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Calling all LLBean Katahdin Iron Works Boots owners - Page 58

post #856 of 1273
Just got a pair of Katahdins for Christmas, and I love them. They are breaking in well, and are true to size. I was looking for a good waterproofing solution, and many people in this thread have mentioned Sno-Seal. Ive done a bit of research on it, and according to an article i read, if you are planning on keeping your boots for a long time, and eventually having them resoled, Sn-Seal is not to be used, and it is impossible to resole shoes that have been treated with Sno-Seal:

"Designed originally for boots worn by hunters and outdoor laborers (loggers, for example), Sno-Seal is a waterproofing product with a large following. It carries one drawback: If applied to the leather used in nearly all modern leather hiking boots, those boots cannot be resoled, says cobbler Dave Page.

"You just can't work on the boots after it's on the leather," Page says of Sno-Seal. "Most hiking boots today are made of dry-tanned leather that uses chromium salts and chromium sulfates. Modern uppers sit down on top of sole units and are glued on, not stitched. To get soles to stick to the glue line, you have to be able to get the leather absolutely clean.

"Sno-Seal, Mink Oil, Neatsfoot Oil are all products that work fine as waterproofing, but they're formulated for oil-tanned leather--leather from 60 years ago," Page says. "There's just something that's in Sno-Seal that gets impregnated in dry-tanned leather. I don't know what it is. Once it's in there you can't clean it out and the leather will just not accept adhesives."

Not every hiker considers resoling their backpacking boots. If you deeply love a pair of boots and anticipate a lifelong relationship with them, though, it's best to bypass Sno-Seal. "I think Sno-Seal is an awfully good waterproofing product," says Page, who does not carry Sno-Seal in his shop. "It works fine if as long as you put it on boots that you don't care if they ever get resoled."

Source: http://www.rei.com/expertadvice/articles/caring+hiking+boots.html

Has anyone used Sno-Seal and tried having a pair of their boots resoled after using it? I'm curious, as I want to keep these boots for a long time to come.

Thanks.
post #857 of 1273
That applies to glued boots, I see no reason why any type of wax would affect the ability to resole a welted boot.
post #858 of 1273
Hey ASDF,

Thanks for the reply. I was curious about that as well, and didnt know if anyone ran into any problems getting the boot resoled, or if it was a completely welted boot, or if some parts of the sole were glued at all.
post #859 of 1273

+1

 

I had seen this same note earlier about Sno-Seal, but the big difference here is that the Bean boots have the soles stitched on (welted), not glued.

Kudos to taking extra precaution, but no worries in this case.

 

"Modern uppers sit down on top of sole units and are glued on, not stitched."  Not here...
 

Quote:
Originally Posted by asdf View Post

That applies to glued boots, I see no reason why any type of wax would affect the ability to resole a welted boot.


 

post #860 of 1273
Damn weird. I wonder if Obenauf's oil or LP will create the same problems on glued boots.
post #861 of 1273
Don't know if this has been posted recently, but 20% off the entire Bean website with the code EOF5121!
post #862 of 1273
Just ordered another pair. Recently realized that my left boot is slightly bigger than my right boot, which compounds the fact that my right foot is slightly larger than my left.
post #863 of 1273
Went to a store I had called earlier to pick up some Sno-Seal, and they didnt carry it. The person I spoke to on the phone thought I had just meant a boot seal that repelled snow. I was bugged cause I wanted to treat my boots, and it's hard to find Sno-Seal here, so I hopped in my Jeep and drove to the local Red Wing outlet. I spoke with the cobbler inside and asked him if they carried Sno-Seal. He said that they didnt and that he doesnt recommend that I use Sno-Seal as it doesnt allow leather to breathe properly, and that it caused over time the leather to rot. He told me that he isnt trying to sell me one of his stores products but that Sno-Seal just puts a wax like barrier over the leather, and doesnt treat it, as it is all beeswax. I asked his what he recommended and he told me to try their All Natural Leather Dressing. It consists of Pine Pitch, Mink Oil & Beeswax. He said that is what he recommends to all people that purchase his boots, and that they wouldnt sell it at Red Wing if it wasnt effective, and that if I didnt like it I could return it full refund. It was on 8.99 + Tax, and I wanted to treat my boots, so i took the hook.

