Wrap-Up: Specialized Rime MTB Shoes- by Grannygear
I have been wearing the Specialized Rime MTB shoes now for pretty much every ride this early spring season and I think I have them pretty well figured out. We got them out of the box here and they looked like a pretty high end shoe with unique packaging, that being an ability to get off the bike and hike a bit over difficult terrain, rocks, etc, with a better potential for traction with the Vibram sole. As well, the Boa dial system on the top strap gives you a finer level of adjustability with the micro clicks. So, here we go with the thoughts so far.
- The stiffness index is rated as a 7.0 and that seems to be very adequate for pedaling purposes or, at least I have not felt any lack of foot support.
- The forefoot flex in the sole is decent enough to get up steeper pitches and if I ratcheted down the Boa, there was very little heel lift.
- The Vibram sole is the real deal, especially when on hard or rubbly surfaces. Very secure.
- The Boa on this shoe has actually been better then the ones on the S Works shoes we reviewed. I have had no kinks in the cable and the dial seems to be smoother. It does not have the little helper tag on the cable to pull the cable around the ‘hook’ it nests in, but I could do it pretty easily with my bare hands…gloved, not so much. The micro adjust is very nice with Boa, allowing you to make quick adjustments ‘on the fly’.
- It took me a bit to get my foot educated to hit the SPD pedal right each time and at first I would hunt a bit to engage the cleat, especially with the left shoe…why left, I don’t know. But now I have it down pretty well.
- I wonder if Specialized changed the specs on shoe width over the last few years? Both these and the S Works shoes seem narrow at the ball of the foot and that made it harder to get a wool sock to work for cool weather use. If you have wide feet, better try them first.
I took them on a ride to a nearby ride area that is full of sandstone and is a mini-Moab of sorts. There were times I needed to walk and other times I walked on purpose, like this all rock pitch here in the pic below (it is steeper than it looks). The Vibram sole is so secure feeling that it is just a game changer and that was true every time I was off the bike and hoofin’ it. It was not at all like ‘dancing on ice’ the way a hard soled racing shoe feels.
Frankly, this type of shoe is what I would buy for my personal use. I do not race XC, but if I did, these are stiff enough and light enough to not be a problem. They are not too low end and the Boa seems to be solid on this shoe. They are stiff enough for long days in the saddle but are a big step up in performance for off the bike efforts like stream crossing/rock hopping/steep descents, etc. And, they come in black too.
For me, all win and no loss.
NOTE: Specialized supplied these shoes to Twenty Nine Inches for test/review at no charge. We are not being bribed, nor paid for these posts, and we will strive to give our honest thoughts and opinions throughout.