I am a retired carpenter that worked many years outside. Bought first pair of Redwings in 1962. Usually got 2-1/2 / 3 years out of them before they needed new soles and heels. Wore Redwings til I retired 40 years later. First pair cost me two weeks pay.
First year apprentice made $1.38 an hour. Took home about $44.00 if the weather was decent and worked 40 hours. Never regretted buying the best boot made.
Whites made in Spokane.
Re-buildable. I wear a pair daily, they're now 52 years old. You have to accept the fact you're going to have to pay over 500 dollars, but they'll last forever and can be fixed.
I have 2 pair
I have worn Red Wing work boots since I had my first job at a mechanics shop at the age of 14. I buy 3 or 4 pairs of boots a year and never wear a pair 2 days in a row. The boots I order are $219 bucks and the last 2 pair have been clunkers. Just not as comfortable as I am accustomed to. I work on concrete most of the time and walk alot, often carrying around 10 or 15 pounds. What are you guys doing for boots these days?
Work boots.... Many of us use them so I really don't feel this is "off topic"
Here is my issue... Who make good ones IN THE USA?
I wore boots for 10 to 15 years, usually cheap ones, then stepped up to nice ones from Doc Martin a dozen or so years ago. Then I switched to sneakers at my old job for a decade. Out large parts weighed 2 ounces so dropping something posed very little risk to feet.
However, at my new place 3 years ago I tore off a big toenail when a large vise slipped that I was trying to pick up. FORTUNATELY it was already on the floor and only "slid" over my foot...which is what tore my nail off. Needless to say this is when I went back to wearing boots, and now steel toe! That would have saved me months of pain... Hind site!
I have been thru 3 pairs and I need new ones.
I got a pair of Wolverines first. They fell apart and I debated but gave them another chance because I thought they were a "good" brand. I got a second pair...I was wrong! 3 months and they were falling apart too.
I then got a pair of Sketcher steel toe work boots that I have been pretty pleased with until recently. I got a little over a year out of them and they were comfortable the whole time. They just all of a sudden over the course of a week or so came apart at the seams. All of them! Like a solvent had dissolved the threads, but I don't work with nasty solvents.
I went today to buy another pair of the sketchers at the local farm store where I got the last pair, they don't have the Sketcher work line anymore, just the sneakers.
They have plenty of the POS Wolverines. $125 a pair, and made in China! I went to the next isle...John Deere branded boots... Made in China. Next isle, made in China, you get the idea. They had some cowboy style Justin boots that were made in the US, but their "work boots" are made in....China.
Next isle, more Chinese boots. I left without new boots.
ALL OF THEM $80 to $150 a pair and made in China!
Now I don't take the import thing to the extreme, but I want to keep my money close when I can. I will pay another few dollars for US made boots ..... IF I CAN FIND THEM!
New Balance still makes shoes in the US. Have you priced them lately? Comparable with the other "big name" made in china shoes. The only real difference is that the New Balance shoes actually have an arch support for those of us who stand all day, not so for many or the others. That is what got me to switch to NB sneakers a dozen years ago... The arch support.
So, after a long story and rant, who makes GOOD BOOTS IN THE U.S.? I'm simply wanting a short hiker style steel toe boot that is actually comfortable to be in for 12 hrs a day.Also cowboy boots is a decent option if you want something U.S made I guess, but those can be costly for a decent pair... Decent pair of cowboy boots( https://gritroutdoors.com/apparel/western-wear/cowboy-boots/ is like 200-ish bucks, maybe a bit more). And good pair is probably even more than that...
Why is this so tough? It's not exactly a space shuttle launch! Just boots. And I don't want the dang steel guard cutting into the side of MY toes either!
I will give a warning to others here. You should not be trying to where logger style or high heel boots like Whites, Hoffmans, or others no matter the quality on concrete all day long. Plus with steel shanks and steel toe they weigh a ton. I buy American and went with Thorogoods steel toe 6" white sole over Danners or Red Wings. Super comfortable! Sizing will be different then your Asian counterparts fyi.
Over the past 45 years I've worn multiple pairs of Danners, Red Wings, Caterpillar, Carhart, Justin, Sears, Georgia Boot and Keen work boots (and probably a few others that I've forgotten).
Currently I'm wearing USA mfg Keens. I live on a farm with a sawmill operation and wear boots for 7 days a week, usually 12 hours at a time. I keep two pair active. Each evening when I take of the pair that I'm wearing they go onto a Peet boot dryer, and last night's pair is removed and staged to wear tomorrow.
I've found that the Keen's fit my feet the best, are comfortable on concrete and have safety toe's available. Usually I'm getting 3 - 4 years from a pair (alternating daily).
Some of the other brands were too tight across the back of my toes, and were causing problems with my feet. The Keens solved that. I'm currently wearing their 8" Dover boot with carbon fiber toe.