Light Shoes? (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)- Mtbr.com
Results 1 to 26 of 26
  1. #1
    ●●●●●●●●◌◌
    Reputation: phlegm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4,223

    Light Shoes? (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)

    [Yep, could be a cross-post to the Apparel subforum, but I'm too lazy.]

    I love my old Shimano MT51s, but they are getting a bit ragged. I also just realized that they are tanks:

    Light Shoes?   (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)-img_1222.jpg

    Didn't realize I was riding with more than a kilo on my feet, so I figured I could do better than that pretty easily, but still get a quality, properly fitting shoe. Also, when we consider Weight-Weenie-ism, we typically like to focus on "rotational mass" and how a light wheelset is easily noticeable. What about rotating shoes? Huh? What?

    Anyway, I really like how the Shimano shoes fit, and given that I'm ordering online, I wanted to be confident in sizing. Aside from the fit though, the MT51s were bombproof.

    Shimano has a surprisingly good website dedicated to shoes now, which a lot of details and a great comparison chart:
    OFF-ROAD - CYCLING FOOTWEAR AND PEDALS - LIFESTYLE GEAR - SHIMANO

    As a starting point, we see their XC90 top-end shoe with custom molding. They're pretty light at a crazy 627g for the pair (claimed, size EUR 40), but very pricey.

    I finally settled on the XC51, which is far cheaper, and only 1g heavier (claimed) than the more expensive XC70 shoe. I am trading away a carbon fibre cleat plate for a cheaper, and presumably less stiff polyurethane version, but I figured I'd give it a shot.

    I opted for the "'N" or narrow version of the show, which interestingly sports a different colour variation, which I prefer anyway. I'll call out a couple of disappointments that you can see in the pics below:

    1. There's a cheesy shine to the shoe that I'm not a fan of.
    2. While it can accommodate front spikes, the "plastic" in the sole lugs seems like something you'd find on a child's toy - or at least that what it looks like to me. It seems like rubber would be better.

    Light Shoes?   (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)-img_1225.jpg
    Don't look directly at the shoe, else you risk blindness.

    Light Shoes?   (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)-img_1226.jpg
    Might be hard to see, but the sole lugs strike me as being made of a hard plasticky substance, as opposed to grippier rubber.



    The fit is perfect though, and the narrower version was a good choice. I'm snow-bound for the next couple of months, so no way to judge the stiffness of the cleat plate, overall fit, and get a sense of durability.
    The weight is also another disappointment. I realize the weight claim of 633g total (317g per shoe) is for a smallish size (EUR 40 / ~ US 7.5), but it seems like a big weight difference @ 382g for a EUR 44 / ~ US 9.75:

    Light Shoes?   (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)-img_1223.jpg
    False advertising by Shimano, or does the weight jump drastically as the size increases?


    Maybe it's still a good deal @ $120 and good weight for my size. I'll report back as to durability. I also should mention - in fairness to weight on the old MT51s - is that I'm trading off some ankle coverage with the new low-cut shoes. I'm not sure if I'll really like that, as I suspect the old shoes saved me from a few ankle bone scrapes.

    In the meantime, if you can share some other good, lightweight shoes, I'd appreciate it.
    Last edited by phlegm; 02-23-2015 at 02:43 PM.

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation: nunokas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    88
    Ok. There goes my latest aquisition:



    [IMG]


    These in size EUR 43.


    Regards

  3. #3
    ●●●●●●●●◌◌
    Reputation: phlegm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4,223
    That's great, and I like the look better than my shiny ones above.

    What model/name is that shoe, and what was the cost BTW? I know Pearl Izumi stuff isn't generally cheap.

  4. #4
    Illuminati
    Reputation: scant's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2004
    Posts
    1,724
    Bont are also very light. I use there road shoes & they;re also very comfortable
    Bont Cycling Shoes :: Vaypor XC

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2013
    Posts
    255
    I used S-Works shoes for the last season, and they have held up pretty darn good. The fit is incredibly tight, but they fit almost like a hockey skate, so I'm used to the feel. Their website has their weight at just around 370g for one.