263

Here is what the contents look like. Similar to Sno-seal in appearance, but you don't have to heat up the boot to apply it. I asked the cobbler this as well at the store, and he said to just use a dry cloth, or your hand, and it would go on fine. He just advised to make sure youre applying it to a clean boot as dirt is what really ruins the leather and the stiching in boots. As mine were new I didnt have a problem.

262

I put on two applications, as the first one really just sucks up the dressing. He told me that it would probably take two or 3 application for the first treatment, and then to reapply as the boot appears to be drying out. To keep a leather supple it should be treated frequently as you would your own skin. Here is what they looked like after two treatments of the dressing and drying for about 6 hours.

262

I really like the rich chocolate brown the boot becomes after adding the dressing. It has a really elegant look to it. I checked out the Iron Rangers while I was at Red Wing, and I really like the Katahdins appearance over it. Just thought Id share my little experiment with this stuff with you all. I might reapply one more application before hitting the road with my boots, just to be sure. Thanks again!
post #864 of 1273
Thanks for the coupon. It brought the price down to $143, which is an amazing price for a good US made boot.
post #865 of 1273
A coupon code @ Bean?! 0mg! Thanks, just picked up the Signature Wool Tweed Herringbone blazer.
post #866 of 1273
Quote:
Originally Posted by shade View Post

Went to a store I had called earlier to pick up some Sno-Seal, and they didnt carry it. The person I spoke to on the phone thought I had just meant a boot seal that repelled snow. I was bugged cause I wanted to treat my boots, and it's hard to find Sno-Seal here, so I hopped in my Jeep and drove to the local Red Wing outlet. I spoke with the cobbler inside and asked him if they carried Sno-Seal. He said that they didnt and that he doesnt recommend that I use Sno-Seal as it doesnt allow leather to breathe properly, and that it caused over time the leather to rot. He told me that he isnt trying to sell me one of his stores products but that Sno-Seal just puts a wax like barrier over the leather, and doesnt treat it, as it is all beeswax. I asked his what he recommended and he told me to try their All Natural Leather Dressing. It consists of Pine Pitch, Mink Oil & Beeswax. He said that is what he recommends to all people that purchase his boots, and that they wouldnt sell it at Red Wing if it wasnt effective, and that if I didnt like it I could return it full refund. It was on 8.99 + Tax, and I wanted to treat my boots, so i took the hook.

Funny...because people elsewhere often say that real mink oil is not good for leather and will cause it to rot. And if snow seal doesn't allow the leather to breathe, why would the red wing product that is also mostly beaswax not behave in exactly the same way?

I think most people don't know what they are talking about but since all of the products work about the same, they can get by. Its not that they are malicious, the probably honestly believe that one thing is better than the other, possibly even from personal experience...but when the sample size is one, anything can happen (maybe Sno-seal "ruined" a pair of boots that were actually made with faulty leather or had some other bad treatment while the next pair that lasted forever with red wing dressing was just a better pair of boots).

Who knows...I'm out of sno-seal so I am going to try some Obenauf's LP on some boots that have not yet been waterproofed (and then probably use it again when it is time for a fresh coat on my Katahdins). Nothing wrong with the sno-seal...I just want to try the Cadillac of boot-goop.
post #867 of 1273
0063f2df.jpg

3 years
post #868 of 1273
I wear these a lot in the winter ... they are my main boot for snow and salty slush on weekends and days off.

I sized up so I could wear wigwam socks and an orthotic. When it's really cold I can swap out the orthotic for a wool liner.

At three years they are as good as new. Good deal for the price, esp. with that code.
post #869 of 1273
Sno-Seal will not harm leather in any way. FYI, "mink oil" is just a label--it's usually made from lard.

The important thing is to stay away from petroleum products. I use Sno-Seal and Obenauf's LP on my boots.
post #870 of 1273

Can anyone confirm that the J. Crew boot fits the same as the LL Bean one?  I want the LL Bean one and there is a J Crew close by.  If they are the same I can maybe try a J Crew on and determine my size before ordering.  My tennis shoes are all 9.5's but I wear a 9 in Danners.

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