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  1. #1
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    Ordering winter shoes (not boots) this weekend, sizing advice.

    I'm assuming I should size them to accommodate wool socks, correct? My only concern is for the random warm day/week (which is common in New England; this week has been in the high 60s when the last two weeks have been below 50, and next week is in the low 40s) when i wont be wanting the wool socks, but I wont want the hassle of swapping cleats over to my rest-of-the-year shoes.

    My regular shoe size is a 12, my cycling shoes are equivalent to a 13 to make up for my wider feet, and with them at the loosest I can snugly squeeze in wool socks (but not terribly comfortably). I put up with it last winter, but not this winter!

    How many sizes bigger should I order winter shoes to accommodate the bulky socks?

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    Which boots?

    And it's hard to say. How many pairs of socks do you plan on wearing?

    I just bought a new pair of Northwaves. I know they won't be really warm for me in the winter months, I have my Lakes for that. The Lakes are three sizes larger, but the Boa system helps snug them up pretty well, no matter the number of sock pairs I'm wearing. But I wanted something for this time of year, and the spring, where I want to ride my good road bike(the Lakes are SPD shoes). I bought them one size larger, figuring I might wear just one pair of thicker wool socks with them, and my older Northwaves two sizes bigger felt pretty snug with two pairs. Seems Northwave may have widened out the toebox a bit since then, as even with the wool socks they feel a little loose. Lots of space with a regular cycling sock, but I'm gonna wear them with the regular sock and see how much cold they can handle, and if they do alright, then I'll order another pair in my regular size and sell these.

    And buy an extra pair of cleats instead of contantly swapping them between shoes. that way you're ready no matter what the temp, with no fuss.

  3. #3
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    I currently have what I believe are an older model of the MX85s: http://www.veltecsportsusa.com/defau...85_11&clr=BKSL

    I'm most likely going to be ordering the MX140s: http://www.veltecsportsusa.com/defau...40_11&clr=BKOR

    I'd rather a mountain shoe so I can walk in them more normally. I intend to wear one pair of heavy duty wool socks (they're hunting socks). I'm ordering through my LBS so I should be able to try one one or two sizes to make sure they fit before I buy. I've been considering a second pair of cleats but that adds about $40 to what already will be a significant dent in my wallet.

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    From what I've read of the MX140's, they have no extra insulation to speak of, just waterproof. Have you considered the Specialized Defroster? Also said to be not really warm enough for coldest winter, but at least it is built with some insulation. And just a little bit cheaper.

    I got the road version of these. http://www.probikekit.com/display.php?code=X0564

    If you're able to try them on, then you should be pretty much able to figure out the right fit. Take the soicks you're planning on using with you. You want the shoe to be a bit loose so circulation in the foot isn't cramped, and keep the feet warmer.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by rob! View Post
    I'm assuming I should size them to accommodate wool socks, correct? My only concern is for the random warm day/week (which is common in New England; this week has been in the high 60s when the last two weeks have been below 50, and next week is in the low 40s) when i wont be wanting the wool socks, but I wont want the hassle of swapping cleats over to my rest-of-the-year shoes.

    My regular shoe size is a 12, my cycling shoes are equivalent to a 13 to make up for my wider feet, and with them at the loosest I can snugly squeeze in wool socks (but not terribly comfortably). I put up with it last winter, but not this winter!

    How many sizes bigger should I order winter shoes to accommodate the bulky socks?
    If you want to use bulky wool socks you will want them at least two sizes over. But you need to try them on with the socks you have in mind. I have seen some very bulky wool socks that are so thick you would need 4 sizes over to fit in them. If you can afford it get a second pair of cleats for the winter shoes. If you try to make a compromise between your winter and summer shoes you will not be very happy. They both need to work in different situations and need to be suited for that. Sidi makes shoes in wide widths so you may not have to start at one size larger to make the width accomodation.

    Also, most of the winter shoes are just made of neoprene. They are warmer than regular shes but don't breath well enough so your feet get damp and then cold even with thick socks. You have to wear a neoprene sock first as a vapor barrier to keep the wool sock dry so it keeps you warm. I would try the shoes on with both a neoprene sock and your wool sock to get the right size. IF they are a little big for 1 wool sock that's OK. Better slightly loose for a winter shoe as a tight fit will wipe out any benefit.
    Last edited by Hezz; 10-29-10 at 11:44 PM.

