Review: Chrome Kursk Shoes

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BIKERUMOR.com REVIEW: Earlier this year, Chrome released their new shoe line with four models, the Arnhem mid-top, the Midway low-mid-top, the high top Saipan and the low-top Kursk.

I opted to review the Kursk since it fits my style a little more than the others, but they all share the same basic features.  Chrome’s shoes are designed to work well for cycling, of course, but also for daily casual wear.  Here are the quick specs:

  • Made of weatherproof 1,000 denier Cordura with back-padding
  • 100% vulcanized construction
  • Low profile design to better fit into a toe cage
  • Re-enforced nylon/glass fiber shank to support the midsole
  • Board lasted sole to eliminate pedal hot spot
  • Skid resistant contact rubber on the sole
  • Polyurethane contoured crash pad insole
  • Durable rubber heel cup with reflective safety hit
  • Lace garage so laces don’t get caught in your chain
  • Steel anglets to keep laces from fraying

The cycling inspiration shows through when you ride them, and features like the ‘lace garage’ and grippy outer sole make commuting or just spinning around a breeze.  I find myself wearing these three or four days a week, even when just sitting in the office or walking downtown.

Check out the full review and details, specs and pricing after the break…

WHAT’S IN THE BOX?

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In addition to the shoes, you also get some sweet Chrome stickers and that new shoe smell!

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The uppers are Chrome’s weatherproof 1000 denier Cordura and seem to be stitched together well.  Given their bag’s reputation for durability, the shoes should also hold up well.

2010 chrome bags kursk cycling casual commuter bike shoes review

The instep side has some vent holes to help your dogs breathe.  The tongue is padded, which makes them extremely comfortable, and the heel cup is pretty sturdy.  Never once did my heel feel like it was going to slip out when walking or cycling.

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The tread is so grippy it’s actually a little tough on occasion to slip your foot into a toe cage, but once it’s in, it’s not gonna slip out accidentally.  Even when riding on flat pedals without toe cages the shoes stayed put.  The rubber toe section keeps things from getting scuffed up.  After about a 50 days of consistent wear, there’s nary a scratch on them.

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Chrome’s Red Sole is well padded.  Unlike Converse, these actually feel pretty good on the feet by offering a bit of support and padding.

HOW TO THEY RIDE?

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The shoes have a nylon/glass fiber shank reinforcing the mid-sole, which helps keep your foot flat.  With softer shoes (sneakers in particular), your heel tends to push down and bend the foot over the pedals.  After time that can fatigue your foot and lead to discomfort on longer rides.  The forefoot, though, is plenty flexible, so walking is unhindered.

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The red soles look sweet…now if they just had some reflective properties, that would be awesome!

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For now, we’ll settle for the reflective strip on the rear of the shoes.

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This picture was taken before I actually read the details/instructions on the shoe (which is typical… have you read our review on the Light & Motion Seca 400?).  See those laces dangling?  Here’s the fix:

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The Shoe Garage!  Brilliant.  Rather than trying to stuff the laces under themselves, this handy elastic strip easily pulls up to hold the laces.  The metal eyelets should hold up well and keep the laces flowing smoothly as you loosen and tighten to get them on and off…which you do have to do to get them on.

BONUS FEATURES:

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Bonus feature #1: They go great with my monkey socks and brown leather ottoman…and my dog’s head.

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Bonus feature #2: They go good with my striped socks and blend well in Bikerumor’s casual office atmosphere.

BIKERUMOR RATING:

Seriously, I wore these for two weeks straight when they first came in, and they’re now a staple in my normal rotation.  They’re comfy, they look good and they work well on and off the bike.  There’s nothing I don’t like about them, and at $70 / pair, they’re reasonably priced.  I love ‘em.  Five thumbs up!

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Comments

Larry - 11/25/09 - 6:23pm

Only problem with this review is that they weren’t tested on a fixed gear by a kid with tattoos covering both arms and a face full of medical grade steel.

Alexander - 11/26/09 - 12:08pm

What about sizing? Are they true to fit?

Editor - 11/26/09 - 1:38pm

True.

James - 11/26/09 - 2:05pm

How do they fit compared to Converse? Same size? I have a wide forefoot and Converse fit me well. Other shoes tend to be too tight in the toebox. I couldn’t wear PF flyers for this reason.

Editor - 11/27/09 - 12:44pm

I’ve got a pair of converse, too. Both are size 13 and both fit about the same. Comfort-wise, the Chrome’s are much better, and the cycling-specific features are icing on the cake. They just don’t have the range of colors that Converse offers.

Peter - 04/17/10 - 2:43pm

None of the reviews i’ve seen mention how the shoes are with running. For going to school downtown i need shoes for walking, biking and casually running for the bus. Being able to play a bit of soccer wouldn’t hurt either.

[...] will be debuting SPD compatible versions of their Kursk Shoes. We reviewed the regular versions here, and the only change is the addition of the recessed plate for the cleats to mount [...]

[...] would be launching a clip-in version of their most popular shoe, the Kursk.  Bikerumor put the original through its paces, and awarded the shoe a coveted five thumbs up.  Needless to say, we have high [...]

colin - 03/17/13 - 10:58pm

Are they true to size?

Gary - 05/10/13 - 4:57pm

I love my Chrome Kursks! Just got my 3rd pair today. They are basically all I wear and I get plenty of use out of them. As I recall, the first point of failure after wearing them for 6-8 months is that the rubber around the bottom of the shoe, near the toe (the rubber part with the vertical ridges) tends to become detached.

I have roughly a 26 mile round trip commute on my bike but I only commute maybe 2 days/week at the most in spring/summer/fall, and I don’t use a toe-cage, but they perform well on the bike.

I’m typically a 10.5 but the size 10 felt better, where the 10.5 was a bit too roomy for me. The 10 are very snug but they break in nicely and after a few weeks they feel like a part of me.

When I don’t bike I take an hour walk at lunch time most days. Work fine for walking, for me.

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