Since 1901, Chippewa Boots has manufactured rugged boots for work, hunting and hiking at their US plant in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. The company’s product line is above average in cost and quality and appeals to buyers seeking superior performance and durability at a fair price. The Chippewa Men’s 6” Rugged Handcrafted boot is a perennial best seller for the company and is priced within the mid-range of their products.
The boot is constructed from high grade burnished leather that is water and heat resistant. Standard issue is in dark brown color the company has named “Chocolate Apache.” The leather quickly assumes a worn look that buyers find attractive, which is understandable since the boot is often worn in extreme environments. Maintenance is easy using typical mink oil or leather conditioners, which allows the boot to withstand years of normal wear.
A VibramGumlite traction sole provides firm footing in diverse environments including loose rock, rain-slick wood and concrete, sand, and oily workspaces. Gumlite is a synthetic substance comparable to rubber is appearance and performance, yet weighing half as much. Sole slip-resistance and traction performance does not degrade in cold temperatures, nor does the material suffer premature wear when compared to rubber soles.
This boot features a full 6” of shaft length, arch to collar, for maximum protection of the exposed bones of the foot and ankle. Lacing runs the length of the shaft and features steel eyelets and D-ring lacing hardware for maximum service life. As with the rest of the boot, the shaft features triple stitching throughout the stress points. The upper collar is padded and stitched for increased comfort and wear. A rear pull loop is firmly attached.
The target customer is expected to wear the boot for long hours and in extreme environments, often while bearing considerable weight and/or traversing rough terrain. To prevent foot strain or injury, therefore, the foot bed is highly cushioned and addition padding is added as a removable cushioned insert, which allows the buyer to create more space and greater comfort or replace with an aftermarket full or partial cushion or prescribed orthonic as required.
Chippewa boot receive high acclaim for their appearance. While ostensibly a work boot, many buyers wear the boot in social situations as well because of its attractive design. The wide rounded toe is not unlike many dress or casual dress shoes, and the Chocolate Apache color goes well with much of the attire typically worn by men. While the boot features a worn look, when properly maintained with oil and conditioners, it is not an unattractive or seedy appearance.
· Quality leather and workmanship
· Attractive appearance features embossed logo and contrast colored welt
· High traction and slip resistance
· Strong lacing and lace hardware
· Cushioned footbed
· The Gumlite sole has received a number of reports of premature failure
· The leather has a longer than average (2 weeks) break in period
The Chippewa Men’s 6” Rugged Handcrafted work boot is a durable and comfortable work boot that should provide years of adequate performance when subjected to typical work environments. Within a product line of top-tier work boots, its mid-price represents good value for those willing to pay a little more for a better shoe. Premature sole failure is a concern; however, the company and its retail distribution partners offer strong customer support. In a worst case, the sole can be replaced by local repair shops for a nominal cost. It is available online and from major retailers.