Boot Scrum Continues — Crispi Jumps In

Post by blogger | January 24, 2012      

Crispi is known in the telemark world (early adopter of the weird NTN system). As many of you know, they’ve also made and sold various AT boots over the years. In what appears to be somewhat of a re-launch, they’ve got a sweet little lineup of 4 new AT boots that’ll begin retailing next fall (as well as several basic F1 knockoffs that were previously available). We’ll attempt to on-snow some of these eventually. For now, first-look.

Crispi backcountry skiing AT boots for 1012 2013

Crispi backcountry skiing AT boots for 1012 2013, left to right: Enigma, Skr!!m, Skwo:l, Synthesi. No, those funky names are not typos. I guess Crispi decided to beat the other Euros at their own weird naming game. Was thinking that double !! would cause an html interpreter error when used in my photo caption, I guess not, but I'm sure Google will not be pleased as they have a thing about too many exclamation marks in website content.

Two things stand out with this boot line. First, Crispi has devised yet another way (making four or five such solution in the industry, depending on how you count) of providing one-motion cuff buckle and lean lock. This feature is becoming more common, and in my view will eventually become the standard with most AT boots. It is a tough feature to implement, what with navigating around other boot maker’s patents and actually creating something that works. More below on that. The other interest item is with the Enigma model they’re thermo molding most of the lower shoe from a resin/fabric that’s easier to work with than injection molding with liquid plastic. This stuff is strong and stiff, something like carbon fiber mat used to mold the cuffs on high end race boots. Aside from keeping cost down, main idea is added stiffness with less weight penalty. In my view, this method of using thermoplastic woven mat in ski boots is something that’ll need scrutiny, but perhaps is a way to bypass the tyranny of injection molding that’s made ski boots so expensive and difficult to make.

Enigma by Crispi ski mountaineering backcountry boot.

Enigma by Crispi, lightweight ski mountaineering backcountry and skimo race boot. The Pebax lower frame is riveted to the thermoplastic composite mat, word is they're working on adhesive solutions, the rivets are not impressive. Catalog claimed weight of 1150 gr per pair is hard to believe, probably actually single boot weight, still quite good and excellent if street price is right (MSRP $995).

Crispi Scr!!m ski mountaineering boot.

Crispi Scr!!m ski mountaineering boot. One motion closure, Pebax, lower reinforced with rigid thermoplastic insert that appears to add quite a bit of manufacturing complexity so I hope it's worth the cost and effort. Claimed weight 1580 gr per boot is fine if they're stiff.

Crispi one-motion cuff lock system.

Crispi one-motion cuff lock system is not as complex as it looks. The latch is spring loaded, so when not under tension from the cable it springs open and disengages the cuff lock.

Skwo:l 4-buckle model features a fur lined inner that harkens to a Vegas honeymoon suit, but is said to be quite nice. Pebax with thermoplastic insert in lower, conventional lean lock.

Price point Synthesi model (MSRP $650) is three buckle, lower shoe and cuff are Pebax, tongue some sort of plastic they call “Polymer” which is probably used to reduce cost.

All liners appear to be thermo moldable, and all boots have tech inserts.


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18 Responses to “Boot Scrum Continues — Crispi Jumps In”

  1. Gentle Sasquatch January 24th, 2012 10:20 am

    I would love to buy softer, bellowed boots with dyna inserts that I could use on touring backcountry skis mounted with Dynafit Speeds or LaSportiva RT’s. Basically boots that would tour very well and help you click in on some downhills if you need it. Also some telemarkers might enjoy trying to make turns with their toes locked in.

  2. Lou January 24th, 2012 10:35 am

    Their two bellowed models for AT are Evo and Shiver, not new for this year, both have tech inserts as well as second heel for NTN binding. This and many other options make it possible to both tele and alpine with the same boots. Yawn.

    You can see the Evo at Backcountry com:

  3. Eric January 24th, 2012 10:46 am

    I don’t get the fascination with the “one-motion cuff buckle and lean lock” on a standard BC ski boot. I understand the advantage for a rando race boot, but is flipping the lean lever really that big if you are just out skiing? There are times (using crampons) that I want the cuff buckled but the lean lock dis-engaged. With the one-motion cuff buckle/lean lock, I now have to mod the boots to be able to do that, all so I can save 1 second during transitions?

