Posted on February 07 2018
We here at Tingley tend to throw around the phrase “A Revolution in Protective Footwear” a lot. If you think about it, footwear, technology, and the safety industry are constantly revolving and we like to blend the three. We are always looking to create new footwear (or make changes to our existing footwear) that exceeds those current standards of safety and comfort. Below is a list of our 3 (or 4) favorite boots right now…
First and foremost, toes are protected by a composite safety toe that meets the ASTM F2413-11 requirements for toe impact and compression, and Flite is electric hazard (EH) rated. But the real revolution starts with Aerex 1.5.5®, a proprietary microcellular polymer that is self-insulating, chemical-resistant and durable. “Flite follows the ‘1-5-5 Rule’”, said Rob Petersen, Tingley’s Senior Footwear Product Manager, “in that the boots are so lightweight (up to 40% lighter than most steel toe rubber and PVC boots) they are anti-fatigue based on ergonomic studies showing how every 1 lb. reduction in footwear weight is like 5 lb. off your back and 5% less energy expended.”
According to Petersen, “the revolution continues with a fresh look at outsoles and our use of long-lasting, slip-resistant nitrile rubber with tread wear indicators incorporated in the forefoot and heel in both Styles #26256 (Blue) and #27251 (Black).” The purpose of the indicators is to inform users (and plant managers) about the time frame to wear away half the tread. When the Flite tread wears down to the same level as the indicator lines, users will know that they’ve worn away half the tread on their boots.
2. Steplite® X Powered by Bekina®
No strangers to comfortable and safe footwear, Bekina is a Belgium company founded on the principles of sustainable management with a deep respect for people and the environment. Bekina Boots specializes in the development, production and marketing of polyurethane work boots for professional use. This niche market demands quality, durable, safe and comfortable products with an excellent price-quality ratio. “Bekina’s presence in the U.S. market over the past 6 years has allowed us to develop a range of footwear products engineered to meet specific workers’ needs,” said Peter Bauwens, CEO, Bekina Boots.
These polyurethane knee boots are the ideal combination of durability and comfort. 100% liquid proof, high quality, chemical-resistant polyurethane material gives these boots exceptional durability. They are up to 30% lighter than most PVC and rubber steel toe knee boots, yet will last up to three times longer. The steel toe styles (Yellow & White) meet ASTM F2413 M I/75A C/75 for safety footwear (Yellow style is also EH rated). With a full length sock liner, flexible upper shaft and removable, contour insole, these boots deliver serious comfort. You’ll like them so much, we bet you’ll want the plain toe (in Army Green) for everyday work outdoors.
3. Premier G2™
Yes, that G2 does mean it’s a second generation. As previously states we are always looking to make improves in comfort, technology, and safety. “Polyvinyl Chloride (PVC) has been used to make protective footwear for over 50 years and we wanted to take a fresh look at advancements and innovations that we could bring to this line of products,” said Petersen.
Petersen added, “Advancements in material sciences allowed us to incorporate composite safety toes that not only meet or exceed the ASTM F2413-11 requirements for toe impact and compression, but that do not transfer cold like steel toes.” Additional innovations include incorporation of expansion pleats at the top of the boot that relax up to 1.5 inches to accommodate larger calves. Tingley boots have always had cut-lines so that individuals with larger calves could cut down the height of the boots. According to Petersen, “The expansion pleats allow more room for larger calves without affecting the calf fit for everyone else. Everyone gets the benefit of maintaining the full height of these protective boots.”
Other improvements include upgrading the comfort levels of the removable insoles, contemporizing the look of the boots, and incorporating the Tingley Tread Wear Indicators (TWI) in the forefoot and heel areas of the outsoles.
*Honorable Mention… Airgo™
Made of EVA (Ethyl Vinyl Acetate) these boots are 70% lighter (yes- SEVENTY) than other waterproof rubber and PVC knee boots. They offer superior comfort and great durability. The EVA is an excellent cushioning material to help reduce foot stress and leg fatigue. The tiny air bubbles that make the boot so light also provide insulation keeping feet warmer in the cold and cooler in the heat. EVA has great low temperature properties for good flexibility in cold temperatures.
Because of the lack of a safety toe (hence it’s honorable mention on our list) the Airgo is ideal for farm/agriculture, lawn & garden and industrial job applications where waterproof non-safety toe footwear is required but comfort is paramount.