Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots, Built for Fast Roping and Hard Use

by July 6, 2011 07/6/11

For the past six months I’ve been beating up the Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots and loving every minute in them.

They’re well constructed, comfortable, lightweight, breathable and have held up to everything from hiking, running, climbing rope and Fast Roping. Today I’ll give you my unbiased review of what I loved about them and also some things that I’d like to see different in how they’re made.

Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots

Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 08
All Rights Reserved by ITS Tactical While the name was definitely something I had trouble memorizing while making the video below, these boots pack a ton of great features! To start off, there was very little required to break them in and fit great right out of the box. They do seem to be slightly wider than other boots I’ve owned in the same size, which I really liked.

I’ve always found that most boots I’ve owned have rubbed against my little toes on the outside and I had none of that on these boots. This of course is my personal note as boots fit everyone differently and your mileage may vary, literally.

Construction

Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 03
All Rights Reserved by ITS Tactical The Spider 8.1 Boots are made of quite a few different materials, Leather/1650 Denier Nylon upper, Tuf-Tec Leather toe guard, Spider Mesh lining SuperFabric and M-PACT Sockliner. The leather and Tuf-Tec toe guard definitely added to the ability of these boots to hold up well in the brush while hiking and resist snags and abrasions. There’s definitely wear in these areas but definitely not as much as I feel there should have been, based on the abuse these boots have been through.

While the 1650 Denier Nylon used around the boot has held up, there’s quite a bit of fraying in numerous areas on the boot. While the stitching hasn’t been compromised where the nylon meets other materials, I’ve noticed the fraying is in the areas with the most wear such as the crease where the foot bends naturally and on the point where the SuperFabric meets the nylon on the Fast Rope System.

The boot interior liner is made of very nice soft and wicking breathable material, the upper is also padded just enough to aid in comfort, but yet not create extra bulk. Made in China.

Lacing

Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 07
All Rights Reserved by ITS Tactical I’ll start off by saying that while the laces are very strong, I don’t care for them. They dig into my fingers when I pull them tightly to lace them up. I wanted to give them a fair shake like everything else on these boots, but I’m a big fan of replacing laces with Paracord for more than just the lace replacement reason. Update: Magnum Boots mentioned below in the comments that they’ve replaced the laces with 330 Paracord and added a locking cleat.

I really like the way the eyelets are designed, with six on each side of the boot and a clear separation between the top three and bottom three. This separation closely resembles the point at which some people, including myself, like to skip a lace to take off some of the tension on boots and allow the boots to flex more. I think the way that Magnum designed the lacing is another reason why these boots are so comfortable.

Fast Rope System

Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPI Boots 03
All Rights Reserved by ITS Tactical I’d like to highlight a few of the features of the Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots, in particular I’d like to give my thoughts on the Fast Rope System with SuperFabric. We recently completed the testing of these boots by setting up our Fast Rope that we built and I spent some time looking like a kid that can’t get enough of a slide.

We had about 15 ft. in height to Fast Rope from, while no where near the 30 to 60 ft. typical on Fast Ropes, it still gave me a feel for the composite piece at the instep and how well they helped control descent.

The instep piece on each boot creates a nice pocket for the Fast Rope to flow through and the addition of the SuperFabric just above provides a ceramic laced material that helps wear and heat resistance. While after multiple Fast Ropes there are some wear marks, but nothing like what would have been on a boot sole without the added instep protection. The SuperFabric also showed no signs of wear at all.

I found the breaking to be significantly increased by simply locking in more to the rope with the system and allowing me to use less grip to slow descent.

Vent-Guard Sandproof Ventilator Technology

Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 05
All Rights Reserved by ITS Tactical Housed near the natural bend in the foot, the Vent Guard ports on each side of the boot help keep the foot cooler. It was hard for me to tell if this directly added to the breathability of the boots but I’m fairly certain it did.

With most boots, the natural bend point of the foot gets a build-up of sweat that’s a dirt magnet. Each Vent-Guard port has a filter layer that allows air flow, while keeping out sand and other materials. I found this to be an accurate statement and didn’t notice any dirt that accumulated on my socks where the ports are.

While these boots are not waterproof and aren’t marketed as such, the ion-mask hydrophobic surface technology does help keep the boot more resistant to liquids and I feel it’s also aided in how clean these boots have managed to stay regardless of the abuse they’ve been through.

