Lasting

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Richard

Lasting

#1 Post by Richard » Tue Apr 23, 2002 6:49 pm

I have just finished lasting a full Wellington boot. This is going to be my second pair of full Wellington’s, so this style seems very different. After lasting, I noticed that I get a wrinkle of leather just behind the cone of the last. Everything else seems to fall into place like it should. Is this wrinkle of material behind the cone common for full Wellington’s? Could this wrinkle be caused from the type of crimping board I use? Any suggestion would be helpful.

Thanks,
Richard

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Re: Lasting

#2 Post by dw » Tue Apr 23, 2002 8:47 pm

Richard,

Been there, done that, bought the tee shirt.The wrinkle could be caused by several things in my experience.

The first, and most likely, is that the boot is not far enough down on the last. Finding the break spot on a full wellington front blocker is not all that difficult but it can be tricky, because the break spot on the blocker is not necessarily where the boot will break when it is lasted--the way you would think it would be. The way you would expect it to be. The way it *should* be if you've got everything working just so. This is due to the fact that some of the relationships are not precisely the same on a full wellington as on a dress wellington. That, in turn, can be due to not so much the general shape of the board, but how much (or little) the foot/vamp is crimped. Not enough of an angle--"overcrimping"-- and the distance from the break spot to the insole line at the side seam is constrained...and that, in turn, prevents the throat of the boot from opening up.

Less likely, but still a possibility, is that the side draft is simply incorrect...or maybe the better way to say that would be to suggest that the way in which you are trimming your sides is not allowing enough "ease" along along the bottom of the "vamp"...rom toe to heel. This, in turn, prevents the boot from dropping down the front of the last and seating on the cone correctly, simply because you can't pull the "toe" far enough forward. But, here again, the upshot is that the boot is not far enough down on the cone of the last. Different reasons, same result.

I don't make historically accurate reproductions, and as a consequence I am not satisfied with any result short of something very similar if not identical to what I can achieve with a dress wellington. I want to see the boot seated properly on the cone. I want to see the boot standing straight and true--not leaning forward or back. And I want to be able to look down inside the boot and see that eh leather is close--real close--to the last, all around the cone and the heel of the last. I don't want to feel bridging in the waist or in the arch area or just ahead of the sideseams.

I don't know if you have checked out "Techniques, Crans and Visualizations" > "The Art and The Mysterie"--all four in the series--here on the Forum, but if you go back and look through those topics, you can see the type of crimping boards I use and how severely they are "cocked." This make a big difference but it isn't a panacea for all the problems that can plague a full wellington. When you consider the difficulties of just getting a set of blockers on the boards, in the first place...and all the ramifications of that struggle...and extrapolate from there, it seems to me that almost by definition, the full wellington is much less forgiving of pattern irregularities, imprecisions in assembly or lasting technique, and missing pieces of the theoretical puzzle than any other kind of footwear. That's why I call it the "bootmaker's boot."

Frankly, I wish I knew a lot more about what is going on *thoughout* the process than I do.

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Re: Lasting

#3 Post by admin » Mon May 06, 2002 6:54 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: Lasting

#4 Post by halvar » Tue Sep 10, 2002 12:12 pm

HI!

I´m an orthopaedic shoemaker in austria. I´m mainly making orthopaedic insoles and orthopaedic shoes. But as i am an big fan of country and western, and my hobby is westernriding, i want to make a pair of westernboots for myself. But as it seams that there is no chance of getting a pair of boot-lasts here in austria, and i have no idea of making a pair of lasts for westernboots, i am in trouble!

So i ask anybody in this forum for help to make a pair of lasts for my boots. I have raw last for "normal" shoes, that i change for my patients. Can I use one of these and what points must i pay attention to?

Thanx

Horst

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Re: Lasting

#5 Post by dw » Wed Sep 11, 2002 6:50 am

Welcome to The Crispin Colloquy, Horst.

With regard to "cowboy boot" lasts, you'll probably get as many opinions on this as there are makers.

