I remember a long time ago I promised to make this tutorial ..
I broke these on a simple walk out one day.
It’s why I harvest parts and make new ones. I hope to turn over all the UGLY vinyl over the next two years into sexy hot and earth friendly materials. Hemp speaks to me…it says… “Make a pair of ballet heel uppers out of meeeeee” and I’m listening. (NO, not funny brownies )
1 x broken ballet heel
A power drill with a bit suited to the screws you will be using.
4 x 15mm long screws
4 x 25mm long screws
Flat head screwdriver - slim sharp point works the best
Grips or pliers
Awl (just incase the spike doesn’t manoeuvre out easily]
Contact grip – Quick Grip, Tarzan‘s grip.
Eucalyptus oil or similar for glue clean up if necessary.
I use simple hand tools for all my work. None of them are particularly expensive. A bad tradesman blames his tools, don’cha know? :-P
If you’re unsure about using a power drill, maybe you could ask someone to help you with the repairs? We don’t want you injuring yourself with a slipped drill, oh no. That’s a lot of bark off your finger, or where-ever it ends up drilling into.
WHAT WE ARE REMOVING
I think it helps if you know what you are going to be removing – it’s best to not go in blind as I’ve had to – so I’m sharing my experience so you don’t have to freak out on finding a way of getting them out. It was mentioned to drill into the side of the upper where the plate sits, but from my experience, the promgs often bend and you will hit them with your drill. Also, you will need to fill the holes you have created because you run the risk of destroying the new fixings anchor point. But, again as I always say, find your own way if that suits you best. I’m showing you how I get them out, which leaves as much of the heel cup intact. The upper cardboard can be flattened out. It is rare that the shank will come away from it. Often times the mess under the sole cover left by the manufacturing process means you will need to be a lot more careful in order to maintain integrity of the actual shank and welt. It’s like lucky dip.
These are what is normally used to hold your heel to your shoes with a bit of glue. No wonder they break apart - you might find that the pins have snapped off into your heel portion…you may have to drill them out, or when marking your new placement holes, take into account you have a couple of inches of metal in the way.
It will be found under the inner sole liner. As I have said in the video, you might find screws there instead – one or two or three or five even – as there is little consistency in the manufacture of ballet heels. Also do note the inner sole linger in this pair has not been damaged by pulling it away – this is rare. Normally I have to place a piece of leather or dense spongey material (think cut up gel innersole) before I replace the liner. It possibly came away so easily because the shoe has never been worn.
This shot shows where I’ve marked a line to show you where the metal shank sits in behind the welt. It is IMPERATIVE that you do not drill through this metal. It will kick the drill back for a start. We are using general use drill bits, not tungsten carbide heavy duty drill through steel bits – and you want this shank to have as much integrity as it can.
I have sufficiently banged on in the video about the different types of screws, but you need to use counter-sunk heads. I choose BRASS screws over ALLOY mixes because they are stronger and better. I use a screw with an open thread – meaning there is a larger visible gap between the threads. Closely threaded screws do not grip into the plastic and are about as useful as nails. So, look for general purpose brass counter sunk screws.
Heel guled on, and in position for drying and waiting for the screwing of a lifetime.
The fix is not difficult as you can see from the video. It’s very simple, but takes a bit of planning, and a lot of patience so you don’t damage your shoes.
I DO NOT recommend you use clamps or vices – as you need to manipulate the heels with your hands into the best positions, and this is easier to do if you haven’t pinned down your work piece.
If anyone does this, can you let me know how it went?
Sorry, gotta do it, because I have no idea how skilled you are with your hands.
Please exercise caution when using any hand tools. This is fairly simple work for someone used to using their hands for fine motor skill work.
IF you have never considered yourself skilled with your hands, then I would be honest with myself and have a think about it before I took the task on. With any work like this it is possible for the tools to slip. Keep this in mind. I do not take responsibility for your level of skill or any injury you may incur while following this tutorial. You have to be responsible for yourself.
Hate being harsh…