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The search for boots... medial and lateral malleolus fitment

post #1 of 7
Thread Starter 

First I'd like to mention I did read the Which Boot Will Work For Me guide, many of Lou's excellent articles, Charlie Bradley's Boot Fitting 101 and 201.

 

I'm a man but I need 24.5 boots (had my feet measured many times and it was confirmed through shell fits). Last 96mm left foot, 100mm right foot.

I was looking for a flex rating of 90-110.

So I've been searching for the right pair of boots for a couple of weeks now. I really want to find the right boot and I understand this process can take time.

 

First I've first reached to the one bootfitting place listed on Epic for the Montreal area, Austrian Ski Shop. Sadly they had nothing of size 24.5 .

 

Afterwards I proceeded with the phone, out of the 20 or so shops I called, a handful had this size in stock (most do not even carry it).

 

Until now, I didn't find a perfect match.

I was especially having trouble with the malleolus area, either medial, lateral or in some cases, both.

Some boots just plain hurt the malleolus area as soon as I put them on, like the Nordica Speed machine.

 

 

The four one below are the best I found so far. They have a good shell fit and felt like a snug but not too tight fit on the length and forward foot width.

But they still had some degree of discomfort at the malleolus (medial or lateral)

They are :

 

- Salomon Falcon CS Pro (2008 or 2009), new old stock, 120 flex (bit stiff for my taste), well reviewed here on Epic.

- Salomon X Max LC 100, a bit snuggier than the Falcon

 

- Atomic Hawk 110. Need try these again, it's been a while. But I remember more lateral malleolus discomfort than the Salomons.

 

- Nordica Transfire R-something. I don't remember malleolus discomfort on these but I did feel discomfort on the tibia when flexed...

 

 

Those that did not fit :

Lange, Atomic Redster (pain), Nordica Speed Machine (more pain), many others I don't recount.

 

From searching the forums I found a few references :

- La Shop in St. Sauveur (closest to me)

- Daniel Lachance in Tremblant

- Raynald Demers at Brunelle Sports, Mont Sainte-Anne

- Frank Dinardo in Ottawa

 

I will try to phone one of them tomorrow.

 

 

My question to you guys :

The boot sales guy said the two Salomons can be heated and worked on so that the malleolus pressure points will go away just by wearing them for a while after being heated. Can it possibibly make that much of a difference? I'm not sure if these guys would actually qualify as "real" bootfitters...

 

 

Thanks in advance.

post #2 of 7

A boot fitter with the appropriate tools can stretch a boot any where you need more room.

 

That said, I probably wouldn't stretch any area till the liner has been heat molded just to see what we have to work on.

 

The Salomon Custom shell boots will mold around your foot and some times will require some work with tools to get a great fit.

 

If you have problem areas in all boots, the first thing you need is a boot fitter not a pair of boots, go with his suggestions.

 

mike

post #3 of 7
Thread Starter 

Yeah I actually got in touch with one of the shops I listed, he didn't really have anything in the correct Mondo size but he said he could check my feet and point me in the right direction. That mostly ended the discussion as he was busy with something.

 

I guess he would probably need to special order the boots, given that they'd still be available in the right size, and I'm not sure how it would work if they don't fit when they arrive.

 

Else I could try to locate a pair at another store and bring them to him, but then I guess bootfitters probably prefer that you buy from them.

 

I'm off to yet another shop tonight that have two 24.5s in stock (Nordica Cruze 90 and Fischer Soma 80, the later is softer than I'd like but there's added value in trying them as they're the first 24.5 Fischers that I've came accross).

 

 

On a side note it's actually the first time someone proposed to actually check my feet. I don't remember anyone else from any other shop, taking the time to look at my feet physiology, taking measurements (other than Mondo lenght) or suggesting specific boot modifications (other than heating the insert).

 

Real bootfitters... might be a rare breed around here.

 

Edit: hope I can avoid the kind of situation freebase described here.

post #4 of 7

So first it means don't go back to any of the shops that didn't look at your feet, you'll be wasting your time again.  I'm surprised with everything you read now that you didn't get the fact that rarely should boots be expected to fit without modifications.  I don't know what the percentage is here but every time someone leaves without an unmodified boot straight out of the box I'm surprised.  Obviously it does happen, but not very often.

 

You should assume that some modification will be necessary and work with the shop that seems most capable of performing those mods and have checked your feet and the shell fit so they know what they will be changing.

 

Lou

post #5 of 7
Thread Starter 

Thanks for chiming in Lou.

 

Well my boot shopping has been an evolving process to say the truth. I first discovered what shell fit, last and Mondo were.

 

I had my Mondo and last width figured out and then I went straight into calling shops to find the correct 24.5 size.

 

While I had read that boots could be modified to some extent, I hadn't delved into the articles that I listed in my original post.

For some reason I was under the impression that liner molding and (even more so) shell mods were really an expert skier thing (which I am not) for those who really want to extract the very maximum performance out of their equipment. With the number of different boot manufacturers and models out there, I was expecting to be able to find a model that would fit my feet without any major problem out of the box.

 

I now realize that, while not everyone has modified boots, you don't need be an expert to benefit from boots modifications!!

 

To tell you the truth I don't think that shell modifications are common around here, I mean outside of liner heat molding I had never heard of stretching/punching etc. before joining Epic, despite discussing with other skiers at work and various ski shop personnel.

 

So I need an actual bootfitter !

I'll try to find someone around here. Otherwise I could consider driving down to VT. I've seen recommendations here on Epic for P.J. Dewey at Race Stock in Waterbury (Stowe Mt. area). My other half and I like to visit Burlington once in a while :-)

post #6 of 7

come out for a trip to alberta and see Lou in calgary, or myself in banff.   I"m sure Lou stocks some 24's and I know I have quite a few options avail too.

 

 

getting lots of snow right now too 

post #7 of 7

I wrote an article on boot sizing and fitting for the September issue of Ski Canada (Buyers Guide) I should get it posted here, but see if you can find it and I think (of course I may not be objective) it explains the process.

 

Either way I'm constantly amazed at lower to intermediate level skiers who think they don't need anything special, don't want race boots, shop Sport Chek, etc. when really they are the people that benefit the most.  One of the major differences between advanced athletes and everyone else is compensation skills, they have them in spades and the rest of us don't to the same degree.  So it is lower level athletes that have the most to gain.  

 

P.J. would be a great choice in your area and Burlington is always a great place to visit.  If you come out here we can probably help but wait until later in the year unless you will ski Fernie or Revelstoke, we are finally getting snow locally but the skiing is still poor.

 

Lou

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