Originally Posted by Metaphor_
Fiitters can really modify shells and liners, and good fitters can create a good fit with the vast majority of foot shapes (and nearly everyone has a unique foot shape) without resorting to a foam injected liner.
Yes! An injection liner is based on heel hold goals (as in zero heel lift). This is a performance goal and should not be sold as comfort fit independently. They are exacting and while are fitted precisely to every crevice of your foot, there are easier, lighter, warmer and cheaper ways to get comfort.
Also, if the shell fit isn't great, you are basically pumping in a bunch of foam to mask the problem.
It might help the OP to understand the difference between a foot bed molded to the mechanics of your feet in a ski boot vs. something like Superfeet.
I have high instep arches and pronate a little bit. Pretty similar for both feet. I can use Superfeet and they feel the same on both sides. The mechanics across my metatarsal arch are very different. My foot specialist, a.k.a. boot fitter was able to tell me which side my turns where stronger on by evaluating my feet. Did the same for my wife. Tell me more, please.
A lot of buckle cranking is compensatory for foot movement, e.g. pronation, when you have a performance shell fit. I was doing a lot of cranking or my left foot would twinge severely at the forefoot on my left foot when pressuring the ski - this with $50 Superfeet beds, mind you. By twinge I mean excruciating sharp pain. Cranking cut circulation and warped shell fit. Pain or cold, pick your poison. I am street size 11 in a 26.5 boot, 100 mm last.
Time for orthotics. To build these, I stood on a soft moldable surface, kind of like sand under excercise ball material. This was in a skiing position for the correct pressure in this stance, and Lee (my fitter) aligned my legs and feet. Press a button and it felt like when you stand in the ocean in a wave and your feet sink in. Then the material hardens up and you are now standing in a mold of your feet as they should be in perfect alignment in your boots.
From there the moldable orthotic bed is heated up and placed in the mold of your foot, and you stand on it until it cools. When you see the result of this, even with normal looking feet like I have, you realize that the actual shape of your foot and its associated mechanics when skiing is nothing like the shape of store inserts. Your foot has so much greater shape and potential movement.
Time to ski. Buckle normally, just a two finger fit. No cranking. No pain. Drastically improved control and skiing performance.
The reality is you have no other shoe that is designed for zero sole flex. Your foot is going to move around unless the footbed is the mirror image of your foot or you have sausage stuffed into a super tight shell (and still....) If you want a comfortable fit without stability loss, I cannot recommend orthotics highly enough if you trust your evaluation.
My fitter gets referrals from orthopedists, so bear in mind that what I am describing is not a Surefoot branch outlet as he does medical level inserts and hiking boots as well.
Also keep in mind that I will spend a premium for a solution that I believe will work for me for a long time. The two boots I bought from chain shops like REI where I got a shell fit cost 80% of my entire custom setup and caused me exceptional amounts of pain and aggravation. Shell fit cannot fix foot mechanics, it can only limit their expression to some extent, which is why so many people ski off the shelf boots and crank 'em down.