Sunday, 24 March 2013

Repairing 5Ten Impact 2 Low shoes


I've had these shoes from +Five Ten since October 2010. Since then I've done all of my riding in these shoes, until February this year, when I got a pair of SPDs. I still use these a lot though. That's a lot of miles! They are extremely warm, very sturdy with reinforced toe boxes and heel cups and a wrap-around tongue which stays in place no matter what. The tongue is very well padded, as are the ankle cuffs which provide more protection from rock strikes and flying debris.

5Ten Impact 2 Low shoes - love the way that reflective 5 pops out in the flash.

They are still extremely snug, warm and have a grip like a vice. Do you know that feeling when you have spilt some sticky juice drink on a linoleum or laminate floor and have only wiped it down, not properly cleaned the floor? When you walk across it, it makes that sticky, cracking sound when your foot lifts up? Yes? These shoes make that sound, have that feeling and all without the sticky mess. Adjusting your foot position on flat pedals with pins means you have to actually lift your foot off to reposition - it's difficult to swivel on them. That's down to the patented "Stealth Rubber" compound.

As with all products they have cons as well as the pros I've just mentioned. They aren't waterproof, so in rainy weather or if you splash through streams or becks, all that thick padding becomes waterlogged, which makes them heavier than what they already are. Each shoe weighs 600 grams when dry. If you plan ahead with waterproof socks, this isn't too much off a problem. They are quite wide and can rub on your crank arms, or catch on your chain stays if they are holding a wide hub (My Scott Sub 35 does). One of the most annoying cons is that the nylon loops holding the laces in place eventually snap, meaning you can't fasten the shoe up properly. This has happened to three of the loops so far on my pair.

...whole loops and nothing but the loops...
...So help me God...
I was pretty upset when this happened as I wasn't sure how I could fix it. They are quite expensive shoes so I didn't want to just get rid of them. I did some Googling and came across this blog entry. The guy there had the same problem as I had and resorted to drilling his shoes! I was nervous about doing this so left a comment on his blog asking advice. He replied, and I got busy with the drill.

Repairing the broken loop

If the drill bit is sharp, you don't need to mark the hole
Basically, you just need a sharp drill bit and a steady hand. I used a 4mm steel bit. I just set the point in the middle of the band of leather that holds the loops in place, in line with the loop itself and started the drill going slowly.

Clean hole

You will need to drill the hole a couple, maybe three or four times so that it is totally clean through.
When you flip it over and check the other side, you might find that the hole doesn't look so clean, or you might not be able to see it. There is a flap of material that covers the underside hole, so just push the lace up through the hole and you'll have a fully functioning pair of high quality MTB shoes again.

The finished result
I realise that this is a very specific tutorial/piece of advice. I'd say if you feel relatively confident using tools, and what you are working on is of solid construction, you should give it a go to try and repair it. If it works, you just saved a load of money and gives the item a more unique appeal. If you were considering disposing of the item and the repair job doesn't work out as intended, you've essentially lost nothing, but gained some experience.

How about you? Have you ever fixed anything that looked as if it was beyond repair? Let me know in the comments.

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