One foot at a time | One sole at a time | One hell of a good time


Friday, May 11, 2007

Hemp-Strapped Huarache Sandals

My New Hemp-Strapped Huaraches 3.7 ounces

My latest experiment includes using hemp twine instead of leather on my Vibram-soled huaraches.

I went for a 15 miler yesterday in the hot afternoon LA sun. I took these new huaraches up and down rocky trails and on the road. They handled beautifully.

These sandals bring me one step closer to my ultimate goal for this year's Angeles Crest 100. I want to run the race in a pair of yucca sandals similar to the sandals that the original Los Angelenos wore. Hemp twine is a good temporary substitute for yucca cordage.


PS. I bought my hemp twine at cord at DownBound.com

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Blogger Barefoot Ted said...

I am recently getting back into running. I had success curing plantars fasciitis by walk/running barefoot on grass. Should I purchase a pair of your huaraches or some Five fingers? Due to a childhood accident, my left foot is almost a full size smaller than my right. Is your requested foot tracing weihted or unweighed?

Howdy Jim

My huaraches are still in the experimental stage. I have been improving and experimenting with them continuously for nearly a year.

When they work right, they are better than any other shoe/sandal that I have tried; however, they are not for the faint of heart. FiveFingers are a much better choice if you can get them to fit you well.

As for my huaraches, for one, they are not easy to learn how to tie well. Another problem is that they can become very unmanageable when wet, at least those made with a certain Vibram sole that is smooth on the top.

I have found a cure for the slippery-when-wet problem, but I have not added that feature to the one model that I sell for $40.00, plus $5.00 for shipping.

However, if you want to give them a try, you need to send me an outline of your foot (weighted) along with a mark between your big toe for strap placement.

My latest version also has the side straps coming up just in from of the ankle, so you'd have to mark that too.

Best Regards, BFT

Send to:

Barefoot Ted's Adventures
11001 Peoria St.
Sun Valley, CA 91352

PS. Also, let me know if you'd like leather or hemp straps.

Friday, May 11, 2007

Blogger Josue said...

BFT, I was wondering if you could tell me where you get your vibram rubber. I am also interested in making myself other types of footwear for casual use.
my email is josue.stephensatmac.com.

any info is appreciated, thank you

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Blogger Barefoot Ted said...

Well, to tell the truth I do not have a consitant source for sole material.

My first few batches of material were given to me. At this point, I am not sure what I am going to do when I run out of the material that I now have, but I will cross that bridge when I get to it.

My newest hemp strapped huaraches are VERY good sandals. Hemp is a fantastic material for laces. More later.


Sunday, May 13, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hi Ted,

It's interesting to see the refinements you're making to your huaraches.

I've been wearing mine for about a month now (after following your excellent instructions), and I'm getting used to them. I've found that regular shoe laces are more comfortable than leather for me. The huaraches are great for flats and uphill (so light!), but I still have problems using them downhill because my foot slides forward and the strap digs in between my toes... do you know any way around this?

Best wishes,

Monday, May 14, 2007

Blogger Barefoot Ted said...

Yes, I am familiar with the problem you are having. It took me over a year to figure out how to reduce that problem.

Firstly, you have got to make sure the the footbed of your huarache is a little rough. Using a belt sander, you might want to roughen up the rubber to make it grippier.

Also, tying them on just right is an art.

What is really cool about the hemp is that it get tighter when wet.

I am sure that my feet got tougher over the last year. At first I was prone to getting some rubs in between my toes or on the top of my foot. No longer.

So persistence is key, along with good modifications.


Monday, May 14, 2007

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Thanks for your advice. The rubber I have is reasonably rough, so I guess I need to play around with the tying and also just let my feet toughen up.

You're right about tying them being an art.

It's like: "My heels are coming off the back a bit, so I need to tighten the heel strap.... now my toes are sliding forward, so I need to tighten the front strap... my heels sliding a bit sideways so I need to adjust the ankle strap... okay finally got it right."

It took me a while to realise that you can have the straps quite tight and still be comfortable.

I wonder what the Tarahumarans do about the downhill toe-slide problem? They must have a solution. Or maybe they've just got really tough skin between their toes.

Hemp laces that self-tighten when wet sound great... might have to try it myself.


Tuesday, May 15, 2007


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