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can you tell by this pic if it is goodyear or hand welted? - Page 2

post #16 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by sklim8 View Post

DWFII
In any event, if I may ask a question, why does GYW machines choose to use inferior materials?  Can you not almost emulate hand welted if you use the GYW machines but the same materials that hand welting technique uses (am I making sense)?  Because it seems that while there may be differences in machine made vs. man made, you seem to focus more on the material used when it is machine made, vs. man made. 

The short answer is that making shoes is a business. And when you start talking about factories, job one is profit maximization and a lot of that comes down to cost control. If they don't need to use high quality materials, it doesn't make economic sense to do so.

Now for the long answer...

The original Goodyear machines did try to come close to handwelted quality.

Handwelted relies on very good quality vegetable tanned leather for insoles and of sufficient thickness that a channel can be cut into the substance of the insole to create a "holdfast"--essentially a ridge through which the awl is driven and on which the stitches are tightened.

So, to begin with, the the original machines used essentially the same quality insoles as Traditional handwelted bespoke makers were using. Two opposing angled cuts..."channels"...were made, by another machine, and the leather turned 90 degrees to the natural "lie" of the fiber mat. These two "flaps" of leather were cemented to each other to create a facsimile holdfast.

But bending the leather like this put a severe strain on the fibers and, additionally, the channels had to be cut so close to each other that the result was often pretty weak.

The solution was to reinforce the leather holdfast with canvas or linen.

Eventually it was decided that the linen all by itself could hold the stitches almost as well as the linen and leather together.

So the machines were redesigned to utilize a linen holdfast known as "gemming." The gemming was manufactured in rolls that could be applied by another machine which positioned and cemented the gemming to the fleshside surface of the insole simultaneously.

About this time it became obvious that a really high quality insole leather was no longer needed...the cement would adhere the gemming to a mediocre insole just as well as to a quality insole. And at the same time, since a channel was not being cut into the insole, a thinner insole could also be used.

All of this saved the factories money. Lots of money--both in terms of eliminating jobs that required skilled shoemakers and in terms of the cost of materials.

And once the shift to Goodyear construction was made the degradation of materials and techniques became inevitable. AFAIK no company that began life as a high quality handwelted shoemaking firm and subsequently shifted to Goodyear techniques has ever reverted to past procedures or materials.

Today, leatherboard and fiberboard---both composites on the order of particleboard or cardboard--are routinely substituted for components that were traditionally made of leather on the highest quality shoes, ie., leather insoles, heel stiffeners and toe stiffeners, and heel stacks.

Finally, it is my opinion...and it is an opinion...that the difference between a $100.00 shoe and a $500.00 shoe is insignificant. In all likelihood the materials used are not substantially better or worse and the techniques of manufacture are for all intents and purposes, identical.

Above $500.00, it is a crap shoot. And above $1000.00 per pair the biggest drawback is probably the Goodyear technique itself. Because when you come right down to it, the basic principle holding the shoe together is adhesive--it is cement construction, for all the misleading hype.

.
Edited by DWFII - 8/13/12 at 6:36am
post #17 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by mfais View Post

the reason i ask is because i was told that this is a handsewn goodyear welt construction but ive read here that that's an oxymoron as goodyear welt uses machines to sew on the sole and handsewing shoes shouldnt.

It is technically an oxymoron, but the reason many makers - particularly Italians - refer to it as "handmade goodyear" is that there are other types of "handwelting" - Goyserer, Bentivegna, Treccia etc etc etc.

If a maker specifically refers to it as "handsewn goodyear welt" you can be pretty confident that it's handwelted, unless they are flat out lying.

However, when they say "handmade" shoes, like with lots of things, the degree to which it is actually made by hand is up to them.

P.S. the shoes in the OP are handwelted.
Edited by hendrix - 8/12/12 at 11:44pm
post #18 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by hendrix View Post

It is technically an oxymoron, but the reason many makers - particularly Italians - refer to it as "handmade goodyear" is that there are other types of "handwelting" - Goyserer, Bentivegna, Treccia etc etc etc.
If a maker specifically refers to it as "handsewn goodyear welt" you can be pretty confident that it's handwelted, unless they are flat out lying.
However, when they say "handmade" shoes, like with lots of things, the degree to which it is actually made by hand is up to them.

this
post #19 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by fritzl View Post


this

so i was right all along?

post #20 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnnamedPlayer View Post

so i was right all along?

 

No.

post #21 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by UnnamedPlayer View Post

so i was right all along?

probably yes. didn't follow the whole hick-hack. waste of time, imo.
post #22 of 67
At 3:00, you can see (what I believe to be) the gemming, already glued to the insole, being stitched to the upper. At 3:12, the Goodyear machine makes an appearance.




