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**The Official Shoe Care Thread: Tutorials, Photos, etc.**

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by Mr. Moo, Feb 28, 2011.

  1. teacher2

    teacher2 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks again.

    So, what I can take from this is whilst using a cream / conditioner may be a good idea, realistically, just using a saphir MDO wax polish every 5 wears is good enough until the shoes look tired, then use cream / conditioner to get a bit more moisture in. For me, this might be in about 1 year, but, we'll see.
     


  2. Sir F

    Sir F Senior member

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    Christian B is my private teacher [​IMG]!
     


  3. bucksfan

    bucksfan Senior member

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    Question: How do I safely remove stubborn shoe polish from shell cordovan shoes? I have done searches, and came up with results recommending and recommending against the following: alcohol, wd-40, acetone, nail polish remover, etc...

    Background: So, I bought a pair of used Shell Cordovans off Ebay - I don't usually do that, but I found a pair I've been looking for that is no longer made - the AE Sanford in Cherry Shell Cordovan. They are in great shape everywhere except the vamp. Apparently someone spent a good amount of time putting burgundy and black wax all over the vamp of the shoes. When I received them, the creases were all caked with wax, and there were small blotches of wax all over the vamp, especially on the right shoe.

    To compound this, it appears someone also used a clear shining agent (perhaps Lexol?) all over the shoes, soles included.

    I began the wax removal process with a damp cotton sock and a horsehair brush. Did 2 rounds, about 10 minutes of brushing each shoe. No real improvement.

    Next, I tried Renovateur. This really did a good job shining up the shoes, and I got wax coming off on my Reno applicator (again, a cotton sock). Brushing shined them right up, but the wax was definitely still there.

    Next, I tried a very small amount of diluted nail polish remover (on a small section, near the arch of the right shoe). All that seemed to do is spread it around.

    I then sat down with a damp cotton sock and a horsehair brush and began really working on it. This seemed to spread it around, and got it out of the creases, but now it looks like there is dark burgundy polish spread evenly all over the vamp, covering up the natural beauty of these shoes (and not matching the toe cap or quarters).

    Finally, I began again with Reno, a cotton sock and a horsehair brush, and really gave it some elbow grease. This combination seemed to be removing a lot of the polish, but there is still a ton on there after an hour of this (1 hour each shoe, that is).

    Besides just continuing to work at it this way, are there any other options?
    Am I risking removing the glazing on the shell cordovan by rubbing aggressively at it with a damp cotton sock and a horsehair brush?

    Thanks for any advice!
     


  4. PAScheel

    PAScheel Member

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    To remove this we used "rensebenzin" (I think it's called white gasoline or something like that) in the army. I still use it to remove old layers of polish. It's very effective! Dap some on some toilet paper and move it in circles and you'll se the paper get burgundy/black colored. When it's all colored use a new paper and keep working in circles to remove it.

    When you've finished let it dry for 24h to make sure all the gasoline have evaporated from the leather. The good thing about the gasoline is that it doesn't remove the original color from the leather but only the polish. After you've let it dry apply conditioner ofc.

    Try it! I'm sure it'll get rid of your problem :)

    (Try google "rensebenzin" and translate to make sure it's the same as white gasoline.)

    EDT:
    I don't know how difficult it is. But saddle soap should also get rid of the polish. Many people believe the white gasoline and the saddle soap is too harsh on the leather. I really can't see why if you just apply conditioner to the leather. Some have also told that they've used saddle soap and their shoes are just as good as some who hasn't been using saddle soap.

    IMO I would rather remove the polish thoroughly and make sure it's all gone than leaving some old polish just because I was "afraid" of the saddle soap ruining my shoes :)
     
    Last edited: May 1, 2012


  5. Northampton Novice

    Northampton Novice Senior member

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    Yes, lighter fuel should do the job adequately too.
     


  6. IrateCustomer

    IrateCustomer Senior member

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  7. Slickman

    Slickman Senior member

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    Question, have a pair of shoes on the way that have rubber toe taps and want to have them replaced with metal toe taps, can anyone recommend a reliable cobbler in NYC whom they have experience with?
     


  8. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    VIP Shoe service plus on 55th street.
     


  9. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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  10. Slickman

    Slickman Senior member

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    Will check it out, thank you
     


  11. patrick_b

    patrick_b Senior member

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    E Burgundy Shell Leeds. I added a second coat of Renovateur during my conference calls last week. I've had them for a month now and they've probably been worn twice a week. Direct late afternoon sunlight is tough lighting conditions but you get the idea. I brushed these for a good 15 minutes and then buffed w/a microfiber cloth. No wax yet.

    [​IMG]

    I'm new to shell but I do like how well they shine very little effort and virtually no wax. I find that they look great right after brushing but dull rather quickly, like a wear or two. However, the shine comes right back with just a little effort.

    These images were taken after the first coat of renovateur. I love how different they can look in sunny or overcast light.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]
     


  12. Gdot

    Gdot Senior member

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    I have also used Renovateur on my shell shoes. However, I notice that the description of the proper care of Shell Cordovan here:

    http://www.hangerproject.com/closet/saphir-cordovan-shoe-polish.html

    Indicates that the use of products with Turpentine in them is not recommended for shell cordovan care.

    Now it is clear that Renovateur contains turpentine simply by the aroma.

    Might this mean that we would not be well advised to use Reno on our Shell shoes?

    I'm not saying I actually know. Just raising a topic for discussion.

    In any case - the minimal use of polishes and products is widely supported.
     


  13. Anden

    Anden Senior member

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    My beloved Aldens after a quick coat of Saphir neutral creme. I use that along with Saphir cordovan creme and reno. Works well.
    [​IMG][​IMG]
     


  14. teacher2

    teacher2 Well-Known Member

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    Sigh, asked the shoe repairer to reheel a pair of Lloyds and Topy a pair of Herring Premiers.

    He convinced me to resole the Lloyds (probably fair call, they were wearing down quite a fair bit and really was soft in some parts of the sole).

    So, yea, asked for a re-sole on the Lloyds, a topy on the Herring Premier and a re-heel on the Lloyds. He even showed me a leather sole.

    Come back 4 hours later.... He has topy'ed the Herring, re-heeled the Lloyds.... and Topy'ed the Lloyds :mad:. No, I wanted re-soleing. Not Topying.

    Sigh, sigh, sigh.

    So, now, is it problematic that he has just chucked a Topy on top of my worn out leather soles? When the Topy wears down in approx. a year, I'm assuming I can just take it to a better place and get it re-soled?

    When I told him that he didn't do what I asked for, he said that he couldn't re-sole them because their edge was too thin. Would a better place be able to re-sole them, and have them still look good?

    (FTR, despite the story above, I genuinely think he thought I wanted Topying on the Lloyds as well, not a resole... despite me only every saying I wanted a resole on the Lloyds, not a topy).
     


  15. patrick_b

    patrick_b Senior member

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    Interesting points Gdot. I hadn't even considered any negative impact of Renovateur on shell. I looked at it like a variation of the Mac method, substituting wax for Reno. As you said, the key is likely to use any product sparingly. I have saphir's cordovan wax but have yet to try it.
     


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