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Sole Welting

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Quarantanove, Apr 19, 2012.

  1. cbfn

    cbfn Senior member

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    [​IMG]

    Edit: And I just learned the difference between a welt-stitch and sole-stitch. So even though a shoes is handwelted, are the soles usually stitched on by machine?
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2014
  2. dbhdnhdbh

    dbhdnhdbh Senior member

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    Even DW has said that he will machine-stitch the outsole for clients who are that cost conscious. Not many such people buy bespoke shoes, so it rarely comes up. Somewhere in this thread there was an explanation that one can match the holes in the existing welt but still use a machine.

    In GY welted shoes that B Nelson has done for me the outsole stitching used the existing holes. Apparently this is quite practical if you know what you are doing.
     
  3. dbhdnhdbh

    dbhdnhdbh Senior member

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    Perhaps the brief life of the finish is part of the appeal. Like the presentation of a meal. The elaborate arrangement of the food will be lost the moment you start eating.

    From some of the comments, it seems no bespoke or high end RTW maker would consider presenting shoes without finishing the soles. It would be like not polishing them.

    I would still love to hear Nick on the durability of soles that are always covered with Topys. Do you eventually need to restore the footbed after the cork has compressed and shifted? Does the sole deteriorate in some other way in such shoes? Protected from abrasion, but still flexed as much as unprotected soles? If one uses Topys is there still a reason to get JR, or will regular super prime last just as long?

    I'm glad to see this wealth of information back to civil discussion.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2014
  4. chogall

    chogall Senior member

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    In inclement weather conditions such as (sub)tropical there's absolutely no reason to use leather sole or topy. Shoes will absorb water both from the sole and the welt. Not even Norwegian or storm welt could help.

    The only solution is rubber sole.

    Topy could only prevent sole wears but not water.
     
  5. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    I beg your pardon if this is unwelcome...but you did mention my name and refer to comments I made previously. And, if I'm not mistaken, the information about stitching in the same holes with a machine was also mine.

    In any case, I thought I would post this photo (since I'm in a photo posting mood this morning)...this is a shot of the bottom of an outsole that has been stitched by machine. While not a repair and not addressing the issue of using the same holes in the welt, boots that come into me to have the outsole replaced go out looking exactly the same. Made about 12-15 years ago.

    [click for closer view]

    [​IMG]

    Same boots shown just to satisfy curiosity and to clarify the perspective distortion of the bottom view.

    [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2014
    2 people like this.
  6. LynahFaithful

    LynahFaithful Senior member

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    Are there wooden pegs in the waist?
     
  7. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    I assume this is meant for me...

    Yes. That's Traditional for the form / style of boot.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2014
  8. LynahFaithful

    LynahFaithful Senior member

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    DW - Yes it was. Sorry I wasn't clear. I thought you used the pegs but I couldn't quite tell from the picture. Thanks.
     
  9. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    No worries.

    Double row, 10 to the inch.
     
  10. dbhdnhdbh

    dbhdnhdbh Senior member

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    Wow! I mean, I would never wear something like that. It would attract too much attention. But WOW
     
  11. dbhdnhdbh

    dbhdnhdbh Senior member

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    chogall,

    I bet you are right about wet weather. I use Topys to protect soles from abrasion not water. For waterproofing one needs rubber. It is about 80 degrees below subtropical here, so no worries.
     
  12. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    DW, the "64 to the inch" way back when, what kind of awl would they use for that? Sewing needles carefully curved?
     
  13. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    pB,

    Probably something close. An awl is just a shaped piece of metal. Sewing awls and inseaming awls tend to be round shanked and have a flat, "horizontal" blade.Square awl (used for Traditional outsole stitching) have a flat "vertical" blade.

    I don't think anyone really knows what was used (although it is fairly certain silk was used for thread)...no one is alive who remembers and it was done mostly as prizework and as a protest against encroaching mechanization.

    The possibility is high that each maker who did this sort of work fashioned his own awls. But Devlin or Rees...one of the "Elder Shoe Gods"...wrote that when he did this work, he used an awl so fine that when he slipped and pierced the base of his thumb, it neither hurt nor bled. IIRC, he went on to say that he used a hair from his daughters head as a bristle (instead of a needle).

    When I was fooling with this, I took a fairly fine sewing needle and sharpened a flat blade on it and put a small curve in it. The real problem was finding a haft to mount it in. Eventually I just used it like a needle and used a thimble to push it through the leather. But that wasn't real conducive to accuracy...or maybe it was just me.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2014
  14. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I think I might donate my bones to the Trade when I die. There should be a space for that on your driver's license.
     
  15. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    You know the story of St. Hugh's Bones, don't you? You could be St. Patrick...'cept that's taken already.
     
  16. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    I do know the St Hugh story. Exactly what I was alluding to! :)
     
  17. misterjuiceman

    misterjuiceman Senior member

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    Summoning DW on this one (and whoever else has an opinion on it, of course).

    Could there be any advantage to using a fiberboard insole on a Blake-rapid constructed boot? Kyle Rancourt has been posting on Reddit about using fiberboard insoles on their Blake-rapid constructed boots. It sounds like marketing nonsense to me, and I'd imagine that leather insoles are quite a bit more expensive. Is it at all possible that it's not?
    Quote: [​IMG]
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2014
  18. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    I'm not going to critique this. By attaching the video and making an association with this company and the materials and techniques involved, I cannot feel comfortable commenting.

    Some other time, some other place it might be possible to have a discussion regarding the strengths and weaknesses of different materials and techniques.

    There may be...I'm sure there are...others who have no such qualms.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2014
  19. misterjuiceman

    misterjuiceman Senior member

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    I apologize if I put you in an awkward position by mentioning you directly.
     
  20. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    You didn't. You may just have missed the fact that I get asked similar questions fairly regularly and I have stated...fairly regularly...that I do not criticize / critique other makers. Even manufacturers.

    That's my policy.
     
    Last edited: Feb 12, 2014

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