What is a goodyear construction?

The Goodyear welt process is a machine-based alternative to the traditional hand-welted method for the manufacture of men's shoes, allowing them to be resoled repeatedly.

The upper part of the shoe is shaped over the last and fastened on by sewing a leather, linen or synthetic strip (also known as the "welt") to the inner and upper sole. As well as using a welt, stitching holds the material firmly together.

The welt forms a cavity which is then filled with a cork material. The final part of the shoe is the sole, which is attached to the welt by some combination of stitching and a high strength adhesive like contact cement or hide glue. The result is highly valued for being waterproof by minimizing water penetration into the insole and the relative ease of resoling as long as the upper remains viable.

 

Welted shoes are more expensive to manufacture than those mass produced by automated machinery with molded soles.

[From Wikipedia]

TLDR; They last for a long, long time.

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