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

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

  1. traverscao

    traverscao Senior member

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    I would add a light coat of conditioner to the leather.
     
  2. traverscao

    traverscao Senior member

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    I wash my hands all the time, before and after applying products to my shoes. LOL I may be a closet schizophrenic, but I just have to keep my hands clean.
     
  3. Darell John

    Darell John Active Member

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    Wow, before as well? worried your shoes might get germs?
    Lol
     
  4. traverscao

    traverscao Senior member

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    One swipe of unclean finger on your shoes may either

    a) put an excess amount of oil from your body to the shoes, which may disrupt your intention to introduce just a proper amount of lubricant/conditioner to the leather,
    b) mix dirt or grit with the product, for which could potentially grind the creases to dust
    c) Disrupt the natural feel of the fingertips, where the application of the product should start from, NOT from the balls of the fingers, as they have less feels.

    I hope that explains. Otherwise, only washing your feet in good soap and wipe them very dry can keep germs out of them.
     
  5. Stemo79

    Stemo79 Senior member

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    It also prevents crotch fungus...
     
  6. traverscao

    traverscao Senior member

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    This is so going the wrong direction, mind you, I was serious about hand washing prior polishing.
     
  7. Stemo79

    Stemo79 Senior member

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    Sorry, I couldn't resist :happy::happy:
     
  8. Darell John

    Darell John Active Member

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    Man, you were actually serious about it.. I typically use a damp cloth to wipe my shoes prior to working on them. so while damping the cloth which I use my hands to transfer water to the cloth, because I want it just damp not wet..my hands inevitable get wet and of course I use the same cloth to dry them.. But I would never bother to actually use soap before.
    After for sure because I use my finger to apply the products.

    That said you must have a fit when people actually use spit to spit polish lol
     
  9. traverscao

    traverscao Senior member

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    Spit shine using actual spit is actually a fairly interesting topic.

    Imagine you're in the 82nd Airborne, 1942, when you have to make your Corcoran Jump Boots so shiny it blinds the officer's eye in somewhere hot, dry, and FUBAR as Camp Tocoa, you don't think of using water, because water supply is so precious, drinking too much is already a problem, let alone using them to shine. Therefore, spit was thus used by troopers. A lore existed, even, that drink booze before shining improves the shine - sorry dearly respected veterans, I cannot help but smile to myself sometimes.

    I don't harass people who use spit for traditional spit shining. God knows if they were actually vets who jumped through hell for us to enjoy good shoes today. Otherwise, it may just be habits - help people improve, if one can.

    P.S: If anything, DW can tell us more about these.
     
  10. dbhdnhdbh

    dbhdnhdbh Senior member

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    On a different note entirely.

    I took a pair of classic longwings to a long established and successful cobbler shop. Nice guy who has done good work for me in the past, although not resoles. I asked him to resole the shoes. He looked at the double leather soles and said they were too thick for him to resole.

    After that I contacted two of the mail order resole shops asking whether they can resole double leather shoes. The responses were virtually identical, leading me to wonder whether it was the same shop doing business under two names "I don't understand what you mean by double sole or that the shoes have a midsole. Maybe we can do it, maybe not. Send them in and we will see." The bafflement on the phone was hardly what I had expected from a place that does resoling. Left me with little interest in having them doing anything to my shoes.

    I have used B Nelson in the past with great satisfaction, but thought I would graduate my local guy from more minor repairs to a resole. I look at B Nelson as a premium service for more important shoes. These were just regular shoes,nothing special and maybe not worth the B Nelson price, so I sought something perhaps more convenient, less expensive, or both. Now I wonder whether the cheaper places are also quite limited in what they can do.


    I had never heard of this as an issue. I assumed, apparently wrongly, that resoling double soled shoes was an everyday routine undertaking at a cobbler shop. Does anyone understand any of this? Why would it matter how thick the soles are? For those of us with double soled shoes, it B Nelson the only place that can do this "unusual" work?

    Any responses would be appreciated.
     
  11. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    Older shops might have older machines. And the machine (curved needle stitcher) that does the outsole stitching may not be able accommodate the double sole....to fit that extra thickness in under the presserfoot.
     
  12. DWFII

    DWFII Bespoke Boot and Shoemaker Dubiously Honored

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    Probably a bit spurious. Spit is/was used because it's handy....and because it works--for most people(depends on body chemistry).

    I still use spit...in preference to water or alcohol.
     
  13. Nobleprofessor

    Nobleprofessor Senior member

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    I have had a few old Florsheim's resoled and I have seen a lot of others that have been resoled. What the smaller cheaper shops do is do a half sole. They just cut off and remove the outer sole then the sort of taper it down to be level with the back part. That is what one shop did on mine and it looked like crap. The next one took off the whole bottom sole (leaving the midsole). They didn't have an issue with the thickness in terms of stitching it. They just told me they didn't have the midsole and wouldn't remove it unless I wanted to just have a single oak sole rather than the proper double oak. There are newer shoes that double soles too. So, I don't know why it would be so difficult.

    Probably best to stick with B. Nelson -- they have an excellent reputation.
     
  14. traverscao

    traverscao Senior member

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    It builds into a habit, doesn't it, DW?
     
  15. mry8s

    mry8s Senior member

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    As you are all a fine bunch of bullers and polishers, I thought I'd let you in on an interesting trick that some other polishers use.


    The plastic baggie test.


    It's very simple. When you're polishing something smooth, your fingers have trouble discerning the true texture of the material. If you stick your hand in a thin sandwich bag and feel the surface through the bag, you will feel a lot more detail and texture. I bring this up because it may help some of you determine why your bulling is going badly or the shine isn't smooth and consistent.

    Next time you polish, try it. I suspect you'll be surprised what you feel.
     
  16. Josh Savage

    Josh Savage Senior member

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    [​IMG]

    Just bought my first pair of suede shoes last night. I bought the kit with the eraser and the brush. What else do I need to properly care for these and keep them looking new? Thanks in advance.
     
  17. traverscao

    traverscao Senior member

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    Cool trick!
     
  18. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Senior member Dubiously Honored

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    When bulling a sole I dab the polished rag right on my tongue, but then again I don't worry myself with traces of hazardous chemicals. My father has been washing his hands with break pad cleaner for years and he's still going strong, I can't imagine a little turp or limnonene is going significantly harm me.
     
  19. traverscao

    traverscao Senior member

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    Touching a little on your tongue does not really harm you, if your tongue is moist enough, it actually prevents yourself from inducing the chemicals. Otherwise, enzymes from your spit will literally try to dissolve everything.
     
  20. dbhdnhdbh

    dbhdnhdbh Senior member

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    Noble,

    Thanks for the reply. I agree I want no part of a half sole. I assume it must disturb the structural integrity of the sole, which is the platform of the shoe.

    DW,

    Informative as always. I have never actually seen this done, but if it involves essentially a heavy duty sewing machine, then there would need to be clearance to fit the full thickness in there.

    While I have your attention, is resoling a shoe something a handy amateur could do without buying expensive equipment? I gather someone who knows how to make an entire shoe can resole by hand. But what about a home workshop, and no training from an expert in shoe making? Expect a disaster and ruin shoes in the process? Or possible, but way cheaper in time and effort to send them to Nick?

    Thinking of it as a hobby activity, not a practical solution for someone who just wants their soles resoled.
     

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