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Boot fitting snow job

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Need advice. I believe I,ve read here that if one foot is smaller than the other. The bootsshould be sixed to the smaller foot. "Can make a boot bigger, but never smaller".

My feet are a half size off. So there I am trying on a pair of Soloman Pro Gun's yesterday. The guy is telling me that I should be sized to the bigger foot and that he will pack out the other boot to fit. Sounded like the path of least resistance for him. The other thing was , that they felt TOO comfortable in the store.

I'm replacing my old boots cause they are packed out, don't need another pair that will be the same in no time.

So, I need advice. What are the 3-5 absolutes when getting fitted.
post #2 of 21
Boots shells come in 1 size increments accommodating two half sizes per shell size. (My Nordica Beast's shell is the same for both 28.0 and 28.5 sizes.) The worst scenario for you is to get a boot that forces you to go a full shell size larger than your smaller foot. Try to find a boot where your larger foot just fits the shell size to get the best fit.
post #3 of 21
Fit to the smaller foot. 1/2 size isn't that much really. Shell size and rely on that. If they are comfy right off (especially salomon) run. Pay attention while in the shell to length AND width. Don't ever go see that salesman (he's not really a bootfitter) again he is working in his interest not yours.

There that was 5.
post #4 of 21
I should keep this on file. I keep printing it here.

The boot fitter should look at and examine your feet, see how you walk,talk to you about how you ski and your level of skiing. Ask you what your plans are for skiing, do you want to improve. Wear old shoes so he/she can see where your weight hits the ground when your walk.

Notice he/she has not even put you in a boot yet. They need to know about you and how you ski. What things you hope to correct in your skiing. Then recommend a boot for you.

If your serious about skiing and the sales person doesn't ask all these questions. DON'T buy your boots there. I have been buying my boots from the same person since the early 90's and he still goes through the same process.

Boots are the most important part.

Where do you live, may be we can tell you where to go... to find a good fitter.
post #5 of 21
Unless you´re a fakir used to walk on nails and burning coals getting boots which feel TOO COMFORTABLE in the store is one of the most important DON´T DOs.
post #6 of 21
I think I've discovered a truism. A person that asks you what size shoe yo wear and goes and gets the boots out of the storeroom for you may not be a "bootfitter."
post #7 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by jstraw
I think I've discovered a truism. A person that asks you what size shoe yo wear and goes and gets the boots out of the storeroom for you may not be a "bootfitter."
Yes, that would be a salesman of expensive shoes.
post #8 of 21
Like RIO said, all companies use the same size shell for several sizes of foot, they just stuff bigger liners in them for the smaller sizes. You need to determine if you are at the top or bottom of the shell size for your boot size in the model you want to buy. If your feet are a 1/2 size apart you could be right at the break point, in which case you would need to use the bigger shell for your bigger foot and pad the other one to fit your smaller foot. If this is the case it would be better to find another model where both feet would fit in the same size shell so you would not end up with your big foot as the smallest one for the shell and the other foot totally over padded.

It is always good to check whether you are at the top or bottom of the shell size when getting new boots. If you are the smallest size using that shell you will get an inner boot with lots of padding, which will be warmer and pack out quicker. If you are at the biggest size for that shell they will have fewer options for cumtomizing the fit because the liner will be much thinner and your foot will be closer to the shell, and your feet will be colder.
post #9 of 21
Thread Starter 
Max Capacity, I live in the Denver/Boulder area. And spend a fair amount of time in the mountaians/ summit County. Thanks for any leads on a good Boot Fitter, tictoc.
post #10 of 21
If in Denver/Boulder, Larry's Bootfitters on Spruce at 28th (next to BOC).

Larry was the fitter at Ski Deals for years, he's now on his own. This is the first year he will be fitting my boots (the last fitter I used was Bob Gleason). Several people who I respect have used Larry's services, and I would highly recommend him.
post #11 of 21
Tictoc, somewhere in the trying on/sizing process, a serious bootfitter would remove the liner completely from the shell, and have you stand with your foot back in the empty shell. With your toes slipped to the front and just barely touching the front of the boot, one can determine the gap between the back of your foot (heel) and the inside of the shell. You'd expect to have somewhere between 0.500" - 0.750" gap for a proper fit. This is one of the steps a serious bootfitter will take.

This is one absolute step. If you don't go though this process ... leave, as you'd be relying on pure blind luck to get proper fitting boots. Good luck.....
post #12 of 21
I tend to go to the smaller shell. Then grind the other boot with the larger foot. You will not likely be able to exchange liners, ie: put a 28 and a 28.5 together. The shop won't let you, generally speaking.

Most shell sizes are in 1 size increments with the liner providing the half size.

So, for me what this means is that the shop needs to be able to provide fitting services. Ask if they would stretch or grind. Ask how often they do those procedures.

There is no way that I would buy a boot from someone who's boot fitting skill were not well established. I also need to be closed enough to go back easily for the tweek.

I'm no expert, but I have bad feet. I have lots of experience with boot fitting.
post #13 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by paul jones
Most shell sizes are in 1 size increments with the liner providing the half size.
Are you sure?

