Sidi Charger Boots - Dirt Rider Magazine

I really like Sidi boots. The Crossfire SR fits me like a glove, is as protective as they come, breaks in easily and lasts as long as anything out there, and I am very hard on boots. But for some, the $500 price tag might be a little hard to swallow, especially if you are a cheap screw like I can be at times. But for $375, Sidi has the Charger, which is a step down from the Crossfire but not by much. More comparable to the Crossfire TA, because the soles are a similar classically stitched-on design, this pair of Chargers have lasted for the past year, and I'm really impressed. How much, you ask? Well, I was actually getting the Charger mixed up with my Crossfire once both got all dirty, and I had to do a double take to make sure I was evaluating the right boot when writing notes for this impression. Sure, there are some differences in the materials and the country of origin, but once on your foot those do not seem to stand out.The Charger has Sidi's great hinged ankle that makes the foot flex up and down quite easily, with no break-in required. That hinge makes it stiff as hell on the side-to-side where you don't want your ankle to buckle. The plastic pieces are tough and in all the right places; nothing extra or fancy on this boot, it is all business and very easy to get on since it opens up wide. The leather areas on the boot have acted as good as any; even if it isn't really leather, it's a synthetic called Lorica. The stuff is tough and lasts. I wouldn't call the boot waterproof, but it was about as water-resistant as any boot I've used. There is nothing fancy about the upper cuffs of the boots, though they seal, even on tricky knee-brace-laden legs.Sizing runs from 7.5 to 13, and in my experience Sidis pretty much run true to size. And while some of the toe boxes on Sidi boots, especially the sole replacement ones, can run a little thin, I did not have that issue at all with the Charger; it was plenty wide without being too large of a diameter on the outside. The cam-lock buckles are the best in the business as far as I'm concerned-easy to use and they stay closed; easily adjustable and the adjustments stay put. Since the boot is overall a little less stiff in the upper portion of the calf, I ended up wearing these whenever I was trail riding. Over time I actually prefer them for that. Simply put, if you want to get a $450 boot for $375, this is the one. Then if you really like them, it is only a stepping-stone to its bigger brother the next go-around if you decide to look for a little more. -Jimmy Lewis