View Full Version : Boots that DON'T wear out after a year?

Mar. 21, 2011, 04:18 PM
Hi all - typing fast at work, will answer any questions this evening when home, but basic question is are there any boots out there that won't wear out after near daily use for a year?

I wear my tall boots year round and polish for shows. I hate paddock boots and half chaps.

I've been purchasing the $150ish Ovations once yearly for three years. They wear out near the end of each year and I set off again for another pair. (Blow out near the toes and the leather wears on the inner calf.)

While I hate breaking in new boots yearly, I don't want to buy customs if they're going to last three years and then not break even. Never had customs though, so not sure on longevity.


Mar. 21, 2011, 04:34 PM
I have a consignment shop in NY. I have pairs of Vogels and Dehners over twenty years old. Ariat, Ovation, and no name boots over a year old. All of the boots are in my shop because the original and latter owners took great CARE of their boots.
Whatever you purchase treat them with care.

Mar. 21, 2011, 05:06 PM
My Ariat boots are more than a year old & still look fine. I've also had good luck with Mountain horse boots; I had a pair that lasted three years of daily use before I had a hole in them.
STA is right, boots last longer with good care. Riding is one level of use, but if you're keeping your boots on to muck stalls and trudge in and out of muddy paddocks (as I did with my Mountain Horse) they will wear out more quickly.

Mar. 21, 2011, 05:20 PM
Yup, good care is what makes them last. Also, I wear those Tingley rubbers or Futi's over my tall boots and paddock bootss, and just take them off to ride (when I remember), which I think really helps a lot. It keeps them dry and prevents a lot of urine from eating through the soles. My custom Dehner's are 40 years old and although I haven't worn them in years the leather is still gorgeous.

Vesper Sparrow
Mar. 21, 2011, 05:28 PM
I have some going on four years now that have had almost daily use. My cobbler said the most important thing was to put in the boot trees right after I took them off.

Mar. 21, 2011, 05:36 PM
I have a pair of Rectiligne boots that have just started having zipper problems and I estimated that I have put in about 4500 hours of riding in them (about 20hours a week for the past 4.5 years). They have been the hardest working boots I've owned so far.

Mar. 21, 2011, 08:01 PM
I have a pair of inexpensive (not even sure of brand name) boots that I bought in 1991, maybe? So 20 years old. I use them all the time, and like the previous posted said, I put in the trees as soon as I hop off my horse and throw on my Ariat Fat Baby boots for walking around in, driving, mucking, etc. But I have very little wear and tear on these dress boots. And I try to keep them as clean as possible.

Mar. 21, 2011, 10:41 PM
Ah, see mine are for all types of barn use - and I really only shine them up before shows or if they're really dirty. It's not like I'm dancing in the mud pits or anything, but I'm certainly more on the don't care side of leather care.

Good to know, though, maybe I'll invest in a pair and change my habits.

Mar. 21, 2011, 11:08 PM
I put my boots on when it's time to ride and take them off when I get off. It helps that they are zippered and easy on/off. Even though they are only Ariat Challenges, they fit perfectly, and I want them to last forever. Used 3 - 4 X/wk for a year and showing no wear.

Mar. 22, 2011, 12:12 AM
I had my $200 ariat boots last for 6yrs. If I get the zippers and tongue replaced/repaired, they'll be good to go! I used those for everyday riding as well as showing. They cleaned up beautifully even time :)

Mar. 22, 2011, 12:44 AM
I guess I'm just heck on boots then. Mine keep blowing out on the sides of the ball of my feet, where the natural break is from walking in them.

hillary again
Mar. 22, 2011, 01:07 AM
I have Dehner dress boots which I bought in 1973, and these got a LOT of wear the first ten years of life.
I have Dehner paddock boots which I've had for seven years or longer.
I have really narrow feet, so the custom boots are my preference.

My tips:
1. like the other poster, take them off when you finish riding. Put the shoe trees in right away when you take them off, and use rolled up newspaper for the boot shafts (to help with sweat removal inside the boots). Wipe off horse sweat and dust from the outside.
2. do not buy boots with zippers. There is no way they will wear as well as those without. This is a tradeoff with the ease of getting them off, but hey, we managed before these zippers were popular.
3. use the small rubber pull on galoshes when wet.
4. Find a great repair place, in case you need some small repairs. For example, it's worth it to spend $x on a repair, if you have great boots which fit.
Good luck!

Mar. 22, 2011, 07:59 AM
I think the answer is to take better care of your boots! :-) Urine is killer on boots and that is probably why the foot is wearing out so quickly. Change before doing barn work and keep your boots cleaned. Wearing the rubbers certainly helps but remember to take them off so your boots don't hold any moisture and rot out.
I have a pair of Dehners that I bought in 1968 and beat the heck out of, including some very serious hunting-mud+washing mud off and wearing nearly all day every day and though kind of beat looking they are sound in foot and leg!

Mar. 22, 2011, 08:49 AM
My current Vogels are 10 years old and still going strong. Granted I don't ride in them every day (only for shows), I do take them off when I am not riding and at least clean them off with a damp rag. Cleaning is the key.

My paddock boots are Hadfield's and Dehners (have narrow feet so nothing else fits). They too last but the zippers are the killers in those. Once the zippers start going, that is it. But the good quality leather should last if cleaned and they can easily be resoled.

Mar. 22, 2011, 11:01 AM
I have a pair of Rectiligne boots that are about 6 years old, a pair of custom Vogels that are 13 years old, and a pair of Sergio Grasso's that are about 3 years old. I only ride in tall boots, so they do get a lot of use. The Vogels are the pull-on style, and I have not been wearing them as much lately as I have a hard time getting my foot out of them, even after just an hour or two of riding. I switched to the zip-up brands when medication I was on for my back caused slight edema in my legs, and there was no way I was going to get into the Vogels. I have never had an issue with the zippers in either of the other two pair of boots, but I am pretty anal about keeping them clean and properly stored. I also wear other shoes/boots to the barn and only put my tall boots on right before I am ready to get on.

They get wiped down after each ride, boot trees put in, stored in boot bags, and really polished (think Marine corp shine, thanks to Dad) once a month or so, depending on how much I have been wearing them.

If you are buying a new pair every year, I would recommend trying the Rectiligne boots. Even if you only get three years out of them (and I think you would really have to beat them up to kill them that fast), you're not spending much more, if not less, than you were when you were buying boots every year. My husband gave me a wax to try on the zippers that he uses on his motorcycle racing boots. It keeps them very subtly lubricated, but doesn't mess up the leather, and also slightly waterproofs the zipper area. Has worked great, but I can't remember the name of it at the moment. As others have said, care and treatment of the leather is the key in extending the life of any type of boot/shoe.

Mar. 22, 2011, 02:08 PM
I have one pair of Ariats that are almost 10 years old and I just got a new pair of Ariats alst spring. My older pair are still perfectly usable they just don't fit anymore and I intend to pass them off to one of my friends and I'm sure they will be usable for several more years to come. I think with boots, you get what you pay for. The ovation boots don't really strike me as very high quality and I wouldn't expect them to last for an extended period of time of consistent use.