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"Heat modable liner" -- aftermarket vs. come-with-the-boot

post #1 of 13
Thread Starter 
Some of the boot manufacturers have toted their high(er) end boots has "heat modable liner" that conform to the feet, etc. I'm wondering how good these are compare to the after market modable liners like ZipFit and such.

Are these the same kind of materials that are used in Zipfit (or Intuition) liners? If so, wouldn't these newer boots with modable liners put ZipFit and its unneccessary? Since only more advance skiers tend to care about proper fit and they would be the ones buying the higher end boots.

Or, are these made of differnt kind of materials? If so, how good are these then? Performance-wise and comfort-wise?
post #2 of 13
I have skied Zipfit and Intuition and they are both different and different from stock liners, even high end ones.

The Zipfit is very firm and direct and I love the feel of it - they are pretty warm and a definite (read quantum) improvement on stock liners. If treated right and one follows the wearing instructions they 'recharge' themselves on a daily basis. They can be reheated at any time and transferred to any shell and can also be sold to a mate as the reheating process will render them neutral again. I found them very difficult to get into when in the boot so used the racer's drill of strapping the liner onto my foot and then getting into the boot which worked well and had the added side bonus of the boot and liner drying completely overnight.

The Intuition (note I have the Dalbello specific liner) is awesome in a different way. It lacks a little of the firm direct feeling that the Zipfit imparts but never the less transfers foot intent to the ski immediately. It is as solid but does not feel it if you understand what I mean. It is an entire pound lighter however and very warm. My boots are just so much lighter than my old ones it is hard to believe. I have been told that one can have them reheated and shaped up to four times if they do 'pack out'.

Having the Intuition fitted feels like having one's feet vacuum packed and there is a very uncomfortable 30 minutes where one breaks out in a sweat and loses the will to live but after that they are amazingly comfortable from day one. I really like them, not so much that I would not try a Zipfit again but certainly I can see a place in my boot inventory for Intuition.

As a bold statement I can see myself having a set of plug boots with a Zipfit WC or Grand Prix for high end traing and racing and a set of Krypton Cross/ Pro with Intuition (ID) liners for free skiing & instructing.
post #3 of 13
and heat molding the stock liner, just speeds up the natural pack out and stretching that the liner will do anyways. not a bad thing really, but not the magic that the comapnys will have you think.
post #4 of 13
I wonder too if some stock race liners are meant to be replaced, just like the insole is. Lange's race liner this year is horrible. I wouldn't consider it. Salomon's new My Custom Race Fit is the nicest stock liner I have ever seen. leather cuff, thin, dense, waterproof toe. (but very cold)
post #5 of 13
I have been in custom thermo liners for over 10 years. I love them to death adn will not ski a stock liner. When i got my first Kryptons 3 years ago..they came without liners because I knew that I would be putting thermoflex liners in them, thus their stock liners weren't even in the country at that point. Their new ID liner is a beefier version of a traditional Thermoflex or Intuition. Granted a Zipfit liner might be a tad more responsive, but I will take the warmth and the lightness of these over those any day.
post #6 of 13
Dumb question, buy why are the thermo liners warmer? Is it becasue they have thicker foam?
post #7 of 13
intuition foam is a lot warmer softer and lighter then a stock, not usually thicker.
post #8 of 13
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
I have been in custom thermo liners for over 10 years. I love them to death adn will not ski a stock liner. When i got my first Kryptons 3 years ago..they came without liners because I knew that I would be putting thermoflex liners in them, thus their stock liners weren't even in the country at that point. Their new ID liner is a beefier version of a traditional Thermoflex or Intuition. Granted a Zipfit liner might be a tad more responsive, but I will take the warmth and the lightness of these over those any day.
O.K. Phil; Tell about the ID and where you find it. I'm looking around for the thickest Intuition/thermoflex liner I can get. The Dalbello aftermarkets don't look so thick. I'm driving through Sun Valley next weekend and will drop by Full Tilt to look at theirs- made by Intuition but with a different name and perhaps a different cross section. I have what I think is this year's standard Intuition liner in my AT boots (with the powerwrap around the rear cuff) but it's not as thick and cushy as my old Thermoflex with the fat grey cuff- you know the one I mean. I've thought about calling stores and seeing if I can scrounge an old pair. I actually had one hoarded, uncooked, in the basement and in a fit of insanity threw the box away last summer without looking inside...

There's an outfit in Colorado that sells a Thermoflex- like liner, and Dynafit and others make them too:

http://www.moldableliners.com/Pages/liner_info.cfm

http://www.telemark-pyrenees.com/sho...oducts_id=2289

I suppose I could order up one from every maker, put them side by side and return all but the fattest one, but I thought I'd check here first...


