Aerostich Combat Touring Boots

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Don Coyote, Oct 24, 2017.

  1. Don Coyote

    Don Coyote Long timer

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    Not sure if i'm searching wrong, but couldn't locate a dedicated general thread for these boots. Now that they are on the verge of extinction, perhaps it is time.

    I'm wondering about waterproofing. The CTBs have been overall good with water, but after a year or two i had mussed up the left toe with the shifter enough that water was leaking in there before anywhere else. I put on tuff-toe and it was good for another few years. A couple of years ago the left boot started to leak easily. When i examined it, the vamp had started to separate. I had it repaired at a cobbler, but it still leaked the same. I ended up polishing the boots well about that time (earlier this year, something i had only done once or twice the previous 7) and applied some Aquaseal for the first time since original purchase. Mind you, the right boot has been highly water resistant this whole time.

    The leaking continued, seemingly more from the welt than the vamp. Two more coats of Aquaseal and it still leaks, although i have not been in consistent rain to determine if it is lessened at all. The tuff-toe is still solid enough to protect the surface from wear, but has cracks in it. Seems like that could be leaking, but it also seems the moisture is more from the outside area of the toe.

    My cobbler is recommending Bear Grease treatment of the entire boot over more Aquaseal applications. I see BG is a well regarded product for regular leather items. Has anyone tried it on the CTBs? One of the major features of these boots is the silicon-impregnated leather that allows the water resistance while maintaining better breathability than Gore-tex style bootie linings. I'd like to make sure the Bear Grease doesn't perform different because of the silicon, and that it still allows breathability as good as Aquaseal...
    #1
  2. squish

    squish Out of the office.

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    Combat touring boots are a twenty year old design that wasn't very waterproof back in the day.

    I found that for real frog stranglers the only thing that worked was gore Tex socks.

    I don't seal my boots but condition them ever couple of years.

    I got my CTB in 1998 and with one resolve and strap replacement the keep ticking.
    But time really has marched on and there are other far better boots about there.
    #2
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  3. Tall Man

    Tall Man Priest, Temple of Syrinx

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    Click for pre-existing thread.
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  4. Don Coyote

    Don Coyote Long timer

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    That's the one i posted in about the manufacturing issue, but was looking for one about general discussion of these specific boots (including lites of course).
    #4
  5. 06ltd

    06ltd Been here awhile

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    I love my lites. They'll hopefully be the last street boots I buy.
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  6. LexLeroy

    LexLeroy Whiskey Tango Foxtrot Supporter

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  7. Don Coyote

    Don Coyote Long timer

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    Not sure why this didn't show up before since i used the exact thread title as my search terms, but i guess this might have been appropriate to resurrect.

    Another good thread with info on ditching the velcro...
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  8. Don Coyote

    Don Coyote Long timer

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    Sucks to actually read what was posted in the last few hours...

    Considering how many pairs have been sold up to the past year and that many people get decades of use out of them, i don't think they've vanished from the face of the earth yet, even if Aerostich can't find a place to have more of them made at the right price point.
    #8
  9. Don Coyote

    Don Coyote Long timer

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    Since the CTB came out, the "Adventure" market has boomed and become saturated with all sorts of niche products that do this or that better. I think the people who want the best quality 'do-it-all' equipment have been swamped out of market relevance by all this, but are still around. I also think the CTB is one of, if not the, best offerings for that group. I have tried only two other comparable boots (which both sucked hard in comparison) but browse websites and check in on comparison threads here occasionally. The CTBs have done everything i've wanted of them for 7 years now and look to offer at least that many more so i haven't worried much about others. Four season commuting, crashing in various terrain at various speeds, 100,000 miles on the cycle and my main footwear off of it, touring trips, snow shoveling... the main downside was the velcro which went bad after the first winter or two, but i eventually was able to farkle them up by having the flaps replaced with buckles.

    If something happened to these and i couldn't find a replacement pair, i guess i'd try the Sidi Adventures. But i don't do OR stuff for shits and giggles so the armor seems like it would be superfluous, possibly even a detriment if it made it more difficult to walk or interfered with feel/feedback on the pegs. I broke my CTBs in following the Aerostich directions and they have maintained a fair amount of stiffness, flexing in a few points that formed to match the contours of my own feet. The lacing system is quick and efficient and seems to have provided enough support to hold everything together on the times i have banged/pinched them around in various accidents.

