Lightweight MX Boots for Adventure Riding - Atomic-Moto

Discussion in 'Vendors' started by Brtp4, Nov 21, 2012.

  1. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    Fellow ADV Riders,

    More and more people riding dual sport and ADV are looking toward motocross boots for their increased protection. This is a good trend, however many MX boots, especially lower priced models, are far too stiff and cumbersome. Unfortunately, this often results in categorical dismissal of all MX boots.

    Some MX boots are much more livable than others. The key is in the weight, the shapes of the plastic, and their compound. These three models, at three separate price points, all are comfortable, light, supportive, and perform well. They also won't break the bank:

    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/PVRWo275vMs" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" width="560" height="315"></iframe>

    The Gaerne GX-1 is THE standard for light MX boots. The Moose M1.2 Enduro is an Asian-made, but is better executed than any other entry level boots from every other brand we looked at. The Forma Terrain TX, made in Europe, is the newcomer, and features a full mechanical hinge at a lower price point than any other brand available.

    All are comfortable, light (about 1 lb more than Adventure Touring boots) and great for their respective price points.

    Gaerne GX-1: http://www.atomic-moto.com/Gaerne-GX-1-Boot_p_82.html
    Moose Racing M1.2 Enduro: http://www.atomic-moto.com/Moose-Racing-M12-Enduro-Boots_p_867.html
    Forma Terrain TX: http://www.atomic-moto.com/Forma-Terrain-TX-Boots_p_793.html

    BP
    #1
  2. CRASHDADDY

    CRASHDADDY Adventurer

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    These Forma Terrains look nice for ds use. My question is how "tall" or thick the toe area is; am i going to need a different shift lever? My current mx boots take up a lot of room between the footpeg and shifter; need somthing thinner, similar to a road boot
    #2
  3. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    It is hard to answer this in a quantitative way. Additionally, the slimmer the toebox...and this is very important....the more it has the effect of being narrow.

    That said, I could compare the three of these, take some pics and post them up. Also, what boots do you have now? Can you please take some measurements and post some pics?

    FWIW, all three are fairly slim, and most of the time people adapt. I know it gets a lot of emphasis, and up to a point it should. But unless is is egregious (like a Tech 3) I would not put this factor near the top of the list when choosing a boot.

    BP
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  4. CRASHDADDY

    CRASHDADDY Adventurer

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    In reality, the problem here is probably more footpeg location than boot thickness. My mx boots work fine on my DRZ with an aftermarket shifter, there's plenty of room for adjustment. But on my KLR i've bought aftermarket shifters, even cut up stocker and re-welded it, and it's still difficult to get my Sidi Roads in there; forget about an mx boot. Maybe i need to try some aftermarket IMS pegs to move my foot down and back. Those Forma Terrains look pretty compact in the ankle area though, i like that. Nice price too
    #4
  5. lvscrvs

    lvscrvs Been here awhile

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    Great review BP, nicely done. I'm curious to know how you think these 3 compare to the Sidi Adventures in terms of protection (specifically for the ankle and foot), comfort (on the bike and walking), weight and fit. Obviously the Adventures are at a much higher price point, but they are also highly recommended by many.
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  6. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    First, one thing: The Sidis are "Adventure Touring" boots, while the GX-1 / Terrain TX / M1.2 are MX boots. They are one of the more rigid ones, but to be clear they are a different boot category. (Apologies if you already know this.)

    My feeling is that these, and MX boots in general, are more protective for a few reasons: they have a more rigid midsole (for frontal impacts) more plastic and thus support around the ankle and foot, and additional height that helps absorb / distribute twisting force, through a larger area and structure. They also allow use with offroad style knee/shin armor, something we feel is critical.

    Conversely, MX boots are less walking friendly, because of the same factors.

    Comfort, either on or off the bike, is a separate factor. The comfort of a boot is mostly driven by the shape of the foot chamber, amount of internal padding, and proper design of the plastic shapes. An ADV boot built on a crummy last will be uncomfortable, whereas a well-executed MX boot like an SG10 is quite comfortable. One can argue that different categories are more / less comfortable, but we feel the execution if the lasting and plastics design is more important.