I just realized that this must sound odd to some, but with these liners one's foot and the boot become one unit, solid like a potato from one side of the shell to the other. There are no gaps or dead spaces. I get just a tiny toe wiggle. And it's warm and comfortable. They may not be for racing, but for an all day set up it's the ticket.
post #9 of 13
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Philpug View Post
...Their new ID liner is a beefier version of a traditional Thermoflex or Intuition.
That's pretty much the question I was asking, have the "technology" of the after market liners made their way into SOME stock liners? If so, which model(s)?

I'm guessing many who got after-market liners are likely those who had trouble fitting into regular boot shapes. Hence the praises of these customizable liners.

If SOME stock liners are using the same kind of material as the after market liners, then it might work well enough for many who may not have odd or hard to fit feets but just wanted a bit more extra comfort or control?

What do you guys think?
post #10 of 13
As far as I can tell Intuition have patents on the type of foam they use in their liners. The liner with the wrap is considerably stiffer than the non wrap version.

Dalbello have a deal with Intuition and have developed the ID liner. The Pro gets the Gold version, extra dense and stiff, the Cross gets the Silver which is slightly more forgiving and still stiff (I have these). The bonus is meant to be that the liners are already molded to the inside of the boot. Hype or fact I do not know.

They are lighter (about 1/2 pound per boot), stiffer, warmer and easier to get in and out of due to the wrap system.

Speak directly to INtuition about who they would recommend in your area.
post #11 of 13
Mr. Crab - I think the difference you are noting in your Thermoflex-type liners is due to the different foam used from the manufacturers. The Intuition Ultralon foam is much stiffer/denser than the original Raichle EVA foam. The Raichle Thermoflex (and the French versions that followed) is definitely a "cushier" feeling liner. Also note that the Intuition liners can be had in different thicknesses - I know of at least 3 (7mm, 10mm, 12mm), but you have to deal directly with Intuition to get what you want.

To all - just as the Intuition Ultralon foam is patented, so is the OMfit in ZipFit liners (http://www.zipfit.com/omfit.htm). So you're not going to find this exact stuff in OEM liners, but I do know that the Nordica boots have a "cork-n-oil" kind of flow material in their race level liners. You'd have to ask ssh about his thoughts on these liners as compared to ZipFit since he has skied in both.

I think the major difference between stock OEM liners and the after market stuff that's available is the "customizability" of the after market stuff. They just have more areas that will conform to the shape of your foot and the shell. The OEM liners have very limited areas where they readily conform to your leg/foot shape. After market offerings are definitely a great way to go for people with difficult leg/foot shapes.

Another thing to consider is how much of an impact the liner has on the performance of the boot. There's a large difference in how a ZipFit liner will change the characteristics of a boot (forward flex, overall stiffness) as compared to a Thermoflex liner. I've never skied in a custom foamed boot, but I've heard that they are incredibly responsive and certainly change the way a boot shell feels too.
post #12 of 13
How do injectable foam liners compare with Zipfit and Intuition liners?
post #13 of 13
Thanks, Noodler- that clears up a lot. I really prefer the fatter softer linings fit very snugly. I will look at liners with the Thermoflex name attached. Also the Intuition 12 mm. I spoke to Full Tilt and it sounds as if they have a combination of the two, with 2mm layer of softer foam next to skin and the Ultralon for the outer layers. (this design is their patent). I hope to have one in my hands this weekend.

As for Fischermh's question- we need someone who has the newer Surefoot's foamies to chime in. I had foam for a few years a decade ago and it was really pretty firm, uncomfortable and unforgiving- but it sure fits. I see people on the hill with today's foamies- mostly Surefoots, because it says so on the outside of the boot- and they love them. What I like about the Lou's research stuff that ssh posted is that it backs up my experience that having some play around the foot is good. My footbeds (instaprint) aren't as high and aggressive in the arch as Surefoots, say, and even though my liners are totally snug with no gaps whatsoever, they are soft enough to give a little and allow the foot bones and muscles to move. It's an all day comfort setup and plenty precise. The old stiff foams were really about racing and not for freeskiing, in my view.

To address NYC- it's great that many boots now have heat moldable heel pockets etc. I'm not sure how much of the technology is identical because of patents. Aftermarket liners have always been sought by people with hard to fit feet. But once you've had a 100% moldable liner that's a perfect mold of your entire foot, it's hard to go back. Ask Phil.
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EpicSki › The Barking Bear Forums › On the Snow (Skiing Forums) › Ski Gear Discussion › "Heat modable liner" -- aftermarket vs. come-with-the-boot