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Buying Boots of The internet?

post #1 of 21
Thread Starter 
Ive been browsing for boots latly and it just seems its cheaper to get them off the internet, Is this a good idea or no?
post #2 of 21
I just did an answer for the beginners FAQ on this! And I just deleted the document where I'd written it, too. bugger.

Would you buy shoes off the internet? Are your feet easy to fit, standard normal feet, or do they have some weird features?

If you have a type of boot that usually fits you, teh net can be a good risk. Or if you have a local bootfitter who will work on them for a fee, that can work too.

If the boot is a totally different shape from your hoof, no amount of work will fix it and they'll suck up money and frustration.

Shops generally have all the latest and bestest, but it's worth a try to ask if they have any bargains, last year's stock, cheapies, and see where that leads.

I probably wouldn't advise going to a shop, trying on boots and then buying on the net, as that's a morally rotten thing to do (unless the shop sucks a lot!) and karma will get you.
post #3 of 21
I wouldn't buy my boots online unless I already knew exactly what I wanted... and like ant suggested, the only way you're gonna know that is if you've put your feet in a lot of boots and worked with a good boot fitter. Of course if you go that route, you're stiffing a very helpful fellow.

I agree with going to a store and asking for last year's models, if they have any, and working with someone there to pick out something that's gonna fit well. In my opinion, having properly fitting boots is very important.
post #4 of 21
1. If you're getting high-end go to a bootfitter FIRST.He'll tell you which boots will suit your feet. (If he can't find a better bootfitter!)

2. Then buy on-line if you want.

3. Return to bootfitter for a full fitting.

4. Then, finally ski to your potential.
post #5 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by OldSchool View Post
1. If you're getting high-end go to a bootfitter FIRST.He'll tell you which boots will suit your feet. (If he can't find a better bootfitter!)

2. Then buy on-line if you want.

3. Return to bootfitter for a full fitting.

4. Then, finally ski to your potential.

I believe if you were to try this,what you saved on line you would pay for in boot fitters time especially if he remembers you
post #6 of 21
I was in your position, I tryed on maybe 12-15 pairs of boots. ran home checked prices, and there was a considerable savings. i bought a high end boot from the store in the end, because i didnt want to shell out $500 for something and regret it later. it is last years colors so i saved 35%. the only differance is the buckle is red on mine and this year its two tone. i would get them from the store and spend a few extra bucks get it done rihgt. good luck and happy skiing
post #7 of 21
I buy skis/bindings etc on the net BUT BOOTS only at the SKI shop with Best bootfitter i can find.
post #8 of 21
Boots are the only thing you CANNOT buy online. If your boots don't fit properly your feet you will ski like sh1t and be in pain which in turn means you wont get as much out of your skiing trip. Sure it costs a bit more to get the latest boots fitted properly by a good bootfitter... but that will be cheaper than the $100 you might save online, but then have to get adjusted at $40 an hour.

My boots took 2 hours to fit properly, and have had at least 2 hours of (free) adjustments made since skiing them. The risk is too great buying boots online. Don't be a tight@rse, go to a shop. You will pay for it later
post #9 of 21
I bought boots for both my wife and I off the internet...I had to get new liners to make the fit right and my wife got new boots-at a ski shop. Im my case I saved some money early but had to pony up for the real deal later.
post #10 of 21
Try to find a bootfitter that doesn't sell boots (if such still exist), ask him for advice and proceed online, then have him fit the boots.
Also, I don't see anything wrong with trying on boots in a huge dept. store (like Intersport or Sportexperts in Austria, don't know if there are many like this in the US) and then buying them online, wouldn't do it in a small shop with helpful and friendly staff though.
On the other hand, seeing the ludicrous mark-ups some stores charge (esp. in some touristy areas in the Alps), I'm not sure who does Karma catch up with first.
post #11 of 21
Bad idea. Period.

According to seasoned boot-fitters, 1 in 10 people can fit an off-the-shelf boot, even if they find the right size and model. Amost everyone needs some type of adjustments.

If you don't have a chance to try first, your odds probably decline to about 1 in 100.

I've tried buying boots online, and you might as well send donations to Exxon.

I'll buy skis online. It's a fairly safe bet.

But boots - no mas!
post #12 of 21
Just contrasting two shops in the Seattle area...G.I.Joe's has decent low to mid range stuff, decent prices, but the kids working there never heard of a bootfitter. Sturtevant's has all ranges of equipment from beginner to top end, with endless bootfitting included, and exchange if the boots aren't right even if they've been modified, included with every purchase, and prices are about 20% below "suggested retail." Internet shopping is even worse than the cheap outfit because you can't try them on. Of course, if you have a lump or bump in your foot, they'll have to sell you a bigger size for comfort, and you lose control. The good shop will punch out the shell to fit your lumpy feet at no additional cost.

Buy boots at a very good shop.


Ken
post #13 of 21
Only buy boots off the internet if you've skied the same boot for years and need to replace it.
i.e. I ski Flexons with a 301mm sole. I've ordered boots and even just shells from Canada after they were discontinued. Then have my local boot fitter heat mold an Intuition liner and shave the right forefoot a smidge. Flexon skiers get that. So if you've got it down that cold, do it. Otherwise, it's just plain dumb.

