Tuesday, April 28, 2015

How to Clean the Inside of Rubber Boots

How to Clean the Inside of Rubber Boots

Got a pair of stinky rubber boots? Spiff them up with non-corrosive cleaning materials and a little elbow grease. You may have to wash, rinse and scrub your rubber boots several times to rid them of dirt, scuffs and smells. The best benefit of rubber boots, however, is that they dry quickly: The water just rolls off the surface.



    Pour into a plastic bucket equal parts water and white vinegar. Three cups each is a good start. Then, pour the liquid into each of the boots


    Scrub the inside of the boots with a soft cloth or a sponge. Cleaning with vinegar will neutralize smells. It also will remove salt, according to Good Housekeeping, because vinegar is a natural solvent.


    Pour the vinegar and water mixture out and shake the boots thoroughly. Fill the boots with water and scrub them out with a soft cloth or sponge. Allow to dry.


    Mix a 1/2 cup of water and a little kitchen scouring power in a small bowl. You want your mixture to have the consistency of a paste.


    Dip a soft cloth or sponge into the mixture and apply to scuff marks inside or around the outside of the rubber boots. Scrub until the scuff marks are gone.


    Wipe clean with a clean, damp cloth.

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Friday, April 24, 2015

How Are Rubber Boots Made?

The Sole of the Boot

    The production of a rubber boot begins with creation of the sole or base. Because the sole receives the most impact and wear of the boot, it needs to be made of a special rubber. First, the rubber is created using a type of rubber fiber that comes in blocks. The blocks are placed into a rolling machine and compressed into thin sheets. Next, a series of chemicals are combined into a tray and weighed. If the mixture is not exact, the rubber will not be the correct strength and will wear too quickly. The mixture is then added to the compressed fiber sheets and run through another roller press. After the mix is combined with the sheet, a chemical reaction forces the fibers to become stronger and solidify into a solid rubber. Next, the rubber is pressed into sheets and cut into individual sections for the soles. The sheets are placed into a mold and compressed in an oven. The ending result is the base sole of the shoe.

Leg Section of the Boot

    To create the leg section of the boot, a thick rubber sheet is cut into the shape of the boot using a pattern. Once the section is cut, the rubber is run through a stitching machine to seal the rubber. To create a seamless seal, the rubber is turned inside out so that the seam does not show. Next, a craftsman begins to build the shell of the boot. First, an additional layer of rubber (similar to vinyl) is wrapped and pressed around the boot. This layer is used to seal the rubber and protect it. Once the seal is attached, a support layer is added around the base of the boot up to the ankle. This ensures that rubber does not fold while in use. In addition, a strip of rubber is run from the top of the boot to the base to create a solid back. Another series of bands are added to the top of the boot to secure the opening (mouth). Afterward, a tool is run around the various sections of the boot to ensure that all air pockets are removed and the seals are solid. Once this process is complete, the leg sections are placed into a large oven to heat the rubber shell.

Final Construction

    Once the boots are removed from the oven, the soles are attached using a strong adhesive. The boots are placed into another oven for a short period of time to cook the glue into place. After the glue is solid, the boots are removed from the assembly line to be packaged and shipped out to retail stores.

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Thursday, April 23, 2015

How to Make a Shoe Stretcher

If you have a pair of shoes that just does not quite fit but they are simply too cute to give up on, then you might need a shoe stretcher. These devices also come in handy if you have one foot that is slightly bigger than the other, but not enough to warrant going up a size for the second shoe. You can make a shoe stretcher quickly and easily using things that you probably have in your own kitchen.



    Decide what part of the shoe needs to be stretched to fit correctly. Usually, you will not want to expand every part of the shoe. Determine if you need more space in the front of the shoe, if it is slightly too narrow or if you need more space all over.


    Fill the zippered bag with water and seal it. Do not fill it completely to the point of bulging, but so that it is still flexible. However, make sure there is little to no air in with the water.


    Secure the bag in the part of the shoe that needs to be stretched. If you need more room in the toe, then cram the filled bag it in as far as possible so the water conforms to the shape of the toe of the shoe. If the arch area needs to be wider, then place the plastic bags in the toe, then position the water-filled bag in the middle area so that it fits snugly. You might need to tape it into place. If you just need more room in general, then use a large enough bag that the water bag fills the entire shoe.


