Gaerne Balance Oiled and Balance Pro Tech Boots Review

Discussion in 'Vendors' started by Brtp4, Mar 19, 2011.

  1. Missouri Marine

    Missouri Marine Bob

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    Thanks.
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  2. chiba

    chiba elitist BMW snob

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    No kidding? Please PM me w/details.

    --chiba
    #22
  3. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    sent you a reply.

    BP
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  4. MeanMoe

    MeanMoe one really mean cat

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    I have heard that some of the Gaerne boots fit a wider calf but I can't find any sizing info to that effect. I wear a Women's 12 but end up in Men's boots because so few mfgs make an EU44 or EU45 in the narrower foot bed. Add to that the large calf muscles and I end up in shorty boots. What I'm looking for would be height of the boot and diameter at that height (measured from inside boot if possible) do you have any info you can point me to ?
    #24
  5. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    Not so much they fit a wider calf - they do - but the fit in the foot chamber is wide also. They may work for you but you will almost certainly need aftermarket insoles.

    Best way to determine if they will work is to measure your calf circumference while standing on the floor barefoot at 8", 10", and 12". Also, if you use knee armor in side the boot. Can you PM me with this info?

    BP
    #25
  6. Blaise W

    Blaise W Been here awhile

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    I've been looking at these for a while, and ordered a pair of Pro Techs this evening. My Gaerne GX-1s are pretty comfortable, but plans for the entire TAT and Great Divide this summer mean lots of hours in the saddle, and on my feet. Hope that my Red Wing boot oil will help with water, and maybe some wax on the welts. My riding buddy ordered a pair as well and we'll be giving them a good testing.
    #26
  7. grogger123

    grogger123 fatbastard

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    I am still using my Alpinestar Roger De Coster boots. As you had the Hi Points which are very similar, how does the quality of materials and construction compared to these old Alpinestars? I bought mine new in 1984 and they are still going strong. When I bought them I used them as road boots for a long time, so they havent really had a hard time offroad, as I have only been dual sporting for about the last 2 years or so. I really like my Alpinestars and whilst expensive to buy in 1984 have proved to be an excellent value boot, given the life of them. I am contemplating retiring them, but want to buy something of similar quality and life. Quality of materials and construction with a long service life are important to me.

    Would the Gaerne Balances be that boot? Or would you recommend something else? I have tried Sidis and my foot is too wide to comfortably fit them.
    #27
  8. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    The Pro Techs are almost that same boot, except that they are lower, and do not have some of the reinforcements in between the layers of leather. But it is the closest thing going IMO. Most of the newer boots use thinner leather, split grain, and use plastic to compensate.

    BTW, got a bad vintage jones too.....I have a search saved permanently on EBay trying to find a pair of the old Tech 4s.

    BP
    #28
  9. grogger123

    grogger123 fatbastard

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    Thanks for that BP. The Protechs certainly look good and seem excellent value. Do you guys ship to Australia? By the way, in Australia, the Bombers is the nickname of the Essendon Football club. They are an Aussie Rules football team playing in the Australian Football League. Their club colours are black and red. When you refer to the Bombers, that is what immediately comes to my mind.
    #29
  10. ColoSean

    ColoSean Yard-sale Expert

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    BP
    So the big difference between the Pro-Tech and the Adventure, is that the Pro-tech is better built and has a little more support, but the Adventure is waterproof. Is that the basic difference?

    Since you carry both of them, how would you compare the Adventure and Pro Tech, to the A* scouts?

    Thanks for the input!
    #30
  11. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    That is the broad-stroke version of their differences, but it's a little more complex than that.

    The Balance is an old school approach to boots. Both the Oileds and ProTechs use leather that is so expensive, it is almost never used any longer. If you cruise EBay at all, you will occasionally see boots from the 70s for sale, and some are even in good condition. The reason is that the leather used back then was true full grain, without the top surface shaved and stamped like they do now (the tanning was also different, but that process had to be cleaned up). The sole is welt construction, meaning it is stitched. 5 years down the road, if the sole is worn out, it can be replaced. It also is more rigid.

    The Adventures use leather that is thinner (2.5mm instead of 3.5mm) and softer. The whole boot is lighter, softer, more comfortable, more easy to walk in. It is a modern design. Quality is excellent, they are great boots, durability seems solid (they are new, so this has to bear itself out) but....they are a modern design. I am a bit of an old school guy for products, especially boots*. Old school footwear, especially boots from the Veneto region, had a well earned rep for lasting (ha ha) a long, long time. They could be repaired, resoled, and handed down to the next user. The Italians from that area have a ridiculous obsession with quality, and complete disdain for modern approaches to building footwear. I lived there, and knew several of the product guys. For them, it has to be simple, use the absolute best materials, and they spend absurd amounts of time refining the details until the product is late, over budget, unprofitable, hard to manufacture......and excellent. The Italian companies are still competitive with Asian-made footwear, but at the expense of their obsession with quality. The Balance is one of those old-school products. The G-ADV is a modern one.

