For the most part, a shoe last is simply a mold about which shoes can be assembled. The trick though is getting the shoe last out of the shoe afterwards. Unlike feet, shoe lasts are solid and don’t flex. Hence some kind of joint is required to change the shape of the shoe last.
There are a variety of solutions out there, like the telescopic joint, the v-cut hinge, and even a simple scoop cut that can be removed. These all work. But they also tend to be difficult to manage without causing at least some damage to the shoe.
The patent pending alternative we came up with is the shoe last rail joint. The back of the shoe last slides forward and up along a guide rail, essentially shortening and simultaneously removing the shoe last from the shoe. A screw and nut combination gradually and smoothly deliver the mechanical force. It can be operated by any common cordless drill or even just a simple Allen key (comes with shoe lasts).
Our shoe lasts are also the first commercial shoe lasts to be made by 3D printing. This technology makes the complex geometries required for the rail joint possible to manufacture. Furthermore, 3D printing leads to a highly automated manufacturing system that allows us to keep costs down and produce locally and on-demand, which is great for shoe last customization. As far as materials, we use a special blend of the same material most commonly used for shoe lasts, polyethylene. And all fasteners are metal to limit wear and tear. Our shoe lasts have proven to hold up against the high pressure of sole presses and resist heat well.
Our shoe lasts will give your traditional shoe craftsmanship a modern edge. Visit shoe lasts for sale to see our full collection.