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Thread: Can you recommend some work shoes

  1. #1

    Can you recommend some work shoes

    I am interested in getting some purpose built work shoes. These would not be for "work", but for work in the shop, around the house, in the yard, etc. I have always just re-purposed old shoes I don't mind getting dirty, but I am starting to wonder if this is partly the cause of pain in my back and feet after a whole weekend wearing them. So I am looking for something that is short (not a boot), breathable (not waterproof or especially insulated), does not have a safety toe, and will last a long time (I am hard on shoes). I am looking to spend somewhere in the $200 range and would like something I can have re-soled in a few years. Thoughts?

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Aug 2010
    Get a pair of Skechers

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Sep 2013
    Wayland, MA
    Visit your local Redwing store. Great boots/shoes in a wide range of styles and fits. They last a long time and can be repaired. Some are even made in the USA if that matters to you. Then buy some good anti-fatigue replacement insoles (These work well for me) The insoles that come with most boots aren't very good.

    If you have shoes you like you might just try the new insoles in them first.

  4. #4
    You have to be selective even with Redwing these days....some of their newer designs do not have replaceable soles, and you see a lot more reviews complaining about shorter than expected life. But at least they offer quite a few styles that can be resoled; many shoe/boot brands have moved completely away from them. I don't mind paying a couple hundred for good boots if they last a few years, but that seems to be the exception these days (like with so many other products). There, do I sound enough like a grumpy old man?

    I found a pair of the Redwing brand Irish Setter boots I really liked at Hartville Hardware, but they didn't have them in my size. They had sewn on, replaceable soles. Went online to try to find my size, to find reviewers complaining that that model boot had been changed to molded on soles that were wearing out after a year.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    SE PA - Central Bucks County
    I use Sketcher's GO-Walk series athletic shoes that have a thin layer of memory foam in them with "custom" support inserts from Dr. Scholl's for shop and "work around the house" use. The inserts are selected by standing on a machine at the retail store while it measures pressure points from your weight, stature, etc., relative to the bottom of your feet. The inserts have totally cured leg, knee, hip and back issues from standing long-term for me and the cost is reasonable when I wear out the bottoms and need to replace them. This has worked for me for a couple of years now and for me, I can't justify buying really expensive shoes and re-soling these days isn't inexpensive, either...if you can find a cobbler that's able and willing to do it.

    The most expensive tool is the one you buy "cheaply" and often...

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Apr 2012
    Austin, TX
    I've used everything from combat boots to trail-running sneakers to muckers. For me, the magic is in the insole. Sole or Superfeet brand, to be specific. I have high arches and while my feet seem to tolerate a wide range of shoes, if the insole is flat, I have issues. Just what works for me.

    Felder USA Territory Representative: Central & South Texas

  7. #7
    Looking at the red wing shoes. Also looking at timberland pro. Skechers are not going to cut it for me. I have had some in the past and they fall apart in a few months. I am hard on shoes so I'm willing to invest in some. There is an excellent cobbler close to me and I think he would resole anything that could be resoled.

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Waterford, PA
    My husband, a commercial roofer, is very, very hard on shoes. He has the best comfort and durability from Keen work shoes and work boots. He uses shoes in the warmer months and boots for the cold months.

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jun 2016
    Blog Entries
    Merrill, oboz, or keen.

  10. #10
    I love Oboz. Those are my general walking shoes. I have had mixed results with Keen. I hate Merrels. They just do not last.

    Might try the Keen work shoes.

  11. #11
    For ten years or more I used to wear Merrel hiking boots and loved the way they fit. But then they changed them and like Günter's experience, they started wearing out after a year of light use. Often the waterproofing would fail within months.

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Kansas City
    Agreeing with Erik on the Sole brand insoles. Made a huge difference and ended my plantar fasciitis. They seem to be hard to find, however.

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Ames, IA
    I'm not sure they have the style you're interested in, but take a look at SAS. American made; have insoles.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Medina Ohio
    I have been wearing Redwing work boots for the last 30 years and they hold up good and I am rough on shoes. I had Wolverine that only lasted 1 year but I can get 3 years out of a pair of Redwings

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Longview WA
    Blog Entries
    Back in my days of wearing safety boots Redwing was the brand of convenience for me since a store was fairly close. Some of the designs were comfortable, some were not. They do not get more comfortable over time.

    An friend of mine worked in an ER and said most of the folks in the medical field preferred Chippewa brand shoes. This was about 15 years ago so things may have changed.

    If you know anyone in the nursing or medical field they may have an opinion of value.

    "A pessimist sees the difficulty in every opportunity; an optimist sees the opportunity in every difficulty."
    - Sir Winston Churchill (1874-1965)

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