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Luscombe

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RE @pransom Natty Veggy Tan
Same QC Issues- Different Manufacturer- One Year update

First, my Apologies to the thread as these are not Whites Boots. They are a $400 custom order pair, Made in USA, hand-sewn 10 oz Natty Veggy Tanned Mocs Size 10.5B. My experience with these is similar to experiences with White's products.

The photos show how they looked when they arrived and how they look now after one year. I wanted to provide @pransom with some aged patina shots so he can better visualize how his boots might look. While I agree that there needed to be more attention given to his boots to clean them before shipping, I don't think they warrant a return.

On these shoes, QC wise, the top-down shot shoes the right shoe with the blucher sewn about 1/4"-3/8" further forward than the left. This makes it seem shorter than the left shoe. The soles appear to be the same length. As an aside, the inside of the right shoe is stamped 10B and the left shoe is stamped 10.5B. The rest of the leather and stitching appeared fine but I questioned the sizing as they looked different and felt different on my feet.

I spoke to the manufacturer and then returned them for their review. They reviewed them and said the right shoe was mis-stamped, it should have been stamped 10.5B. They then sent the shoes back to me.

They still felt weird, I did not want to push it with the manufacturer. I think the issue with the shoes is more size than construction quality. I measure an 11B on the Brannock and should have ordered 11B. The common practice with these Mocs is to downsize 1/2 to allow for stretching, especially if it is CXL. This shoe has more structure and is stiffer due to the leather thickness so the break is not across the ball of my foot and the soft sole and squishy heel created other issues. I ultimately cut off the heel and converted the soles to more of a camp moc and that solved most of the discomfort.

Mail ordering shoes and boots, especially handmade ones is a risky business. It is tough enough to have to go through multiple pairs to get the last and fit dialed in. I get that the supply chain is broken and this has been a challenging year to say the least and as a result, we need to dial back some of our expectations.
That said, we should not have to be concerned with real quality defects on boots and shoes at the price point of these. I too expect better out of Whites and Bakers.

Yeah, and here is hoping that my HH SD's en route, will represent the best of White's work. One of the reasons they are this late is one boot had to be remade. Apparently, their QC caught that one.

This Photo shows the length difference. Shoes are about 4 months old at this point. I routinely left them in the sun to enhance the patina.
20200727_202932.jpg


This is what they looked like out of the box.
DE New 1.jpg


Out of the box and on my feet, June 2020. Right blucher is closer to the front.
DE New 3.jpg



This is how they look in the sun today. Incredible Patina that does hide a lot of scuffs.


20210619_134207.jpg
20210619_134306.jpg
 

wordfool

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@DG123 's post and @prasom 's issue is a good example of the dichotomy between a work boot company and a fashion boot company. It has been debated ad nauseam here before, but at the danger of reploughing old ground, to me it comes down to this:

1) Is White's going to be a workboot company or a fashion boot company? @DG123's comment about these being workboots and drawing a comparison to a pair of bespoke English shoes seems a little bit disingenuous... when White's chose to offer the veg tan and latigo leathers from W&C they knew, as did their customers, that these were fashion leathers, not work leathers, and their customers would put them to such use.

2) If White's is going to offer a clearly fashion leather, in natural veg tan,and charge $700 for a pair of boots, they have to have known aesthetics would be important to the consumer, and should have taken more care to meet customer expectations. White's chose to enter this market, and there is nothing wrong with holding White's accountable to that higher standard of quality and aesthetics.

3) Again I find myself coming back to simple QC... it is understandable how this happened, everyone makes mistakes... BUT HOW THE HECK DID THIS NOT GET CAUGHT IN QC INSPECTION? Either at Whites, or at Bakers. The fact that this shipped to the customer tells me one of two things: 1) Either White's or Bakers does not perform visual QC on their final product (very troubling); or 2) They did perform visual QC and determined not once, but twice that this was "acceptable" (potentially even more troubling)... who is running things over there?

I debated posting this, but decided to make my position clear... I respect other opinions, and surely we will hear the usual excuses:

1) How Covid has made things hard for White's;
2) How good help is hard to find;
3) How American manufacturing in general is in decline;
4) How we should give them a break because times are hard;
5) How we should expect and accept this because these are hand made;
6) How we should give them a break because they are a "boot company";
7) How Kyle and Baker's will "make it right" (this one is especially hard to swallow... there is never time to do it right, but always time to do it twice... while the customer waits another 12 weeks for a pair of boots)

There comes a time when if the best accolade one can give is, "Boy they have really poor quality, but when the customer points it out, they are always willing to fix it", a business needs to take a look at the fundamentals of its business model.

It reminds me of the old saying, "We lose money on each transaction, but we will make it up on volume!"

Bottom line, we have been discussing this trend for 5 years... seems like that is plenty of time to get this fashion/workboot thing figured out...