    Specialized Bicycle Components

  6. #6
    mtbr member
    Reputation: nunokas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    88
    Quote Originally Posted by phlegm View Post
    That's great, and I like the look better than my shiny ones above.

    What model/name is that shoe, and what was the cost BTW? I know Pearl Izumi stuff isn't generally cheap.
    Hi phlegm. They cost 140$ on amazon

    They are way lighter than my mavic tempo and very comfy. The ruber on the sole has a lot of grip. I like the small touches that PI put in their project-x shoes. They have a new line with BOA system

    Full carbon sole:

    " width="549">

    Old tempos weight with cleat:

    " width="549">


    regards

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2007
    Posts
    295
    I've been using these shoes for the past 3-4 years and they really are nice. Maybe not the lightest available but you can form them to your feet exactly like you would do with hockey skate of ski boots. You put them in the oven and after that in you feet and let it settle...perfect fit! I was using Shimano shoes before.

    Louis Garneau T-FLEX 300


    Claimed weight: •Approximate weight (size 42/1 shoe): 365 g/12.9 oz

    Mine are size 43 but I don't have a scale!

  8. #8
    mtbr member
    Reputation: nunokas's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    88
    Quote Originally Posted by lRaphl View Post
    I've been using these shoes for the past 3-4 years and they really are nice. Maybe not the lightest available but you can form them to your feet exactly like you would do with hockey skate of ski boots. You put them in the oven and after that in you feet and let it settle...perfect fit! I was using Shimano shoes before.

    Louis Garneau T-FLEX 300


    Claimed weight: •Approximate weight (size 42/1 shoe): 365 g/12.9 oz

    Mine are size 43 but I don't have a scale!
    Hi.

    Those shoes look good and i like the specs/price of it.

    That's another brand which isn't too common in Europe...


    regards

  9. #9
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    2,318
    I have the flex ls 100. Carbon sole with boa. Pretty sure they were under 360g for size 45. So far they are great, they only have one boa dial but it works well for me. I would recomend them.
    Last edited by machine4321; 02-25-2015 at 04:47 AM.

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation: RS VR6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    5,237
    S-Works Trail. Hardest pair of shoes I've ever worn. So stiff the uppers hurt my feet.

    Light Shoes?   (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)-trail.jpg

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation: WR304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    5,064

    Light Shoes? (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)

    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    S-Works Trail. Hardest pair of shoes I've ever worn. So stiff the uppers hurt my feet.
    Is that an extremely small scale or a massive shoe?

  12. #12
    ●●●●●●●●◌◌
    Reputation: phlegm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4,223
    Quote Originally Posted by WR304 View Post
    Is that an extremely small scale or a massive shoe?
    Ha! He might work in the circus in between rides.

  13. #13
    mtbr member
    Reputation: RS VR6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    5,237
    Its a really small scale. I wear a size 7.5.

  14. #14
    ●●●●●●●●◌◌
    Reputation: phlegm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4,223
    Interesting, so if you wanted something to seem much larger, you should put it on that scale. The possibilities!

  15. #15
    mtbr member
    Reputation: RS VR6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    5,237
    Objects on scale are smaller than they appear.

    Shoes are all US 7.5 / Eur 40

    Northwave Striker Carbon 5 / Crank Bros cleat and shoe shield

    Specialized Comp / Crank Bros cleat

    Specialized Pro Road shoe / Speedplay Zero cleat

    The Northwave is the most comfortable out of the three pairs of MTB shoes I own. I can't tell the difference in weight when they are on my feet.

    Light Shoes?   (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)-shoe-weights.jpg
    Last edited by RS VR6; 02-26-2015 at 03:21 AM.

