Altberg boots

Discussion in 'Weapons, Equipment & Rations' started by matthewtune, Aug 24, 2006.

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  1. Hi there

    I am after some new boots for general inf field work. Decided to look into the altberg defender range, however after some reading up I am a bit unsure. Are these boots FULLY waterproof? In particular the "Altberg Defender MK111 Original Boot"

    also sombody with experence of altbergs: What are they like in the colder climates (UK winter only) compared to boots such as lowa's???

  2. Whilst the Altbergs are a good boot, what tipped it for me is that they are made in the UK.

    Lowas are very good boots, but most people are buying them for the wrong reasons and end up cutting about in camp in a pair of semi-stiffened mountaineering boots (somewhat of an overkill).

    Buy the Defenders (or the lightweight Lowas from the arrse 'actionson' shop) and upgrade if these aren't warm enough for UK winter (cheap upgrade with sealskin socks if you can't afford a second pair of boots).

    You may experience problems with goretex boots not drying out quickly when constantly wet, so you can get foot problems even with the best boots. So you're better off with lighter boots and change your socks more often.

    There is a Lowa-type boot issued now, and if you ever go anywhere really cold you'd need the issued Alico's anyhow. They aren't very nice to wear but are compatable with the ski's.

    Any boot is only 'waterproof' until you get in the river :wink:
  3. I had Matterhorn Orions, Great until i bought Corcoran Marauders.

    Seriously, Corcorans are well worth getting, They look like Issue Boots but they last friggin long and take a beating. Should be exported to Britain.

    Not important but here is a dopey site about ways of lacing boots up.
  4. You can't go wrong with these beauties! They's "des Hundes Eier" (which is German for "the dog's danglies"). The leather is suberb quality and they really do look like issue daisies.

    Although they come from America, delivery takes about 14 days. Just remember to ask them to write "Birthday present" on the packaging and you won't have to pay any customs either.

  6. untallguy

    untallguy Old-Salt Reviewer Book Reviewer

    I've used Altberg Defenders for about 8 or 9 years now and, for me, they are the dogs knackers. I've used them all through the year in everyone's least favourite wet spots - Sennybridge, Otterburn etc - and they've never let me down. I switched to Defender Microlites a couple of years back and they are just as good. These are good all-round boots for field work and an excellent tabbing boot.

    Plusses: Light, speed-lacing system, comfortable, break in quickly, very sturdy, good ankle support, good shock absorption, when wet dry relatively quickly (eg when compared to issue boot), UK made

    Minuses: A bit pricey, get wet easily (if not properly maintained)

    I would agree with G_R in that they are not the warmest boot around - they are not lined like Lowas, Pro-Boots etc and, like all unlined boots, can be a bit chilly. However, with some decent socks and good boot maintainance, they will look after your feet very well - once you throw in your own admin to look after your feet, you're on to a winner.
  7. No boot will be fully waterproof unless it has a waterproof lining e.g. goretex or is made of rubber or similar. The problem with waterproof boots (even Goretex) is that your feet will end up wet anyway from sweating. water can, of course get in over the top as well.

    Waterproof boots also take longer to dry out once wet inside for obvious reasons.

    Unless you are planning to go somewhere really wet, where the water coming in is a constant problem. I would advise getting boots that are quick to dry as oposed to fully waterproof and several pairs of good socks which you should change regularly. Dry feet are warm and healthy feet! Also fully waterproof boots tend to be heavier than others.
  9. ViroBono

    ViroBono LE Moderator

    I have a pair of Altberg Patrol all-weather HTX boots, and a pair of their desert boots. Both are absolutely superb, not least because I visited the factory and so was able to have them fitted properly, with custom insoles that have made a huge difference - I was happy to pay a bit of a premium for that. They're not only made in UK; even better, they're made in North Yorkshire, which is reet good in my book.
  10. I have 3 pairs, one over 12 years old (Field and Fell) that have been resoled and innered about 5 times. I now have had them made into a set that the Yetti Extreme gaters can fix onto.

    I have a normal set of Field and Fell and a set of Defender, and went to the shop in Richmond to get them sized and fitted corectly.

    All in all they are the best boots I have found. Lasted me through a winter in Bos and summers in Sennybridge!!! (Not sure which was worse....) and both Junior and Senior Brecon.

    I use pieces of inner tube cut off to fit over my boot tops if I'm going to be going somewhere very wet to stop water ingress over the boot top.

    Otherwise they are fine.
  11. I have a pair of Altberg Peacekeeper P1s which I've taken hiking and on OTC camps for about 8 months now, constituting around 8 weeks total, solid use in a variety of climates from blisteringly hot to snowy hillsides. They are much more comfortable and well fitting than the issue boots, and mostly waterproof once polished, even with Kiwi. However, they did get wet after a few hours trudging through two-foot snow - even with gaiters - and can get cold if you're staying still for any length of time.

    In the Kent heatwave last summer they were pig-sweatingly hot and wet, but any black leather boots will be like that I suppose. The undersole's tread pattern is starting to seriously wear away, and I haven't exactly been walking on volcanic basalt. They've started giving me hotspots and blisters after a few hours, forcing me to ZO-tape my feet up, which I certainly didn't have to do at the beginning. In addition, the sole and ankle sides have never been quite stiff enough for really rough terrain. If you look at this picture, you can see the different leather at the sides - this is much softer. In addition, don't ever go downhill for any length of time in these boots, they really bash your toes in. Even after a length of time on flat ground, my toes feel numb quickly.

    The front D-rings have chewed through two pairs of laces since they have five opposing pairs of rings for the lower part of the foot, followed by a pair set back, followed by some speed-lacers. They are quite difficult to do up tightly at the bottom due to the laces being almost perpendicular across the foot, and not having the 'locking' hooks you have on issue boots.

    Overall Altberg is a good bootmaker, but you need to choose the boots carefully. Get a model with fewer D-rings, the locking system which makes tight lacing easier, better ankle support and one with a full rubber rand. Always try your boots on in a shop first - Silvermans in East London is excellent for this, and if you feel guilty about using their service but buying from eBay afterwords, just buy some socks in the shop or something.

    Personally, I will be going for a pair of Meindl Desert Foxes or Lowa Desert Elites for summer hiking and casual wear - they're going for £55-65 on eBay, and should I start a military career in earnest, I'll be looking at Lowas or elsewhere for my black leather boots. (Assuming the British Army doesn't follow the Americans and ditch black leather for brown/tan suede?)

    Altberg Defenders are almost identical to the Peacekeepers, but feature a stiffer sole. Some models feature a steel shank for safety.
  12. Toes bashing into the Toe Box of a boot, sounds like they are slightly too small for you and your feet are swelling when tabbing,
    My Alberg Warriors were fitted tome at the factory and I have had no problems whatso ever with blisters, hot spots or toe bashing in 3 years of use
  13. I'd suggest to the last 2 posters that the OP has probably got the boots he needs and probably the next pair after that...
  14. Oops I didn't look at the date. Basically I was thinking about my boots and searched for altberg and chose the first thread.

    I appreciate the advice Kurgen, I'll be a bit looser on the fitting next time.
  15. Probably right Devilish, was pointing out to Grapevine a possible reason why his feet hurt.
    And Grapevine, there is no one boot that will fit every foot.
    All manufactures are slightly different, get your feet measured properly and accuratley, then try lots of different types on.
    I have two pairs of walking boots, Scarpa and La Sportiva. They are both fantastic pairs of boots and very comfortable, but both pairs are a different size
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