Sole Considerations: Choosing a sole is as individual a decision as one's needs. If you want a thin sole that works best for a moccasin choose one of the new soles. Vibram Scooter Sole has the Morflex Micro-Cellular Rubber Compound, making this sole longer wearing and more flexible than conventional Cushioned Soles. A great sole if you are looking for Great Cushion and flexibility, but will wear faster than the other sole options. The Vibram Izalco Sole is another great thinner moccasin sole offering great flexibility and a slight tread pattern for added traction. If your main concern is deep traction and long wear, the Vibram Mini-Lug is the best. If you want a thick and stiff sole, with good cushion, pick the Birkenstock, recommended only for those who are familiar with and love Birkenstock Soles. The Vibram Sport Sole is a good all around sole offering good wear, cushion and flexibility, and it comes in sheets and can accommodate oversized sole patterns. The Goop Sole, as used on the Stealth Trackers, is the favorite of those who are looking for something more traditional in look. It also allows one to maintain their own soles by reapplying the mixture as needed. It is also the quietest and desired by those who, such as Trackers and Bow Hunters, want to walk softly and quietly through the woods etc. It doesn't have as much cushion as the other's. I tell people it's the perfect sole for those who wish they could walk around barefoot with just a little cushion. It gives one the ability to feel the ground without injury. It is a normal occurrence for the Goop sole to become detached along the arch and instep seams, especially new moccasins. Wait till the moccasins are completely broken in and the detaching process has taken place along most of the outside seam area, then it can be trimmed with a pair of scissors, and
re-Gooped along these areas. The reason to do this is because they will allow moisture in along this exposed seam, and dirt can get trapped there which will wear away the threads that hold the seams together. Periodic patching with Goop is required to maintain the soles. Two new soles: the Vibram Magna is very heavy duty, rugged and long lasting, and the Vibram Newflex is very lightweight and bouncy, with traction. Both will make great soles for specific usage.
I don't recommended arches or cushioning for Goop or Double Leather soles - these options don't function well with these soles because they need a more solid base, and these soles are designed to wrap around the foot rather than lie flat to the ground. For more information on the Sole In A Jar, go to the Goop page. I also offer the Earthing Style - Double Leather Sole - with no rubber insulating materials, using the suede side of the leather for those who want to better contact the Earth, and enjoy the healing properties of the foots natural sensory response and reflexology.
- Moccasins are soft and tend to give with the foot rather than conform the foot to a molded shape like stiffer boots do. Moccasins don't have a heel counter, which holds the heel in place. Without this some find that their heel is traveling over the heel area of their moccasins. Having a heel can accentuate this potential problem, as it will some heavy individuals. I have found that the Insoles I make out of Wool Felt are far superior to that of the Sheep Shearing which was used when these moccasins were first developed. Initially the shearing feels great, but it wears quickly on all pressure points so that in a short time you have virtually no cushion value in them. The shearing also is harder to keep clean, and traps dirt particles easily. The Wool Felt offers easier break-in, and far greater life and cushion. It also allows for the addition of optional Arch Supports and/or Orthotic Cushioning. Arch Supports are a matter of personal preference. These are custom designed according to your tracings. A rubber arch cookie is sandwiched between a piece of leather and wool felt. If you always wear shoes with arches and like them, you may like them in these moccasins as well. If your feet tend to fall in, the arch would definitely help. If you wear on the outside of you feet, arches may just accentuate this even more. If you are flat footed or don't think arches are advantageous, forget them. Others with flat feat swear by them. Orthotic Cushioning is great if you have tender feet or are in need of extra padding, or to help relieve sore feet.