Our product range is specifically engineered to optimise safety, durability and comfort under a wide range of conditions. Naturally the seller or user needs to ensure the correct boot is worn for the particular conditions. Guidance is available from our sales personnel, our website or we would welcome any specific questions directed at us via fax, phone, letter or e-mail.

How do I ensure gumboots are as comfortable as possible?

Comfort and fatigue go hand in hand so careful selection is necessary.

  1. Wear socks or fur liners.
  2. Select a size that is a snug fit.
  3. Select a boot that is as light as possible without sacrificing safety and durability. Correct design will ensure the correct balance between wall thickness, mass distribution and flexibility.
  4. Keep boots clean, especially on the inside.
  5. Shock absorbency in the heel region is also a factor. Good heel design can cater to an extent but new technology whereby a micro-cellular layer midsole or heel pad is moulded into the boot provides the best result.
  6. A contour-moulded cushion insole is also a great help.

What is nitrile and what is its relevance?

Nitrile is a rubber compound that is fat, oil, solvent and chemical resistant and is formulated to blend satisfactorily with PVC. This imparts the similar resistant characteristics to the PVC/Nitrile compound. The higher the nitrile portion in the compound the more impervious to oils, etc. However, there is a trade-off against abrasion resistance so the blending needs to be carefully balanced.

Which specifications are important in my application?

Broadly, the international trend is to align specifications. The differences between the various international specifying authorities is minimal. Further, the specifications are theoretical by nature in that they relate to controlled laboratory conditions and, therefore should be used as a guideline only. In reality working conditions are infinitely variable and tests should be conducted in the specific areas where the boots are to be used. The exception to this is in terms of steel toe caps and penetration resistant midsoles which are designed to provide specific and adequate protection.

Does the colour of the PVC make any difference?

The colour makes no difference at all. Certain applications are colour-coded according to convention or colour preference. What matters is the materials used to make the boot.

What is the purpose of a lining material inside the boot?

Firstly, the liner makes it easier to remove the boot from the mould as it slides off the last.
Secondly, it provides some stability to PVC material.
Thirdly, the type of liner used affects foot hygiene rather than comfort. The aspects affecting comfort are dealt with above.
Wayne uses a finely knitted nylon liner as this makes it easy to wash the boot inside and to facilitate drying. Fluffy or brushed nylon liners do not absorb sufficient sweat nor do they provide comfort. They do, however, retain moisture, dirt and bacteria, are more difficult to wash and take much longer to dry. Never, wear a boot that is wet or damp inside; the damp and retained bacteria are bad for foot hygiene!

While a steel toe cap will protect the toe area what about higher up on the foot?

An optional extra in the form of a metatarsal protector is available. However, no safety feature should replace provision of safe working conditions and good working habits.

Why are boots distorted when a carton is unpacked?

With the handling of the carton the boots shift around inside and tend to compact into the gaps between boots. Thus, they can take on some odd shapes. Once unpacked and given a little time the shape memory of the boot returns it to its original form. A different packing system can be applied to minimise this but is a more expensive alternative. Generally, customers do not want to incur the additional packing and transport cost so we generally advise them to unpack the boots and give them a chance to “recover”.

How long is a PVC gumboot designed to last?

It’s the old story, “How long is a piece of string?”
An interesting guideline is the experience gained in deep level mining where boots are subjected to the worst possible conditions for up to 12 hours per day. The mines require a shift life of 90 shifts (about 3 months). In general our boots do better than that, especially when they have been properly cared for and not subjected to physical damage or high concentrations of chemicals, solvents or oils.

What is the size range?

Size 3-13 depending on the style.

Which sole design is best suited for slip resistance?

Working conditions play a big part here. For example, in mines and on construction sites a boot becomes slippery when the tread pattern becomes clogged with debris. To reduce tread clogging the raised tread pattern is tapered toward the top and curved where it meets the sole base. As the boot flexes it will release the soil. In clay conditions the user should continuously clear the tread.
On smooth slippery surfaces where water or lubricants may be present our sole designs cope admirably until the soles wears down. The smoother the sole the more subject to slipping it becomes. The solution in such environments is good housekeeping and due care by the wearer. In extreme cases gumboots should be replaced with boots with studs and even then precautions are essential. In normal conditions slip should not be a problem.

Are Wayne’s boots suitable for veld or forest fire conditions?

PVC boots are not suitable for such conditions and users who need to work in such conditions need to investigate sources in the areas for more specialised footwear, possibly of the type used by firemen. Your local fire department should be able to assist in this regard.

Why are there so many colour variants?

Firstly individual customer or country preferences.
Secondly, with boots of identical specification some users choose to colour code according to department or type of usage.