Bont was founded in Sydney in 1975 when Inze Bont, a recreational speed skater decided to fiberglass the back of his leather speed skates to gain more support. From there, the innovations just kept on flowing. Bont was the first footwear manufacturer to use exotic material like fiberglass in 1974, Kevlar in 1986 and Carbon Fiber in 1989, and the first to use heat moldable resins and thermoplastics. Bont invented heat moldable boots, and was the first company to make skates where the blade and frame could be adjusted on the boot. In the 1980'2 Bont dominated the quad racing scene with the lightest and strongest boots on the market thanks to our unique one piece manufacturing technique. Bont was the first quad skate company to use lace covers, velcro, and aluminum strengtheners in the boots. With the introduction of inline speed skates, most of Bont's quad customers switched to inline skates and our quad business died out until 2008 with the quad market resurgence, our customers again are requesting Bont quad boots.
A History of success
Bont won numerous world quad speed skating titles in the 80's and early 90's. Most of the US and Australian national teams used Bont quad boots. We now have also succeeded in other speed skating sports winning gold medals at the Olympics in short track ice speed skating and cycling as well as the Yellow Jersey in the Tour de France and too many inline speed skating world championship medals to count.
A one piece shoe is a lot harder to design and manufacture than a two piece shoe because the outer skin must be sewn onto the internals of the shoe and the design needs to work around the functionality. We always need to keep in mind that even though we produce these shoes in large numbers, they are hand made. We are dedicated to improving the look and functionality of the boots.
Every Bont skate is made using the same hand made process. Bonts' manufacturing is unlike any other brand. Instead of making the base first and then gluing the liner and upper to the base, we manufacture from the inside out. This results in a much stronger product. Where as most companies boot stitching are purely cosmetic, we use stitching to sew the outer skin to the boot. We call this manufacturing 'one piece' manufacturing because the skate becomes one piece and the carbon base can never be removed from the rest of the boot.
Our production line was engineered by Mr Inze Bont and it is not something that customers will ever get the chance to see, but it is a work of art. At every station there are one or two inventions that make the production of the shoes faster and easier. Rather than using generic vacuum boxes for curing the carbon, Mr. Inze Bont developed our own form of pressure wrap and baking that is unlike any other industry. Our pressure wrap system applies a lot more pressure than vacuuming can with removes a lot more excess resin and results in a lighter skate. It is the innovation in manufacturing as well as the product innovation that sets Bont apart from the other brands.
As our shoes are hand built around the last, our manufacturing is done without the use of any molds. This keeps costs low and offsets some of the additional labor costs involved in our manufacturing. It also alows us to make improvements on the fly. As soon as an improvement is discovered we can implement a change immediately.
With new innovations like using a thermoset resin to make the boots heat moldable or the use of thermoplastics, Bont has always strived to stay a step ahead of the competition. Our company motto is 'Lighter, Stronger, Faster' and each innovation that we make creates lighter, stronger and faster products. In quads, Bont is in the process of developing some very exciting new products including wheels, plates, bearings and boots that we will be introducing over the coming months.
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