So, I love Clarks shoes but they’re expensive and the last pair I got, the sole completely disintegrated into a powdery cracked hot mess. It was something akin to dry rot – anyhow without a substantial sole structure, the exterior started cracking and the whole experience was a real pisser. So, instead of pitching these and picking up another pair, I replaced the sole interior with 6 bucks worth of clear, fast drying uber-flexible silicone caulking. This is what I did. The tools you’ll need are simple.
1. Clear silicone caulking – I bought DAP for quick drying, extra flexible, non shrinking etc. properties.
4. Caulking gun
5. Folded piece of paper to create a straight “scraping” edge.
1.) Ok, first thing is to dig out all the dry rotted or damaged portions of the sole. Just tear the crap out. Once you’re finished here, take a care to knock out all the little pieces and dusty bits, so you get a good adhesion with the silicone. Once, you’re done, the inside will look something like this.
2.) So with this particular pair, where ever the sole interior failed, the exterior sole cracked. Yanno I wanted these cracks to be solid/water tight so no liquid would get in and continue to erode the sole. I used the super glue to reset and stabilize the cracks like so.
Be thorough here as you really don’t want the cracks to come glued down the road. I glued from both the outside and inside of the sole taking care to make sure good contact thus seal was made with the glue.
3.) So once you have any cracks sealed up, test for flexibility at the crack. This pair of shoes responded well to the super glue and did not buckle or separate from the flex test. The next step was to start filling the sole with the silicone caulking. The process was quite simple. I started with the edges of the sole exterior that had separated from the interior sole and filled them with caulking. Be liberal here. A large tube of caulking has more than enough for a couple pairs of shoes. Also, caulking that leaks out will be used for the sole interior as it gets spread around so no biggie! The key is to make sure you have enough caulking to make a great seal/connection between the interior and exterior sole.
Fill away my Clarks loving friends.
Once all of the separated side wall areas are filled, the next step is to start filling the gaps that were made when tearing out the fatigued dry rotted sole bits. Generously fill the gaps with your silicone. Once filled up, take your folded piece of paper and start smoothing it out. Take care to push down a bit when smoothing as this will release any air bubbles that may be present. Add silicone if and where you think it is needed. The folded paper works well as a spreading tool however another option if you have one is a paint paddle/stirrer. These are cheap, work very well for those inner areas that need a bit more leverage to spread the silicone and can be burnt in the fire pit afterwards.
When the major gaps have been filled, spread a nice even coat over the entire sole interior for added stability. I took the time to fill the majority of the pre formed holes in the sole as well. The caulking says it cures in just a few hours however, I would give the silicone a good 24 hours to finish curing and set. Once they’re set string em up, put the insoles back in and you’re crappy pair of Clarks are good to go with a new lease on life.
Total cost for this repair was around $7.00[US] bucks. Pretty sweet deal if you ask me and a fun Saturday morning project over a tasty fresh brewed cup of coffee.