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Winter Cycling Don't let snow and ice discourage you this winter. The key element to year-round cycling is proper attire! Check out this winter cycling forum to chat with other ice bike fanatics.

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Old 12-04-06, 08:50 PM   #1
nixage
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Sidi Toasters (heated insoles)

Okay, couldn't find any threads on these. Anyone try these? I'm wondering if it's worth it instead of buying winter shoes or would they not be warm enough. Anyway, some real world experience would be nice.

http://www.sidiusa.com/winter.html#a
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Old 12-04-06, 09:22 PM   #2
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Cute. Pricey, but that is usually the way it is with gadgets like these. Chances are, if you live in an area rugged enough where something like heated insoles would be worth their price and the hassle of charging them before uses, then neccessity has already forced you to figure another solution. That something may well be the bus!

H
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Old 12-04-06, 10:00 PM   #3
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Wow, those are expensive. There are cheap disposable chemical foot warmers that cost around 10 for 30 USD. But I've heard that the chemical warmers have a tendency to be too warm for some riders.
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Old 12-05-06, 02:37 AM   #4
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The owner of my LBS is going to test these. I will see if I can get some information after he does.
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Old 12-05-06, 03:35 PM   #5
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I wish.
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Old 12-05-06, 05:13 PM   #6
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That price can't be right . I want them though.
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Old 12-05-06, 05:25 PM   #7
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I'm thinking of trying these...

http://www.sahalie.com/jump.jsp?item...roductID=10974

today was 36 degrees with probably a "bike induced" wind chill down to 30 easy and when I got home after 25 miles my toes were literally frozen numb... two pairs of wooley bullies and PI calientoes on too... it's starting to ruin my winter riding fun. I must have circulation issues in my feet.... I thought it may have been too bulky, but I was fine for a while then they started to get cold when I hit decents and flats at higher speeds.

although, the above insoles may not help with wind protection, maybe they'll just help to retain heat better.
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Old 12-05-06, 05:50 PM   #8
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The Sidi Toasters have a built-in thermostat. AND they are remote-controlled. Amazing!
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Old 12-05-06, 06:12 PM   #9
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But $300.00 amazing?
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Old 12-06-06, 08:51 AM   #10
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But $300.00 amazing?
Only $150.00 ea.
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Old 12-06-06, 10:15 AM   #11
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But $300.00 amazing?
Have you ever been on a ride where you would have been happier with a pair of these on your feet and a $300 cheaper bike underneath you?



(I haven't!)



Some cyclists have tons of money - this might be the best option for warm feet - money no object.
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Old 12-06-06, 10:16 AM   #12
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Only $150.00 ea.
Maybe you could split a pair with a riding buddy. Of course, you'd have to fight over the remote...
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Old 12-06-06, 12:33 PM   #13
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Seems a lot of folks can't justify the price on these things.

Well, here's what I think (2cents). If you road and mountain bike during the winter and booties with thick socks just won't do, then I think it's definitely worth looking into. Why? Well two decent pairs of winter shoes (road and mountain), will cost you between $400 and $600 (NW or Sidi). One pair of these is $300. And since you can charge them up to 600 times. They should last you at least 4 years, since you'll use these on the coldest days/nights and only during the winter months.

I fall into the above category, but my dilemna is if these things will actually warm my toes well enough and that they won't fail on me.

It also might be too early to try them out. Maybe the ones that come out in the next few years (if they keep making them) will be cheaper and better.
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Old 12-06-06, 12:38 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by grahny
I'm thinking of trying these...

http://www.sahalie.com/jump.jsp?item...roductID=10974

today was 36 degrees with probably a "bike induced" wind chill down to 30 easy and when I got home after 25 miles my toes were literally frozen numb... two pairs of wooley bullies and PI calientoes on too... it's starting to ruin my winter riding fun. I must have circulation issues in my feet.... I thought it may have been too bulky, but I was fine for a while then they started to get cold when I hit decents and flats at higher speeds.

