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  • Boot Problem: Shin Pain. Opinions?

    Now that my ski season has finally begun with two BC days and one lift-served in the Tahoe area, a problem that plagued me for parts of the previous two seasons in these Voo Doo boots has returned to spoil my tele fun, especially on lift-served days when it's turns all day. Thought I had it figured out and solved last season. When I bought the boots and they were baked/fitted by the shop, the fitter neglected to pull up the heat-softened tongues and left them too low so that top edges of the tongue's hard outer shells were the same height as the tops of the boot shells. This concentrated the pressure painfully on my shin so much that "driving the cuff" of that back ski was actively discouraged. I heated the tongues with a heat gun and stretched them up so the top edge of the boot shell now delivers its pressure at least an inch below the top of the tongues' hard, protective shell. This seemed to fix it at the end of last season, but I guess not, and I can't understand why this happens. The shop has been very unhelpful. Their lame and only solution was to tell me to stick a piece of carpet padding between my shin and the tongue, which helps only briefly, for a dozen turns or so, then just spreads the pain to a wider area.

    After decades of constant foot pain with alpine boots I was looking forward to comfortable tele boots when I made the switch a few years ago. Garmont is not around to help with this issue. Does anyone have any experience with anything like this in Garmont or other boots? Is it possible that this is just a symptom of some other aspect of the fit of these boots?

  • #2
    Does the boot close snugly around your lower leg or is there gap around your leg? Shin bang is caused in better than 90% of cases I have seen by having a gap around your leg. If you can get the boot to close better around your leg, the problem will at minimum be less severe. But you need to let the shin bang heal before you can notice any difference.

    The top two buckles on most boots have large scale adjustments where they are held onto the shell by T-nuts. That is the place to start. See if you can move the buckles to tighten up the closure around your leg.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by cesare View Post
      Does the boot close snugly around your lower leg or is there gap around your leg? Shin bang is caused in better than 90% of cases I have seen by having a gap around your leg. If you can get the boot to close better around your leg, the problem will at minimum be less severe. But you need to let the shin bang heal before you can notice any difference.

      The top two buckles on most boots have large scale adjustments where they are held onto the shell by T-nuts. That is the place to start. See if you can move the buckles to tighten up the closure around your leg.
      Um...I don't think the boot closes snugly around any part of my foot. I crank all the buckles as tightly as possible, with notches left over, with my foot in, and never feel much pressure anywhere. In fact, when the boot is empty and I tighten the buckles as tight as possible they are in the same notches as with my foot in them. My feet are sort of low volume, but not extreme, and the length of the shell seems correct. I have been adding layers of stiff boot fitting foam on the outsides of the liners to fill the extra space and eliminate heel lift, but I suppose I could add more layers of this 1/8 inch neoprene foam around the ankle. I am pretty good at figuring out this kind of stuff, but this is turning out to be more complicated than it seems at first. The shop that sold me the boots also sold me small piece of the boot fitting foam, but it must be old as the backing paper pulls the adhesive off when removed, and I have not been able to find more of the same stuff for sale, even at Tognar, and when I call and talk to the fitter at the shop that sold me the boots, he blows me off.

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      • #4
        A low volume foot in a Garmont 75mm tele boot is going to have a lot of problems. Rather than padding the liner, the first thing I like to do it shim under the footbed or even under the liner. I use 1/16" shims from SVST. Pretty sure Tognar has something similar. You'd be surprised how much volume a 1/16 shim takes up but if it isn't enough you can always double them up.

        But the shin bang is almost always directly related to the gap around your leg.

        And don't hesitate to recook the liners. My instructions for home cooking are on this site now. I just added them recently, so shouldn't be too hard to find.

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        • #5
          ^^^ Good advice.

          Consider Booster straps. You can get the two-band version, or cut the middle band on the three-band version. I almost always use elastic power straps over basic non-elastic velcro.

          Starthaus in Truckee--in addition to Boosters--also sells a pad that you can put in the front of your shin to take up excess space.

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          • #6
            The Voodoos have a velcro power strap, right? I'd try swapping it for a Booster. That's fixed shin bang issues for me in the past. Much easier to get the Booster strap to get and stay tight.

