The shoe fits but what caused the blister?

#46
I'll throw my 2 cents into the arena. I make my living on my feet in the woods off the beaten path doing archaeology tech work. So does most of my family, my sister fights fire on a hotshot crew, my dad was a firefighter for the forest service, and my grandpa was a forester. We all own custom made shoes because working feet are an absolute necessity for us.

I got my first pair of custom shoes this summer and I will never go back to off the shelf stuff for any serious walking again. They build the boots to your feet, and let me tell you the fit is like nothing you've ever experienced. The leather and stitching are much higher quality in hand made shoes than OTS, . I wore Georgia's last summer and in 4 months of work the leather was stretched and they leaked like a sieve. I worked longer this summer and my boots still fit tight and are waterproof even though they are untreated leather.

They do cost a lot more, my Kulien's were almost $800, but my grandpa's were 40 years old when he sold them and dad's are 17, so I look at it as an investment. There's still a lot of shoemakers around and if you have the cash and really love your feet, you should pay one a visit.

Also don't wear cotton socks, you should see less and smaller blister's without them. Plus cotton doesn't wick, so if you're feet get wet they stay wet. Here's a scholarly article on the subject of socks and blisters.
http://www.ipfh.org/research/docs/friction_blisters.pdf
 
#47
Well...

I got the Lowa Banf Pro boots in on Friday at the store and laced them up. My fears were confirmed... These boots in a B width are too wide for me, requiring me to really lace up tight at the instep area and up to stay in place in the boot and keep from hitting the toe box on a downward slope. This is always the problem with boots like that. The instep portion of the boot (from the heel to the instep point) is too long for a narrow, low-volume foot.

I'm having to send these back, so I'm going back to the Red Wing work boots I mentioned and tried on at home. I'm waiting on the model without the steel toe to come in. They fit really nice, and I will take them to the other Red Wing store with the facilities to resole them...

Stephanie
 
#48
And the boots finally came in last week. I took them a few days later on Friday to be resoled with Vibram lug soles at the Red Wing shop. I picked them up yesterday and tried them on today. Looks great to me! Now, I have to break them in and see how they break in. The Vibram soles are stiffer and thicker. I can't tell if they are any heavier than my old hikers. I now have mid-weight backpacking boots that fit me well. The downside to them is, they only have an arch-length fiberglass shank, which is about a 2.5"X3/4" straight strip. I'm not a very heavy person, and I don't intend to backpack anyway, but to hike trails. At least they should stand up to my use for year. I'm getting ready test these and if they are good to go through the break-in period, then I'll buy two more and resole them before storing them.
 
#51
My Russells fit really well and require no break in, realize others on this site have had problems with custom orders, I have'nt. Second your opinion about American made work boots in hot dry climate, I wear Chippewas with Vibram and after breakin are very comfortable in hot conditions( Deep South Texas in the summer). I do think that an unlined 6" work boot with a slightly loose fit at the top allows a bellows effect that ventilated the boot while you walk. I was always curious why outdoor workers in my area always wore slip on boots rather than lace up, realized after trying that they ventilate far better and your feet stay drier and cooler. Obviously not an option for an environment that requires stability. Another option is this company https://lathropandsons.com, highly regarded by some very demanding customers, offer 3D fitting and custom foot beds. While they sell well known high end boots they recently started to offer their own boots made by a small Italian bootmaker.
 
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