although, the above insoles may not help with wind protection, maybe they'll just help to retain heat better.
Let me know how they work if you get them. I'm always weary of insoles since I don't like really thick ones taking up room. I already have a large foot and need all the space I can get. I actually usually take my insoles out of my Sidis during summer riding.
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Old 12-06-06, 08:35 PM   #15
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Im going to try some of these. Ill buy some of the disposable for long weekend rides.
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Old 12-06-06, 08:40 PM   #16
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Sidi is hardly the only people that make heated insoles. That said, if you're paying $3 per heating pad, and you're using two a day during the winter months, you're going to blow through the price of the Sidi in only 50 days. Now, I've looked into this, and you can easily find the chemical foot warmers for around $1/each, but that's still pretty expensive over the long term. I'd find heated insoles to be a pretty attractive solution if the choice was between chemical heaters and heated insoles.
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Old 12-07-06, 10:03 AM   #17
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Quote:
Originally Posted by coneill
Sidi is hardly the only people that make heated insoles.
Very true. I ended up going with Hotronic M3s. They have changed my winter cycling life. I'd be a little leery of the Sidi's "automatic" thermostat. The M3s are user adjustable (4 heat settings) with a separate (and ultimately replaceable) battery pack. With the Sidis, once your 600 cycles are up wouldn't you have to throw them out and start over?

As far as the expense goes - I got mine for less than $200, and along with my light(s) I consider these a truly indispensible piece of winter cycling gear - it was 0 degrees F this morning and I never thought once about my feet for the hour or so I was out.

Keeping the road lit and the feet toasty are the only places I've felt the need to invest much money. Otherwise, thrift stores have been very good to me.

Last edited by specq; 12-07-06 at 02:20 PM.
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Old 12-07-06, 10:02 PM   #18
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I think those Toasty Feet Insoles from sahalie.com look pretty good. I wonder if my Sidi's are loose enough to fit them.
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Old 12-08-06, 06:54 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hezz
I think those Toasty Feet Insoles from sahalie.com look pretty good. I wonder if my Sidi's are loose enough to fit them.
I just picked up a pair of the Toasty Feet Insoles, and it didn't make much of a noticable difference. That's not to say they don't help, but it wasn't nearly as big a difference as I would have expected. I imagine it depends a lot on the construction of your shoes, etc. However, I have to say I'm pretty dubious of the theory of heat loss through the cleats. At least with mine they're only attached to the shoe via two small bolts. It seems a lot more likely that I'm losing most of the heat right through the front of the shoe, which is much more poorly insulated than the sole.

On the other hand, I also got a pair of Sealskinz Chillblockers, and those seem to have make a much more dramatic difference. I replaced a pair of thick REI wool socks with a thin liner socks and the Sealskinz and my toes stayed warm the whole way home with it 30F outside, and about 20mph winds, over about an hour ride.
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Old 12-08-06, 12:34 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Phantoj
The Sidi Toasters have a built-in thermostat. AND they are remote-controlled. Amazing!
Two more things to break though.
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Old 12-08-06, 01:30 PM   #21
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Specq, thank's for that link. I can justify 200 bucks for something that will keep my toes warm. 300 is a bit too steep for me (Sidi's)
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Old 12-09-06, 10:02 AM   #22
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what about spending 150 to 300 on some winter riding boots? Bicycling had a little mini review on 3 pairs... anybody try them instead? I would think those would last a lot longer than 4yrs and you would never have to worry about recharging them.
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Old 12-09-06, 10:19 AM   #23
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cineill,

Thanks for the feedback on those toasty Feet insoles. It sounds like they are not going to do much.
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Old 12-09-06, 12:19 PM   #24
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το τέλος αυτού

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Old 12-09-06, 08:13 PM   #25
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hotronics questions

Thanks for the info on the hotronics insoles. The Sidis are certainly slick, but very limited in application. I agree with other posters about the question of the auto thermostat and also the reliability issue. If the battery on one fails, or the charger fails, or the remote fails; you have lost 300 dollars. The warranty is one year so I'd be worried about them failing after the first season, which for most people would only be 50 -100 rides.

About the Hotronics. They are obviously not as well integrated as the Sidis. Is it a hassle to mount the battery to your leg and run the wires? Could you describe how you have them set up? I also like the fact that they can be used in other shoes such as ski boots or hiking boots. The replaceable batteries are nice and they certainly have much more power than the Sidis. What power level do you usually use? Have you used them in other shoes? Do you use the Hotronics insoles or just your standard insoles? Thanks I appreciate the info!

Last edited by austinguy; 12-09-06 at 08:25 PM.
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