The not-so-minor details
Well-featured shoe for trail riders.
BOA closure makes for speed and accurate fitting.
Plenty of grip and stiffness.
BOA dial can pop open if snagged.
No toe-box reinforcement might worry some.
Fi’zi:k (god that word is a pain to type, let’s just go with Fizik) are best known in the cycling world for their fantastic saddles. Their Gobi might just be the most legendary mountain bike butt perch ever. In recent times Fizik have expanded from components to foot wear; they initially launched on the road with some super stylish kangaroo leather kicks, and over the past couple of years they’ve been making mountain bike shoes too.
BOA and two Velcro straps. With our narrow feet, the straps were a little long, but that’s better than too short, and nothing a sharp pair of scissors can’t neaten up.
The M6B Uomo is one three shoes in Fizik’s mountain bike line, at $239 they sit at mid-to-upper spot on the price spectrum, and their features are competitive. We think they’re a great looking shoe too, but what else would you expect from the Italians?
The BOA dial makes adjusting the fit very fast, and the system doesn’t collect mud either. The dial’s position is a bit vulnerable to being popped open we found. Note the chunky rubber on the outer edge of the mid-sole, perfect safety for those times you miss a pedal.
You’ll notice the BOA dial. This system has become incredibly popular lately, thanks to its ease of use, ability to make precise fit adjustments, and its clean styling. Turn the dial to tighten, pull it out away from the shoe to undo and release the tension on the ‘laces’. It’s good system and easy to adjust on the fly, but we found the placement of the dial meant we occasionally snagged it in scrub (particularly if we had to hike-a-bike) which would pop the BOA release open and leave the shoe undone.
Simple Velrco straps provide the rest of the closure. Our tester has quite narrow feet, and the straps had no problems accommodating this, though we eventually trimmed them the straps a little just to stop the ends from dangling.
Reinforced Microtex is used for much of the upper.
Construction wise, these are certainly a trail shoe, but they’re also quite lightweight at 385g for a size 42.5. There’s a plenty of grip provided all round, including across the mid-sole, which helps prevent disaster if you accidentally miss a clip-in. Provisions are there for toe spikes as well, which is cool if you’re going to use these shoes for a bit of CX work. The toe box doesn’t have a lot of external protection, which might deter some who ride hard in rocky terrain, but the reinforced Microtex material isn’t displaying any signs of wear or damage so far.
With Shimano XT pedals, the connection between pedal and shoe was tight at first, but soon wore in to provide an ideal amount of friction.
We ran these shoes with Shimano XT Trail pedals, and initially there was a lot of friction between the chunky tread blocks and pedal body. Luckily over the course of a few rides, the rubber wore down a smidge making for consistent entry/exit into the pedals.
We had no dramas getting our cleat position where we wanted it, and found the sole provided a good blend of stiffness, comfort and grip.
The nylon sole is carbon reinforced, but stiffness isn’t the main objective of this shoe (look at the M3B Uomo with carbon soles if stiffness is your priority) and they’ve got just enough flex to be comfy when you need to walk, without feeling floppy when you’re on the gas. Around the heel, the fit is super secure, and we didn’t feel any heel slippage at all. If you’ve got high arches, you might want to consider a different in-sole, as the foot bed shape is pretty flat, otherwise we found the fit to be very comfortable.
All up, we think these are a great option for trail riders, and a fine alternative from some of the more mainstream shoe brands. With a good blend of weight, stiffness, grip and inoffensive styling, we’re a fan!