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Race boots for me?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

I'm was talking to a local bootfitter who recommended the head raptor 130. I am concerned that a race boot may be to stiff for me and have had a bad experience a few years ago with a shop after buying the Salomon Impact 10 on their recommendation. I have complained about those boots since I first started skiing on them. They are too soft, and not enough angle which the bootfitter tried lifting the heal and shimming the backs to no satisfaction. Sometimes it feels like I could break them from the flex. Unfortunately, they were a full custom liner to add to the expense.


Also due to the size of my foot, full custom liners are the only real option(size 14.) I'm 38, 6'4", 240Ibs, expert skier that does approx 40 days a year, mostly bowls and tree skiing. Any recommendations or guidance?  I currently ski on Head Kiss of Death(stiff) as my daily drivers, Head Rock and Rolls (soft)with the wife, and my beloved Rossignol B-Squads (dead)as my rock skis if that helps.

post #2 of 6

I am not sure I follow you.  You are concerned the 130 Raptor might be too stiff...but have tried race boots before and found them too soft? 


If it helps.  The Raptor (RD) comes in a 150, which can be bolted to a 160.  So 130 is not even the stiffest you can get that boot.


As for liners...well yes you have big feet, but if you get a shell to fit, the corresponding liner should also.  Its not a case of a "14" shell, with only size "12" liners.

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 

I have not tried race boots before which is why I'm asking? As far as liners, prior to going with the custom liner I would lose a toe nail every season due the boot fit. This has happened with multiple boots even with the toes blown until I went with the liners. Maybe thats what sold me. So the 130 is not to stiff in your opinion?

post #4 of 6

6'4, 240lb expert....130 wont be too stiff.



As for losing toe nails - more likley the case was the boots were too big before.  Your foot was sliding forward, causing impact with the toe and the end of the boot.  The custom liners, fit tighter, preventing you from sliding forward, thus preventing you from losing your toe nail.  So the point is, you "may" not need custom liners again, since you will have a different shell.

post #5 of 6
The 130 IMO is stiffer than the Lange RS 130. Is it too stiff? At your size, it shouldn't be. You can adjust the stiffness from 120-140 via the screws at the rear of the cuff. What you'll also like is the lateral stiffness from the full block. I've skied mine at all three settings but find 130 works the best for all mountain/off piste while 140 is really nice on piste, but I'm not on piste all that much other than teaching or on a refrozen coral head day. I'm 205 and 6ft, race background. Tried the softer boot thing once... Didn't dig it. It's tiring over flexing you boots. You end up squatting down to adjust your CM aft...

So, all said and done, if the boot fits, wear it. I'd be pretty surprised if you didn't enjoy how they ski.
post #6 of 6

The Head Raptor comes in the Raptor RD and RS.


The Raptor B3 RD is a 120 - 130 -140 flex boot depending on whether you put in all the bolts in the back of the boot.  This is narrow race specific boot that has a 95 mm last (width).  Probably not a good choice for a typical skier.  It has a lot of plastic and is also stiff laterally.


The Raptor RS 130 also has 120 - 130 - 140 flex, but is a bit wider at 98 mm last.  It is a race ready boot, but does not have the really tight fit of a plug boot like the B3.  This would be a good choice for an aggressive and strong skier.


Your Solomon Impact is 110 boot with a 100 - 106 mm last (the new ones are moldable) and is more of a general purpose boot that is good for strong skiers with a mid to wide foot. It is not as stiff laterally as the head.


Having sufficient "stiffness" is dependent on skiing style, aggressiveness, and skill, in addition to the weigh of the skier, but your weight would probably call for a stiffer boot.  Remember that stiffness that is measured as flex only refers to forward stiffness, and not lateral stiffness.  You will probably find the lateral stiffness of the RS much better than the Impact, in addition to the "flex".  My 120 pound racer daughter uses a 120 flex Rossi race boot, but the boot would be too much for most people her weight.


I've used the RS 130 and found the stiffness to be be good for me.  I weigh 175 and I'm an aggressive skier.  Ultimately, the boot didn't work fit as well as I'd like, so I went to a Solomon CS 130 which fits my foot like a glove.  One of my kids coaches, who weighs over 220 pounds bought the RD 150, and ended up softening it quite a bit for daily skiing.  he found the stiffness much too harsh for free skiing.


Your are kind of all over the place with boot width, and I'd suggest that you use caution to make sure that the boots fit well.  Get a sense of whether you have a narrow, medium or wide foot.  Try on a bunch of boots before deciding on the RS.  The 2013 ski mag buyers guide does a nice job of identifying a bunch of good boots with narrow, medium and wide fit.  Other boots to try on for a narrow fit include the Atomic Redster, Rossi Experience 130, Lange RS 130 (same as rossi), and Solomon x max 130, but if you have a wide foot, these night not work well for you. Too wide of a boot cab introduce slop, but too narrow can be uncomfortable.


With the RS, assuming a good fit,you can put in all the bolts and have a 140 flex boot, or if that feels too stiff take out a bolt and lower the flex, but you can't easily make it wider.

Edited by canadianskier - 10/8/12 at 10:28pm
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