or Connect
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ask the Boot Guys › Name of the game for stiff, non-race lasted boots = moldable shells?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Name of the game for stiff, non-race lasted boots = moldable shells?

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 

I have been trying with some difficulty to find a stiff boot with in a "comfortable" width (i.e., 104mm at 29.5), and that is accomodating for my large-ish calves.  I have been to five shops, two that were a 1 hour + drive from me, been shell fit four times, and tried on about half dozen boots.  

 

I've gotten close to a great fit with a stock shell, but I haven't found a shop that will say, no problem, we can fix that with a punch here or a grind there.  Instead, what I've gotten is a push to the moldable shells by Fischer or Salomon.  I just don't have confidence in the final result to purchase either one, particularly because they always seem to be the most expensive boots in the shop.  (And also I was one of the folks who bought a pair of the "foam injection" boots in the 80's that were a disaster.)

 

Now most of the shop folks start with a song and dance about how wide my foot is, or how fat my calf is. I don't buy it.  I never had difficulty finding a stock Tecnica shell that fit me.  The only guy who seemed unfazed with my foot was from a shop that I found from the ABB website.  He said pretty frankly that as it was mid-season, they didn't have many advanced boots left in my size, and put me in a Hell-and-Back H3, and it was a pretty close fit once again but the stiffness was a little soft, so, again, he pointed me to the Fischer and Salomon.  

 

I haven't put on anything in a hard flex from Tecnica, Head, Lang or even Alpina (which I used to find were the most comfortable boots for me years ago). Should I just bit the bullet and go with the shell molding, or keep looking?  And in terms of different moldable shells, each of which I'm told will fit perfectly after the molding process, is there a big difference between the result you get with a "bake" Salomon shell, and the Fischer "pressure vac" shells. 

 

Specifically, despite the lack of stock shells in my size, in the custom shell I have four options near me I can get in 29.5:  the X-Max 120, X-Pro 130, RC4 130 Vacuum, and the Hybrid 12+. 

 

When I look at my choices from a business perspective, I feel a little suspect that all these choices in "moldable" shells, and the dearth in out-of-the-box models, is part of a scheme to lock in business for local shops and put the online shops dealing in last year's models at a disadvantage.  For example, none of these shops with the fancy vacuum machines are even stocking the Fischer Progressor in any size, which is a boot that looks promising as to my fit (based on the ABB review).  

 

OK, done rambling. 

 

If your a non-bootfitter and have some thoughts on this topic feel free to PM me.

 

 

post #2 of 6

moldable shells are just another tool in the tool box for a boot fitter... BTW all shells are moldable, just the marketing departments of some companies are more active than others

 

without seeing your feet it is near impossible to say what will work best, but the fitter is right it is mid season (actually the beginning of the end for us over this side of the pond) in terms of selling so stock does start to diminish 

 

why not have him mold up a pair of the salomon and see how it feels, or wait till the new stock comes in at the start of next season

 

question , is your foot 104mm wide in a size 29.5 or are you looking for a boot lasted 104mm (which in a 29.5 would be about 110-112mm) shells can be made wider, and you don't find many performance models in the wider fits

post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Quote:

question , is your foot 104mm wide in a size 29.5 or are you looking for a boot lasted 104mm (which in a 29.5 would be about 110-112mm) shells can be made wider, and you don't find many performance models in the wider fits

 

104 @ 29.5

post #4 of 6
Thread Starter 

After reading some other posts about the Fisher vacuum, and seeing a ski pal complain about her molded X-Pros, I decided to go with my gut and ordered a pair of Alpina Xthor 120s. 

 

As part of Alpina's marketing deal, you put in the location of your nearest Alpina distributor (in my case, the guys who wanted to sell me the Fisher vacuum) and then when the boots show up, if you don't like the fit, you can return the boot to that dealer, rather than have to ship it all the way back to the other side of the country. 

 

So they show up and the right feels absolutely perfect.  The left has a little ridge on the seam of the liner where it looks like the stitching was a little off (three stitches on the right going over the edge, only two on the left). Even the top buckle on the cuff is easy to hook up without the power strap.  Skied with them for two hours yesterday and that tiny bump packed down and I couldn't even feel it.

 

My only complaint is that they are a little on the soft side.  The flex can be set from 110 to 120.  At 110, it's pretty soft.  At 120 you get decent pressure.  I don't feel it collapsing - it just feels like there is a more consistent stiffness rather than an increase in the stiffness as you flex forward. 

post #5 of 6

104mm, in 29, is a VERY narrow foot. 

 

I'm confused...

post #6 of 6
Quote:
Originally Posted by mntlion View Post
 

104mm, in 29, is a VERY narrow foot. 

 

I'm confused...

yup i was thinking that 96-98mm in shell terms in a 26.5  time to find a boot fitter rather than a seller or the internet

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Ask the Boot Guys
EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ask the Boot Guys › Name of the game for stiff, non-race lasted boots = moldable shells?