Monday, February 27, 2006

Limmer boot grease

Five years ago I made one of the best purchases of my life. I had a bootmaker named Jim Freeman in Middlebury Vermont make me a pair of custom hiking boots. I've probably logged 3,000 miles on those boots since then, and they have been wonderful.

When Freeman gave me the boots, he told me to use Lexol leather shampoo to clean them and Sno*Seal to seal them from water. Unfortunately, I have found that after five years, these boots have started to show some significant cracking around the flex points.

I decided that it was time to start looking for some replacements to use when these boots got too cracked, and I came across the Limmer family in Intervale NH. I got a new set of boots (factory made in Austria) from them along with what they recommended for taking care of the boots: Limmer Boot Grease.

During the process of breaking in my new Limmer boots, I've been using the grease on the new boots, but I've also been using it on my old Freemans, and it's definitely rejuvenated them. The leather is more supple, and more waterproof.

Something simple that I like: a hand-made product that lets me keep something that I treasure in good condition.

6 comments:

Stacie said...

Are you talking about Dan Freeman at Leatherworks on Park Street? Is he still there? Why don't you have him make you another pair? I grew up in Middlebury and worked at the Vermont Country Kitchen next door while I was in high school. Dan is a very nice man.

Norrebo said...

I don't know if he's still there. The boots were very expensive -- nearly $1000 -- and that was 5 years ago. The factory limmers were only $300.

He is a very, very nice man though.

Stacie said...

I have a feeling he might still be there. I don't get home as much as I would like. One time I wanted a piece of leather for a hair thingie and he gave me a scrap from a belt and punched holes in it and everything and I don't think he even charged me anything for it. Wow! $1000! I had no idea how much he charged for boots.

Joe said...

I've been thinking about getting some Limmer's myself and just came across your blog. just wondering what you thought of the boots. I hear they run a bit large. Im a size 11 usually. dont have much opportunity to get to a Limmer dealer cuz im in Northern California. what boot model did you get? I'd appreciate the info.

Thanks

tub said...

I have the "mid-weights". As I say in the blog, they're pretty old-school, traditional Austrian-style boots. I can't really say whether they run large or small. The boots are manufactured to English sizes (which are 'bigger' than US sizes) and then arbitrarily assigned a US size. For example my boots are English size 15, US size 16 and they're probably a little bit on the small side. If you contact Limmer I'm sure they would send you a pair of boots to try out.

Ginny Crandall said...

This is interesting. I would have thought that the custom hiking boots would have lasted you longer. It's good to hear that you have the Limmer's, though. I would love to get some. Can you find them online or do you have to find a retailer? I live in the mountains and want to start taking long hikes. Any help you could give me would be really appreciated.