    I never had a problem with water ingress the first year. After my shifter started to wear away the finish on the left toe, that area began to leak. Tuff-toe helped for a while, but i didn't treat them for a few years and they became progressively less water resistant. A new coat of Aquaseal has the right boot back to good resistance, but the left is leaking a bunch for some particular reason. Apart from that, they have been plenty resistant to deal with the wide array of situations i need them for. The more i can do to increase water resistance without harming breathability (perhaps the most important feature of these boots), the better of course, which is why i asked about the Bear Grease. However i noticed in another thread someone suggested tent seam sealant, so i think i will try that on the left welt and vamp and continue with the Aquaseal treatments for now...
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  10. Don Coyote

    Don Coyote Long timer

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    Have you tried the boot raincovers? I have goretex socks also, but keeping water out entirely is much nicer for the following day...
    #10
  11. Chuck in Indiana

    Chuck in Indiana Been here awhile

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    Yes, I carry a set of boot raincovers (from Aerostitch) with me. If it's looking like an all day rain situation, and heavy, I'll use them with good success. For normal rains, lighter and off-and-on, I have not been using them and have not had wet feet. I normally coat my Lites with mink oil a couple of times a year, particularly at the seams.
    #11
  12. squish

    squish Out of the office.

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    I've been lucky enough to have tried a bunch of boots over the last twenty years.
    And I've kept my CTB for most of that time.

    For me they were never quite right, but never so wrong that I never got rid of them.

    Not enough protection for dirt riding
    Too much weight for a street ride

    Every place is a compromise.
    #12
  13. Schlug

    Schlug JockeyfullofBourbon

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    put something on and stay in that position.
    You experience differs from mine greatly.

    My CBTs have completely dry in all rain. Never leaked a bit. Snoseal is all I ever used, and not very often.
    #13
  14. Mr. B

    Mr. B Slowpoke

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    I had two pairs and neither one leaked in heavy, all day rain.
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  15. Don Coyote

    Don Coyote Long timer

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    Snoseal, Aquaseal, Au Natural...?
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  16. squish

    squish Out of the office.

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    What I found is that my boots would first wet out, then after a couple of hours let water in. And being leather they would take a while dry, like a few days. They still were my go-to touring boots for 15 years of the last 19 years so there must be something there.
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  17. Flipflop

    Flipflop Long timer

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    I've had mine 10 years or so, and they are still going... About time for a resole though!
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  18. Schlug

    Schlug JockeyfullofBourbon

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    put something on and stay in that position.
    With a quality waterproofing they won’t allow water to wick through the leather. Have you dressed them at all? I treat mine twice a year, maybe, and should do it more often, but I’ve never had the leather saturated.

    Different bikes have different spray patterns, and the amount of water thrown at ones boots varies, but honeslty you could make these as dry as the very best Gore-Tex boots out there.
    #18
  19. squish

    squish Out of the office.

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    I'm not a fan of gore tex boots.
    I only own some simply because you can't find some types of boots with out the membranes. (mostly hikers)
    None of my MC boots are gore-tex lined.

    I'm also not a fan of goop or glop to smear on boots, I used to be, and I found that leather that has been frequently treated breaks down faster and wears out quicker. the goop (sno-seal, Neetsfeet, Mink-oil, any of the thicker old timey leather dressings I've tried and have had the same experience modern silicon stuff, it stinks and it's proven to me to be no more water proof then the old timey stuff, I don't do use it.)

    I condition my CTB with a light weight compound; a couple of times of year. Like Lexol
    I live in the southwest and I don't ride in the rain enough for it to be an issue.
    I've also had my CTB since 1997 and the leather is still going strong so I feel like I'm doing something right.
    As is my velcro, the liner on the inner tongue flap is flaking off. the laces are a little frayed.

    The boots were never marketed or sold as waterproof, and i never expected them to be. Nor am I displeased with the fact that they get wet inside or the leather saturates.
    it is in my experience that it happens to these boots.
    #19
  20. realjpedersen

    realjpedersen n00b

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    What are people going to now as an analog / replacement? does anyone make anything close?
    #20