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Charlie&Me
Mar. 23, 2012, 12:07 PM
Hoping somebody here can help me! I have an older pair of Dehners that have very little wear (I took a 10 yr riding break shortly after getting them) and I would really like to get zippers put in and add a cuff at the top with a more current outline. I'd kinda like the cuff to be fancier - some sort of fancy leather or a different color like maybe a dark navy that makes you look twice. I looked at the Dehner website and didn't really see anything that interested me (not many leather options and I didn't see any real color options besides black and brown).

So my question is - does anybody know of a tack store/boot company that I could work with long distance to make the changes I'm looking for? Thanks so much! :)

Ace
Mar. 23, 2012, 01:53 PM
I live in the land of the Dehner factory, and I would try calling them before ruling anything out. They are marvelous and do custom work. Good luck!

Giddy-up
Mar. 23, 2012, 03:11 PM
Call Dehner--they are super nice to work with.

I just shipped my Dehners back to them & had them put the zippers in. Cost me $225 (zippers plus shipping back). I don't know if I would have let anybody else do it?

Now I will say Dehner did advise against zippers (I think that is their standard mantra cause of zipper breaking horror stories) & cause the zippers were being added after the fact they couldn't straight down the back (how you see most zip boots). My zippers are on the inside near the front of my leg. I actually like how it looks. Plus Dehner made my boots all shiny new looking!

BAC
Mar. 23, 2012, 03:30 PM
Now I will say Dehner did advise against zippers (I think that is their standard mantra cause of zipper breaking horror stories) & cause the zippers were being added after the fact they couldn't straight down the back (how you see most zip boots). My zippers are on the inside near the front of my leg. I actually like how it looks. Plus Dehner made my boots all shiny new looking!

You had it done the right way, those zippers will last much longer than those put down the back of the boot. My local tack shop (and most good bootmakers) warn against zippers but if you insist then the only way they will do it is on the inside towards the front of the leg, the way Dehner did with your boots. That is very popular with dressage riders as well.

beckiec
Mar. 23, 2012, 03:39 PM
You had it done the right way, those zippers will last much longer than those put down the back of the boot. My local tack shop (and most good bootmakers) warn against zippers but if you insist then the only way they will do it is on the inside towards the front of the leg, the way Dehner did with your boots. That is very popular with dressage riders as well.

Dehner advised not to put in zippers when I called too. Wonder about the zippers in front though: think that would be fine for dressage, but worry about irritation from zipper for jumping. Any jumpers/eventers that have front zips? what about wear to the zipper/saddle?

Charlie&Me
Mar. 23, 2012, 08:33 PM
Thanks so much! I'll definitely give Dehner a call and see what they say. Great to hear they have outstanding customer service. I'm not dead set on getting zippers - just makes like a little easier. I do want something done about the tops though - love the current look of Spanish tops and my boots currently look way too short. It's almost comical!

Florida Gator - Definitely interested to hear what happens so please let me know what you end up doing.

Tha Ridge
Mar. 23, 2012, 08:48 PM
Dehner advised not to put in zippers when I called too. Wonder about the zippers in front though: think that would be fine for dressage, but worry about irritation from zipper for jumping. Any jumpers/eventers that have front zips? what about wear to the zipper/saddle?

I had a friend with Der Dau boots that had the zipper in the front. No problems.

Dewey
Mar. 24, 2012, 09:55 AM
You might consider having gussets put in instead of zippers. I have a beautiful pair of Dehners that were made for me in the 70s--they were way too tight when I started riding again about 10 years ago. I could barely get them off and on. The Dehners people regretfully refused to work on my boots--they were too old, and they have a policy against doing work on boots over a certain age--so I had the gussets put in by another repair shop. I love my boots again and expect to get many, many more years of riding from them.

Since your boots aren't as old as mine were, I'll bet the Dehners folks would put the gussets in for you.

