My buddy Hugh Finnerty has a blog and recently wrote this article on Raichle boots:
I just received a question regarding the type of boots I use and boot fit… here is how I replied…
“My boots were purchased in 1992 and are called Raichle Comp. This brand and model is so popular by skiers that even though Raichle does not produce them any more, the mold was sold to a couple of companies. The current company owning the mold is called Full Tilt. It is a 3 piece, 3 buckle design boot.
Full Tilt Classic
These boots are comfortable whether I am teaching lessons at Mt. Crescent, teaching lessons in Vail, skiing powder at Beaver Creek, skiing the double black diamonds in the Rockies or racing through the slalom course…
I highly recommend the Full Tilt boot because of the shell design… for the new skiing techniques, the shell gives a perfect ankle flex (forward flex). That’s why I recently spent $700.00 to buy new boot liners (Zip Fit), foot beds, cants and shims…. for the shell that I bought in 1992! If I break the shell, I can buy a new Full Tilt Classic boot model for $450.00 and use all of the guts of my current boot. If I break buckles or components of my boot, I can still buy those parts online.
My street shoe is 8 1/2 to 9 medium and my boot is a 25-25.5 or size 7-7 1/2… So, with my boot, which is the 99mm forefoot, (as opposed to the 102mm forefoot) I am at least one to one and a half full shoe size smaller…. Below is how I recommend finding the right size of boot….
1. When you put your foot in the boot, your toes should touch or almost touch the front. When you bend your knee forward, flexing your ankle, (or wacking the heel piece against the floor at a 30-45 degree angle) your toe then comes off the front and your heel seats itself snuggly in the back of the boot… this is the proper way to determine the length of the boot….
2. As for the width, the boot must fit snuggly around the instep and ankle. You do not want ANY slop at all in these areas. Compare this to the steering wheel in your car. When driving, you want the wheels to respond immediately to your steering. Your feet steer and edge your skis, so you want a tight “connection” of your feet to your boots. I generally recommend the 99mm forefoot, unless you have a particularly wide foot.
3. Once you determine the proper size, a custom foot bed gives you the perfect fit… I go to Harald Harb’s shop in Downieville, CO….exit 234 off of I-70 past Idaho Springs to have them fit my footbeds. Surefoot in Breckenridge is another option. Harb’s footbed is more flexible than Surefoot’s. Since our technique calls for flex, I use Harb’s….
The boot is a critical component to good skiing, so take time and consult a fitting expert before purchasing boots.
Before the season begins, I’ll write a post on retrofitting older boots with a new liner and footbed to prepare you for the upcoming ski season.
This entry was posted in Ski Gear, Uncategorized and tagged Crescent Ski, Mount Crescent, Mt Crescent Iowa, Mt Crescent Ski Area, Mt Crescent Ski Lessons, Ski Boots, Ski Instructor, Ski Lesson, Ski Lessons onJune 9, 2013.