Biker Boots are an important accessory for every motorbike rider, whether you are commuting to work or a weekend catch up routine. Your snug helmet, leather gloves and armored jacket will not be complete without your favorite sturdy biker boots. Its your faithful boots that will take you all around when you are out on the bike and even protect you from foot and ankle injuries, it should also be comfortable enough to walk around wherever our day takes us. With a motorcycle boot, a biker primarily needs protection but deep inside one also yearns for something which is stylish and charming to wear all day at office or at college.
Knowing what to choose and what not to choose is a major thing. There are quite a lot of leather boots available in the market but getting the right one for you is what that matters. If you are about to purchase a pair of boots for yourself then several factors should be kept in mind including the material, build, height and closures.
A gear with the best fit provides you with maximum protection. An extra padding is an advantage as it gives you more comfort. In this article we will be speaking all about what makes a biker boot different from a regular boot, what you should be looking for, and how to pick the best one for you and your unique needs.
What makes these biker boots so special and expensive?
Motorcycle boots are designed with rider-specific characteristics that are suitable for off-road, racing terrains and even street riding. Importance is given for ankle protection, increased torsional stiffness to prevent flexing and soles which are oil-resistant to prevent you from skidding when putting the foot down.
Furthermore the built-in shifter pads, buckles or lace-retention designs, multiple stitched seams may all come as a strong point at the time of a crash. The boots of course has to be durable and cozy for the rider. If you are on a small budget, even the cheapest motorcycle boots are better than everyday shoes. If you get in a crash wearing a $100 pair of boots, you may not walk away without a scratch, but you will avoid a lot of damage that a typical fashion or work boot may not have been able to forbid.
Getting off on the right foot
Considering the physical characteristics before making a purchase is highly recommended.
The sole of your choice depends on the type of riding that you will be doing. A stiff rubber sole provides protection when you're moving and traction when you stop. A softer sole on the other hand helps to grip the footpeg better but is certain to wear down a lot faster. Perfect soles can actually prevent you from tipping over if you plant your foot in gravel, oil or sand. Also, consider boots with a heel, they may offer a better "hold" on your bike's pegs.
Material and Protection
In contrast to the soft leather or canvas material featured in our regular walking shoes, the motorcycle boots will be flaunting something more substantial. Majority of the boots will be made of thick leather to have a high abrasion resistance. These beauties will also be reinforced in critical areas including shin, ankle and calf with much thicker material known as “Kevlar”. This will in fact protect you from any potential injuries from a crash.
Of lately some manufacturers have been offering boots with textile materials that are both abrasion resistant and light. If you are a person who will be commuting in changing weather then make sure you will be wearing one with treated leather as it repels off the water even if they get soaked on your ride.
With street boots, it's common to find boots that feature steel plates around the toe area to keep your toes from getting crushed. Many riders fear that this can break free of the boot during a crash and sever the toes, but this is almost impossible. Steel plated toes have been proven by many professional riders to protect your feet and should be seriously considered.
If we take an account of the injuries that has happened, the foot trapped during a crash tops the list. This can in fact break, sprain and injure your ankle. In order to get adequate protection the boots should be over the ankle and have adequate protection. A high-top boot may seem to be a lot stiffer but does a lot when it comes to your security.
Choosing a comfortable and perfect fitting boots is vital. When you are purchasing a new pair of boots make sure that you try it with a pair of socks that you will be wearing when you ride. One may find it difficult to put on and take off these boots when compared to your regular walking shoes. Perhaps, your pair of boots should be snug enough to stay on in the event of a crash and even loose enough to allow your feet to breathe. That's why regular court game shoes or cowboy boots aren't smart options. To stay comfortable—and safe—as you're riding, reckon a pair of high-quality motorcycle boots.
How you want the closures on the boots is your personal choice. From laces to Velcro there are a handful of options for you. The most popular choice tends to be laces owing to the precise fit they give and with the ease of removing the boot, however they may go undone while riding and can snag on the bike while mounting and dismounting. Some boots like the Icon Super Duty 4 comes with a buckle to strap down these laces thus ensuring enough safety.
Velcro and buckles are also quite common. These types of closures often allow a rider to get a much more secure fit than laces, and are typically found on race boots to ensure that a boot will stay on in the event of a high speed crash.
