Just wanted to say thanks to everyone who contributed to this thread with pictures and helpful tidbits of information.
I recently went on a little Christmas-inspired and Poker-fueled boot shopping spree to get ready for the Bavarian winter and purchased the following boots:
Wolverine 744LTD (on the way)
Wolverine Krause (on the way)
Some inexpensive boots I found on eBay (on the way)
and a pair of Red Wings boots I found on etsy (arrived a few days ago)
The Red Wings boots were in pretty good condition for a vintage piece, however, it will also serve as my test bed for applying some of the techniques and instructions strewn about throughout this thread. I never really polished shoes because the military got rid of the black boots in exchange for tan rough-out leather boots and the old school black low quarters have been replaced with patent-leather equivalents. I figure these boots - while still in great shape - will be my work/rain boots and will help me get my polishing/maintenance routine perfected for when my Wolverine boots arrive.
Here are some before pics:
Does anybody know what style of Red Wings boots these are and what kind of leather it is? I don't have much experience with CXL or Cordovan yet...
Some after pics:
The products I used (locally purchased since I didn't want to wait for international shipping)...Anyone here have experience with Solitaire?
A realllllly old pair of shoes that have been my favorites for years...I know they won't appeal to many others but for some reason I love these shoes. Unfortunately, I got them when I was very young and knew nothing about shoes let alone proper maintenance. They were very old and rough looking and the genuine snake scales are starting to peel from abuse. I know a lot of places advertize specific products for use on exotic skins but I went ahead and used the leather lotion all over the shoe and used some of the spezialpflege for the smooth calfskin parts.
Also, I remember really hating shining my low quarters for inspections but, as some people here have mentioned, there's something calming and almost zen-like about polishing...I spent a few hours the first night and an hour last night working on the boots after working out and it is extremely gratifying to see something improve due to your own handiwork and effort.
Just thought I'd share since so many of your posts helped me. Maybe this will help someone else. Also, if anyone knows more about this style of Red Wings boots or has any experience with Solitaire products I'm all ears.
Edit: In natural light:
I realize the toe boxes are scuffed and damaged but compared to what they looked like out of the box I think I did a decent job.
Edited by GentlemanJohnny - 12/19/12 at 5:13am