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Red Wing vs. Chippewa Engineer Boots

Discussion in 'General Attire & Accoutrements' started by gtrplyr, Jun 28, 2016.

  1. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    8,013
    Location:
    Glasgow
    No, I got the straight ahead chrome with steel toes. I think you're right about the leather, though I may give them a tentative polish, just to see what happens. However, for the time being, I have a huuuuuge tin of mink oil to keep them looking good. I've been surprised how comfortable they were, tbh, not at all heavy or bulky. I'm currently wearing them around the house, just to break them in a bit and and get used to the slightly different fit, and they're pretty good already. That said, I'm anticipating that my first real trip out in them will end in blisters...
     
    Edward likes this.
  2. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    8,013
    Location:
    Glasgow
    It's worth adding that the leather is matte not greasy, something that surprised me, so it may well take a shine.
     
    Edward likes this.
  3. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    8,013
    Location:
    Glasgow
    Pics! Pics! Pics!
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    Bushman, Kane, SimonR and 1 other person like this.
  4. Edward

    Edward Bartender

    Messages:
    18,978
    Location:
    London, UK
    They look great. FWIW, Having worn boots with and without a steel toe, I've never noticed any temperature differences or additional weight with the steel as long as the fit is good. The only real negative I've ever found with a steel toecap is the toe scuffs a bit easier because there's less 'give', but otherwise...

    I should look into these.
     
  5. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    8,013
    Location:
    Glasgow
    Handy thing to know. I've seen a few examples of 2268s that have been brushed to a shine, so it may be possible to do a bit buffing if they catch a scuff.
     
  6. SimonR

    SimonR New in Town

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Chesterfield UK
    After reading your experience ... especially the dropping size I've given my 2990's another go

    Thanks !! I used the plastic bag method to get them on and had I got a larger size they would have been far too big - these are a 9.5 and once on have plenty of room

    Thanks for making me try again :)

    Off to end the for sale thread !
     
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  7. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    8,013
    Location:
    Glasgow
    Good to hear! Actually, I emailed Red Wing to ask them why they used the plastic lift on the 2268s (I'm that sort of guy), and they actually came back to me with a response!
    They said that this particular this part has been that way for nearly 30 years. The person who responded said that it's unclear exactly why plastic was chose, but that it was designed for a work boot and other materials had proven to be not very durable – especially in the heel area. The only other option is a leather stack and experience told them that the bonding of the leather stacks separate when exposed to water and wear. She added that plastic is not necessarily the cheapest option, but it is by far the most durable.
    So now you know! I'm very impressed that they came back to me, as I was pretty sure my question would be ignored as some smart ass trying to get a rise out of them (it wasn't, btw I was genuinely interested).
     
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  8. Bfd70

    Bfd70 Practically Family

    Messages:
    773
    Location:
    Chicago
    Sloan can you show an image about what you’re reffering to?
     
  9. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    8,013
    Location:
    Glasgow
    Here you go. It looks wooden but it's very much textured plastic.
    [​IMG]
     
  10. Bfd70

    Bfd70 Practically Family

    Messages:
    773
    Location:
    Chicago
    Huh? No foolin. I thought it WAS wood. I wondered why they didn’t finish it nicer. I guess thats onebof the differences between $400 and $800 boots.
     
  11. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    8,013
    Location:
    Glasgow
    It’s not really noticeable when you’re wearing them, but I suspect you’re right. That aside, overall, they are a good quality boot, on a par with any other Red Wing product. I guess the decision was made back in the 80s, or there about, when people were not quite as obsessive about this sort of detail.
     
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2019 at 11:40 AM
    Edward likes this.
  12. Woodtroll

    Woodtroll A-List Customer

    Messages:
    498
    Location:
    Mtns. of SW Virginia
    That is true - the leather and wooden heel stacks rot out on work boots, and the nails rust out, and then you're walking down a grade or on a pitched roof and your heel decides to let go... you can picture what happens next. I have worn logger boots since my early teens, and sometimes the soles wear out before the heels rot out, sometimes not. Vibram actually makes a sole that is molded all in one piece, heel included, so this doesn't happen. But they're not what you're looking for on this type of boot, and I don't particularly like the lug pattern.

    A plastic block does seem cheap, but it is more durable for a boot that will be in the wet, snow, and mud.
     
  13. Edward

    Edward Bartender

    Messages:
    18,978
    Location:
    London, UK
    Personally, I'm all for this sort of 'hidden upgrade' where it gives the right look but with improved performance. In truth, I'd have been initially a bit disappointed to have a plastic bit in the heel until I saw the Red Wing explanation, which goes to show they've really thought this through rather than just churned 'em out. Impressed thry took the trouble to answer, too.
     