Don't get me wrong, I love White's... when they get it right, they really get it right... but it is because I love the brand so much that I am willing to be critical of them when necessary... I want them to be better... because I know they can be.
Nice treatise, although I fear it's a subject that will continue to crop up as those new to White's discover the joys of the QC lottery.

I've also long-since concluded that whatever QC inspections White's does (if any) set the "acceptable" bar far lower than most people here would consider appropriate, probably because the handful of gripes on this thread no doubt reflect just a tiny fraction of a customer base that generally either doesn't care about, or doesn't notice, Stevie Wonder stitching, wonky lasting, different sized toe caps, etc. etc.

After buying six pairs of White's I know my QC outrage has become far more subdued than it once was and my tolerance for "character" in a pair of White's boots has increased. In fact I kinda like the fact that the boots are each so unique. One could almost say it sort of adds a bit of that handmade artisanal (is that still a thing?) cred and certainly makes me worry less about dings and scrapes since the boots are already less than perfect out of the box
 
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prasom

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@prasom - Congrats on the killer LTT boots in the amazing W&C Natural Veg Tan. There is SO much potential in that leather & is a blank canvas for you to mold.

That said, you clearly have some clicking & finish deficiencies. IMHO, they are not deal breakers though. The smudges are a minor annoyance in the transformation the leather is going to take on. The clicking flaws are certainly not easy on the eye, but it appears they are in places not easily seen. If the fit is good & youre willing to let time melt those flaws Id say keep them. In 6 months I suspect you wouldn't be able to tell the difference between them and a "perfect" pair.

I don't think anyone would fault you if you requested a rebuild though. Trust your gut. In my experience, it can really nag on you if let the issue slide.


@Legal Eagles - I hear you brother. I gave Whites the Donald Trump treatment; indefinite suspension. Never thought Id ever be in that place but Ive experienced several of the same issues first hand. If it wasn't for their god-tier customer service Id have wrote them off completely and never looked back. One of my very favorite pairs of Horse Hide Bounty Hunters was sent in on warranty for a squeak. They cut them down to single row/close trim and did a hack job on the finish/clicking. I could begrudgingly live with that but they moved the damn Arch-Ease back in my right boot so that it sits nearly in my heal. It's fvcking uncomfortable so I hardly wear them anymore. It pisses me off every time I look at em'.
SMH
Id really like to order some of that W&C veg tan in a Semi Dress but I ain't drop'n that much coin to roll the dice and wait for possibly 6 months
I hear you both @hoppyipa @legaleagle
The only reason i am not sending this back right away and writing them off is due to the customer service i got plus the i did a heck of lot of research before jumping in to a $700 pair from wearing 150$ nikes. My reaserch (ie all your wisdom in this forum) preared me for situation like this. I am not wealthy enough to write off $700 without any inquiry. But imagine someone who bought a pair just coz the like them without any further digging. They would never give a second chance to a first impression like this.
This again tie in with what legaleagle said. What is the business model and principle you want to operate in?
I informed Bakers and going to see what pans out. I waited 16 weeks for the build and took about another 8 to finalize sizing. It is not fAir to return it without any effort from my part to get the situation sorted out.
 

wordfool

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Couple of build-related questions for all you good folks to help me decide if I really want or need a pair of distressed RO boots:

1/ Would a Quabaug heel cap look weird with a Vibram 100 sole?
2/ Would a block heel look weirdly huge with a fat ol' Vibram 100 heel cap?
3/ How much faster does the Honey Vibram 100 sole wear compared to the standard black version?
4/ Does the distressed leather (smooth or RO) run any cooler or more comfortable than the oil-tan brown/black?

Still trying to decide on 6" BHs or SDs (with a Vibram 100 sole) for a general outdoor work/travel boot. All my other boots are darker leather and/or leather I'd prefer not to trash so it would be nice to have some more mid-brown shit-kickers so I can perhaps retire my less comfy Iron Rangers.
 

hoppy_IPA

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@Luscombe - those Moc’s are FIIIRRE 🔥🔥🔥

can you PM details please? Im a 12D on the 55 last so if you can help me on the sizing I’d appreciate it🍻
 

MeatFish

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Looking to order my first pair of White’s to have something made up similar to this.
86AC19D8-0035-486A-AF2B-5254455CE80B.jpeg

C606E8EB-72E1-4FB8-906D-8195E967A049.jpeg
93B32E79-DF24-48D2-AFCA-A30BEB8B1852.jpeg
What specs do you think would go into it?
I’m thinking:
Double sole, vibram100, block heel, rough out lineman flap, black eyelets and hooks, but not sure on much else.
Thinking a smooth leather but something with some visual interest. Idk if the heel is standard height or raised either. Any recs from those more experienced?
 

theofficialhung

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2/ Would a block heel look weirdly huge with a fat ol' Vibram 100 heel cap?
3/ How much faster does the Honey Vibram 100 sole wear compared to the standard black version?
Do you like the look of these? Looks like the block heel is 1/4 lowered + double midsole. I'm strongly debating a similar build in either Elk Tan Brown or Burgundy CXL.