    People who buy the Balance have almost universal praise for them. They are not a good ADV product, they are one of the best ones sold, period. I am not being hyperbolic or disingenuous, I really feel that is true.

    BP

    *looking for a pair of vintage red-lace Dunhams in size 12.
    #31
  12. MrSandman818

    MrSandman818 INaVANdownBYtheRIVER

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    I have the brown oiled boots and I love them.

    I would use them to commute in, wear them around all day (they almost look like romeos at first glance when your jeans are over them), Then I would go ride some logging roads afterwards. There comfortable to ride in along with walking in. There definitly waterproof and they help keep your feet warm when you go for a ride in the snow or freezing rain.

    Your not going to get the same protection as a motocross boot but I dont plan on trying to clear some triples on my 950 adventure.

    I like actually haveing tread on the bottom of the boot. I hate getting stuck and needing to muscle the bike around in mud and not haveing any grip. So thats a definit plus.

    Id recommend them to any adventure rider anyday.
    #32
  13. CATGS

    CATGS Bourbon consumer

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    Just ordered up a pair of size 13's Balance Oiled.
    #33
  14. kbroderick

    kbroderick Long timer

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    How would you compare the Alpinestars Durban and Scout with the Gaerne Oiled boots? Those are the three boots most appealing to me, although the cost of the Durbans is a bit tough to swallow. My bike is my primary summer transport—I try to leave the truck parked from May through September—as well as a way to explore places that may or may not be good places for 500 pounds of BMW, and the occasional multi-day tour. I've been riding in a pair of Oxtar Matrix boots on pavement, on lovely class 4 roads that only qualify as "road" by legal technicality, and a lot in between. I'd like something that provides more protection from injury while still being useable to walk around the campground, and Sidi boots don't seem to fit my feet (I've got two pair of size-42 Oxtars that fit great, a pair of size-42 Joe Rockets that fit OK, and a pair of size-42 Sidis that work pretty well for 20-minute track sessions but need to quickly come off my feet after that).

    thanks.
    #34
  15. Petrolburner

    Petrolburner Noise Maker

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    I second that question, but mostly just the Scout vs Oiled. I'm guessing it's the old vs new tech response? More protection out of the Scout. More critical to get the Scout to break in on the proper lines to avoid permanent crease in the wrong spots? (had a pair of Redwing steel toes for chainsawing that did that, lost them somewhere years ago though :cry)
    #35
  16. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    That is mostly the answer. Not exactly old vs new in terms of tech, more of product management philosophy. I am sure the scout was built from a target price backward, "we need this boot', it has to me this price, where do we make it and what is the spec". The Balance, being a trials boot, has little comp, so no real need to have a target price. It is just built with the best spec possible. I know that leather, it is super expensive.

    AFA construction, Scout has a molded sole (better for walking, but not resole-able and not as supportive, cheaper leather, less precise fit, and more seams. OTOH it has a stiffer ankle area, because it has a molded in brace. Knowing you and your setup, and how much use you get (Trevor rides a LOT folks) I would lean to the Gaerne. They can be repaired, resoled, and the leather is more durable. If you need more support, I will point you to a lace-up ankle brace.

    Don't get me wrong, I like the Scout. But the Balance is a great boot. My fear is that sooner or later they will re-spec it, which will ruin it.

    BP
    #36
  17. Petrolburner

    Petrolburner Noise Maker

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    Yeah I'm looking to have them last 10 years or more, so was actually looking for a boot that could have a new sole put on if need be. Speaking of, do you know of a craftsman in the area that can do it? I have a pair of Merrell water proof slip on boots that are my daily wear boots in winter, love those things! Went to Bend alterations per your recommendation and they fixed the zipper on my tent for free! Also said that someday the sliders would fail and they would be $10 a piece to replace. If they had had the sliders in stock to do it I would have just gotten it over with.

    Speaking of lots of miles, I've put 3000 on the KLX since I moved here in late November. Not bad considering it was (and sometimes still is...) winter! Got snowed on yesterday riding in Bend!
    #37
  18. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    I think they are the type of boots you may get 10 years out of. AFA resoling, I don't know if it can be done locally. I am looking myself, I have a pair I need some work done on. But there are plenty of places that do resoling on "Goodyear Welted Boots", just not in our little town.

    BP
    #38
  19. prsdrat

    prsdrat Been here awhile

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    Hello, I just came across this thread and am in need of a pair of soles for
    the Gaerne Pro Tech. Can you source them?

    Thanks.
    #39
  20. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    Yes, but they are pricey....about $45.

    These boots are "Goodyear welt" sole construction, which means the sole is basically glued on and sanded around the perimeter to size. Because of this type of construction, you can apply almost any other motorcycle boot sole that used Goodyear welt construction. The Balance boots have a kinda premium natural rubber sole, hence the cost. If that is not necessary, you can sub something else.

    There is a good place down your way for resoling: Jim Rice - Factory Motocross Boot Resole - 800-944-2755

    Hope that helps.

    BP
    #40