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shoe construction...behind the veil - Page 66

post #976 of 1515
I thought some of those who, like me, are still fumbling with the key concepts in this thread might enjoy this video of the making of a Blake-stitched, hand-lasted shoe. No gemming! A direct leather-to-leather bond of insole and outsole! biggrin.gif

Oh, and thanks, DWF, for the great thread and the generosity with your time and knowledge.
post #977 of 1515
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

Again, you don't know what you're talking about.

At any price point and with any variance in the quality of the insole materials, GY is always inferior to the same quality handwelted.

And "high quality thick shoulder insoles" is relative.

In the first place, no manufacturer uses the same thickness of insole as a a good bespoke maker doing handwelted would use. For the simple reason that such insoles are not needed when doing cement construction (and that's what GY is on some level). And as important if not moreso, the prime directive for a manufacturer is to maximize profit and all insole leathers are sold by the pound.

In the second place, few if any manufacturers use shoulder. In fact, I don't know of any tannery / finder in the US...even those importing from SA and European tanneries...that offers insole shoulder. Not even those...or esp. those...who cater to the shoe manufacturers. It's insole bends or cut insoles from unrolled bends. Fundamental difference and level of appropriateness.

As for the rest of the BS...people trying to learn shoemaking from Internet videos do indeed tend to use scraps. But no serious student and no serious teacher would allow a student to use scraps. That's part of the reason why apprenticeship programs are so few and far between--wanna-bes not giving the materials the respect (or the effort to understand) they deserve...which in turn needlessly costs the master the expense of wasted materials. You cannot learn shoemaking with scraps--inferior materials don't function or respond the way quality does.

I know from your past posts that you do not understand this...but regardless of what you want to believe, you cannot make a silk purse from a sows ear. No one can. No amount of advances in "material sciences" can change the fundamental nature of leather or the fundamental weakness of canvas. To think otherwise bespeaks a fundamental lack of understanding of the issues, the materials and the processes involved. Esp. as regards suitability to task.

--

Hand sewn welted is a superior construction method than GY welted.

But it is ignorant to equate all GY welted shoes as the same junk that you claimed they are. There are still nuances on how they are constructed if you look outside of the gemming portion. Specifically the way different manufacturers click, skyve, hand sewn aprons/lakes, lasting, etc.. Some of the floor workers do know how to make hand sewn welted shoes as well!!

Oh, we can always turn back the clock on time but the progress in material sciences is also evident in hand sewn welted constructions as well, from leather tanning to cement and threads.
post #978 of 1515

what's hand-sewn welted? do you mean GY shoes with hand-sewn aprons and skin-stitched split toes?

 

edit: just realized you meant handwelted (perhaps the version thats hand inseamed but has the outsole machine stitched to the welt)


Edited by sleepyinsanfran - 2/2/16 at 8:00pm
post #979 of 1515
Quote:
Originally Posted by sleepyinsanfran View Post

what's hand-sewn welted? do you mean GY shoes with hand-sewn aprons and skin-stitched split toes?

edit: just realized you meant handwelted (perhaps the version thats hand inseamed but has the outsole machine stitched to the welt)

Yes. Hand welted. Hand sewn welted. Same thing, slightly different terminology.

I am no master in the English language, but hand welted might allow interpretation room for machine stitched outsole while hand sewn, welted, doesn't.

Not old enough to give a damn.
post #980 of 1515
Quote:
Originally Posted by chogall View Post


Hand sewn welted is a superior construction method than GY welted.

But it is ignorant to equate all GY welted shoes as the same junk that you claimed they are. There are still nuances on how they are constructed if you look outside of the gemming portion. Specifically the way different manufacturers click, skyve, hand sewn aprons/lakes, lasting, etc.. Some of the floor workers do know how to make hand sewn welted shoes as well!!

Oh, we can always turn back the clock on time but the progress in material sciences is also evident in hand sewn welted constructions as well, from leather tanning to cement and threads.


Indeed, previously DWFII has himself admired on Styleforum the work of makers of GY shoes, for example G&Gs.

post #981 of 1515
Quote:
Originally Posted by thelonius View Post


Indeed, previously DWFII has himself admired on Styleforum the work of makers of GY shoes, for example G&Gs.

The master of exacting pedantry for things of diminishing marginal relevance. Sort of like economists where the assumption is of all things being equal, when no real world application actually exists where all things can be equal other than on a professors chalkboard.

Yup.
post #982 of 1515
Quote:
Originally Posted by chogall View Post

Hand sewn welted is a superior construction method than GY welted.

