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Feet Up! The Work Boot Thread

holdencain

One of the Regulars
Messages
113
Location
Harrisonburg, Virginia, USA
Red Wing Iron Ranger vs. Beckman? Thoughts?

I am considering the RW IR vs. the Beckman. I tried the IR yesterday in a 13D and the size was perfect. I have read that these are both on the same last.

Would those that have worn either/both please comment on fit and style. Pro/con? They both look fab! These would be worn w/ jeans and khakis.

H
 

JanSolo

Practically Family
Messages
879
Location
Ever so sunny Westphalia, Germany
I have both the dark brown Iron Ranger and the 1909 Centennial (now the Beckman). The Beckman has the higher quality leather (Horween Chromexcell steerhide) and has a full leather sole with rubber minilug overlays. All in all a very period correct construction. An excellent looking, hard wearing boot and when fitted with an adequate inner sole (felt, sheepskin) it's also a warm shoe for cold and wet northern German weather. It would receive my highest recommendations if...there wasn't the Iron Ranger!!!
The Iron Ranger is made from an oil-tanned hot stuffed leather which has a good pull-up effect. Due to the high fat/wax content it develops only very few creases and folds. The leather is quite dirt repellent and almost waterproof. I find the last to be narrower on my IR than on the 1909 (I have quite narrow feet so I like that fact). The cork/rubbersole is ultra-hard wearing (same stuff as on Alden 405 Indy Boots). It's stiff and firm but also very comfortable and very "silent". Walking in IR almost makes now sound at all which can be irritating because they are heavy and substantial boots. I have to admit that I like that fact. I hate boots that sound like you've invited the SS for dinner...
Bottom line is I love my 1909s but I usually grab my IR. They make your feet appear smaller, they are very comfortable (and silent), the leather is very low maintenance (although I recommend RW mink oil), the toe cap looks cool, the colour (dark brown) goes well with leather and cloth and all sorts or denim, and I love the nickel eyelets and hooks (which also make lacing much faster)...

Hope that helps.
 

Dav

One Too Many
Messages
1,706
Location
Somerset, England
I have two pairs of Iron rangers the 8111 and 8114, and love them. They do tend to give quite a bit when broken in, the 8111s are a UK9 (my normal size) but once broken they can only be worn with a thick sock although they seemed fine when new. The 8114s I sized down to a UK8 they were quite tight when new but after about a month of perseverance they are a perfect fit with a thin sock but tight with a thick one. Both pairs gave me blisters and made my feet very sore at first but are now fine. I also found them to be sock destroyers at first. Great boots though IMO.
I forgot to say that I applied a coat of RM Williams saddle dressing to soften them up, works a treat.
 

bentusian

One of the Regulars
Messages
259
Location
NYC
I ended up purchasing both models(9016 and 8111), and I believe you should/will, too. :) Both look great especially when worn with vintage jeans and chinos. Sizing is amost the same for both models.

Cannot add really much to previous comments, but I'd say BM's leather feels quite stiff, so it takes a bit of walking to break them in. To me IR's oil lethear felt much suppler. Also the standard outsole of Beckman seems to wear out faster. I'm already thinking of resoling them with Vibram outsoles.

At the end of the day, however, if I have to choose what to buy first (of course you're buying the other later), it'd be Beckman.

Edit: to add some shots of the said boots -

Beckman worn with LVC S501XX
DSC03503.jpg


Iron Ranger with some Japanese jeans (lost the chain-stitched hems..)
DSC03488.jpg


Cheers.
 
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Justhandguns

Practically Family
Messages
779
Location
London
I love my Beckman 9013. I like the classic design which goes very well with all sorts of jeans and trousers.

The problem, like all the others had said, is the breaking in time. In the beginning, I can only wear it once every two weeks because the spanking new boots are very stiff and they will give you painful blisters (not because they are too small). You definitely need a in-sole for it to be comfortable, it also prevents your socks from turing brown/yellow as the Redwings do not come with one, they are all lined with bare leathers. I have pretty slim and narrow feet, and yet, I still have problem with my last toes if I walk a lot with the Beckman. In general, you may need half a size or a whole size down for the Beckmans. I usually go for a US9 and the one pair that I've got right now is US8. But basically you'd just love it.
 

andy richards

Practically Family
Messages
647
Location
The Netherlands
Hi H,
I have 3 pairs of Red Wing and I all love them!
The Iron Ranger I wear the most. When ordering online I would recommend you make sure what size to choose as they are generally a half or one size larger.
Andy
 

Doublegun

Practically Family
Messages
773
Location
Michigan
Sort of. Ordered a pair of White's Travelers from Bakers about 18-months ago. Process was extremely easy and straight forward. Boots arrived as orderd and took about as long as they said they would. Before ordering I called a couple of times to discuss options and they were extremely helpful. I would not hesitate to order from them again.
 

53Effie

A-List Customer
Messages
420
Location
Orygun
I own several pairs of boots from Drews. No mail order experience, since I live within driving distance. Always a good company to deal with. I've been a customer there off and on since I was a youngster.
 

RobT

New in Town
Messages
28
Location
UK
Red Wing Boots

I have just purchased a pair of Red Wing 875 boots. Do any other forum members have these boots and what do you think of them? I intend to use them all-year round.
 

Dav

One Too Many
Messages
1,706
Location
Somerset, England
I quite like the look of them myself and have considered buying a pair, just wish they had a darker sole, not sure I could live with the white personally. Suppose they won't stay that way for very long though.
 

RobT

New in Town
Messages
28
Location
UK
Yes, I did consider this but thought that they would darken. I did some research; Red Wing no longer produce the Irish Setter but instead make the 875 (light brown) and the 8138 (dark brown).
 
Last edited:

Chinaski

One Too Many
Messages
1,045
Location
Orange County, CA
Yes, I did consider this but thought that they would darken. I did some research; Red Wing no longer produce the Irish Setter but instead make the 875 (light brown) and the 8138 (dark brown).

Red Wing makes the 899 which I believe is often compared to the Irish Setters of old. I recently bought a pair. They are American made, have a leather mid-sole, Vibram sole, 8 inch shaft, and reddish-brown leather. It's not a mocassin type toe like your 875, so it has a different look.

If you like the look of what you bought, I think you'll be happy with the Red Wings. It's a venerable old brand, and the only complaints seem to be that many of the models are now made in China. I don't personally know if this has affected the quality, but I am happy to know the 899's are American made. If one carries that logic too far the only acceptable boot is a Wesco custom made boot at $700 per pair. A bit rich for me...That's my $.02 for what it's worth.
 

RobT

New in Town
Messages
28
Location
UK
I like the look of the 875 and as far as I am aware, mine were made in the US. A couple of points which may be of use: the sizes come out big and it is recommended in the UK to size down half or one full size. Also, I am aware that some Red Wings are made in China. I have also heard that there is a Chinese company making copies.

Red Wing told me that the 875 is also close to the Irish Setters of old.
 

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