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Tales of Woe From a Big Foot Cyclist

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Tales of Woe From a Big Foot Cyclist

Old 06-12-20, 07:51 AM
  #26  
AdkMtnMonster
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Originally Posted by MiPeGr View Post
Absolutely...about 15 years ago, when I was gearing up for a long-distance backpacking trip, it took me longer than it should have to stop asking "do you have X in a 14" and start asking, "what do you have in a 14"?

(Side note: Vasque Breeze GTX fit my feet like a glove...no break-in necessary, and happiness for 100's of miles. Sadly, I outgrew those, and they changed the last for the newer GTX II and GTX III models...still haven't found anything better than the originals.)

On to the topic at hand: my Bont Riot+ MTB's in a 49 Wide arrived yesterday, and they're just barely the right length, and a bit too narrow. Gonna see if the 50 Wide gives me just that extra bit of room such that heat molding them will get me the fit that I want.

For reference, I did trace and measure my feet according to the procedures that Bont and Lake describe. According to Lake, I'm a 47 Wide. According to Bont, I'm a 48 Standard. Neither of those things are true.

Maybe we should all be posting tracings of our feet to compare actual foot shape to shoe sizing in different brands.
I thought the thing was plaster casts of big foot tracks?
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Old 06-12-20, 08:13 AM
  #27  
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Have any of you tried the higher end Specialized S-Works shoes that come in a "wide" size? Not that I want to sell a kidney to purchase new shoes, but I'm wondering if their expensive shoes use the same last (shoe shape) as my Torch 2.0 or if they're somehow "more comfortable" (for 2x to 3x times the price)? Since a pair of shoes can last a really long time, if I knew the high-end shoes fit well, I'd look for sales on the shoes at end of season in hopes of getting them at a better price. However, if they are shaped just like my Torch 2.0 wides are, then there'd be no point in spending the extra money.

The following shoes show-up as being available in "wide".

***** UPDATE *****

I contacted Specialized about the fit of the EXOS vs the Torch 2.0 and the following is there response... Just saved myself a ton of money, kind of

Thanks for reaching out. Unfortunately, we don't offer the EXOS in a wide. The website has a dropdown option for it (I don't know why), but a part number won't be populated. I am sorry for the confusion and any frustration.

Last edited by PoorInRichfield; 06-12-20 at 08:36 AM.
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Old 06-13-20, 09:14 AM
  #28  
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This thread brings up all the bad memories of my entire life, getting shoes (and pants, shirts etc) that fit. I'm 6'4" used to be rail thin, long legs, long arms and feet that are now 14 double AA with a very narrow heal. Being the youngest and tallest of four boys, my pants were hand-me-downs with a patch on least one knee from by older bros. Thanks. I'm ok, just flashing back a bit this morning.
Thank you for all the good information, still looking for the right road shoe.
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Old 06-13-20, 05:42 PM
  #29  
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Shimano has road shoes in a variety of price ranges that come in "wide" according to the Competitive Cyclist web site. Have any of you fellow Big Foots tried Shimano yet? Competitive Cyclist has a decent return policy in that they provide a low cost shipping label:
https://www.competitivecyclist.com/sc/returnguarantee
To make shipping a return even easier, we offer a flat-rate $6.99 UPS shipping label for eligible U.S. customers returning products that don’t need to ship freight.*
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Old 06-13-20, 09:10 PM
  #30  
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Lake in the USA?

Any good sources? I’d go to my home LBS, but they’re in the UK and don’t do free return. Fairly sure I am a 48 W; bit fond of getting double shipping costs if I am wrong from Sigma!
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Old 06-14-20, 06:39 AM
  #31  
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I would recommend you take another look at Lake. I have a very similar problem with my shoes. I really wanted to wear Shimano the last time and they absolutely mangled my feet. Their "wide" size is only 5mm wider. My toes are spread out like yours. If you take a look at the Lake website, you'll find they have just 2 or 3 last types they use. Their " competition" cut has the wider toebox. I suspect any of their models with the comp last will likely work. I ordered them from CompetitiveCyclist as others have mentioned and they are very willing the make sure you get the right size. Lake's website is very informative giving you measuring instructions on how the get your size very close. I got their CX241. They took awhile to break in the leather uppers and now they are by miles the most comfy road shoe I've ever worn.
Best of Luck!
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Old 06-15-20, 09:22 AM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by PoorInRichfield View Post
Be sure to report back here when you get them! I'll admit that looks-wise, I just love SIDIs... they look fast!
So, being a long-time SIDI user, I did order another pair. I got the Genius 7 model in the "normal" width (versus their wider "Mega" version which is advertised as EE/EEE), as I did not have any issue with my current pair width-wise. However, I was looking for a little more toe space, so I ordered up one size to 49 (which was also recommended by the retailer's fit guide). I've found as I've gotten older my shoe size has increased (10-15 years ago I would have been in a 12.5-13 US size, today I wear a 14), so the larger size does make some sense to me. Ordered them late Thursday evening from Merlin Cycles in the UK, and they are out for delivery today in NC (that's fast!). Forecast is for a lot of rain here this week, so they may not see the road for a few days, but I will respond back with fit feedback.

