Upgrade your sole, or re-tread a brace of old boots or shoes with beginning rubber. A mail-in account from Vibram gives cossack new life.
Founded in 1937, and today adorning millions of soles, Vibram elastic is an industry standard. A just-launched account from the company, the Vibram Sole Factor, offers custom cobbling to adjustment or accommodate elastic underfoot.
Sold as an artful comedy or a performance-enhancing option, the Sole Factor account offers dozens of footstep patterns. I alien a brace of shoes and some boots to the cast to try it out.
Go with big knobs and grip. Or, you can aces a failing sole for accidental use. The raw soles appear in all colors, alike camouflage, and about any footstep arrangement you can anticipate up.
Ordering is a simple procedure: Accept a sole from an online catalog; mail your shoes; and Vibram delivers a customized brace in a brace weeks.
You ample out a abbreviate anatomy to acquaint the cobblers, whose shops are in Queens, N.Y. and San Diego, Calif., what soles to add to your old shoes.
Starting amount is $75 per pair, which begs the catechism ‘Why not aloof buy new shoes?’ High-end boots or much-loved cossack that you don’t appetite to bandy abroad are obvious candidates for the service. A affection brace of boots can aftermost 10 – 20 years, depending on use, so a new sole could extend activity with the abstinent expense.
I alien some beat boots from Chaco as well as a brace of Montrail active shoes. My called soles, a cossack footstep for the Chacos and white, pavement-oriented elastic on the runners, would abuse the shoes’ achievement and accord them an under-the-hood facelift for a refresh.
In three weeks, my shoes arrived. My Chaco boots looked like new. The sole, a archetypal hiking arrangement with abysmal tread, had adapted the boots, which had smoother soles, into mud-tromping machines.
For the Montrails, the action with active elastic was mainly an artful play. I best a humble white footstep that’d be acceptable for active on pavement and roads.
Both pairs were able-bodied done. The footstep appeared to be activated from the aboriginal manufacture, admitting the claimed absorption they got by duke via a cobbler at the New York facility.
The elastic edges were hardly rough, and a smidgen of cement was arresting in assertive spots. But the elastic got smooth afterwards a bit of wear, and the cement was brindle off with a fingernail. I didn’t apperception the hand-hewn aftereffect of it all, as the adroitness was solid.
My shoe upgrades were conservative. Sure, I accept new elastic underfoot, and the boots now accept bigger grip. But with the Sole Factor you could go wild. Anticipate deep, knobby tread on dress shoes, or conceivably a camo burden on a well-loved abundance boot.
On a achievement front, Vibram offers abounding of its accepted elastic types and footstep options with the Sole Factor service. You can acceptable bout to an absolute sole on hiking boots or walking shoes.
Check out the Sole Factor for all the base options and accede a appearance change, a achievement rev-up, or to accomplish your arid boots new again. You can accept amid a ‘premium’ or ‘standard’ service, priced at $125 and $75 respectively. The two casework are run through Vibram by altered cobbler operations, Cobbler Concierge ($125, N.Y.) and NuShoe ($75, Calif.), and action altered acknowledgment speeds and accessories.
–Check out the company’s Sole Factor archive here.
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