2013 Burton SLX's
Well i just got these puppies in the mail. But before I go into that I want to take back my rant against burton. I had no love for this brand because of a few things. I was getting back into boarding seriously this season after like 8 years off. I got some burton gear and most of it sucked.
1. My 2013 reflex cartels cracked a baseplate after 30-40 days on the hill.
2. My 2013 Ion boots were falling apart after 10 days or so on the hill. The toe box had gotten so soft the strap was crushing it and slipping off. The whole boot turned into chewing gum it was so soft.
3. My roommate orders a 2014 barracuda and we are both shocked at how bad the finishing is on the board. The graphics/screen printing is not even aligned to the edges of the board and it looks downright cheap. You can see graphics printed overtop of other graphics where they didn't use enough ink or whatever, and it looks like a bad tattoo coverup or something. On the other hand my cheapass rossignol board finish is like a work of art.
So a couple weeks ago I sent my boots and my bindings back complaining about them falling apart. To my surprise Burton customer service is actually really good. Although the people on the phone aren't the most friendly sounding, to their credit they mailed me a new pair of bindings and upgraded me to a pair of SLX's. I wrote a note on the old boots saying "downgrade me to another boot if you have to, just please don't send me another pair of ions."
Anyways, after I get a few days on these SLX's I will post a better review. But so far wearing them in the house, impressions are really positive. The toe has some substantial backing to it, a hard plastic shell covered by some nice suede material. The whole boot is this plastic/suede construction, great vibram soles. The ions were cheap faux leather (on a $450 boot for godsakes) and the pirelli soles sucked when hiking. Kudos burton. I'm impressed you came through for me instead of feeding me some BS.
You know that the baseplate has a lifetime warranty?
ok 5 days on these bad boys so far, been really busy lately to ride much.
Lots of reviews say omg these are the most comfortable boots ever right out of the box. Bull f-ing shit. These were hands down the most painful boots ever. The liner has built in J-bars unlike the ions which are velcro on. I always removed the inside Jbar cause it pokes the crap out of my ankle bone, but there is no way to do that. So first day on the hill I suffered. Pain was so bad I was screaming and kicking the boots as hard as I could, lacing and relacing several times a run. It ruined the day of riding for me as I wanted to cut my feet off by the end since there were SO many pressure points.
Oddly enough when I wore them around the house i never felt them. But once you get to flexing these boots and riding in them..dam. The stiff plastic shell doesn't help. I should have heat moulded them right from the start.
Anyways after the 4th day they started to feel quite a bit better, I started wearing them on the drive to the hill which helped. Now they fit pretty well, I can make it down the hill without much discomfort. the one big thing I notice is immediately the toe box area has packed out fast, there is a lot of room to wiggle my toes now. I noticed that on the ions as well. Might be a good or bad thing.
Heel lift, I would rate these as average only. Despite the painful J bars they don't really hold your heel that well. There's a bit of lift even if you cinch down the inner lace really tight. The rad pads are stupid. They just dig into your shin and create a pressure point, I don't see how they help at all or why they're even there.
Other negatives, the weird 2 piece plate thingy doesn't play well with my cartels. The overlap is right where the ankle strap grabs, so you have this edge on edge thing going on that I can tell will wear both the binding and the boot fast. This isn't a problem with CO2's or diode straps though cause they are much wider.
Anyways onto the good stuff. The boots are freakin responsive. They are quite stiff. I can really crush my board over on edge with these things.
The vibram soles are really good quality, grippy in the snow and they have this shock absorbing gummy layer in between.
So bottom line, I didn't pay for these boots. I don't have that "WOW they're amazing because they're so expensive" type delusion that some people might. So this is a purely objective opinion. Are they worth $450-500 bucks? No. But they are definately worth $350 at the end of the season sales. they're well made boots.
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