Bonus is that with shipping these came out to less than $130, which is half of US retail prices.
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Old 06-15-20, 09:28 AM
  #33  
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Originally Posted by mprince View Post
I've found as I've gotten older my shoe size has increased (10-15 years ago I would have been in a 12.5-13 US size, today I wear a 14), so the larger size does make some sense to me.
Yup, this was a surprise to me as well at 45 years of ago. Doing a little online research on this, while our feet don't technically get longer as we age, they do spread-out enough to often require a larger shoe.

This issue is exacerbated if one switches to wearing minimalist shoes with a wide to box. Wearing a minimalist shoe will make one's foot stronger and eventually one's toes won't be all squashed together, making one's foot even wider. Technically, this is a good problem to have as a strong footer with spread toes is typically a healthier foot and provides more stability. I've experienced this first-hand as I used to wear a 12-12.5 and now were a 14 That pretty much meant getting ride of all my old shoes and starting over $$$$
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Old 06-15-20, 09:31 AM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by PoorInRichfield View Post
Yup, this was a surprise to me as well at 45 years of ago. Doing a little online research on this, while our feet don't technically get longer as we age, they do spread-out enough to often require a larger shoe.

This issue is exacerbated if one switches to wearing minimalist shoes with a wide to box. Wearing a minimalist shoe will make one's foot stronger and eventually one's toes won't be all squashed together, making one's foot even wider. Technically, this is a good problem to have as a strong footer with spread toes is typically a healthier foot and provides more stability. I've experienced this first-hand as I used to wear a 12-12.5 and now were a 14 That pretty much meant getting ride of all my old shoes and starting over $$$$
You have no Idea how bad I cringe when I see a Child just learning how to walk and they have them in shoes. That will be one more person that won't properly develop foot muscles/form
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Old 06-15-20, 09:59 AM
  #35  
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Originally Posted by Metieval View Post
You have no Idea how bad I cringe when I see a Child just learning how to walk and they have them in shoes. That will be one more person that won't properly develop foot muscles/form
No kidding! Does Nike have shoe lobbyists in Congress that lobby against teaching people why shoes are destroying their feet? I used to think that people that walked around barefoot or with flip-flops on were hippies... now I'm think that they know something I didn't know (or they're hippies )
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Old 06-16-20, 07:55 AM
  #36  
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Got my SIDI's yesterday, definitely a high quality shoe (not a surprise). Definitely more toe room in these compared to my Energy 2's, and overall comfortable (although I can't say they are noticeably more comfortable than the smaller shoe). Unfortunately, even though I followed Merlin's online sizing guidance, I think these are a bit large as I get a bit of heel lift walking around the office that I don't get with the 48's. So since the width of the older 48 is comparable to the new 49, the 49's are going back and I will get a pair of 48's to replace them. Live and learn, that is the danger of buying online (and taking advice from same).

Edit - got a pair of Genius 10's on the way in size 48. Already shipped from Merlin, they may be here by the end of the week. These supposedly have a bit more room in the forefoot than the "traditional" SIDI last (according to more than one online review I read). These are what I really wanted in the first place but could not find them in 49.

Last edited by mprince; 06-16-20 at 01:42 PM.
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Old 06-16-20, 09:09 AM
  #37  
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Yeah, heal-slip is yet another issue with shopping for wide shoes. Some people's feet are wide everywhere, where as feet like mine are only wide across the toes. I've had several pairs of wide shoes where my foot was completely drowning in the shoe. Not only was there massive heal-slip, but I couldn't even fasten the BOA dials or Velcro enough to get the shoe snug on my feet.

Some shoes try to reduce heal slip by using special fabrics in the heal, like "cat's tongue". However, I don't find these grippy fabrics make any sense. A grippy heal fabric will hold your sock in place, but not your heal! Some brands do a much better job of creating a tight heal cup than others. Quite frankly, this is one area where my Lakes aren't that great... the heal is a little loose.

Here's what the "cat's tongue" fabric looks like...

