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Does anybody understand the flex ratings on ski boots?

 Poster: A snowHead
Poster: A snowHead
I don't and I'd like to as I will need to buy some new boots soon as my old ones have disintegrated inside. I spread little bits of foam all round Les Arcs! And skiing was like trying to steer a Land Rover.
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 Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Obviously A snowHead isn't a real person
Chris Bish, apologies if this is all stuff you already know - information on "flex ratings" is not easy to find.
I tried the Salomon site: nothing! But these 2 sites - netsweat.com and altrec.com - do allow some information to be teased out:
1. Flex rating is actually a stiffness rating
2. The maximum score is 120
3. Crossmax 10 Ski Boot has a score of 120!
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 Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Well, the person's real but it's just a made up name, see?
Chris Bish, there is no standard across the board - each manufacturer uses their own settings, e.g. my Technica Icon Alu Comp boots have a flex rating of 90 (I think). They are comparable to the Salomon Pro model, which is considerable stiffer than the Crossmax 10.

The thing to do is to try boots, find the ones that fit the best, and are stiff enough to support you, yet soft enough that you can flex them. The flex rating means nothing!
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Jonpim, and Wear The Fox Hat, thanks to both of you. I thought I was stupid for not knowing!

Generally speaking, does the bigger number suggest the stiffer and more advanced boot?
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 Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Anyway, snowHeads is much more fun if you do.
Chris Bish, generally, yes, but only within a model range.
As I said earlier, go for fit first, then flex.
Don't look at the flex numbers! (unless you happen to be suffering a mid-life crisis, and need the boots to go with your recently purchased red sports car)
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Historically, this issue has always been confused by the influence of temperature, which can make the flex of a boot so different on the snow to what it is in the shop.

Therefore, always insist that the ski shop puts boots in a freezer for an hour or two before trying them on (joking).

Seriously, though, the real problem is the inherent difficulty of building a viable flex adjustment into a four-clip boot. The Salomon SX91 rear-entry boot (vintage 1984), and its successors, has never been surpassed for flex control - and was also a very good boot to ski in (and walk in).

Because of the temperature issue, I doubt if manufacturers could ever agree a viable international standard for this, but it would be nice to see ISO to tackle the issue if they haven't done so to date.
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 Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
Then you can post your own questions or snow reports...
David, I'll bet you've still got your old rear-entry boots. Flex is a matter of personal taste, I now prefer to use boots with a much greater degree of flex, easier to use etc. I don't believe it's necessary to use very stiff boots unless you are racing. I used to use foam fitted Dynafit 3Fs and even instructed in them, but now I wouldn't want anything that stiff, thanks. Although one of my sons destroyed a pair of Technica Icons in a season, maybe it was because they were too stiff.
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 After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
After all it is free Go on u know u want to!
My old boots had a switch for "ski hard" or "ski soft", which presumably affected the flexing in some way.

I always set them to "ski hard" because it always seemed pretty hard to me!

Punter or what!??? Madeye-Smiley

So my new boots will just have to be comfortable and I'm not to worry about the numbers then.........
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You'll get to see more forums and be part of the best ski club on the net.
BTW Wear The Fox Hat, I am too old for a mid-life crisis unless I'm going to live to 110!

I was rather taken with PG's lime-green numbers, or is that getting girly!
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 Ski the Net with snowHeads
Ski the Net with snowHeads
Armed with this reassurance, I went and bought some new boots today. It rained all day and my cricket match was off so I had some unexpected time.

I sttled for some Heads with a flex rating of 5 so it's a good job I knew it was meaningless! Thanks.

I got the full heat fitting custom insole job and very nice too. What I'm most impressed with is that these boots are realy narrow at the back and grip my ankles at the back so tightly they feel really secure. I think they will ski really well. Maybe if it rains next Saturady too I'll go and try them out at Castleford.
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