Full Feature List

  • Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 06
    All Rights Reserved by ITS Tactical ion-maskâ„¢ hydrophobic surface enhancement – keeps the materials cleaner and resistant to liquids
  • Leather / 1650 denier ballistic nylon upper with Tec-Tuff leather toeguard resists snags and abrasions
  • TPU exo-frame reinforcement for support
  • Spider Mesh lining for comfort and breathability
  • Tested & certified to EN 20347:2004 standard for occupational footwear
  • Ergonomically designed
  • Metal-detector friendly with non-metallic TPU shank and composite hardware
  • Lace storage system on tongue
  • M-PACT comfortable contoured sockliner
  • Spider outsole with reinforced stabilizers and flexible toe fins to silently stick to walls
  • Vent-Guardâ„¢ sandproof ventilator technology
  • Fast-Rope System with SuperFabric
  • Weight – 2 lbs. 13 oz. (both boots together)

In all I really liked the time I’ve spend in the Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots and would highly recommend them. They’re available direct from Magnum Boots for $145 or through their dealers.

Video and Photos

Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 01Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 02Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 03Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 04Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 05Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 06Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 07Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPi Boots 08Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPI Boots 01Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPI Boots 02Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPI Boots 03Magnum Spider 8.1 Desert HPI Boots 04

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Lorenzo
Lorenzo

I am new in the topic of buy boots for internet. I don't know my correct size someone can help to me to find my correct size. I used in my sneakers 8,5us

Spider6
Spider6

Purchesed the Spider Elite 8.0 a yr ago...and their still going strong!!! Only wear at the sole, no where else. They are one Hell of a product. I wear them 95% of the time I have shoes on my feet. Everyday in a retail enviorment is hard on boots. but not these!! AWSOME product, expensive but worth it.

None
None

$145 for these bad boys? How about instead I go to a Army/Navy surplus store and buy a brand new pair of genuine U.S. Army boots for about $100 (1/3 less) and get just as good of a boot, if not a better quality of boot.

Made In The U.S.A., under U.S Army specs.

None
None

$145 for these bad boys? How about instead I go to a Army/Navy surplus store and buy a brand new pair of genuine U.S. Army boots for about $100 (1/3 less) and get just as good of a boot, if not a better quality of boot. Made In The U.S.A., under U.S Army specs.

Kris
Kris

I just purchased these boots in Black. I think they are fantastic. Only issue is sizing. These are the first boots I have purchased, and I got them in my normal shoe size, but they feel... not loose, but not snug either, it's hard to explain. Don't get me wrong, they are extremely comfortable. I guess my question is if boots should be purchased a half size smaller. I don't want to go throughout the trouble to pack them up and send them back in exchange for another size, only to discover that the original was just right.

Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Kris
Kris

I just purchased these boots in Black. I think they are fantastic. Only issue is sizing. These are the first boots I have purchased, and I got them in my normal shoe size, but they feel... not loose, but not snug either, it's hard to explain. Don't get me wrong, they are extremely comfortable. I guess my question is if boots should be purchased a half size smaller. I don't want to go throughout the trouble to pack them up and send them back in exchange for another size, only to discover that the original was just right. Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Biren Thapa
Biren Thapa

Can anyone from where I can get the magnum boots that are originally made in Vietnam. My current location is Bhutan near India.

Your idea will be of great help.

thanks

Biren Thapa
Biren Thapa

Can anyone from where I can get the magnum boots that are originally made in Vietnam. My current location is Bhutan near India. Your idea will be of great help. thanks

Kin
Kin

I recently tried a tac spec Hpi version to this boot and the right boot is giving me pressure near the inner part of the Fast rope system. Do you feel anything like this? I have since stop wearing it because it is not comfortable at all. I have had other magnums before and no problems, just this new one with the fast rope system. I tried a size bigger and not problem. Question is do these boots come with wide fit?

Kenneth Rushing
Kenneth Rushing

I just ordered these boots through Foot of the Rockies, Cheyenne WY 82009 they charged me 160$. Is that because of the new laces that Magnum added or just a bump up on the price from their side? Well I have a 12mile ruck coming up how are these boots for rucks? We usually have 65lbs altogether. I'm going Air Assault with the 101st too so I guess these boots will be good for me.

Corlissimo
Corlissimo

Nice write-up Bryan. I've been looking for a good boot that provides value without breaking the bank. Looks like these could just do that.

A question or two for you (or anyone else who may have the answers):

While these are considered desert boots with many features aimed at cooling, how comfortable/warm are they in colder conditions? I know they're not designed for it, but it would certainly ad more value if I know that these will work in conditions down to around 30F with some good cold weather socks. Any idea on this capability?

Corlissimo
Corlissimo

Nice write-up Bryan. I've been looking for a good boot that provides value without breaking the bank. Looks like these could just do that. A question or two for you (or anyone else who may have the answers): While these are considered desert boots with many features aimed at cooling, how comfortable/warm are they in colder conditions? I know they're not designed for it, but it would certainly ad more value if I know that these will work in conditions down to around 30F with some good cold weather socks. Any idea on this capability?

