September 4th, 2006

The Premiere OnLine Magazine for the Fly Fishing Enthusiast.
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Felt Sole Repair
By Grampaflyfish

Replacing or re-gluing felt soles is fairly easy. You'll need a roll of duct tape, newspapers, a small wire brush, coarse sandpaper or a wood rasp, a hammer or mallet and TWO tubes of Barge cement. (One tube will not go quite far enough).

If you are re-gluing the existing felts it's vitally important to get them completely clean. I rinse mine under the kitchen tap until all dirt is removed and the water runs clear. Then tightly stuff as much newspaper into the boots as you possibly can and set them aside for as long as it takes for them to dry COMPLETELY.

When the felts are completely dry, clean all traces of old adhesive from the felts and the sole of your boots with a wire brush. Roughen the sole of the boot (not the felt) with the sandpaper or rasp.

Apply a good even coat of BARGE cement to both surfaces and set them aside. When the adhesive looks dry, apply another even coat of cement to both surfaces and immediately press both surfaces together. Take your hammer and pound the bottom of the felts to get rid of any air pockets. Tightly wrap the boots with multiple layers of duct tape, wrapping from several different angles and keeping plenty of pressure on the soles at all times.

Let the adhesive cure for at least 24 hours before removing the duct tape.

I've had good luck with this method, the trick being the second coat of adhesive. The instructions on the tube of Barge cement call for a single coat, but I the results I got following their directions were never that great. ~ Dick

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