    I want to stress this, because we hear one comment so, so often: "I don't want MX boots because they are too uncomfortable, too much". They say this because they have tried on a poorly executed MX boot, which is usually is a bad experience. The reality is that not all MX boots are the same - and not all are uncomfortable. Quite the opposite.

    These three MX boots are good for ADV riding, because they are among the most comfortable, lightest weight, best executed ones we have found. I personally did a ton of comparing, especially to find an entry price MX boot that we could recommend.

    Hope that helps.

    BP
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  7. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    Video review of the Moose M1.2 Enduro Boot. Weighing 3.5 lbs and pricing out at $145, they are a good option for DS, enduro, and ADV riders:

    <iframe src="http://www.youtube.com/embed/PafrMw5kDv4" allowfullscreen="" frameborder="0" width="640" height="360"></iframe>

    BP
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  8. HD Steve

    HD Steve Nonposer in Training

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    OK BP...

    The GX-1 or the G-React?? for the $60 difference. Thanks for the post...I was just getting ready to bite on some MX boots from you...so the info comes in handy...I've been wearing the G-Adventure...ok for on the road...and a little bit of trail, but way too soft to be standing up all day

    SHS
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  9. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    Any time you can step up (ahem) to a hinge, it is a good idea.

    BP
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  10. some call me...tim

    some call me...tim Been here awhile

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    Hi BP, I've watched a few of your vids and I've enjoyed them. Very informative and you seem to give honest appraisals of the products. I was wondering if there's a boot that you'd recommend for adventure riding that's waterproof? It looks like the adventure oriented boots like Gaernes and Formas are waterproof, but I didn't hear you say anything about the MX boots.
    #10
  11. biensur22

    biensur22 Been here awhile

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    A good substitute might be the Gaerne Pro Tech Oiled Boot, not sure on the name exactly. They look very similar to the one you posted above (that's sadly unavailable in the US because everything AWESOME in this world is only available elsewhere...) but with crepe sole and no metal toe bumpers. I believe they're designed more for trials so they're softer and more flexible, but the full leather gives decent enough DS protection and the Gaerne drytech membrane is supposedly waterproof and breathable. I've got the non-waterproof version for adventure riding and general dualsporting, but when it comes to single-track and mx days, I prefer something with a bit more standing support and protection. Just my 2 cents!

    Great reviews! Thanks for the info. :1drink
    #11
  12. Not Dave

    Not Dave I smell bacon

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    Old thread but the same boots are still available.

    I purchased the Gaerne's listed here in a size 13. Unfortunately my toe hits the end of the boot while standing. Guess I need a 14. I didn't purchase them from Atomic but will be returning them to the original store (online).

    Since getting these Gaerne GX-1's I have been reading more reviews on other boots. I like the Forma's listed here and the Moose M1.2 as I have skinny legs so have pretty much settled on one of those two to get instead of the Gaerne.

    Atomic now has the Forma Terrain Evo on sale for $150, the Moose M1.2 for $145. It basically comes down to: Do I order a size 14 in the Moose or go with a 13/48 in Moose or Forma? Don't want to make the same mistake as with the Gaerne in size.

    I do have some A-star SMX-5 street boots in size 48/12.5 and they fit well, some Sidi street boots in 48/13 and they also fit well. It's hard to figure out what will fit. I will be ordering from Atomic just need to figure out which boot and what size.
    #12
  13. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    ISB (nice one, by the way....),

    I am a little surprised that the GX1 size 13/48s are short. I would not have expected them to be short compared to the Alps and Sidi boots you have. Two things that will help:

    - to know if the length issue is more a vertical space / shape problem than length. We can find this by comparing the footbed lengths of the three. My suspicion is that they are all similar, which would mean that the curve at the end of the toe is getting you. If that is the case, the Formas will likely work, because the non-welt sole yields a taller foot chamber.

    - Measuring on a Brannock device. If you come out on the high side of 13, even slightly, you will need a 14. My guess is that you will measure out to a 12.5 FWIW.

    On the Moose boots, they seem a little short, my guess is that you will need a 14. But the two things above will clarify that.

    Hope that helps.