Gearshout
Gearshout

Another great review, thank you!

Terry Kowalik
Terry Kowalik

I've been a fan of Magnum boots for a long time (about 10 years) and while I do love the light weight and comfort, I have to admit that I don't find them particularly durable. I tend to have problems with them splitting across just behind the toe-caps (my feet are quite wide and Magnum doesn't offer a wide foot version of their boots though), failing side-zips and excessive wear on the soles. I do tend to wear them every day and go through a pair every 6-12 months.

Another problem is that they are really overpriced here in Australia (just like everything else that we buy retail) so I tend to get them online these days. Most of the ones I've seen are made in Vietnam.

Terry Kowalik
Terry Kowalik

I've been a fan of Magnum boots for a long time (about 10 years) and while I do love the light weight and comfort, I have to admit that I don't find them particularly durable. I tend to have problems with them splitting across just behind the toe-caps (my feet are quite wide and Magnum doesn't offer a wide foot version of their boots though), failing side-zips and excessive wear on the soles. I do tend to wear them every day and go through a pair every 6-12 months. Another problem is that they are really overpriced here in Australia (just like everything else that we buy retail) so I tend to get them online these days. Most of the ones I've seen are made in Vietnam.

Aaron McDoomsday
Aaron McDoomsday

Great article Bryan! They sounds and look awesome, and this is coming from a guy who goes through a pair or boot a year, if I'm lucky... And what's web better, they have a matte black version, with the Tuf-Tec toe cap !!! ;-) My Birthday is in 3 days as I was just informed... A guy can hope.

paul gosker
paul gosker

As another Irish man, who's feet get very sweaty, these boots are great. Also very light and great for foot pursuits. Ive used them for about the last 7 months (the black version) and would draw the same conclusions as the article.

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Brealy, it's in the article. They're made in China, I don't believe there's a Berry version. Thanks for the question!

Brealy Mason
Brealy Mason

Where are they made? Do they make a Berry version?

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Thanks Alexis! I appreciate you dropping by and mentioning the upgrades, those 330 Paracord laces sound like a great improvement!

Magnum USA
Magnum USA

Thanks for the review, Bryan! We appreciate your in-depth feedback. Just a quick note regarding the fraying and laces -- our product development team has fixed these issues based on consumer feedback. The new laces are 330 paracord, and we've also added a locking cleat to the boot to provide the ultimate foot stability. Thanks again!

Irishmanlost
Irishmanlost

Great review Bryan, I've been looking for a pair of desert boots for a while now and think these may just cut the mustard. Do they feel quite heavy/ bulky or are they lightweight ?

Ian Delmar
Ian Delmar

@ Kris

You may try to wear thicker socks. I have a pair of belleville 390s in size 8 that I still where a thicker sock to give that extra fit to them - I am a fan of thor-lo socks but any thicker sock will do (my Belleville 795s are in 8.5 so I can wear just regular standard issue wool socks with those no problem).

@ None

Although I am always a fan of made in America, I hate some of the standard issue boots out there. I was issued a pair of Type II hot weather boot (panama soles) and I hated them - they were uncomfortable to march/run around in and they hurt my arches. Since then I bought Bellevilles (390 and 795) and they are far better, especially with Magnum or Dr. Sholls shoe inserts =P

Again, not all the standard issue boots are the same model or manufacturer (some of the boots are better than others obviously), but some of them really do just suck. This is one thing i would happily spend my own money on (and splurge on mind you) rather than go with "standard issue".

Ian Delmar
Ian Delmar

@ Kris You may try to wear thicker socks. I have a pair of belleville 390s in size 8 that I still where a thicker sock to give that extra fit to them - I am a fan of thor-lo socks but any thicker sock will do (my Belleville 795s are in 8.5 so I can wear just regular standard issue wool socks with those no problem). @ None Although I am always a fan of made in America, I hate some of the standard issue boots out there. I was issued a pair of Type II hot weather boot (panama soles) and I hated them - they were uncomfortable to march/run around in and they hurt my arches. Since then I bought Bellevilles (390 and 795) and they are far better, especially with Magnum or Dr. Sholls shoe inserts =P Again, not all the standard issue boots are the same model or manufacturer (some of the boots are better than others obviously), but some of them really do just suck. This is one thing i would happily spend my own money on (and splurge on mind you) rather than go with "standard issue".

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

Corlissimo, these certainly aren't advertised as cold weather boots and you'd be better off with a non-vented boot for use in cold weather, as you'd want the insulation.

Bryan Black
Bryan Black

I'm updating the article right now as I forgot to include the weight. Both boots together weigh 2 lbs. 13 oz. They're not bulky at all, nor heavy feeling.

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