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Author Topic: different softness of the soles  (Read 8803 times)
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justin
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« Reply #15 on: November 23, 2009, 10:24:30 AM »

Wow what a weird QC issue!

I just checked all my pairs and I got nothin' -- I'd actually like to have a thin-soled Classic pair.

It seems that the toe slots taper off at the ends as they curl around the end of the toe.  This makes me wonder if the toe thickness is an accurate indicator of the total thickness ... which leads me to ask -- on these thin soled versions, how deep are the sipes?
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« Reply #15 on: November 23, 2009, 10:24:30 AM »

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« Reply #16 on: November 23, 2009, 11:49:29 AM »

Wow what a weird QC issue!

I just checked all my pairs and I got nothin' -- I'd actually like to have a thin-soled Classic pair.

It seems that the toe slots taper off at the ends as they curl around the end of the toe.  This makes me wonder if the toe thickness is an accurate indicator of the total thickness ... which leads me to ask -- on these thin soled versions, how deep are the sipes?


It might be blue camo & mauve/sand specific. I'm going to whole earth provisions to check this out today.

From the top the toes the rubber on the lips does not look too much different between the two colors, but the difference is plain to see on the bottom.

The siping on my blue camos is there, but not as deep as the grey/fuschia ksos.

I think thin soled classics would be ok, but not my KSOs. Although having the thinner sole dramatically shortens the life span of these vffs, which is not value for your buck.
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« Reply #17 on: November 23, 2009, 12:04:59 PM »

i'm going to check mine out when I get home. I have sand/tan classics, all black classics which i haven't taken the tags off yet and will probably return, and all black kso's. I'll let y'all know what I find.
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« Reply #18 on: November 23, 2009, 01:29:41 PM »

Wish I understood how they formed these soles -- right now I'm imagining pouring liquid rubber into some mold and then it gets pressed or something ... and these thin ones just don't get enough rubber I guess.

Yeah makes sense to want thicker on high-use KSOs.  I bet you could get them swapped out by contacting Vibram -- they'd probably want to know about this QC issue.
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« Reply #18 on: November 23, 2009, 01:29:41 PM »

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« Reply #19 on: November 23, 2009, 01:42:30 PM »

I plan to return them to whole earth provision and see about getting a replacement. They've been pretty great so far.

Is there a better way to contact Vibram other than the website's 120 character thing? I'd like to send them pictures and stuff about this problem.
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« Reply #20 on: November 23, 2009, 02:28:14 PM »

checked mine out. they're all standard. was kind of hoping my classics were thinner...
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« Reply #21 on: November 23, 2009, 04:10:52 PM »

I plan to return them to whole earth provision and see about getting a replacement. They've been pretty great so far.

Is there a better way to contact Vibram other than the website's 120 character thing? I'd like to send them pictures and stuff about this problem.

You could try one of these -- Tim had found these email address for the petition:

Polito Sara <sara.polito@vibram.com>
cc   vibram@vibram.com,
staff@vibram.com,
vibram_milano@vibram.com,
sales@vibramusa.com,
info@vibram.us,
Inquiry@vibramfivefingers.com,
matteo.crovetto@vibram.com,
vibram@netsite.com.br
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« Reply #22 on: November 24, 2009, 01:34:33 AM »

I actually used the 120 character thing with a simple message and got a reply the next morning from someone at Vibram.'

My message was very brief, but to the point; "I'm having some sizing issues with my Treks and one of the sole lugs is coming off. Please call 480.XXX.XXXX."

By the next morning I had a received both a voicemail and an email from someone asking to go into more detail. I didn't have time to respond right away, but since then, every time I have emailed (haven't had a chance to call during decent hours), I have had a reply in my inbox by no later than 8am Eastern each time.

Their customer service is nothing short of amazing, I would use the 120 character thing because I'm sure it only routes your problem to the correct person so that no time is wasted in getting you through to the right person.


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« Reply #23 on: November 24, 2009, 11:02:04 PM »

Well, the thin soles are confirmed as a factory defect. I went to whole earth provisions (awesome store and service) and found numerous vffs with thin soles. There were 3 pairs of blue camo ksos, mauve/sand classics, and even a pair of grey/fuschia ksos that had 1 mm soles.

There were a few pairs of blue camo ksos that had normal thick soles and I'm getting a pair shipped to me from another store and they checked to make sure it wasn't thin soled, so here's to hoping.

The first picture is the sand/mauve classics and the second picture is the grey/fuschia ksos with thin soles.
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« Reply #24 on: November 25, 2009, 01:32:05 AM »

Damn, that's thin. What are the disadvantages of this again?
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« Reply #25 on: November 25, 2009, 01:42:35 AM »

Damn, that's thin. What are the disadvantages of this again?

Very short lifespan, no durability, less bang for your buck.
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« Reply #26 on: November 25, 2009, 11:39:57 AM »

So I just checked my wife's black Classics for "thin toes" and sure enough, there it is.  What I checked next was siping depth -- specifically as compared to my non-thin-toed Classics.  I used an eyeglass screwdriver from my leatherman, bent back the sipes to expose the depth, and just compared how far I could stick it into the sipes.  Here I saw no apparent difference between the thin-toed Classics (my wife's) and my non-thin-toed Classics.

Not satisfied, I just took calipers and took a measurement on the TT Classics -- 4.5 mm thick at the midpoint of the midfoot.  Same for standard Classics.  I repeated these measurements on the heel -- here I did notice that my Classics were a mm thicker at the heel than hers.  I went on to check the thickness of a pair of Sprints at the heel.  They were also a mm different.  So maybe my Classics are thick-heeled?  I can't really compare these to my old Classics b/c they are more worn all over.

Anyway, at least as it pertains to my wife's Classics, the thin-ness at the toes does not pervade the entire sole. 

Incidentally, I would actually like to have the rubber thinnest at the toe joints to maximize flexibility there.  That point isn't a major point of wear for me (nor a major point of impact) so thin-ness wouldn't matter.

But it should be standard across different VFFs for sure.
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« Reply #27 on: November 25, 2009, 01:56:16 PM »

Having the thinnest rubber at the most flexible joint might be good for the short term, but like the deep cuts on the lugs of the treks; the thin rubber is stressed a lot from the bending of the toes and can fail or crack the rubber like the trek toes.

Overall, there shouldn't be this issue because there should be a standard and it's not being met. Sad
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« Reply #28 on: November 25, 2009, 02:07:11 PM »

Yeah I suppose that would be troublesome...
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« Reply #29 on: November 25, 2009, 04:05:18 PM »

Having the thinnest rubber at the most flexible joint might be good for the short term, but like the deep cuts on the lugs of the treks; the thin rubber is stressed a lot from the bending of the toes and can fail or crack the rubber like the trek toes.

Overall, there shouldn't be this issue because there should be a standard and it's not being met. Sad

Yeah the Trek toe thin-ness is further problematic b/c there's a very catchy "lip" right next to the thin part which could easily cause a pull and a tear. 

Anyway, the point isn't really in question -- VFFs within the same model should be the same within a certain error tolerance.  In the case of this "thin toe" problem (as well as the mesh problem), I can't imagine that being within "spec."
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