    Like I said, I don’t get it, seems like a solution in search of a problem to me. If they really want to speed up my transitions, they should figure out a better power strap.

  4. Gentle Sasquatch January 24th, 2012 10:48 am

    Those look way too stiff for touring. I had in mind something like Garmont Excursion with tech inserts used on skinny backcountry skis.

  5. Dave Field January 24th, 2012 11:47 am

    I’m with Eric regarding the need for an “all-in-one” lean lock and cuff buckle. For standard ski mountaineering, I prefer separate mechanisms. It keeps the boot profile smoother without the huge hinge in the back. Its also more robust to have separate mechanisms, as well as simpler to modify to dial in your lean. I typicallly leave my upper cuff buckled and just release the lean lock for touring and climbing.

  6. Toby January 24th, 2012 1:46 pm

    Well.. it is good to have more options. Isn’t? But I’m not impressed! Scrmmm is similar to Scarpa Rush, but heavier. And I don’t see where Enigma can be better than TLT5 or other (new) boots in this class.

    Dave; what boots you have. If I leave my upper buckle closed (standard classical boots with tongue; like zZeros or Zeus, no change to get free touring cuff without losing the upper buckle and pwr strap completely.

    I’m now skiing Scarpa Aliens and the boot/cuff profile stays smoother than any of my previous boots. I can even leave the power strap as is. Just open the lever and whoa!!; you have full freedom within 1sec. Whole thing requires much less room than any classic buckled boots.

    But no, I don’t need that speed for my everyday skiing. What I wanted to say is that there is difference and it is big and impressive (what come to the mode change.)
    My day dream boot is a relatively strong boot with F1 / Alien like a HEAVY DUTY upper cuff buckle, but without any power strap. Now, that would be nice feature.
    Waiting to see and hear more about LaSportivas.

  7. Lou January 24th, 2012 4:21 pm

    I still have to give Tecnica, Dalbello and BD their due… options there as well. Just amazing, really, the choices out there.

  8. CozT January 24th, 2012 5:18 pm

    I skied a pair of the older Crispi AT boots for a while. They had their flaws, but they (a) were plenty stiff, (b) skied pretty well, and (c) were wonderfully cheap. Looks like they’ve abandoned being the cheap option in the market – to my chagrin.

  9. Ralph January 25th, 2012 7:26 am

    I’m with Eric et al on no need for an integrated buckle/hinge lock. I prefer reliability and simplicity. Skimo shmimo.

  10. Lou January 25th, 2012 8:55 am

    Ralph, I’d say you have a point… if those boots with integrated buckle/lock are significantly lighter and lock just as well, then no harm, but no need to obsess on this feature and I hope I didn’t appear to do so… after all, if you use a power strap most people will adjust it no matter what type of cuff closure, thus obviating the “one motion” holy grail. I like the TLT5 closure because it is indeed super positive, allows major cuff articulation, saves weight, and yes it’s nice to fiddle less. But they all need to be that good before they’re a killer feature. Lou

  11. Lars January 27th, 2012 11:13 am

    Hey Lou, stop dissing ntn or I’ll stop reading your blog 🙂

    Dynafits are lighter and tour better but are hard to tele on…

  12. Lou January 27th, 2012 11:33 am

    There was a time when “weird” was a compliment to any telemarker worth their granola. My, how things change (grin). Lou

  13. Johan November 16th, 2012 5:52 am

    What about the cuff rotation on the enigma and the skr!!m? Compared to dynafit tlt5 and zzero?

  14. Lou Dawson November 16th, 2012 6:13 am

    I guess we need to get hooked up better with doing some Crispi reviews…. I’ll look into it. Lou

  15. rory March 18th, 2013 11:03 pm

    I am looking at purchasing the crispi skwol in a size 26. Can you tell me the bsl in mm for this size?

  16. Lou Dawson March 19th, 2013 6:05 am

    Rory, sorry, but we don’t have that information. Did you try asking the place where you’re thinking of buying the boots?

  17. Mark January 15th, 2018 12:11 am

    Lou were you ever able to actually ski the enigmas? I found a pair for cheap but I’m having trouble finding any sort of information on their fit and performance.

  18. Lou Dawson 2 January 15th, 2018 10:01 am

    You have presented me with an enigma, as I don’t recall whether I ever skied those… sorry. Lou

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