Monday, February 3, 2014

Insoles, Part 1

While I'm waiting for some other supplies, as well as for inspiration to strike for that second pair of shoes, I'm getting started on the insoles.  So - first order of business is to cut the insole pattern from celtec  - sort of a foam board stuff.  It's directional, and bends more in one direction than the other, so it's important to line up the long axis of the insole with the arrows on the back of the material.
Also, two lines are drawn across the insole pattern at the ball of the foot, and the spot where the shoe first contacts the ground (a spot that's easier to determine and more crucial on a higher heel).  The line where the shoe hits the road is the pattern line for the shank board - the dark green stuff.  
Shank board is really hard to cut - at shoe school, we used a 5 in 1 cutter, but those run about $1,900 used, and I'm not really in the market for that expensive of equipment.  So, I used a jig saw to cut the shank board, which I'm not very good at, and then made up for my crappy saw usage with the bench sander.  I love my new bench sander.  

The bench sander is also very useful for skiving the edges of the shank board.  It's important to get a nice feather edge on these, because otherwise, it would make a lump across the inside of the shoe where your foot would feel it.

Next step is to soak the shank board for at least an hour, or up to a week or two, to get it really saturated.  I dumped them in some water, and watched The Bourne Ultimatum. 
Once they're well-soaked, stick them on the bottoms of the lasts, wrap them in elastic, and let them dry.  Again, if these lasts weren't flats, it would be more dramatic - the shank board molds to the shape of the bottom of the last while it dries.