February 13, 2009
I need new boots and I have a bit of a delima with judging fit.
It seems to me that a warm boot in the store fits "looser" than the same boot on the slope in the morning, particularly after its been siting in the back of the car on the drive to the slopes.
At the time, a new boot in the store is going to "pack out" some and get looser.
How do I judge the tightness of the boot since the boot is going to both be "tighter" due to cold and "looser" due to packing out?
(As a side note, my current boots go from being painfully tight on the first run to sloppy loose by the end of the day.)
dont judge tightness
get some intuition liners and the fit will be the same all the time. they also happen to be the warmest liners on the market as well.
stock liners are crap unless of course they the ID liner(intuition) in dalbellos.
Given the above advice not to judge on "tightness," there are two things I would judge the fit on.
#1. Length (or sole length). Like fitting a shoe. You don't want to be breaking your toenails all the time, but you sure as hell don't want to be swimming in the boot either or skiing in a bucket, as it were.
#2. Feedback from friends, people here, the person fitting or selling you the boot, etc on certain brands tendencies. For example, I think Head boots tend to fit well if you have a wider foot. I think it's Lange that people like with a narrower foot. Things like that, b/c obviously it is important for the shell to generally fit to or confirm with your foot.
Then, as mentioned above, get a good liner for the boot that fits you best.
Consult a good boot fitter. In the absence of that, do a shell fit first -- remove liner from boot, stick your foot in the empty shell with toes just touching the front, and feel behind your heel. A good fitting boot will have 1 to 1.5 fingers worth of space back there. But that's just the start -- there are models with wide and narrow lasts, high/low volume, etc. Without knowing your foot characteristics, it's hard to recommend a good choice, so it can be trial and error. But the shell fit is a good first step to pinning down the right size in a particular model of boot.
Thanks for the input!
I spent over 9 hours with a bootfitter this year. He had me in a pair of Langs and even after much stretching during the course of the season, they were never right. (Very long story made short.)
So after a season of pain, I'm tossing those (except for the custom footbed) and starting fresh. I've tried on several (with a different store/bootfitter) and the Nordia Beast 10 fits "perfect" (i.e. - if I knew they would always fit like they do now, I'd be happy - except for the one bone a need a pocket punched for.). They feel like the proverbial tight hand shake.
My wife has a pair and she says they are much tighter for the first run than they were in the store but then feel like they did in the store for most of the day. By the end of a warm day of skiing, they can feel a little loose.
My last set of boots, I was counting on them packing out more, which never really seemed to happen. (Maybe because my foot was already smashed against the side of the boot and the liner was fully compacted!!)
Didn't you know Lang is a synonym for pain? I can't ski them but others love them. Short story.... my spousal unit had always been fitted into a size 6 boot. She had to keep adding padding throughout the boot's life because they packed out. Finally went to Washington Ski Center and had one of the Brians finally properly fit her in a lang with a shell size of 4. Her ill fitting boot problems are over. It's amazing how a qualified boot fitter can get you in something that's right for your foot.
I think I got my boot problems solved!
I had my "old" boots along with me while trying the new boots and we got to playing around with my footbed (custom) and realizing that there wasn't enough arch. This caused my foot to pronate too much, putting undo pressure on the sides of my feet. So we taped some rubber shims cut from a heel wedge under the arch and bingo, the foot turned and the boots seem to fit now.
I'll be testing them out at Timberline the weekend.
Again, thanks for all the input.