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation: WR304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    5,064

    Light Shoes? (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)

    Here are some scale shots of the shoes I've got at the moment. I did have a pair of new 2015 S-Works XC MTB shoes but they weren't right and have gone back. I didn't weigh them. They felt light though with minimal padding and a much narrower fit than other Specialized MTB shoes, including the 2015 S-Works Trail shoes (I measured the S-Works XC MTB shoes as 6mm narrower than my other shoes across the toe box).

    All these single shoe weights include a set of installed Shimano SH51 SPD cleats, 52g per pair. (Deduct 26g approx for the cleat from the weights below).

    This picture shows a 2015 Specialized S-Works Trail MTB shoe in a Euro Size 44, stock insole and Shimano SH51 cleats. 438g



    This picture shows a 2012 Giro Code MTB shoe in a Euro Size 43, stock Giro "supernatural fit" insole and Shimano SH51 cleats. 409g



    This picture shows a 2014 Northwave Extreme Winter GTX winter shoe in a Euro size 43, stock insole and Shimano SH51 cleats (lighter than phlegm's Shimano summer shoes in the first post! ) 488g



    As I was weighing shoes I thought you might like to see some insole weights too.

    Stock Specialized BG foam insole Euro size 44. 25g



    Giro "supernatural fit" foam insole Euro size 43. 26g



    Solestar Kontrol footbed Euro size 43. 67g

    This is a shaped carbon fibre footbed for increased foot stability. You can get a custom version but this is the off the shelf model.



    I've been trying to sort out my pedalling a bit. My thread about cycling shoe insoles is here:

    https://forums.mtbr.com/xc-racing-tr...l#post11798733

    .

  17. #17
    ●●●●●●●●◌◌
    Reputation: phlegm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4,223
    Great post WR304. Great point re the cleats. My monster MT51s had Crank Bros cleats installed - deduct 30g from the posted weight. My new XC51s did not have a cleat, as pictured.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation: WR304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    5,064

    Light Shoes? (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)

    It would be interesting to see how weights scale across different shoe sizes. I don't think I've ever seen where someone has done that publicly - weighed each size of a particular cycling shoe and listed them all side by side.

    Some shoes come with toe studs fitted too. Claimed weights from manufacturers probably exclude these.

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    2,318
    Weighed my LG tflex 100. One shoe was 410 with shimano cleat. Pretty nice weight for half the price of the sworks I was looking at.

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation: WR304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    5,064

    Light Shoes? (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)

    When you're looking at shoes there are a few pointers towards what's likely to be a lighter shoe:

    - A summer shoe with lots of thin mesh in the upper for ventilation has less material so will save some weight.

    - A shoe with just velcro straps is likely to be light. The ratchet binders on higher end shoes add weight. Along with the ratchet mechanism itself the shoe upper has to be re-inforced with extra stitching and inserts to stop the ratchet pulling out of the shoe under load.

    - A shoe with a minimal sole tread is probably going to be a bit lighter than one with a full tread. A chunky tread across the entire sole adds weight.

    - A carbon fibre sole doesn't seem to automatically mean a lightweight shoe. The lower end plastic soled shoes are just as light. You're not guaranteed a super light shoe by going for a carbon fibre sole.

    Here's an example of this with an expensive shoe and a relatively cheap shoe, save 11g per shoe for $175 USD:

    Specialized 2015 Sport MTB shoe (velcro straps, plastic sole) $100 USD Size 42 Claimed weight 360g

    http://www.specialized.com/us/en/ftr...hoes/sport-mtb

    Specialized 2015 Pro MTB shoe (boa fastener, carbon fibre sole) $275 USD Size 42 Claimed weight 349g

    http://www.specialized.com/us/en/ftr...b-shoes/pro-xc

    There are some important caveats to this. Ratchet fasteners are usually more secure than velcro (especially in mud) so your shoes will stay at the tightness you intend.

    Carbon fibre soles are vastly stiffer than plastic soles in cycling shoes. In mountain bike shoes this means you are less likely to get hot spots and discomfort under the ball of your foot when pushing down hard on small pedals and you also get some (debatable) power transfer benefits. For me those two factors are very noticeable.

