363 and 358 are about the same length
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I paid $385 - $50 discount + $25 shipping for a total of $360 or a little more than AE retail. The box appears to be the same green C&J benchgrade box without a logo on top plus a S&H sticker on the front. No bags included.
The sole and heel seem identical to my benchgrade shoes. If there’s a difference in leather quality or construction I can’t tell it.
The stitching and perforations are flawless. The perforation pattern around the laces, opening and heel cap are identical to my handgrade Cliffords and equal in precision. The seam at the back of the heel cap of the Cliffords is reinforced with an additional row of stitching but this seam looks the same as my benchgrade shoes.
(Clifford top, Winchester bottom)
The leather quality of the uppers is definitely a notch below benchgrade and more on par with or a little above AE levels. I’m not an expert on leather at all, but there are a lot more little micro-creases forming than I’ve experienced on my benchgrade C&Js.
(AE Delray, Winchester, Hallam)
The insole and leather on the interior of the shoe seems to be identical to benchgrade with one major change - the front part of the shoe under the vamp and toe is not leather lined! The printing reads “leather upper/lining” but clearly the lining is some sort of canvas there. I must admit, his was a bit of a surprise. That part would be below AE standards as the AEs I have are all fully lined. The eyelets are all reinforced underneath like the Hallams.
This is my first experience with the 236 last. UK9 seems to be the correct size for me but it is definitely a bit shorter than the 348 last that my other benchgrade (Hallam, Lowndes, Westbourne) shoes are on. 348 is a long last though.
It’s a nice, well made shoe. It’s not to C&J benchgrade standards but it seems like a pretty decent shoe nonetheless. You get what you pay for and here they compromised on the leather lining at the front and the leather quality of the uppers. The other details seem more in line with benchgrade level.
Probably they adjusted the specs to maintein the same (low) price,
(They cost almost the same since many years, few years ago they retail for just 20 £ or so under C&J, now they are under 100£ or more!)
Regarding the leather quality I am not sure they are inferior only for the creases (that look normal to me)
Probably the leather is clicked in a way that use more part of the hide with less waste of material, but it could be the same leather used for benchgrade.
But probably we'll never know the real specs, the shoes are very nice and with great price/quality/aesthetic ratio, enjoy them!
How in the world are there really not creases on those? Do you float across the ground without walking when you wear these? :)
Intriguing. My Alden and Crockett and Jones I use shoes trees in. I don't wipe and buff them as often as I should probably. I wonder if my shoes trees aren't large enough for my shoes (even though they are labeled for that size of shoe). Do you upsize on your shoe trees to get them to fill your shoes out more to correct folding?
Sorry for missing that one... Shipton shoes are all made in the same UK factory, but we would not like to comment on the quality of their branded shoes.
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Edited by CandJONLINE - 9/24/13 at 3:36am
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