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leather ½ sole graft - tutorial


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This tutorial is as a result of this topic

http://www.shoerepairer.info/bb/viewtopic.php?t=2575

 

The purpose of writing this tutorial was to not only show members my own technique for the waist graft on leather ½ soles and in doing so maybe improve someone else's joints, but also to question my own methods as I know there are many on the forum with more knowledge than my own.

 

So here goes! The leather half sole graft!

 

First of all its important to understand just where to do your graft, this is difficult to put into the words of a tutorial but I will attempt it!

 

All shoes have a natural bend point on the ball of the foot & then stiffen as they reach the shank & waist area. You graft should be at the point where when holding the sole onto the shoe & flexing the toe you feel little or no movement where the graft will be made.

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no good!

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For the perfect joint make sure your new sole is the same thickness as the old one!

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You also need to allow enough room from your heel block to the edge of the sole for your stitcher to stitch the entire way around the sole. Typically this will be around the 25mm mark.

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Once you are happy with the position of the sole edge, draw a line along it.

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DON’T do your scouring by eye, a line drawn on each shoe will mean both are scoured in exactly the same angle & distance from the heel block.

 

Next remove the old sole with about 30mm of old sole remaining, this will form your skive, Remove old stitches & prepare in the normal way.

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Now begin feathering down the original sole on your finisher.

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Once happy with this run your smooth wheel along the line you made on the shoe & even out the skive.

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Once complete you should be able to lay a ruler on your nice neat edge, which should be around .75mm in depth

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Now by eye feather down the replacement sole, once compete as shown the skive will be around the 30mm mark.

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The joint should look good & smart even before it is attached to the shoe, next attach stitch & finish in the normal way.

2_DCP_0025_1.jpg

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Once complete the joint should be smooth with no variations in thickness.

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I can not emphasise enough the importance of where to start the joint, if in doubt simply make sure you put it as far back as the replacement sole will allow. But above all else DO NOT NAIL IT!

 

Lee

 

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Nice one Lee, Good job. Not that far away from how we do it.

I don't do all the measuring, but understand why you did it in this tutorial.

You get the knack for the measurments after 30 years.

 

There are a hell of a lot of repairers out there that would do well to emulate this tutorial.

 

I did some trade stitching this morning, and the waist was coming away before I'd even stitched em.

 

157_DSCF2427_1.jpg

 

How bad is that..... :x It is almost just butted up to the cut off original sole.

And not the slightest attempt to remove any off the old stitches.

When I bent the shoe the joint just opened up.

I suppose he will stick 10 nails across them. :roll:

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I always nail because it was the way I was taught.If I hadn't seen this forum then I would have thought it was the norm.

 

I dont see many repairs from others that have not been nailed but those that haven't seem to lift at the waist.

 

I soled a pair of cowboy boots today and didn't nail them.They looked quite smart without the nails.I just hope 2 coats of neoprene and a good roughen will hold them :oops: :shock: :wink:

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I nail waists because thats the way i was shown!

I can graft waists on as good as anybody but no matter how much glue used they will lift.

Its like the competition "thing" when you do a half sole you have to stitch through the waist line to have a continuous stitch looks lovely, but hardly practical?

So where possible i will try and do thru soles but when not i will always nail the waist.

So why do all you guys nail heels on?(because theyd f*cking fall off)even using two coats of glue!

Im all for trying something "new" but "better" is down to aesthetics and i think nailed waists finish a shoe off.(not in UKs sense of the word :lol: )

INCOMING

carry on!

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Methinks that job Lee would be described as a 3/4 sole, not many pre-cut soles will fit like that on a size 10 and over, if any. No you dont need Rivets if you bring the waist down that far (wrong waist angle by the way) but what a "waist" of material, another Inch and you have a through sole, almost the same material cost but over double the price to the customer.

 

Let me say this to all you no Riveters.

Put a half sole onto a shoe and mark it like Lee did, then bend the shoe with the sole on it and see how far the sole moves up the waist. (you can do the same experiment using 2 half soles back to back)

A Goodyear construction is where the sole is stitched to the welt using settable wax on the thread, this means that the thread stays in the sole during flexing of the sole and welt, on a worn pair you will see the movement as you bend the shoe.

This is the technical theory behind Riveting, so that the waist can give a little and allow expansion.

What you now do (most of the reapir trade) is to glue the soles on before stitching and glue the waists of half soles allowing no movement as you saw from the bending experement something has to give and in a lot of cases this would mean that the Waist comes apart or the Welt stitches break down.

There was a reason why soles were not glued on by the manufacturers when they are being stitched on a Goodyear stitcher and the statements above are the reasons.

Regards,

Technical Tony of the Cobblers Round Table & Bootmaking Freemasons :wink:

 

After all that ranting I forgot.............. Nice job Lee.

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Nice job Lee, however I like hugh feel that the waist line is a little to low for my liking. As a general rule, the deaf blind repairers from the 50s use their fingers to judge distance, 3 flat fingers from heel breast on the inside and 2 flat fingers from the outside. Also when cutting the original sole I prefer to cut a half moon shape, which leaves more leather in the middle to bond to.

