Add a Review Spider 8.1 Desert MultiCam HPi


  • The best we have used!
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    By Joe 19/03/2012

    Background

    We have been using these boots now since they were first released. I first became aware of them via friends who were involved in the development of them. It was on this basis I decided to trial them in my company.

    I was dubious at the claims as, like most in the game. The usual rule is that light boots trade weight for support and protection, you don’t get both. Admittedly, boot technology has come a long way but this rule is a hard one to break.

    Now it seems that one boot maker is prepared to go all out and produce a boot that is exceedingly light weight and provides the support, protection and dependability that you can bet your life and your comrades’ lives on.

    That the boots are so successful is fantastic. The fact that many will be skeptical that light weight boots are a viable extended operations boot in harsh terrain is the reason I am taking time to write this review.

    To illustrate how well received the Spider boots are in my company, the only guys not using them are a few who have very wide feet and can not get a suitable fit. We are talking about less than 10 out of over 300 operators. Coincidently, they all use Magnum Sidewinders.

    The AO is Mostly North East Africa from Chad to Somalia up to the Med and parts of the Middle East. Most of the work is on foot carrying heavy loads. The terrain is mostly desert with some jungle/ swamp and even some alpine areas. Insertion can be by Air, Helo, boat or vehicle. Until now we have not been able to use just one boot, rather 2 or 3 types depending on the job at hand.

    An interesting trend is the distinct reduction in lower leg injuries and foot health problems since using the Spider.

    Construction and finish

    All seams are well made, flush and sit flat with no exposed threads or material to snag or fray. Glued/ bonded joist are continuous, even and again free of protrusion or visible defect. Eyelets are well secured to the boot and remain so after many, many hours of arduous use. All surfaces are non reflective and colour distribution is even despite material changes.

    The interior is very tightly finished and has no high points, seams protrusions, hard surfaces or loose components which may cause issues by moving around. Overall, a superb job.

    Fit

    The fit is very precise with the boot and sock combining to hold, support and cushion the foot. There is no sliding around, no pinching, flex is just right to allow free movement. The uppers are cut to contour very closely to the leg and when the laces are pulled up the boot feels like a slipper

    Support and protection

    These boots basically lock onto the lower leg and foot and quite simply always correctly support it regardless of load, terrain speed or whatever. Wet, dry, hot or cold it makes no difference.

    The design of the boot and the materials combine to offer very high degrees of protection from stone strike, impacts and sharp edges etc.

    Comfort

    This is where things are lifted to another level. Nothing else comes close. Nothing. The combination of light weight, breathability and heat control is only able to be fully appreciated by using the boot. Long hard tabs over desert in 55c temps and your feet stay cool, what’s more no sand or debris gets in to cramp up your foot room. A full submerging will see water get in but two important things happen. The first is due to the special treatment no water is absorbed into the material of the boot. This minimizes weight buildup. The second thing is the boots seem to pump the water out. After only about 20 paces or so 90% of the water has been evacuated. No more sodden, heavy boots. The boot also dries the foot out quite quickly due to the ventilation system.

    No matter how hard you push there are no hotspots, your feet stay cool and dry, there is no noticeable foot or lower leg fatigue and there are no pressure points. Blisters do not exist even first time on. Break in takes a couple of steps – literally.

    Fast roping

    We all know that heat and abrasion during fast roping kills boots. The special shaping and materials mean that heat is vastly reduced and wear is significantly less. Control on the rope is improved very noticeably.

    Para

    Due to the support and well chosen materials, jumping in is a breeze with these boots. If anything we have had less jump injuries since using them. Enough said.

    Swimming

    The boot is able to have fins pulled over it and holds them securely until time to remove them comes. Entering the water from a moving boat or a helicopter present no issues.

    Climbing

    These are clearly not a climbing boot. If you do find yourself in a situation where climbing is necessary they won’t let you down. The soles and ribbed surfaces are sticky and grippy, conforming to the going for good hold, allowing aggressive use in climbing situations. You can even fit crampons over them and use them comfortably and effectively.

    Running

    You will not find any issues when running. Generally these boots are better than many running shoes.

    Grip

    Wet or slippery surfaces, slime, long wet grass, loose dry clay powder – whatever you will not be wanting for grip on terra firma. I know of no other boot offering better slip resistance and grip over such a wide range of conditions.

    Waterproofness

    These boots are not water proof and are not sold as waterproof. They will keep your feet dry as long as you do not full submerge them. They will dry out extremely fast and will not carry water more than a few paces.

    Cool weather

    No issues in cooler weather to report. The foot is kept warm and comfortable even during inactivity.

    Durability

    We have had no failures of seams, bonding or materials. That is across the board, in all conditions. In very sharp rock, some chipping of the sole is inevitable but it is minor and irrelevant.

    Some surface fraying and obviously surface wear occurs. The boot wears very evenly with no one component retiring early. Overall life is comparable to any high end boot.

    Care

    Just rinse them, wipe and let them dry. It is that easy, the treatment given means that little sticks to the boot and that which does is easy to remove.

    Issues

    The lace pocket on the tongue can create a pressure point but seems to depend on the individual user. Laces can be tricky to grip. The very snug upper means it is uncomfortable to fit a boot knife so perhaps a pocket or other method could be found for this. Getting gaiters to stay in place can be tricky at times and some way of hooking then around the sides would be useful. Putting ribbing up the heel as done on the toes would improve the climbing abilities of the boot.

    Value

    For our use value is a bit of a distraction. I am happy to bet my life and the lives of my guys on them. That is a value above dollar terms. The price for these boots is ultimately extremely good value as they are perhaps the best all round, high performance boot you can get.

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Spider 8.1 Desert MultiCam HPi

Spider 8.1 Desert MultiCam HPi


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Durability

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Fit

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Comfort

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Подходит для использования

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Would you recommend this product?

  • 90% of people recommended this product

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