John, First I want to star of by saying your Vintage Engineer Boot page is wonderful and full a great info. I know you get asked a ton of questions about cost and which boot to buy. I spend hours looking at the post. So much good info. I decided to go with some custom Wesco Boss. At the moment they fit into my budget. One day some Role Clubs. I was hoping I can show you my boot build and see what you think? Thank you.
Thank you kindly for the e-mail. I find myself referencing information posted on here over the years quite often. If only I wasn't so busy, I'd archive more information.
Congrats on your custom Wesco build!! Please do send photos and build specifics. More often than not, my blog readers have used this information for their own builds.
Thanks again and talk with ya soon!
**These amazing Wesco boots - already perfectly broken in - were a gift from Michael as a gesture for the helpful information I provide on this blog as well as my service to the country. I'm not the type of person to let such an amazing deed go unrecognized, but to show what an upstanding dude he is, Michael didn't immediately accept my offer for a custom wallet. Of course the offer stands, indefinitely, and is not limited to a custom wallet.
Hey there! Since you seem to be the authority on this topic, i wanted to ask ya something. I got lucky and stumbled onto a pair or black road champs in my size, at the Mister Freedom store of all places! Got them about a month ago and have worn them every day. I've noticed that some black road champs out there, are more black than others. Mine are definitely a really dark brownish color when they are in daylight. I've heard that Christophe polishes his personal pair of black RC's with a black tinted polish to keep them black in color. If I wanted to enhance a black hue from them, what would you suggest? Is polishing them with black polish a good idea? I know some people like the different hues and textures, and I'm sure eventually, I'll let them wear how they may. But for now, id love to figure out how to get them to be jet black, if possible! Any ideas? Ive noticed your road champs look pretty black as well Thanks J
First off, congratulation on picking up a pair of highly coveted boots! I've recommended that folks visit the shop every so often as some rarities can be found at the brick and mortar not always advertised online.
Now back to your great question. Because the black (and brown) Road Champ Boots undergo an exclusive leather treatment and coloring process, each pair of boots possess their own unique color characteristics. My black pair are definitely on the blacker side of the black Road Champ spectrum.
Polishing them with a black polish of your choice is most certainly the best option to enhance the black hue. I personally use black Parade Gloss applied with a either a cotton cloth wrapped tight around my finger or Horsehair Polish Applicator and buffed with a Horsehair Shine Brush -- all made by Kiwi -- whenever I'm in the mood to freshen up my black leather footwear. Polish won't penetrate the leather all the way through giving the boots a chance to develop a nice brown patina later down the road with the option to reapply polish if desired -- leather dye is more of a permanent solution and may prove harder to develop a patina, if at all, depending on how deep the dye penetrates the vegetable tanned leather.
The above steps are simple and inexpensive and I think you'll be happy with the results.
Update: No longer for sale as I've decided to have Brian give 'em the ol' Role Club touch!
I picked up these amazing Horsehide White's Semi-Dress boots from my buddy, Michael, over a year ago and they're just a hair too big for me. My loss is someone else's gain.
They've been cleaned and conditioned with only the best (at least what I consider the best) leather product on the market -- Pecard Antique Leather Dressing. These boots are rugged and built to last. Here are the particulars:
Leather: Black Horsehide with leather lining
Condition: Excellent Used with MANY years left
Size: Marked 7 1/2D (go off measurements below to be sure)
Length (heel against wall to furthest point forward): 11 3/4"
Width (Widest part of sole at the ball): 4 11/16"
Circa: Post-WWII Rationing
Size: 8 1/2D
Soles/Heels: Leather/Cat's Paw
Leather: Oil-Tanned Cowhide
Sold for: Best offer from $999
Some real nice patina going on here with these Engineers. It's pretty clear that tall boots gain the attention of only a small niche market of collectors, but keep in mind that this was the standard height pre-WWII - War rationing caused the shortening of this type of footwear. This particular pair; however, appears to have been offered post-War Rationing (1946) based on the chunky buckles. Armed with this detail and knowledge of the Pre-1955 labels, I date these around the late 1940's.
I'd have been happy to reel these in for a best offer of about $350-$400