CQ100721
Review

Giro Sector

Words Cooper Quinn
Photos Cooper Quinn
Date May 17, 2022
Reading time

I've pretty much always been That Guy, for as long as I can remember. Y'know the one who shows up to the ride in weird shoes? That's me. I raced downhill (poorly) in the 2000's in a set of Sidi Dominators. Sure, sometimes a bit more toe protection is nice, but so is not having your feet weighed down by a bad knockoff of a skate shoe that absorbs water like a sponge. Every extra gram you've got on your feet is a gram you spend a lot of energy moving. So I found it amusing when Deniz referred to Shimano's ME5 as a "dancing shoe"... Those are my everyday big bike shoes*!

So with that in mind, and my position somewhat typecast as the Shore Country Little Bike Guy here at NSMB.com, let's dive into the Giro Sector.

*I have, however, been on flat pedals all winter on my 2021 Altitude, with my current favourite being the Trailcross GTX.

Giro Sector Features

Upper Construction One-piece synchwire upper with thermo-bonded exo structure, reinforced toe and heel sections, reflective heel tab
Footbed 3D molded footbed with medium arch support
Outsole Carbon composite plate, Dual-injected rubber outsole, Stainless steel hardware
Weight 342 grams (size 42)
Lacing BOA L6 Fit
Price US$240

Construction and Features

While I'm not entirely sure what "synchwire" is, or how "thermo-bonded exo-structure" works, what I can say is that I quite like how the uppers on the Sector look, feel, and function. They're quite thin, don't absorb significant moisture, and over the course of a couple of months* show almost no signs of wear.

CQ100714

The uppers are supple enough for comfort, but the material has been very tough against cuts and abrasions. I'll be watching to see how the nylon loops hold up over time - I do have some questions about the longevity there as BOA cables can really localize stress.

I'm a BOA fan - tiny easy adjustments, lightweight, low profile, smooth action, and they've got a lifetime warranty I've never had to use. That said, the L6 BOA on the Sector is a slightly lower end version, so while you get the same 1mm tightening adjustment as the higher end Li2 dials, there's no ability to micro-adjust in the opposite direction, only the option to pop the dial entirely - BOA calls this "macro release". The higher end dials allow 1mm adjustment both to tighten, and loosen.

The sole of a clipless shoe is less of a concern than on a flat pedal shoe. The Sector has a fairly typical XC style pattern with tall, quite hard lugs on either side, and the toe/heel area are separated. There's the ability to add pointy metal bits to the toe if you're someone who runs up muddy hills or something.

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I realize the sole here is going to be a deal breaker for some folks, but it fits the Sector's purpose well. I'd love to see a bit of softer durometer rubber on the tips of the toe lugs, though.

Impressions

The Sector fits the bill for what I want it to do, and its design intentions - a shoe that's lightweight, comfortable, and stiff enough. They're quick drying, wearing very minimally, and look great*. For me, they're stiff enough, without being uncomfortably so.

I'd love to have the Li2 dials, which would add cost. And realistically I find in actual use I tighten shoes before I start riding, then once after a few minutes of blood flowing reduces the size of my feet a touch (the opposite of sitting on an airplane...), and I'm set. For 95% of rides, there's no need to micro-adjust looser. Having two dials per shoe is something I've found beneficial.

Riders who haven't been in a shoe with a sole this style are going to be in for a bit of a surprise at first - these aren't going to be like walking around in skate shoes. Given the option, I'd like to see some softer rubber incorporated in. Walking around on wet woodwork and rocks is sketchy at the best of times - however as is often the case, there's the NSMB caveat of "if you live most places that aren't the PNW, this might not be an issue".

*Dorky looking, perhaps? But I'm of the opinion that basically all mountain bike shoes - barring one exception - look silly off the bike. That whole "looks great on the trail and the pub" bit brands love to push... just face it. You look like you're wearing bike shoes. So they might as well maximize functionality on the bike.

Conclusion

If you're looking for a lightweight shoe that'll cover you for whatever mix of trail riding, XC, commuting, and gravel you've got going in your life, the Giro Sector is worth trying on to see if they fit your feet. They go head to head with the venerable Shimano XC7 on price, and I'd wager the Sector wins in the looks department. If you're looking for something a bit less 'dance shoe', I'd have a look at the Giro Ventana, which incorporates many of the same features into a slightly heavier more 'all mountain' package with one less BOA dial per shoe and a sole that'll likely be a bit friendlier for walking.

