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  1. #1
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    Jun 2008
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    ISO boot press fittings

    Bootfitters, have you seen, or know where to find, a fitting for a boot press which will do a width expansion, ideally with an extra protrusion for 6th toe space? Ive seen ankle-navicular combo punches but never one for width expansions.

    At its simplest it could be an oval punch with a matching cage about 3 inches long. Id love to not use a hydraulic expander for this super common adjustment.

  2. #2
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    Sidas makes a wooden 3-4in long piece which you could easily drill a hole to accept a sixth toe attachment. They also have an excellent female arch which allows you to keep the negative pressure well away from the heated plastic. SVST has a plastic football which would also work for the die, but is a little short for going full width of foot.

    Generally given the amount of heat needed to do a full width of foot stretch, I prefer the hydraulic press because the boot can then be easily tossed in the snow or freezer to hurry up the cool down process, rather than leaving it on a press for 30-45 minutes to cool down.

  3. #3
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    Oct 2003
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    https://blademaster.com/web/en/2570-...nd-accessories

    anything from them that might work?


  4. #4
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    Dec 2010
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    I made a wood one once, designed to fit over an existing Superfeet/Blademaster oval, but it cracked quickly; if you had machining and welding capability it would be a worthy project but I would make the head from HDPE or aluminum. For the most part I use a large round head ("Set of Toe Pieces" in mtnlion's link) and reheat/move it 2-3 times to get extra width over a longer area than just the met head. I heat spot #2 while the boot is on the punch for spot #1. The SIDAS arch with pivoting supports worked great until the crew destroyed it, we have alternate ways to keep the ring off the outer shell using a combination of 1x2 wood sticks and 2x4 blocks with griptape and velcro on them.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2007
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    Mt. Baker
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    sun valley ski tools makes a wide assortment of fittings just did this.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
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    Golden
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    Those oval walker spot press attachments are close but that cage/female side doesn't give much forgiveness for working around buckles, etc.

  7. #7
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    Are you talking about the variable arch from Sidas? I've never used one like that, looks like it wouldn't efficiently push on the shell around the punch.

    I don't find that I need to add much heat nor leave boots on the press for long periods of time anymore. Granted, I do more touring boots than thick PU race boots but I haven't had to leave most boots on a press for more than three minutes since leaving Whistler 12 years ago when everything was thick and stiff. The only plastics that tend to be a pain in the ass for rebounding are Salomon's custom fit plastic. Decent heat and snow packed in the cage does the trick.

    I think a three inch punch would hit the 5th met and the meat behind it quite sufficiently. You can always make it longer by overlapping punches and massaging it smooth. A bigger attachment will just reduce the amount of times you move it. I also find that width expanders tend to reduce height over the foot unless you heat up the boot for a long time and really pack it full so it can collapse.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by GoldenBC View Post
    Are you talking about the variable arch from Sidas? I've never used one like that, looks like it wouldn't efficiently push on the shell around the punch.

    I don't find that I need to add much heat nor leave boots on the press for long periods of time anymore. Granted, I do more touring boots than thick PU race boots but I haven't had to leave most boots on a press for more than three minutes since leaving Whistler 12 years ago when everything was thick and stiff. The only plastics that tend to be a pain in the ass for rebounding are Salomon's custom fit plastic. Decent heat and snow packed in the cage does the trick.

    I think a three inch punch would hit the 5th met and the meat behind it quite sufficiently. You can always make it longer by overlapping punches and massaging it smooth. A bigger attachment will just reduce the amount of times you move it. I also find that width expanders tend to reduce height over the foot unless you heat up the boot for a long time and really pack it full so it can collapse.
    I'm not sure what SIDAS calls it; it's a nice stainless steel curved bridge with an offset mount point and rotating pads at the ends. It works well but the pads come off (should have designed a rubber pad that slips over like a brake pedal pad on a car) and the threaded ends are too small a diameter and too short, so the pads loosen and fall off and eventually can't be threaded back on.

    Compared to a decade ago, I find I can handle most punch jobs in 15 minutes or so and they hold their shape. Thinner shells and more workable plastic compounds are nice, eh? With the Salomon and Atomic heat-moldable shells, I generally over punch them a bit so they'll be good when the plastic's memory kicks in.

    Any device that enlarges the perimeter of the forefoot has the potential to lower the height of the toe box; the key is heating only the part you want to move (holding the gun very close to the shell but applying it intermittently so you don't melt the surface before the interior is hot). Some boots are tough to widen without dropping the edges of the scaffo (i.e. Scarpa F1 and Maestrale) - the solution is to heat the top edge of the scaffo separately while shielding the side of the forefoot and then push the "bent" part back with gloved fingers and hold it while it cools. The plastic is so thin it doesn't take long.

  9. #9
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    Dec 2010
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    PS If you go to the Czech SIDAS site, it is the curved brace pictured on the right in this photo:

    https://www.sidas.cz/odstranene-prod...267050336.html

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