MYOG Rock Plate for trail runners?

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Home Forums Gear Forums Make Your Own Gear MYOG Rock Plate for trail runners?

Viewing 16 posts - 1 through 16 (of 16 total)
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    Mike Stromsoe


    Locale: So. Cal.

    Has anyone ever made some MYOG rock plates for their trail runners to slip under the insole? I use Inov8 295’s. I absolutely love the fit and the super traction of the soft rubber out sole. What I don’t like is the lack of some form of rock plate. After 8 hours on rocky terrain the balls of my feet are crying out in pain. I can literally feel every pebble.

    I have no idea what most shoe companies use as a rock plate. I’m guessing nylon? The New Balance MT101’s look like some kind of metal, but it could just be some king of coating. I was thinking of ordering some sheet nylon from McMaster-Carr:

    Does anyone have an idea as to what thickness I should try out? I was thinking .05” but that might be too thick. I’m also open to other ideas as far as materials are concerned. Thanks.

    Colin Parkinson
    BPL Member


    Locale: Ontario Canada

    You could you try pieces of plastic from a gallon milk bottle jug.

    They are fairly stiff HDPE.
    Placed under the insoles they may work.

    Mike Stromsoe


    Locale: So. Cal.

    Sweet! I like that idea. I think I'm going to have a bowl of cereal for lunch.

    Edit: I just finished off my milk. My calipers measure the thickness of the HDPE at 0.022" Great! I'll make two pair, so I can double up if need be. I can't wait to try them out. Unfortunately, I can't go out till next Friday :(

    Ginger Allman


    Locale: Ozarks

    Look for those flexible cutting boards, they often come three to a pack for meat/veggies/fish. They're about the same thickness as a milk jug but already flat.

    The husband keeps meaning to try them sandwiched in the soles of his hiking huaraches.

    will sawyer


    Locale: Connecticut

    Another idea: you could give the insoles or the tops of the sole a thin layer of fiberglass resin to stiffen them. I also think the milk carton plastic will work a lot better if it is firmly secured to the sole of the shoe.


    Andrew F


    Locale: San Francisco Bay Area

    Some aftermarket insoles have a plastic sheet on the bottom of the foam for this exact reason. My green superfeet have a stiff piece of plastic that goes from the heel to just before the balls of my feet. There are probably some out there that are full-length.

    I have the Roclite 295's and like them a lot for smooth dirt trails, but for rocky terrain I wear Roclite 319's which have much more underfoot protection for about 2oz more weight per shoe. Most of the protection comes from the midsole which is quite thin on the 295's.


    Jeff Brown
    BPL Member


    Locale: New England

    I was thinking what would happen if you heated a custom foot bed from a plastic carton with a heat gun when you put it in the shoe. This might help shape it a bit.

    It might be a good idea to try, especially if you use some of the heavier detergent bottles.

    Edit* Or maybe a Superfeet hybrid because the arch is the only stiff part. Maybe adhere milk carton plastic to the toe and heel sections?

    :) I love this DIY stuff.

    jared bybee


    Any success with this diy project? I'd love to know how it turned out.

    Jeff Brown
    BPL Member


    Locale: New England

    I actually picked up a pair of New Balance MT101Rx trail runners. They have a lightweight rock plate in the sole and they work great.

    Jonathan Chin
    BPL Member


    Locale: Northwoods

    Anyone have info on home made rock plates? What did you use? How did they function?

    I was thinking of adding some to my Salomon Speedcross 3s. The fit and traction on these shoes are great, but long (15+ mile) days on rocky terrain just murder the balls of my feet.

    Marko Botsaris
    BPL Member


    Locale: Santa Cruz Mountains, CA

    Since lot of people on here are batty for carbon fiber, you can buy carbon fiber in-sole plates here:

    Three different stiffness ratings. I have experience with the two most flexible. A possible way to add stiffness to an otherwise ok UL shoe. You can get a certain degree of customizations on these if you ask. They go under your in-soles.

    Expensive, but will last a long time (presumably) and can be switched from shoe to shoe easily. If you try to mod these yourself make sure you have the right equipment since the carbon fiber dust from cutting and sanding is supposed to be very bad for your lungs.

    Woubeir (from Europe)
    BPL Member


    "Three different stiffness ratings. I have experience with the two most flexible"
    And what is according to you the most suitable one ? Is the semi-rigid already ok or does it still offer too little protedtion ?

    Jim C
    BPL Member


    Locale: Georgia, USA

    Edit: Oops, Sole Armor inserts are no longer being made. The maker cites the decline of the minimalist shoe market, but does not they’ll handle custom requests  I’d guess that’s pretty expensive.

    I’m playing thread necromancer here, but this might be of interest: Sole Armor  inserts for shoes that don’t include a rock plate.

    I’ve got no experience them yet, but I was pondering this question myself. A Google search turned up both this thread and the linked article.

    Link .
    BPL Member


    Art …
    BPL Member


    hmm … so people wear paper thin minimalist shoes then complain about the rocks hurting their feet … hmmmm.

    try a pair of Cascadias.

    Billy Ray


    Locale: the mountains

    Any insert will reduce shoe volume and change the fit of the shoe.

    That may be fine if the shoe is a little big or a little wide.

    But if your fit is a little on the snug side, inserts could make the shoes too tight.

    Thicker insoles can make a 1/2 size difference.


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