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muddy wet boots help

tmal

One of the Regulars
Messages
115
Location
NYS
I have a pair of Ariat roper style work boots. A couple days ago they got caked in mud. I had no choice but to wash them off with a garden hose, which I just did. When the they dry I plan to brush off the remaining mud, which is not too bad. I have Lexol cleaner and conditioner. My questions: Is it better to dry them out quickly or slowly? They are quite wet but not soaking wet. Any hints on the use of the Lexol, I've never used it before.
 

belfastboy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,139
Location
vancouver, canada
I have a pair of Ariat roper style work boots. A couple days ago they got caked in mud. I had no choice but to wash them off with a garden hose, which I just did. When the they dry I plan to brush off the remaining mud, which is not too bad. I have Lexol cleaner and conditioner. My questions: Is it better to dry them out quickly or slowly? They are quite wet but not soaking wet. Any hints on the use of the Lexol, I've never used it before.
Dry them slowly. I would use water to remove most if not all the mud. I would want them clean before using the Lexol cleaner. If there is still caked dried mud rubbing them with the cleaner you risk pushing the grit further into the leather, scratching/scraping the leather as you rub. The Lexol should be used as a final cleaning step to remove the last of the grit and then the conditioner to replace the oils you removed with the water. I use shoe trees in all my boots especially after getting them wet. It helps, using cedar trees, to dry the inside and stops the wet leather from curling up at the toe. Then a final coat of good shoe polish to restore the finish, the colour. The some edge dressing to restore the colour to the sole edge. Voila, boots like new.
 

belfastboy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,139
Location
vancouver, canada
Dry them slowly. I would use water to remove most if not all the mud. I would want them clean before using the Lexol cleaner. If there is still caked dried mud rubbing them with the cleaner you risk pushing the grit further into the leather, scratching/scraping the leather as you rub. The Lexol should be used as a final cleaning step to remove the last of the grit and then the conditioner to replace the oils you removed with the water. I use shoe trees in all my boots especially after getting them wet. It helps, using cedar trees, to dry the inside and stops the wet leather from curling up at the toe. Then a final coat of good shoe polish to restore the finish, the colour. The some edge dressing to restore the colour to the sole edge. Voila, boots like new.
Also saddle soap is a great step and the foaming action of the soap helps lift and remove the grit before the Lexol cleaner step.
 

Ernest P Shackleton

One Too Many
Messages
1,180
Location
Midwest
Slow, air dry. Now that they're wet, you might as well clean them the best you can. I'd just use water and a soft brush, like a soft toothbrush. Shoe trees are definitely good if you have them. Or you could go the route of stuffing them with towels. Really cramming them in there to get as much moisture as you can. And then wear them for the day, around the house. Put on some thick, wool socks if you have them, so your feet don't get damp and cold. Be sure to shake up the Lexol really well.
 

tmal

One of the Regulars
Messages
115
Location
NYS
Dry them slowly. I would use water to remove most if not all the mud. I would want them clean before using the Lexol cleaner. If there is still caked dried mud rubbing them with the cleaner you risk pushing the grit further into the leather, scratching/scraping the leather as you rub. The Lexol should be used as a final cleaning step to remove the last of the grit and then the conditioner to replace the oils you removed with the water. I use shoe trees in all my boots especially after getting them wet. It helps, using cedar trees, to dry the inside and stops the wet leather from curling up at the toe. Then a final coat of good shoe polish to restore the finish, the colour. The some edge dressing to restore the colour to the sole edge. Voila, boots like new.

that was what pretty much what I had planned. Thanks for the reassurance. The boots are fairly new and I didn't want to screw them up
 

Bfd70

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,233
Location
Chicago
All the above obviously good advice. Also, Checkout vintageengineerboots.com

he has a post about cleaning with barbersol shavingcream.

can anyone tell me more about edge dressing?
 

belfastboy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,139
Location
vancouver, canada
All the above obviously good advice. Also, Checkout vintageengineerboots.com

he has a post about cleaning with barbersol shavingcream.

can anyone tell me more about edge dressing?
I use Lincoln brand products and they make a Sole & Heel Edge Dressing. I think it is a liquid polish but with extra dye in the solution. I have both black & brown and use it to complete the polish of my shoes and boots. It works great. I also use it on scuffed areas where I need a deeper tint to remove the scuff.
 

M Brown

One of the Regulars
Messages
298
Location
N Tx
My answer to the OPs question comes in the form of a short story;

Many years ago I was visiting my uncle, a rancher who lived on the Blanco River in the Texas hill country SW of Austin. I wore some new boots, hoping a weekend in the country would help break them in.

When my uncle noticed my discomfort with the new boots he told me to go wade in the river until they were soaked, then wear them until they were dry...that afterward they'd be the best fitting boots I'd ever worn.

So I followed his advice and by the end of the day those boots felt like they were custom made. He was right.

Ever since then I've done the same with new boots, substituting a swimming pool for the river. And whenever my boots get mud covered I don't hesitate to take a water hose to them and blow the mud off, not worrying about getting the leather wet.
But I always wear them until they're dry. Then I give them a good coat of boot oil, mink oil, whatever I have on hand, and a coat of boot polish.

I have boots in my closet that are over 30 years old and still kicking. Yes, new soles or heel caps have been added over the years but none of them has ever suffered from a good soaking.
 

Bfd70

My Mail is Forwarded Here
Messages
3,233
Location
Chicago
Good story. Bet it works but do you think the quality of the boots might make a difference? Leather foot beds sure would be fine but maybe not synthetics.
 

tmal

One of the Regulars
Messages
115
Location
NYS
OK I did it. Hose off the mud as best I can. Let dry. Use sponge to wipe off remaining mud. This did not take too long as they were already quite clean. Let dry. Use Lexol, cleaner first, conditioner second. They look better than they have in a long time. Got to use the Lexol more often.
 

TLW '90

One of the Regulars
Messages
190
Sounds like you need to get yourself a peet boot dryer.
Every night I brush my boots off and leave them on the peet dryer till I put them on the next mourning.
They do not smell inside because the gentle drying process aerates them and drys out any sweat or moisture from the day.

I wear my thorogood 4364's pretty much everyday I'm not at work aside from the summer.
From working in the shop to repairing the fence or digging in the yard they get used but I take good care of them.

Here they are fresh this morning after having been cleaned with saddle soap last night, dried till mourning, the conditioned and polished.


I've had them since September of 2019, and they don't look more than a year old at best.
 
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