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Thread: Leather Boots

  1. #11
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    I love AE boots! I have multiple pairs of Higgins Mill, Dalton, First Ave, Portland, Dundee 2.0 and Liverpool and would recommend them all.

  2. #12
    Varsity Member armedferret's Avatar
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    I know it wasn't mentioned in the OP, and it's a bit higher price bracket than the other listed choices, but Truman makes some really impressive stuff. A wide variety of available sizing (not AE wide, but significantly more options than red wing/wolverine/chippewa/alden), some incredible leathers, and all handmade by a really small shop in Boulder CO. I have a pair and absolutely LOVE them.

  3. #13
    Varsity Member Snake Doctor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by armedferret View Post
    I know it wasn't mentioned in the OP, and it's a bit higher price bracket than the other listed choices, but Truman makes some really impressive stuff. A wide variety of available sizing (not AE wide, but significantly more options than red wing/wolverine/chippewa/alden), some incredible leathers, and all handmade by a really small shop in Boulder CO. I have a pair and absolutely LOVE them.
    This is obviously in an entirely different price bracket from the others, but I've got two pairs of Trumans now and they're on another level. If you're looking to spend that kind of money, they're awesome, especially now that they're in stock instead of MTO. Fantastic shoes (other than my first pair giving me a horrendous blister after two attempts to break them in on what I thought were going to be fairly innocuous light hikes), but as long as you're looking at them you might as well throw Alden into the mix.

    As far as the brands the OP mentioned, as others have pointed out, Red Wing is much more work boot than Wolverine 1000 Miles with the chromexcel leather and leather soles on most of them. I've got three pairs of Red Wings (Iron Ranger, Blacksmith, moc toes), and would never hesitate to throw absolutely anything at them, but I've never felt my 1000 Mile Addisons were nearly as durable. I don't think I'd ever buy another pair of 1000 Miles again but would absolutely recommend Red Wing. As far as Chippewa goes, they're fantastic for the price point but I ended up selling the couple pairs I've owned because I didn't find them as nice as Red Wings. The Chippewa Service Boots in Tan Renegade were beautiful boots, though. Sleeker than Red Wings for sure.

    If you want to consider the hiker look, Danner Mountain Pass boots are great. They're a slimmed down version of the classic Mountain Light backpacking boots, with a lower profile upper and Vibram sole, and are available in some beautiful leathers with or without Gore-Tex. The Horween Rio Latigo leather on my pair is fantastic.

    TL;DR: Red Wing is probably a good place to start.

  4. #14
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    +1 for Chippewa service boot. Very reasonably priced for made in usa footwear. Good value.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Mr. Charles View Post
    I have a pair of Wolverine 1000, two pairs of Red Wing Iron Rangers, and an AE Caen (clunker than their Higgins Mill). All of them are fine boots. The Wolverines and AEs were comfortable right out of the box, and have been ever since. I have worn through the footbed lining in one spot on the Wolverines. The Red Wings feel the heaviest and best built of them all. I have one pair in Amber Harness, and one pair in Oxblood. The Oxblood were pretty comfortable out of the box, but the Amber Harness pair took about 12 somewhat unpleasant wears to break in.

    I would recommend all 3 brands. I think your choice needs to be based on how you want to use them. If you are looking for a serious boot that looks nice but can also do work, I suggest Red Wing. If you are looking for something that will look good, and that is your primary reason for buying, go with AE or Wolverine 1000 Mile. (Side note, the Wolverines can probably take a beating too, I just can't bring myself to give them the chance because I don't want to mess up the Chromexcel or leather sole.)

    Edit: Additional note on sizing. I'm usually a size 12. In the AEs, 12 is a good fit. With the Wolverines and Red Wings I had to size down a half to 11.5. The Red Wings also tend to run a little narrow, so keep that in mind if you have wide feet.
    +1 for the note on Red Wing sizing. I wear a 10E in my AE Strands and with all of the Red Wing boots I have tried on (Iron Ranger, Beckman, Blacksmith, etc), a 10 is too narrow and a 10.5 is too big and my heel slips not matter how tightly I tie them. For the $ I have to spend, it just isn't worth it for me to get an ill fitting pair of boots. I purchased a pair of Chippewa's earlier this year when they were on sizeable clearance and have been very happy with them.

  6. #16
    Varsity Member Vic's Avatar
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    I don't know how much this matters to you, but Allen Edmonds and Red Wing Shoes both offer in-house resoling/recrafting. This is something I'm very aware of right now as one of my Wolverine 1000-mile boots is due for a new outer sole.

    -Vic
    "The first principle is that you must not fool yourself, and you are the easiest person to fool." - Richard Feynman
    "Consistency is the refuge of fools." - Hyman G. Rickover

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