Alpina 1600 BC

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ᚠᚨᚱ ᚾᛟᚱᚦ ᛊᚲᛁᛖᚱ
Posts: 100
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2020 6:37 pm
Location: Alaska, Mat-Su Burough
Ski style: Mixed xcountry offtrack/bc
Favorite Skis: Asnes NATO BC so far
Favorite boots: Still searching

Alpina 1600 BC

Post by ᚠᚨᚱ ᚾᛟᚱᚦ ᛊᚲᛁᛖᚱ » Mon Jan 11, 2021 11:04 pm

While searching for boots to complete my ski package I stumbled across the Alpina 1600 on Alpina's website. I then searched the web for it and found a review on this forum. viewtopic.php?f=19&t=2943&hilit=Alpina+1600
I have never worn the Alaskas (the benchmark for XC BC boots?)as a comparison so my impressions will be pretty general.
20210111_171605.jpg
The sole is fairly stiff, thus they are a bit clunky to walk around in. They seem fairly resistant to twisting and the lower part of the boot keeps the foot firmly in place.
I generally wear wide size boots and did not find that these were too narrow.
Personally, I prefer smooth leather to suede for harsh use. This was one of the main features that drew my attention.
They are insulated but do not have a membrane. My feet tend to sweat pretty heavily and I have found that boots without membrane keep my feet more dry and therefore more warm. Depending on how you ski the lack of a membrane could be a deal breaker.
When I received these boots I thought that maybe Alpina was being deceptive as they did not actually look like real leather.
20210111_171708.jpg
I was curious what parts of the boots were actually real leather as they claimed. I reached out to them and received this response:
20210111_175146.jpg
So far I have only been on one short tour with these boots at about 32° F so I can't judge how warm they are yet. They did not feel extremely stiff, but gave a good secure feeling while climbing hills and over logs. They also felt like they had plenty of power to control my excursion 88s while descending.

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ᚠᚨᚱ ᚾᛟᚱᚦ ᛊᚲᛁᛖᚱ
Posts: 100
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2020 6:37 pm
Location: Alaska, Mat-Su Burough
Ski style: Mixed xcountry offtrack/bc
Favorite Skis: Asnes NATO BC so far
Favorite boots: Still searching

Re: Alpina 1600 BC

Post by ᚠᚨᚱ ᚾᛟᚱᚦ ᛊᚲᛁᛖᚱ » Thu May 06, 2021 5:13 pm

After a full season of use I can say these boots were pretty good.
20210506_122237.jpg
They could use better insoles, and I'm still not really sold on the PU coating that Alpina applied to the outside. It does work to keep the leather more dry, but it also limits the effectiveness of waterproofing treatments. The coating has been worn through in a couple places and I'll have to touch it up periodically with some shoe polish to protect the leather.
20210506_122407.jpg
The boots softened up a bit but still provide pretty firm ankle support. In my opinion they are a little stiff in the BOF so you have to focus somewhat to avoid rear foot tippy toes when doing tele turns.
Another issue that was not helped by the PU coating was crease control. viewtopic.php?f=1&t=3495&hilit=Crease+control
The PU coating made it nearly impossible to 'train' the leather. If you're new to Nordic BC skiing you'll likely encounter an incident or two of sudden deceleration early on. This happened to me almost immediately, causing me to get "tossed over the handle bars." This created a crease in my left boot right across the 2nd knuckle on my big toe, which is can be pretty uncomfortable at time. On my right boot the crease formed further back and doesn't cause any problems.
20210506_122456.jpg
I almost think it would be an idea going forward to pre-crease new boots where I want the crease to form.
The only other issue I noted is that some stitching seems to be coming loose on the heel.
20210506_122335.jpg



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lilcliffy
Posts: 3077
Joined: Thu Jan 01, 2015 7:20 pm
Location: Stanley, New Brunswick, Canada
Ski style: Nordic backcountry touring
Favorite Skis: Asnes Ingstad BC; Asnes Gamme 54 BC; Asnes Storetind Carbon; Madshus Annum; Asnes Comabt Nato
Favorite boots: Alfa Guard Advance BC; Alpina Alaska BC; Crispi Svartisen BC; Scarpa T4
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Re: Alpina 1600 BC

Post by lilcliffy » Sat May 08, 2021 11:31 am

Thank you for the update and information on this boot!

From the photos and your description of the boot- they look exactly the same as the boot I investigated a number of years ago. My friend did end up ordering a pair. They don't appear to have been updated. The coating on top of the leather is major design flaw in my opinion- leather needs regaular TLC, which cannot be done with that coating.

Sucky about the stitching.

The problems you have with the crease are much harder to resolve when you cannot properly treat and train the leather- due to that coating. What's the point in a leather boot if you cannot treat the leather and get a custom fit?!?

BTW- those boots do have a waterproof liner- the "Alpitex" label on the boot confirms it. "Alpitex" is Alpina's own waterproof-breathable liner. It is excellent. I certainly think it is as good as GTX- at least it is in a boot liner.
Gareth
Cross-country AND down-hill skiing in the backcountry.
Unashamed to be a "cross-country type" and love skiing down-hill.



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ᚠᚨᚱ ᚾᛟᚱᚦ ᛊᚲᛁᛖᚱ
Posts: 100
Joined: Tue Dec 29, 2020 6:37 pm
Location: Alaska, Mat-Su Burough
Ski style: Mixed xcountry offtrack/bc
Favorite Skis: Asnes NATO BC so far
Favorite boots: Still searching

Re: Alpina 1600 BC

Post by ᚠᚨᚱ ᚾᛟᚱᚦ ᛊᚲᛁᛖᚱ » Sat May 08, 2021 12:25 pm

lilcliffy wrote:
Sat May 08, 2021 11:31 am
BTW- those boots do have a waterproof liner- the "Alpitex" label on the boot confirms it. "Alpitex" is Alpina's own waterproof-breathable liner. It is excellent. I certainly think it is as good as GTX- at least it is in a boot liner.
Gareth
Good to know. I had thought that was their brand label for the insulation they use. It did work well (the liner). My feet stayed fairly dry, so they must breath reasonably well. I was trying to figure out what features were missing to justify the lower price tag on these compared to the Alaska. Maybe it's just a matter of demand.



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