In A Nutshell
- The most durable boots available are the Boss Engineer boots by Wesco. They are hand-crafted with the highest quality leather and have an extremely durable vibram sole. Wesco boots are hand-made in the United States and are resoleable. With proper maintenance, they can last a lifetime. They are available for around $455.
- Redback’s Bobcat Leather Work Boot is another quality option. Since they have Polyurethane soles, Bobcats are not resoleable. They do, however, last a long time with proper care and are more affordable at around $176.
Boot quality has declined over the past few decades, as manufacturers drift away from high-quality materials and thoughtful craftsmanship to mass-produced synthetic products. Brands that once represented quality, such as Redwing, have moved their factories overseas. Durable boots still exist, though. Wesco is a company that has been making boots for lumberjacks, motorcyclists, and workmen since 1918. Priding themselves on their craftsmanship, Wesco continues in the tradition of artisan-quality boot making. According to their website:
Wesco boots are built in our own factory, in our own backyard. Every boot is made from top quality, full grain leather. The integrity of materials used throughout our boot building process is above reproach—steel is used where another boot maker might use plastic—leather is always used instead of cork. Our dedicated Wesco boot-makers work as a team, hand-to-hand, in a 155 step-by-step process that requires skill, strength, and discipline.
Wesco’s Engineer model has removable shock-absorbing inserts that are ideal for motorcyclists. Its strap is fastened with nickel-plated hardware. They are stylish, and the shaft measures 11″ from the heel, which might be too tall depending on your preference. The price tag also puts them out of most people’s reach.
The Boss Engineer boots are available from Amazon for about $410.
A less expensive but still reliable option is Redback’s Bobcat Leather Work Boot. Redback boots are made in Australia from 2.5mm thick leather and are 20% tougher than other work boots. The soles are handmade Polyurethane, which lasts for a long while if it is well-maintained. According to Redback:
The boots are made from traditionally preferred cement lasted method whereby the leather is wrapped under the insole and fused under heat and pressure with high tech Polyester and Polamide molten sealant/adhesive.
The Bobcat Leather Work Boot is available on Amazon for about $176.