            Don't know what shop you've been working with but IMO the alpine shops in Tahoe are way ahead of the BC/tele ones in bootfitting. And now that the better alpine shops carry AT gear they're more used to dealing with Pebax (though they may not be able to do as much as they could with a PU boot). You'll have to pay for the work but it may be worth it. Cosmo and Start Haus are the standard Truckee recommendations, I prefer Cosmo. I also like Sako at Bestfit Boots up at Sugar Bowl.

            Comment


            • #7
              Hindfoot,

              The Voodoo has a "last" with a high instep. If you have a low volume foot (narrow forefoot and low instep) then the Voodoo should go on eBay and you should get a Scarpa T1. StartHaus and Cosmos do a good job, but I'd be crazy not to recommend that you can come see me or Sako on the hill at BestFit Boots at Sugar Bowl Ski & Sports just W of the Gondola building. The beauty of going there is you can "test" the results immediately on the hill and do a second round of mods if necessary the same day...not a week later or whenever it works out to get back to the shop.

              Cesare gave solid advice, but a T1 is probably the better solution, plus a few minor mods.

              ain't no turn like tele!

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by cesare View Post
                A low volume foot in a Garmont 75mm tele boot is going to have a lot of problems. Rather than padding the liner, the first thing I like to do it shim under the footbed or even under the liner. I use 1/16" shims from SVST. Pretty sure Tognar has something similar. You'd be surprised how much volume a 1/16 shim takes up but if it isn't enough you can always double them up.

                But the shin bang is almost always directly related to the gap around your leg.

                And don't hesitate to recook the liners. My instructions for home cooking are on this site now. I just added them recently, so shouldn't be too hard to find.
                cesare... Thanks for the good advice. The shop where I bought them did shim under the foot bed, about 1/8", but I was reluctant to have them add more as it seemed like it was raising my heel out of the pocket. This shimming seems to have raised my ankle bones slightly above the dimples in the shell where they should fit. This has been causing medial ankle bone pain when I skin up cross-slope on firm snow, on my edges, so shimming under the liners may worsen this. Even so it may be worth a try to shim under the liners, and Tognar does have footbed shims they say can be used under liners. Are these things solid and not compressible? Seems that would be best. Loosness around my leg/ankle needs to be filled since the buckles and power strap seem unable to reduce it where it counts. Where might be the best places to take up space without messing up the kinetics?

                I pretty much eliminated heel lift by custom cutting a couple layers of 1/8" firm foam pads to fit around my ankle bones and along and ahead of the achilles area. This also took up some volume.

                Thanks for posting the recipe for home baked liners. I copied and saved it when you posted it. It may come in handy.

                Also see my answers to the responses of others. Thanks again.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by LightRanger View Post
                  ^^^ Good advice.

                  Consider Booster straps. You can get the two-band version, or cut the middle band on the three-band version. I almost always use elastic power straps over basic non-elastic velcro.

                  Starthaus in Truckee--in addition to Boosters--also sells a pad that you can put in the front of your shin to take up excess space.
                  LR...Thanks for the suggestions. I see Tognar has both the booster straps and the tongue pad, and will keep those in mind. I was only in the Tahoe area from March 7-11, and it's 7 hours from here, so those resources, sadly are not available to me.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Your boots are simply too big in volume. Dostie is right, a T1 would be a much better match.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by teledad View Post
                      The Voodoos have a velcro power strap, right? I'd try swapping it for a Booster. That's fixed shin bang issues for me in the past. Much easier to get the Booster strap to get and stay tight.

                      Don't know what shop you've been working with but IMO the alpine shops in Tahoe are way ahead of the BC/tele ones in bootfitting. And now that the better alpine shops carry AT gear they're more used to dealing with Pebax (though they may not be able to do as much as they could with a PU boot). You'll have to pay for the work but it may be worth it. Cosmo and Start Haus are the standard Truckee recommendations, I prefer Cosmo. I also like Sako at Bestfit Boots up at Sugar Bowl.
                      Teledad...Thanks for the response and advice. May end up trying the booster strap, but your most appropriate suggestion is to see someone like Cosmo, who on the extremely positive recommendation of my host while visiting that area, I did try several times to see or get a call back from, but he was out of commission with back pain all four days I was in the Tahoe area recently. I am bummed to have missed this opportunity to get these damned boots to finally work for me. Cosmo did a superb job on two successive pairs of Voo Doos of this good friend, so I had high hopes. I hope to be in the Eugene and Bend area sometime in the next several weeks and am on the lookout for a highly recommended boot fitter up there. Here in the NW corner of CA there is nothing, and the shop where they sold and fitted these boots in Mt. Shasta, four hours away, seems out of their depth in this case. I think they shouldn't have tried to fit me into these. Perhaps they knew that Garmont's days were numbered and did not want to get left trying to sell a product with no customer service.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by Dostie View Post
                        Hindfoot,