For myself, I prefer an inside cone to the last. Long ago I bought into the notion that that configuration is the most comfortable simply because it echoes the shape of the foot.

Boot lasts generally have a little wide comb at the top of the heel than a shoe last. Boot lasts have perhaps a bit more toes spring than shoe lasts and, in my opinion should have little or no degree in the heel unless you get above an inch and a half in heel height.

Most importantly, in my opinion, a last that is suitable for making cowboy boots generally has more of the substance"pushed" up into the instep than a shoe last. A shoe last will have a lower cross section, in other words. This shape facilitates the opening up of the throat on a cowboy boot and at least partially prevents the tops from leaning forward.

Beyond that, you're going to modify each last to fit your customer so the rest is pretty much dictated by the measurements and girths you have to deal with...just like making shoes!

Hope that helps...

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Re: Lasting

#6 Post by gcunning » Wed Sep 11, 2002 11:31 am

Horst, since it might cost a lot more to get a boot last to you, modification of a shoe last might be your best bet. My teacher grinds on the last and uses buildups as well. He can pretty much build what is necessary, only limited by the lasts heel height. i.e.: trying to make a 2-1/2 heel out of a last that was designed for a 1" heel. So if you wanted to make what is called a "roper" (a low heeled boot) from a shoe last it should not be a great task. That is if you prescribe to grinding on the last. But I'm a newsier so if you try this method someone else will have to take you down the road.
Gary

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Re: Lasting

#7 Post by judy » Wed Sep 11, 2002 7:33 pm

Horst, in trying to modify lasts I've found the guidance from a "glass slipper".... clear packaging tape... 2 layers closely conforming to modified last, very helpful. I heard about it from a Merrel article in a leatherworkers magazine. It doesn't help with the effects of a modification... only the fit.

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Re: Lasting

#8 Post by paul » Wed May 07, 2003 7:01 pm

DW,

Thanks for spending a few moments with me on the phone. I apologize for not being able to finish the conversation as THREE people walked in as soon as you answered the phone. CAN YOU BELIEVE IT !?!

Anyway, I've attached a picture of my "choked" boot. I think you were right on when you mentioned that maybe the problem resulted from moving the tonque/quarter template down on the crimped vamp, when cutting it out. I've also attached a pic of the 'fitters model' I made, which she tried on this morning. She had no trouble with it and was excited to be getting her boots soon. I'm anxious now, she's Prescott's entrant in the Miss Rodeo Arizona Pageant next week. She's supposed to get hemmed with the boots in her dress on Tuesday! Big Break Down, to say the least.

So I'm stretching them with my Mallory stretchers now. If I can get them to drop down on the cone, then I think I'll be ok. I'll be prayin' all night, 'I'll tell you what'!

I understand that there is going to be a big screw-up like this sometime in my boot makin' career, and an unhappy and disappointed customer as well, but I'm still new here in Prescott and this little darlin' is the office manager for "The Worlds Oldest Rodeo". There's a whole slew of folks on the Rodeo Committee who know that Paul's makin' Kenni's boots. I don't know if charming enough to 'bs' my way outta this one. So this has gotta work. Won't be much dry time, but she's gotta have these Tuesday morning.

I'm very interested in whatever else you might have to add after looking at the pics I've attached.

Thanks again for being there when I needed to talk to somebody about this.

PK


\image
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Re: Lasting

#9 Post by paul » Wed May 07, 2003 7:06 pm

I guess you could say, I'm 'flummexed'. Here's the attachments.
2412.jpg
2412.jpg (30.98 KiB) Viewed 3433 times
2411.jpg
2411.jpg (21.81 KiB) Viewed 3433 times

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Re: Lasting

#10 Post by dw » Wed May 07, 2003 8:15 pm

Paul,

Not much I can add to what I said on the phone...looking at the boots I think your analysis of the problem is spot on. As I said, there are a number of things that could go wrong that would produce this kind of result but the bottom line is that there's simply not enough leather over the cone of the last--from the bottom of the sideseam to the instep. The fitter's models look right on the money, so it isn't the last and it isn't the tops patterns.

