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My Monk straps are creaking

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
I bought a pair of Allen Edmonds Concord monk straps and every time I wear them they make a creaking noise with every step. Has anyone ever had this problem and is there anything that can be done about it? People can hear me coming in the office form all the way down the hall. The creaking seems to be coming from the area between the strap and the tongue.
post #2 of 10
There was a thread about this (may have died) - I think JLibourel (maybe?) had a solution. The one I remember was sticking the loop side of Velcro to the inside of the strap so that would rub against the shoe instead of the leather.
post #3 of 10
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by j
There was a thread about this (may have died) - I think JLibourel (maybe?) had a solution. The one I remember was sticking the loop side of Velcro to the inside of the strap so that would rub against the shoe instead of the leather.

I started a thread about this same question about a year ago, but I didn't get around to applying any of the solutions and haven't really worn these shoes since then. I just polished the shoes again in the hope that this would somehow soften the leather, so we'll see. If not, maybe I'll try sticking some velcro under there.
post #4 of 10
Actually, I was the one who proposed the velcro solution. I have used this solution on 3 pairs of A-E monkstraps--the Saxon (the older one, a rubber-soled, moc-toe, monkshoe), and 2 pairs of Concords. The creaking you hear is the bottom of the monkstrap rubbing against the tongue and facing (opposite the strap side), on the one hand, and the underside of the facing rubbing against the tongue. The solution is as follows: stick a strip of the woolly side (not the hard plastic loops) of velcro along the length of the strap (up to the hole you put the prong in). In addition, cover most of the area on the underside of the facing (which contacts the tongue) with the same woolly-side velcro in maybe two strips. Cut the velcro so that it lies maybe .05" from any edge (and hence doesn't show).

When you put your foot into the shoe and cinch the strap up, the velcro will be completely invisible, and, contrary to what you might expect, the strap won't look as though it is being pushed up by something underneath. The velcro just completely flattens out, and the shoe looks identical to what it would without the velcro. With my monks, this has completely solved the problem. After a garrulous period at first, I haven't heard a single peep out of them since, not even a weak and timid one.

Before arriving at this solution on my own, I had contacted A-E about the problem. Their suggestion was to sprinkle talcum powder over the surfaces that made contact. This approach did help a little (but didn't completely eliminate the creaking), but was messy, with the powder getting all over the shoes, and, in a fairly short time, it all wore off and had to be applied again. I found it curious that this happened at all with A-E shoes--and that they knew about the problem, but hadn't solved it on their own with their monkshoes. The explanation I got from the A-E people was that it was the leather finish that caused the problem (hence the lubricating benefits of talcum powder, I guess). It's been interesting to me that none of my other monkshoes has exhibited the problem in the first place. This would suggest to me that it is either the leather A-E uses or the particular finish they put on it--and perhaps the inner-lining leather is partly to blame too--that results in this very annoying phenomenon.
post #5 of 10
Thread Starter 
Thanks a lot Roger, I'm definitely going to try this. Thing is that these are really lovely shoes and I haven't been wearing them as much as I would normally wear them because of the creaking. Sounds like the Velcro idea is the best solution.

Is there any particular brand of velcro you recommend, or any type of adhesive that the velcro should have that works best?
post #6 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by odoreater
Is there any particular brand of velcro you recommend, or any type of adhesive that the velcro should have that works best?
The velcro I used was just standard velcro strips that I bought at a building supply store. It is 3/4" wide, which works perfectly on the underside of the strap, leaving a little space at the sides so as not to be noticeable. It has a plastic-type backing that you peel off to expose the sticky adhesive side. I just used it as it came with its own adhesive, not adding any more. The plastic backing just had the word "Velcro" on it with a stylized "V". I had to buy the strips with the two sides--woolly side and hard plastic loop side--together, but I just used the woolly side. It's very cheap and was on a large roller in the store. I just pulled off a couple of feet of it, cut it, and paid a couple of bucks. With the adhesive provided, it holds perfectly, with no movement.

Since you have the Concord, let me describe a little more how I did my Concords. First, I cut a strip of the 3/4" velcro about 3" long. I stuck that to the base of the strap, starting at a point where it first makes contact with the tongue at the edge of the tongue and running it up to a point right at the first buckle hole encountered (which is the one I use--the one that is furthest from the end of the strap). Then I cut off two strips about 1 1/2" long and stuck them on the underside of the facing opposite the strap, starting them at the point on the facing where it first makes contact with the tongue (at the edge of the tongue) and running up to about 1/8" from the top of the facing. I placed the strips right beside each other so that they made up a square form. I trimmed a bevel on the edge where the facing curved so that the velcro structure would follow the lines of the facing. The net effect of this application was that almost the entire surface of the underside of the strap and facing that contacted the tongue was covered with the velcro strips. Actually, on the facing side, there is a small triangular area running maybe 1/2" ahead of the velcro that I didn't put any velcro on, since there was plenty in the two strips applied, and the thickness of the velcro lifted the underside just slightly off the tongue in that area, making it unnecessary to completely cover the underside of the facing.

And, as I mentioned earlier, it completely solved the problem once and for all. Good luck and let us know how it works for you!
post #7 of 10
Is this caused by a fit problem in the first place?
post #8 of 10
Thread Starter 
I just did the velcro thing and I'm happy to report that the creaking has been reduced by about 95%. There is still a very slight barely audible mini-creak (or, more like a single little pop), but I can live with that (interestingly enough, this little creak is only in the left shoe, the right one doesn't creak at all).

Thanks for the solution.
post #9 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by josepidal
Is this caused by a fit problem in the first place?
Absolutely not. Just the inevitable rubbing of the strap on the facing and tongue. A-E needs to change the way they finish the leather on their monkshoes to eliminate this. It is a common problem with A-E monks.
post #10 of 10
Do you think this would work with other shoes? Ever since I bought my motorbike boots six years ago, there has been a weird creaking which I haven't been able to solve. They have a cross-strap too (see pic below) -- perhaps it could be that creaking? I might give this advice a try.
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