As is becoming tradition, I'll try and update you all on longevity/durability after some more abuse, especially if any issues arise - I'd wager the most probable point of failure is the lace loops.

Tags: Boa, Sector, Giro
Posted in: Apparel - Shoes, Gear, Features

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Comments

denomerdano
Deniz Merdano
1 month, 1 week ago
+2 Cr4w Cooper Quinn

Some hairy forest floor you got there

Reply

cooperquinn
Cooper Quinn
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Timer

I tried taking pictures on a nice mossy floor but you couldn't see the shoes.

Reply

craw
Cr4w
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Cooper Quinn

Must ... see ... disco ... boots

Reply

Sethsg
Sethsg
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Cooper Quinn

What type of skin is that? Too bad you never had an alligator skin, that would have looked rather cool.

Reply

cooperquinn
Cooper Quinn
1 month, 1 week ago
0

That's just a cow - nothing terribly exciting. 

Alligator would have matched the shoes well, but wouldn't really tie the [living] room together.

Reply

just6979
Justin White
1 month, 1 week ago
0

Great review! 100% agree on the Li2.

I really like Boa systems. Have it on my snowboard boots, my wife's snowboard boots, and my wife's cycling shoes. I don't ride clips*, so no Boa bike shoes for me, but if there was a good flat shoe that used Boa, I'd definitely give it a try!

But on a US$240 shoe, I really would have expected Li2. Especially with dual-zone shoes, since adjusting one zone might necessitate small changes to the other zone. I mean, on my boots it's fine because I pretty much only tighten them throughout the day, and the upper zone doesn't really affect the lower zone. I just pop the upper zone loose for walking, and both zones loose for lodge chilling, and then crank them both back down hard once back on the lift. But for a shoe, having to start basically from full loose if you accidentally go too tight, it's not ideal.

*(well, maybe once a year for the annual charity half-century road ride, but still rocking clearance MTB clip shoes that are basically barely used even after like 8 years)

Reply

cooperquinn
Cooper Quinn
1 month, 1 week ago
0

I think it's likely because they've got two zones that they're the L6... 4x BOA dials add up fast.

I'm not aware of any BOA flat pedal shoes, but also I'm not too on top of my flat pedal shoes, so perhaps someone else will chime in with a brilliant solution if we're lucky!

Reply

xy9ine
Perry Schebel
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Cooper Quinn

google says: CB stamp BOA 

i'm gravitating towards downcountry-esque kicks at the moment (just picked up some me5's after years of clipless dh shoes as my default). SO light, and BOA's rock. the giro's look good as well.

Reply

cooperquinn
Cooper Quinn
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Andy Eunson

Not pedaling around with anchors on your feet seems like a win.

Reply

pete@nsmb.com
Pete Roggeman
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Cooper Quinn

For the rides I know you do most (high speed ninja missions in between dad/family obligations) that style of shoe makes sense. You're not messing around with hike-a-biking or stopping, just clip in, drop hammer, and go.

Reply

xy9ine
Perry Schebel
1 month, 1 week ago
0

damn, pete. you've got me nailed. i did spend my formative biking years racing xc (in rigid minimalist shoes), so could be a bit of that influence creeping in.

Reply

andrewbikeguide
AndrewR
1 month, 1 week ago
+1 Cooper Quinn

Reply

cooperquinn
Cooper Quinn
1 month, 1 week ago
0

Cheers!

Reply

just6979
Justin White
1 month, 1 week ago
0

Thanks! The Launch looks pretty decent, I might put it on the list for when my Ride Concept Powerlines need replacing, see if they can earn a spot next to the RC and the Freerider Pros.

PI needs more colors though! The one called Flow Pop is only available in black? No colors at all, let alone some "pop" colors...

Reply

just6979
Justin White
1 month, 1 week ago
0

I guess since I got 2x Li2 dials on $150 shoes, I figured 60% more bucks would earn 4x Li2 dials. Hopefully they spent the extra on something else important...

Reply

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