Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Shoe Making: Men's Practise Derby V3

So for this version I got a pair of 12E lasts on Ebay.

This last was unusual in that the cone area was very wide up top, the the 1st change I made was just along the top inside. This is actually V3a, V3b is in the works and will be chronicled next.

I focused on what I'll call the "Darby line," the line that starts at the bottom of the facing and trails off to the heel. It is the most significant line on the derby and can be handled a 1000nd ways.

I am currently after three aspects of the line; a horizontal take-off from the joint area, a narrow gap to the "under ankle point," and a finish that is not vertical. Even with all these rules the options are many.

This is the "show side" set of patterns.

It may be obvious but I have learned it the hard way; stitch the sides 1st and then the heel. I am letting the heel joints lay on top of each other to expedite the process but also cannot feel the difference while wearing them.
Developing your own way of derby lining overlap is essential, its all about accurate alignment of parts.
The corner is also fun to express something on.
I am extremely happy with the outcome. I also got the toe puff and counter in as well as can be.

The 12E is way too big for me and so I went for substantial changes to get the fit right.

Next is labelled: 12E M2 V3b
With substantial adjustments to the lasts I have made the next trial piece.
I use techniques developed in the auto and aircraft industries to scribe accurate leines at predetermined intervals, this allows the transfer of shapes from one to the other. I took out the unusual cone shape and narrowed the joint area again.

Got another good drape form but that "too short" side on the toe would come back to haunt me.
I have been trying different lining seam lines and this one is too far forward; I think it needs to be one to two inches rearward of the joint point.
I prepped my insole using my own handmade channel knife. The channel knife works well and I see why folks like them. I think it is worth the effort to eliminate the inherent "over cutting" that occurs with the knife method.
Lining and outer after stitching.
So I tried the notch at a downward angle on the previous version and on this one I tried it parallel to the feather edge, not that either. The notch needs to be parallel to the facing top edge.
Stitching the lining together on any of my machines is not possible and certainly not fun so I just hand stitched it.
I found this crazy stuff; a fibrous (non-woven) material that is a little stiff, very light, and softens when wet. To my surprise it skives beautifully. I used my Gorilla glue technique to great success with this material.
Good results combining the air nailer and the air stapler.
At this point I am leaving the 12E modification experiment and going on to try my latest vintage 1958 11B lasts from EBay.