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Why do my BOA shoes keep loosening?

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Why do my BOA shoes keep loosening?

Old 01-01-23, 11:50 PM
  #26  
79pmooney
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Originally Posted by Koyote
It's worth keeping a zip tie (or two) in a saddle pack in case a BOA fails.
I like that! A cheap (and very light and easy to stash) solution that will probably bail you out of another jam long before your BOA fails. (And a zip tie trick - the tiniest screwdriver on a Leatheman is perfect for inserting into zip ties to non-destructively loosen them. Eyeglass repair screwdrivers also.)

Now, with dual BOA shoes, I'm guessing they'd ride fairly well with one BOA out, at least to finish that ride.
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Old 01-02-23, 12:34 AM
  #27  
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
Why are these seen as better than velcro straps?

My velcro strap shoes last years and years without me having to do anything.

The idea of replacing a fat ratchet/buckle strap with an anorexic string of plastic fiber seems insane to begin with, even if they stay in place.

My bike helmet has one of these, too (Bontrager Wave Cell), and I have to tighten at least once per ride. Helmets should be set and forget. That seems like a design and safety flaw.
Having used velcro for years and now a boa-like system (Sidi's proprietary thing), I think the reason is that boa can fine tune tightness, and help it conform to the foot's shape, kind of like laces do. Velcro works fine - I never had a problem - but I can see these advantages for boa, and it's probably why some folks like old-fashioned lace-up bike shoes. If you're worried about the cable, I don't think it's longevity issue at all. Velcro, especially the hook part, does indeed wear out. I don't know how it compares to the mechanism and cables. I suspect in the real world, it's not an issue and probably no more of a hassle than getting new hook sewn on the velcro straps of a shoe.

But I could change my mind depending on how these new shoes hold up.

Last edited by Camilo; 01-02-23 at 12:45 AM.
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Old 01-02-23, 06:29 AM
  #28  
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if the BOA is dirty, it can cause your issue.

IMO, BOAs reduces adding 15 years of age to the user, & helps prevent yelling at folks going across the lawn.
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Old 01-02-23, 11:31 AM
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Old 01-02-23, 11:45 AM
  #30  
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I find this thread very helpful.

Iíve had several Velcro shoes, and even more ratchet ones. Iíve had one failure ever, where the buckle literally ripped off the shoe. This was a 15 year old shoe. I managed a good ride with some scrap strap I found along the road.

If one person says the BOA slips and nobody else does, I donít worry about that. But with so many people here saying the same thing to one degree or another, it actually makes shopping a lot easier for me.

I definitely need to retighten my shoes at about 15 minutes. They donít slip but loosen up once Iíve warmed them up.
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Old 01-02-23, 12:00 PM
  #31  
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I have two different pairs of Specialized shoes with BOAs. Both get a quick twist about 15 mins into each ride and then they are good for the duration. Since they can be tightened while still on the bike, its no big deal. One pair is 4 YO and the other 3 and have not experienced a failure. I like the system.
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Old 01-02-23, 12:03 PM
  #32  
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Originally Posted by Polaris OBark
Why are these [Boa tensioners] seen as better than velcro straps?
  1. distributes tension across more of the foot, like a laced shoe
  2. much easier to adjust tension while riding
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Old 01-02-23, 12:27 PM
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I think if I tried to tighten any shoe while riding, I would become horizontal rather quickly.
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Old 01-02-23, 01:01 PM
  #34  
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Originally Posted by rsbob
I have two different pairs of Specialized shoes with BOAs. Both get a quick twist about 15 mins into each ride and then they are good for the duration. Since they can be tightened while still on the bike, its no big deal. One pair is 4 YO and the other 3 and have not experienced a failure. I like the system.
same here. It's not every ride, but an adjustment here & there is expected at times. I've noticed that the warmer the weather, the more likely it'll need a twist or so.
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Old 01-02-23, 07:29 PM
  #35  
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I do know you need to push them in before tightening. Tried after that, but they don't go in any further. The real problem is riding in the cold weather, since I can't tighten them when they're cover with booties. (Got them this past year, thought maybe they needed to be broken in.)
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Old 01-03-23, 06:02 PM
  #36  
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I forgot about my son having the same issue as I had. He replaced his S-Works Boa road shoes with Sidi after 4 failures of the BOA system. His Sidi shoes are now 2 seasons old and have not yet failed, which is 2 season better than the S-Works. Honestly, did the shoe lace need to be reinvented? Really, if you want the "even tension and micro adjustability" of laces, why not just get a lace up shoe?
I use the Sidi ratchet road shoes and have no issues with "micro adjustability" or getting "even tension" across the foot. What the marketing department is selling, a whole lot of folks are believing.
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Old 01-03-23, 06:26 PM
  #37  
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My Bonts (both road and MTB) usually need a click or 2 during my rides.

