Insole leather

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Insole leather

#1 Post by admin » Mon May 06, 2002 6:56 am

All messages posted prior to 25 February 2002 have been moved to the first Crispin Colloquy CD Archive. Those interested in obtaining a copy of this CD need to contact admin@thehcc.org

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Re: Insole leather

#2 Post by gcunning » Sun Nov 03, 2002 3:25 pm

I have removed the insole from an old Justin boot that fit real well (yes I know- heresy). I pulled out the insole and laid it on my foot drawing. It was 3/4 of an inch more narrow in the instep than the drawing. I sat it on my foot and it fit perfect everywhere yet was very narrow in the instep. This was a very comfortable boot. Yet, how could it be if it was that narrow in the instep? It never felt tight to me.

Brian thanks for the response.

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Re: Insole leather

#3 Post by gcunning » Mon Nov 04, 2002 12:53 pm

You mean to tell me there is not one person that has an answer or an opinion about my question??

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Re: Insole leather

#4 Post by dw » Mon Nov 04, 2002 1:26 pm

Gary,

Well, I waited but since no one else has come to your rescue...

It's hard to picture what you're talking about. But first off, if a boot has been worn a while the insole will shrink...sometimes a lot.

Secondly, the width of the insole really doesn't have much to do with whether a boot feels tight or not. That's more in the girths than in the width of the insole although seat width can be critical.

Third, if you ever do a pedograph (it's like a fingerprint for the foot) you'll see that only on rare feet does the arch area of the foot touch ground all the way across. Usually the arch doesn't even touch ground as wide as it does in the heel area. A "drawing" of the foot simply cannot capture an accurate image of the plantar surface of the foot(especially weight bearing) unless that drawing is made by someone with a lot of experience and knowledge. And the catch is that a more experienced maker, capable of making that drawing, will probably favour the pedograph every time...especially once he's used one.

I don't know if I interpreted your question correctly; I don't know if I answered it to your satisfaction but perhaps these observations will help, at least.

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Re: Insole leather

#5 Post by gcunning » Mon Nov 04, 2002 2:27 pm

Yes, I think so. It was frustrating. I looked at that insole and thought: "if this is the right size insole I'm really doing things wrong".
I do remember a conversation on Pedograph's but can you describe use and where to buy one??

texrobinboots

Re: Insole leather

#6 Post by texrobinboots » Mon Nov 04, 2002 3:01 pm

Gary,

I don't remember seeing your question but I could not have answered it anyway. I don't know how you relate the bottom of an innersole to your instep. The bottom of your foot is only part of the instep girth,and the arch and has nothing to do with the rest of the boot that encircles your foot. So it wasn't a very clear question to begin with...TR

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Re: Insole leather

#7 Post by gaid » Mon Nov 04, 2002 4:16 pm

Gary,
If you will try to use a pedograph the only thing needed is a sheet of blotting-paper and a carbon-paper. Damp the blotting-paper and put the carbon on top of it. Make the drawing of the foot and in the waist area use the pen in a 45 degree angle. That is all you need. I have been using that method in the ortopaedic trade for many years. The Company Otto Bock have made a new kind of sheet, "all in one" style. I have not yet tested it, but others have with a good result. If you can't find blotting-paper and carbon-papper in W.F. you could buy it through the Company Götz, it is called Reichenau foot print paper.

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Re: Insole leather

#8 Post by gcunning » Mon Nov 04, 2002 5:14 pm

Thanks guys
I know I did not make it real clear. The point was I laid that insole up against my foot thinking it should be an outline of my FLAT foot. It wasn't and it kind of freaked me out. I use the drawing of the outline of a foot to make an insole. I just thought there might be a problem.
Janne
Thanks for that tip I will try it.

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Re: Insole leather

#9 Post by dw » Mon Nov 04, 2002 7:32 pm

Gary,

I got my pedograph through Arensberg from Goetz. It consists of a metal frame about 4" x 12" across which is stretched a sheet of latex or neoprene. The metal of the frame itself is only 1/4" thick, so the sheet of latex is level with one side of the frame and offset from the other by the thickness of the frame. When you lay the frame over a piece of paper the latex is suspended off the paper by the thickness of the frame...1/4". This is what you want.

So...you ink up the underside of the latex. Lay it on a sheet of paper and have your customer step onto the dry side of the latex. This forces the inked side into contact with the paper making a print of the weight bearing surfaces of the foot. You can trace the outline of the foot with a stylus or a round point modeling tool.

