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Author Topic: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?  (Read 1081 times)

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Offline slcbelle

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[EDITED]

After 6 months in my Riedell 375 Gold Stars, and about $350 in modifications and custom orthotics, I think I have to ditch them.  Like my Jackson Premieres, they are giving me Haglund's deformity and now I'm experiencing issues with metatarsalgia from the poor fit.  So, I need customs.  I've already been through 2 pair of boots in 14 months so I have to get it right this time.

I have the opportunity to go to Oakland several times this summer and Harlick is in San Carlos and SP Teri is in San Fran.  I have a narrow heel with limited dorsiflexion and tight achilles tendons but wide forefeet with slight bunions inside and out.  So, what do you think?  Harlick or SP Teri?  A Google search is turning up conflicting info.  Some say Harlick's are narrow.  Some say SP Teri are perfect for wide feet and narrow heels.  What do I know?

I've also read that Klingbeils are really great for custom boots.  I could go to NYC or get fitted by a dealer in CA.  Those are also options.

Can you help me decide?  Of course, I could go to both places to get measured.  I'm sure they will both sell me on features.  What would you do if you were me?
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Offline irenar5

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Re: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2013, 11:38:32 AM »
I have had some woes with Riedell 875.  The fit seemed to be too long for my foot, even though I was measured for it properly.  I also had some pressure over the ankle bend that resulted in numbness over one of my feet (resolved now).
 I was at your point trying to decide between custom manufacturers.

I also have a wide ball with a medial bunion and a narrow heel.  The boot fitter recommended I go with Harlick vs SP Teri (he deals in both), because the SP Teri are much heavier and he claimed that the shape of my foot is more of a " Harlick foot".

I have not explored Klingbeil, but I have heard mixed reviews from adults at my rink.  Some love them, some don't.  The ones who do say there is more room in the toe area (which dissuaded me, since I was very sensitive to this room in Riedells and  felt like I was sliding forward).  This is more of a personal preference, though.  I don't think you really know until you have tried one and then the other fit.

I was measured for custom  Harlicks, and I like the fit a lot!  I ended up getting Competitor Plus in the lightweight (microfiber) option.  According to the Harlick website my weight and skill level  should put me in a stiffer boot, but my fitter dissuaded me from getting it- and he was right!  This boot has perfect support.   I have had them for a year now and there is not any sign of breakage!  They have a wide ball and a heel so narrow  that I feel like it is hermeticlly sealed when I take out my foot :-)  The Achilles area is very well padded as well.
 Occasionally they rub here or there, but I think that is just the nature of the sport.    I  wear silicone ankle sleeves and they take care of the issue.

I think if you can go directly to the manufacturer to get measured, that would be the best.  Next time I need boots, that is what I will do. 
However, even with these custom boots,  I had to make a few modifications - punch out the ankles and  punch out the bunion more.  Next time I also think I will go with leather, even though they are heavier.  I think microfiber is not as wear moldable as they claim.
Also, get either custom insoles or heat moldable superfeet.  The Harlick insole is a thin piece of leather without any cushioning.

Good luck!  I know it is a big decision, but your feel willl be happier!

Offline slcbelle

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Re: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2013, 12:27:29 PM »
Irenar5, that's great input.  I'm a lot like you and need to have the heels locked down and padded.  I started wearing a Bunga sleeve but with the Riedells, it's not a long term solution.  I had custom skate orthotics made by my ski boot fitter/physical therapist and I HOPE they will work in whatever boot I get because those suckers cost me $200.  It' so difficult to decide because some people love their custom boots and others say they had just as much trouble with customs as with stocks.
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Offline Sk8tmum

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Re: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2013, 07:03:06 PM »
I have one kid in Riedells; used to use 875s.  Now 1900s. Also have one kid in Harlicks, used to be in Klings, both customs.

The Riedells are great if you have a Riedell foot.  They will also do "basic" custom changes, but, they don't do full custom.

In terms of "Harlick" vs "Klingbeil" foot ... if you're going full custom, it really doesn't matter. My kid has weird feet; both boots fit perfectly, and I know others with custom boots from the same makers who have equally weird and very different feet that also are perfectly fitted. 

In terms of the options:  We got the same in both boots. Both have heel locks, extra padding, tongue "posts", roll tops to prevent "rub" at the top of the boot (successfully for both).  Both are at the same stiffness level; we changed because of the Klingbeil possible bankruptcy. So, I do have two identical pairs of boots to compare.

In terms of cost, looking at buying now, the Harlicks would be cheaper as all of the features we want are standard whereas it seems that Kling would charge for some of them.  We have had no problems with the Harlick insoles; I have however, recommended them to another skater who needs "real" orthotics as Harlicks does good work with those needs.  Both are heavily padded in the ankle area; both heel locks are excellent, and work well. Both hold down a very very very narrow heel up to triple jumps and spins.  Both fit perfectly.