    Shoes that claim to have "carbon re-inforced" soles for added stiffness are often expensive but in practice these soles are frequently closer to a shoe with a plastic sole and can still give hotspots under the cleat. A full carbon fibre sole, as seen in shoes such as the Giro Code MTB and Specialized S-Works Trail is a whole different level of stiffness. The downside of a full carbon sole is that a very stiff shoe isn't as easy to walk in off the bike.
    Last edited by WR304; 02-27-2015 at 03:32 PM.

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation: RS VR6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    5,237
    Here is what I've found from going to entry level shoes...to mid ...high end.

    Material is one...but the fit is completely different. I've run Specialized (road and dirt) from bottom to top. The low level Comp shoes don't fit as comfortable. The uppers and insoles do not feel the same. Soles are flexy. The high end shoes feel like they have a much better more supple fit. Same goes for the buckles. The Comp and Pro shoes both have ratchets...but the ones on the Pro work much smoother.

    Sole stiffness is the biggest thing for me. When I went from the Comp MTB to the S-Works Trail...the sole is something I was able to feel from the first pedal stroke. On a long ride or a ride with steep climbs...my arches would be a bit sore the next day with the Comp shoes. The SW fixed that. Unfortunately, the SW didn't work out either. Sore arches went away, but has a hot spot on the left side of my left foot.

    I'm using the Northwave shoes now. They have a nice supple feel and the ratchet ankle strap works better for me than the Boa on the SW. They have the "Speedlight 3D Carbon " sole. Not sure how much carbon is actually in there...but the stiffness is pretty close to the SW.

    What the SW did have that was nice soft rubber lugs on the sole compared to the hard plastic lugs on the NW.

    When I buy shoes...I always look towards a high end shoe now...and high end doesn't always mean expensive. I've seen the Giro Code pop up on Chainlove for 60 bucks. If you're patient...deals will always come up.

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation: WR304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    5,064

    Light Shoes? (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)

    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    Sole stiffness is the biggest thing for me. When I went from the Comp MTB to the S-Works Trail...the sole is something I was able to feel from the first pedal stroke. On a long ride or a ride with steep climbs...my arches would be a bit sore the next day with the Comp shoes. The SW fixed that. Unfortunately, the SW didn't work out either. Sore arches went away, but has a hot spot on the left side of my left foot.
    Going from wearing my plastic soled Northwave Extreme Winter GTX shoes to the super stiff carbon soled S-Works Trail summer shoes (it's almost spring here, lets just not mention the 4c temperatures, strong winds, freezing cold rain and hailstones from today's ride...) has been a very noticeable difference.

    Which place exactly was causing you a hot spot in the S-Works Trail shoe?

    After just one ride in my new S-Works trail shoes last week there were some obvious problem areas. The most pressing was the lower boa fastening placement. Where the boa fastener is bolted to the shoe it protrudes inwards inside the shoe. This hard edge was pressing against the side of my foot.

    The next problem area was across the tongue of the shoe. There's not much padding in the shoe. A thin ridge runs across the tongue by the lace retainer made of what feels like either plastic or raised stitching. It's very hard and when you tighten the upper shoe boa down this ridge digs into the top of my foot.



    For my left foot I've used Silipos gel discs for many years to pad out where the splint presses on my foot in a cycling shoe. As I had several spare gel discs available I added some to my right foot also, one covering where the lower boa fastener is and one over the top of my foot, adding some protection to the areas that needed it. The gel discs are re-usable (they last for years) and go against the skin. They're held in place by the sock (no need for tape or sticking them on).

    https://www.simplyfeet.co.uk/index.p...ody-discs.html



    The gel discs seem to have worked for making the S-Works Trail shoes wearable. I've done 15 hours riding in them now without any more soreness in the areas that were causing me problems initially.

  23. #23
    ●●●●●●●●◌◌
    Reputation: phlegm's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Posts
    4,223
    Q - Should you have to install your own gel pads on an S-Works shoe?

