TCX Hero Motorcycle Boots
30th May 2017
Retro | Leather | Waterproof | CE approved
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You always know which bike in the garage is your favourite. It's the one you most often straddle. Sure, your eyes might tell you that your first love is the Vincent that you exercise maybe two or three times a year. When it's dry. And sunny. Etc. But your practical favourite—i.e. your real favourite—is the BSA Bantam that you ride half a dozen times a week regardless of the weather.
Same with footwear. Your eyes might fall on those Gucci loafers in finest alligator, but your everyday heart sees you slipping into those old clogs that you found in the loft when you bought the house. And that's how it is with these Italian made TCX Hero boots.
The feet don't lie.
But we must make a confession here. We didn't at first like various aspects of these boots; not when we saw the pictures and read the PR blurb that preceded them. Specifically the side zipper and the Velcro tab on the side. They offended our hoity-toity purist tastes. But that changed significantly when we actually picked up the boots and had a closer inspection.
They arrived a week or two ago and we've been busy strutting about in them in favour of the other footwear on the shelf. First impressions were good. Nice retro design. Well made. Not too heavy. Rich colour. Quality full grain leather. Flawless finish. And some useful features—specifically the quick entry/exit zipper flap, the protective padding above your heel tendons, the gear shift toe pads which features on both boots for left and right side changes, and the malleolar (ankle bone) protection.
The boot sole was at first a little slippery. However, we put that right in about twenty minutes with a ride to the beach and a walk along the sand. After that, the grip was fine.
General fit and comfort was also fine for us. And the light weight, when compared to our old steel toecap clodhoppers, is a welcome relief. If we had to complain about anything, the worst we could say is that the boots look too new.
Like new Levi jeans, footwear never looks really good until it's been worn in, ideally with a few minor scuffs here and there, and maybe a couple of oil stains. In fact, had the manufacturer put the boots on an artificial ageing machine thereby giving us six months of wear right out of the box, we wouldn't have complained. But as it is, we're gonna have to acquire those six months in the traditional manner.
Actually, there's one other minor niggle. These boots could use some little hooks or straps to ease them on. That's because the Hero's are a fairly slim and sculpted fit, and the newness means that you have to work your feet into them fairly carefully. We're not talking minutes, mind. Just an extra second or two. But once on and fastened, you don't even notice the boots until you stand in front of a mirror and admire them, which is the mark of good footwear. Fit and forget—and no doubt in time they'll slip on easily enough with just a poke and a wiggle. And remember, for quick entry/exit, there's side zipper tucked away behind a Velcro flap.
The colour of these boots is brown, and that's the only colour available. Meanwhile, there's a CE rating included, so you know the boots have been tested by the crash protection gurus and built up to a certain standard.
The laces are waxed and feel like they'll easily unfasten on the move, but they've held fine for us.
As for wet weather use, the boot liner is claimed to be both waterproof and breathable. For obvious reasons, we haven't yet conducted long term tests on that aspect. But they've certainly been splashed tested; actually we stood in a 4-inch bowl of water for a full five minutes to see just how good they are. And they stayed perfectly dry.
Consequently, we have faith that these boots will keep everything out but the most seriously determined water. TCX, after all, has a great reputation as a high quality boot engineering firm—and we don't lightly use the word "engineering".
The best part of these boots is, for us, the fact that you can wear them on the bike and get decent—albeit more casual—protection, and then you can park up and tramp down the high street without feeling overdressed.
The recommended retail price of these boots is £170. And either you understand the true value of good footwear, or you don't. Tip: Don't be cheap at either end of your body, nor anywhere in between.
These TCX Hero boots are simply excellent. Talk to your local motorcycle clothing emporium or contact the importer Nevis Marketing.
Tell 'em Sump sent ya.
UPDATE: We've been wearing these boots for a couple of months, and it's worth adding a few points. The first thing to mention is that they squeak, and it's irritating. In the street it's no problem. But tread a tiled floor or similar, and you'll start hearing mice. Also, the leather does tend to scuff up very easily. That doesn't both us too much. We're not the tidiest folk in the world. But you can expect to develop an aged look very quickly if that's your style. Lastly, the laces are already fraying. Nothing terrible, but we'd expect better for boots at this price. Beyond that, they're very comfortable, they feel secure, and they've stayed watertight. Would we buy another pair? Probably not at this price.
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