Lowa Z-8N GTX - Särmä TST M19 Combat Boots
As a joint effort of Lowa and Varusteleka we're proud to present the Z-8N / M19 Combat Boots! We took the stock model of the Lowa boot and not only ordered a LOT of them but had some tiny alterations made, thus is born the "M19 Combat Boot". This model is available only from Varusteleka!
- Gore-Tex membrane
- Thick nubuck leather and cordura
- Injection molded PU multicomponent sole
- Speed lacing
- Weight about 1430 grams (3.15 lbs) for pair
- Materials and work from the EU
From the boonies to the asphalt
The Z-8N is light and manoeuvrable but a suitably stiff military boot. It's fit for use with the heaviest of loads, and in its element in proper military and outdoor use. However, it's a great choice for everyday boot too, at least during the cold and wet season.
The boot is lightweight and the sole system brings just the right amount of torsion resistance for all-terrain use. With a height of 20 cm, most of the fauna will stay out of your boot.
What's it about
Upper made of leather and cordura. The leather mostly resides in the lower region where most of the wear happens. Leather thickness is 2,0-2,2 mm.
Waterproof membrane will keep your feet dry while letting sweat vapours through. The membrane is naturally real-deal Gore-Tex.
Lowa's own Monowrap sole. Comprises of three parts: rubber outsole, a plastic stiffener and PU frame. The heel has a separate stabilization piece. For additional wear protection, the outsole rises up in the nose. The sole is injection-moulded, so it is not replaceable but has a service life of 7 to 10 years. This construction type also makes the sole very light.
Speed lacing with tunnel loops. Compared to hook lacing the tunnel loops are more straightforward and won't get tangled up, thus preventing tripping on them.
The fit and last are made Just Right. This means you can wear as many socks as you want and adjust the fit to your liking. Not the case with the standard Finnish army footwear.
So what makes these Särmä TST?
We figured the Z-8N model was just about perfect as is, we just had a few modifications done:
The sole is a bit less stiff than the standard model, so these are more suited for general use. To achieve this the stiffener inside the sole was simply changed to a more flexible one.
The tread pattern is more coarse to facilitate use in winter conditions. The original Z-8N is a bit slippery on snow, these are not so thanks to more clearance between the tread lugs. The tradeoff is that these will slip more easily on oily metal surfaces (police standard testing requirements).
The sole frame is solid black instead of grey and our Särmä TST logo was added to the tongue. This model is only available from us!
These are GTX boots, so use only membrane-compatible shoe care products or you'll risk blocking the membrane! In short, clean the boots with a moist rag and brush, then treat the leather with suitable spray-on waterproofer and then apply grease lightly. Apply grease only when necessary - if the boot is in heavy use, do this more often. If the wear is just occasional, be gentle with the grease.
Remember to keep the inside on the boot free from debris to keep the membrane intact.
Maintenance guarantees long service life
When properly cared for, the service life of the boot is seven to ten years - Lowa believes in its products so much they actually give these figures, knowing that it's rather difficult to determine a service life for boots.
The boots have a 2-year warranty against material and workmanship defects. If there's anything at fault, you'll notice it for sure in a couple of years.
Made to UK sizes, with roughly equivalent EU/French sizes in the brackets. Lowa boots are standard-fitting in comparison to many other brands, so it's advisable to start with your usual size or measure your foot length in millimetres (Mondopoint).
Lowa recommends measuring your foot for best results. If your foot is 265 mm long, for example, choose size UK 8. This leaves a suitable toe extra in the boot. Even if your foot is 1-2 mm longer, this is unlikely to be a problem: then you'll just have a bit less toe extra. In these cases, your own experience is valuable: if your foot is very wide or you want a lot of sock clearance for winter use, don't pick the smaller option.
UK sizes convert easily to US sizes, just add 1 to each size. UK 8 = US 9, for example.
Sizes UK 4 - 7 (with Ws-suffix) are sized according to the same UK standard as others but have four structural differences: Softer edging at the calf, padded tongue to prevent shifting, modified instep and ball area for a closer fit and a more flexible midsole. These features are commonly good for feminine feet, but the boots can be worn by anyone: fitting of boots and shoes is always an individual thing.