 

As for nailing the waist, well I too was shown that way when I first started in the trade but was converted by minit. They had to many complaints of poor repairers using wrong size tingles causing damage to shanks and insoles. :shock:

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I nail waists because thats the way i was shown!!

 

Shown by who, just because you were shown by some one with more knowledge than you at the time doesn't mean they were right.

In this case they were wrong :wink:

 

I can graft waists on as good as anybody but no matter how much glue used they will lift.

 

No you can't, If your grafts are lifting you are doing something seriously wrong. Mine NEVER lift. And I'm not saying that out of bravardo, I'm truly serious.

 

matter how much glue used they will lift.

 

It seems that you think the more glue used the better, In fact its quite the opposite. The more glue you use the more the likelihood it will come adrift. I would guess this could be part of your problem.

 

 

Its like the competition "thing" when you do a half sole you have to stitch through the waist line to have a continuous stitch looks lovely, but hardly practical?

 

I'm not sure I understand what your getting at here, I always stitch 3-4 stitches past the waistline. why is it not practical ???

 

So where possible i will try and do thru soles but when not i will always nail the waist.

 

Thru soles are always the best repair, and will build your business a great reputation for quality workmanship if done to a good standard.

improve your technique on your half soles and ditch the nails.

 

 

So why do all you guys nail heels on?(because theyd f*cking fall off)even using two coats of glue! .

 

I'd have thought it was obvious. our nailing into a solid block which doesn't flex, and your not nailing into the very comstruction of the shoe, damaging it.

However you don't have to nail all gents top peices on, I follow the manufacturers lead.

 

i think nailed waists finish a shoe off..

 

Your right there :twisted: :twisted: :twisted:

 

carry on!

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:lol:

Im not doing it wrong none of my waists come undone!

I dont overglue due to a previous discussion and topic regarding pasting several layers of glue onto leather soles!

stitching through the grafted waist line makes the outer edge of both sides of the shoe the weakest link, this has been discussed by myself with several older and far wiser than me!(this is okay for competition work because no one is wearing the shoes)

cant really say much more than that.

oh..... :wink:

carry on!

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Methinks that job Lee would be described as a 3/4 sole,.

 

Nope, a 3/4 sole goes half way under the heel block.

I wouldn't normally go back as far as Lee has in his tutorial, but I have done when the customer doesn't want to go for thru soles and the previous repairer has ruined the graft with nails or scoured to deep into the shoes waistline to get a good fixing.

 

 

 

Let me say this to all you no Riveters.

Put a half sole onto a shoe and mark it like Lee did, then bend the shoe with the sole on it and see how far the sole moves up the waist. (you can do the same experiment using 2 half soles back to back)

A Goodyear construction is where the sole is stitched to the welt using settable wax on the thread, this means that the thread stays in the sole during flexing of the sole and welt, on a worn pair you will see the movement as you bend the shoe.

This is the technical theory behind Riveting, so that the waist can give a little and allow expansion.

What you now do (most of the reapir trade) is to glue the soles on before stitching and glue the waists of half soles allowing no movement as you saw from the bending experement something has to give and in a lot of cases this would mean that the Waist comes apart or the Welt stitches break down.

There was a reason why soles were not glued on by the manufacturers when they are being stitched on a Goodyear stitcher and the statements above are the reasons.

 

That is clutching at straws, to try and justify ruining shoes with a nailed waist.

Its a clever theory and one that I am well aware of, but I'm sorry It still doesn't justify nailing.

For a start two leather soles back to back, isn't the construction of a goodyear welted shoe. You have a fairly rigid leather sole and a supple welt and upper.

Although there is still movement, its nothing like the movement that two leather soles back to back would have.

 

I mentioned earlier that the nails are knocked into a cavity, filled with soft cork, a wooden shank, the playrib and the feather of the upper and welt stitches and finally going through the insole and hitting the last to form a barb, Now if that doesn't cause damage on the way in, then it certainly will when the next repairer tries to pull them out.The barb that formed when hitting the last isn't designed to come out. So when it is pulled out it will definatly cause damage.

Surly you can see that.

 

Answer this........

Do you not agree that if you have mastered the art of a graft good enough to not need nailing, that this is far better for the shoe.

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:lol:

I dont overglue due to a previous discussion and topic regarding pasting several layers of glue onto leather soles!!

 

You said you did in your previous post

 

:stitching through the grafted waist line makes the outer edge of both sides of the shoe the weakest link, this has been discussed by myself with several older and far wiser than me!(this is okay for competition work because no one is wearing the shoes)

cant really say much more than that.!!

 

No it doesn't if done correctly. :wink: :wink:

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Nice job Lee, most customers and repairers would accept that job as a quality one :wink:

 

Two points I'd like to make though, as others have said, the waist does seem a bit low to me, but, whatever works for you and your customers.