Kryswyn
Mar. 24, 2012, 03:41 PM
Dehner generally won't deal with boots older than 10 years because they feel the leather has been compromised. Especially when they've just sat unused in temperatures that may have damaged the boots and stitching.

That being said, they also hate putting zippers in. Really hate putting zippers down the back because they really hate compromising the heel area. They will grudgingly put them in if you insist. They perfer putting them in the inside front and for good reason. The zipper can actually 'turn the corner' making it easier to put your foot in. Also, there is less stress on the zipper because there is less wrinkling in the ankle when the zipper's placed in the front.

Unless you have a really strange leg shape and position, there should be no issues with the zipper rubbing you or your saddle.

They look just fine.

SaddleFitterVA
Mar. 24, 2012, 04:42 PM
I'd see if Dehner will do it.

I have two pairs. My dress boots have zippers down the back. My next pair will have the front zipper instead. The zipper broke once and I had it replaced at a local shop, and it was my own fault. I layered way more clothes under those boots than I should have compared to what they were made to fit.

Then, I ordered a pair of field boots. Those I have gussets, no zipper. I figure that if my zipper breaks in my dress boots, even at a dressage show, I can still ride in my field boots and while not as formal, it is not against the rules. I don't want to be putting electrical tape on my boots because I have no fallback.

I always make sure to have both pairs polished & with me at all shows, it is my insurance! :lol:

Charlie&Me
Mar. 24, 2012, 09:46 PM
Hmmm...well mine are right on the border of 10 yrs. I think I got them in 2000 but not 100% sure. They have gussets in them that were put in by Dehner. The front zipper is interesting - these would be jumping boots (XC or jumpers) so not too concerned with being ultra conservative.

Guess I'm back to the tack shop avenue. I'll call Dehner but thinking I'll need to go elsewhere. Thanks all for the suggestions! Keep'em coming!

xeroxchick
Mar. 25, 2012, 11:44 AM
I have some Dehners that I love and have had and worn since 1989. Sent them back about five years ago and they repaired the worn-out leather by adding a new piece to the side and put tops on them. They are still going strong and they came back better than ever. So the boots were about sixteen years old when they repaired them. They are really great to work with, even after making my last pair too loose then too snug, but I blame the stupid salesperson (at a now closed tack store) who took my measurements. Dehner is making it right, so I can't complain too much.

kayteedee
Mar. 25, 2012, 12:24 PM
great thread, thanks for posting- I was trying to decide on a new pair of boots but your thread has given me the idea to call Vogel and ask if they can add a higher cuff or something to update the look. The boots are in great shape otherwise.

mvp
Mar. 25, 2012, 04:23 PM
Dehner generally won't deal with boots older than 10 years because they feel the leather has been compromised. Especially when they've just sat unused in temperatures that may have damaged the boots and stitching.


I have some Dehners that I love and have had and worn since 1989. Sent them back about five years ago and they repaired the worn-out leather by adding a new piece to the side and put tops on them. They are still going strong and they came back better than ever. So the boots were about sixteen years old when they repaired them. They are really great to work with, even after making my last pair too loose then too snug, but I blame the stupid salesperson (at a now closed tack store) who took my measurements. Dehner is making it right, so I can't complain too much.

Ruhroh. I have a very old pair and I don't.want.them.to.die. I don't see why Dehner couldn't zombie them up into a new pair that fit and looked good. Otherwise it's what-- a Dumpster forcrissakes? A pauper's grave seems inappropirate for custom-made books with my name in gold on the inside.

SaddleFitterVA
Mar. 25, 2012, 04:43 PM
http://www.dehner.com/pricelists/Repairs.11.pdf

I thought I read that the age is 20 yrs, but they might opt to not work on some if the condition was bad...

Anyway, there is the Dehner pricelist for repairs.

When I wanted my second pair, I was able to call them directly when they were having a sale. Since the measurements from the first pair (from a tack store) were perfect, they just made me another pair from those.

Before you give up on the boots, call and talk to them, they are super nice.

