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Speed Skating Forum Most of the discussions in this forum will be about inline speed skating but discussions about ice speed skating and quad roller speed skating are also welcome.

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Old April 27th, 2017, 07:21 AM   #1
Krulle
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Default Help on new skates, stopped skating for 13 years

Hi Guys/Girls

I plan to sport more, and would like to take up speed skating again. In a recreational form, mainly on the road. The plan is to do a weekly ride of 20-30km (13-20 miles). As it is 14 years ago that I skated, I would like to use your advice for buying new race skates.

FYI, I only started speed skating at the age of 14, so my technique has never been flawless. I am 1,84m tall (about 6 feet) and weighing 88kg (194 pounds).
Please donít spare me the technical details! These days I look at it from a mechanical engineering perspective, unlike 15 years ago.

Some Questions:

Wheel size: was thinking of 4x110mm, but start first with 100mm in a 110mm frame to ease the transition. What do you suggest?
Wheel hardness: for 80mm I would select 81-82A harness for grip and comfort, is this different with larger wheels? Probably 110mm is more comfortable already by nature.
Frames: I used to go for 7000 series frames; as an engineer I think 6000 series frames are less than 1% slower, so no problem for recreational use. Are there other drawbacks (apart from durability)?
2 point vs 3 point: I think that grip and comfort are better on 2 point, so no need for 3 point for me I guess?
Boots: What are the best affordable boots these days? They need to be very heat moldable since he Fibula joint at my ankle is more to the back of my foot compared to my Tibia joint (probably 1Ē), this gave me troubles in the past with standard heat moldable boots (donít recall the brand). Boot height not low please, but lower that e.g. bont Semi racer.

Are there things that I am overlooking?
Would you have suggestions for a set? I want to spend max USD500.

Last skates (bought in 2000, last used them in 2003)
Boots: custom made Bont (similar to Z boot, not top end, not low end), w/o buckle
Frames: Boen short 5x80mm in 7000 series aluminum
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Old April 27th, 2017, 12:24 PM   #2
spdkls
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Wheel size: either 4x110 or 3x125. These are the best choices.

Wheel hardness: anything 85 to 88 for road depending on the surface. Every wheel now is pretty much banded, so they feel harder than they used to.

Frames: Nobody makes bad frames anymore. Yes there are 6000 and 7000 but with the manufacturing tech, they are all pretty stiff. It's pretty much a personal preference. 3 point is a dead technology. Unless you want the new PS Trinity, but you would have to buy their boot/frame combo.

Boots: This is the toughest one to answer. If you have bad feet. You will need a custom...Period. If not, then you have Simmons Rush(Simmons-Rana), Pinnacle Stock(Jimmie B), City Run(Bob Easton), Mota(Julie Brandt Glass), Atom(Gypsy Lucas), Powerslide. Not a big Bont fan(personal preference). They just didn't build me a good boot. Most of the above make customs as well. I have Pinnacle Custom and love them.

$500 max on a full won't get far anymore in this sport. Mota or Atom may be your best bet. City Run might have something close to that price.
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Old April 27th, 2017, 03:50 PM   #3
Krulle
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thank you, learnt already from this.

Most of the boot brands are not available in Belgium or the Netherlands.
What you find here the most is: Bont, Powerslide, Cado Motus (never heard of them), Luigino (never heard of them), Evo (never heard of them), Maple (inspired by LT ice skating) , Evo (never heard of them), Raps (inspired by Ice skating, saw bad things from these guys), Viking (inspired by LT ice skating), Mariani (top end), Icon (never heard of them)
I was happy with my Bont boots, but did not yet try many other brands.

for the price, I can find e.g.
- bont jet black with a 6061 4x110 for EUR395
- bont Z with a 6061 4x110 for EUR485
- powerslide infinity for EUR360
- powerslide double xx for EUR450
- powerslide vision for EUR450
- luigino strut with a striker frame 4x110 for EUR400

I know it is not a dream budget (and only half of the cost of my last skates), but it is not that I will use them intensively

Found a store that does Simmons, beautiful stuff, but out of my budget.
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Old April 27th, 2017, 05:32 PM   #4
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Buy 2-point boots and frames. 3-point is a Bont only thing and is dying. Also, 3pt can't be used with 125 stuff.

As for boots, Bont makes a quality product but they are not for everybody. The Z is a lower rise boot so probably not what you want (but it is a nice boot). I know a lot of people that skate on the Jet and like it. They will fit you well if you have lower arches and slightly narrow feet. Their sizing wizard works pretty well so give it a shot. I recommend the Jet for your ankle problem since the ankle area is very heat moldable.

My personal opinion is to stay away from the Luigino Striker frames. I do know people who like the Strut boot and have been happy with it. Again, fit better on slightly narrow feet. They are not built on the old Verducci last anymore.

The Powerslide stuff has gone down hill lately (in my opinion). I can't recommend them.

As far as wheel hardness, I personally like 84-85a for general use on trails and roads. This applies to 110's and 100's.
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Old June 22nd, 2017, 07:27 AM   #5
Krulle
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bought a set of Bont: Bont Jet + 6061 13.2" (4x110mm frame) + wheels + bearings ... they arrived yesterday

They have been delivered to the wrong address, and they delivered 110mm wheels instead of 100mm wheels, but that is a mistake of the store.