I trace with the stylus as close to perpendicular to the ground as I can get it. I do not trace under the arch because I believe that the pedograph will give me the information I need when the foot prints.

You can make your own pedograph from aluminium screen door framing and a sheet of medical latex...or so I've been told--as I say, I bought mine.

I never shape the insole in the arch like the flat foot even if the foot is printing wide. The boot will support the foot under the arch in such circumstances and if your measurements are right, the customer will be happy...as you yourself can attest to. If you fit the insole wide, you risk making an ugly boot at the very least for no appreciable gain in comfort. Shape the insole to the last, but watch the seat and joint width...that's important.

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Re: Insole leather

#10 Post by gaid » Tue Nov 05, 2002 4:23 am

D.W.
--------
I do not trace under the arch because I believe that the pedograph will give me the information I need when the foot prints.
--------

Hmm, that's interesting. The reason why we use the pedhograph in the orthopedic trade is that it will give us the info we need to make the inserts. I don't use it as a guide when making the arch on a last, for that I use the drawing from the pen in the 45 degree angle. The imprint from the pedograph tell you which part of the foot who have contact with the ground. I think it doesn't tell you all you need to make the arch.

I know there are makers who make their lasts without both the pedograph and using the pen the way I have described. To me that is the same as groping in the dark. I am impressed that they could make lasts that fits. I would be lost without that drawing.

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Re: Insole leather

#11 Post by gcunning » Tue Nov 05, 2002 12:29 pm

Janne
I'm having trouble seeing the 45 degree thing. Where do you start the 45? It
surely can't be kept at a 45 all the way into and back to the heel at 45????
Also I was taught the get the outline of the bottom of the foot sitting in a chair and
placing the foot on paper. Then trace around angling in slightly.
Then when you build the last get the last to fit the shape of the drawing and then add
or subtract in places to get the fit.
I'm probably not explaining well but that's the best I can do.
I do think I'm going to try an adapt this pedogragh if I can figure out how to make
my last from the drawing and pedograph.

-Isn't it embarrassing that a Justin can fit that well? It kind of bothers me.-

Tex Robin

Re: Insole leather

#12 Post by Tex Robin » Tue Nov 05, 2002 12:44 pm

Gary,

My advice to you would be to quit worrying so much about it and learn the fiting one pair at a time. You will learn things along the way that no one can tell you.

When I am fitting a last I first get a last that fits from the heel to the ball. Then I measure the last. If it is not right I build it up or grind it down(yes DW grind)to fit, size and length. After a few pair of boots you will start to see if the last is right just by the measurements. Forget about making the last to fit the outline of the foot. This is not how it is done. As you discovered, your foot doesn't look like the innersole. The measurements tell 90% of it all. Remember one pair at a time. Start with your wife and relatives and then your friends and then take orders from customers. You will build your confidence as you go..And you will have some bad misfits...I guarantee. One more thing . I have never seen a pedograph and don't see the need to....TR

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Re: Insole leather

#13 Post by gaid » Tue Nov 05, 2002 4:07 pm

Gary

The way I use the 45 degree thing depends on the feet I'm about to make a pair of last for.
In the orthopedic trade I sometimes do it from ball to ball around the heel. When making a last for a "normal" foot I just use it on the inside of the foot as you can see on the photo. The photo also show a line on the outside, well I'm so used to make it the "orthopedic" way I sometime make a line to much. I don't use the pedograph for making none orthopedic lasts, but you could. If nothing else it might impress your clients.
2291.jpg

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Re: Insole leather

#14 Post by gcunning » Wed Nov 06, 2002 6:17 am

Thanks again guys.
I'm still just gathering info. I have made several lasts for my self. Tall heel, Roper heel, a couple of different toes. It is the only way I can keep in practice. It's so funny every time what I learn. Just as I think "I'm getting it" I figure out, I'm not.

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Re: Insole leather

#15 Post by dw » Wed Nov 06, 2002 6:46 am

Gary,

When you take a pedograph of the foot, what you see...what you get...is an imprint of the weight bearing surfaces of the foot. Of course this means that there must be weight on the foot. I always take the pedograph with the customer standing up. The upside of this is that it accurately reflects the situation that will apply when the boot is actually being worn. The link Jake provided, shows a pedograph and if you look carefully at the illustration, you can see that a pedograph can even show where more weight is being brought to bear. This additional information is not only useful to a maker, but it confirms the accuracy of the concept itself.

