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PU Tops AGAIN!!!

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Did a stilletto repair this week where I had to get the sleeve out of the heel. After much sweat the tube came out but left that nasty piece of rod, that manufacturers say is necessary for strength, stuck inside the heel. Couldn't work out how to get that out, so hoped for the best when I replaced the sleeve. That's when the sleeve didn't go cleanly over the rod and tried to come out the front of the heel. Fortunately I wasn't using my 10lb lump hammer on it so managed to stop before serious damage was inflicted. I did eventually coax it over the rod and completed the repair OK. Anyone else come across this problem? Any tips to pass on?

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  • 1 month later...

on some of these if you look under the insole there is a little nut which you can use to take the steel rod out of the tube then put the top piece on before shortening the rod if neccesary and replacing it. If I remember right I think this was in faith shoes.

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This method was also used by Jones the Bootmaker a couple of years ago and I believe the pin was used to strenthen the tube that was not at that time made from spring steel, the heel block could bend under heavy use if the pin was removed and not replaced.

A practice that is becoming more common with shoes being manufactured in the far east. I remember when the chinese first copied stilettos, they used aluminium tubes which resulted in you being able to bend the heel block with your hands, also remember one very large retailer having to refund and replace many thousand pairs.


Please be careful when heating up tubes with electric pliers, the heels are made from Polystyrene (or ABS on some of the stronger ones) smoke/fumes from polystyrene can be lethal. It is the Styrene fumes in furniture fires that cause the deaths through inhalation. (use a suitable mask).

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  • 3 weeks later...
these pins in the tubes are getting more common and the only real reason for them is to limit the number of times you can bang the old pins down, we get loads of snapped heel blocks with these in so the reason cannot be for strength.


That is not the reason danny, that is your theory and a wrong one at that.

A manufacturer would not expect you to "bang" old pins down, they would expect you to remove them!!!

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how do remove them when the customer has worn them down completely and they cant be drilled


No such thing as "Cant be drilled" danny.

There is no manufacturer this side of the Moon that uses Pins either in PU tops or Metal tops that cannot be drilled.

If there is a Tube with a pin insert then it can be drilled.

Not everone is capable of drilling difficult pins without damage to the heel block, there is a sequence of events to go through to ensure minimumheat transfer combined with maximum cutting power using a suitable bit.

Have you ever seen an Engineer drill steel with a high soeed bit in a drill that operates at the speed of the ones in shoe repair shops?

They use stepped control with a cutting compound.

Slow speeds cut without too much heat being generated.

High speeds cause friction/heat especially with a used bit.

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  • 2 months later...

All the more reason to use a bench mounted drill stand if only for the H&Saspect.

Are they still using Alloy tubes?

Is it the Chinese syndrome all over again.

I know that 1 manufacturer is using them but puts a stainless pin in that goes right through to the heel seat to stop them tubes from bending as the earlier ones did.

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