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Shoe construction

FCS

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To A. Harris, Bengal-Stripe, and the other shoe experts,

What is the most durable shoe construction specs that you can think of?

And also what does it mean to have a double oak leather sole as opposed to a single oak one? Just visited several high-end stores and the salespersons have no idea what I'm talking about. And this was in a mall that caters one of the wealthiest neighbourhoods in the city. And they've never heard this strange brand called Alden either. "Pardon me Sir, you mean Aldo? No Sir, Alden of Carmel, these are not shoes to go for clubbing."
 

FCS

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Oh, it's a Canadian shoe company selling mid-end casual shoes.
 

Kai

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To A. Harris, Bengal-Stripe, and the other shoe experts,

What is the most durable shoe construction specs that you can think of?

And also what does it mean to have a double oak leather sole as opposed to a single oak one? Just visited several high-end stores and the salespersons have no idea what I'm talking about. And this was in a mall that caters one of the wealthiest neighbourhoods in the city. And they've never heard this strange brand called Alden either. "Pardon me Sir, you mean Aldo? No Sir, Alden of Carmel, these are not shoes to go for clubbing."
A double oak sole is made with two pieces of leather rather than just one. It is thicker and will wear longer, but looks a bit less formal than a sleeker, single sole.

The most durable shoe specs would have a shoe with a thick, vibram rubber sole.

The part that wears out the soonest in any shoes is usually the heel and toe edges. That is why many lleather soled shoes have a rubber insert at the heel to prevent undue wear.
 

FCS

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Sorry, I should've mentioned construction specs for leather soled dress shoes.

Although how exactly do they attach the rubber sole for those 'dress casual' shoes? Do they actually go with the same welting process as that of leather soled shoes?
 

bengal-stripe

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The best construction method for strong shoes is "Goodyear-welted". Most good English and American shoes use that construction. Most good Italian shoes are "Blake-stitched", which makes a more flexible shoe. (Quite a few Italian shoes are moccasins.) There are also various hybrid methods, which combine elements of the two. Cheap shoes are usually "cemented": the sole is glued on, and can come relatively easily apart from the shoe.

Rubber soles can be moulded, like trainers or yellow Timberlands. Here the sole comes in form of granules, which get turned into foam and sets in a mould, which has the shoe attached to the top and forms the profile of the sole underneath. A very expensive way initially as you need all the moulds in the various sizes, but once you're set up, it's rather cheap. Rubber soles can also come as ready soles, to be welted and stitched or cemented.
 

Alias

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As much as some people misalign shoes with synthetic soles, I can't find anything more suitable, given my situation. I have to walk around the city a lot, every day. My $70 Rockports' synthetic soles have worn better than my $200+ Allen Edmonds' leather ones, plus they give me much better traction in those smooth-floored subway terminals, and I won't mind if I step in a puddle. Comfort-wise, they're about the same.
 

FCS

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As much as some people misalign shoes with synthetic soles, I can't find anything more suitable, given my situation. I have to walk around the city a lot, every day. My $70 Rockports' synthetic soles have worn better than my $200+ Allen Edmonds' leather ones, plus they give me much better traction in those smooth-floored subway terminals, and I won't mind if I step in a puddle. Comfort-wise, they're about the same.
Ask a shoe repair shop to put a rubber 'sole protector' on your leather sole. If applied properly it would not be noticeable at all on your AE shoes, and greatly enhance the durability of the sole. I usually ask to cover the whole leather sole and not just half of it. And putting a leather insole cushion would give extra durability to the insole as well as comfort. I found AE insole is rather tough for my feet.

Works relly well fo me.
 

Alias

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Yeah, but if I do that, I wouldn't be able to take advantage of AE's wonderful reconditioning program they have for their shoes. I think I'll fork over 90 bucks to them sometime next spring to have them resoled, repolished, and all that good stuff.
 

FCS

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Hem, the sole protector is glued to your leather sole and can be detached without any problem. As for the leather insole cushion, you just slip them inside your shoes, that's it. I have 2 AE leather soled dress shoes and this works really well in enforcing the durability of the shoes. A good sole protector, usually Vibram but I have also been told of some other brands, will last you at least a year if not more. And to replace the sole protector is obviously cheaper than to replace the leather outsole. The only downside is that the glue could peel off if there is too much moisture in the shoes. Of course, wearing rotation and using cedar shoe trees would prevent the problem.

The insole cushion will do the same thing to your leather insole, to a lesser extent because the sweat will always penetrate the cushion. But it will definitely minimise direct friction/pressure between your feet and the insole.

Now I still haven't tried AE refurbishing program but I don't see any reason why they would refuse doing it just because a sole protector was applied. They would be scrapping the whole outsole anyways.
 

Alias

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Makes sense, now that I think about it. Maybe I'll get those later on.

Edit: How do British shoe sizes measure width? I find E width (American) to be very comfortable, but I'm looking at a site that does British shoe sizes, and it's throwing letters at me like D, E, F, and G. How can I translate these into the American system? Is our E their E?
 

MPS

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As a general rule, American E equals a UK F (i.e. for the same letter designation the former will fit wider than the latter).
 

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