Microspikes Alternatives

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illusion7il
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Microspikes Alternatives

Post by illusion7il » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:32 am

Just had my 2nd pair of Microspikes crap out on me. I put my boots on the register vent to dry with the microspikes still on them, pulled them off about 24 hours later only to find that the rubber had snapped on both of them. They are just past there 2 year warranty. Looks like there are a bunch of other companies that make these nowadays. I've always been a big fan of Microspikes but at $70 a pop, I'm now looking for alternatives. At that price I could try out 2-4 other brands.

Has anyone found a generic set of Microspikes that actually hold up?
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justiner
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by justiner » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:36 am

Why are you keeping the micro spikes on all the time? Would it make more sense to only put them on, only when they're needed?
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JaredJohnson
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by JaredJohnson » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:40 am

illusion7il wrote:only to find that the rubber had snapped on both of them. They are just past there 2 year warranty.
Despite their being out of warranty you might try calling up the company. I have heard rumours that they stand by their product pretty passionately. Can't hurt to find out if they'll replace them for you (:

-Jared
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illusion7il
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by illusion7il » Mon Jan 07, 2019 11:52 am

justiner wrote:Why are you keeping the micro spikes on all the time? Would it make more sense to only put them on, only when they're needed?
Obviously that was my error leaving them on after using them but that was actually the 1st time I have ever done that. I had planned on going out for a hike the next day where I would need them so I left them on, and the thought never even crossed my mind that they would break while not in use.
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by HikerGuy » Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:12 pm

Care Instructions: Wash with lukewarm water and air-dry (do NOT dry with heat). Ensure the product is clean and dry before storage. Inspect before each use.
Apparently, drying with heat is a big no-no. Not criticizing, I wasn't aware of that and thought it was interesting. Also, I've always stored mine out of sunlight/UV (do not leave in back of car), not sure if that helps longevity or not. Sorry, no advice to offer on alternate brands.
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by SurfNTurf » Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:48 pm

I just had a repair through Kahtoola myself. They don't do anything to check their two-year warranty, it's kind of an honor system. I'd fill out a request on their site and see what happens.
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Jeff Valliere
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by Jeff Valliere » Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:35 pm

I have found Microspikes to be very durable and last me a long long time, but I do a few things that may help increase their longevity.

1. I make sure they are sized right. I am a US Men's size 10 and I use sizes Small, Medium and Large depending. Medium most of the time for the majority of my trail running shoes, but will use my Large for my larger winter insulated boots, as they fit much better than stretching my size medium to the max.. I also have a size Small for my more slim and sleek race shoes (like a Salomon S/Lab Sense 7 SG), as the mediums seem floppy and are more likely to twist and catch on things causing damage.

2. I use them sparingly. I am not afraid to walk/run on rock with them, but I keep it to a minimum and mostly use them if I know the trail will be continuous snow.

3. Not sure what/where your most typical need for traction entails, but for me, I run daily in the foothills of Boulder where conditions are most often in Winter a mix of snow, dry trail, hard ice over and over again and have transitioned to studded shoes like the Salomon Speedspike CS (Ice Bugs are good too, as well as La Sportiva Hobnails). Studded shoes transition much better between varied surfaces and I find it rare that I will need more than that, but will bust out the spikes when I do need more. The studs in the aforementioned options are carbide and extremely durable, you will wear the shoe out first.

Another option, Yak Trax makes a model called the Summit, which employ a Boa system vs. stretchy rubber. They are really durable and might be a better option for you, but they are heavy compared to Microspikes.

Good luck!
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by lsuandy12 » Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:56 pm

I swear by my Hillsound Trail Crampons Pro. They have never failed me in 4 years, all snow, ice, and rock. They hold very well going down hill and traversing side slopes. I even feel like they make postholing more tolerable. I put them on my North face Chilkat boots and then use the Hillsound Super Armadillo gaiters over the crampon straps. Since owning the trail crampons, I've never once used spikes again. It's either the crampons or snowshoes in winter, nothing else needed in my book.
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justiner
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by justiner » Mon Jan 07, 2019 2:29 pm

Jeff Valliere wrote: Another option, Yak Trax makes a model called the Summit, which employ a Boa system vs. stretchy rubber. They are really durable and might be a better option for you, but they are heavy compared to Microspikes.
I can't really vouch for the Yak Trax Summit myself. The upper is interesting, but complex. The weakness seems to be the rivets hold the chains together (to the upper, and to connect the chains), and the spikes themselves seem to easily dull.
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Jeff Valliere
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by Jeff Valliere » Mon Jan 07, 2019 2:45 pm

justiner wrote:
Jeff Valliere wrote: Another option, Yak Trax makes a model called the Summit, which employ a Boa system vs. stretchy rubber. They are really durable and might be a better option for you, but they are heavy compared to Microspikes.
I can't really vouch for the Yak Trax Summit myself. The upper is interesting, but complex. The weakness seems to be the rivets hold the chains together (to the upper, and to connect the chains), and the spikes themselves seem to easily dull.

Yeah, truth be told, me neither really. I reviewed them a few years ago and they seemed burly and have pretty significant spikes, perhaps a good alternative for hiking and those who have trouble with conventional stretchy rubber spikes (and do not mind the added weight), but I personally prefer the Microspikes on the occasions I need/want more than the studded shoes I most often wear.

As to dulling spikes, I bought a cheap bench grinder specifically to keep my Microspikes sharp, easily doubling or tripling their life.
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by tjmartn1 » Mon Jan 07, 2019 4:09 pm

Not sure how long yours are lasting before "crapping out", but I have used the same pair for about 5 years now, whereas I bought a cheap second set of spikes off of amazon last year to loan to partners and the replacements broke that same season, so for me I think I'll spend the extra money on the real deal again next time and avoid cheap imitations.
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Re: Microspikes Alternatives

Post by brichardsson » Mon Jan 07, 2019 4:47 pm

SurfNTurf wrote:I just had a repair through Kahtoola myself. They don't do anything to check their two-year warranty, it's kind of an honor system. I'd fill out a request on their site and see what happens.
why would you tell someone to try to get a free repair when they broke it by not using it as directed? this is exactly why rei has changed their longstanding return any item ever policy, because of abuse like this.
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