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Surefoot custom boots - worth the money? - Page 2

post #31 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by muah View Post
In response to Max Capacity... I am in the San Francisco Bay area, so Tahoe is my closest real ski area. Any bootfitter recommendations?
Right on Interstate 80 in Sacramento (at Madison) is Jim Fowler of Sierra Ski and Snowboard. They have a HUGE shop there, Jim is the Ski Manager at the shop. Great guy.

Great Fitter. You can hit him up on the way to Tahoe (it's literally ON the freeway) and there's plenty to do for the family while there--tons of shopping.

Jed
post #32 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthias99 View Post
Looking into it a little more, people do (at least sometimes) make athletic footbeds unweighted or very lightly weighted. It still seems backwards to me, but I guess that if you have serious foot position problems while putting even a moderate amount of weight on your foot, that might be a better approach. I'll have to do some more reading in this area.

I thought that was why most people get footbeds?
post #33 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by MAGGOT View Post
I thought that was why most people get footbeds?
There's a difference between "I can't keep my foot in a completely neutral position all the time while <insert intense athletic activity here>" and "I can't keep my foot in something close to a neutral position with any non-negligible amount of weight on it."

If you're really in that latter camp, Surefoot is definitely not for you. You either need very, very carefully tweaked footbeds or actual medical orthotics.
post #34 of 57
The value you might get out of their process depends on your feet!

If you are like me with narrow feet and high arches, or you have some other foot issue and you've tried on every other boot without success...
... I mean, you have really exhausted other options....
... and still can't get a good fit ...

Then go for the foam, or consider a zip fit liner. It's expensive, so "measure twice, cut once".

Always make sure the tech doing the work is at the top of their game, no matter what system they use. This is the biggest contributing factor to your satisfaction. This is more important than how much you end up spending.

There are always other options, but if you've spent your whole day in pain or have to quit early because of boot problems, then your way is much more expensive than you realize.
post #35 of 57
They are not worth the money.
I only ski half days for most of the season; after 27 of those the surefoot liners in my boots are completely packed out.
I can't get my boots buckled tightly enough to get a good fit.
At $584 for the liners and footbeds, it was an absolute waste of money.
post #36 of 57

Don't Bother

The short answer is NO.

I had a pair of custom boots made at one of the stores with the hope that I could finally get something that would fit my oddly shaped feet. Their boots did not fit any better than much cheaper versions that I could buy at a store. The reason has to do with the shell.

Many shells don't fit my foot shape. They have a limited selection of boot shells, including Technica, Lange, Salomon, etc. However, they don't carry the shell that fits my foot best.

There is something to be said about a custom molded foam liner, as it will alleviate pressure points, but in short, if the shell doesn't fit, then you are wasting time. There are many others stores out there that can use the same foaming process.

If you want a really well fitting boot, find the shell that best fits your foot shape and go with that. Most factory boot liners will pack out, and break in, and fit similar to the foam liner after a few days. If you want the comfort of not having to wait for the break in period, then have a liner molded to your foot using the shell that works best.

I do like their custom footbeds as they helped with pronation, and made skiing easier on my knees.

However, the surefoot experience resulted in an ill fitting boot that I spent countless hours having adjusted (when I could have been skiing) only to result in a fit that I could have gotten from a much cheaper boot. If you live near a surefoot store, then you may be okay, as you can have adjustments done, but if not, go to a nearby store. There may be stores in your area that can do the foam liner if you ask. There are stores in my town that can do the same things to boots that surefoot can, and I can have them done at home instead of taking time up at the resort or making a 3 hour trip to the resort. Some of the guys at the store also seem to have an attitude when you return a number of times. I felt bad about coming in because of that attitude and don't want to deal with them anymore.

Try the footbeds if you have some foot issues. Buy your boots and shells elsewhere.
post #37 of 57
I've had really good luck with Surefoot.  My experience with them started at Squaw in Spring 2007.  I was attending a art and music festival at Squaw where they held a contest with free giveaways.  You had to send a text message to vote for your favorite artist.  I must have sent 1000 texts to jam the voting box and came away with first prize, a pair of Solomon X Wing Fury skis, size about 160.  A guy next to me won second prize, a gift certificate to Surefoot at Squaw for free boots.  I had looked into Surefoot before and knew the price tag was in the $1000 plus territory so I proposed a trade saying the skis were to small for me (they were).  He agreed and I went to Surefoot at Squaw first thing the next morning.