Screenshot_20210619-181355_Instagram.jpg
 
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Couple of build-related questions for all you good folks to help me decide if I really want or need a pair of distressed RO boots:

1/ Would a Quabaug heel cap look weird with a Vibram 100 sole?
2/ Would a block heel look weirdly huge with a fat ol' Vibram 100 heel cap?
3/ How much faster does the Honey Vibram 100 sole wear compared to the standard black version?
4/ Does the distressed leather (smooth or RO) run any cooler or more comfortable than the oil-tan brown/black?

Still trying to decide on 6" BHs or SDs (with a Vibram 100 sole) for a general outdoor work/travel boot. All my other boots are darker leather and/or leather I'd prefer not to trash so it would be nice to have some more mid-brown shit-kickers so I can perhaps retire my less comfy Iron Rangers.
1- In my opinion, yes. The 100 sole is aggressive, and the Quabaug heels are not.
2- Having the logger heel makes the heel feel less unwieldy from my experience. That said, I much prefer the logger sole aesthetically also.
3- No data
4- No data
 

PACostag

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About a month of 8hr a day wear. They won't see much action through the summer, just here and there. September will start 5 days a week through June. Can't wait to see what these look like then as i'm planning on not really touching them at all.
View attachment 1626559
but boot maintenance is half the fun!
 

PACostag

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Hi Guys,

my BHs finally arrived. followings are the customization and features. This is my first pair of whites boots. took about 16 weeks (feb 16th to 18th June ) to arrive which is on par with what is in Bakers website. Dealing with Kyle was easy and the customer service from him was fantastic (this was said many times in this forum) Here are the features of the pair.

Customization Cost for Wickett & Craig X White's Boots Custom Baker's Bounty Hunter Wickett & Craig Leathers: Natural Veg Tan (Baker Exclusive) Last: Semi Dress (Bounty Hunter) Leather Liner: Brown Lace Design: Lace to Toe Pull Loops: No Thanks Celastic Toe Box: Single Celastic Toe [ $35.00 ] Toe Cap: No Thanks Steel Toe: No Thanks Hardware: All Nickel Eyes Top: Cut Top (standard) Midsole: Double [ $52.00 ] Edge: Brown Heel Base: Standard Heel Lifts: 1/4"Higher Sole: Vibram 700 Sole Trim: Standard Trim (Double Row Stitch) Height: 8 Size - Length: 8.5 Size - Width: EE (Wide) Logos / Embossing: No logos or Embossing Sizing Confirmation: I confirm the size I selected Custom


After inspecting the boots i was surprised to see the quality of the brand new boots i got. i attached a lot of pic with this so you can see it as well. i do not want to make any judgements right out of the gate without any experience in the matter. i would like to ask your opinion on these photos.

this is how this boot came out of the box. i did not even try them yet.
To me this is not an acceptable level of quality for a pair that cost more than $700. i understand it is a hand made product and the hides could have variations. but these imperfections looks like they ware made after it was finished. . looks like it was taken for a stroll. (i am sure it is not the case but it looks like it).
in some imperfections, I could feel it when i run my finger across.

and these imperfections are not localized to one are or one boot. it is all over on both.

i work in manufacturing as well and i understand that it is merely impossible to achieve prefect 100% quality in any process. But as a customer i am having a hard time justifying to keep this.

Please let me know what i should do with this and are these considered acceptable levels of imperfections? Appreciate your suggestions

ask your humble opinion on this. View attachment 1627007View attachment 1627008View attachment 1627009View attachment 1627010View attachment 1627011View attachment 1627012View attachment 1627013View attachment 1627014View attachment 1627015View attachment 1627016View attachment 1627017View attachment 1627018View attachment 1627020View attachment 1627021View attachment 1627022
honestly given my experience with this leather and how much of a sponge it is in its raw state, nothing here looks too bad to my picky ass eyes
 

wordfool

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1- In my opinion, yes. The 100 sole is aggressive, and the Quabaug heels are not.
2- Having the logger heel makes the heel feel less unwieldy from my experience. That said, I much prefer the logger sole aesthetically also.
3- No data
4- No data
Thanks. I figured the Quabaug heel would look a bit odd. I do have a pair of BHs with a 100 sole and logger heel and TBH am not a huge fan both in terms of look and how it causes me to adjust my gait/stride, although I've only worn them for a few months during winter so maybe my body will get used to the slightly different heel strike. I seem to get along much better with my block-heeled boots, but would prefer not to have to go lowered-block since I like how the arch feels at standard height.
 

wordfool

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Do you like the look of these? Looks like the block heel is 1/4 lowered + double midsole. I'm strongly debating a similar build in either Elk Tan Brown or Burgundy CXL.

