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Leather Quality and Properties

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by VegTan, Jul 8, 2013.

  1. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Here's my St. Crispin's black crust leather. I have no idea of the tannery, but Philip said it comes completely unfinished and the little finish they apply themselves. I love the variation in the pigment and the slight grayish tone where it bends. Ages so nicely.

     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2013
  2. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    May not be the same stuff I was referring to...St. Crispin's Baby Calf is a leather that A.A. Crack carries (should have mentioned that...meant to) .

    Doesn't really have anything to do with St. Crispins-maker...not that I know of.
     
    Last edited: Oct 23, 2013
  3. dibadiba

    dibadiba Senior member

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    I can vouch for them too. I've used their boxcalf for briefcases and it's an absolutely wonderful leather. Beautiful finish, very little stretch, excellent consistency in thickness. Terrible with water though, as is most boxcalf I've seen...
     
  4. Fang66

    Fang66 Senior member

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    The shoes I'm looking at are a Japanese manufacturer pretty sure it is Chromexel, slightly oily mat finish.

    [​IMG]
     
  5. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    That's right...Veg retan. No dress calf finishes--Ie. you'll get reasonable casual service from the ChromeXcel, but never be able to apply and keep a shine.
     
  6. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    Although they do make some chromexcel leathers that are shiner than others. They have an array of different finishes and processes for them. I have seen some with a nice glow to them, of course still on the thick side and not right for a traditional oxford.
     
  7. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    True enough. But last time I looked at their selection, the finishes on the CrXL were a rather thick and opaque paint job. Bottom line, all the CrXL I had access to...direct from Horween...was oil stuffed.

    As you say, not a dress leather nor "right" for dress shoes.
     
    Last edited: Oct 24, 2013
  8. Fang66

    Fang66 Senior member

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    Cheers
     
  9. Fang66

    Fang66 Senior member

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    Off topic I know, sorry.

    By dress shoes, do you mean oxfords?

    The shoes above I'd be wearing with jeans, chino's, maybe trousers and sport coat, but not a suit.
     
  10. JermynStreet

    JermynStreet Senior member

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    Maybe the cordwainers can chime in on this, but is there any utility to a triple oak sole? I understand how, logically, a trouble oak sole might have made sense for heavy walking and hiking back in the day and that today it is largely just for show, but this German outfit, Heinrich Dincklacker, makes triple oak soled budapesters.

    http://www.budapester.de/t9269ccnni...01,Rio-Fluegelkappemit-silberbeschlaegen.html
     
  11. MoneyWellSpent

    MoneyWellSpent Senior member

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    Thicker soles would also be substantially longer lasting. Much more time between resolings.
     
  12. JermynStreet

    JermynStreet Senior member

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    I suppose. But I guess I was looking more for any history on the subject of triple-soled shoes. Were they historically used? If so, what were triple-soled shoes reserved for, usually?
     
  13. MoneyWellSpent

    MoneyWellSpent Senior member

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    I'm sure someone like DWF will be able to speak more to it's history. My guess is that it is a combination of durability along with what you said above. Given the utilitarian heritage of heavy brogue shoes for romping through the country side, the added height of the soles would help keep the feet higher and consequently less exposed to the muck.
     
    1 person likes this.
  14. dopey

    dopey Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I have a pair of triple soled long wings in shell from Carmina. In addition to what others have mentioned, they absorb shock a bit more and you are less likely to feel tiny rocks and stones BUT they are also much heavier.
     
  15. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    I'm suspect this won't be too well received but frankly I don't see any utility in triple ...or even double, for that matter...outsoles.

    When you consider the architecture of the foot and the way it functions to bear our weight and keep us balanced--all the subtle almost unnoticeable pressures, adjustments and muscle movements that occur almost constantly--you're almost forced to conclude that anything that gets between the foot and the ground is going to deaden or distort the sensory information that keeps us properly balance. In a nutshell we meant to feel the irregularity of the ground.

    Even single soles handicap us at least a little.

    Take the common rationales for x2 or x3 outsoles to its natural conclusion and you end up with high platform soles and heels or even wooden shoes.

    Now are double and triple soles "attractive?" That's an entirely different question than asking about the "utility" of them.

    As far as the history is concerned...I don't know. But stacked heels and even platform soles go back a long way.
     
  16. RogerP

    RogerP Senior member

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    I'm a big fan of double soles. They last a good long while and I prefer the solid feel underfoot. They do a better job of soaking up surface irregularities as well. So far I have noticed no impairment to my balance.
     
  17. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    No question, you can wear double soles, triple soles, quadruple soles longer, before you need to resole, than single soles. However, there is a Catch-22 in doing that...several as I see it.

    First, every pair of shoes is balanced when it comes from the maker so that the shoe will sit at the treadline and on a level heel (this last bit is open to interpretation and "artistic license," I'm afraid). The shape of the last sets this balance more or less in stone and every functional aspect of the shoe and some aspects of proper gait depend on it.

    As the outsole wears down, the balance between the height of the heel and the thickness of the outsole is altered. With a single outsole, you're very probably gonna replace that thickness as soon you notice a hole in the bottom...maybe, ideally, even before you notice a hole. And, in the process, restoring the balance.

    But with a multiple you may be tempted to wear a good portion of the second sole down as well. [If not, you've gained nothing in the way of durability.] But wearing into the second sole, is going to distort the shape of the shoe to some degree simply because the shoe is not wood or iron--it is leather and meant to be flexible...theoretically, at least, in accordance with the natural flexibility of the foot.

    What's more this distortion and imbalance will cause you to strike and roll in different places than you did when the shoe was new...and, more importantly, in different places than the last was designed for.

    And the longer you wear it in a configuration that is out of sync with the way the patterns were cut, the way the shank iron is bent, as well as out of sync with the relationship between heel height and treadline, the worse and more irreversible that distortion will get.

    Creating a vicious circle.

    It's fundamentally not good for either the shoe or the foot.

    If you wear the second sole down significantly and don't replace it when you replace the first sole, you will alter the balance of the shoe permanently.

    But if you replace both soles you will have gotten no more wear out of the double soles than by wearing out a single, replacing it, and then wearing out another pair of single soles. In fact, the stitching that holds the outsoles on...regardless of how many outsoles there are...often begins to come loose as soon as the first sole is worn out. That jeopardizes the security of the second sole and, commonly, the second sole will come loose and actually have to be replaced before its time.

    Additionally, multiples don't flex well or easily. They are stiff. And will remain stiff for a considerable time. The shoe can't break in and the foot gets fatigued far more easily.

    I suspect that when you "know the rest of the story" the durability issue looks more like urban myth than reality.

    --
     
    Last edited: Oct 25, 2013
    5 people like this.
  18. RogerP

    RogerP Senior member

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    My double sole shoes take a bit longer to break in - but only something in the order of maybe one or two extra wearings versus a comparable single sole. And the shoes definitely break in. Once they do, there is certainly no extra foot fatigue. In fact, I can't really say that I have experienced any downside whatsoever - perhaps it is the purported pitfalls of the double sole that are more myth than reality.

    And I do think that there is definitely an additional durability factor over a single sole even if you do re-sole after the outer sole has worn away. And that is because, with a single sole, I would imagine few if any would wait until that sole has completely worn away before replacing it. But with a double sole, you can.
     
  19. MoneyWellSpent

    MoneyWellSpent Senior member

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    Appreciate the insight DWF!
     
  20. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    :fonz:

    Yr. Hmb. Svt.
     

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