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Old 04-01-2013, 09:23 PM   #1 (permalink)
Donutz
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Join Date: May 2010
Location: Vancouver, BC, Canada
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Default Review: Thirty-Two Focus Boa (2012-2013)

I bought some end-of-season-sale boots this weekend. Actually, I bought several things, but this is a boots thread .

My old boots are Ride Jackson Boas. Second set that I've owned, and I liked them just fine. However, they've had it, and it's time for a replacement. So I went to the Boardroom Clearance Centre at W. 4th and Burrard. They still had enough boot stock for me to be able to try on many different types of boots. I've been a Boa Bigot since day one, but the Rides are a one-boa system and I've been meaning to try a dual-zone boa.

Finally settled on the Thirty-Two Focus Boa, from the 2012-2013 season. They are a dual-zone boa -- one dial tightens down on the top of the foot, and the other tightens across the shin. The liner has a lacing system with a pull-tightener for the bottom half of the liner. The top half of the liner uses Velcro as a fastener. GOOD Velcro.

The boots also come with a spare boa cable and a number of inserts and j-bar-like spacers for adjusting fit.

Impressions
The boots are surprisingly hard to get into -- I almost decided I had too small a size, until I managed to get my foot in. That may be a breaking-in issue. I'm able to alleviate the problem by making sure that the boots and inserts are as open as possible. Taking them off is no more difficult than with my other boots.

Once I got them on, they are very comfortable -- significantly more so than the Jackson Boas, which pisses me off just a bit. Because there are two boa dials, it is much easier to tighten the boots to an appropriate level. Paradoxically, because I can adjust the tightness so well, I find I don't need to have the boots as tight as I'm used to, to get the same level of hold.

Heel lift, at least for me, is non-existant. I mean really non-existant. I don't think I really realized how much movement my Rides allowed until I had these babies on.

These are also a stiffer boot than I'm used to, and I felt the difference the moment I started riding. Dynamic riding was immediately improved. In fact, all my toeside turning is better.

Cons?
I already mentioned that the boots are hard to get into. The only other thing I could come up with is that this boot has a slightly larger profile than my old boots. That required some adjustment to my Flows.

Overall
I like'em. Won't be buying Ride Jackson Boas any more. If you aren't a boa-hater, the two-zone system is definitely worth springing for the extra bucks.
And I really like how the stiffness of the boot contributes to the degree of control over my board.
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