View attachment 1627579
Nice look boots, although I'd not want the added weight of a double midsole. Is the heel lowered or does it just looks relatively low compared to the midsole chonk? The big issue with a block Vib100 heel is how close it's sanded down to the upper. I've seen a few images of Vib100 block heels that protrude far too much backwards/sideways and just look ridiculous with the giant heel cap.
 

climbinglife

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Couple of build-related questions for all you good folks to help me decide if I really want or need a pair of distressed RO boots:

1/ Would a Quabaug heel cap look weird with a Vibram 100 sole?
2/ Would a block heel look weirdly huge with a fat ol' Vibram 100 heel cap?
3/ How much faster does the Honey Vibram 100 sole wear compared to the standard black version?
4/ Does the distressed leather (smooth or RO) run any cooler or more comfortable than the oil-tan brown/black?

Still trying to decide on 6" BHs or SDs (with a Vibram 100 sole) for a general outdoor work/travel boot. All my other boots are darker leather and/or leather I'd prefer not to trash so it would be nice to have some more mid-brown shit-kickers so I can perhaps retire my less comfy Iron Rangers.
1: No they do not. I think they look fine. The CWBs i gifted to my best friend after White's wrecked the stitching on a rebuild has this exact setup. He had it done when he did his first resole. I think it looks fine. I need to get pictures of his boots up here, they look amazing and a testament to how durable CXL is.
2: I don't think it would "look" weird but might "feel" weird when walking unless you lower them. I really only like the block heel on the SDs and all my boots except for my current RO SDs had the traditional cuban heel.
3: I can't say for sure but they are a softer compound and will wear faster depending on the surface you will spend most of your time on. I've been wanting to get my CWBs that have the black 100 resoled with the Honey Vibram but i've been apprehensive that White's will even screw that up.
4: While I don't have oil tan brown/black my other boots are lined CXL and I wear the same socks as in my new unlined Distressed RO SDs and I think the difference is negligible. To me socks make all the difference.
 

DG123

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@DG123 's post and @prasom 's issue is a good example of the dichotomy between a work boot company and a fashion boot company.
I believe footwear companies should and do retain their original culture. If consumers want to use for style/fashion the shoes/boots specifically designed for work applications, that's fine.
For physical labor work I wear my Red Wing work boots but I don't like the style for everyday wear or the function of the work boot design for walking long distances. For walking long distances I like the fit, support, and low heel of my Alden Indy boots.
The Indy boot is Alden's best selling model, I believe because its produced using an orthopedic last which many people find comfortable. Alden originally introduced the Indy boot as an orthopedic work boot. Alden's culture is that of a dress shoe company , including finely finished leathers. Companies such as Red Wing, Wesco, White's, Chippewa, Rocky etc...have a history/culture of producing shoes/boots for factory work, fire fighting, logging etc....and as such are not accustomed to dealing with the leathers, last shapes, production techniques, finishes etc... of dress shoe companies.
 
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wordfool

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1: No they do not. I think they look fine. The CWBs i gifted to my best friend after White's wrecked the stitching on a rebuild has this exact setup. He had it done when he did his first resole. I think it looks fine. I need to get pictures of his boots up here, they look amazing and a testament to how durable CXL is.
2: I don't think it would "look" weird but might "feel" weird when walking unless you lower them. I really only like the block heel on the SDs and all my boots except for my current RO SDs had the traditional cuban heel.
3: I can't say for sure but they are a softer compound and will wear faster depending on the surface you will spend most of your time on. I've been wanting to get my CWBs that have the black 100 resoled with the Honey Vibram but i've been apprehensive that White's will even screw that up.
4: While I don't have oil tan brown/black my other boots are lined CXL and I wear the same socks as in my new unlined Distressed RO SDs and I think the difference is negligible. To me socks make all the difference.
thanks. Would love to see what the boots with the combo 100 sole and Quabaug heel cap look like. I’m also more a fan of the block heel on SDs, and in general, so I think a lowered block heel with the 100 heel cap would probably look fine. Is your block heel preference standard height or lowered? TBH I don’t feel a huge difference between the two (it is only a 1/4”) but lowered seem marginally more comfortable for a lot of walking, which is what I’ll probably be doing, mainly on pavement, in this new pair, hence my other question about honey vs. regular vibram sole. The standard black 100 sole I have on one pair is actually softer than the 430 sole so that’ll probably be comfortable enough

Now my decision is whether to get SDs or 6” BHs in distressed RO, toecap or no toecap. I love the more minimalist SD look, but the BH seem to lock my heel down better.
 

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