***The official Alden thread *** Share enthusiasm, reviews, sizing, advice, and photos.

Discussion in 'Streetwear and Denim' started by jet, Nov 3, 2008.

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  1. Simplicio

    Simplicio Senior member

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    I've just bought a pair of those natural chromexcel longwings from Winn Perry. I had been a little upset that I couldn't get hold of the Leather Soul version, but I think I might like these even better. Personally, I like the commando sole, and it is ideal for rainy climates.

    Thanks for the pointer.
     


  2. HorseHide

    HorseHide Senior member

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    I've just bought a pair of those natural chromexcel longwings from Winn Perry. I had been a little upset that I couldn't get hold of the Leather Soul version, but I think I might like these even better. Personally, I like the commando sole, and it is ideal for rainy climates.

    Thanks for the pointer.


    +1 Just grabbed a pair as well - here in Chicago the commando sole trumps the crepe sole.
     


  3. framus

    framus Active Member

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    Hi there [​IMG]
    Is it correct that the barrie last and the true balance last are about the same in length (while the true balance last is a tad wider) ? So if i have a 10 in the barrie last it would be highly likely that i have a 10 in the true balance last also ?


    From my experience you are correct. Having just added Barrie Last wingtip ravello boots (pics 2 pages back) and having worn TrueBalance boots for the last 2 years. The Barrie fit the same in the length, but are overall more snug in the foot diameter. I did just add a Vivia leather shoe insert to the TrueBalance and the fit so much better, closer to the Barrie now. It's like having a new boot as I was considering selling them because of the extra space in the width.
     


  4. triumphman

    triumphman Senior member

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    Not sure if he still lurks the forum but Amlai... Have any recent photos of your #8 Indys after the restoration which was a few years back? Would love to see how the look now!
     


  5. gnatty8

    gnatty8 Senior member

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    Did anybody see that Winn Perry has a new natural chromexel longwing up. I'm not liking the commando sole on it. But to each their own.

    Probably would have bought those, but just cannot bring myself to like that commando sole..
     


  6. false

    false Senior member

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    This has been a bad weekend for my Indy's.

    Will Alden replace my shoes if the welt-insole-outole are completely seperating after only 8 months? I only ever wear these things to sit at a desk or go out for coffee. My Clarks survived 3 years of hell and now my $400+ shoes are falling apart after a weekend trip in the city?

    The outsolde has begun seperating from the welt, leaving the toe of my Indy's split into three layers. I can actually poke my index finger in between the layers. The welt stiching has ripped through on the left boot and neoprene on my right boot is begining to look like a tooth in a receding gum line (with the welt being the gums). Over time, the leather welts shrank with wetness while the outsole (which isn't affected by water) stayed in place. This seems to have stressed the stitching, which has mostly disappeared from the outsole due to abrasion against the pavement.
     


  7. slide13

    slide13 Senior member

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    wow, crazy. Post pics if you can. Also, send them into Alden with a note describing the issue...I had some issues with my Indys and did that and they ended up replacing them with a brand new pair for me (and even offered to let me switch tot he 404 if I wanted when i expressed possible interest in that...though I stayed with the 405 in the end). Great service from Alden.
     


