miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

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dw
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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1026 Post by dw » Sun Feb 12, 2012 9:00 am

The problem I see with both of these methods is simply that the only major benefit to doing this is to create a "shaped" envelope prior to shrinking. Like an over-sized mean forme.

Obviously Rick's method addresses this somewhat but personally I'd like to see even closer adherence to the shape of the shoe.

When I SW'd the ostrich jodhpurs, I just used invisible vinyl (?) tape to seal seams. I experienced no problem with that at all. But I only used it at the back of the heel and over the toe. It might be a little problematic trying to tape two oversize mean formes together.

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1027 Post by romango » Sun Feb 12, 2012 2:58 pm

DW,

You are correct that my sealing method creates a better shaped envelope. It's almost enough to shrink without further taping. The advantage I find is a lot less tendency to get a fold of the plastic right at the critical feather line.

If I refine my hot wire design a little bit, I think I can get it very close to the shoe shape. Also, part of the challenge is to melt off excess in the correct sequence, which I have not worked out fully yet.

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1028 Post by romango » Sat Mar 03, 2012 12:22 pm

I want to have a collection of sample shoes to display, when the opportunity presents itself. I made this one with no liner, toe puff, heel counter or shank and used a cardboard insole. Of course, this is way less work than making a complete shoe.

I think that, on the next one I will add a faux liner along the top edge. I would also have at least one complete shoe, off the last, so potential customers may look inside and feel the weight etc.
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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1029 Post by paul » Sat Mar 03, 2012 5:46 pm

Rick,

If this were facebook, I'd click "Like"!

Not just the shoe and what it is, but the concept also.
I've been mostly talk about this for quite awhile now. Mind if I watch?

Paul

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1030 Post by 1947redhed » Thu Jun 28, 2012 9:51 am

My searches for "blind", "hidden" and "pump" stitches have netted an internal server error on all three queries so does anyone remember a tutorial, I think by DW, on how to sew blindly into the interior of the shoe and use one thread to pull the other thread back through? Need a refresher on the technique.
Georgene

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1031 Post by tomo » Thu Jun 28, 2012 12:59 pm

Georgene, go have a look at Tim Skyme's website. He shows George Koelof(sp?) doing it on a video.

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1032 Post by artzend » Thu Jun 28, 2012 1:44 pm

Georgene

The video of George is on my site, and also youtube. I don't know if he mentions it in the video but the holes are made with a peg awl.

Tim
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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1033 Post by danfreeman » Thu Jun 28, 2012 7:04 pm

Devlin describes this process, called "leading the blind," in his section on sole attachment methods. It is said to be extremely nerve-wracking and tiresome work.

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1034 Post by dw » Thu Jun 28, 2012 8:00 pm

Georgene,

It begins in:

The Crispin Colloquy: Open Forum: Techniques, Crans and Visualizations: Bottoming techniques: archive 301-325

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(Message edited by dw on June 28, 2012)

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1035 Post by 1947redhed » Fri Jun 29, 2012 2:16 pm

Thanks to all. Between the video on Tim's site and DW's tutorial, I've had the refresher info I needed.
Georgene

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1036 Post by dlskidmore » Fri Aug 24, 2012 10:59 am

Materials other than leather:

My last pair of shoes was made of wool felt, and it was very nice to work with. I expect it won't last as long as leather, but my feet are happiest in thin soled shoes that wear out on the bottoms first anyway. Does anyone else use materials other than leather for uppers? Any references you'd recommend for working with other materials?

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1037 Post by elfn » Fri Aug 24, 2012 11:16 am

I made a pair out of wool felt with pigskin lining. The footbed is not shaped to the back half of my foot and the throat of the shoe is too big. I'd take the same upper material, because it's lovely to wear, if I could just redo it with a better foot bed and tweak the upper pattern just a bit.
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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1038 Post by romango » Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:15 am

Here is how I make fitters for men's shoes.

I start with a tape form. It is optional to draw proposed pattern components on the tape, but I often do.
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The tape form is flattened on to a manila folder, traced and a lasting allowance added. Use an awl to poke holes along the component lines.
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The tape is removed and the vamp and quarter lines are straightened with a straight edge (arrows). The component lines are redrawn from the poked holes and I might smooth the top line out a bit if it seems bumpy.
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A sewing allowance is added along the top of the vamp and heel and the pattern is cut out.
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The pattern is transferred to the flesh side of some suitable leather. Component lines are transferred again by poking holes in the pattern.
The grain side is sanded on the lasting margin to allow glue to stick. Sew line guides are drawn on too.
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The two sides are held together with clips and sewn. Make sure to lock stitches at the top of the vamp and heel where there will be stress.
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Trim off the excess sewing margin and add laces.
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Stay tuned for part 2

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1039 Post by romango » Thu Sep 06, 2012 10:50 am

Part 2 - fitters

The fitter upper is lasted. For insole I use ~3mm shoulder. This is thin enough yo be easily formed to the sole without wetting and usually available as scrap at my local leather dealer.
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Next I add Celastic toe and heel stiffeners.
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The Celastic is heat activated using a cheap burner plate and a cage I rigged up with chicken wire.
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I use a clamp to hold the shoe to the bench so I have 2 hands free to stretch the Celastic.
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The Celastic is trimmed and sanded, if needed. Some time I need a little AP glue to hold the bottom edges of the Celastic or you can use a heat gun to make it stick anywhere it is loose. It generally sticks very well to the flesh side of the leather.

