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Old 01-29-2013, 06:20 PM   #38 (permalink)
Bulldog
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Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Columbus, Ohio

Re-posted from my team forum...

After about 5 years of abuse, my old Wellco jungle boots are pretty huffed. I was looking for a similar replacement, but maybe a little lighter, with a more flexible sole. At first I was only looking at Wellcos, as I wanted something made in the US, but then I saw a thread on MCB about the new Belleville/actical Research Mini-Mil boots with Vibram low-rise, barefoot-stile soles. After checking them out further I ordered a pair.

They are super comfortable and should give me the barefoot feeling I like for running, but with ankle support. The only problem is that they only come in black or desert tan. Black is too dark, and tan is too light, so I got them in tan and picked up a bottle of chocolate brown RIT dye...

Before:


Pre-soaking and test-fitting in the pot:


Bringing the water, dye, and vinegar mix to a boil:


Soak it in!


Dumped in the sink and rinsed off...


...even stainless steel can be dyed - had to bust out a scotch-brite pad and some Barkeeper's Friend before the wife got home.


Set out in the sun to dry. The nylon webbing and painted hardware didn't take much dye at all, and the rubber soles turned kinda burgundy-brown. I probably should have cleaned the soles and other stuff with some kind of degreaser before coloring them, but I'm still happy with the results. I'll probably bucket-wash them with laundry detergent and dry them again before wearing to make sure I don't dye my feet the first few times I wear them.

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