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Vibram, dainite, veldtschoen. rubber

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by matcha, Oct 6, 2004.

  1. Isbister

    Isbister Senior member

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    Kent, UK
    The Ridgeway is named after a long distance footpath in Southern England, a route that pre-dates the Roman invasion. It has an advantage over the Commando sole in that it is less prone to trap lumps of soil between the lugs. With Commandos, the soil eventually dries and shrinks, then it falls out - usually over one's best rug.
     
  2. SuitedDx

    SuitedDx Senior member

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    Bumping this thread again. I've recently been interested in veldtschoen construction. When I lived in NYC, veldtschoen boots didn't cross my mind as much since I lived in the city; however, I now live in MI with more opportunities to tread non-concrete terrain. Veldtschoen is reputed to have water repellent qualities but I assume much of this is also affected by the type of leather used. I believe walking around in a field, stepping in puddles here and there, will be fine with veldtschoen boots and minimal water will soak in. Since water seeps into leather eventually, I assume walking in ankle deep water (i.e., a shallow ravine) for >10 meters or so will eventually let some water in (via the uppers more than through the sole/welt), correct? I have no experience with veldtschoen and I would like to hear from others that use them as country/trail boots.

    Also, any recommendations for veldtschoen boots since there seems to be limited suppliers now? I really like the AS Selkirk but it looks to be discontinued. I know the EG Galway, Cheaney Pennine & Fiennes, and Herring Windermere are some options.
     
  3. SuitedDx

    SuitedDx Senior member

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    Got the info on another thread...just had to read past a number of heated posts. :) Carry on...
     
  4. Isbister

    Isbister Senior member

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    I have AS veldtschoen in both boot and shoe form. The method of construction is absolutely watertight - I was in the Peak District last weekend and after a whole day trekking through mud, my boots were entirely dry inside.

    Wading through ankle-deep water might only prove a problem in that water might be able to get past the tongue, which is only a half-bellow. I believe the old Lotus boots had fully bellowed tongues.

    The leather itself is just ordinary zug grain, but slightly waxy - I don't mind a dull finish and tend to use dubbin, but it might be hard to polish to a shine.

    Tricker's seem to have given up making veldtschoen - Edward Green, Crockett & Jones and Cheaney seem to be the only options now.
     
  5. Expat Simon

    Expat Simon Active Member

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    I just thought I'd add a reply, as there's potential for confusion with the usage of the 'Commando Sole' term, for some of the people who've been on here asking questions recently.

    When there's talk of 'Commando' soles, it's referring to a sole pattern, that on English-made shoes used to always be branded with the words 'Commando Style by Itshide' (or something very similar). I can remember a beautiful old pair of English-made Goldtop M-C boots, from years ago that had that wording moulded into the instep of the sole. I should have never got rid of them...

    The potential problem for many people coming to SF now, to ask new questions about shoe soles, is that these soles don't have 'Commando' written on them any more. Instead on most of the current English-made footwear they instead have 'Genuine GoodYear Welt' (plus 'Made In England') written in the instep instead.

    I don't know if the ITS (Itshide) company ceased production, or if they've merely re-branded their soles, but either way, it's potentially confusing for anybody who has never owned an older pair, with the original & integral 'Commando' branding. Of course the Vibram company make a near identical sole pattern that we'd also refer to as Commando, but it's only got the Vibram logo on it, with no mention of 'Commando' (and never has had, to my knowledge).

    Similarly, this isn't relevant for the old-hands on SF, but it's the same situation when us shoe-aholics talk about 'Dainite Soles'. When we talk Dainite, we usually mean the studded sole pattern, made famous by the UK's Dainite company. But again, several other companies have got very similar versions of that studded sole design, which often get called Dainite soles (because of the pattern, even when they're not necessarily from the actual manufacturer Dainite).

    I just hope that might be useful clarification for some people who've seemed a little unsure, in a couple of shoe threads.



    In answer to one of the earlier posters, I'll also add my experience to the mix. For me, leather soles are the most comfortable of all, they mould to your foot shape the best, they breathe really effectively and they seem to cushion your walk in a very natural way. But I won't wear them in the wet, because they can get very slippy and also because I feel like I'm mistreating them. I've also had my foot start to lose it's grip (in the dry) on a motorbike, so I haven't ridden in leather soles in a long time.

    Dainite soles (the real ones, by the Dainite company) are just superb for their durability (particularly the black coloured ones, strangely enough). Personally, I pick them for city wear when it might be wet. They can still be slippy on some really polished surfaces, but I wear them all the time riding a motorbike and they've always been grippy enough on any normal street surface.

    Commando soles wear quicker than Dainite in my experience, so I'm sure they're a softer (and grippier) compound. But they are great if you're not always going to be on a hard pavement type surface. However they get so much stuff stuck in the tread, stones seem to be magnetically attracted to them. They're great on a bike too.

    So personally, my footwear constantly varies -according to the weather, to where I am, to what I'm doing, on the season etc...

    Oh, DpprDr, I think that C&J have a really nice veldtschoen cap-toe boot, or maybe I'm imagining it?
     
    1 person likes this.
  6. Carl1955

    Carl1955 Senior member

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    Chester UK
    Just received in the post the latest Joseph Cheaney & Sons catalogue which states the following regarding their Country Collection

    " This rugged yet stylish selection of shoes for casual wear includes a number of styles of Veldtschoen construction, a skill now practised by only a few shoemakers"

    Here's an example

    http://www.cheaney.co.uk/collection...untry-derby-veldtschoen-in-burgundy-grain-p80

    Thought this may be of interest


    Regards

    Carl.
     
  7. BenjaminZeev

    BenjaminZeev Senior member

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    Boston, MA
    Since I have started wearing leather soled shoes, I have found a good leather sole, while may be a little slippery on wet or very smooth surfaces, is just more satisfactory to walk in. When I first started I was concerned with wear and slipping, but I have not had really any problem with either factor. That being said I am getting lulu’s installed on my next pair of shoes by the manufacturer.
     
  8. Savage113

    Savage113 Member

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    Robe, South Australia
    I have just ordered a pair of Alfred Sargent Coldstream shoes (veldtschoen) as I am fascinated by their construction. I work in a country town and live on a farm in southern Australia. Good walking shoes and boots that are rugged yet smart for the high street are my stock in trade. I was unsure whether to buy boots or shoes of veldtschoen construction. My request to Isbister is could he describe the pros and cons of his veldtschoen shoes and boots? Cheers John PS This my first post.
     
  9. Isbister

    Isbister Senior member

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    Sorry I've been a bit slow in replying, Mr Savage. I've been away for a while.

    You were lucky to find a pair - AS only seem to make veldtschoen footwear on a rather sporadic basis. Tricker's no longer make them.

    The shoes have the advantage that they can be worn almost anywhere - the boots just seem more out-and-out rugged. It depends what you're doing, but I do find the boots more comfortable and obviously in a damp climate they are just a lot better. The shoes seem closer fitting - I believe the boots are sized to allow for thicker socks.

    Cons? The zug grain is very robust but quite hard to bring to a shine, if that matters to you. I've never been certain what is the best polish for them, but usually tend to use a neutral wax. Other men sometimes stop you in the street to ask where you got them from.
     

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