    Sloan1874 likes this.
  14. Ernest P Shackleton

    Ernest P Shackleton Practically Family

    Messages:
    712
    Location:
    Midwest
    That's what I think. I'm not saying plastic doesn't work just fine, but I'm also not saying it isn't a penny shaver. I'd buy their pitch, but the likes of Westco, Nick's, White, Viberg, etc have been using thick leather stacks, for the most demanding conditions, for how long? Same for nails and screws. Can leather and glue or a nail fail? Sure, but if they did on any kind of consistent level, these companies would have been out of business long before the fashionistas found them, and they wouldn't have been able to ask premium prices all along either.

    All that aside, I would imagine the comfort of a leather stack vs a plastic stack would be noticeable. Unless the plastic has a rubber element to it.
     
  15. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    8,013
    Location:
    Glasgow
    Just worn them out for the first time this evening - I’ve been holding off wearing them for any long outings as I fear the agony of developing blisters and then dragging my self home, bots sloshing with blood. So far, so good. A bit of heel lift at the moment, to be expected from what I’ve read, but no discomfort yet. Watch this space...
     
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  16. Vintagestyle

    Vintagestyle Familiar Face

    Messages:
    64
    As far as i know boots heels are not made of wood but with thick leather and rubber !
    Also , the nails should not rust or rot cause they are made of brass and it does not rust !
    The plastic part in the Red Wing boots appear to me as a cut n the cost and also less time consuming to build cause they glue it wheareas others nail it.
    i think Chippewa use nailed hard leather and rubber as does Wesco and others high end brands .
    The Red Wing plastic heel ,especialy of that color and not black, is exactly what i do not like in these boots !
    Also , the way they do not polish correctly the top of the heel which sticks out of many of their boots as we can see on these pictures .
    Apart from that , they are good boots ,more or less as good as Chippewa but i prefer Chippewa leather and overall look .
    Also the differerence seems to be that the RW are tighter in the instep, what can be a good or bad thing depending on the width and thickness of your foot .
     
    Last edited: Jan 15, 2019 at 8:19 PM
  17. SimonR

    SimonR New in Town

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Chesterfield UK
    Mine too are the one piece heel ....... I am looking at possibly Whites as a next purchase for the reason that the heel and the half sole can be replaced easily but need to check sizing.

    Breaking in is going well but still have to use the plastic pags to get them on !! once on though very comfy

    IMG_4046.JPG
     
  18. Vintagestyle

    Vintagestyle Familiar Face

    Messages:
    64
    Isn't the one piece heel the smaller heels ones ,2990 or something like that ?
    Witout steel toe ?
    Personnaly i prefer the taller heels and steel toe ( for a rounder toe ) not because i am small but because i prefer the look .
    By the way , i bought some from the store in Germany and the pair i received has one boot much tighter than the other on the instep ,whereas i had tried two other pairs that didn't have that problem.
    So i told them and thought they would tell me to send them back for replacement but they said i should not pay attention to that and that they will get wider with break in !
    That they might loosen a bit with break in is possible but it is not just a bit tight ,it is painfull ( the other boot doesn't have that problem ) whereas i have really thin feet , so it is a problem on the boot and not that that type of boot is not adapted to my feet as they told me !
    Anyway , i will send it back but i fear they just refund the money and do not bother sending another pair instead .
    I could have bought some Chippewa if they were not discontinued but RW is my last option !
    i hope they will send another but it seems RW has a very small production ( much smaller than Chippewa did ) for these boots and they have very little stock from what they told me.
     
  19. Woodtroll

    Woodtroll A-List Customer

    Messages:
    498
    Location:
    Mtns. of SW Virginia
    Many boot heels are made of stacked leather, but some have been, maybe still are, made of wood. And I assure you that many boot makers still use steel or iron clinch nails, not brass. The nails are designed to curl or clinch against a steel plate in the heel of the last, effectively bending the ends over inside the boot to "clinch" everything together. I do some minor repairs on my own gear when I can, and do use brass brads and nails for my repairs, but the heel nails I've seen from White's, Drew's, Nick's, and Wesco over the last 35 years or so have almost always been steel/iron, at least for the logger/firefighter boots that I wear. It's very possible that other manufacturers use brass, or that these manufacturers use brass in other boot models. I can only speak as to the boots I wear and work on.
     
  20. SimonR

    SimonR New in Town

    Messages:
    15
    Location:
    Chesterfield UK
    I asked Red Wing directly and got the following reply

     

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