Saturday, May 12, 2012

A stitch in time: Chaco quick-fix

I love my Chacos.  I bought them when I moved to Durango back in 2004.  They've been on multiple river trips and tidepooling excursions, southwest desert and mountain hikes, northeast rambles and coastal island scrambles.  I just about live in them from mid-spring through late fall. 

floating the san jaun, june '06

But after eight years of moderately-heavy use, the inevitable has happened. . . the webbing of one strap finally ripped and several other straps are on their way.  The sandals made it through last fall though I knew it was only a matter of time before I'd experience a blow out.  Oh, and the soles are nearly smooth and starting to come unglued from foot bed under the ball of my foot.  Not a few days after I dug them out of the spring/summer tub last week did the strap pull away from the foot bed as I slid them on.  

at least it's a clean tear
nearly-bare soles, but still rather grippy!

The great thing about Chaco is that they offer repair services to salvage a favorite pair: rewebbing with any of a huge range of color options, over 90 for women's sandals, and resoling with one of three tread options.  For almost $90 ($36 for rewebbing, $40 for resoling, plus shipping), my sandals would be almost new again.  For around $100, I could get a new pair altogether.  Considering this pair has lasted me about eight years, I know I got my money's worth the first time around, and either way, I'll get my money's worth for the next eight years. 

who's next?
But, I'm still undecided - if I send them to rehab, I'll be without a staple footwear choice for a couple of weeks. . . and I haven't had the time to shop around to see what is available in local stores or elsewhere on the web.  And, frankly, they're still in perfectly good shape, for the most part.

So for now, I went with a crafty quick fix: a couple of stitches between the ripped strap and its crossover neighbor.  I could have gone with duct tape, but this is slighly more subtle, and less likely to end up sticking to my foot. 

a stitch in time saves nine-tyish dollars
(for now)
Conveniently, the ripped strap is one that runs against the foot from the arch to the outside by my pinkie toe, and is somewhat held in place by the still-attached strap that runs across the wider part of my foot and over the ripped strap.

I'm sure with constant wearing this spring it will only be a matter of time until some of the other straps give-way and I run out of still-attached straps to use as anchors.  But until then, I will contemplate my color and sole choices if I go the rehab-route, and window shop this years' models until I finally break down and retire  or repair this pair.

we'll wait a few more weeks. . . or months. . .

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