But it is ignorant to equate all GY welted shoes as the same junk that you claimed they are. There are still nuances on how they are constructed if you look outside of the gemming portion. Specifically the way different manufacturers click, skyve, hand sewn aprons/lakes, lasting, etc.. Some of the floor workers do know how to make hand sewn welted shoes as well!!

Oh, we can always turn back the clock on time but the progress in material sciences is also evident in hand sewn welted constructions as well, from leather tanning to cement and threads.

I don't think DWF has ever said that all Goodyear shoes are the same junk, in the sense of equally junkily made, with none made better than the other. As thelonius says, DWF has admired G&G's Goodyear shoes, I assume for their excellence in pattern-making, clicking, finishing, selection of materials, etc. Indeed, they score better on these dimensions than all but a few hand-welted shoes. But that's consistent with saying that all Goodyear shoes are always inferior in terms of welting and insoles to handwelted shoes. DWF is complaining about one (very important) part of the construction process, but of course there are lots of other parts on which a GY shoe could score better than a hand-welted.

The really controversial question here, I think, is DWF's frequent claim that with the choice of GY over hand-welting, the cost-cutting factory mentality will almost invariably set in, sooner or later. I'm not sure I agree with this, but it is true that of the old GY makers, there is as I understand it only one left (JM Weston) who use the cut-and-turn method on the insole when welting, rather than just gemming on a canvas rib. Some have argued that cut-and-turn is clearly superior to standard gemming. If that's true, it would be a data point in DWF's favor.
post #983 of 1515
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Testudo_Aubreii View Post

The really controversial question here, I think, is DWF's frequent claim that with the choice of GY over hand-welting, the cost-cutting factory mentality will almost invariably set in, sooner or later. I'm not sure I agree with this, but it is true that of the old GY makers, there is as I understand it only one left (JM Weston) who use the cut-and-turn method on the insole when welting, rather than just gemming on a canvas rib. Some have argued that cut-and-turn is clearly superior to standard gemming. If that's true, it would be a data point in DWF's favor.

There are lots of different varieties of pigs...none of which have ears that can be compared to silk purses.

The JM Weston version of GY is the original version. The inventors of the process were trying to find a way to emulate hand welted work. Why? What was wrong with hand welted work that needed changing? The correct answer is "nothing!" But it took too long and required a skilled worker who, besides needing to be trained over a period of years to attain that level of skill, inevitably needed a pension. Such workers were irreplaceable. A machine is none of those things.

So what, you may ask? It all comes down to money. Profit. The bottom line. And the fact that quality suffered was immaterial and beside the point. Because profit is / was the point.

Once profit...or any factor other than quality...becomes the point, nothing else really matters. Efficiency is about profit. Speed is about profit. Modernization is, ultimately, about profit.

Look at the highest quality RTW, GY shoes being made. Some are clearly lovely. But putting lipstick on a pig doesn't change the nature of the beast. How many of them have gone to celastic for toe stiffeners or heel stiffeners? How many have stopped buying insole shoulder? Ore reduced the thickness of their insoles? How many have quit using mid liners? The correct answer...in every case...is that they are all on the path. The downward path. The slippery slope.

And yes, at a certain level all GY shoes are equally flawed. As I have pointed out before....you cannot change the nature of canvas and give it more structural integrity. You cannot wish a chain stitch to have the strength and reliability of a lockstitch. You cannot magically confer tackiness or sealing properties upon paraffin. Cement construction is cement construction even if other processes follow--if the fundamental binding prinicple is cement, it is cement construction.

And even with the best of intentions, that movement towards mediocrity is inevitable. When a significant and sufficient portion of the industry stops using insole shoulder, another part of the industry--the tanners--stop making it. That forces the rest of the industry to stop using shoulder. When shoulder disappears other components, such as toe stiffs and heel stiffs, or welts...maybe even heel stacks...are compromised. Have to be made from some other material, such as paper or celastic.

And at a certain point there is no going back. Wyrd bið ful aræd.

The road to profit is lined with good intentions.
--
Edited by DWFII - 2/3/16 at 6:30am
post #984 of 1515
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chogall View Post

Yes. Hand welted. Hand sewn welted. Same thing, slightly different terminology.

I am no master in the English language, but hand welted might allow interpretation room for machine stitched outsole while hand sewn, welted, doesn't.

Not old enough to give a damn.

This is all just weasel words. A rationalization for parading ignorance..

"Hand welted" is the correct terminology for inseamed to a holdfast cut into a leather insole. Although some few (thankfully few) makers hand sew the welt to gemming.

