Alpinestars Vector Boot Review By Eric Gorr

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DRN is my fault.
Dec 31, 1969
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Dallas, Texas
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Alpinestars Vector Boot Review
Price (msrp): $240.00

Eric Gorr's Review


When I was an editor for Dirt Rider Magazine answering questions for the Ask Dr. Dirt column, one of the most popular questions was “where can I find a boot to fit my calves”. Being a lanky Swede with skinny legs I couldn’t relate. I wondered how big are these peoples’ calves anyways, and why there were so many. So I turned the tables and asked them questions, asking for physical dimensions of their calves so I could compile the data and forward it to the boot manufacturers. I also asked these guys what they were doing right now to protect their feet or modifications to their conventional boots. Well as you can expect there were a myriad of ideas ranging from duct tape to zip ties, to hoes clamps and re-mounted top buckles, and even one guy who just cut the boots off, half way up his massive calve.

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While I was collecting info on boots people offered other comments like is there a boot that has a smooth tip, or a curvature, and a replacement sole or high wear spot. When I pulled the VECTOR boots out of the box I started to chuckle with glee. Some smart Italian guy finally started listening to Americans and built an interesting new boot design.

I couldn’t find anything that I disliked about the VECTOR boot, so lets look at the good stuff! My last set of Apline Stars took a full year to break in because of the stiffness. The VECTOR is comprised of several sections stitched together to enable movement without having to be broken in, which is good because motocross is painful enough without having to suffer through the break-in period.

The next obvious feature that struck me when I strapped on the boots was the natural shape. “Lazy Feet” is a condition that causes knee injuries to riders. I’m cognizant of my lazy feet behavior so I tend not to take them off the pegs, I’d rather augur myself into the ground and take my chances rather than injure my knee by having my forward or rearward dragging foot hook something in the ground. The VECTOR skims over the ground with its curved up smooth toe, so I don’t have to consciously bend my foot up. It’s a bit of a slippery feeling too but if you do need to stab your foot into the ground to keep from falling, it’s still very positive.

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The smooth toe works in the opposite direction too, like when you pivot in a turn and rotate your leg behind you and drag your toe, like in slippery conditions. My older model Alpine Stars had a distinct junction between the sole and the boot that served to hook objects in the ground.

Of course the whole “Big Calve” issue has been addressed with an adjustable top strap that the Incredible Hulk would appreciate. But it is a bit daunting for guys like me with girlie calves, when I have to tighten up the strap almost to the limit.

The last major feature that I liked about the new VECTOR is the soft rubber insert on the inside of the sole. At first I thought it would cause me to slip off the pegs, but the soft rubber bites into any edge. So if mean old Mr. Gravity takes a hold on you over a jump and your feet come off the pegs its not so critical that the boots come down on the pegs aligned. Also the rubber wedge spreads out the force across the sole and reduced the aching in my knees two days after riding. If you ride a heavy bike like mine (KTM 640 Adventure) you’re likely to be exposed to more of the hard foot peg landing forces. The other thing that amazed me about the rubber soles is the vibration absorption capability. My bike is dual-sport and I like to ride on the twisty country roads around Madison Wisconsin. But the massive torquenstien of the KTM LC4 thumper tends to put my feet into a coma after a while buzzing along way over the speed limit. So the rubber wedge insert is now my best friend! The good thing is its replaceable.

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Some of the negative comments on this boot that I’ve read in the magazines are that it doesn’t have that much ankle support. True, this is a 1970s feeling boot not a 1980s plastic feeling stiff boot. This boot is for guys who want the sensitivity and feel from a boot without the negative aspects of vibration or impact. The color of the boot is limited to a combo of black, gray, white, and even suede! Sorry no psychedelic colors or flavors of the month but if you’re really a color freak a little spray paint will fix that.

I highly recommend these boots for guys with big calves, lazy feet, and 70s riding styles that require a sensitive touch.

--- Eric Gorr

General Information Provided By Alpinestars:

VECTOR BOOT
SHIN PLATE: contoured shin plate is injected with high modulus PU for a high level of impact and abrasion resistance.
HEEL/ANKLE PROTECTOR: patented "ankle brace support structure" with additional shock absorbing insert in the ankle area.
SIDE PROTECTOR: extended inside plate protects the side and toe-box area of the boot.
REAR PLATE: calf protection features PU for high impact resistance.
TOE AND LATERAL PROTECTOR: additional injected PU protectors in the toe box and on the outside ball of the foot.
INSIDE LEG PROTECTOR: suede leather protector guards against heat and increases grip.
INSTEP FLEX AREA: wide thermalweld instep for increased comfort and flexibility.
UPPER: leather PU skin.
SOLE: Alpinestars new and exclusive contoured rubber compound is glued and stitched, and features replaceable wide foot peg inserts and a contoured stamped steel shank.
CLOSURE: 2 buckles with memory and a quick release/locking system and 1 calf buckle with memory featuring a quick release click-in system. Buckles are injected with high impact resistant technopolymer.
LINING: synthetic lining laminated with open cell foam. High density contoured padding provides shock absorption for the heel and ankle area.
FOOTBED: removable anatomic footbed.
WATER PROOFING: extended gator for better water protection.
INTENDED USE: motocross/enduro
PRODUCED SIZES: us. 5-15 / euro. 38-51


Contacts:
Alpinestars: http://www.alpinestars.com
 

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