Do you have a spare 15 minutes?
Because that's how long it takes to transform the Lake CX402 into the most comfortable pair of cycling shoes you've ever owned. Lake call the CX402 "the ultimate road shoe" and if you've been searching for a custom fit shoe then the Lake CX402 may well be the Holy Grail of comfortable performance cycling shoes.
What makes the CX402 so good?
The entire shoe can be heat moulded in your oven to create a literally custom fit for your individual foot shape. This means a fit for your feet and only your feet. The initial fit before heat treatment can seem quite tight around the heel, but this is an intentional feature of Lake's design. The heel softens after a brief heating process in a domestic oven so that it will wrap around your heel during the cooling process. The result is nothing short of astounding. The heel grips so well that there is far less need to have a tight fitting around the tongue area of the shoe, which in turn reduces the chance of "hot spots" produced by excessively tight strap tightening around the dorsum of the foot. The shoe can be remoulded as neccessary to allow for changes in foot size or even thicker winter socks! Unlike some other manufacturers mouldable shoes the Lake system really does work to provide a shoe that will fit you as only a true custom fit shoe can do.
How does it perform in the real world?
The ride after heat moulding is nothing short of incredible. The stiffness and shape of the sole connect you to the pedal like nothing else and gives a superb fliud motion that makes pedalling both easier and more powerful. The heel gripped the foot so well and made such a difference that it was hard to believe that anyone ever produced a shoe without this feature. After years of tightening the straps to achieve a tight fit it was a revelation to find out how much grip and comfort a custom fitted heel can make.
This shoe really is a game changer. In a world of incremental change it's refreshing to find a true leap forward.
The CX402 is the successor to Lake's highly regarded CX401 and keeps the unique K-Lite Kangaroo Leather and 100% carbon mouldable sole. The BOA closure mechanism has been vastly improved by the use of 2 power reels and strap instead of a single BOA reel and a strap, but othewise the CX402 has stayed true to a design that has been described by bikeradar.com/au as "beautifully crafted, supple uppers with an aggressive sole" (4 out of 5 stars). In fact the CX401 is so good that Lake have kept it on as part of their Custom Program which offers consumers the oppurtunity to design their own shoe in a range of custom colours.
Dutch company Lake have been producing cycling shoes for more than 30 years and have always been innovators. Lake were the 1st to develop a MTB specific shoe, the 1st Cyclocross specific shoe with replaceable spikes, 1st (& still only real) Winter cycling boot, 1st to introduce custom shoe program, and in 2005 Lake were the 1st to introduce a heat mouldable carbon production cycling shoe. All of Lake's considerable experience and technical expertise has culminated in the CX402, a true custom heat mouldable carbon shoe that is at the apex of modern cycling shoe technology and design.
A word of warning though. The Lake CX402 does require heat mouding to produce a comfortable fit. Without heat treatment this shoe will not realise it's full potential and will be unlikely to be comfortable. So if the heat moulding process seems to be a little too excessive then we suggest trying a different shoe. Cutting edge innovation and technical comfort are not for everyone. But if you're willing to follow Lake's heat moulding method then you can look forward to a phenomonal level of comfort and performance.