                        The Voodoo has a "last" with a high instep. If you have a low volume foot (narrow forefoot and low instep) then the Voodoo should go on eBay and you should get a Scarpa T1. StartHaus and Cosmos do a good job, but I'd be crazy not to recommend that you can come see me or Sako on the hill at BestFit Boots at Sugar Bowl Ski & Sports just W of the Gondola building. The beauty of going there is you can "test" the results immediately on the hill and do a second round of mods if necessary the same day...not a week later or whenever it works out to get back to the shop.

                        Cesare gave solid advice, but a T1 is probably the better solution, plus a few minor mods.
                        Thanks, Craig, for the help. Actually, I have a fairly wide forefoot, but a narrow heel, and with a relatively high arch, though I do pronate, so it needs support. I have a couple pairs of custom orthotics, but not for skiing, and can't afford that. I use green Superfeet in everything. But what I did instead for my Voo Doos was to modify the OTC footbed they sold me with the boots, Down-Unders. I sculpted layers of firm 1/8" neoprene self adhesive ski boot fitting foam applied to the undersides to modify the shape of the Down-Under footbeds to replicate pretty closely the supportive shape of my custom orthotics. This supports my high arch and also takes up some of the volume of these boots. But not enough, it seems.

                        Would love to take advantage of any well qualified boot fitter in the Tahoe area, but mentioned it only because I had a chance to visit and ski there between March 7-11, and am now back home in the snow-less NW corner of Ca, a ski shop free zone. There are no shops here and no qualified ones closer than Tahoe or central Oregon, about 7 hours away in both cases.

                        It may come to replacing these boots, though I have less than 20 days on the Voo Doos, and want to see if they can be made to work. I hope to be in Eugene and Bend sometime in the next few weeks and am scouting here and now for recommendations for the very best boot fitters in either of these locations. It's possible Mt. Bachelor may have someone pretty good, though have no recommendation.

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by Hindfoot View Post
                          Thanks, Craig, for the help. Actually, I have a fairly wide forefoot, but a narrow heel, and with a relatively high arch, though I do pronate, so it needs support.
                          Hindfoot,
                          The instep is not the arch. Your 2nd post implied low volume.
                          Originally posted by Hindfoot View Post
                          Um...I don't think the boot closes snugly around any part of my foot.
                          Now you're saying wide forefoot and high arch. High arch (bottom of foot) tends to be high instep (top of foot) so now you are even more of a candidate for the T1. You can't widen a tele boot and the Voodoo has a narrow forefoot with a high arch. Better for a hoof than a foot. This response also suggests the boot is simply too large.

                          As for a bootfitter in Oregon, go to Mt. Bachelor where one of the instructors for the Masterfit University of boot fitting, Mark Elling can dial you in. Email him at demoshop-at-mtbachelor.com or call him at 800-829-2442 x2119. Or go to bootfitters.com and search for yourself.
                          Last edited by Dostie; 13 March 2014, 09:09 AM.

                          ain't no turn like tele!

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Another possible solution. Does those boots have eyelets on the liner?. If so start lacing the liners up. This adds padding to the front of the boot by pulling the liner around and holds the tongue in its proper place.
                            "Just say no to groomed snow"

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              They can fit a liner at the ski shop in Medford. Probably at at the outdoor store in Ashland too although I'm not as familiar with them. I'd definitely recommend Bob in Medford, he's knowledgeable and honest so I think he'd tell you if it's out of his league. I can help you do it too if you'd rather. There's a very specific way to mold a liner if your goal is to take up volume. Basically you just want to get it good and warm (fully expanded) and then lightly buckle your boots so that they're just snug while they cool. If you're trying to fix a race fit it's the opposite - you want them cranked down while they cool. Another option if you're dead set on keeping the shell is to buy a higher volume inner boot. I haven't kept up with Garmont's line much - can anyone comment on the quality of the stock inner?

                              BTW, I've always heard that custom "posting," what you're doing with that foam is not a good idea but YMMV.
                              Last edited by Matt J; 13 March 2014, 09:27 AM.

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