Whether the shoe is "outseamed" by hand or not has nothing to do with it.

Those who don't respect truth or knowledge...or are hell bent on creating their own magical-thinking-version of the truth...never give a damn.
post #985 of 1515

Efficiency is not about profit, it is about achieving an objective with the minimum expenditure of energy.

post #986 of 1515
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by thelonius View Post

Efficiency is not about profit, it is about achieving an objective with the minimum expenditure of energy.

To what point? To increase profit...nothing else.

That said, even bespoke makers strive for efficiency...up to a point. That point being where it interferes with quality. Every part of the GY process was introduced to increase efficiency. With the sole purpose of increasing profit. And every part of the process that was introduced to increase efficiency, diminished quality.
post #987 of 1515
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post


To what point? To increase profit...nothing else.

That said, even bespoke makers strive for efficiency...up to a point. That point being where it interferes with quality. Every part of the GY process was introduced to increase efficiency. With the sole purpose of increasing profit. And every part of the process that was introduced to increase efficiency, diminished quality.


No, not to increase profit, nothing else. GY welting may have increased speed, and changed a number of other parameters (fewer workers, less expensive leather), and increased profit for the factory owners, but the goals have shifted compared to HW shoes. The goals have shifted and therefore efficiency hasn't increased at all, because whatever the product now is (the GW shoe) it hasn't recreated by a more efficient (less energy-consuming) method the original one (the HW shoe). Energy is expensive to come by, and nature uses it as sparingly as possible.

post #988 of 1515
Quote:
Originally Posted by thelonius View Post
 

Efficiency is not about profit, it is about achieving an objective with the minimum expenditure of energy.

To what end? Energy, inclusive of materials, etc, has a cost. The lower cost something can be produced, the greater profit can be realized, either by margin or volume. 

 

This is really semantic though and I am sure I dont need to explain this to you. It is curious however that you would make this the point of your comment when the underlying question in this ongoing and tiresome argument is very simple: 

 

Is handwelting or goodyear welting a better construction method.

 

Unless you resort to straw man arguments, it cannot be said that goodyear welting is superior. Full stop. Period. Handwelting is better.

 

Now, with that being said, I understand the reasoning for GY and most of my shoes are made with that construction. Some of them are even lovely and finished very well. They are a compromise of course, and that compromise is a matter of price and speed. 

 

 

 

As an aside, this argument has been going on for over a year now and we keep having the same discussions. I guess I am getting bored with it or perhaps just tired of arguing with people who I know are smart and understand fundamentally that hand welting is superior. Anyway, I am going to go put my soapbox away now. 

post #989 of 1515
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by chogall View Post



But it is ignorant to equate all GY welted shoes as the same junk that you claimed they are. There are still nuances on how they are constructed if you look outside of the gemming portion. Specifically the way different manufacturers click, skyve, hand sewn aprons/lakes, lasting, etc.. Some of the floor workers do know how to make hand sewn welted shoes as well!!

Oh, we can always turn back the clock on time but the progress in material sciences is also evident in hand sewn welted constructions as well, from leather tanning to cement and threads.

I don't think you have the experience or background or even command of the language to talk about ignorance.

It's a prime example of "evolution in action'"-the reason the world is filled with ticky-tacky and pretense.
post #990 of 1515
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by bdavro23 View Post


As an aside, this argument has been going on for over a year now and we keep having the same discussions. I guess I am getting bored with it or perhaps just tired of arguing with people who I know are smart and understand fundamentally that hand welting is superior. Anyway, I am going to go put my soapbox away now. 

With all due respect...yes, of course, it's tiresome and boring and drawn out. Ignorant people...who deliberately and intentionally choose to remain ignorant...are always tiresome and boring. They never really contribute anything substantial, because being ignorant, they don't have anything substantial to contribute.

But you and I are not the only people involved in this discussion. There are newbies and less informed people coming on this forum every day. They are not automatically bored nor put off by the conversation. For every person who is tired of this subject, there are two who are being exposed to it for the first time.

Consider my position...I am the focus of most of the dissension in and around the issue simply be cause I know...know...and have experience--years and years of it--that contradicts popular assumptions. Because I speak from experience, not conjecture or wishful thinking or Colorado-Pipe dreams. Because, for better or worse, like it or not, I have thought it through...carefully, in depth...and can articulate and substantiate the assertions I make.

And because I believe that it is better to light one candle than curse the darkness.

Now that's tiresome.
--
Edited by DWFII - 2/3/16 at 7:35am
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