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Red Wing Heritage Iron Ranger 6-Inch Boot, Amber Harness, 10 D(M) US
Size: 10 D(M) US|Color: Amber Harness|Change
Price:$281.23+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on January 16, 2016
I am a recovering Iron Ranger addict.

With any real addiction, they say the first step towards recovery is admitting you have a problem; and so there is mine. My admission, I mean. With that very public and gross claim out of the way ... now maybe I can focus on getting better, maybe I can slowly work towards being able to afford weekly sushi again ... maybe making my car note on time or even the simplest of things like buying toilet paper, all of which have suffered since I became sick with this Iron Ranger s***...

But really, the $$$ involved not withstanding?

These are the best boots *ever* ... these are true God boots, alpha boots, higher order boots, boots of the first cause, boots that shall forever be named ... boots that naturally spew from the moons which elliptically revolve around the planet Jupiter (lo!) ... boots IN SPACE, man!. I'm running out of metaphor and analogy but to put it more simply, in words that anyone with a television or car would most likely understand? The "Most Interesting Man in the World?" .. the dude from the Dos Equis Beer ads? He wears these boots. Religously.

But moving on...

I do not work in my Iron Ranger boots; I do not mine coal or drill for oil or weld under water or dig ditches while wearing my Iron Ranger boots…or anything else the Red Wing Heritage site might pontificate on as the basis for the design of this boot. To the contrary, and although not working in them ... I nonetheless *WORK* them. They are an insanely attractive pair of foot protectors and I get compliments/questions about them all the time.

I obsess on how I might best condition/treat any given style/pair to achieve the maximum amount of power, the most Boot Sorcery(tm) out of them ... I spend many OCD hours on forums such as Dappered Threads and ... conversing with other poor Iron Ranger addicts. And the fact that the Iron Rangers are about as well built as one can ask, that they can be re soled and also conditioned/treated to obtain a gazillion different looks? This just makes them even more addictive...

I've bought three pair of Iron Rangers in the past three months: the first pair, the pair that lit the fuse on all this expensive madness in the first place, was the tried and true Amber Harness ... second pair was the very necessary Black Harness .. and my latest, third pair ... is the super rad, totally unique, Red Wing for Brooks Brothers "Cactus" Brown Iron Rangers ... which just so happen to come fitted with the Vibram lug sole that typically comes stock with the Red Wing Roughneck boots (which any Iron Ranger owner can have re soled on to their regular Iron Rangers if they like; just dial up Red Wing and ask about the process ... it'll cost you about a $100 bucks and will take a month or more).

As far as sizing is concerned? There is much you should consider and if at all possible, try and visit a Red Wing dealer in your town to try on various styles and sizes. But here is my experience:

I had read that going a half size down would be best and so this is what I did. I normally wear a 9.5D US in *everything* ... Asics running shoes, all sorts of work boots, etc ... and so I first ordered a pair of size 9D Iron Rangers. These 9D's fit really comfortably ... no heal lift, nice and snug through the mid foot ... but just too long and bulbous in the "toe-box/forefoot" area ... really, the entire 9D boot fit perfect but there was nearly a full inch of open space between the tip of my big toe and the front of the shoe interior ... I found this created a sort of distorted and peculiar bit of creasing in the forefoot due to all the vacant space in the very front of the shoe and otherwise presented just a sort of unnatural forefoot outline. So, despite the 9D's feeling otherwise perfect on my foot, I returned them and ordered a full size down (8.5D) ... the 8.5D fit almost *exactly* like the 9D, perhaps ever so slightly more narrow and snug around the mid-foot region but the toe-box/forefoot area was *way* more appropriate, with only a ¼" or so of vacant space between my big toe and the front of the shoe interior (see pics). When walking, the crease that naturally forms where one's forefoot naturally bends, has ended up being way less pronounced and way more "natural" looking than the big bulbous toed look of the slightly longish 9D's... ... and so the 8.5D's ... again, a full size down from my normal footwear size, is now my official Iron Ranger size. Among all three pair that I own, I have found little to no inconsistency in this fitting...

And despite the fact that the full size down 8.5D's were a tad snug, they nonetheless have stretched/loosened up quite dramatically with a few weeks use ... and now all of my 8.5D Iron Rangers fit like fine Italian gloves ... no excessive or unnatural wrinkling effects, no overtly bulbous looking toe boxes, not a hint of discomfort ... really, it's a joy to slip them on each day and to be honest? I could run a half marathon in these things and still have energy for an interview post race ... my only problem (and this truly vexes me) is trying to decide which of the three pair I will wear on any given day and what other clothing I will then chose to wear them with. (Truly a horrible affliction, this...) ...


Also, a little tip for those choosing to go a full size down and if you find things a bit uncomfortable at first: hang in there ... really, the leather stretches dramatically over time. Further, if you find the tops of your toes/forefoot being sort of "bitten" by the leather as it creases when you walk, just disregard this because it will go away with time and as the leather softens. I had this exact problem with my Black Harness Iron Rangers when they were brand spanking new ... when I would bend my forefoot while walking, the leather would crease and push down on the tops of my toes ... it was damn uncomfortable ... but with a generous treatment of Red Wing Mink Oil Paste and a few days walking around town ... the discomfort has disappeared completely.

So God Boots(tm) for sure … I look forward to putting them on every day.

Yours in clinical OCD,

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3737 comments| 284 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Report abuse
on July 25, 2016
I was reluctant to invest in these boots for a few reasons. (1) I had tried red wing's moc toe 3 times before to no avail whatsoever- I had tried 3 sizes and still had far too much heel slippage. (2) Others' reviews told tales of treacherous break-in periods, and I wasn't quite sure if I was up for that. (3) They're pretty darn pricey.