    BP
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  14. Not Dave

    Not Dave I smell bacon

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    The footbed of the Gaerne is glued in. The insole of the A-stars fit in there fine so tried the GX1 on again. My foot slides forward in the boot. It has a high instep, I have a low instep so there's a lot of room in there. Maybe with an extra insole it'll take up the room. If I knock the heel on the floor my foot slides back to the rear and there's room up front so they are long enough. They're just really roomy. Maybe I can cinch down the front buckle more to make them a little more snug on my foot. Thanks for your input. With some adjustment I may be able to wear these after all.
    #14
  15. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    That is unusual....all ours are removable. Also, it seems the boots may be too large, not too small?

    Go to a sporting goods store and try some footbeds. I think you will arrive to a good result.

    BP
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  16. 2Stamp

    2Stamp Been here awhile

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    Brian, are the Forma Terrain TX true to size? On your site you mention something about Australian fit.

    From buying a couple Gaerne's from you I've gone off of the Euro size in my running shoes (Balance Oiled and GX-1). Is this still a good call on the Forma? I'm really considering the Terrain TX at the price point for the mechanical hinge.

    thanks.
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  17. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    Yes on both. Best to use your EU size as the reference.

    Hinge is great.

    BP
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  18. 2Stamp

    2Stamp Been here awhile

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    And order sent today. Thanks for the input!
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  19. levain

    levain STILL Jim Williams

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    Hey Brian,
    shopping for a good MX/dual sport/boot. I've considered something like the Alpinestars Toucan as more of a general use boot, with more offroad protection than my current Vendramini Marathon Steels, but ultimately, I think I'd like a more protective boot, while continuing to wear my Vendraminis for more street/cold/wet riding.

    Several years ago, I took a really good spill on my snowboard and jacked up my right ankle really good. It's fine now, but I still feel it, even as I type, so I'm looking for a super protective boot, with ankle protection in mind for dual sporting.

    I was just watching the Forma Terrain video and they sounded like exactly what I'd like; until you got to the fit. I have pretty narrow feet! I love the sound of the snugness and the hinge around the ankle of these boots, but am concerned they just won't fit right. I'm a 44 in Vendramini that fit like they used my foot for the mold. They have quite a bit of adjustment though...

    Thoughts on fit or other options? I would still consider the Toucans as a replacement for my Vendraminis, to retain waterproofing if you felt the protection was close to something like the Forma Terrain or similar. My Vendraminis will need some TLC soon anyway.. At the end of the day, I'd prefer to have one pair of boots, but understand the compromises that brings.

    Best,
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  20. Brtp4

    Brtp4 Powdercoat it.

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    Hi Jim.

    I think that is a good plan. The Toucan has more support than any other ADV boot, except perhaps the Sidi Adventure. But there is still a big gap between it and MX boots.

    Again, you have the right idea.


    I am not too concerned them fitting you, as long as you went with the welt version. The rear half of the foot area is fairly slim. I think it will hold your foot in place, to the point that the width in the foot chamber is a non-issue. Adding a footbed will help most likely.

    That said....the light weight of these is at least partially due to the fact that there is not as much internal padding as higher end models. They smoke everything else at this price point, but they will be a stark transition from your Vendraminis, in general and compared to some other MX boots.

    If you were going to have only one pair, the Toucans are probably the best all around model. That said, it is still a wise idea to use MX boots, for dirt-heavy ADV. This cannot be overstated.

    IMO the best options within that context are, in order of price point:

    up to $150: Moose M1
    Up to $200: Gaerne GX-1
    Up to $300: Forma Terrain TX
    Up to $400: Gaerne SG-10
    Up to $500: Gaerne SG-12
    "Open Class" Sidi Crossfire TA

    At the $200 level, you get Italian fit.
    At the $300 level, you get a mechanical hinge (BIG plus)
    At the $400 level, get a lot of internal padding.
    AT the $500 level, you get the

    The SG-10s are perhaps the most comfortable on this list. They are heavy, at about 5 lbs.
    The SG-12s are slimmer and more narrow in the forefoot, in a good way. They are also lighter.
    I just started riding in the Crossfire TAs. They are excellent, but actually less padded than some other models. I struggle to compare and describe them, they feel more hard, rigid, "serious". Ironically, I would apply the same words to the Terrains.

    Gotta run, will finish this later....

    BP
    #20