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couple boot questions after tryin em out...

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
well i went to Galyans and it sucked there.. so i went to REI which wasnt too bad. guys at REI were really helpful and seemed to ask alot of questions while i was trying on boots to see how my fit was. i came out of the store with salomon performa7 in my mind as being best but there was a problem...

my first question is regarding the fit of the toe box area. two guys gave me two different answers. my question was whether the toes should have alot of room or not? should it be tight or not?::
guy1 said the following when i asked. he said it doesnt matter much as long as its somewhat snug and that its not too tight to the point of pain or pressure points.. i was able to curl up my toes and was worried about too much volume in the front. he said make sure its comfortable so as not to keep you from wanting to ski. he was really more worried about my heel being in place and not being able to move more so than my toe box as long as my toes werent pinched. he said some people even ski without the front two buckles on if they have to... okay kinda a weird responce..
so because i thought this was weird i asked another guy after the first guy left...
guy2 said that it does matter, he said personally he gets foot cramps when the toe box is too loose because his toes tend to want to curl when he is skiing and that makes his foot cramp up after a day of skiing. i questioned him about the other guys feelings and he said that it is really hard for him to say but it does depend on the person also.

well i tried about 8 pairs of boots over 3-4hrs and found the following. boots with good width up front also had good volume and vice versa, boots that were tight had less volume up front.. i have slightly wider feet so what do i do here?

question2.. what is the difference between technica rival and innotec series? i see nothing about the innotec series on review sites but alot of info about rival series.. would like to know the differences between these two..

i tried on a technica innotec 7 at sportmart; i was there returning a gift.. and it seemed like it was better than the salomon in terms of being a tad tighter but it wasnt to the point of uncomfortableness...

anyone have another store they'd recommend going to for a fit in the twin cities,MN ??
i really notice a difference between rentals(rear entry) and "performance" boots.. why dont they have these as rentals...

thanks for any help in advance.. hope to get some good advice on this..
post #2 of 13
I am not a bootfitter.
It is ok if your toes have room to wiggle(tech term). It is not good if the area across the ball of the foot can lift. You lose control. Same would go for lateral movement. That area should be snug, if it is too tight, then you'll start experiencing discomfort (pain). Boot liners will pack out (compress) especially during the first days of use. What felt snug in the shop, can be sloppy and hardly useful after 4-5 days. Pull the liners out of the boots, and stand in the shell barefoot with your toes barely touching the front of the shell. Maybe 5/8" to 3/4" should be behind your heel. That would be a pretty good length generally. I try to fit to the smaller foot and get the bigger foot fitted to that boot by punching out the shell, otherwise the smaller foot ends up swimming in its' boot. If you haven't skied on them, try ski movements indoors to assess whether they are snug or on the verge of becoming tubs. If you go with those boots, get some miles on them before your ski trip, so a western shop can better adjust and tweak if needed( get those liners packed out).
Innotec? Last year's models? Different lines of boots within a manufacturer will sometimes have different basic lasts (shapes and dimensions). Hope this helps.....
post #3 of 13
Do any of your local ski areas rent the boots you are considering? It would be worth trying different sizes of them in advance.

It's rare that anyone gets an ideal fitting boot right off the shelf- ergo, you and the shop will have to work together to get the appropriate fit. A good boot/ski store will continue to work with you on this at no cost following the initial purchase. They will also employ someone with bootworking experience.

A little extra volume can be taken up with custom footbeds. These devices also serve to enhance the overall fit.

Good luck!
post #4 of 13
Thread Starter 
so i was looking at a 28.5 which was quite comfy, should i go down a size to 27.5 and hope it packs out enough? and then if not i could always get it "streched" a little?? i dont have a problem with length or width really. its more the volume above the toes that i'm concerned about.

i am going to a different store to try some boots again tomorrow and see if i can find a happy medium to the problem. unfortunatly i'm going to have to make due with getting the best possible fit outta the box with minor alterations right now..

will update when i get back..
post #5 of 13
I've been fitting boots for 5 years now. and, I have MY boot fitting! I pick his brains when I can. The doctor has his doctor, I guess.
Here's some stuff to consider:
1)Getting into a boot, never slam the heel down on the floor to get the heel into the heel pocket. It doesn't work. It feels like it but it doesn't. I used to do that until I was taught better. I learned something and I changed (rather than saying, "I've done it this way for years so it must be right.). 3 years of research has proven this a poor way to heel your boot!!!
Instead, get into the boot, buckle the the top two buckles as loose as possible. Leave the toe buckle alone. The instep buckle, hook it on the loosest setting but don't latch it down. Do this with the other boot. Now, stand up and flex very hard and fast,(almost a bounce) five times. This scoots your heels into the heel pocket correctly. On the fifth or sixth bounce stay down and throw down the instep buckles. Now, sit down and buckle up as you see fit. YOU'RE IN!
2)Techinicas have good volumn but tend to taper very quickly in the toe box in some models. Rivals and HVL's only difference is the HVL has a thinner liner. Innotec is a bit older. Technica has this on their web site on older boot links. I e-mailed them. They told me this.
3) The higher the performance of the boot, the stiffer the foam of the liner is going to be. also the volumn of the boot tends to get a bit more narrow. There's a big difference between my wife's Salomon Sport 5's and my Salomon SuperForce Performa 9 Equipes in volumn!
4) Your toes moving is no biggie. You just don't want your foot to move side to side or up and down. the boot should wrap around your foot but not squeeze down on it like many think it should.
5) Heel lift- If there is a little bit, this is no problem. Face it. If you try hard, you can pull your heel up 2 or 3 inches even in a tight boot. If heel lift is bothering you while skiing, lock down the instep buckle another notch.
6) After getting into the boot as described above you should feel your toes touch the front when in a neutral stance. Flex forward into ski position and they should not touch. Stand back up and the should touch. Race fit = toes touch firmly, flex- they still touch but not firm, stand back up, they touch firmly again. BTW- when trying on new boots, don't try one on. get into both of them!
7) Give your boot fitter a chance. Don't get into one boot and say, "oh!@ my toes are hitting." Do the procedure. If they still hit hard, go to bigger boot. Some people's feet elongated when squeezed into a ski boot. If you install an arch support this lessens this effect. Notice ski boots don't have arch supports. Some Technicas have adjustable ones. Neat!
8) If you get a boot too big, there is very little a boot fitter can do for you! A bit small, we can do tons! boots can be stretched out, foam collapsed, deflexed, zeppa ground down.
9) And, for crying out loud, leave the canting feature alone! Get SuperFeet inserts first. Let the boot break in again. This tends to solve 90% of canting problems. If there still is a problem, then do the canting with your boot fitter.
10) Why do they have rear entry instead of performance boots at the rental shop? ... Cheaper!