My favorite shoes were Shimano road shoes with 3 velcro straps from about 20 years ago.
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Old 01-03-23, 08:54 PM
  #38  
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Originally Posted by pakossa
I do know you need to push them in before tightening. Tried after that, but they don't go in any further. The real problem is riding in the cold weather, since I can't tighten them when they're cover with booties. (Got them this past year, thought maybe they needed to be broken in.)
if you want to continue with BOAS, I would put on the covers and trace where the BOAs protrude, remove the covers and cut circles in the covers to provide access to them. Covers are replaceable.

I use insulated toe covers, which arenít nearly as warm (today was 45* and cloudy and the toe covers worked fine) which allow me access to the BOAs if I need to.
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Old 01-03-23, 08:59 PM
  #39  
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero
I forgot about my son having the same issue as I had. He replaced his S-Works Boa road shoes with Sidi after 4 failures of the BOA system. His Sidi shoes are now 2 seasons old and have not yet failed, which is 2 season better than the S-Works. Honestly, did the shoe lace need to be reinvented? Really, if you want the "even tension and micro adjustability" of laces, why not just get a lace up shoe?
I use the Sidi ratchet road shoes and have no issues with "micro adjustability" or getting "even tension" across the foot. What the marketing department is selling, a whole lot of folks are believing.
Sidis are a no bueno for people who need wide toe boxes. I used them for years with their ratchet and Velcro system but as my feet grew, as happens to everyone, had to move to Specialized. Sidi makes a fantastic product though.
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Old 01-03-23, 10:49 PM
  #40  
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Originally Posted by rsbob
Sidis are a no bueno for people who need wide toe boxes. I used them for years with their ratchet and Velcro system but as my feet grew, as happens to everyone, had to move to Specialized. Sidi makes a fantastic product though.
Sidi with Ďmegaí in the name is their wide shoe. Itís not an EE but is definitely a wider shoe.
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Old 01-04-23, 09:06 AM
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I just did an experiment with my Shimano's with BOA. I left them off my feet, tightened the BOA system, then put my hand inside the shoe and tried to press outward to see if the BOA loosened. They did not. I assume what I experience is the foot settles in after being on the bike and moving around from pedaling. Thus the foot position loosens up a bit inside the shoe and that what makes me feel like the BOA system is not staying tight. It is.
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Old 01-04-23, 11:01 AM
  #42  
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Originally Posted by Steve B.
I just did an experiment with my Shimano's with BOA. I left them off my feet, tightened the BOA system, then put my hand inside the shoe and tried to press outward to see if the BOA loosened. They did not. I assume what I experience is the foot settles in after being on the bike and moving around from pedaling. Thus the foot position loosens up a bit inside the shoe and that what makes me feel like the BOA system is not staying tight. It is.
That hypothesis doesnít account for the possible impact of other force factors, such as sudden bump force (which may jar the locking mech) or the the on/off application of force, either of which might cause loosening of the Boa retention system, or perhaps youíre just applying more force through your foot/leg than you can through your hand/arm.

Granted, as a relatively simple ratcheting system, it seems unlikely either of those mechanisms would be at play here; Iíve never looked at any the Boa mechs, so canít venture an educated guess at the cause, but would also want to definitively rule out the equally unlikely cable stretch as a causeÖunless people are reporting the cable actually, physically breaks, a scenario which would suggest a fatigue cycle.
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Old 01-04-23, 11:03 AM
  #43  
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Originally Posted by TiHabanero
I forgot about my son having the same issue as I had. He replaced his S-Works Boa road shoes with Sidi after 4 failures of the BOA system. His Sidi shoes are now 2 seasons old and have not yet failed, which is 2 season better than the S-Works. Honestly, did the shoe lace need to be reinvented? Really, if you want the "even tension and micro adjustability" of laces, why not just get a lace up shoe?
I use the Sidi ratchet road shoes and have no issues with "micro adjustability" or getting "even tension" across the foot. What the marketing department is selling, a whole lot of folks are believing.
And of course, with most shoes you can always go back to laces. Remove the straps, BOA(s) or buckles. Go to Tandy Leather and buy their grommet kit for the smallest brass grommets. (Don't go with the one piece aluminum grommets. I like to make the last, top grommet one size larger but that requires another kit.) Mark and drill 6 or 7 pairs of holes just big enough to get the grommets through. Install with kit and hammer. Lace up and enjoy! Cost - ~12 for the kit, $5 for grommets for the next pair of shoes, ~$5 for laces.

Haven't ripped out a BOA system yet. I have three pairs of formally strapped shoes that until the BOA were my go tos. (Three different cleat systems.) I love the Lake 268 BOA shoes and may well get two more pairs. If so, I will remove the lower BOAs of the fix gear pair and run laces so there is no knob right beside the buckle that I keep spinning and unlocking as I pull tight and loosen the toestraps.
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