Getting the boots fitted was quite a process.  We started with an analysis of my skiing, days on the mountain, preferred terrain, and likely conditions.  We settled on a Lange WC shell and started the custom footbed process.  As others have stated, the footbed is made with a computer CNC driven measurement that send tiny spikes into the sole of your foot.  I would describe the process as semi-weighted as I stood in a corral like mechanism supporting some of my weight on the bars just above waist height.  

Once the footbeds were completed they were inserted into the bootliners which i put on for the foamig process.  This hurt like hell.  Two chemicals were mixed to effectively take up all the space between the boot and my foot.  The pressure around my foot caused excruciating pain for about 15 minutes before I was finally able to remove the damn things.

I skied perhaps 5 days on them that season and had a few minor issues.  I went back to the same Surefoot and had some space added near the 6th toe area.  After another full two season in the boots, I am totally satisfied.  At the end of last season I had another tweak made where they heated up the boot and stretched it out to make more room on my inner right ankle.  During the foaming process, that area was already tight to my foot so no foam really made it in to cushion my bone.  

I'm sure one could get equally good service by finding a reputable bootfitter in your area and the pricetag should surely give you pause.   If you want fully customized boots and don't have another option, Surefoot can definitely deliver a great fit that will meet your needs.
post #38 of 57
Don't waste your money with Surefoot. Bringing the boot back time after time will only result in them making any problems worse.  Their 'guarantee' is worthless.
Go with what WxTina said, but, I don't think the Surefoot footbeds are worth the $200 they charge. I've had to add Dr Scholls insole material to mine. Without it, the Surefoot footbeds feel like granite.
post #39 of 57
The short answer is no.  But if you got the money to blow on skiing, you got some cash for really expensive boots.  I had a couple of problems with my boots and brought them into the Santa Monica store and the sales men said he would fix them and return them via UPS for free.  You will not get that service even from a world class boot store at a ski town.  I'll suggest first trying a world class boot store at a ski town and hopefully they can help you, if not spend the $$$ for a custom boot.   My boots are 6 years old and the inner boot is in great shape.
post #40 of 57
Actually you don't have to blow a lot of money on boots.  First find a good boot fitter in your area.  Then talk to him/her about the price range you are looking at.  A good boot fitter will work with you to find the right boot and fit it for you in the price range you are looking at.  Also, they will work with you on orthotics.  Some people need hard orthotics, others need soft ones, some people need to have them custom made, others can use orthotics off the rack. 

Remember everyone's foot is different.  What works for one person may not work for another.  So, pick the best boot fitter you can find and one that you trust.  The best ones will take back a boot and change it out if it isn't working for you, ask about their policies.

You marry boots, you date skis.  The boot fitter is your matchmaker.  Boot fitting is a blend of science and art.  (An old experienced boot fitter using modern fitting equipment is great.)  Pick a good one and treat him well.  (A six pack now and then goes a heck of a long way.)

When I get new boots, something I dread, I go to the fitter and tell him to fit me.  I don't talk the brand or anything like that.  Just get me into a boot that fits properly and comfortably.  As an instructor I value comfort and fit so that I can wear boots 8 hours without problems.
post #41 of 57
I have the Surefoot footbeds. They are firm but they do not feel uncomfortably stiff because they fit my foot. I also use some SuperFeet off the shelf insoles in another pair of ski boots and they work too. Snug fitting comfort is what you need for comfortable performing boots. I agree that you can get a good fit without a foam liner. I'm a strong believer that comfort is the most important attribute of a good fitting boot so if the boot fits - wear it.
post #42 of 57

I just bought a pair ($1200 all in) and am not very happy.  I was told they need three days to break in.  I made it 2.  They were excruciating.  I took them in to be adjusted and they were a bit better but still worse than my old boots.  The manager re-molded one of the boots.  When I was in getting them adjusted I noticed that more than half the people in the shop were getting their boots adjusted.  That's the problem.  The guarantee says that they well adjust your fit as much as you need.  But you have to be willing to sit in the surefoot shop instead of being on the slopes.