The tables below show the recommended foot length and for the smaller sizes also a conversion to US Women's sizes.
Sizes UK 4 - 7
|UK-size||Mondopoint||EU / French size||US size (men)||US Women (injected sole)|
|UK 4 Ws||230 mm||37||US 5||US 6|
|UK 4.5 Ws||235 mm||37.5||US 5.5||US 6.5|
|UK 5 Ws||239 mm||38||US 6||US 7|
|UK 5.5 Ws||243 mm||39||US 6.5||US 7.5|
|UK 6 Ws||247 mm||39.5||US 7||US 8|
|UK 6.5 Ws||252 mm||40||US 7.5||US 8.5|
|UK 7 Ws||256 mm||41||US 8||US 9|
Sizes UK 7.5 - 13.5
|UK-size||Mondopoint||EU / French size||US-size|
|UK 7.5||260 mm||41.5||US 8.5|
|UK 8||265 mm||42||US 9|
|UK 8.5||269 mm||42.5||US 9.5|
|UK 9||273 mm||43.5||US 10|
|UK 9.5||277 mm||44||US 10.5|
|UK 10||281 mm||44.5||US 11|
|UK 10.5||285 mm||45||US 11.5|
|UK 11||290 mm||46||US 12|
|UK 11.5||294 mm||46.5||US 12.5|
|UK 12||298 mm||47||US 13|
|UK 12.5||302 mm||48||US 13.5|
|UK 13||307 mm||48.5||US 14|
|UK 13.5||311 mm||49||US 14.5|
Made by Lowa
Lowa is a household name in shoemaking. With over 90 years of experience, they do know what's what. Many military and law enforcement instances place their trust in Lowa, not forgetting countless hikers and outdoors people. Lowa tends to keep a lower profile than many other brands but their products reach far and wide.
Lowa Water Stop Pro, 300 ml
Lowa Active Creme, 75 ml
Lowa Z-11S GTX
Särmä Wool Coat
Särmä Jorma Hunter's Jacket
Namaslay support patch, PVC
Särmä TST Recon Smock
Särmä Wool Field Shirt
Särmä TST L3 Wind Anorak
Särmä TST L3 Loft Jacket
Särmä TST 2P-RK Quick-Adjust Rifle Sling
Fenix AER Remote Pressure Switch
Outdoor Research Firemark Gauntlet Gloves, coyote, surplus
ITW MASH Hook
Särmä TST General purpose pouch Zip M
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Owen C. 19.10.2019
Eduard J. 28.10.2019
According to the instructions from the Lowa website, there's no need for you to actually break-in the boots as they're made to be that way in order to provide you maximum comfort and convenience, but they do optionally allow you for at least a whole week at least if you may want to do so.
Now going back to the boots, I made my way a couple of blocks around the city just walking a long route to test out the features:
Comfortability is nice and I love how it wraps around my feet and ankles perfectly as if it was specially made for me, despite I have been in the city for 3 hours walking constantly, I am feeling the stress around my feet but it doesn't make me feel like I need to stop since it didn't bugged me until I needed to take a breather. The molded soles work nicely and they are seemingly well made for a lifetime.
The Gore-Text lining did its job around by making my feet breathe well while being waterproof and the nubuck leather is quite nice as it makes the boots real sturdy. I forgot to mention I wore their Sarma Hiking Socks with the boots and they work really great together on the journey. Luckily that it rained while I was on my way home in order to test it further and they indeed repelled out the water and the interiors were still dry ever since I started donning them, so much for my clothes were wet of course hahaha.
However, I made observations on each boot and it seems like it was a bit damp on the interior lining below the toe cap so I took off my socks afterwards, I checked if water did made it through even in the toe area but it feels like it's all dry. I understand that there are some who doubt GTX boots for not being entirely waterproof along with other issues, but I'll have to find out if that was actually just sweat or is it really water that did made it through in the boots? I also sprayed them with waterproofer made for membrane shoes for 2 coats beforehand so I'm not so sure how that happened anyway.
In conclusion, I'm going to give it 4 stars because of it and I'll still do some further testing when I get to wear it again. Otherwise, these are really impressive boots to own whether you're into hiking, airsoft or you just want to own a pair of awesome footwear to go with on your everyday trails!
Mikko K. 15.11.2019