  8. PeterParker

    PeterParker Senior member

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    I have a question here, and it's a total n00b one. I see a lot of Alden cordovan shoes with leather soles, and even the Alden crepe rubber has leather tips. I also hear about how cordovan is good in the rain (not torrential downpours, but "inclement weather"), and how the crepe sole is great when it's wet out. Doesn't the leather sole (or tip) wear very poorly when it's wet out? I would think shoes for wet streets would use dainite, commando, or lug soles. So do the leather soles used on the Alden cordovan boots hold up decent when it's damp, or is the cordovan used just for the looks rather than water resistance?
    You are correct. The leather soles are less than ideal for rainy weather. The double oak leather soles, to my understanding, are not cordovan. Regardless, any leather sole is porous and will therefore absorb water (even cordovan). When the leather gets wet, it becomes softer and more susceptible to abrasion (i.e. from walking) so the soles will wear faster. The other issue with moisture is allowing the shoes to dry out. If the water absorbed by the sole is left in the sole, it can also damage the sole by developing mold or delaminating from the shoe. This is why it is not recommended to place your shoes on their soles after wearing in the rain; air cannot circulate under the soles to help them dry. The reason why the waterloc sole is more suitable for rainy weather is that it is impregnated with oil to repel and prevent absorption of water. While a commando or lug sole is more suitable for the rain, many consider them to compromise the aesthetic of the shoe making them less attractive.
     


  9. Islander

    Islander Senior member

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    Not sure if he still lurks the forum but Amlai... Have any recent photos of your #8 Indys after the restoration which was a few years back? Would love to see how the look now!

    Yeah pics of his #8 Indy boots are what first made me look at Alden.
     


  10. pebblegrain

    pebblegrain Senior member

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    I have a question here, and it's a total n00b one. I see a lot of Alden cordovan shoes with leather soles, and even the Alden crepe rubber has leather tips. I also hear about how cordovan is good in the rain (not torrential downpours, but "inclement weather"), and how the crepe sole is great when it's wet out. Doesn't the leather sole (or tip) wear very poorly when it's wet out? I would think shoes for wet streets would use dainite, commando, or lug soles. So do the leather soles used on the Alden cordovan boots hold up decent when it's damp, or is the cordovan used just for the looks rather than water resistance?
    The thing to remember is, leather is not significantly weaker than rubber. Especially in terms of abrasion resistance. This is why pro motorcycle gear is made of leather and not rubber. The main reason for having a tip is so that it is replaceable. Did you know there are leather-soled shoes with a rubber tip, and there are of course rubber-soled shoes with leather tip? WTF. They are similar.
    This is a tough one because it comes up very often in this thread, and there is about a weeks worth of reading posts to fully understand it all. The condensed version, as far as I understand it is: 1. Cordovan is the toughest leather out there. You can beat the crap out of it and it will remain indestructible. It is water tight, and was used for only the toughest work boots back in the day. Should hold up to any water mother nature can throw at it. 2. Keeping #1 in mind, since most cordovan is now used for "dress" boots/shoes, most people don't want to beat the crap out of it, so the aesthetics of the leather becomes an issue. 3. Many people claim, and there are pictures on this thread to prove it, that cordovan MAY develop "spots" due to direct water contact. Some people have been able to let their cordovan dry fully and brush most of the spots out. Others have experienced permanent spotting. Keeping that in mind, many people, (including myself) have used cordovan shoes/boots in the rain (not hours on end in a torrential rain, but just under normal circumstances) and have not experienced ANY spotting. To further complicate things, some have speculated that the spotting may be due to the finishing process of the cordovan, and may occur at random on some shoes but not others, making the whole thing a crap shoot. 4. Commando sole is the true "bad weather" sole! Crepe with leather tip is great in terms of traction, comfort, and water resistance, but as you stated, the tip can create problems. Some people have posted about premature wear of the leather tip when used in rainy conditions. Water locked leather soles may also be beneficial in rain/bad weather because the sole has been oiled and maintains a high degree of waterproofing, but traction becomes and issue and eventually they will leak sooner than the other two soles I just mentioned. 5. The welt is also fundamental in determining how water proof a pair of shoes will be, but I have a hard time keeping the different welts straight, so I won't attempt to give you any info on those, lol. Of course I may have gotten some (or all) of the above wrong, but hopefully this is a good start to answering your question. Hopefully some of the "experts" on this thread can expand on this, or give a different perspective.
    Cordovan is by far NOT the toughest leather out there. Bull hide, buffalo hide, pigskin, waxed cowhide, etc can all demolish cordovan in terms of low-maintenance toughness. Its tougher than calf leather though. Waterloc is okay but is not especially tough. It's a historical luxury with little added function in real life. Oiled leather, big deal. Better than plain leather, I suppose. As waterproof as rubber? not even close.
     