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Old 06-16-20, 09:07 PM
  #38  
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I'm glad it's not just me! OK I don't have the big foot issue (US 10.5/EU44-45), but I suffer terminally from the wide forefoot/narrow heel issue. I haven't been cycling too long, but will offer my limited experience:

Shimano - I'm a 44 in length in a Shimano. But since they're so narrow (or just like most cycling shoes, I guess) - I have to size up to a 45 to get my forefeet in. Forefeet are hurting after an hour or two, heels are slipping all over. I can't walk in them off the bike, and can't climb out of the saddle either. I've had two pairs - RH-088 road shoes, and a lower end MTB pair that I still have. Neither of which are wide, which no one carries and I was told by two dealers that the wides aren't that wide anyway.

Bont - followed the advice of a few others with the canoe paddle foot issue, and tried out a pair of Blitzs. Used the foot tracing method, was told I needed a 43.5 wide. Had to jam my toes in, even after heat molding and using the butt end of the screwdriver method to make room for the forefeet, they caused miserable pain within minutes. Beautiful shoes, super lightweight, love the engineering, but even in wide my forefeet didn't fit the tubs. Maybe if I had a 44 or a 44.5? Then the length would probably cause heel slippage.

SIDI - this is the closest thing I've had to luck, though the heels still slip. First was my Tri shoes, the T-2. These are regular width I think (they don't say Mega, but they are fairly old), but were WELL used by someone else. They're not leather, but definitely felt broken in. Comfy enough I used them as my road shoes for a few years instead of my Shimanos which I ended up selling. Then I got a year-end sale a couple years back (LOVE Merlin!) on Carbon Ergo Mega 4s. Size 45, again, which is too big - but of course they didn't have a 44.5 and a 44 I had tried previously was too small. The Ergos have a heel adjustment screw to narrow the collar a bit. Not enough to eliminate heel slipping, but enough to keep them so they only slip when walking and not while riding. I'm also not throwing down sprinter wattage, so take that for what it's worth

Been wanting to try Lakes for a long while, but as always no one near me carries them and I'm hesitant to pay full price for shoes plus to and from shipping. Especially when my SIDIs are close enough for the time being. The search goes on...

(I had some pics of my various shoes up but apparently having less than 10 posts prevents me from doing anything)
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Old 06-17-20, 07:11 AM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by tonedeaf View Post
Bont - followed the advice of a few others with the canoe paddle foot issue, and tried out a pair of Blitzs.
LOL! My wife tells me I have built-in "flippers" for feet, so when we go for a swim while on vacation, she wears swim fins and I don't. I'd actually like to wear swim fins, but the same problem exists in that industry as does the cycle industry... swim fins aren't made for people with wide feet

I, too, had a pair of Bont Blitz shoes that resulted in the same experience. I wanted to keep them but just couldn't deal with the "tub" design. Why I thought the Bont Riot's I just purchased (and returned) would be any different, I don't know. I tried doing the heat molding on the Bont Riots and that did no good... I would've had to remanufacture the shoe to make them comfortable. So at least I'm officially done trying Bont's now... they probably work great for some, but not me.

The more I hear from others about their experiences, the more I think I can only recommend Lake shoes for people with non-standard sized feet. Lake is the only company that truly offers shoes in multiple widths beyond just regular and wide. While the expense of acquiring a good fitting pair of Lake shoes is going to be high, once found, I think their shoes become the shoes you keep for decades until they wear out. I'm still torn with the real leather uppers of Lake shoes... that make's the shoes really comfortable but really hot.
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Old 06-17-20, 11:07 AM
  #40  
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I have a large bunion on my right foot that makes finding a comfortable riding shoe near impossible to find. The only thing that does work is real leather shoes in a width about halfway between the width of my "normal" foot and the "bunioned" right foot. I had an old pair of Specialized S-Works shoes in kangaroo leather that were perfect, but got destroyed in a moving mishap last year. Can anyone suggest a leather based replacement that could be had for ~ $300?
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Old 06-17-20, 12:27 PM
  #41  
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Lake makes your length and an "extra wide" version of their road shoes. They aren't cheap but I know all about having your toenails breaking the skin of the next toe on long rides.
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Old 06-17-20, 12:30 PM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by mprince View Post
Got my SIDI's yesterday, definitely a high quality shoe (not a surprise). Definitely more toe room in these compared to my Energy 2's, and overall comfortable (although I can't say they are noticeably more comfortable than the smaller shoe). Unfortunately, even though I followed Merlin's online sizing guidance, I think these are a bit large as I get a bit of heel lift walking around the office that I don't get with the 48's. So since the width of the older 48 is comparable to the new 49, the 49's are going back and I will get a pair of 48's to replace them. Live and learn, that is the danger of buying online (and taking advice from same).

