What's needed in a Classic boot?

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JeffOYB
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What's needed in a Classic boot?

Postby JeffOYB » Fri Mar 01, 2013 7:39 am

Seems like they don't need much. Less is more.

I've recently been using pivot-cuff classic boots for my technical touring. They seem fine.

But I used to use low-cut boots and they were fine, too.

A couple weeks ago I started using some simple budget boots -- and they seemed great all over again. Lighter than my cuff boots.

I almost think that just plain FIT is the main thing. Also lightness. The rest is kinda optional. I kinda don't find that boots are the key to control in Classic. Nor are they that relevant to technique -- if they flex in the ball then they're good. So Classic boots are seemingly a simple, easy and thus CHEAP solution.

OK, in terms of fit Classic boots need to give HEEL CONTROL. So there's that. Good low lacing has solved that for me, most times. I've also tape/pad filled out the heel for more snugness.

---HA, it seems like several Combi boots I've tried over the years DON'T do the ball-flex well enough to be useful as Classic boots. So they fail that intro test. I suppose most racing is done with BORING doublepoling so racers might not miss the flex. But I do! Also they are sometimes too TALL and the cuff flex support is in the wrong place, it seems. I suppose it's due to their Skate aspect. But I'd think this could be solved without impeding good, real Classic.

Anyway, I haven't missed my cuffed boots.

Seems like Classic control is given by the bindings -- another easy solution. And by the ski -- a noodle ski could be a problem here but otherwise not that tough a mission.

It's nice to see an aspect of skiing where a $20 solution is as good as a $200!

What does a cuff do, anyway? In skating it helps when you push to the side off a canted ski. You don't do that often in Classic, do you? I guess there are skid-turns. But nimble stepping from side to side on skis during technical areas don't really use a cuff. I haven't ever felt ankle fatigue due to Classic.

For my occasional racing I still use my ultra wimpy old Rossi race Classic boots. They seem fine. Low cut. Ultralight.
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Re: What's needed in a Classic boot?

Postby nxski » Fri Mar 01, 2013 2:53 pm

Touring boots have cuffs for added control on the downhill's and stiffer soles. As you move up to a top level boot, the flex increases which improves your ability to kick, but sideways rigidity must be retained for control. the cuff is not needed if your technique is good so they get rid of it as it hinders the ability of your ankle to move freely. Also, for better transfer of energy to the ski they put in less padding so the boots are not as warm and they build them on a narrower last so the fit is more snug.
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Re: What's needed in a Classic boot?

Postby osloskier » Sat Mar 02, 2013 2:22 am

nxski wrote:Touring boots have cuffs for added control on the downhill's and stiffer soles. As you move up to a top level boot, the flex increases which improves your ability to kick, but sideways rigidity must be retained for control. the cuff is not needed if your technique is good so they get rid of it as it hinders the ability of your ankle to move freely. Also, for better transfer of energy to the ski they put in less padding so the boots are not as warm and they build them on a narrower last so the fit is more snug.


+1 to all you said, except that the last width varies between brands in the top level boots too. I have the top level Rossi classic boots simply because they're very wide, so they fit my feet best out of all the boots in the store (all the boots in three stores, actually, I was hoping to find something less expensive).

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Re: What's needed in a Classic boot?

Postby nxski » Sat Mar 02, 2013 4:03 am

You can get wide ones, yes, typically they are still narrower than a lower end boot of the same brand though. It may not feel this way because the lower end boots have more padding though.
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Re: What's needed in a Classic boot?

Postby squawky » Sun Mar 03, 2013 10:26 am

I like an ankle cuff for that extra support when I am tired and for when the snow is deeper though I do use a lower cut boot on warmer days or on the race circuit.

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Re: What's needed in a Classic boot?

Postby Montana » Sun Mar 03, 2013 10:59 am

squawky wrote:I like an ankle cuff for that extra support when I am tired and for when the snow is deeper though I do use a lower cut boot on warmer days or on the race circuit.


I used to classic ski on low cut boots and they seemed just fine. But in those days I didn't know anything else. There were no boots with cuffs. Then skating came and equipment began to specialize. As a ski instructor I often didn't know which technique I might be teaching in any given lesson. To avoid the need to change boots between lessons I began wearing Combi boots. Over the years too, I skated much much more than I classic skied.

Now I've gone back to classic skiing exclusively due to a knee problem that causes a lot of pain after skating. I skied on low cut classic boots all of this winter but I just don't like the lack of ankle support especially when there is a lot of new snow or when trying to skate corners on firm groomed surfaces. So I'm back to Combi boots for classic skiing. For skating I'd go with a skating boot.
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