When you create an insole, its main purpose is to be a platform to support the weight bearing surfaces of the foot. Why would you want a platform (insole) that is wider than the weight bearing surface of the heel? Why would you want an insole that is wider than the weight bearing surface of the forepart of the foot? The foot will not spread any wider than it spread when you made the pedograph. The extra width in the insole will just create a gap between the foot and the edge of the insole--unused. Insole will be hanging out beyond the foot.

Creating an insole that is narrower than the weight bearing surfaces of the foot is less of a problem...as long as your measurements and girths are accurate. The foot will hang out over the edge of the insole but the vamp will, to some extent, still support the weight bearing surface of the foot. Taken too far, however, this can cause problems with walking over and inordinate wear and tear on the vamp. The vamp leather is, in most cases, not intended for walking on the way the insole and outsole is. And for some people, the "lifting" of the bones in the first and fifth metatarsal area that occurs when the weight bearing surface of the foot is not allowed to come into full contact with the insole, can cause or aggravate problems.

A maker can almost use the pedograph as a template to cut his insole. In fact, that has been done and advocated by highly respected shoemakers for more years than any of us have seen. I don't do it that way...entirely...but I choose a last that will yield an insole that is as close to the pedograph as is possible without distorting the bottom shape of the outsole--the shape of the outsole in wholly dependant on the shape of the insole.

So the only exception to the "insole-equals-pedograph" is in the arch area. There are people who don't print at all in the arch--pes cavus. It is nonsense to create an insole of two pieces...one that honours that gap between the heel and the forepart. And there are people who have, essentially, flat feet. [ I'm not talking about people with abnormally fallen arches...that's another problem altogether ] In such cases, it is also problematic to create an insole that is as wide as the arch. The bottom of the boot will be clumsy and, more importantly, the foot will be no more supported than with a narrower insole. The vamp itself will provide all the support that the foot needs...if the measurements and girths are correct.

If you take a pedographic imprint and choose your last correctly, the last itself will tell you how wide or how narrow to cut the insole. Making an outline around the pedograph can give added information that can be extremely useful. But a pedograph combined with solid measurements (including "stick" or length measurements ) can, in most cases, provide all the information you need to make a pair of beautifully fitting boots or shoes.

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Re: Insole leather

#16 Post by gaid » Wed Nov 06, 2002 2:37 pm

D.W.

You know by know that I don't use the pedograph when making none orthopedic lasts. The reason is that I don't think it is needed simply because most of our clients have "normal" feet. But if I would change my mind and start using it I would use it for its purpose. Which I think you have described very good;
"When you take a pedograph of the foot, what you see...what you get...is an imprint of the weight bearing surfaces of the foot"

Later in you last posting you wrote;
"When you create an insole, its main purpose is to be a platform to support the weight bearing surfaces of the foot."
Man, I couldn't have said that better my self.

But why do you change your mind when it is about to make the insole for those with flat feet? It is even of more importance for those that the insole is a platform which will support the weight bearing surfaces of the foot. I can't see any problem in making the insole regarding to the informations of the pedoghrap. So what if the insole will be clumsy! That is the shape of the foot.

Do you really mean this?
"more importantly, the foot will be no more supported than with a narrower insole. The vamp itself will provide all the support that the foot needs...if the measurements and girths are correct."
If so the whole idea with the pedograph will be of no use because you are not following its informations. So why use it in the first place?

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Re: Insole leather

#17 Post by dw » Wed Nov 06, 2002 5:59 pm

Janne,

First, remember you are making shoes that, for the most part have low heels. Second, remember that with a shoe, the vamp seldom rises as high as the front of the ankle the way it often does in a boot. Then too, with a shoe...and laces...there is great variability in the snugness over, and *under* the arch. Third, the very fact that cowboy boots have a high heel makes a difference in the way that the weight is distributed.

Again, I was not talking about orthopedic feet. But I, myself have flat feet, so I have direct experience with how wide the insole needs to be under the arch.

What I have experienced is that because the vamp rises so high on the foot, because it "hangs" from Sabbage's 5th section; and because (and *if*) the measurements are so close, it acts in much the same way as the cables on a suspension bridge. It won't correct the flat foot but neither will it make it worse. that's personal experience speaking and I always trim my insole narrow din the arch.

And because we have a high heel, the way in which weight is transferred during walking is much different than on lower heeled footwear.

Moreover, I have found, from personal experience, as well as with customers, that those with flat feet don't experience any discomfort if the insole is narrow...**nor** any notable increase in comfort if the insole is wider.