 

Definitely not worth the price.  find a qualified boot fitter.

post #43 of 57

I have and don't recommend it.  You are better off finding a great boot fitter at a local ski shop.  I bought a pair (about $1200) and was told they take 3 days to break in.  I lasted 2.  They were excruciating.  I did one adjustment and finally had to have one of the boots remade.  When you are in the store take note of how many people are there shopping and how many are getting adjustments.  It's about 50/50.  That's the problem.  You spend your ski vacation sitting in a Surefoot getting adjustments.  I lost 3 days in Whistler to these boots and they are not any better than my old boots.

post #44 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by T-Square View Post

...

You marry boots, you date skis.  The boot fitter is your matchmaker.  Boot fitting is a blend of science and art.  (An old experienced boot fitter using modern fitting equipment is great.)  Pick a good one and treat him well.  (A six pack now and then goes a heck of a long way.)

When I get new boots, something I dread, I go to the fitter and tell him to fit me.  I don't talk the brand or anything like that.  Just get me into a boot that fits properly and comfortably.  As an instructor I value comfort and fit so that I can wear boots 8 hours without problems.

 

 

Great advice! Visiting my boot fitter is the 2nd or 3rd thing I do when I get to Whistler (after dropping my gear at the condo/hotel).

 

I drop off a 12-pack, shoot the breeze if he's not busy then head for Splitz Grill. I might want a small punch, he'll heat them up and done in 15 mins. If I need any gear, I'll use his store (Can-Ski) and we try to get out for a few turns while I'm there. I don't always need adjustments but I always drop off a 12-pack for the great work he's done for me the last three seasons!

post #45 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Matthias99 View Post

If you want or need unweighted footbeds, don't go to Surefoot. They aren't set up for that.

This is completely false....  Ask any surefoot employee how they make an unweighted orthotic and they all should be able to show you.  Its just not necessary with 95% of people.  If you are incredibly overweight or have some severe (and I mean you should not be skiing anyway severe) issues that prevent the boot fitter from aligning you ankle in the neutral position, then an unweighted orthotic might be necessary.  

post #46 of 57

Well, I am a doctor and I have skied for over 50 years and the last three pairs of ski boots were from Surefoot, Whistler.  The first two were no problem.  The last pair was very bad.   They were painful.  Two of my toes turned black, one of my toe nails subsequently fell off as it had undergone necrosis.   The people insisted that the size and fit was correct and they tried to remodel it a few times with no success.  The first two pairs are a size larger than this last pair but they still say this one is the right size!   Does this mean that they measured the last two pairs incorrectly?  Or have they measured incorrectly the pair where my toes fell off?  

 

I shall be revisiting the Whistler store when I go back in a few weeks and will let you know what happens.   Watch this space.

 

If any one wants pictures of my feet I would be pleased to send - not a pretty sight!!!

post #47 of 57

A bootworks place at Squaw has ex and currrent

 

olympic racers  using their footbeds, and I've put the store onto our winter oly people. . Tell him the aussie guy sent you and you won't pay the sort of stupid prices I've seen in this thread.

1000

 

poulsen 035.JPG

post #48 of 57
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ski Animal View Post

Well, I am a doctor and I have skied for over 50 years and the last three pairs of ski boots were from Surefoot, Whistler.  The first two were no problem.  The last pair was very bad.   They were painful.  Two of my toes turned black, one of my toe nails subsequently fell off as it had undergone necrosis.   The people insisted that the size and fit was correct and they tried to remodel it a few times with no success.  The first two pairs are a size larger than this last pair but they still say this one is the right size!   Does this mean that they measured the last two pairs incorrectly?  Or have they measured incorrectly the pair where my toes fell off?  

 

I shall be revisiting the Whistler store when I go back in a few weeks and will let you know what happens.   Watch this space.

 

If any one wants pictures of my feet I would be pleased to send - not a pretty sight!!!