  6. #6
    LET'S ROLL 1nterceptor's Avatar
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    If money is an issue and you're using SPD's, you can just get the platform pedal that snaps on, then just use whatever winter boots you have now.

    I got the MXZ302 last year: http://www.veltecsportsusa.com/defau...Z302_11&clr=BK
    It made my daily 20 mile commute bearable, in my area(NYC) it only goes down to 10F. My toes were nice and toasty,
    just one pair of wool socks.

    Quote Originally Posted by rob! View Post
    I currently have what I believe are an older model of the MX85s: http://www.veltecsportsusa.com/defau...85_11&clr=BKSL

    I'm most likely going to be ordering the MX140s: http://www.veltecsportsusa.com/defau...40_11&clr=BKOR

    I'd rather a mountain shoe so I can walk in them more normally. I intend to wear one pair of heavy duty wool socks (they're hunting socks). I'm ordering through my LBS so I should be able to try one one or two sizes to make sure they fit before I buy. I've been considering a second pair of cleats but that adds about $40 to what already will be a significant dent in my wallet.

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    I did my first cold weather ride in the new Northwaves today, and must say I'm pretty impressed. Put in my Specialized insoles which took up a little bit of the space, and wore a single pair of Defeet Woolie Boolie socks. Temps were about 42-43 degrees, with a wind chill about 6-7 degrees colder according to weather.com. My feet were probably the warmest part of me. Which surprised me a bit, as I don't remember my previous pair of Northwaves keeping me quite that warm.

    I know that this isn't really cold winter temps, and I still don't think these will be all that warm when things get below freezing, but if you're not planning on riding in really cold weather, but just want something a bit warmer for upper 30's-low 40's temps, you'd do well to check out the Northwaves. They're even making an 'Arctic' version of their Celsius mountain bike shoe, which should be even warmer than these. Prety cheap too, relatively, if you buy from a Euro dealer such as Probikekit or Wiggle.

    Look good too.


  8. #8
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    I wear the Lakes, and ended up getting a size 45 for my size 10 feet, which is perfect with a heavier ski sock.

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    If you haven't pulled the trigger yet, Colorado Cyclist is blowing the CX 140 and MX 140 in selected sizes for $100. Maybe you'll get lucky ond they have your size.

  10. #10
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    I actually ordered the CX140 from my LBS yesterday with a second pair of Speedplay cleats for my X5s for around $200 (I get a discount off retail), so I wont have to swap the cleats between my shoes. My current shoes are 48s, and the new ones I just ordered are 50EE. They'll probably be bigger than I need, but that's what I want; I'd rather have a bit of room and tighten them up than risk have them too snug. I had checked out Specialized shoes, but my regular LBS doesn't carry the brand and I don't get the sweet discount at other local shops

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    The most important thing is to get them big enough. Which it sounds like you probably did and getting the extra wide width was wise. You can always put on another pair of shoe covers or rig some homemade insulated shoe covers up if they are not warm enough.

  12. #12
    Senior Member NealH's Avatar
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    The second most important thing when ordering oversize shoes is to ensure you can locate the cleat in your optimum position. Sometimes the cleat can't be located far enough back on oversize shoes to achieve the optimum position for the foot. So be sure the shoe provides adequate cleat adjustment range.

  13. #13
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    The cleat is getting installed by the same shop that does my fit, and I'll be sure to wear my wool socks when getting it set up so that I can get optimum fitting. Now I'm just hoping the shoes aren't too big

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    I find that the difference between cycling socks and my thick merino socks can be accommodated by removing the insoles. This lets me use the normal shoes down to about 30F. After that I switch to the Lake boots and will add Thermo Soles when we get close to 0F. But I am a commuter, not on the bike for longer than an hour, so not talking really long rides.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Bat56 View Post
    I find that the difference between cycling socks and my thick merino socks can be accommodated by removing the insoles. This lets me use the normal shoes down to about 30F. After that I switch to the Lake boots and will add Thermo Soles when we get close to 0F. But I am a commuter, not on the bike for longer than an hour, so not talking really long rides.
    By removing the insoles you're moving your foot closer to the cleat and the steel plate over it. Might actually be making your foot cooler.

