One of the most important criteria when choosing the right
set of snowboard boots is fit. Your boots must be snug and
comfortable while you are riding. Too loose and you'll
experience the dreaded heel lift where you heel lifts up
from inside your boots instead of your board as you try
to lean towards your toe edge.
So how do you make sure your boots are as snug as they can be?
Many experienced riders have their boots cranked down really
tight to get a better feel for the board and then re-tighten their
laces a couple of times during the day.
You could also try experimenting with different combinations of
socks by either wearing a thicker pair or layering them.
Or you could get a pair of boots which come with heat-moldable
inner liners which is, of course, what this article is about.
What They Are
Heat-moldable liners sit on the inside of your boot so that
they will fit perfectly according to the shape of your foot.
They are made from a foam material which will be pliable
when they are heated.
The process of heating up the liner and fitting them for you
is usually done at the retailer's shop after you purchase
Do It Yourself
There may be several reasons why you may want or have to heat
your moldable liners yourself. This could be because
your retailer does not have the necessary equipment,
if you purchased your boots via mail-order or
if you just need to re-mold them to make them more comfortable.
Here's how you can go about doing it yourself.
Preheat a convection over to about 180F. Or a clothes dryer might also
do the trick.
Take the footbet out of the liners and the liners out of the boot and place
them into the oven about five minutes apart so that you can fit one
while heating the other.
Wear a thin pair of socks tightly over your feet and toe-cap
(if you have one, see section below). Take the first liner out
and put it into its boot. Slide your foot into the boot and
stomp down on it before strapping up nice and tight.
Repeat with the other liner. Stand in your snowboard stance
and then walk around in them for about fifteen minutes while they cool down.
You may like to have a little bit of space for your toes to wiggle around
in inside your boot to prevent them from feeling overly tight.
For this reason, many riders prefer to wear toe-caps before
molding their liners.
You can use pretty make a toe-cap out of anything which will give
you some space inside your boot e.g. by using a thin sock or some
cloth to wrap around your toes while you step into the warm liners
to mold them.
Keep in mind that there is a limit to the number of times you should
re-mold them as the amount of expansion with each attempt decreases to
the point where they may become too thin. You should probably be
able to get about four to six decent moldings depending on the quality
of the material.