  11. gnatty8

    gnatty8 Senior member

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    This has been a bad weekend for my Indy's.

    Will Alden replace my shoes if the welt-insole-outole are completely seperating after only 8 months? I only ever wear these things to sit at a desk or go out for coffee. My Clarks survived 3 years of hell and now my $400+ shoes are falling apart after a weekend trip in the city?

    The outsolde has begun seperating from the welt, leaving the toe of my Indy's split into three layers. I can actually poke my index finger in between the layers. The welt stiching has ripped through on the left boot and neoprene on my right boot is begining to look like a tooth in a receding gum line (with the welt being the gums). Over time, the leather welts shrank with wetness while the outsole (which isn't affected by water) stayed in place. This seems to have stressed the stitching, which has mostly disappeared from the outsole due to abrasion against the pavement.


    Wow, what are you doing in this boots? I wear a pair of Indies as motorcycle boots and they are going on 2 years now and still looking great even after some serious abuse. I guess it's possible you bought lemons that somehow should not have made it through quality control. If it were me, I'd consider 8 months to be long enough for repairs to be on me, but send them back to Alden and see what they will do for you.
     


  12. Krissly

    Krissly Member

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    From my experience you are correct. Having just added Barrie Last wingtip ravello boots (pics 2 pages back) and having worn TrueBalance boots for the last 2 years. The Barrie fit the same in the length, but are overall more snug in the foot diameter. I did just add a Vivia leather shoe insert to the TrueBalance and the fit so much better, closer to the Barrie now. It's like having a new boot as I was considering selling them because of the extra space in the width.

    Thanks pal, so i am going to jump onto the Roy preorder. Now the only thing im a little worried about is the width, because it looks like above US 12 the truebalance is only available in D.
    Oh well, time will tell [​IMG]
     


  13. ChrisGold

    ChrisGold Senior member

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    Ravello on a cold Philly morning - crepe sole is great in this weather, and very comfortable.
    [​IMG]
     


  14. jolla

    jolla Active Member

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    Hey gents, I'd really appreciate some advice. Just picked up the beautiful Ravello Wingtip Boots from ShoeMart. Unfortunately, it was really hard to tell if they were the right size (I got an 11.5D) without stepping in them and creasing them. I made my best guess that they felt ok and were not too big and decided that I was going to keep them...

    Well, I've worn them twice and caught a glance of my profile in a window at the San Francisco Ferry building this weekend. I wanna shoot myself: they are too big. I've seen posts saying that you should just get rid of a shoe unless it fits you properly, but maybe, just maybe, I could make these work with enough padding.

    What do you guys think--do I keep them and layer down the inserts or just sell them and hope I can pick them up in an 11D at some point?

    Thanks for the advice!
     


  15. makewayhomer

    makewayhomer Senior member

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    Hey gents, I'd really appreciate some advice. Just picked up the beautiful Ravello Wingtip Boots from ShoeMart. Unfortunately, it was really hard to tell if they were the right size (I got an 11.5D) without stepping in them and creasing them. I made my best guess that they felt ok and were not too big and decided that I was going to keep them...

    Well, I've worn them twice and caught a glance of my profile in a window at the San Francisco Ferry building this weekend. I wanna shoot myself: they are too big. I've seen posts saying that you should just get rid of a shoe unless it fits you properly, but maybe, just maybe, I could make these work with enough padding.

    What do you guys think--do I keep them and layer down the inserts or just sell them and hope I can pick them up in an 11D at some point?

    Thanks for the advice!


    they probably would have taken them back if they were worn indoors only, on a carpet, without sever creasing

    you could try an insole, some people say that works, certainly worth a try
     


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