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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 03-19-09, 07:50 AM   #1
bdinger
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Bontrager shoes for monster feet

Hi Clydes,
I have big feet, generally I wear a 12.5-13 EEE, so finding shoes that fit comfortably for me is quite a challenge. That's one thing that kept me from cycling shoes so long, I couldn't find some that fit well on my monster feet. I was surprised when i stopped at the LBS and they told me to try out Bontragers, being as many long-timers here know, not much of a fan of Bontrager .

After trying on the base "MTB Race" I was shocked, they fit very well on my feet. Granted I had to go up to a 49/14.5 as it seems they run about a size-size and a half small, but I had just enough toe room,a nd the toe box is wide enough that I had a comfy fit. I bought 'em the next day.

Well.. those after two rides had a situation with the sole that didn't work well with me. YMMV, but I couldn't stand them. So I ordered the Bontrager RL MTB. A little, by a hair, narrower but a great snug fit. I've put about 50 miles on 'em in the past two and a half days, and I can't say enough good about them on the bike. They have a REALLY rigid sole so they're lacking in the walking around department, but oh man are these going to be great for long rides. Here's some more thoughts:

http://www.chubbysuperbiker.com/2009...ing-clips.html

Summary: I'm converted. The stiff sole makes all the difference in the world, clipless is fine - I don't notice a huge difference yet, but they aren't bad - and I'm a big fan. If you have big feet like I do, I recommend trying them out. The price is pretty dang steep, but shoes are one thing I never skimp on, I've had enough days with sore feet in my life..
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Old 03-19-09, 08:12 AM   #2
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Interesting, thanks for posting.
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Old 03-19-09, 09:46 AM   #3
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Folks might want to consider the Specialized "Body Geometry" shoes as well.
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Old 03-19-09, 10:22 AM   #4
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Interesting. I just had the opposite experience shopping for road shoes. I tried the base-model Bontrager on and found it too tight in the toe box. On a whim I tried a 2008 Shimano R086 in the same size and found it much more comfortable, though the insoles included are nowhere near as nice.

I don't typically buy wide shoes though...
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Old 03-19-09, 10:23 AM   #5
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I have a US size 15 foot and wear size 50 Sidi's. I found them by chance at a LBS on discount. Three seasons in with lots of metrics and a few centuries I have never had hot spots or any shoe trouble whatsoever. They're great.
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Old 03-19-09, 10:37 AM   #6
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I had the same problem with the bontrager's being too narrow once on the bike. They were really comfortable for standing.

I had another problem with these shoes: the ratchet mechanism. The aluminum piece that the ratchet handle pivots through has very thin walls, as well as a good deal of play during ratcheting. I actually broke through this piece while trying on the first pair at my lbs. If you don't have the ratchet lined up well, the force of normal use can break through this part. I would be careful while ratcheting and stock up on replacements. Or just avoid this shoe until the design is improved. Go with some Sidi Dominators.
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Old 03-19-09, 10:39 AM   #7
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http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/M...x?ModelID=8059

A good price on the Sidi Dominator. $144 + $20 shipping to USA.
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Old 03-19-09, 08:32 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by The Historian View Post
Folks might want to consider the Specialized "Body Geometry" shoes as well.
+1, I should have mentioned my shopping methodology, I've heard nothing but good about Specialized shoes so they were high on my list, but the local Specialized dealer is TBD. The one I used to visit seems to have decided to go the discount big box route, and now sells low end junk, I hear Specialized yanked their distributorship due to this. However, I know someone who swears by Specialized shoes, and keep hearing good things.
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Old 03-19-09, 08:35 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by justin70 View Post
I had the same problem with the bontrager's being too narrow once on the bike. They were really comfortable for standing.

I had another problem with these shoes: the ratchet mechanism. The aluminum piece that the ratchet handle pivots through has very thin walls, as well as a good deal of play during ratcheting. I actually broke through this piece while trying on the first pair at my lbs. If you don't have the ratchet lined up well, the force of normal use can break through this part. I would be careful while ratcheting and stock up on replacements. Or just avoid this shoe until the design is improved. Go with some Sidi Dominators.
Interesting! Which Bontragers did you try out? It's interesting, I wonder if my feet aren't as wide as I thought?

Also the ratcheting mechanism seems a little cheap, but I'm not terribly worried. I've got a good shop, and they do a good job of standing behind what they sell.
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Old 03-19-09, 09:21 PM   #10
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I am going to be try on some Specialized ones soon, I have 5E wide flippers. I will report back on my experience since I know there are many clydes that can't afford the prices of the Sidi and other brands that have wide designed lines.

Thanks for the heads up on the Bontragers, I will add them to my list if the Specialized don't work.
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Old 03-19-09, 09:48 PM   #11
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Originally Posted by bdinger View Post
Interesting! Which Bontragers did you try out? It's interesting, I wonder if my feet aren't as wide as I thought?

Also the ratcheting mechanism seems a little cheap, but I'm not terribly worried. I've got a good shop, and they do a good job of standing behind what they sell.
I tried the mountain RL.
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Old 03-20-09, 07:57 AM   #12
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I tried the mountain RL.
I wonder if they've fixed it already. Mine took about 3 weeks to ship after the LBS ordered 'em, and I do have the metal piece, but it's decently thick. Just for fun I was beating it up a bit here a minute ago, and it doesn't have any play. I'm definitely going to keep an eye on it... I'm still wary of them
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Old 03-20-09, 12:28 PM   #13
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The Lake Cycling shoes are offered in a wide (EE) size. Sometime this summer I'm going to do the SPD thing again with Lake shoes, for a 12.5-13EE foot.
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Old 03-21-09, 02:20 PM   #14
Jerry in So IL
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Thanks Ben, I'm thinking of getting a pair for when century rides come around. My platforms are ok for around here though. Don't want to do the "slow fall" like Jay did a few weeks back!

Jerry
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Old 03-22-09, 02:10 AM   #15
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1st Comment: Awesome to hear you are loving them. I am loving my RXL Road shoes as well.

2nd Comment: For those of you that have a broken ratcheting mech. I received an email at work on Friday (late) that they know about the issue and have made a replacement. Head to your LBS Bontrager dealer and they can get you the replacement. This is not a huge issue, just be careful tightening the strap. The issue was that they were breaking under extreme stress. Sounds like our people huh? =D

3rd and final comment. Ive recommended everyone that buys one to get your foot scanned at the next running/tri/athletic expo. ESoles are usually at all of them. They are the ones that made the soles for Bontrager. The one in the shoe works for about 90% of people great, but in case you are one of the 10% you will enjoy the shoes even more if you spend the extra $30 to get the right arch support.
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