Lengthening toe pockets

Has anyone tried to lengthen a toe pocket before? My lilac pair of Classics has one toe that bothers me, the left pinky toe, because it is too short.

I read a post on a forum somewhere from a guy who had a similar problem. He lengthened the second toe of his VFFs (a common problem) by heating a clothes iron to its maximum setting, laying a piece of aluminum foil over it, using some sort of tool (I think he used the handle end of a small screwdriver) to stretch out the toe pocket rubber, laying the toe pocket on the iron and aluminum and stretching the rubber with the tool, and rapid cooling the rubber by placing the shoe in ice cold water.

Any thoughts? Think it would work? Think it would wreck the shoe?


  • Hello Tina

    Not tried this so no idea. I would imagine you have to keep the tool in place while the shoe was submerged in the water.

    Also imagine could be tricky as to gauge how much lengthening is required/achieved in the process.

    Best of luck if you try.

    Personally i could do with shortening the right big toe pocket. Do not think this is possible, but happy to be proven wrong.

    Jason counting down to hols
  • I saw this post too (For reference: http://groups.google.com/group/huaraches/msg/324d85d61b3bb9b8 ).

    It might be worth a try -- I have the opposite problem.  My little toe pockets are too large by far.  It's not really annoying as my pinky toe is less involved in my foot endeavors, but it might be nice if it fit better.

    Seems like the limiting factor in toe pocket extension will be the fabric since that is unstretchable.
  • Thanks for the reference, Justin, I couldn't remember where it was.

    My spouse has the same problem with his pinky toes in his VFFS. He says it doesn't really bother him in the shoes he has. He has the KSOs. He found that he didn't like any of the other styles for this reason, though.
  • I would assume that this idea would work as it seems tried and true but I'd say proceed with caution - you don't want to end up setting your VFFs on fire!!

  • My only concern would be degrading the rubber compound. I would assume the soles are a urethane rubber and probably have a very small envelope of permanent stretchability.

    Too hot and you just might actually melt/separate out some components from the rubber.

    Anyway, I have to wonder if perhaps a hairdryer on high or a judiciously used heat gun (the type for removing paint) would give you a more consistent coverage of heat.
  • I suffer from chronic foot pain, due to Plantar Fasciitis. At times, it keeps me from being as active as I would like. My family was planning a hiking trip up Mt. LeConte in memory of my father & I was determined to to go. The Orthofeet shoes worked great! I would recommend them to anyone with foot pain. We love them. The way they are constructed really eliminates heel pain. So happy to have found them.
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