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation: RS VR6's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Posts
    5,237
    Quote Originally Posted by WR304 View Post
    Which place exactly was causing you a hot spot in the S-Works Trail shoe?
    For me its the left foot. The protruding bone behind the pinky toe. Its fine when pedaling...but once I start descending and the trail starts to get rough...there is a ton of pressure in that area. The first thing I want to do when I get back to the car is take off the shoe.

    I've tried riding with the BOA loose and my feet feel like they are going to come out of the shoe. The BOA feels like its either too tight or too loose. When the shoes were brand new...I could not get my feet into the shoe. I had to completely undo the BOA strap...and I don't have wide feet. Eventually they loosened up. Initially the ankle protector part cut into my ankle...but that thankfully softened up. After about 6 months...I gave up and bought another pair of shoes. IMO...the shoe upper is just too hard.

    How thick are the silicone pads?

    I might try getting one of those shoe stretcher things and put in the left shoe. See if that'll make a difference.

    This is just my experience with the shoes. I really want to like them and have had good experiences with all my shoes from Specialized.

  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation: stew325's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2011
    Posts
    387
    This may be a bit off topic, but thought I would mention that the boa closure systems have lifetime warranty. I just ordered new boas for my 2013ish s-works XC shoes free from Boa. No questions asked. No return of old parts required.
    Just need to figure out which system you need.
    Mine were slipping open a few teeth under load when running up steeps in cx race.
    Super easy to replace and instructions and torx screw driver included.

    Boa Technology - Repair Center

    Nice that you can also replace the treads on the sole on the s-works shoes. I replaced the treads at the same time as the BOAs. they are like new again.

  26. #26
    mtbr member
    Reputation: WR304's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Posts
    5,064

    Light Shoes? (Initial Review of Shimano XC51 MTB Shoes)

    Quote Originally Posted by RS VR6 View Post
    For me its the left foot. The protruding bone behind the pinky toe. Its fine when pedaling...but once I start descending and the trail starts to get rough...there is a ton of pressure in that area. The first thing I want to do when I get back to the car is take off the shoe.

    I've tried riding with the BOA loose and my feet feel like they are going to come out of the shoe. The BOA feels like its either too tight or too loose. When the shoes were brand new...I could not get my feet into the shoe. I had to completely undo the BOA strap...and I don't have wide feet. Eventually they loosened up. Initially the ankle protector part cut into my ankle...but that thankfully softened up. After about 6 months...I gave up and bought another pair of shoes. IMO...the shoe upper is just too hard.

    How thick are the silicone pads?

    I might try getting one of those shoe stretcher things and put in the left shoe. See if that'll make a difference.

    This is just my experience with the shoes. I really want to like them and have had good experiences with all my shoes from Specialized.
    It sounds like the S-Works Trail shoes are a little too narrow, and possibly too deep allowing your left foot to move.

    Something that might work would be a "tailor's bunion" gel pad covering the area behind your little toe on the left foot where the shoe rubs.

    http://www.silipos.com/Products/Orth...-Bunion-Shield

    That would stop the shoe and sock rubbing directly on your foot. The gel pads are around 3mm thick but very soft and flexible.

Similar Threads

  1. Tiebao MTB Shoes Review
    By ian0789 in forum Apparel and Protection
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 12-20-2016, 05:55 AM
  2. Replies: 4
    Last Post: 09-27-2014, 06:42 PM
  3. Light Flat Shoes
    By OFFcourse in forum Apparel and Protection
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 12-29-2012, 04:37 PM
  4. Shimano AM-41 Initial Review
    By mudpuppy in forum All Mountain
    Replies: 12
    Last Post: 05-08-2012, 10:04 AM
  5. Good value on light, stiff shoes?
    By dcubed in forum Apparel and Protection
    Replies: 5
    Last Post: 03-07-2012, 01:16 PM

Members who have read this thread: 2

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

THE SITE

ABOUT MTBR

VISIT US AT

© Copyright 2020 VerticalScope Inc. All rights reserved.