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The Bont short track Z ice skate gives you the stiffness and ultra light weight that you would find in a $1000+ short track boot for a fraction of the cost. The Z is made with a 3k plain weave carbon fiber composite base. The carbon is sourced exclusively from the world’s #1 carbon manufacturer, Toray in Japan, and for extra support we have put 10 layers of Toray carbon fiber around the ankle.
Getting the right fit is essential for comfort and performance. The Z skate starts out being built around a last that has been modified and improved for over 35 years by Mr. Inze Bont. The epoxy resin is the most heat moldable in the industry. Under the liner is a high quality memory foam that is 2mm thick and 70A in hardness so your energy doesn’t get absorbed by the boot.
With the Z, you get the best of everything and for a very affordable price.
- Base: Carbon composite base
- Outer skin: Microfiber
- Liner: Suede-L
- Innersole: Leather
- Heat moldable: Fully heat moldable base utilizing epoxy thermoset resin
- Padding: High density memory foam
- Closing options: Laces, lace cover and two velcro strap
- Fit options: Standard, narrow and wide
Manufacturing skates by hand, inside out, is a method Bont retains and is exceptionally proud of. The manufacturing process is far more skill-intensive and time-consuming than other manufacturing processes. Perhaps, most importantly, this enables Bont skates to lead the industry in performance. It does, however, result in a higher production cost than mainstream skate construction methods.
We continue to develop and refine our manufacturing process to maintain the best delivery of our high-quality products. For example, processes such as the use of generic vacuum boxes for the curing of carbon have been replaced. Today, for carbon curing, we use methods such as pressure wrapping. Pressure wrapping provides four atmospheres of pressure rather than one atmosphere you find in traditional vacuum forming.
Inze Bont’s, the renowned skate designer, engineering, has allowed our production line to optimize the manufacturing of our handmade monocoque skates in the most time-efficient manner possible.
Our innovative manufacturing processes match our drive for design innovation. Lighter, Stronger, Faster.
Read our process for Last Design, Footbed, Liner, Anti-Stretch, Carbon Fiber, Upper, and more in the self-titled sections below.
Ever wondered what Carbon Fiber is? For instance, is it Carbon Fiber or Carbon Fibre? To clarify, Fibre and Fiber have the same meaning. Fibre is the British English spelling, while Fiber is the US English spelling.
Carbon Fiber is a revolutionary material. It is as strong as steel with a fraction of the weight.
Carbon Fiber consists of mainly bonded carbon atoms. For example, the fibers’ long axis consists of particles that have been bonded together and aligned. Following this, a yarn is created by twisting several thousand of the threads together. Finally, a piece of fabric is woven from the yarn.
Here at Bont, we have been producing carbon-based boots since 1989. Above all and most importantly, we source our carbon exclusively from the world’s number one carbon manufacturer, Toray of Japan.
3k plain is a tightly woven carbon, which is commonly used in the Aircraft industry and Bont shoes.
An extremely stiff, lightweight, and adaptive carbon fiber. We use Unidirectional Carbon in our boots, which allows us to lay the carbon in a direction we choose. Therefore provide extremely stiff and lightweight boots. For example the Vaypor.
A cheaper form of carbon. 12K Plain carbon is not as strong as 3k Plain carbon, which results in the price being around 20% cheaper.
In the old days, if you purchased a plastic or nylon based shoe, you knew what you were getting. However, nowadays, with all of the expensive modern materials, it is getting harder to identify what is in your product. As a result, you may not be getting what you thought you purchased.
Here are some handy tips on different ways manufacturers use materials. That is to say, use these points for consideration in your next purchase.
One layer of carbon
Often, manufacturers misrepresent carbon shoes. For example, the shoe base can be an injection-molded plastic, or nylon, or fiberglass base and usually covered with a single layer of carbon fiber. Unfortunately, when you buy a shoe, and you see that it has a carbon base, the chances are that only the outer layer is carbon.
A variety of shoes are marketed as Unidirectional carbon. However, many of these shoes use injection molded carbon in the plastic and call this Unidirectional Carbon. Consequently, we feel this is a misuse of the terminology. For example, here at Bont, Unidirectional Carbon means carbon fiber, where all of the strands travel in the same direction.
Many shoes use a plastic injection molded base with some carbon particles in it. Also, these shoes typically have a single layer of silver fiberglass for the outer layer. As such, manufacturers advertise ‘carbon fiber’ for these shoes. They are allowed to use this term as there is carbon dust in the plastic mold under the outer fiberglass layer. However, the fiberglass woven material on the outside is not carbon. Above all, remember Carbon Fiber is always black.
What is 100% composite? This term almost covers anything. Therefore, the question you need to ask when considering a composite boot is, A composite of what? In short, a composite boot is usually a nylon fiberglass composite.
A Monocoque shoe is where the carbon is directly laminated onto the liner. Unfortunately, some companies are calling a carbon shell with an integrated heel cup a Monocoque shoe; however, it isn’t.
In summary, be aware of companies jumping on the bandwagon of carbon technology and using keywords to promote their product. Above all, do your research and be mindful of what you are purchasing. We hope this helps your decision in your carbon boot purchase.
What is a Last? The Last is a plastic replica of a foot which the boot is built around.
Here at Bont, we have been perfecting our Lasts since 1975! and the process is ongoing. Unlike the standard Last many companies use, Bont continually focuses on developing and improving our Lasts so that your boots fit right out of the box.
Made in house, from heat-moldable EVA, the Bont Footbed is the first piece of a boot added to the Last. To ensure it retains its extreme light-weight and heat-moldable characteristics, the Footbed is 65A hardness and only 3mm thick.
