Having used the Oxtar TCS Sport Boots for about 8 years now, I think its time to retire them. And, review them, before I send them away. In this case, long term review has been redefined, since you’ll see as you go further that I’ve used the boot till it, literally, fell apart.
I ordered this boot in November 2005 from MotorcycleGear.com. (If you have not seen that post I created long back when I got the Oxtar TCS boots, I would suggest that you read that first and then come back to this.) It was carried back for me by a good friend, and I still remember the pleasure of finally owning a pair of motorcycling boots. It had never been a priority till then. Before I let them go, I would like to review how the boots worked for me over the last few years. Bought primarily for racing, this boot has been with me on amazing journeys both on and off the road.
The construction quality of the boot has protected my foot more than once over the last few years. The skeletal structure of the boot is such that it forms a nice tough barrier over which I have had my motorcycles fall and trap my foot. But for some muscle pain I’ve gotten away with some big crashes.
The leather in itself survived pretty much anything I threw at it and from the pictures you’ll see that the it’s been put through a lot. The toe area is scuffed from all the off-roading.
Anyone who’s used Oxtars will know of the way these boots squeak. If you not keep all the TCS joints well oiled, the boot squeaks away as you walk. I got so used to the squeaking that I stopped noticing it altogether and hence, stopped oiling the joints. But, anyone new in the group does point it out. It’s a small price to pay for TCS and I really liked that feature over the years.
The boots have been quite comfortable as long as you are riding a bike where you’re foot is below you or behind. During the racing days, this made it ideal and gave perfect comfort while riding any of the track oriented motorcycles. Off the bike, the shoe is relatively comfortable. Not for walking large distances, but not so uncomfortable to make you want to get out of it while hanging around at one of the rest stops on the ride.
The TCS which is great at keeping things together, do not allow for too much movement on a bike like my Thunderbird, where the foot is in a slightly forward position. Over the years, I got used to it and since I ride with the foot in a slightly different position, this has not been too much of a problem. But, its not ideal for motorcycles with forward pegs.
Easy in Easy Out
The full length zipper opens the top of the boot well enough to remove it quickly. The velcro that encloses the zip has worked well over the years not losing it ‘stickyness’. Given the fact that this does not have an enclosing flap inside, like some of the fully waterproof boots, wearing the boot and removing it is very easy.
Decent weather protection overall. Your foot will get wet, especially in the torrential rain that we get here in India. As you can see in the picture alongside, the boot does not have a waterproofing flap inside the zipper, so water does come in while doing water crossings. But, for what the boot is meant for, it does a really good job. Though its not a fully waterproof boot, the quality of the interiors and exteriors of the boot have not fallen apart, due to weather.
The biggest downside of the Oxtar TCS Sport boots, is the location of the gear shift patch on your left foot. It never felt like it was in the right position, for any of the motorcycles that I rode. Over the years, this patch started falling apart, mainly due to the contact area of the shifter with the boot being at the joint. This got really exaggerated while in the Himalayas last year and I had to run to a cobbler in village Karu, on outskirts of Leh to get my boot stitched. But, this was after years of hard riding, so again, I am just nit picking.
If you are planning on using this boot outside the race track in real world conditions with the slush and dirt of India, the soles are going to suffer. They will wear out quicker than the rest of the boot and give you limited grip. When they are on the pegs and on tarmac, they work well.
I paid about 200 USD for the Oxtar TCS Sport boots and it lasted me about 8 years of riding. The first 5 were pretty hard riding and the last 3 have been relatively milder. So, at an average cost per year, this is about 25USD a year, which is just amazingly great value for money.
I bought extra toe sliders, when I bought the boot. I did not opt for the titanium toe sliders, which were supposed to give out sparks as you went around corners, but the regular ones. I’ll leave all the fireworks to Oxtars of Troy Bayliss, thank you.
Currently the shop I bought my shoes at sells comparable TCX S Race boots at $339. Everything gets more expensive with time.
Oxtar TCS Sport Boots – Buy again?
I have expected the boot to have come apart more than once during its time with me. I have been amazed time and again about how its survived and saved my feet in the process.
Buy again? A big yes.
Don’t go searching for new Oxtars. Oxtar is what TCX Boots used to be known as, till they got sued by Alpinestars.
Their current website is at http://www.tcxboots.com/