I admire you, immensely, for laying this all out on the forum and for all the world to see. That takes courage and a deeply ingrained sense of honesty and humility. You can talk to me anytime and any problem I can help you with I will be pleased to do so. I think you have it in you...if you want it...to be a very good bootmaker. Just don't let these things, no matter how momentarily catastrophic they may seem, discourage you. Learn from them. This is only one moment in time and as difficult as it might be right now, it will end up making you better. Remember that "what doesn't kill you, makes you stronger."

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Re: Lasting

#11 Post by shane » Thu May 08, 2003 11:51 am

Paul,
I know you and DW have this worked out, but I have had a similar problem on occassion. I didn,t have any problem with the boot fitting, so it wasn't as big of a problem as it could have been, but it sure isn't pretty or satisfying when it happens. I couldn't move my quarter curve template up the crimmped vamp any further as it would run into the rip stop holes that seperate the tongue and vamp. So I simply modified my crimp boards by moving the break line down further on the board. Fixed me right up. I don't know if this will help but there it is any way.
Good luck
Shane

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Re: Lasting

#12 Post by paul » Thu May 08, 2003 1:15 pm

D.W.,
Thank you. You words of encouragement mean a lot to me.
PK

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Re: Lasting

#13 Post by paul » Thu May 08, 2003 1:25 pm

Shane,
Thank you for your input as well.
Did you make new boards or reshape your existing ones?
I was also thinking I might have avoided this problem in crimping, if I'd used a smaller board. I've been trying to use one size fits all. These boots are a ladies 4.
How many of you guys use small, medium and large boards?
PK

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Re: Lasting

#14 Post by shane » Thu May 08, 2003 3:28 pm

Paul,
I modified my existing boards. Basically all I did was sand the break line down to make my boards more of a 90 degree angle. this moved my break line about 1/2 an inch down the tongue. I just made new boards and in three sizes. Before that I had a one size fits all. But the break line is roughly the same on all the boards. The extra size is in length and girth. My blockers now come about a 1/2 inch around the bottom of the boards where they are tacked, unless it is something stretchy like shark. To make my three sizes I just took a crimped vamp of each size ( small, medium, and large) and traced around them as they would lay on the board. Then I just extended my crimp board pattern or shrank it to fit my tracing. I hope that all makes sence. Maybe I will post a pic or two of them if you would like.
Shane

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Re: Lasting

#15 Post by dw » Thu May 08, 2003 4:41 pm

Paul, shane,

I use a one size fits all board for all my boots--from size 3 to 16. The real issue is how far you let your vamps slide down the board when crimping them. Consider: I use essentially the same patter of "foreboard" for my full cuts. There is no relief cut into the blocker pattern...so...the solution might be a combination of things...try keeping your "tongues" high on the board; cut smaller relief holes; make your relief cuts shorter (the logic proceeds from the full cut example); be very careful about keeping the vamp "balanced" on the board so that one side does not pull down further than the other. Making the boards more of a 90 degree angle also would help but if you are doing a higher heel you will still have to "spring" the vamps "away" from that 90 degree angle and that too can cause some problems. Still it's a good solution as long as you understand the theory.

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Re: Lasting

#16 Post by gcunning » Fri May 09, 2003 5:18 am

Paul,
The boards I use (when I get too) are not small, medium, and large. They are different though: high, medium and low heel. The way I was taught it works for me.

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Re: Lasting

#17 Post by gcunning » Fri May 09, 2003 5:20 am

BTW
The template to cut my tongue is marked: high, medium and low as well.

tkmusic

Re: Lasting

#18 Post by tkmusic » Wed Nov 12, 2003 9:56 pm

a quick question. I just finished trying to last a pair of boots in ostrich. However, while I was making the pull at the instep, the ostrich started to tear at the edge of the piece. This ostrich was supposedly tanned in Florida, which city I don't know. This is my first experience with ostrich so I'm wondering if this might be a bad skin. I just mulled it in plain water. Any input would be very greatly appreciated. Since I'm just getting into this fantastic craft, I would like to say up front that I enjoy everything I've read on the forum. It's a real blast to share knowledge and ideas. Thank all of you very much!!!!!!!!!

