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Apr
13

Inov-8 Mudclaw 333… what a shoe!

After a number of practices, several local matches, and one major match, I feel like I can finally voice an informed opinion about Inov-8′s Mudclaw 333. You might remember I mentioned them in my It Must Be the Shoes post a couple of months ago. I can say without reservation that these are the best shoes I’ve tried for practical shooting, to date. Here’s why…

Two things are really paramount to a shoe for this sport – comfort and all-condition traction. In the past, I’ve always felt like I had to compromise. I could get comfort, but was limited to relatively low traction on most typical range surfaces. I could get OK traction in some surfaces, but frequently had to compromise on exactly which surfaces… and usually improved traction means decreased comfort. Up until now, the Adidas Turf Hog was the best compromise I could find. They were pretty comfortable, and gave good grip on the majority of surfaces we tend to shoot on. Adidas has stopped making that shoe, though, which prompted me to start searching for something new.

I tried on quite a number of traditional cleats, and a bunch of trail type shoes with varying degrees of lugs, etc. I found all of them to be lacking in some way. The cleats all were uncomfortable on my foot in one way or another. The trail shoes tended to be comfortable but either didn’t have enough lug to grip soft or wet surfaces, or were too slick on concrete and wood. Enter the Mudclaw. I had spied them a while back, but couldn’t find them locally. Designed originally for fell running, these probably wouldn’t be the first category of shoe you might look to for effective practical shooting footwear. The feature list looked compelling, though. Luckily, Zappos.com had the in stock, so I ordered a pair in and fell in love with them.

Following some experience, here’s what I can say… These shoes remain comfortable after being on my feet all day long. They’re light weight, but comfortably padded. They seem to resist moisture pretty well, but I have’t had them on in the rain, yet.

In terms of traction, I haven’t been able to unstick them, yet. I’ve watch folks wearing Turf Hogs and other traditional cleats slip on the same surfaces I’ve been shooting on. The combination of soft rubber and big lugs seems to be a winner. I even started on smooth concrete this past weekend, and was able to drop step on it without even a budge out of the shoes.

Add to it one other feature… With most shoes, the back outside corners are usually too sharp. If you try to shoot on the move with them on, your foot tends to slap down as you roll over that sharp corner, resulting in an unstable gun. Most of us have taken to introducing those corners to a belt sander to resolve the issue. The Mudclaw has an innovative “bi-planar heel” that turns out to be perfect for shoot on the move. The heel curves from front to back and from left to right, allowing you to roll your foot through extremely smoothly, despite the chunky lugs.

Sounds almost too good to be true, doesn’t it? Almost, but not quite – ’cause in this case, they exist and they work. In fact, the work well enough that a number of folks bought them based on my first review, and all of them report being extremely happy with the shoe. A couple of folks bought the Mudclaw 272 instead, wanting the red color.

Check ‘em out – I think you’ll find that these shoes are the best thing going for our game!

About the author

DaveRe

USPSA Grand Master, NRA Instructor, http://re-gun.com/about/

Permanent link to this article: http://re-gun.com/2011/04/inov-8-mudclaw-333-what-a-shoe/

6 comments

2 pings

  1. JD says:

    Several weeks back I read your review about the Mudclaw 333 and not being satisfied with the shoes I was wearing to match, decided to give these a try.

    Right off the bat I was impressed with how comfortable they were. At my first match wearing them I felt confident in my foot, which in turn allowed me to move faster and thus improve my times.

    Just like to thank you for the recommendation and on a side note after seeing my shoes one competitor has already bought a pair and two more are seriously looking to buy a pair.

    1. DaveRe says:

      Glad they’re working for you, JD!

  2. Wally De Leon says:

    Dave, your info made me decided to order a pair for me here in the Philippines. Am hoping to receive it within 2 weeks time and am very excited how it feels with this new shoes. And the same, wish that I would at least, fractionally, improve my games.

    DVC

    PPSA Member
    Philippines

    1. DaveRe says:

      Wally, I hope they work well for you. Athena Lee is shooting a similar shoe – the Mudclaw 272. It has the same outsole – basically, the only real difference is the color!

      1. Wally De Leon says:

        Hi Dave, as I promised. And tested.

        Your ideas and inputs were great, the Mudclaw333 gave me my first level 3 trophy (though only 7th place).

        It must really be the shoe; that gave me superb confidence running on Volcanic Ash, tiny black stones and sand as we compete last February (2012) in the foot of Mayon Volcano; Sto Domingo Albay here in the Philippines.

        Though my gun blasted out some trigger components on my last three stages, it should have been better.

        Thanks again, and hope others would see this comment string for the INOV 8 MUDCLAW.

        1. DaveRe says:

          Hi, Wally! Thanks for your feedback – glad the shoes worked well for you!

  1. DR Performance says:

    A followup review of the Inov-8 Mudclaw 333! http://is.gd/BGqDxS

  2. Welcome, Again Faster Equipment! | Re-Gun says:

    [...] a comprehensive variety of fitness equipment and accessories – including those fantastic Inov-8 Mudclaw 333s I told you [...]

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