With that note lets take a look at the popular motorcycle boots designs that our currently available in the market.
Harness Boots – These boots sports a rugged appearance and are a common style among European bikers. Harness boots usually comes in various heights, but the most liked ones are from 25 cm to 30 cm. The design is unique with a strap that wraps around the foot across the back of the heel which is attached with a ring on each side. The most common colors are black and brown, but harness boots can be found in other colors and suede leather as well.
Engineer Boots – These are very popular with bikers. The boots are most often made of heavyweight black leather, have a rounded toe and range in height from short (10") to crotch-high (38"). The most typical height is between 10 and 18 inches. The Engineer boots flaunt a single strap with a buckle across the instep and thus comes with a round toe. The adjustable leather strap at the top of the shaft allows you to get the perfect fit. In order to provide absolute traction, most of the Harness and Engineer boots comes layered with Vibram Sole.
Shorty Boots – As the name suggests these boots are 25 cm or shorter in height. They are even called as tactical boots as they are perfect for motorcycling and everyday wear. Many of the bikers has voted this to be the most comfortable style of boots so far to be worn by them during motorcycling.
Tall Biker Boots – These boots comes in a height from 35 cm to 51 cm and is featured in both Harness and Engineer style. Bikers prefer these tall boots owing to its extra protection it gives to the legs. Tall biker boots are a must if the motorcycle you are riding has got hot exhaust pipes close to your legs or even when you are riding in cold weather. These boots certainly makes an impressive look when worn with jeans and breeches. The most well-known brands of this style of boot include Chippewa and Wesco.
Motorcycle Police patrol boots – These boots are usually 43cm to 46 cm tall and can be custom-made as well. Motor officers places these as a part of their dress code. Black is the only available color option. The boots feature a Vibram Sole with a rubber or lug tread design and may come with or without laces at the instep. The most well-known brands of this style of boot include Dehner, Chippewa, and Wesco.
Race or Motocross boots – These beauties are tall and safeguard the area around the foot and the calf. They have several technical features and are liked by bikers who go for motocross sport and dirt riding. These boots are usually 16" tall and are made of synthetic materials that can withstand tremendous wear as well as provide ultimate protection to the rider's legs and feet. Most of the high-quality motocross boots have Kevlar inserts for additional strength. These boots have buckles across the front so that they can be put on very cozily over nomex pants or racing leathers.
The popular Biker Boots brands
Boots are an investment in your life and as such will last a lifetime if you choose the right one.
Chippewa – These boots are hand crafted in the USA by skilled craftsmen by using only premium raw material. Bikers all around the world adore this brand as these hold up very well and are quite sturdy.
Boulet – Boulet boots comes all the way from Canada. These boots are harness boots traditionally but arrive along with a few cowboy boot styles and soles which are apt for motorcycling. A Boulet boot of 14 inches height is the same height as a Chippewa of 12 inches in height.
All American - The California based manufacturing company produces great boots for motorcycling. The prominent models are tactical boots and patrol boots. These boots are sturdy, as well as provides great comfort.
Wesco – The two classic styles- Harness and Engineer as well as motor patrol boots are made very well. These boots can be custom ordered from this brand. You can order one according to your preference of the style, height, color, lining, hardware, shifter pads and even soles. Though these pair of beauties might cost you a fortune, they will last for a lifetime for certain.
Daytona - This was the first boot company to put a separate booty inside a boot shell, a technique later imitated by all of the major boot brands. Their boots are handmade in Germany and, quite simply, the top-quality that you can get.
Alpinestars - One of the reasons Alpinestars are a leader in the boot industry is because the boots they put their racers in are also available to the everyday riders. Alpinestars protective gear now adorn MotoGP World Champions Casey Stoner and Jorge Lorenzo as well as World Superbike Champions Ben Spies and Troy Corser.
And finally after you have found a perfect pair of kicks that match your foot and your style, make it certain that those boots fits your ride as well. You don't want to invest in a pair of boots only to find out that the shifter pad is too thick and it won't squeeze in between the foot control and the gear shifter. In addition to this, a heel that is too big will just get in the way and make it challenging for you to move your foot where it needs to be done quickly. Thus a lot goes into buying a perfect biker boots.
So hope you have enjoyed reading this piece of information. What have been your experiences with the boots on this list? What boots will you recommending to buy? Please let us know in the comments below.