More Goodyear footage: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TOrwF0Lhz9w


Some hands-on work @ 2:00.




This one shows how they do one type of closed channel at 3:30. These would be Blake stitched, correct?




Goodyear welting at 3:30 followed by hand welting at 3:45. Am I right in assuming that this must be on two different pair of shoes?




Some diagrams: http://www.wsanford-shanghai.com/?page_id=194
post #23 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

So, to begin with, the the original machines used essentially the same quality insoles as Traditional handwelted bespoke makers were using. Two opposing angled cuts..."channels"...were made, by another machine, and the leather turned 90 degrees to the natural "lie" of the fiber mat. These two "flaps" of leather were cemented to each other to create a facsimile holdfast.

Do we still have makers of RTW shoes, who apply the original goodyear welting instead of "gemming"? I believe I once read that Weston was using it, but I haven't been able to verify it.
post #24 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gruto View Post


Do we still have makers of RTW shoes, who apply the original goodyear welting instead of "gemming"? I believe I once read that Weston was using it, but I haven't been able to verify it.

I have read somewhere that Weston's Hunt Derby (model #677 I believe) is handwelted. That accounts for its $2000 price tag which is what I saw when I was in their Madison Avenue store two weeks ago. 

post #25 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by n-domino View Post

I have read somewhere that Weston's Hunt Derby (model #677 I believe) is handwelted. That accounts for its $2000 price tag which is what I saw when I was in their Madison Avenue store two weeks ago. 

Yes, some RTW makers will do handwelting, but how many will apply the original machine/goodyear welting?
post #26 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gruto View Post


Yes, some RTW makers will do handwelting, but how many will apply the original machine/goodyear welting?

Hmmm. I honestly don't know. Sorry for misinterpreting your previous post. 

post #27 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by Gruto View Post

Do we still have makers of RTW shoes, who apply the original goodyear welting instead of "gemming"? I believe I once read that Weston was using it, but I haven't been able to verify it.

I don't know of any. Most of the machines needed (and there's more than one) would be obsolete and hard to find parts for.
post #28 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by sklim8 View Post

DWFII,

Thank you so much for the explanation.  I am just getting into this whole thing and it is rather fascinating.  I bought my first GYW shoe with the understanding that it was a superior form of shoe.  Of course it was superior to the glued together shoes I used to wear (I would like to think), but now am reading that these are different from and less well made than hand welted shoes (I have no experience or knowledge to really say understand or realize).

In any event, if I may ask a question, why does GYW machines choose to use inferior materials?  Can you not almost emulate hand welted if you use the GYW machines but the same materials that hand welting technique uses (am I making sense)?  Because it seems that while there may be differences in machine made vs. man made, you seem to focus more on the material used when it is machine made, vs. man made. 

DFWII is among the most valuable contributors to SF. That being said, I don't think you should feel that your GYW shoes are crap just because DFWII has really high standards. It can be a bit disconcerting to learn that Allen Edmonds is not the pinnacle of fine shoemaking, contrary to what the JAB salesman told you, but they are still a significant step up from Bostonians. When DFWII says there's no difference to him between a $100 pair of shoes and a $500 pair, I take that to mean that he, as someone with decades of experience making shoes by hand, thinks that all sub-$500 shoes are crap. To the average joe, however, there's a pretty big difference between Alden and Bostonian. Put it this way. DFWII is like the guy who works for Bugatti saying that there's not a significant difference in materials or manufacturing processes in all sub-$100,000 cars. Depending on your perspective, that may be true. But to the guy driving a Hyndai Accent, a Jaguar XJ or Porsche Cayman is a pretty big step up. We can all aspire to hand-welted, bespoke shoes someday, but $2k for a pair of shoes is not in my budget for the forseeable future. So in the meantime, I'll be content with my AEs and Paul Stuarts.
post #29 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by n-domino View Post

I have read somewhere that Weston's Hunt Derby (model #677 I believe) is handwelted. That accounts for its $2000 price tag which is what I saw when I was in their Madison Avenue store two weeks ago. 

I just got off the phone w/Elise the store manager. She confirmed that they are.
post #30 of 67
Quote:
Originally Posted by n-domino View Post

I have read somewhere that Weston's Hunt Derby (model #677 I believe) is handwelted. That accounts for its $2000 price tag which is what I saw when I was in their Madison Avenue store two weeks ago. 

that's quite steep. let alone, that it is pretty fugly, imo.
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