Boot: was impressed by the finishing and how light they are. And that for entry level boots. I would put the mounting slots in the other direction.
They hurt on the places that I expected, will heat mold them tonight

Frame: really good looking with that gun metal finish color. The finishing is perfect on these. They are a little soft, but OK, they are 6061. Performance is not an issue for me, and they will be more comfortable.

Wheels: They came with 110mm G14 wheels 84A. The 84A is a little hard for the roads in my region. I don't think I my feet will last for an hour on them. So I will look for softer wheels, and 100mm to train my ankles. On performance I have no clue, since I've never driven banded wheels.

Bearings: Delivered with Bont Abec 5. Many dislikes in this area for me:
- does not feel like Abec 5 (they feel sloppy)
- 2 sided metal shielding; feels like waste, you need to open them up anyway to clean, and you need to throw away the second shielding
- delivered with grease: understandable, but a hassle if you deliver with double shieldings
=> first thing you need to do is opening up all the bearings and clean them



Good: finishing of boot and frame

Bad: bearings

Don't understand: side-way mounting slots in both frame and boot. Difficult to position your frame well, I would go sideways on frame and slots in the length on the boots.
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Old June 22nd, 2017, 11:18 AM   #6
fierocious1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krulle View Post
bought a set of Bont: Bont Jet + 6061 13.2" (4x110mm frame) + wheels + bearings ... they arrived yesterday

They have been delivered to the wrong address, and they delivered 110mm wheels instead of 100mm wheels, but that is a mistake of the store.


Boot: was impressed by the finishing and how light they are. And that for entry level boots. I would put the mounting slots in the other direction.
They hurt on the places that I expected, will heat mold them tonight

Frame: really good looking with that gun metal finish color. The finishing is perfect on these. They are a little soft, but OK, they are 6061. Performance is not an issue for me, and they will be more comfortable.

Wheels: They came with 110mm G14 wheels 84A. The 84A is a little hard for the roads in my region. I don't think I my feet will last for an hour on them. So I will look for softer wheels, and 100mm to train my ankles. On performance I have no clue, since I've never driven banded wheels.

Bearings: Delivered with Bont Abec 5. Many dislikes in this area for me:
- does not feel like Abec 5 (they feel sloppy)
- 2 sided metal shielding; feels like waste, you need to open them up anyway to clean, and you need to throw away the second shielding
- delivered with grease: understandable, but a hassle if you deliver with double shieldings
=> first thing you need to do is opening up all the bearings and clean them



Good: finishing of boot and frame

Bad: bearings

Don't understand: side-way mounting slots in both frame and boot. Difficult to position your frame well, I would go sideways on frame and slots in the length on the boots.
bearings are no big deal. They affect your skating the least of all components.
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Old June 23rd, 2017, 08:31 AM   #7
Krulle
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heated them yesterday, all but one pressure points seem to be gone.

will try to remove the one with a hairdryer, and will need to start with taping that point I guess
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Old June 24th, 2017, 12:14 PM   #8
cass38a
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Those g14 wheels are $hithouse, I Harvard set and chucked them in the bin after only 20klm. It's not the 84a hardness that is the problem, it's just that they suck that bad.
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Old August 21st, 2017, 10:04 AM   #9
Krulle
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short update:

went back from 100mm to 110mm, and it feels like my ankles can cope with it now.

So I bought some new wheels: AM Wing Jets 83A. They feel a lot softer than the Bont G14 84A.

My personal impression (without putting a durometer on the wheels)

AM Wings Jets 83A feels more like 82A
Bont G14 84A feels more like 85A

Verdict on AM Wings vs Bont G14
My average speed went up with 1.6km on the same tour as always, and I did not skate for 2 weeks. During the skating, I thought I would be slower, only afterwards I saw I was faster.
And the comfort increase by the softer wheel is great as well.
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Old August 21st, 2017, 07:03 PM   #10
evilzzz
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as cass already previously warned, the G14 wheels are junk right out of the box. You would have done well to heed his advice and given yourself a much more pleasant skating experience from day 1. Durometer isn't really such a big deal, imo. You can skate well on anything between 83A and 88A provided the wheels are good quality. If they aren't, then it doesn't matter what durometer they are, they will suck to skate on.
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Old August 22nd, 2017, 11:42 AM   #11
Krulle
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Quote:
Originally Posted by evilzzz View Post
You would have done well to heed his advice and given yourself a much more pleasant skating experience from day 1.
They came in the package ...
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Old October 7th, 2017, 09:38 PM   #12
romekjagoda
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Krulle View Post
short update:

went back from 100mm to 110mm, and it feels like my ankles can cope with it now.
I don't mean to rain on your parade, but... what we think/feel about how we do stuff (form/technique) is often worlds apart from what it is in reality. Have someone record you skating on 110mm and review it or have it reviewed by someone knowledgeable about technique/inline coach. Obviously, I haven't seen you skating, but it may be a revealing experience and a so called reality check giving an impuls to reassess if you should not have started with the 100mm and stuck with them until you have the strenghth and technique to progress to bigger wheels.
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Old October 16th, 2017, 02:02 PM   #13
Krulle
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you are correct. How did I made this judgement:

- I feel that it takes less concentration to cope with the 110 mm than before I went to 100 mm
- my average speed is going up
- I feel less strain on my ankles than before I moved to 110 mm
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