By Doug Wyllie
Policeone Senior Editor
I’ve owned and/or tested a fairly significant number of boots in the past few years, and while I’ve seen great benefits to offerings from a wide variety of other vendors, I choose to spend my own money on boots from Original S.W.A.T. They’re light and comfortable and quite simply, they fit my feet better than others I’ve tried. During the first day of SHOT Show 2012, I happened to pass the booth for the company, and wanted to just say “thanks” for a great product. While I was there, though, I found something which might be of interest to CorrectionsOne readers — the new Chase Series boots due out on the market later this Spring.
When I laid hands on them, two things immediately sprung to mind:
• They’re feather light — almost lighter than socks!
• What in the [bleep] is up with these treads?
Like Sperry Topsiders
“One the most exciting features,” said Ty Fitzgerald of Original S.W.A.T. “is the cutting across the sole similar to what you’d see on ‘boat shoes’ like Topsiders. That gives greatly-improved slip-resistance on wet surfaces.”
Each element to the sole which contacts the pavement has a zig-zag pattern of grooves cut into the rubber — which are only plainly visible when you severely bend the shoe — much like you’d see on high-performance tires. These tiny grooves force water away from the interface between the operator and terra firma.
The moisture-wicking lining seems to be roughly the same as we’ve seen in the generation of boots just prior to the new Chase Series, the YKK zippers are top notch (as always) and the foam padding in Original S.W.A.T. boots is (as always) is light, breathable, and comfortable.
The prototype I saw was the nine-inch, zipper-side in desert tan — pretty much identical to the Original S.W.A.T. boots on my feet at present — available in March, but there will be a water-proof (no zipper side) available in September. Furthermore, there will be a low-cut version available too, although I didn’t get the exact date those will hit the streets.
The Chase Series will be the lightest boots produced yet by a company that’s already well-known for light-weight boots. They come out on March first. By roughly March second, I’ll be wearing my own pair.