If the measurements and girths are correct, it probably doesn't make any difference either way...except aesthetically. So...if making the boot with a wider insole makes it hard to put a heel on, or makes it hard to fit the stirrup, or makes an ugly or clumsy boot...well, all things being equal, I will opt for beauty every time.

Finally, I would point out that this is certainly no bright idea of mine. Look at old cowboy boots. Look at old women's balmorals, look at old, old men's boots, the insole and the outsole in all instances will be even narrower than is the common practice today.

As for the pedograph, let me say this...I used to measure and draw an outline almost exactly as you describe it. It was an OK way of doing it if you were careful and deliberate...maybe more than OK as you gained experience. But it was also unreliable. You say you draw under the arch at a 45 degree angle. Are you sure about that? Is it exactly 45 degrees...every time? Or could it be 44 degrees some days and maybe 47 degrees the next day?

Even with the old "tracing block" that fixes a pencil in a block of wood that is run around the customer's foot, there is a certain margin of error. What if the person has real fleshy, soft, squishy feet as opposed to real muscular hard feet? Won't that make a difference in how close to the "substance" of the foot you can come?

I use a flat piece of formica (very thin) as a stylus and I'm here tom tell you that even after thirty years of tracing the foot, I still cannot guarantee that I am holding it absolutely perpendicular (90 degrees) to the floor every inch of the way around a foot--*one* foot...much less perpendicular around *all* feet.

You won't have that problem or that uncertainty with a pedograph. How the foot prints is the most accurate representation of the weight bearing surface...as well as the general shape of the foot...that can possibly be obtained...short of digital imaging.

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Re: Insole leather

#18 Post by gaid » Thu Nov 07, 2002 1:38 pm

D.W.
Well, you are an eloquent orator! You have almost convinced me that your way is the way ;-)

Ok, I don't know if the heel height or that the vamp rises so high on the foot will have that input you are talking about. If so, you are up to something that we in the orthopaedic trade know nothing about.

Of course am I not always holding the pen in the 45 degree thing. I’m sure it varies. But still, it is a method that is reliable. I am working in a shop where I am surrounded by living friends and colleagues that use it every day.

I try to stay out of everything that make last making complicated. As Tex said "You will build your confidence as you go. And you will have some bad misfits...I guarantee." Our bad misfits is a better teacher then all the pedographs in the world.

I think you have said before that you where not making inserts, right? So what do you do with all the information you get from the pedograph? The only thing we use it for is to make the bottom of the last according to the imprint and when doing that you need an insert. Why? Because you will not have any featherlines left in the waist area, they are now shaped like the foot. Also, you will probably have some "bumpers" corresponding to the met. heads. The featherline will be made on the bottom of the insert and the "bumpers" will sink down in the insert. Without making the inserts I think of the pedograph just as overflow of informations. That is why I am not using it when making none orthopedic lasts. For making the rest of the last we use the tracing of the foot both the 45 and the 90 degree thing.

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Re: Insole leather

#19 Post by dw » Thu Nov 07, 2002 7:03 pm

Janne,

You ask me what I do with the pedograph. Well, I use the pedograph to match the heel of the last with the print obtained from the pedograph. I want that to be absolutely accurate...not merely close.

I use the pedograph to match the width of the forepart of the last with the joint width of the foot. Again, I want that to be accurate.

I use the pedograph to check the toe length and to help me determine where the first met head sits relative to the second met head. I draw a line that runs between the first and second metatarsal heads and back to the center of the heel. This is the "line of muscular action." On my lasts I can orient my last on that line.

I use the pedograph to check for hot spots on the plantar surface.

I use the pedograph to determine where to place build-ups --for instance if a person has a high arch and the last is still coming up short, it make sense to place the build-ups on the dorsal surface on the last in preference to anywhere else. Simply because a high arch usually indicates a high instep. A low arch indicates more "meat" under and below the instep...and so that's where I might put my build ups.

Coincidentally....or more likely, serendipitously...this all syncs with my ideas about short heel/long heel, very well.

When all is said and done, I guess I approach it a little differently than you and Tex. I regard the collection of data from the foot as **the** most important procedure in boot or shoemaking. And I want *accurate* information...that's why I won't rely on a pencil. I want data that relates directly to the foot and not to my guesses about the foot...I want, as far as possible to avoid any and all approximations of the foot. To my mind a tracing will not give you anything *but* an approximation. Don't get me wrong I still make a tracing but I *use* the pedograph far more than I use the tracing. It simply yields more useful information. And I want every tidbit of information I can gather that is pertinent or relevant. As I have said many times..."Anyone can be a bootmaker, it's only muscle memory. The real accomplishment is to be a fitter."

