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boot shell memory

post #1 of 6
Thread Starter 
Hey guys, I know there is a thread somewhere on the different types of plastic used in boot shells but I dont think it answers my questions as far as I remember. 1. Which of the shell materials is the hardest to stretch or at least to keep stretched without having it return to its original shape? 2. Which is the most affected by U.V. exposure? 3. Which will last the longest without cracking or splitting? Is there an easy way to tell which is which without factory specs? In 30 plus years of skiing I've just experienced my first cracking shell. I admit I get great value out of my boots which is to say I keep them a LONG time and this is the first time I have had this happen.
post #2 of 6
so what boots did you have ...were they A] the dynafit 3F comp or B]the Tecnica Explosion 8

the advances in plastics since those boots and other boots of that era have been massive, the different plastics react differently at temperature and when being stretched BUT as for as life span goes all should well out last the expected life of a ski boot, as for stretching a shell, if the job is done properly[ie the shell heated slowly for a long time rather than fryed and the boot allowed to cool properly when the stretch is done] then there should not be any worries about the stretch returning to the original shape....this of course relys on the user not storing the boots over the summer in a very hot environment which will affect all plastics to some extent.

I would be much more concerned with finding the boot which fits best rather than a shell which may last the longest
post #3 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the info CEM. I've always been picky with the fit of a shell and when I find a great fit I tend to keep the boots for ever. The cracking boots in question are a pair of Tecnica TX, probably early 90's vintage if memory serves. Previous boots include Koflach Super Comp Foams, Salomon SX90 Equipes, Hanson something-or-others and smaller amounts of time on Raichle Flexons, Nordica Grand Prix, Lange XLRs and Dynafit 3Fs. I did not persevere with the last four due to huge fit or skiing feel issues. Using the very un-scientific thumb nail test the Tecnicas do have a noticeably "softer" feel, almost as though the thumb nail could leave an impression in the surface. Some of the cracking has a very interesting "spider web" look to it. I'm just curious as much as anything.
post #4 of 6
So there you have your answer. CEM may have more specific knowledge than me but shells of that color from that generation had a cracking problem. I don't know why, maybe CEM does.

Remember 10 years ago at Snowbird a fellow came in (same boot as you) with his toes sticking out as the entire front of his shell had simply cracked off all the way around.

You got good service. Start again and if you get the same life you'll have done fine.

post #5 of 6
most of the problem as far as i know was the pigmentation and UV degredation of the plastics of the era,

thankfully things are a lot better now
post #6 of 6
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the info guys. I guess I finally have enough incentive to start working on my new boots! I unfortunately get nowhere near the hours on snow that I used to so the tweaking will take a lot longer but it starts this weekend.
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