  16. #16
    people's champ marley mission's Avatar
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    started wearing these and they keep the feet very warm

    http://bravesurf.com/Shop/ProductDet...,_Gloves_Hoods

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    Quote Originally Posted by rob! View Post
    The cleat is getting installed by the same shop that does my fit, and I'll be sure to wear my wool socks when getting it set up so that I can get optimum fitting. Now I'm just hoping the shoes aren't too big
    Though it degrades performance somewhat it's better if the winters cycling shoes are a bit loose. The foot stays much warmer this way. But you will loose a little pedaling efficiency.

  18. #18
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    I still haven't gotten shoes yet; the 50EEs were going to be far too big (I forgot my brother has 50s in cycling shoes; tried them on with my wool socks and they were still massive!). The Lake distro said they don't make 48s in EE, and the shop couldn't find Sidi or Garneau winter shoes. I've been really frustrated with my LBS over this matter in the amount of time it takes for them to get back to me with each development; ordered on a Wednesday night, was called the next Tuesday saying they didn't carry my size. It's rather uncharacteristic considering how I've been treated in the past.

    Tomorrow I'm checking out another local shop that's a Specialized dealer to see if they can get Defrosters big enough for me; they're sizing chart seems to differ from other brands, and if I can get EEs that would be a plus.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by rob! View Post
    I still haven't gotten shoes yet; the 50EEs were going to be far too big (I forgot my brother has 50s in cycling shoes; tried them on with my wool socks and they were still massive!). The Lake distro said they don't make 48s in EE, and the shop couldn't find Sidi or Garneau winter shoes. I've been really frustrated with my LBS over this matter in the amount of time it takes for them to get back to me with each development; ordered on a Wednesday night, was called the next Tuesday saying they didn't carry my size. It's rather uncharacteristic considering how I've been treated in the past.

    Tomorrow I'm checking out another local shop that's a Specialized dealer to see if they can get Defrosters big enough for me; they're sizing chart seems to differ from other brands, and if I can get EEs that would be a plus.
    This is the kind of typical frustration you get when trying to buy winter bike shoes. The LBS doesn't stock any of these things usually because only a few people a year buy them. You are forced to go to the larger online stores where you don't get a chance to try them on first. Then you must return them if they don't fit right. Also, the sizing from one brand to another can be off a whole size or more so you can't assume the 50EE is too large unless it is the same brand of shoe. If going with a EE shoe you probably don't need to go two sizes over unless your foot is really a EE.

    The two sizes over for a winter shoe assumes that your buying a shoe of the same width as your regular shoe. If your buying a shoe that is wider than your regular shoe I would suggest only one size over. Or even your normal size if the brand size runs large.

    I can't see where you state what your actual foot width is. It is a good idea to know this so that you can make a better guesstimation. Most standard cycling shoes assume a C width I believe which is average. This is an important piece of information because it is the width that is the most important to get right so the shoe fits OK. If you only have to go up one size to fit your feet you probably only have a D width foot which is just a little wider than normal. IF going with a EE width three sizes over it would be way too big. Your already going one size over to get the width so if you are getting a wide shoe stay with the same equivalent size 13 shoe in an extra wide width. That should come close to working.

    Let me restate in more detail my theory on winter shoe sizing. Assume your starting with the perfect shoe fit size. You want one size longer and two sizes wider. So if your foot is actually a 12D you want a 13 EE shoe. Often you can't get the width shoe you want so you have to go up two full sizes which is a common occurance. Which is the reason I first stated the two sizes approach. I think you should start with a 48EE size and see how that works. However, the Lakes 46 is supposed to be equivalent to a 12.5 US Mens size. So a 46EE in Lakes might work. 48 is supposed to be a US 13 in SIDI brand. Make sure you use the brand of shoe you are looking at's own sizing chart as a starting point but sometimes these are not correct as the last sizing can vary between product models.

    Depending on the shoe brand you will probably need a 46EE, 47EE or a 48EE. Good luck.
    Last edited by Hezz; 11-13-10 at 07:14 PM.

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