Sounds to me like they sold you the wrong sized boots and are trying to keep from having to give you a new pair.  Good luck.

post #49 of 57

Agreed get a good local boot fitter. No doubt that Surefoot makes nice boots, but they are so ridiculously over priced. My boots have cant grinds, lifts, internal shell grinding, liner work, etc. Got em for 600 brand new. (Nordica Doberman WC)

post #50 of 57

I have always had a hard time getting boots that work with my feet.  I have a very high instep, so every boot essentially presses down so hard on the top of my foot, that it cuts off circulation and feeling in my toes.  This last ski trip, I went into the Deer Valley Surefoot and had custom footbeds made.  It helped, but they told me that my boots are a size to large for my feet.  That's why I have to clamp down so hard to keep my heel from swimming around in my boot.  They had me convinced to buy new boots, but my husband said no to $1,000 boots.

 

Now I've read all these posts and I'm not sure what the best solution is for me.  We live in Alabama and only ski once every year or two.  Needless to say, there aren't a lot of bootfitters near us and I'm not sure I'd trust them if there were.  Any suggestions?

post #51 of 57

Turquoise, this is a very old thread.  You can get better information if you start a new thread devoted to your specific situation.

 

Go to the top of the gear forum, click on "Start a new thread," and create a title that is a question asking exactly what you want answered.

Then offer the details of your situation in your first post.

I bet you'll get lots of suggestions that way.

post #52 of 57

Thanks.

post #53 of 57

I just completed my third season in Surefoot boots, and COULDN'T BE HAPPIER !!! I usually get 30+ skiing days in a year. With "usually" three trips out west and a few in Vermont. I've been in quite a few Surefoot locations with NEVER a problem;Squaw,Vail,Beaver Creek,Canyons,etc. I had one gentlemen in Park City who was "so-so' but still took care of me promptly . All for MINOR tweeks with the boots( I would rather do 2/3 visits with minor adjustments then 1 major change).The boots are DIALED IN BIG TIME now. My wife had her boots done two years ago and I think she's had 1 visit once again for a minor adjustments. There are now 6 people in my "extended" family who are satisfied Surefoot costumers !!!

post #54 of 57
What is a comfortable day skiing worth to you? Surefoot is the most scientific process on the market! The foot beds, while you are pronated during the initial measurement, the tech puts you into your most athletic position durring the scan, by manipulating your ankle to open your arch. It is way more exacting than any cork/plastic molded footbed and 100% better than a super feet ( which is a more athletic dr schol's). It's expensive, but all good tech is.
post #55 of 57

I have lots of experience here.  The answer is yes and no.  Lot of help huh?

 

1.  Dramatic difference in fitter to fitter across the stores (not unlike boot fitter to boot fitter in any store).  Check the listings for top boot fitters here and in Ski Mags.  It does matter.

 

2.  I had a bad fitting experience at Surefoot in NYC, and asked for the manager who did an awesome job fitting me.  They tried very hard to sell a custom boot but i was fit in an off the shelf boot incredibly well.   On the other hand they made a demo footbed/orthotic and it wasn't as good as my old cobbled together one from a podiatrist in Chicago, so that was a no go.

 

3.  Now cut to the Deer Valley location a few years later.   I was having trouble with my boots and the Surefoot guarantee is awesome.  Went into the store.   They checked the fit.   Saw that my footbeds were broken down and recommended a custom footbed (big surprise!).  They made the footbed and told me to ski on it for a couple days and come back if that didn't solve the problem and they didn't charge me at that time.   Footbed was the answer.  Great fit this time (not the first time) and I paid them before I left town.   Very cool.   Same trip, my wife had a bad fitting experience in the same store.  So back to the earlier comment.  Boot fitter to boot fitter even in the same store makes a big difference.

 

4.  Years later now the Surefoot custom boot seems much less important.  Tons of great boots that can customized with thermal warmers right in any good boot fitter's store.  My most recent boots from Viking in Chicago where custom warmed and fitted, and are fab and they had a wide selection of boots to work with, so the ultimate custom Surefoot boot might be great for some but is less important today than 5 years ago.  

 

Hope this helps.

post #56 of 57

Don't get me wrong I am a fan.  Just a heads up that fitting varies by fitter.   They sell many different boot lines in addition to their own that they can fit well.   To my the advantage of buying from Surefoot is you can get refit wherever you are.   And today I am still very happy with my off the rack boots from them, custom fit, with their footbed and still happy after 40 days of skiing per year.

post #57 of 57
They made mine fit worse! DaleBoot all the way for me...and at 1/2 the price!!!
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