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How-to: Fix a Cut in Leather Hiking Boots

One of my leather hiking boots has a cut across the toe box. It is not deep, but it is enough to cause tearing in the leather. Is there a way to close this cut?

Question:

One of my leather hiking boots has a cut across the toe box. It is not deep, but it is enough to cause tearing in the leather. Is there a way to close this cut?

Submitted by - Don - Indianapolis, IN

Answer:

If the cut hasn’t penetrated through the thickness of the leather, you can fix it with a bit of superglue. Just fill the gap and let it cure. Be sure that a bump doesn’t form on the inside of the boot (place your finger on the inside surface of the area to make sure it stays smooth). This trick also works for puncture holes (often sustained by crampon points). Once dry, you can sand it down a little to create a smooth finish.

If the leather has torn all the way through, call in a pro. If the boots are still in good shape, it’s well worth it. Dave Page (davepagecobbler.com) can sew on a leather patch for $25 or less. Be sure to seal it up well using Seam Grip to create the most effective barrier.

For lots of other tips on how to repair and maintain all your gear, check out my new book, The Complete Guide to Outdoor Gear Maintenance and Repair.

2 Comments

  1. timo5150

    Don’t use super glue it hardens and cracks rapidly. Use leather glue or go to a leathercraft site and look up substitutes for leather glue. I know there are some but I only ever use leather glue and do not remember the substitutes. You want a glue that is made for porous materials that will not become brittle and is water resistant. There are a lot of places you can substitute glues in a pinch but with leather you’ll be glad you used the right stuff, especially on something that gets as much abuse as shoes.

    Avatar of timo5150
  2. Cheryl

    I love Shoe Goo ….keep a couple tubes around. Also, I fix a lot of my gear with FLOSS, when it’s something that needs to be sewn. It’s the most durable of all “threads”! Keep the floss handy folks … multiple uses!

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