I add 2 tongue depressors as a shank.
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Finally, a sole is glued on from the same 3mm leather and I build up the heel using foam sheeting (what's this stuff called?) which is very easy and fast to cut and sand.
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A few notes:
* I always design my fitters so the lacing panels close completely, regardless if they are intended to be somewhat open on the final shoe. This makes it very easy to see what adjustments need to be made on when the fitter is on the customer's foot. Any intended gap may be added to the pattern later.
* You might get away without the Celastic but I think this give a better read on the fit and makes the fitter more robust if you want to let the customer take it home and wear it around for awhile.
* The foam heels are a bit squishy but that doesn't matter to me. I just instruct the customer not to pay that any mind.
* Having the flesh side out allows the customer's feet to slide easily in the shoe, as if it were lined. I don't want to get any false read because of binding of the foot in the fitter.

Of course, this is just how I do it. I'd love to hear tips and tricks from other folks too.

(Message edited by romango on September 06, 2012)

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1040 Post by elfn » Thu Sep 06, 2012 11:13 am

Ric, that is awesome! I got a number of tips from your tutorial! Thanks so much!

raving_raven

Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1041 Post by raving_raven » Thu Sep 06, 2012 12:22 pm

Rick, This has been the most helpful tutorial I have seen. The whole business of making fitters has had me anxious, because I have been so worried about wasting good material.

The photos are very clear and I love the heater cage. Thank you!

Rosemary

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1042 Post by kemosabi » Thu Sep 06, 2012 5:07 pm

Nice!

A couple Q's from the peanut gallery:

Any concerns with the top line stretching out of place, since it's not reinforced?

Curious; Is that cork I see being used as a shover on the last cone? (hard to tell from the pictures)

-Nat

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1043 Post by romango » Thu Sep 06, 2012 5:22 pm

Nat,

Stretching on the top line generally does not happen because the seam down the front of the vamp means one is not really stretching the leather much to get it to pull to the wood.

However, even if it does stretch, the resulting fitter still represents the last. So, what do I care?

I use cork sheet for last build-up wherever I can. It is much easier to shape than leather. Whenever building up at the feather line, I use leather because it may get nailed into and has to be more stout.

I do coat my cork build-ups with press cement to make them more slippery and water resistant.

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1044 Post by kemosabi » Thu Sep 06, 2012 6:09 pm

Rick, Thanks for the follow-up... and thanks for sharing.
I'm working on building up a pair of lasts as we speak, so this will come in handy.

Regards,
-Nat

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1045 Post by dw » Fri Sep 07, 2012 11:15 am

Rick,

Nice tutorial...thanks. I do somethings a little different somethings the same. I make my fitter's models as whole cuts and I do put a partial lining in them to accommodate a heel stiffener. I don't do a toe stiffener, inside or out simply because I want to feel where the customer's toes are relative to the end of the last.

And the older I get the less I want to work with acetone or solvent based materials. I used to think it was OK but I have noticed an increase of some physical problems/symptoms when I get too deep a whiff.

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1046 Post by romango » Fri Sep 07, 2012 12:00 pm

DW,

My thinking on the toecap is that I don't want the customer's toes to be able to distort the soft leather and think they feel fine when that area will be stiff and unyielding in the final shoe.

However, I can see that just being sensitive to that issue might be sufficient.

The Celastic I use is strictly heat activated. No acetone.

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1047 Post by 1947redhed » Fri Sep 07, 2012 1:45 pm

What you are using is not Celastic which is chemically activated. You are using heat set thermo toe box that I think you bought from me.

Georgene

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1048 Post by paul » Fri Sep 07, 2012 7:54 pm

Thank you Georgene.
I'm going to contact you about some of this soon.
Paul

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1049 Post by romango » Sat Sep 08, 2012 7:38 am

I don't actually know the brand and I did get it from you. I was under the impression that Celastic also makes a thermo activated product.

In any case, thanks for the clarification.

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Re: miscellaneous tips, advice, and cautions

#1050 Post by kevin_l » Thu Sep 20, 2012 12:45 pm

I have a confusion! My masters' book/video indicates not to use an upper leg leather heavier than the vamp, yet indicates "stays" for the support of the leg uppers.?

What is the difference in using "stays" or a heavier leather on the tops? If I do use a stay do I need to adjust the top sizes, and maybe even the throat?

(Message edited by Kevin_l on September 20, 2012)

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