 

Also, your band needs changing. The picture shows evidence of burning. This can be a major contributory factor in waists coming unstuck! Change the band more often or keep one for leather only, this will help. The sharper the band, the rougher the surface, the better the key for adhesive. Burnt leather doesn't stick well at all :wink:

 

Keith

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:stitching through the grafted waist line makes the outer edge of both sides of the shoe the weakest link, this has been discussed by myself with several older and far wiser than me!(this is okay for competition work because no one is wearing the shoes)

cant really say much more than that.!!

 

No it doesn't if done correctly. :wink: :wink:

 

Whats the difference between a correct stitch as apposed to an incorrect stitch...at the risk of having me head ripped of :wink: :wink:

I dont stitch through the waist because I think it looks neater and my machine doesnt get down that far comfortably when the heel block is on

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Whats the difference between a correct stitch as apposed to an incorrect stitch...

 

I'm not sure I saw this comment anywhere :?

 

at the risk of having me head ripped of :wink: :wink: ...

 

Don't be so wet Michael, Its a good debate. Nobodys ripping anybodies head off. :roll:

 

 

I dont stitch through the waist because I think it looks neater...

 

It doesn't look neater at all, if youv'e removed all the old stiches. infact it looks a lot neater. :wink:

 

 

and my machine doesnt get down that far comfortably when the heel block is on

 

I agree there, sometimes its best to take off the heel block.

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Also, your band needs changing. The picture shows evidence of burning. This can be a major contributory factor in waists coming unstuck! Change the band more often or keep one for leather only, this will help. The sharper the band, the rougher the surface, the better the key for adhesive. Burnt leather doesn't stick well at all :wink:

 

Keith

 

Its a good point Keith, Only problem is, Some of the bands today burn the leather from the off.

A good way to stop this is to skive your waistline with your knife (remember those) before scouring. This leaves a lot less friction needed so as the leather doesn't get to hot and burn.

I also use a roughing up tool afterwards if I think there isn't enough "nap" on the serfaces. Can't remember what its called, help me out here Hughby :shock:

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Only thing round thats wet is the bloody weather!!!

Aint stopped raining all night and still going,pity really,started of looking a really busy week but has all been washed away.

 

Anyway,I have tried grooving and stitching through the waist,especially on riding boots when you definitely dont want lift on the waist for safety reasons,but what do you do when the groove doesn't run in line with the original groove/stitching.Thats when it tends to look a bit bodged.

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Anyway,I have tried grooving and stitching through the waist,especially on riding boots .

 

You can always get through sole out of your customer if you explain the reasons why.

but what do you do when the groove doesn't run in line with the original groove/stitching.Thats when it tends to look a bit bodged.

 

Well Michael, thats cus you've done a cack job. Take em off and start again, putting the grove in the right place this time. :lol: :lol: :lol:

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The purpose of writing this tutorial was to not only show members my own technique for the waist graft on leather ½ soles and in doing so maybe improve someone else’s joints, but also to question my own methods as I know there are many on the forum with more knowledge than my own.
Also, your band needs changing. The picture shows evidence of burning. This can be a major contributory factor in waists coming unstuck!

The band is old, hadn’t really thought of it from the bonding point of view before as I never have problems with the bond! But I have changed it this morning (knuckles wrapped , lesson learnt)

 

Nice job Lee but id still nail the waists 8)

carry on!

I soled a pair of cowboy boots today and didn't nail them.

Actually Michael you jogged my memory, to one of the few times I do nail or wood peg a waist and that is with cowboy boots, as UK said

I follow the manufacturers lead.

 

however I like hugh feel that the waist line is a little to low for my liking.
I wouldn't normally go back as far as Lee has in his tutorial,
the waist does seem a bit low to me, but, whatever works for you and your customers.

Seams to be a bone of contention for you all! in most cases I graft as far back as possible, I do not see how you can have the waist line to far back! Only to far forward (causing joints to come unstuck!) perhaps we should not be discussing nailing a joint, but where a good joint is made!

 

Mine NEVER lift. And I'm not saying that out of bravardo, I'm truly serious.

2_DCP_0038_2.jpg

I replaced the Heels on this repair today, the old heels where Philips topline (which I used to use) these have been obsolete for years. My graft has stood the test of time.

 

Its funny how the fundamentals of repairs needs to be discussed(and quite rightly so) at this stage of forum.

Some things are obvious but sometimes you take the obvious for granted.

A cracking paragraph that! But I believe the fundamentals should be discussed regularly, techniques change, glues change, shoe builds change. Discussing such things strengthen the trades ability to adapt to such changes & improve itself.

 

Lee

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Well Michael, thats cus you've done a cack job. Take em off and start again, putting the groove in the right place this time. :lol: :lol: :lol:

 

On shoes that have been repaired many times the sides around the waist have been skimmed so much that the stitches are very near the edge.The groover on my machine is not adjustable as far as I'm aware so will put the groove a few mm inside the original stitches.If I could adjust the groove blade(just spotted a small grub screw so may be wrong about not being able to adjust) and continue round the shoe in line with the old stitches, then wont the stitches/groove be too close to the edge of the new soles,giving no room for finishing.

 

Sorry to keep on but I am trying to learn something to improve my work a little more.I only had about 3 years of being taught before my boss became ill.Eveything else since I've learnt myself. :(

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