Winter shoes/boots

Sibreen

Maximum Pace
Jul 23, 2010
565
244
63
Hanno, Saitama
#1
So, it was 5C last night in Hanno and a little colder 600m up, and my shoes + shoe covers combo is no longer working. There was this thread a couple of years ago: https://tokyocycle.com/bbs/threads/winter-shoes-boots.3066/

The Shimano MW81s mentioned are about 16000yen on Wiggle (quite a rise from the 12000yen quoted in the thread, no doubt due to the weakened yen) - does anyone have any other (cheaper) recommendations?

For those that have the MW81s, or the previous incarnations of them: how low a temperature were they comfortable in? Was a single pair of socks sufficient, or did you wear multiple socks, hot packs, + shoe covers?
 

theBlob

Bokeh master
Sep 28, 2011
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#2
I bought some BBS winter shoe covers last year (up to ankle), and used them all winter. They are like wetsuit material and kept my feet toasty. Cheap too, they were about 3000Y from wiggle.
I ride each morning from about 5:45 so temps were down to below zero.
Oh if you decide to get these get a size a bit smaller than you think you might need. mine could be more snug
 

Musashi13

Maximum Pace
Aug 27, 2012
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Ichikawa, Chiba
#3
I've heard it's better to layer the outside rather than the in. Two or more pairs of socks could lead to constriction whereas a thin waterproof overshoe on top of a winter warm shoe cover holds in the heat, keeps the wind away, and doesn't lead to blood flow issues.
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#4
Options:

PI winter covers. They have darn decent insulation.
1 or 2 size larger shoe, the use a felt insole with wool socks. Enuff space to pack a hot kaido on top.
Northwave winter shoes. I have these and use felt insole. Awesome.
Embrocation. A little capsicum cream on the feet helps to increase surface circulation and keeps the toes a little warmer.
Emergency. Plastic conbini sacks over your feet and inside the shoes.
 

GrantT

Maximum Pace
Oct 2, 2012
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Setagaya
#5
I bought some BBS winter shoe covers last year (up to ankle), and used them all winter. They are like wetsuit material and kept my feet toasty. Cheap too, they were about 3000Y from wiggle.
I ride each morning from about 5:45 so temps were down to below zero.
Oh if you decide to get these get a size a bit smaller than you think you might need. mine could be more snug
Sound perfect for keeping our poor toesies warm. Can you post a link from Wiggle? Can't seem to find them on the site.
 
Jul 2, 2012
64
7
28
asagaya
#6
Planet X has a decent winter bundle on sale at the moment. Gloves, a hat, arm earners and socks all for about 15quid. I've bagged myself one of them and will give it a test this weekend. Even if they aren't that great at worst you'll have some backups.


Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

Sibreen

Maximum Pace
Jul 23, 2010
565
244
63
Hanno, Saitama
#11
@theBlob and stanc:
What shoes are you guys wearing under your shoecovers? And, do your feet get cold in general?
I get cold feet easily anyway (just walking around the house, for example). I bought some neoprene shoecovers and they work ok but the wind comes in through the cleat holes. Yesterday's temperatures were too cold for me with this set up. I was ok until the first descent, but that sucked all the warmth out of me for the rest of the ride.

@ jackonaboardman
Looking forward to a review!
 

Gunjira

Maximum Pace
Oct 2, 2009
1,003
176
83
Tokyo
#12
I usually switch to SPD type pedals in winter and the mw81. Below zero I slip in kairo above the toes.

I also have every type of shoe cover and the difference in cold resistance between brands seems marginal. Of course fleece lined neoprene is strongest. Yet I found the small neoprene cover that only covers the tip of the shoe to work surprisingly well when things are not too cold.

For long rides, I use merino socks, even in summer.
If the air from the holes around the cleat bothers you and the position is dialed in, you can use silicon or shoe goo to close the gaps.
 
Likes: Musashi13

stanc

Maximum Pace
Sep 4, 2011
255
41
58
Brighton
#13
@theBlob and stanc:
What shoes are you guys wearing under your shoecovers? And, do your feet get cold in general?
I get cold feet easily anyway (just walking around the house, for example).
I'm wearing what were my best shoes this time last year. I dont feel the cold too much & since breaking my hip I wont ride when it's icy so they dont have to deal with the worst of the temperatures.
 

Yamabushi

Maximum Pace
Jun 1, 2010
2,335
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1,083
Tokyo (Nezu)
fudoushin.com
#14
Yes shoe covers are OK.... Until you get a decent pair of winter shoes
And wonder Why on earth didn't I buy them sooner!
Yes, yes, yes!! IMHO, shoe covers serve a purpose, but are a poor substitute for proper winter cycling shoes! I've lost track but this will be either my 3rd or 4th season with my Shimano SH-RW80's. Beyond Shimano, I would definitely also consider Northwave's and Sidi's winter shoes.
 

theBlob

Bokeh master
Sep 28, 2011
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#15
I have good circulation so my feet don't get too cold generally. (I'm still just on toe covers) but last year to counter the wind factor getting through the holes I wore the toe covers over the shoe covers. It just compressed any air gaps with the design of bootie and made everything snug.

I'm sure winter shoes are great but are they going to cut it alone on those February pre dawn mornings?
 

GSAstuto

Maximum Pace
Oct 11, 2009
945
242
103
tokyo
www.roadfixie.com
#19
@Travis - I wore my Northwaves w/wool socks and no issues for warmth - even totally sodden - but that WAS a problem as I'd soaked up about 500ml water PER SHOE! @Sibreen - check out the felt insoles at Tokyu Hands, this pretty much solved my cold soles and toes issue. Even with the Northwaves I use felt insole. For Taiwan I wore my Bonts with lightweight wool sock (Bicycle Line) and used Pearl Izumi PU shoe covers. No rain or cold issues, but the time at low temps (below 5) was pretty short. For ultra cold I stick the hot kairo pads directly on top of my feet (close to the toes as possible).
 

Sibreen

Maximum Pace
Jul 23, 2010
565
244
63
Hanno, Saitama
#20
Thanks, everyone, for the replies.
Due to all the positive reviews I think I'm going to take the plunge and splash out on some winter Shimanos. I'm heading back to the UK for Christmas so will pick up a pair from Wiggle then to avoid possible import charges. In the meantime will check out the felt insoles, plug up the cleat holes, and look for some thick woolen socks.

I'm guessing that if I layer up enough I can keep my legs and upper body reasonably warm - which leaves me needing some gloves..