Differences:  I like the quality of the Harlick leather.  It's elk, and it seems to wear better than the Klings, and it's a nicer sheen/texture (IMHO).  Harlick have a higher heel (although you can change that with custom) which helped with jumps and spins, I think the Harlick heel height is closer to the Riedell height - Klings are flatter.  The Harlicks look neater, IMHO, on the feet based on the cut - they are very traditional in style. The tongue hasn't had the same issues with twisting as we had with the Klings (even with the posts in regular use and careful usage).  The Harlicks are harder to lace up; you have to seriously pull them up with the laces as otherwise the fit isn't as perfect as it might be. The leather in the soles seems to be holding up better under wear and tear and moisture ... maybe it's the way we have them sealed, though.

My kid also found the Harlicks far lighter than the Klings, which was great.  We have  a "sweaty feet" issue, and the Harlicks come with Clarino leather inside at no cost, which helps with moisture resistance. IIRC, Clarino leather is a Kling option, but, it used to cost extra ... don't know about now.

I've heard of many skaters locally who have had problems with Kling orders of late; wrong sizes and features, slow turnaround time. We are really rare ducks around here with Harlick: it's very unusual, so I can't comment. However, the boots were perfect fit out of the box, measured by local fitter.  We are sticking with them for future skates without question. 

Offline Neverdull44

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Re: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2013, 08:56:28 PM »
I have Haglund's too.  You know, I posted on your thread.  I go to the doctor on Tuesday, and ordered those bungo pad (first time).

I had Riedell in my 20s.  Caused cyst, ankle operation, and Haglund.  Now, I have Harlicks.  Why?  My foot grew a size after 2 kids.  Harlick made my boots to fit my old blades.  Harlicks were cheaper then new Riedells with new blades. 

Sadly, my Haglund bump is flaring up right now (past two weeks), but it's my fault as I messed with the Haricks by adding some padding inside.  It wasn't needed, just my old feet arches hurt about 10 minutes into skating, lasting about 5 minutes, and then I'm fine.  But, the padding caused my heel to rub :-(

I love the Harlick elk leather.  No wear showing on my Harlicks, and have been skating for 6 months now.  I went with the lamb's wool on the tongue, and love that option.  I always got tongue rub before, but the lamb's wool stopped it.  Next time, I might do lamb's wool on the entire insides, it's so nice!!!!!!   Other then Haglunds, my feet are super comfy in my Harlicks.

I have a narrow heel, wider toe area . . . but not very large.  Normal shoe size is now 9.5 B.

Whatever boot you get, skating boots always feel great when you take them off and put on regular shoes. LOL.

Offline Purple Sparkly

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Re: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2013, 09:18:21 PM »
You should be able to send your orthotic when you place your order and they will build the boot around the orthotic.

I have never worn Harlick, but I would not recommend SP Teri.

Offline irenar5

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Re: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2013, 11:52:29 PM »
Slcbelle, definitely bring your orthotic when you get fitted- they need to take it into account when the boots are made.

On a side note,  do you tend to wear a lot of high heels?  They shorten Achilles tendon, resulting in limited dorsiflexion.  I would suggest a wobble board to help with stretching and strengthening of the ankle as well as wearing  flat shoes.  While the heel of the skating boot is not tall, it is a heel and can put strain on the tendon.


Offline slcbelle

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Re: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?
« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2013, 12:16:53 AM »
Wow!  I love you all and this forum.  Your input is tremendous.

Slcbelle, definitely bring your orthotic when you get fitted- they need to take it into account when the boots are made.

Mos def, I will.


On a side note,  do you tend to wear a lot of high heels?  They shorten Achilles tendon, resulting in limited dorsiflexion.

I don't wear heels over 2.5".  I saw a podiatrist when I was in high school for foot pain (the beginning of bunions) and he told me to stay away from high heels. That said, I wore 2" heels more of my life including a decade in NYC walking miles each day on 1.5" to 2.5" heels but nothing crazy. I've been diagnosed with limited dorsiflexion that, supposedly, has been going on since birth but I could have made it worse over the ayers.  A wobble board is a great idea.   More gym equipment!

NeverDull, lambs wool sounds awesome.  Maybe it will also help with my cold toes?

Ska8tmum, Harlick it is! 
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Offline roseyhebert

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Re: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?
« Reply #8 on: June 03, 2013, 11:18:57 AM »
I have worn both SP Teri and Klings.  Klings are by far my favorite.  I don't feel like SP-Teri held up with a poopies.  LOVE my Klings.  I don't need a gel sleeve or anything other than my tights on my feet.  No problems with then what so ever.  They are from March 2005 and have held up like rock stars.  My SP-Teri gave me burning sensations in certain spots that never seem to go away no matter what we did to them. 

Offline JSM

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Re: Harlick vs SP Teri vs Klingbeil Customs- What's the difference?
« Reply #9 on: June 03, 2013, 08:19:18 PM »
I have a super tight Achilles, and what my PT called the shortest calves she'd ever seen.  I'm NOT a high heel wearer ( never was), and I suspect I've had this problem for a long time, contributing to other issues.

What's been helping is 3 types of calf stretches EVERY day, and I use stacked pillows instead of a wobble board, but all these exercises do help.  I still have pathetic knee bend and and limited dorsiflexion, but less so. 

As for skates, I've worn SP-Teri for years, but only because stock boots fit my foot well, NOT because of the service, if that helps!