If I were to go to a different boot and start over, I'd talk to a lot of shop techs, pick a shop with a fit guarantee, find a boot, probably the Krypton (for me), and go through the whole fitting process, returning as many times as necissary to get the fit right. If I was visiting a mountain for a week, I'd do it the first day and check into the shop as needed.
post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Mr. Crab View Post
Only buy boots off the internet if you've skied the same boot for years and need to replace it.
i.e. I ski Flexons with a 301mm sole. I've ordered boots and even just shells from Canada after they were discontinued. Then have my local boot fitter heat mold an Intuition liner and shave the right forefoot a smidge. Flexon skiers get that. So if you've got it down that cold, do it. Otherwise, it's just plain dumb.

If I were to go to a different boot and start over, I'd talk to a lot of shop techs, pick a shop with a fit guarantee, find a boot, probably the Krypton (for me), and go through the whole fitting process, returning as many times as necissary to get the fit right. If I was visiting a mountain for a week, I'd do it the first day and check into the shop as needed.
That is pretty much what I did, even down to the 301 shell . But I jumped right into the Kryptons.
post #15 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by skidbump View Post
I believe if you were to try this,what you saved on line you would pay for in boot fitters time especially if he remembers you

I totally disagree! No shop is going to spend 4-6 hours of bench time and not charge me. This is exactly why we go to folks like Jeff bergeron and Billy Kaplan. Buy the boots and then get them fitted. I just consider the cost for fitting as part of the cost of the boot. The majority of time, a professional fitter will not even sell boots. I got my boots through PJ over at Race Stock Sports. I got great suggestions from Billy and then excellent help over the phone from PJ (you can buy on the internet from them as well). There is nothing wrong with buying this way. If a shop can sell you a boot and not have to spend anytime fitting it, they are not going to complain. Tell them up front what you are doing, have a couple of pairs sent to you with the clear undertanding that they can be returned. Since I can't even get the boots I was looking for around here, there are no other options.
post #16 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by OldSchool View Post
1. If you're getting high-end go to a bootfitter FIRST.He'll tell you which boots will suit your feet. (If he can't find a better bootfitter!)

2. Then buy on-line if you want.

3. Return to bootfitter for a full fitting.

4. Then, finally ski to your potential.
I agree with this. Most people on here fail to realize that not everyone spends $750 on a pair of boots. If you take the time, there WILL be a pair out there that fit you. Once you find that pair, go buy it online and save $$$.
post #17 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Dunn View Post
I agree with this. Most people on here fail to realize that not everyone spends $750 on a pair of boots. If you take the time, there WILL be a pair out there that fit you. Once you find that pair, go buy it online and save $$$.
The only way I'd do this is if the bootfitter tried the exact model to be used on your foot (presuming he was then okay with you buying on-line and coming back for the the fitting).

Without the boot actually there, even the best bootfitter can't be 100% sure of the size, brand and model that's right for your foot.

When it comes to boots I just bite the bullet. Skis come and go, and don't require customization. I frequently buy them online.

Boots can last years. The difference between a great fit, and one that's 10% off, can be Heaven and Hell.

I'm cheap, and look for "deals" on everything. But, I spent $1200 on foamed boots, shell modification, and footbeds. In 38 years of skiing, it's my best investment. It's the only time I've skied without discomfort.
post #18 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Harry Dunn View Post
I agree with this. Most people on here fail to realize that not everyone spends $750 on a pair of boots. If you take the time, there WILL be a pair out there that fit you. Once you find that pair, go buy it online and save $$$.
Exactly! I found a pair of brand new Lange CRL90 ski boots on Ebay during the summer $75 shipped. The seller had a ski boot chart that matched my street shoe size to the correct ski boot.
These ski boots fit me perfectly. Never needed a boot fitter and never used a foot bed, just what ever comes in with the ski boot.
post #19 of 21
Best fitting boots I've ever had were bought sight unseen on the internet.

Probably I got lucky. Also, I knew what I wanted and they were not available in stores.

I think it is sort of like an arranged marriage, some of those work out too.
post #20 of 21
Buying boots from the Internet is not as dumb as some people make it out to be, or at least it's often wiser than buying your stuff from some big faceless shop where the guys working on the floor don't even shell fit and have insane markup price. Around here, I'd say that apart from 1 shop and 1-2 bootfitters (that I know of), you'll get stiffed willfully by the clerk or he'll be a good fellow that just doesn't know jack. I ski with some people who work in ski shops who doesn't know what grinding or punching is or who just size THEIR OWN boots too big... These people have access to the charts, have tech talks organized by manufacturers, but they still end up being so ignorant that they cannot chose boots that are right for their own feet, imagine for yours...

I have worked with the folks at SB (acronym for their name, they have a shop located slopeside at Mont Sainte-Anne and another bigger one near the resort, you cannot miss them if you know the area) and altough the clerk working the floor was a bit hapless with the new stuff he just had received, he was friendly and gave me an incredible deal on last year's boot. Plus, their bootfitter is near the slopes, so when you need an adjustment (something I haven't yet done, since the resort isn't open!) you just hop in the shop and get it over with or so I'm told.
post #21 of 21
Buy online if you know what you're looking for and you know it will fit.
Last year I skied a Lange 100 Comp. I upgraded to a brand new 120 Comp this year for $98 shipped of ebay. But I knew it would fit since its nearly identical to the 100 Comp.
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