And honestly, for $750 you can get the Voyager leather that shines up nicely, in a fully lined boot...add zippers for $100 if you want. Last I checked those fancy Sergio Grassos, which are not custom were getting close to the Dehner price. They have a sale every year, when I got my second pair, they were $150 off, so it was not much more, for a truly custom pair of boots.

Dewey
Mar. 25, 2012, 07:19 PM
http://www.dehner.com/pricelists/Repairs.11.pdf

I thought I read that the age is 20 yrs, but they might opt to not work on some if the condition was bad...

Anyway, there is the Dehner pricelist for repairs.

When I wanted my second pair, I was able to call them directly when they were having a sale. Since the measurements from the first pair (from a tack store) were perfect, they just made me another pair from those.

Before you give up on the boots, call and talk to them, they are super nice.

And honestly, for $750 you can get the Voyager leather that shines up nicely, in a fully lined boot...add zippers for $100 if you want. Last I checked those fancy Sergio Grassos, which are not custom were getting close to the Dehner price. They have a sale every year, when I got my second pair, they were $150 off, so it was not much more, for a truly custom pair of boots.

When I emailed them, the President of the company answered my email and said they regretted it, but they could not work on any boots older than 20 years.

I have often wondered why more people don't buy Dehners. The workmanship is impeccable, it's an American company, and they have apparently offer a updated option with a narrower ankle.

Kryswyn
Mar. 25, 2012, 09:01 PM
Oops. My bad, when I went back and reread this thread I read "10 years" and thought that can't be right. My bad for not catching the typo. Of course it's 20 years because Dehner IS a quality product.

Charlie&Me
Mar. 27, 2012, 11:35 AM
Ok - called Dehner and while very nice, seemed a bit perplexed at my request. The nice lady told me based on the style number I gave her that my boots already have a spanish top. But when I compare them with my Tredstep's, they look pretty straight across...oh well. She had to get back to me so I'll let you know what they come back with. Thanks for all the help!

Dewey
Mar. 27, 2012, 11:51 AM
Ok - called Dehner and while very nice, seemed a bit perplexed at my request. The nice lady told me based on the style number I gave her that my boots already have a spanish top. But when I compare them with my Tredstep's, they look pretty straight across...oh well. She had to get back to me so I'll let you know what they come back with. Thanks for all the help!

I think what you want is what Dehner calls the Italian top (scroll down to see):

http://www.dehner.com/customize.html

Charlie&Me
Mar. 29, 2012, 12:16 PM
Ok guys - heard back from Dehner. They can put a navy topper on the boots with an Italian outline like Dewey pointed out. I'm thinking it will end up looking like a hunt top. Thoughts?

I'm hemming and hawing so some input would be very much appreciated!

BAC
Mar. 29, 2012, 12:23 PM
Navy tops on black boots? Yuck! I would just add matching black with the Spanish top.

Dewey
Mar. 29, 2012, 12:34 PM
It's hard to visualize.

TrakHack
Mar. 29, 2012, 01:00 PM
Yes, I made the mistake when I got my Dehners 10 years ago of thinking "Spanish top" was higher than it is - you definitely want "Italian". I feel extra foolish since I actually was in their factory to be measured and shouldn't have made that mistake. The boot height is the one thing I would like to change about my boots, too, but I don't think I want to spend $175-$235 to do it.

Would it be patent navy or smooth?

Giddy-up
Mar. 29, 2012, 02:46 PM
Dehner advised not to put in zippers when I called too. Wonder about the zippers in front though: think that would be fine for dressage, but worry about irritation from zipper for jumping. Any jumpers/eventers that have front zips? what about wear to the zipper/saddle?

Dehner doesn't add any material when putting in the zipper. They basically cut the boot, insert zipper. The leather actually goes back together a little over the zipper. Seeing where the zipper is placed, I think it will be fine with my saddle. If the zipper is rubbing my saddle, then my leg is in the wrong position. ;)

Dehner has a picture on their website of how they position the inside front zipper.