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Old 02-11-2013, 06:35 PM
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Default Modified boot for wading

So I hate to add this to the wading boot thread being nearly all threads that I post in seem to come to a sudden halt once I have posted. Seriously, have no idea why but I have noticed it’s a trend.

Anyways I am wondering if anyone has ever modified a hiking boot to become a wading boot?

I have thought about it for a while now but have never done it.
Once I started using vibram I see little difference between some of my hiking boots and wading boots.

I figure weight would be the biggest issue?

I have some extra Vasque sundowner summits and have thought that if I tore out the lining and put some drain holes in them they would be very comparable to wading boots.

I’m not looking for fashionable but rather durability, support and longevity.

I currently use the Simms freestone boot, it seems to be one if not the best boots I have ever used.
Still it only last me a year or so.

I know the best way to figure things out is to do it yourself but I hate to ruin a good pair of boots if someone already knows better.

Has anyone ever done this?
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Watson
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Old 02-11-2013, 07:39 PM
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Default Re: Modified boot for wading

I've done similar but just for wet wading with sneakers. Just cut some drain panels and stay out of sandy gavel and silt. If you want to get fancy you could run a nice bead of aqua-seal around the edges where you cut. Pop some studs in if need be.
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Old 02-11-2013, 08:12 PM
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Default Re: Modified boot for wading

My first pair of wading shoes were some over size Chuck Taylor type sneakers with astro turf glued to the soles. Luckily, I didn't have to use them for long.
I have a pair of Red Ball Pac boots that were my son's. They were pretty worn out and leaky. I cut the tops down and wear them when I duck hunt in the really muddy silty stuff. The nub soles are better than the studded felts on my regular shoes.
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Old 02-14-2013, 10:14 PM
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Default Re: Modified boot for wading

The first time I went wading I took an old pair of work boots, glued some carpet to the bottom, and put hex head sheet metal screws in the soles. They were really heavy, and by the end of the day the glue wore out and the carpet was coming off. They got me through the day, but barely. They worked well for a while in terms of traction, but I noticed I tripped over the bigger rocks. That was my own fault.
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Old 02-14-2013, 11:00 PM
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Default Re: Modified boot for wading

Well the obvious first problem with using old hiking boots is that they bare your normal shoe size and will not fit over the neoprene bootie on your waders. Otherwise, for wet wading, I say go for it! I've been looking for a good wet wading/hiking boot for years...or just a good lite hiking boot - and a cheap, as wearing them in water for long periods will definitely degrade it in a season - for years.

If I were going to modify a full leather boot like a sundowner I would probably drill some holes for drainage, if you cut panels it opens too much room for gravel and sand and silt. The point is to make a great hiking shoe on the trail into a suitable river boot, and gravel between your foot and bottom of your shoe is unacceptable.

Try it and let us know.
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