Shoe question: replacing a glued rubber sole with a glued leather sole?

Discussion in 'Andy's Fashion Forum' started by ScarletDrew, May 10, 2016.

  1. ScarletDrew

    ScarletDrew New Member

    44
    United States
    New York
    Chester
    Is it common-place, worthwhile, or even desirable to resole shoes with new leather out-soles if they were originally constructed with glued rubber out-soles? Some back story...

    I dug up a 14 year-old pair of well-worn J&M shoes from the bowels of my closet over the weekend and thought I'd take them to a local cobbler. I wasn't expecting much, but I'm such a novice when it comes to dress shoes, I figured it'd be worth finding out what, if anything, he could do for them. I bought these for a wedding long before discovering this forum and learning about fine footwear.

    Now, these shoes were originally made with a fake welt and a rubber out-sole. What I thought was a partial leather out-sole is actually a thin layer of leather glued to the rubber. When the cobbler explained all this to me, I was ready to get rid of the shoes until he told me what he could actually do for them.

    He said he could remove the old rubber out-sole, sew on a thin layer of new rubber as a mid-sole, and glue on a new leather out-sole, effectively "dressing up" what I once thought were decent dress shoes. I must admit I was as intrigued as I was incredulous when he suggested this to me. He's been in business for a long time, is well regarded, and offered to do the job for me at a fair price (which includes re-dyeing along with the resoling). Impressed with his ambition, I told him to go for it.

    I pick up my shoes in a week. Is anyone out there familiar with this kind of "repair"? Any ideas of what I can expect? Or am I just wasting time and money?

    My thanks to those who read through this entire post; I look forward to your replies.
     
  2. Checkerboard 13

    Checkerboard 13 Senior Member<br>Moderator

    United States
    CA
    HP
    Admin Post
    I've not heard of such a thing, but will be interested to learn the outcome. Please update us, and post pictures!


    Given that he is well regarded and that he was quick to propose a somewhat involved process, I think I'd be inclined to give it a chance, as well, as long as the price was fair.

    Perhaps one of our resident shoe repair experts will be able to enlighten us. (Nick, are you reading this?)
     
  3. eagle2250

    eagle2250 Connoisseur/Curmudgeon Emeritus - Moderator

    Harmony, FL
    United States
    Florida
    Harmony
    Were the shoes in question mine, I suspect I would have left the shoes the way they were. Given the nature of the original construction, I doubt the shoes were one of J&M's better quality offerings and regardless the cost of the present day cobblers efforts to resole them, the improvement is going to be cosmetic, not qualitative. You will sill have one of J&M's lesser quality shoes. Sorry. :(
     
  4. rtd1

    rtd1 Active Member with Corp. Privileges

    416
    United States
    NJ
    Central
    I wouldn't spend any time or money trying to resole or upgrade an old pair of cemented construction shoes. Put that money towards buying a decent pair of goodyear welted shoes on sale.
     
  5. Nick V

    Nick V Senior Member

    743
    United States
    New York
    New York
    What you're repairman is suggesting is certainly doable. In fact he can probably stitch the out-sole to the mid-sole. That would make the shoe blake/rapid construction. Blake/rapid is the most solid construction made. If you are interested in doing that contact him before he completes the job. Let us know....
     
  6. ScarletDrew

    ScarletDrew New Member

    44
    United States
    New York
    Chester
    Thanks to all for the feedback. While part of me feels like I'm installing a Bose sound system in a Yugo, I'll stay positive as I await my shoes. Expect pics, provided all goes smoothly....
     
  7. Checkerboard 13

    Checkerboard 13 Senior Member<br>Moderator

    United States
    CA
    HP
    Admin Post
    Nick's word is gold in regard to shoe repair.
    Whether or not you're putting Bose in a Yugo, is another story!
     
  8. damon54

    damon54 Active Member with Corp. Privileges

    376
    United States
    Texas
    Dallas
    I had a cobbler perform the process NickV describes on a fairly modern (Made in India) Cole Haan model. It worked very well indeed. I still own them & use them for foul weather days to protect nicer offerings in the fleet.
     
    Last edited: May 12, 2016
  9. ScarletDrew

    ScarletDrew New Member

    44
    United States
    New York
    Chester
    I picked up my shoes today. I failed to mention last time that these shoes were made in Italy and are Johnston & Murphy "Passports." Here's the first two of 6 pictures:

    1.jpg 2.jpg
     
    Last edited: May 20, 2016
  10. ScarletDrew

    ScarletDrew New Member

    44
    United States
    New York
    Chester
    ...and here's the second two (I'm very pleased with the dye job on these):

    3.jpg 4.jpg
     

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