Review: FiveTen Maltese Falcon Clipless Shoes

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There are two different types of shoes for you to ride, flats or clips.  Shoe selection can be paramount with either interface you choose to ride.  FiveTen has been supporting riders with some of the best MTB shoes for the last several years now.  Their Impact, Sam Hill, Karvers and new Freerider Danny Macaskill are some of the most worn flat pedal shoes on the market – hands down.   We even reviewed the Danny Macaskill shoes not too long ago seen HERE.  This time around we clip in with the FiveTen Maltese Falcons.  More of a trail shoe for the enduro racer.

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The FiveTen Maltese Falcon is a SPD friendly clip shoe that uses a standard lace system with a strong velcro strap that secures the top of the shoe to your foot.  In similar fashion the Maltese Falcon utilizes FiveTens Stealth Rubber soles.  The Stealth Rubber is marketed to be shock absorbing and sticky, perfect for hiking and climbing through the trails and over rocks.  A good thing when you have a portion of you shoe missing and a metal cleat in its place.  The Maltese Falcon is a slim fitting shoe that offers a good deal of clearance from rubbing your cranks or frame.  Even though it offers a somewhat stiff sole, it is still flexible enough when walking or climbing the trails on foot.   Ours were ridden primarily with CrankBrothers Mallet pedals, which seemed to be a great combination.  The cleat engaged and released as it should with no interference from the shoe at all.  But that is not always the case, as we found out on a recent trail ride.  A fellow rider who had just picked up some new Time pedals was having some problems.  After a quick inspection and some know how, we made his second ride of the day much more enjoyable.  With different pedals you may find clearance issues where you simply, and carefully trim some fat from the cleat section or place spacers under the cleat.  In our friends case we trimmed some fat, as the thin spacers pushed the cleat our further than he wanted while walking in the shoes.   This is true of many shoes and more than likely not isolated to the Five Ten Maltese.  

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The Stealth rubber has proved itself as a great compound in climbing shoes.  Being the Maltese is a shoe you would likely where in trail riding or enduro racing, it is good to know you have a good shoe that grips on the sections where you have to get off you bike.  The heel cup and velcro strap keep the shoe in place well.   The full leather shoe repels splashes of water fine and the internal gusset on the tongue help to a certain level.   .Honestly there was nothing we could complain much about with these shoes.  Sure the laces are exposed and can collect dirt, but that truly is a minor issue, not even worth mentioning.  Yet I know some will.  The strap has remained solid during the entire testing time, without cracking or breaking at the bend.  The velcro has also lasted through many many cycles of use.  Something I complain about on a lot of shoes is the toe caps.  Many seem to wear fast, usually located at the big toe.  The two places on a shoe that seem to wear the fastest on the top side of the shoe, is the bend at the toes and your big toe.  These locations get the greatest amount of abuse when walking.  FiveTen’s Maltese Falcon has a great toe guard and extends it over that the large toe.  This also aides a little in that surprise rock or branch that reaches up and grabs your shoe.

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Over all impression of the Maltese Falcons from FiveTen – STOKED!  With a retail price of $139.95 they are not unruly expensive for a clip shoe.  Not the cheapest either, but you get what you pay for many times.  So with all the Pros this shoe offers, $139 is a great price.

Pros

  • Fair Price
  • Fairly lightweight
  • Durable
  • Great fit
  • Traction for miles
  • Enough support while still being thin enough to not rub the cranks or frame excessively
  • Comfortable

Cons

  • Still cleat / pedal interferance (but really how many different combinations are there out there….too many to please everybody)
  •  ….. yeah thats all I got.  Great shoe.

For more information on FiveTen, visit there site at www.fiveten.com
About WingNutt

Rider, Racer, Owner of MyBikeStand.com. A long history in racing and riding, from BMX and freestyle to Downhill, Dual Slalom, 4X and even some Road races spans nearly 25 years. Spent some time working in bike shops. I love to ride my bike.

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