Edit - got a pair of Genius 10's on the way in size 48. Already shipped from Merlin, they may be here by the end of the week. These supposedly have a bit more room in the forefoot than the "traditional" SIDI last (according to more than one online review I read). These are what I really wanted in the first place but could not find them in 49.
Sidi's are normally more comfortable because they use a much higher grade of good leather in their construction. That doesn't keep your feet comfortable on long rides unless they really fit.
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Old 06-17-20, 12:36 PM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by bmcer View Post
Can anyone suggest a leather based replacement that could be had for ~ $300?
Lakes are also kangaroo leather (or something from down-under). I don't think you have much choice these days but to go with Lake if you want real leather as nearly all other companies have gone to synthetic materials.

Originally Posted by RiceAWay View Post
Sidi's are normally more comfortable because they use a much higher grade of good leather in their construction.
SIDI uses real leather? I'm surprised by that... their shoes look very plastic, like they're made from synthetics, no?
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Old 06-17-20, 06:16 PM
  #44  
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Originally Posted by PoorInRichfield View Post
Lakes are also kangaroo leather (or something from down-under). I don't think you have much choice these days but to go with Lake if you want real leather as nearly all other companies have gone to synthetic materials.
Thanks for the input. As I read the rest of this thread, it appears Lakes may be my only choice. The CX238 Wide shoes are at the upper end of my budget, but doable.
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Old 06-18-20, 05:37 AM
  #45  
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Originally Posted by PoorInRichfield View Post
Lakes are also kangaroo leather (or something from down-under). I don't think you have much choice these days but to go with Lake if you want real leather as nearly all other companies have gone to synthetic materials.


SIDI uses real leather? I'm surprised by that... their shoes look very plastic, like they're made from synthetics, no?
SIDI's do not use real leather in any of their shoes, either current or from recent (and not so recent) model years. The poster who wrote that is misinformed. My shoes from 2001 used synthetic leather, as far as I know there may have been 1 or 2 models in the early 2000's which had leather, but that quickly changed to 100% synthetic uppers across the line.
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Old 06-18-20, 08:53 AM
  #46  
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Yep same here - the uppers on both pairs of SIDIs I own are synthetic. Both breathe well enough that even riding in FL summer, my feet don't bake (or at least, the rest of my heat discomfort outweighs any potential foot discomfort ). The synthetic leather on the T2 does a good job at wrapping the foot. The 'Italian microfibre' on the Ergo, that does a bit of the 'bend and fold' thing above the ball of the foot. Going to see if I can get a pic up to illustrate.

(edit - nope still can't post pics, even from my own device, until I've made 10 posts...)

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Old 06-19-20, 10:51 AM
  #47  
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Anyone know of a bike shop in southern Oregon that carries Lake shoes? I'm reluctant to buy shoes without the chance to try them on. Thanks!
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Old 06-19-20, 01:43 PM
  #48  
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Based on info from Lake's website:

https://lakecycling.com/pages/store-locator

There is a place in Jacksonville, OR called Cycle Analysis. Looks like also a place in Eugene and one in Bend, depending on how loosely one describes "Southern Oregon".
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Old 06-19-20, 02:01 PM
  #49  
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I can certainly empathize with the shoe woes, although my feet aren't all that big (USA 12ish). After a ton of online research, deliberation and trying on everything at a LBS, I had them order a pair of shoes that I thought would fit my feet and my intended use perfectly. Turns out they don't, and now I'm stuck with a fairly pricey pair of shoes that hurt my feet after 30 mins on the trainer and I can't take them back... I have had so many issues with my feet and it is nothing but frustrating... Never again will I order from a shop or website without a really good return policy.

If anyone has any suggestions for good places to buy shoes online in Canada please let me know!
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Old 06-19-20, 04:52 PM
  #50  
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Originally Posted by noOriginalNames View Post
now I'm stuck with a fairly pricey pair of shoes that hurt my feet after 30 mins on the trainer and I can't take them back... I
If the shoes are clean and in good shape, eBay is pretty much the only place I've found one can go to get some of your money back. Other sites, like Craiglist and other bike classified sites just don't get enough interest for used shoes. Of course you won't get back what you paid, but it's better than having shoe-shaped paper weights sitting around the house. Make sure the shoes are clean and take a lot of pictures so the seller knows what they're getting to maximize earnings. In the USA, the USPS has free shoe shipping boxes that cost a bit less to ship than the giant shoe boxes that our big-foot shoes come in (which doesn't help you in Canada, der hey, but it might help someone else in the same predicament.)
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