    Tape the bag into place. Use the masking tape so that you do not damage the finish on your shoe. Any exposed areas of the bag must be taped down so that when the water freezes, it cannot simply expand out of the shoe.


    Freeze the shoe and the shoe stretcher apparatus. As the water freezes, it will expand and the shoe will be forced to expand with it. You should leave the shoe in the freezer for several days, and you might have to repeat the process two or three times to get the degree of stretching you need.

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Saturday, April 18, 2015

About Eskimo Style Boots

About Eskimo Style Boots

Fleece-lined Eskimo boots are nothing new. They've been around in one form or another for nearly a hundred years. But it wasn't until the early 2000s that the fleece-lined tanned-on-the-outside footwear went from practical to posh. Then celebrities like Oprah, Cameron Diaz and Sandra Bullock began sporting the popular UGG brand of the footwear. The rest is consumer history, so to speak. UGGs and a host of knockoff brands swept college campuses and catwalks alike.


    "Eskimo-style boots" refers to any type of boot that is lined with some sort of fur, real or synthetic, and has an outer lining composed of either real or mock tanned animal skin. UGG boots are a specific brand that has popularized the Eskimo-style boot and is one of the most common types sold. UGGs are little different from other brands aside from the logo and the price.


    Eskimo-style boots are lined with sheepskin, though some brands may use synthetic material. Soles are often made of rubber. The outside is either tanned hide or made to look similar to tanned hide, though with the ubiquity and popularity of the boot, this is not a prerequisite. Off-shoots of the traditional Eskimo-style boot can sport anything from authentic animal hide outers to synthetic linings. Eskimo-style boots come in a plethora of colors ranging from the muted to the obnoxious.


    Eskimo-style boots date back at least to the times of World War I, when they were worn by airmen to keep their feet toasty at high altitudes. They may have been used before that in a precursory form by trappers who wrapped fur around their feet. More recently, surfers have employed the boots to warm their feet after coming out of the water. Today, the boots have lost most of their practical appeal and are instead seen as desirable items by the fashion conscious.


    Eskimo-style boots, which have traditionally been called "uggs" long before the name was appropriated as a global brand, have been historically viewed quite differently from how they are seen today. Previously, the boots were seen as unfashionable but practical, worn only by those with a need for them. Until a few years ago in their native Australia, the boots were seen as a fashion no-no and worn in the privacy of the home. Only when they received celebrity endorsement, in tandem with the coining of UGG as a corporate brand, did they become a popular fashion accessory.


    Today, Eskimo-style boots have lost much of their practical function. Originally employed for generations to warm feet numbed by the cold, whether by airmen thousands of feet in the air, trappers caught out in snowstorms or surfers emerging from freezing water, they are currently worn irrespective of weather. This is painfully evident in the fashion trend whereby college-aged women wear them with miniskirts. As a fashion accessory, Eskimo-style boots are typically enjoyed by women.

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Friday, April 17, 2015

How to Stretch Vinyl Shoes

How to Stretch Vinyl Shoes

Vinyl shoes are attractive, versatile and very popular this year. However, the rigid material doesn't breathe well and is difficult to stretch if the wrong size is purchased or the shoe is strangely uncomfortable. Here's what to do if the shoes are too tight:



    Purchase a shoe stretcher. These are generally included with shoe stretching spray (which won't help you, as most are made for leather shoes).


    With your home heater or hair dryer, safely heat the vinyl before you stretch the shoe. The heated vinyl will be far more malleable.


    Use the shoe stretcher while the shoe is still hot.


    If the shoe stretcher is difficult to handle or you simply can't find one, switch the shoes and wear them around the house. Put heavy wool or cotton socks on before you do this. The increased size will help stretch the shoes and will protect your skin from the heated vinyl.


    Have patience. Walk around the house and be sure to reheat the shoes every 15 minutes or so. Spend a couple days on your project. Vinyl shoes are not easy to stretch and will retake their original shape if not properly and thoroughly stretched.

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