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Sole cracking on new work or safety shoes?

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  • #699366
    Miamicuse
    Pro
    Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    Just wondering if anyone here have experienced soles on their work shoes cracking into pieces when relatively new (I mean a few days to a week)?

    Being in Florida I don’t wear much boots I prefer casual work shoes such as Wolverine, Timberland, Doc Martens or Dickies.

    Recently I have had a few pairs – three pairs in a row that lasted less than one week. There has been no abuse, not even getting too wet, just the sole cracking and literally disintegrating in the middle of walking from point A to point B.

    Typically, I do not buy my shoes at the stores, I ordered them online. I find a few I like and I buy them repeatedly. I have some that lasted over a year, but the same exact shoes, now less than a week.

    The only thing I can think of, is that I ordered new shoes ahead of time. For example, once I toss a pair out, I order a new pair, that new pair of shoes may then sit in my closet for a year or two before I take it out to use it. By then it’s not longer returnable to the merchant or manufacturer.

    After looking it up on the internet it appears I am not the only one but many others are having this problem with polyurethane or rubber soles and they will disintegrate if they are not worn all the time. If you put it away and store them and put them on again six months later, you should not be surprised they will fall apart very quickly. They call it HYDROLYSIS, and it seems to be more severe in warm and humid weather places.

    Anyone running into this?

    #699446
    DirtyWhiteBoy
    Pro
    Honolulu,, Hi.

    Anyone running into this?

    Yes I have had this happen. I have come to accept that work boots just don’t store well. They do not get better with age.

    #699473
    Doobie
    Moderator

    I had it happen also. Had a brand new pair of expensive runners on clearance that were too small for me I kept for my son to grow into. Five years later, the soles both cracked on him the first day he used them.

    I guess some manufacturers in shoes do the ‘planned obsolescence’ thing just like other product manufacturers. This of course is all Walmart’s doing they pioneered decades ago. Basically cheap overpriced junk designed to prematurely die on us.

    Walmart makes Darth Vader look like a girlie-man when it comes to its modus of operandi and also how it treats its army of servants which many retailers and manufacturers had to bow to over the years in how they conduct business just to compete. Hate Walmart…..just hate them! 😠

    #699551
    Miamicuse
    Pro
    Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    The problem is even the expensive work shoes have this problem.

    I guess the only solution is to not buy any foot wear ahead of time?

    #702824
    Doobie
    Moderator

    The problem is even the expensive work shoes have this problem.

    Curious, and for the benefit of others, including myself, what brands have you experienced this with Sami?

    #702870
    Miamicuse
    Pro
    Fort Lauderdale, Florida

    Pretty much all brands.

    Doc Martens, Timberland, Dickies, Catepillar, Wolverine, there are more but basically they all fall apart SUDDENLY after a prolonged period of storage.

    This appears to be a very common problem if the manufacturer uses polyurethane (PU) in their soles or as a layer for cushioning in the sole. This pretty much covers all work shoes and sneakers.

    https://www.safetyjogger.com/en/academy/hydrolysis-crumbling-shoe-soles-explained

    It is not a problem if you go buy a new pair and put it on and wear it till it breaks in a year. It is a problem if you go buy a new pair ahead of time, store it then try to use it a year LATER when your old one is worn out, or if you buy a new pair, wear it for 2 months and puts it away for six months and takes it out again (like hunters do), then you most likely will experience this.

    The cause is the PU being in storage. The shoes do not fall apart when you take it out of the box, it does it while you are walking.

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