box.  But....as I mentioned, no shop in all of Ontario seems to have this boot.  We will be in Panorama, Banff and Calgary in mid-March, and will look further there. 


In the meantime, the Medusa is still a possible strong choice -- definitely more comfort in the 24.0 than others.  She needs to try a 23.5 in that boot to see if she can get a more-snug fit....and she needs to be confident that the +5mm stand height is not going to negatively impact the performance of her skis.

post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 

Update:  I looked at the stand height specs for her Head and Fischer skis, and found that they are already at the maximum recommended height of 34mm and 35mm, respectively.  This is based on the FF14/CP13 combination, and the Railflex 12 system.  From what I was able to find on the web about max. stand heights, it seems that 35mm is the highest that is recommended (not including the ski itself), and anything higher may cause balancing problems.


So it seems that the Atomic boot with its extra 5mm is not the best choice for what she skis on at present.

post #5 of 10

Let's see, the manufacturers have correctly decided that many skiers will prefer their wide skis with the bindings on the deck and Atomic has decided to compensate for that.  Interesting!  I would say Atomic is incorrectly exploiting a marketing opportunity.


Why does your wife require a woman's boot?  Is it for the fur lining or the pretty color?  If she wants a good boot that fits and skis well I'd by a boot in the appropriate flex and width and ignore marketing claims.



post #6 of 10
Thread Starter 
Why does your wife require a woman's boot?  Is it for the fur lining or the pretty color?




If you had actually read my second post and taken note of the boots that she has been trying, you would realize that fur lining and pretty colours are far down the list of priorities for her.  In fact, there are several men's....sorry....correction..."unisex" boots on that list.  The only boot with any bright "bling" is the Tecnica Crush, and the only reason that she is considering that one is that the fit will highly likely be similar to the Inferno 110 race boot that she tried, as it shares the same basic shell design but has a more comfortable liner.


Furthermore, if you had noted the skis in her quiver, two of the three are unisex performance carvers, and the third is a no-nonsense all mountain ski.....no flowers or pretty colours on any of those. 


Your insinuation that she is wowed by fur and feminine colours and marketing hype is simply not helpful or accurate.


My question was a simple technical one regarding additional stand height, and it's effect on narrow carving skis with bindings on plates/rails.  A question which no one, including you, has satisfactorily answered yet.

post #7 of 10

You said women's boot in your second post.  The point is you are correct there is not much on the market in 98mm lasted boots for women.  There are however plenty of wider boots with fur and pretty colors.  So if she wants a woman's boot she that is pretty much what she'll have to settle for.


98mm boots are called race boots in order to give them a category and easy definition.  In my store we don't call them race boots, we call them "C" width boots because that is really what they are and we use them to fit anyone with a "D" width or narrower foot.  Why there is the perception that a wider boot is more comfortable for someone with a narrower foot I don't know.  They fit and ski poorly.


If your wife measures "C" or less she should be in a 98mm boot, whether you call it race or not is irrelevant.  At a competent shop a "D" width foot can easily be put into a 98mm shell with outstanding results.


Every boot company makes 98mm boots in 90 flex.  If she doesn't want one that is called a race boot she could look at Dalbello Kryptons.

post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the advice.  She knew from the outset that her foot was narrow, and didn't even bother looking at 100mm+ boots.  All of the boots she has been looking at are 97 or 98mm.  And even so, most of those have had too much volume in the instep, forefoot, lower shin, or heel and ankle area. 


She has a very good idea of the fit she is looking for, how a shell fit works, what parts of the boot are supposed to fit right to get good performance....etc..  No worries....she knows what she wants, and will get a unisex boot if the fit is right on. 


FWIW, her present boot is the Lange CRL90W (totally bling-free wink.gif), narrow glove-tight fit.  In fact the fit so snug that she skis in Vapor-Thin hockey socks (almost stocking-thin), because if she wears even thin merino ski socks, the boots are too tight and she gets cold feet! Circulation is still so good, however, that without hot packs or boot heaters, she is warm down to -20 C in the Vapor Thin socks.


Who knows? There's a good chance she will end up in the Inferno 110 after all....nothing else has fit so well to date.  It may need some shell softening, however....we'll see....  The Medusa might work if she can find it in a size smaller than what she tried, but it's not available here.  We have not seen the Krypton anywhere.  We will be out west in March, and will check what's available there....or wait 'til next fall.


post #9 of 10

He is the deal. The 5mm just makes for a longer leaver. This is a good thing. If u can get a good deal on the Medusa 110 get it now. The Medusa 110 disapears next year. They  will have a Race 110 with a lady cuff, Medusa 90 and 70. The liner on the Medusa 110 is excellent for the woman foot. Comfortable but supportive.


She will use less energy to do what she has been doing all along. Oh, by the way. get a 1/4 inch heel lift in the Medusa 110, trust me...


post #10 of 10
Thread Starter 

Thanks Johnny.  She really needs to try the Medusa again in a 23.5....the only store that had this boot in our area had only a 24.0, which fit OK (good shell fit on one foot....a touch too big on the other).  Just a little too comfy for a brand new boot, if you know what I mean...once that baby packs out a bit, it'll be too big.  She's used to a very snug fit, and the 24.0 is not it.  We will try to find a 23.5 somewhere.  Panorama and Banff are coming up in March -- we'll look there.


OK, I gotta ask....why the 1/4 inch heel lift? Any particular reason why this boot needs one?


Overall, that is a very nice boot -- well made, good materials, liner seems esp. nice, no girlie colours or graphics, snug fit -- good one!


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