A regularly worn pair of climbing shoes is like a pair of custom leather gloves that have been designed to fit the shape of your hands anatomically, making them fit you well like a glove. And when they are properly seasoned, they make climbing that much better as they have groves in the right places that make easy work of balancing and parching on any rock ledge or climbing surface.
So much so that when they are no longer offer you the support you need as you rock climb, you have a pretty hard time giving them up. Fortunately, if the only part of your climbing shoes is the sole, you can simply resole them and give them a new lease of life.
This not only saves you some money, but it also eliminates the breaking-in period before a new pair of climbing shoes begins to feel right when you wear them. So when is the right time to get your climbing shoes resoled? And is it worth it?
How Do I Know if My Climbing Shoes are Worn Out?
Your climbing shoes are worn out if you can see holes in the soles. Additionally, if you can feel rocks or other objects jutting through the shoes and touching your feet, then the shoes are definitely worn out.
While you can get away with wearing shoes with holes in the upper part, especially if your forte is crack climbing, you must work on resoling your shoes if the soles have holes. This gives you a chance to reuse the shoe while it still has structure and saves you from a potentially dangerous accident.
When Should I Get My Climbing Shoes Resoled?
Your shoes a ready for resoling when the sole recedes to the point that the rand is now visible. Ideally, you should resole your shoes as soon as the sole starts to thin out. Doing so before the rand begins to wear out saves you shoed from losing structure and becoming damaged beyond repair.
The rand is not designed to be used as a sole. And any wear on it while being repairable costs more to fix than merely resoling the shoes. And in some cases, shoe resolers may decline to repair the rand if they are too degraded. At this point, you cannot fix your climbing shoes, and your only option is to get a new pair.
How Much Does it Cost to Resole Climbing Shoes?
The cost varies from state to state, and it also depends on the size of the sole and the type of rubber used to resole your shoes. That said, the average cost of resoling ranges between $35 and $70. This is contingent on the size of the sole needed and the resoling charges.
Is it Worth Resoling Climbing Shoes?
Yes, it is. Considering a new pair of climbing shoes cost $180 and above, your saving could range from $110 to $145(depending on the resoling price). This is a huge saving that you can use to invest in other climbing gear.
How Long Does Climbing Shoe Rubber Last?
This depends on how often you climb. An average timeline is 3-9 months. Also, the type of sole and the climbing terrain plays a crucial role in determining how long the resoles will last. A pair of climbing shoes use in a gym will not wear out as fast as a pair of shoes worn when rock climbing steep rock facades.
Check this too: How to clean rock climbing shoes
How Do You Fix a Hole in a Climbing Shoe?
The best option would be to get a resole professional to patch up the hole for you. However, if the hole is on the leather part, you can sew it or patch it using glue on your own.
Here are some simple tricks you can use to patch up a hole in your shoe;
Using shoe goo
- Clean the sole of the shoe thoroughly.
- Trim away any part of the sole that is hanging loose or sticking out to create a smooth surface.
- Cover the hole from inside the shoe to prevent the Shoe Goo from seeping into the shoe. You can use duct tape or a piece of plastic paper glue in place from the inside.
- Cover the hole with the Shoe Goo. You can use an ice cube to spread out the Shoe Goo over the hole.
- Remove the duct tape/fabric from inside the shoe once the Shoe Goo has dried. Or you can leave it to act as an inside patch.
- Then use sandpaper with fine grain to smooth out the edges and remove any unwanted Shoe Goo.
Using hole inserts
- Nowadays, it is possible to get a hole insert manufactured to patch up shoes. Most of these hole inserts are designed to be used inside the shoes, which helps to reinforce the shoe fabric.
- Get a commercially made shoe hole insert such as Shoe Armour and apply it to the shoe as per the manufacturer’s instructions.
Using shoe patches
- This is similar to clothes patching.
- Simply cut a piece of fabric matching the material used to make your climbing shoes and use it to patch the hole.
- The piece should big enough to cover the entire hole without leaving too much material on the edges.
- Ideally, you should use two patches for better results. And remember to use glue meant for the particular type of fabric you are using.
- Start by applying glue to the patch and sticking it to the shoe. Then glue the second patch over the first patch.
- Patch it on the inside and outside using the same method for a more robust patchwork.
Using liquid filler
- This is typically used for repairing leather shoes.
- Smooth out the edges of the hole by trimming the hole.
- Then cut a backing patch to size and place glue on it if it does not come with a sticky surface.
- Then insert the patch into the hole from inside the shoe and apply a thin layer of the filler liquid over the entire hole. Spread it until you form a smooth layer and let it dry for a few hours.
Now that you have learned how to save your favorite pair of shoes, it is essential to understand when a pair is worth saving and when you should get a replacement pair. Resoling may save you some bucks, but if the shoe structure is damaged, the effort is worthless as you may end up losing grip and being maimed. Suppose an accident occurs due to wearing worn-out climbing shoes.