Originally Posted by cpc12
my surefoot boots are very hard to put on and take off so Im considering a new boot.
Are the Salomons the only moldable boot ?
I read that these boots are easier to put on and take off due to the softer material
As a longtime sufferer in the trenches of the boot wars, I can say this much:
1) The only boots that are significantly easier to put on/take off are cabrios (three piece) boots. They are made by Dalbello, Full Tilt, and sorta by Nordica. But they involve other issues which may or may not make them a good choice for you. Moreover, if a two piece shell is too easy to get on and off, odds are that it's way too big for you. Or so soft that it's pretty much for beginners. Sorry for being the bearer of bad news, but the ritual of getting boots on and off is just part of skiing, really. Some brands have reps for being particularly tough - Langes come to mind - but none are easy. One thing that helps is making sure they're at room temp before trying. Don't leave them in the car at night, or put them in the trunk in the am while you go eat. Personally, I find it a lot more pleasant to put boots on sitting down in the lodge than standing beside the car in the lot, but YMMV. In any case, the fact your boots are hard to get on and off is no reason to dump the boots. Do your boots do what you want them to once they're on?
2) Frankly, boots are fairly conservative in their tech; it's not like some models are computer controlled or made of piezoelectric materials. Companies use the same three or four plastics, maybe a bit of carbon so they can charge more, and the same fairly ancient design with two pieces and four buckles. Marketing departments make a lot of hoopla over microadjustable buckles, or a minor change in the last, or "adjustable flex" (couple of screws that can be removed). So being a sucker for high tech doesn't mean much with boots. And all upper level boots will do the job in terms of your skiing needs. So the deal's about fit. Unclear about Sollies being the only "moldable" boot, but AFAIK, they just use a lower temp plastic along the lower front side. Any higher level boot from any maker can be heated and stretched by a good fitter. Then ground for the details. So again, while a "moldable" model may be the one that fits you best, it might not. I wouldn't limit my choices just to boots that make that claim. Also, if you pronate enough that your foot completely flattens, you should have a custom insole that supports your arch. Among other things, this will reduce the functional width of your foot.
3) Comfort to some degree inevitably represents a tradeoff with performance. Yep, the right fitter can make several higher performance models work for your particular feet, but work doesn't mean they'll feel comfy compared to leather boots you wear around town. It means they'll feel a lot better than the wrong models fitted by an amateur. Also, keep in mind that different brands have characteristically different lasts, so the shape of your foot, not just its length and width, are relevant to a good fitter.
4) Cannot speak to SureFit, but I do know that a thick liner is not a solution to a shell that doesn't fit you. The liner will be inefficient at transmitting force from your leg to your ski, so you'll have to work harder and still will end up feeling behind your skis. Also, a thick liner will allow your foot to bounce around once it packs out a bit, and that'll result in some serious discomfort. The key is the right shell, not the right liner.
5) So get thee to a qualified fitter, and ask their advice with an open mind, rather than showing up with an agenda, such as a liner you want to use.
Edited by beyond - 12/23/13 at 8:04pm