TCX Ladies Vintage Boots
3rd September 2018
£159.95 | Waterproof | Biker boots | Leather
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These are not the first pair of TCX boots that in recent years we've tested. Back in June 2017 we reviewed the Hero Boots which we were broadly impressed with—and they're still being road-tested and are giving good daily service.
However, at around £170 (recommend retail price), the Heroes ain't cheap. But then, quality never is, and it's clear that these TCX Ladies Vintage Boots are built to exactly the same high standard.
The construction, we're advised, is full grain leather with a waterproof lining. We've yet to test exactly how well these boots keep the H20 away. That requires long term usage—and we've had these only a few weeks. But we can tell you that the Hero boots certainly lived up to their claim, and even repeatedly wading in ankle deep sea water didn't let the brine through to our socks. Therefore, we haven't any reason to suppose that these ladies boots will fare any worse.
The heel and toe areas are reinforced without being "clumpy", and there are ankle inserts to help protect those essential bony lumps should you take a spill.
The soles are rubber, and they're currently still squeaking on highly polished floors—which is a feature we can live without. But these boots are yet to wear in properly, and that could take some time. Tip: some folk recommend wiping hair conditioner on the soles [Seriously? - Ed]. And some recommend that you simply reach for the sandpaper. However, unless you're walking long yards of silent linoleum, it ain't a problem. Time and road grit, we hope, will sort it out.
For serious, heavy-duty, all day, long-distance biking, these boots are not ideal. The heels are too high, the shin protection is too low and too thin, and the insteps have no padding at all. But they're not designed for international touring. These boots would, rather, suit riders looking for stylish, quality, waterproof protection on those more local jaunts and casual ride outs, or even urban commutes.
The side zip closure feels every bit as good as it does on the aforementioned Hero boots, and there's a waterproof folding flap on the inside to prevent any sly water ingress. The ankle clasp is more decorative than practical. And there's some kind of "Torsion Control System" at work which, as we understand it, allows free movement of the muscles and joints in your feet, but resists unnatural twisting and stretching.
Another small but mentionable feature of these boots is the removable gear shift pad. This is a little elasticated doo-dah (image immediately above) that you slip on either foot to prevent the motorcycle gear lever wearing a groove on your toe. The pad slips on okay, and it seems reasonably secure in usage. However, you can't walk around with it in place. If you try it, you'll quickly wear out the elastic. Consequently, you'll want to remove the pad after each and every ride. But it's likely to be wet and/or dirty, and you won't want to put it in your pocket.
So what do you do with it? Answer: just use your imagination. But we suspect that most girls will quickly ditch this accessory and let natural wear and tear take its course. And if our Hero boots are anything to go by, they just look better and better the older they get.
Conclusion? These Ladies Vintage Boots feel very solid, stylish, well made and practical for everyday/general use. They're a long way from flashy, we're pleased to say, and we can't imagine them falling to pieces in a hurry.
TCX is a well respected manufacturer that stands by—and stands in—its products. And we'll be standing in these for some time to come and will report any deficiencies.
The recommended retail price is a hefty £159.95. And as ever, we've seen them discounted in the usual places. But if you want cheap (and nasty), try Shoe Zone. Of all the boots in the ladies boots range, we like the look of these best.
We'll come back to this review as and when we've got anything else worth reporting.
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