Maybe all that adds up to someone who is a poor fitter...or maybe it adds up to someone who's determined *not* to be a poor fitter. But that's the way my mind works. I'm a linear thinker. An empiricist. I *like* science. And I like the way my methods yield reliable, *_repeatable_* results.

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Re: Insole leather

#20 Post by gaid » Fri Nov 08, 2002 4:43 am

D.W.

Thank you for your explanation about the way you use the pedograph. It is always interesting to hear about how other use the same tool.

However it is my strongly believe that the pedograph is not more accurate then the pencil. Especially if as you do, make the imprint with weight on. You have to guess how much weight the client put on when you make the imprint. And it will seldom be the same weight on both foot. And if you repeat it the next day and come up with exactly the same result, well then you just have luck and nothing else.

Also, if you want to come close to what "accurately reflects the situation that will apply when the boot is actually being worn" you must have the client up in the same heel height as the boot will have. If you want to do that you must use the blotting-paper and a wedge according to the bottom of the last you are about to use. It will make a different that's for sure, especially on your heigh heeled boots. That is what we are doing in the orthopaedic trade when needed. But with no weight on. We never make any imprints with weight on, simply because we think it is not an reliable method. When we use the pedograph, the same as yours, the blotting-paper and the new Otto Bock thing we have the patients/clients sitting on a chair with the foot flat on the floor with leg vertically straight. With the scanner we have them sitting on the chair but with the leg straight towards the scanner which is in the same hight as the chair.

On this side of heaven there will be no reliable methods regarding making lasts. It is a “feeling” thing. On the other side of heaven I don’t think we need any boots, thank God for that!

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Re: Insole leather

#21 Post by dw » Fri Nov 08, 2002 5:59 am

Janne,

Look who's being eloquent now! "...this side of heaven," indeed. Image

However, that's the problem isn't it? No method we use is entirely 100% reliable or accurate. My approach is to eliminate as much guessing as is humanly possible. That's what the "scientific method" is all about, after all.

I sense we are at an impasse here, so I'll let it go with this observation...you seem to be saying that "weight on" for you is achieved by having the customer sit down and lean over his feet. A lot of makers take this approach. It must work...for them at least. But that's not "weight on" in my book. Nothing short of standing, with weight evenly distributed, through the pelvis and between the two feet, is "weight on." After all, the idea is to replicate the weight bearing surface when the customer is **using** his feet for bearing his weight. That one small difference in perspective, might alter the results significantly. I think it would. Either that or I'm the luckiest bootmaker alive.
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Re: Insole leather

#22 Post by gaid » Fri Nov 08, 2002 7:03 am

D.W.
Me eloquent? Thank you!

Well, I agree we are at an impasse so I'll let it go with this observation. I'm afraid I am not as eloquent as you might think because you read me wrong about what I ment with "weight on". But that is ok because of your compliment above ;-)

Michael Anthony

Re: Insole leather

#23 Post by Michael Anthony » Fri Nov 08, 2002 11:28 am

DW,

Where you and Janne's conversations have come to a dead end, my observation will lead to a new one-way road down which you are traveling in the opposite direction.

With the information that you obtain from the pedogragh, to my notion, when properly used, the only conclusion possible is that the finished last must be shaped like the foot.

This is exactly what I have been saying all along, I am glad that you finally agree.

Today is a great day....

Michael

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Re: Insole leather

#24 Post by gcunning » Fri Nov 08, 2002 12:01 pm

I was taught to measure in the seated position.
Because this is how the foot needs to be held. That when you stand and put weight on it the bare foot expands and flattens. That is the way I understand it.

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Re: Insole leather

#25 Post by gcunning » Fri Nov 08, 2002 1:12 pm

Everyone keeps talking about this "feeling thing"
It seems like last making is just like the English classes I sat in on. i before e except after c then there is neighbor and weigh. I always felt there was an exception to everything in English. That is what I feel about last! How can Tex, Carl, Janne, DW and all the others all have happy customers and have so much difference in opinions about last fitting. So it sounds like (I'm not saying its true it just sounds like) any ol method works. Usually when I learn something I can glean a little from those in the "know". But with a last its "measure exact here and here and Oh it's a feel here" just blows my mind.

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