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Re: Lasting

#19 Post by dw » Thu Nov 13, 2003 7:41 am

TK,

Welcome to the Crispin Colloquy!

Sounds like you are having troubles. We've all been there and some of us have even bought the T-shirts! Image

Domestic Ostrich has always seemed dry and lifeless to me. A lot of it has to do with the environmental restrictions placed on the tanners--they have to be extra careful about effluent and that determines what oils and fat liquors they can use. It costs more, but I wouldn't use anything but Klein Karoo ostrich (South Africa--Durland Larson Sales), the difference in feel, hand and life is simply remarkable.

If the ostrich is ripping at this stage of the game however, it is a good bet that it will not give good wear or value even if you do get it on the last.

That said, I always partially back even the Klein Karoo. The backing can be a thin (2 oz or less) piece of kangaroo or calf lining cemented, with all purpose, to the margins of the vamp blocker--leaving a teardrop shaped open area in the middle that will correspond to the top of the foot.

I know this doesn't help your present situation but maybe it will help in the long run.

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Re: Lasting

#20 Post by gcunning » Thu Nov 13, 2003 12:07 pm

DW
Can you show a picture? Not like you have one right now but when you do.
I am going to finally jump in and do a pair (probable be next summer) and I have been worried about this. I did buy my skin from D & L.

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Re: Lasting

#21 Post by dw » Thu Nov 13, 2003 7:42 pm

Gary,

I have a photo or two and will knock out a quick drawing to make the photo and the technique (?) more understandable. Give me a day or so...the photo's in the camera but the drawing is still in my head.

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Re: Lasting

#22 Post by dw » Thu Nov 13, 2003 9:05 pm

Gary,

I had a half hour or so to kill, so I did the drawing. Sorry if it's a bit crude. I think you get the general idea though. The edges of your partial backing need to be skived of course and ideally they will only rise above the inseam by an inch or so except along the sideseam. You can determine the dimensions of the "clear" space in-between the two backing pieces by measuring from one inch above the featherline on the last, across the joint/ball, to one inch above the inseam on the other side. Subtract an arbitrary figure for stretch and there you have it.

First the drawing:
2623.jpg
2623.jpg (34.19 KiB) Viewed 3433 times


Then the photo...here's a boot front with an ostrich vamp and the vamplining peeled back so you can see the backing:
2622.gif
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Re: Lasting

#23 Post by ken_irvin » Fri Nov 14, 2003 4:28 pm

DW,

Thats not a crude drawing, quite good actually. Is that a free hand drawing scanned in or some type of CAD/CAM program you are using?

Good photos today also.

Ken

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Re: Lasting

#24 Post by dw » Fri Nov 14, 2003 5:15 pm

Ken,

I'm using CorelDraw. The drawing is done in the computer directly. Usually, with drawings such as these, half the drawing is done to scale and then mirrored and then merged to form the larger pattern

In this case, I had the vamp pattern already stored on my HD (it's one of the patterns in my CD book) and I simply reduced it to a size that would fit in a monitor window and then created one of the partial backing pieces as a separate object. I filled the backing piece with 10% grey and sent it one layer back of the pattern. That brought the cuts in the blocker pattern to the front. Mirror again and voila! Then I converted everything to gif format which allowed me to set RGB colour 255 (pure white) as the transparency colour. That, in turn allowed the colour of the Forum itself (the light tan you see) to show through.

Thanks, but it is crude. If I had spent another ten minutes or so with it, I could have eliminated the mismatch of edges between the backing piece and the blocker.

It's not hard at all with the proper software ($300.00 to $600.00)

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Re: Lasting

#25 Post by gcunning » Sun Nov 16, 2003 10:51 am

Thanks DW

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