Originally Posted by Schweino DWFII: care to share your thoughts? Ever seen anything like this?
It looks as if a part of the sole curved upwards
I just saw this thread.
I wouldn't want to be held to this, esp. without being able to handle the shoe and examine it more closely but, since you asked, it looks like slipped gemming to me.
Of course most of the "gem failure deniers" on SF wouldn't understand what they were seeing and thus the legend of "long lasting," impeccable functionality (translated as "good enough for government work") is enhanced.
To be fair, I don't know how these shoes (this line of shoes) is made. It could also be a case of a cracked leather insole, if the insole is even leather. There was a time when manufacturers were experimenting with a machine that channeled a leather insole in a manner similar to what would be done by hand. I still see an occasional pair of "direct welted" boots ever now and again. But because companies are always looking to shave pennies, a slight decrease in the substance (thickness) of insole or the impulse to use a section of the hide that was just marginally thinner often results in the machine cutting the channel a little deeper than it was intended to do.
If the shoe is then treated badly or dried out too close to the fire...or even in some cases where the foot itself generates inordinate amounts of heat and/or salt...the insole will crack along the channel.
Of course, this can happen to hand welted insoles as well esp. with the push to lighter weight shoes (following the standards of manufactured shoes) and a general decline in the quality of insole shoulders due to a greater demand for marginal quality insoles that are perfectly fine for use with gemming.
If it's gemming slippage the chances are the shoe has been resoled and the repairman just got it wrong--didn't know where the gemming was supposed to go. If the insole has cracked, it might never have been.
And to be fair again, even if the shoe is gemmed on cheap leather or fiberboard insoles, the insole could still be cracked and separated.