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Dodge carbon fiber boot

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 
From Warner Nickerson's blog:

Yesterday, I raced on the Dodge Ski Boot, which is made by Dave Dodge, Peter Dodge’s (Dartmouth ski coach) brother, and Bill Doble. It’s a boot made mostly out of carbon fiber. There is some plastic keeping it together, but basically it’s entirely made of carbon fiber. Carbon isn’t temperature sensitive, it is very torsionally stiff, and is very low volume so booting out (when your boot hits the snow rather than just your edges) is almost impossible. It’s very solid in the turn and creates a great platform at the top of the turn. If you want to know more check out: http://dodgeskiboots.com.

I’ve been testing it here and there and decided to race Nor-Am Finals on it without much comparative timing. First run, the snow was very soft. I started 11th and put down a very solid run and never booted out. I won the first run by half a second over Chris Frank who started 1st. My run was not miraculous, it was good and I was up by 5 tenths with a solid field so I was pretty pumped. Second run, the organizers did a great job salting the course to firm it up. I killed the upper section of the course and then on the harder snow I took a conservative line and slid the top of the turn too much. Tommy Ford ended up taking the victory, while I was 14 hundredths behind him. He put down a great run. I scored the best result of my career an 8.83 point race. This year has been challenging to score since I’ve been on the Europa Cup and World Cup tour mostly so it was nice to get a good one yesterday. Jan Hudec finished third a hundredth behind me so I was sandwiched between two Olympians. However, it was a little painful knowing I had a more gas in me, but it was just nice to be back in a GS race. The last one was Kransjka Gora World Cup at the end of January, which was not the fondest of memories for me.

http://warnernickerson.com/news/
post #2 of 11
thanks newfydog, very interesting
post #3 of 11
 We have a couple of guys skiing that boot in our local series. It's changing all of the time as they refine it. I saw a couple different versions yesterday. It'll be really interesting to see where it goes.
post #4 of 11
OK - so what's going on with the rear of the upper cuff that makes the boot look so freaky?  Is that something structural and necessary?
post #5 of 11
 The boot is clamshelled together. The weird looking lobe is where the two halves go together.
post #6 of 11
that 'bulge' is also there to allow the heel to slide down into the boot. It is a pretty intriguing boot.
post #7 of 11

Has anyone on this forum actually skied in the Dodge Boot?  And if so, what was the experience (from a non-racing) point of view?

post #8 of 11

Has anybody tried this boot this year? Would love to hear more.

 

Johnny

post #9 of 11

I own a pair and have recently gotten the canting and the forward lean dialed in. They are great boots. Below is a review that I posted on the PMTS forum.

 

I bought some Dodge boots early in the season. I require a lot of alignment work and I need a lot of forward lean in my boots (I am 6 3" and all legs). Harald did some extensive work on the boots dialing in my alignment and forward lean. I had the boots with me in Montana for two weeks over the Holidays but it snowed almost every day and I just didn't want to mess with my boot set up in my Raptors which was working well. I was back in Montana for the past 3 days and I skied the dodges 2 of those days. They are by far the most amazing boots that I have ever skied!! Very simply, it feels like I am 50% quicker edge to edge and I am getting the skis to a much higher edge angle much earlier in the arc than I have ever done before. The pop that I am getting from the skis also feels to about 2x what I was ever getting, and I actually need to dial it back some because if I go full bore it is popping me literally way off the ground. Now here is the killer, I skied these off piste for half the day the past two days. I was a different skier. I was tipping to initiate the turns and the skis were snapping through the turns. I was shocked. Turns that I would have had to muscle some or at least wait for, I would tip and my skis would come right around. It was like magic. My brushed carved turns on groomed terrain were completely different because of the level of tipping that was happening naturally. My carved arcs on steep terrain were the tightest I have ever skied.

It may actually all be about how light they are. I feel like I have fast feet for the first time ever. I was skiing chop over bumps and it seemed easy and PMTS technique was effortless. I was shocked at times at how fast the skis came around in a perfect (Haraldesque) brushed carve turn. This is new for me.

The boots are real stiff. With a velcro power strap there is no give either. I suspect that with a booster strap you could dial in some more flex in the upper part of the boot. The only place where I would not want to ski this boot the way it was set up today (with velcro power strap) would be in hard bumps. Skied some harder off piste stuff at one point today and there is no give in these boots. Having said that everywhere I skied them today offpiste they skied great and we had a funky day. Rain at the bottom and wetter snow up top for much of the day. Lots of funky variation in the conditions. I actually love the stiffness. You get instant feedback if you get back at all because it transfers immediate pressure to the tails (again no give).

I am skiing the boot with the Nordica foam liner and these were foamed for my Raptors. I have tried sking in other liners and I just can't do it. Without the foam liner I just can't tip that much because I always feel the hard plastic of the shell and I get a abrasions on my feet rubbing up against the liner. With the foam liners these boots are close to perfect. Using the technique that Harald showed me about getting them on and off they are quite manageable (but not easy either as the foam liner doesn't allow the use of the back canal that is built into the boots).

I have never been able to tip this much and this quickly. I am carving tighter arcs that I ever thought were possible. To some degree I expected some percentage of this on groomed snow (but I really did not expect anything to this level). Where I have been totally shocked is the off piste performance. Becuse I can tip so much further and faster, terrain that seemed challenging now seems easy!! I also love the stiffness because I get instant feedback if I am back or not centered. More importantly, when you get forward and pressure the tips, wow does the ski bend. I have not taken these boots into gates, but I am pumped to do so!

I am not sure I have ever experienced a performance gain so significant in my years of skiing. I remember going to a well fit race boot and the gains were significant, but it was maybe 40-50% of the performance gain I got in one day in the Dodges.

 

post #10 of 11

Hmm def worth checking out.  Any thoughts on if they should be added to the short list of next years possible race boots? (to replace my Lange Comps)

post #11 of 11

I would say that for racing these boots should be at the top of that list. I have never had such an ability to get such high edge angles this early in the arc. For racing that ability is a game changer.

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