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Anticitizen

Giving Ww2 Corcoran Jump Boots A 'vintage' Look?

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Hello all! Newbie here, with a question!

Nothing overly involved or complicated here. I want to do something fairly basic, I think.

I want to make these boots:

jumpboot1.JPG

...look like this:

4K8HVrJ.jpg

6ZANewj.jpg

These are the same type of boot: a WW2-era paratrooper 'jump' boot. The company that makes the new boot is the same company that made the original (Corcoran) and they are identical.

I've read that I can get the 'creased' look by binding up the boots and soaking them in cold water for a day.

Any advice on the coloring? Should I be dyeing, or using oils or waxes to tan the leather? Tips would be appreciated.

Thanks!

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Wear them.

Wouldn't hurt to make a few parachute jumps in them too.

Should get that look after walking a few hundred miles in them.

You'd need to spit shine them too (the toe caps) but it would take me hours to explain the correct way to do that on here.

Edited by LTC

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When I was younger my father had a pair of boots that had developed that patina, it came from years of using cordovan polish on brown leather.

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THe first thing you will need to do is deglaze them (get rid of the top coat finish) Oil them a bit beat them with a hammer or just fold and flex the uppers a bunch to develop creases and wrinkles. Get some dark brown antique gel and apply wipe off you should now have some dark areas. As stated above apply cordovan shoe polish. SPit shine the toe. Get rid of the ugly shoe laces and get some leather ones. Then wear and let the elements and time do their thing. The above prceedures should cut the time down to about 30 years :)

Edited by camano ridge

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Wet the boots from the bottom of the laces down. Before totally dry, apply NF oil. When almost dry, apply a little darker polish. Dry with hairdryer. Water will open pores. Oil will make the leather darker. Polish, same. Hairdryer=dry. Do it again.

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Apply liquid polish in crease areas. This will accelerate the wrinkles. And wear them. And wear......

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Neatsfoot (or neat's foot) oil. Better to use the pure NF and not the NF oil compound.

Edited by gary

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If you don't have Neatsfoot oil Extra veirgin olive oil will work as well.

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Don't forget to deglaze- remove original finish. THe antique gel may not take otherwise. A good rubbing with a course cloth and denatured alcohol should work.

Edited by camano ridge

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There's reliable no shortcut to putting that polish on the tow and heel caps that I know of. It's something you end up doing on a regular basis because wearing them will leave scuffs that will need to be polished out. It's skill that takes a bit of time to learn. I agree with LTC above, it's not a short explanation and generally best learned by watching and doing rather than reading.

I cherished my Jumps and took great care not to screw them up when wearing them, but it always seemed inevitable that they'd need dressing up before the next inspection. They, ultimately, were passed on to the little brother of a friend who had just been accepted to jump school. I couldn't bring myself to wear them about without pant legs being cuffed and tucked in, and as civilian, now, that'd just be silly.

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Don't forget to deglaze- remove original finish. THe antique gel may not take otherwise. A good rubbing with a course cloth and denatured alcohol should work.

Thanks, will do.

I couldn't bring myself to wear them about without pant legs being cuffed and tucked in, and as civilian, now, that'd just be silly.

Not the look for me, I'm afraid! These will be worn with jeans.

These were the boots I looked at buying:

dPQ9Tux.jpg

...but they're $458, and more pointedly, made by Kenneth Cole (everything I've owned by K.C. has fallen apart in under a year). The jump boots are $160, can be re-soled by a cobbler, and can probably last the rest of my life (and the KC boots are probably inspired by the jump boot in the first place).

Edited by Anticitizen

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...but they're $458, and more pointedly, made by Kenneth Cole (everything I've owned by K.C. has fallen apart in under a year)....

You have to pay a premium for that "worn look" on a brand new item...

I remember when the grunge look was popular and the fashion industry will capitalize on anything trendy. The idea behind the grunge look was that it what was cheap, comfortable, and lended itself well to the unique weather experienced in the Pacific Northwest. Emphasis on cheap and comfortable, which translated to thrift store shopping and hand-me-downs. I recall advertisements for "Grunge Look" clothing that focused on the worn and torn clothing that had the "fresh from the mosh-pit" look, complete with fake blood and dirt stains aim directly at upper-class teens with a surplus of disposable cash. The irony of paying extra to look like a scrubby bum always amused me.

I'm not saying this is the case with what you are doing, I was merely musing about my personal experiences. I understand the desire to avoid the high price tags for that "pre-worn look". I'd also argue that the Jumps would certainly outlast the designer boots by a wide margin, so you are on the right track.

If you take care of your LPC's they'll take care of you... ;)

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I believe the original wwii paratrooper boot is made from cordovan. The modern reproduction Corcoran paratrooper boots is bovine. It will be hard to replicate that exactly those have been shined many times with Lincoln Polish. The original paratroopers would use a diaper, tooth brush and patience. They would not burn the wax like the modern fighting man does.

Your best bet would be Hubbards boot Oil. But first use a diluted light brown angelous shoe dye.

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Starting to look good. Definately better then the $480.00 Kevin Cole ones. Now just get some milage on them.

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xdwzd4d.jpg

ZJ4ubxd.jpg

A few more beauty shots!

One additional thing I did was cover the shoes completely with black polish. Then I used a rag and some rubbing alcohol to strategically remove the black finish in select areas to allow the cordovan to show through. Then I polished the entire boot with neutral (clearish) wax.

AkXRnEu.jpg

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By the way, I just wanted to add that I've been browsing through this forum and it seems like a great community. I was never into leatherworking in the past beyond a few Boy Scout merit badge projects, but I could use a good hobby. This feels like a fun way to bring out my under-developed 'artistic' side, and I think I'll be coming up with some projects soon. Thanks again to everyone for their helpful advice.

Edited by Anticitizen

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Anticitizen, Hi, I just wanted to say that you had inspired me to follow the directions on your blog (which I can't currently locate - if you could provide me a link, that would be great).  To follow suit and here are the results.  I can't tell you how happy I am with the results:

 

 

DSC07240 - Copy.JPG

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On 3/3/2014 at 6:52 PM, LTC said:

Wear them.

Wouldn't hurt to make a few parachute jumps in them too.

Should get that look after walking a few hundred miles in them.

You'd need to spit shine them too (the toe caps) but it would take me hours to explain the correct way to do that on here.

 

 No, never jump or fast rope in those, you'll break legs, hip or back.

I had Corcoran boots and was in 101st Airborne Division and we did not ever jump in those. They have no give to them. One guy in my battalion jumped in they and broke three vertebrae. Those are dress boots for inspections, dog and pony shows, and special events of parade and manual of arms or D and C. I jumped in jungle boots that I had taped, internally, duct tape ankle support.

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