You're comments about the liners being different is contrary to what I've always been told and read here many times. I think the standard opinion is the only difference between 1/2 sizes is the footbed.
post #14 of 21
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Coach13
Are you sure?

You're comments about the liners being different is contrary to what I've always been told and read here many times. I think the standard opinion is the only difference between 1/2 sizes is the footbed.
It has been my experience that the difference in the whole and 1/2 size is simply the footbed, the liner and shall are the same. For example, the 24.0 has a plush insole to take up the extra space whereas the 24.5 has a thinner insole to allow for that extra room of the 1/2 size.

Max Capacity, I am in total agreement with your post. There is alot more going on than simply your foot size. How you walk, the different shapes your foot/lower extremeties take on in all aspects of motion and the wear on your current footwear are all key factors when weighing your choices. There should be an open dialogue between the fitter and the customer before a boot is even brought out of the back room. If the fitter is not interested in what you have to say about YOUR feet I would certainly find a new fitter. The more questions they ask up front the less work they have to do in the back end of the sale.
post #16 of 21
valleygrlvt: I think it varies from company to company. I have seen the same size liners with different foot beds, and different thickness liners with the same foot bed to accomodate different sizes. Likewise, some models use the same shell size for two 1/2 sizes, and some for three.

As noted in several of the posts, the key is for your boot fitter to start with fitting your feet to the empty shell and then work from there.
post #17 of 21
"You're comments about the liners being different is contrary to what I've always been told and read here many times. I think the standard opinion is the only difference between 1/2 sizes is the footbed."

Coach, you are correct on this point. Are you saying that changing foot beds would allow for adjustment in foot size variations?
__________________
post #18 of 21

No one has mentioned the holy grail of fitting yet.

Not one mention of a 'thodic. For shame.

Although, lots of good advice IMO.

Lean towards the smaller shell.
Only the facory foot bed is the 1/2 size determination.

Now, go a 'bit further with the examination. Why is on foot larger?

If the reason is because of toe length discrepancy then you're in luck. In other words, if you measure the same on each foot from heel to the first met head then you are an easy fix. The larger foot will get a toe box expansion and you'll be in good shape.

If the reason is because one foot pronates more than the other then you'll be in even better shape. In other words, a 'thodic will correct the seemingly longer foot with varus wedging correction. This is the best scenario because you should invest in a 'thodic regardless of the foot length discrepancy.

If you actually have a foot that is truly longer in every part of the foot (I doubt it though) then you have a longer row to hoe. But it's not a lost cause. A boot's overall shell length can be stretched.

One more thing. Bear in mind that boot plastic can have an irritating sense of memory. If you do stretch a shell, it may need to be stretched every season if not a couple of times within the same season. Because of that irritating memory, you should consider buying from a shop that will provide a lifetime of free tweaks. I know of one operation that will do that ...Surefoot. All 20+ shops will provide the same lifetime service.

Before I get flamed, I will head off the flamers as much as is humanly possible and warn you that some folks do not like Surefoot. I can agree to many of their gripes. I can only say that in the case of boot fitting it's the fitter and not the store's marque that makes the most difference.

If you call Vail's shop before the beginning of the season you will be able to get the owner of Surefoot to work with you from beginning to end of the entire process.
post #19 of 21
Anyone know a good trusted boot fitter around Central to Northern NY? Don't really trust my ski shop guy since he messed my footbeds up, then said go ski in them they will work in!! The hell they will and didn't!
post #20 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by paul jones
"You're comments about the liners being different is contrary to what I've always been told and read here many times. I think the standard opinion is the only difference between 1/2 sizes is the footbed."
I am certainly not an expert in the boot fitting, but I have had a lifetime of messing with many different kinds of boots due to my somewhat weird feet. I have definitely had personal experience with sizing differences due to different liners in the same size shell. I will take it that the industry standard now appears to be two boot sizes per shell size, created by two different footbeds, although that means that people with two different length feet would be using the same liner, which means one of them is in a liner that is too long but is getting their "fit" by being crammed against the top of the boot by a bigger footbed. No wonder you need a good fitter to get a correct fit.
post #21 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by tictoc
Max Capacity, I live in the Denver/Boulder area. And spend a fair amount of time in the mountaians/ summit County. Thanks for any leads on a good Boot Fitter, tictoc.
While Larry has been recommended here and a number of folks in town swear by him, I may be the exception that proves the rule. While I was introduced to him by a mutual friend, Larry put me into boots that were not a good shell fit nor were they the right size. At the time a few years ago, before really "getting back into" skiing, I decided to just take a well-respected local fitter's advice.

For me, it was a really bad idea.

In fact, it was that experience that brought me to EpicSki. Two years ago, via recommendations from Bob Barnes and Mike_M (and others) on here, I was fit by Jeff Bergeron in Breckenridge. Last year, I heard many good things about the experience that many have had with Jim Lindsay (Aspen), as well. I would recommend both of these folks (plus Bob Gleason) before I would recommend Larry (sorry to everyone who thinks he's awesome--that's just not been my experience). Now, I know many of the things that he should have done but didn't (like shell fit me). Perhaps he's learned now that he's in his own place. I'd like to hear from others how he's doing it, now...
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