We reviewed hundreds of different types of Liners before choosing a suitable product to use in our Bont boots. Bont uses Microfiber, Suede-Like, and Durolite as our liners. Ensuring we are working towards sustainability and animal welfare, Bont is using Vegan-friendly products. In short, our liners are light-weight, durable, fight odor, and do not easily break down with sweat.
Our proprietary Anti-Stretch material shares similar strength characteristics with Kevlar. We add this material between the outer layer and the skin, which assists prevent the boot from stretching.
To ensure the material does not move, we stitch it to the outer layer and bond it to the liner. In short, this Anti-Stretch material becomes a part of the boots’ structure. As a result, Bont boots do not stretch out as much as competitors’ boots.
The Bont Upper, the upper section of the boot, is lightweight, glued and sewn onto the boot. We punch holes by hand through the Upper and the Liner for ventilation. Buckles and straps are attached to ensure your foot is pulled down and pushed to the back. Finally, we clean the excess glue off, and the boot is ready for skating. To be deemed ready for action, the boot is required to pass sixteen stages of independent quality control. As a result, we provide you with the best strength to weight ratio on the market.
This boot is designed for high class athletes, so the padding used is thin, dense and a little unforgiving. However, this makes for a super light and responsive skate. The closed cell memory foam used also does not retain water. If you are after a more comfortable ride, please select one of our softer padding options.
Here at Bont, we have been conducting resin development for over 45 years. We formulated a resin that is super stiff, yet moldable at low temperatures. Furthermore, fast cure time is critical for our requirements. Additionally, we are one of the only boot manufacturers who develop their resins in-house.
Our resin softens at just 60°C (140°F), which is the lowest in the industry. As such, you can reheat our resin as many times as required. That is to say; you can heat your boot and easily mold it to your foot. Following the heating, allow your boot to set and cool for your custom mold.
Epoxy or polyepoxide is a thermosetting epoxide polymer that cures when mixed with a catalyzing agent or hardener. We control Polymerization, called curing, through temperature and the choice of resin and hardener compounds. The process can take minutes to hours.
The amount of hardener added to the resin is critically dependent on the temperature of the air and the amount of humidity. For this reason, we have a computer that mixes the resin and hardener. This computer dispenses the resin after measuring the air temperature and humidity.
Most manufacturers use a process known in the industry as pre-preg. A process that involves “pre-impregnating” resin into the carbon fiber.
Pre-preg, in virtually all applications, the carbon fiber manufacturer chooses the resin. Its a one shoe fits all kind of deal. The boot manufacturer has no way of altering the resin customize heat moldability requirements of modern boots. For this reason, many competitors require high temperatures to make their boots heat moldable. Often the boot moldability is limited, even at these high temperatures.
ONE PIECE CONSTRUCTION
At Bont, we produce high-end skates using a method we call One-Piece Construction. This process is far more skill-intensive and time-consuming, resulting in far higher costs than mainstream skate construction methods. However, this method allows our range of skates to lead the market in performance.
When the liner and skin of a boot have been glued to a pre-made base it is called a two-piece boot. Much of the stitching on a two-piece boot is purely cosmetic. Therefore, the stitching serves no structural purpose. It is positioned before the boot is made. As such, a two-piece boot can focus on cosmetics for stitching.
The stitching on Bont one-piece boots is stitching is not cosmetic. It stitches the outer skin to the anti-stretch material that is bonded to the carbon.
Bont manufactures the most heat moldable boots available in the market. Improved continuously for over 45 years, Bont proprietary resin is extremely stiff that becomes pliable at relatively low temperatures.
Bont boots are moldable over the entire base, unlike other skates that are moldable only in select locations. Importantly, this provides skaters with the most anatomically designed boot on the market today. Additionally, skaters with Bont boots can fine-tune the fit of the whole boot to get that customized fit.
Our professional speed skating team are some of the best skaters in the World. They love to give us feedback! From the little things like the placement of the buckle to trialing the latest materials, they help Bont create products that not only look good but perform at the elite international level.
Bont eyelets have a large head, which spreads the pressure over a larger area to help overcome any discomfort. On the other hand, small eyelets can put pressure on a small area and can cause pain.
Most of our Bont boot models have a lace cover as the lace cover gives you extra support, whilst neatly tucking your laces away.
We reviewed hundreds of different types of Liners before choosing a suitable product to use in our Bont boots. Our Suede-L liners are light-weight, durable, fight odor, and do not easily break down with sweat. Additionally, Bonts Suede-L is Vegan friendly.
Microfiber is a durable and lightweight material that can withstand minor crashes without scratching. Additionally, Microfiber comes in a wide variety of colors and three types of finishes; matte, shiny, and metallic. Finally, Microfiber is one of the Bont Vegan products.
BUY WITH CONFIDENCE
You can always buy Bont Skates with confidence. Skaters have been buying Bont Skates since 1975 and we are the world’s largest manufacturer of inline speed skates and short track speed skates and custom skates as well as one of the largest manufacturers of roller derby skates.
We have a reputation for looking after our customers. We do everything possible to ensure that our products are made to the highest standards. As an example, all of our boots go through 16 individual stages of quality control before they are shipped out.
Our inline wheels, roller skate wheels and frames are all tested for strength and fatigue on the computer using the most advances computer-aided stress testing available. Bont bearings are produced in partnership with some of the best speciality bearing manufacturers in the world.
All Bont products go through a rigorous team testing phase before being brought to market. Team Bont skaters are the very best in the world.
When you buy Bont Skates, you get the best skates on the market.