I tech at Gart (which is Sportmart). Nope... Sportmart is not a sub of Gart. They merged about 2.5 years ago. Some stores kept the name Sportmart due to area familiarity. Actually my paycheck says Gart/Sportmart. they just acquired Oshmans too. I think it's Oshmans.
post #6 of 13
Thread Starter 
thanks for the long responce.

i've done most of what you said, no stomping, flex forward then buckle. i sorta ended up doing this after i had a really tough time getting a good fit from buckling while sitting down at the store. i had to rebuckle after i stood up so why not just do it while standing....

i will try the tecnica rival 7s tomorrow and salomon performa 7s and give them a close comparison. i will probably buy the best one and then wear it around the house to see how it goes. i feel awkward just sitting at the store in skiboots with the salesman waiting there...

thanks again.. will update tomorrow
post #7 of 13
Smokey- the reason for sitting back down is to take the pressure off the boot. Also, while standing some people's feet squish out. Sitting down lets them un-squish.
It takes 3 full days of solid skiing for a boot to 'pack out'. wearing them around the house helps.
Don't feel silly at the store. It's your dime! You're the customer. Take all the time you want. Only about 10% of the people can get into a boot right out of the box and ski them with no problems. the rest of us have to modify them here and there. Everyone's feet are different.
Am I right, guys? do I hear an Amen?!!!
post #8 of 13
100% correct, jyard.
I have people ask me about boots, and the first thing I say is "have you got an hour to spare?, if not, come back when you have the time!"
A lot of people expect to be able to get a boot in about 5 minutes. I've had people say "this is my shoe size, what have you in a blue boot?"

I've never thought about listing the necessary points but you've covered them well.


P.S. That's the long way of saying "Amen, jyard"
post #9 of 13

I would either go to Pierce's in Bloomington or Joe's in St.Paul. I have had good luck with both of them.

If you go to Joe's, Go on a weekend and ask for Tony.

Pierce's outfits most of the racers in the area.

Good Luck
post #10 of 13

It takes 3 full days of solid skiing for a boot to 'pack out'. wearing them around the house helps.

This is partially overgeneralized, and partially incorrect.

There is no 3-day "magic rule" -- my experience is that it takes 15 or so ski days to really "pack out" the boot's foam to a point where its fit is fairly well stabilized

Wearing boots around the house does absolutely nothing but get your feet used to being in a boot. There is NOTHING about walking in a ski boot that makes it valuable for assessment of fit. Boots should fit properly for skiing, and a boot that feels bad when walking can feel GREAT when skiing -- and the reverse is true too.
post #11 of 13
Gonzo- True about walking vs skiing, but the 3 day use to pack out is true. It may be a little more for stiffer liners and less for softer liners, but the general rule applies.

Wear The Hat?- That was a good 'Amen".
post #12 of 13
<BLOCKQUOTE>quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by jyarddog:
Gonzo- True about walking vs skiing, but the 3 day use to pack out is true. It may be a little more for stiffer liners and less for softer liners, but the general rule applies.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Respectfully, I disagree, and I wonder where you got that rule. Certainly it can't be from experience with your own boots. I've never owned a ski boot that packed out to its fairly permanent packing with only 3 ski days. I spent 8 seasons working in a ski shop, fitting hundreds or perhaps thousands of ski boots. I learned the experience of fitters who had more experience than I did at the time.

The only boots I've ever seen pack out in 3 days were the old "flo" boots. I am pretty sure that nobody makes boots with standard equipment "flo" liners anymore. You might be able to get an aftermarket "flo" liner, but I think that's it.
post #13 of 13
Gonzo- This info is from everyone who has trained me. A couple are the best boot fitters in Portland. That's where I get my information. There may be exceptions. Everyone I've sold boots to have confirmed this. Is this the beginning of an arugment because I disagree with Gonzo?! I've seen many of your posts. I have repected your advice and opinions. I respect you as a knowledgable skier et al. But don't slam me because I disagree with you on this point.
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