Wesco Boss Motorcycle Boots

I’m an off-the-rack kind of guy. I don’t usually have things tailored. Same goes for footwear. I’d try on some size 10.5s and if they didn’t immediately rub my feet the wrong way, done deal, I’d buy them. Unfortunately, poor fit rears its ugly head after you have walked (and ridden) in a pair of boots a whole day, not in the one-minute test ride at the shoe store. Then regret sets in.

So I decided it was time for a pair of real nice riding boots, ones that fit correctly, were made to my feet, and offered good protection when riding. Oh, and did I mention they need to be tough as nails and last a lifetime? Tall order to fill.

I looked to West Coast Shoe Company (Wesco) to fit the bill. While Wesco has off-the-rack inventory of some of its products, I opted to try its custom-fitting program. After my initial meticulous measuring process (see page 58), I selected from the some 18 different options available, and 10 weeks later I received the “designed by Steve” boots you see here. Because Wesco boots are handmade by craftsmen, delivery times vary depending on workload and season, but I’d say it was worth the wait. Whenever I slip my feet into these boots, my feet feel like someone’s hands are wrapped around them. The arch support is in the perfect place, and they are not loose anywhere.

The gray Cambrelle lining is soft and comfortable

Mine are the 11″ tall Boss design in single tone black leather with a Vibram sole. I added options like the gray Cambrelle lining ($50), Wesco buckle on the instep strap ($15), black stitching ($25), and the motorcycle gearshift patch on the left boot ($40). Add on the custom fit fee ($95) to the base boot price ($458) and you have a hefty price tag. But I ended up with a pair of boots fit for a lifetime of hard duty, or a nice easy ride on a cruiser.

Truthfully, these Wesco boots take a long while to break in. I’d call these boots heirloom quality, but I could never pass them down to anyone. They were made specifically for my feet, and they feel the part. RB — by Steve Lita

Hard Data: West Coast Shoe Company, Boss Custom Boots, Boot shown, $683, 800/326-2711, www.WestCoastShoe.com


  1. I suppose we each have our own priorities and value scale. Being an average earner, nearly $700 for boots makes me lose focus in my eyes as the dizzyness sets in.

    While I am sure they are good boots, there is a diminishing point of return as the price goes up. It is hard to believe that, with more careful shopping, a nearly as good boot could be found for lesss than 1/3 the price. Maybe it is me but, I would rather put the money into something I want for my bike. After all, how much walking does one do while riding? In most instances, if you know in advance that you will need to do some serious walking, why not take a change of footwear? You are still way ahead.

    Just my pedestrian opinion.

  2. Mike Dowling says:

    i don’t think $700 is that bad for custom made boots. i’m not a rich man, my family and i are definitely middle class at best. i know guys who have been through 5 pakistan leather jackets pants and/or chaps, and 4 pairs of HD boots in five years. the money they spent on crappy discounted riding gear looking for that great fit and always being dissapointed they could’ve just bought a pair of wesco’s and a vanson jacket and called their shopping done for the next 20 years.

  3. Gene Marshall says:

    I received my Wesco Boss 8″ boots today and they fit like a tight glove right out of the box. I’ve waited 13 weeks for these to be made, but it’s been worth it. The overall workmanship and quality are first rate. I could own any boot, but after much research decided on Wesco based on the quality of this American made boot.