(Copper rough & tough on foot and on left in pictures)
I went ahead and purchased 2 colors (harness and rough & tough) because I couldn't tell which I liked better on my computer screen. Both arrived 2 days later. I tried both on and knew immediately which ones I'd be keeping. While the Harness have a more clean cut and polished look, the hide used for the uppers is WAY stiffer out of the box. I have no idea why that is, because redwing clearly states that all of their heritage boots are made of the same hide material and just tanned differently in-house. After wearing them for a full day, I have to say that I do not agree with others' reviews saying that break in has to be painful- at least not in the copper rough and tough color. I could see how the harness color could be a bit harder to break in. But, honestly, these were a joy to wear right out of the box for me, personally. I also think that the copper rough and tough color will have a better looking petina with time. Please note that I did apply Chelsea Leather Food to my boots just before snapping these photos, so the coloration is a bit darker than they were when I first got them.

I went with a 9.5 knowing that that was the closest I'd gotten to a good fit in the RW moc. The fit was spot on. I typically wear a 10-11 depending on the brand. <10 in Cole Haan> <11 in Nike> <10.5 in adidas> <11 in Asics> <11 in Brooks>. So, this was about a full size down from my average shoe size. The heel cup does a phenominal job of keeping my heels from slipping and I have a comfortable amount of wiggle room in the toe box.

These things are tough. I have NEVER seen a shoe so well constructed in my life. Everything about it says "I'm built to last." The leather is the nicest leather I've ever seen used on a workboot. It's strong, sturdy, and just pliable enough to mold to your foot perfectly with time.

Whether you're looking for a high quality pair of boots to wear on the job or a tribute to traditional American craftsmanship to wear with jeans on the weekend, look no further. Trust me, I did my research (probably too much) before deciding to go with these. If you can find a store near you to try them on before ordering, I strongly recommend you do that. If you're not able to, then just go into this knowing that you might have to exchange them a few times before you find the right size. And remember not to get discouraged if you can't get these particular boots to work for you size-wise. Try out some of Red Wing's other boots- I've obviously found all of them to have a unique fit.

Hope this helped! All the best.
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on August 12, 2016
These boots will last years, if not decades. I beat the crap out of these boots regularly and they get super dried and scuffed. Take a thin layer of mink oil to them, and they look brand new.

IT IS IMPORTANT, that you try to find a local store and try these on. I normally wear a 12 in any shoes, and an 11.5 in dress shoes. These boots I had to get in an 11. I have heard it recommended that you buy 1 half size below your dress shoe size, I agree. I have also heard, that it may be wise to order two pairs, and which ever fits, return the other (I know, who has the money.) If you get them too big, once the leather stretches, they will feel sloppy, and you will be stuck with them. And very disappointed.

Finally, the break in period is ROUGH. It takes about a week of constant wear and movement to get them comfortable enough to not be crying all day. About two weeks to really forget you're wearing them. And about a month for them to become as soft as socks. Every day after that, you will be so happy to put on your boots every day, and you will walk with a smile.

MINK OIL, I do recommend oiling your boots, but if you are just going to wear them to look fancy with your cuffed raw denim jeans, maybe the oil isn't for you. Mink oil will darken the boots. Especially if you use a lot. Apply a thin layer. But if you continue to wear them, and get them scuffed, they will lighten back up. I don't know how many of you can actually get some work done, but these are work boots. If you abuse them, they will thank you, and look better every day.

In the pictures, you will see in some they are scuffed a little, and some they are oiled.
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on May 31, 2014
I bought these boots as a gift to myself for Christmas. I wanted a boot that I could wear anywhere, anytime, in any situation. Some would say the wolverine 1000 mile can be dressier, and they may, but they are no where near as tough as these.

They have a leather sole, and mold to your foot, do not expect these to be comfortable immediately. People often complain about the break in period, and how stiff the leather is, but its supposed to be! These are tough boots, the leather is very soft, but will need some time to break in. You should wear thicker socks with these, I wear a thin liner and a thick wool sock. I never once had issues with comfort. The boots molded to my feet within weeks. Ive put a couple hundred miles on these hiking upstate NY, walking NYC, Boston, and most of the North East spots. I wore these through a north east winter, spring, and am now starting on summer. They still feel great.

Sizing: I'm an 11 in nike, 10.5 in nearly all else. I have wide feet and size up to make shoes fit. I wear a 9 EE in these, and they are a little snug, but after a few months the leather has stretched to fit my wide feet. A rule of thumb would be to wear half a size down.

Be careful of the toe box, the leather is quite soft and can scratch easy. These look better with age, but if you brush them often they will stay looking new.

I would NOT oil these too much, as it will over soften the leather, and make them very very dark. Oil every couple months, brush off mud and dirt, and use cedar shoe inserts. These will last a lifetime.

**UPDATE** 07DEC15

After nearly two years of wear, travel around the world, and over 1000 miles of walking/hiking, probably closer to 2000, these boots are still phenomenal. The sole has completely molded to my foot, I can wear with thin socks and not tear my feet up. I still recommend wearing thick socks. These boots have been across Europe, Asia, and the USA. Seen rain, snow, and all other forms of weather. I've worn out Jeans, and shirts, and these bad boys have lasted.

I recommend regular cleaning, not oiling too much, they get ridiculously dark. Had I known how dark they would get I would have bought the other style of brown. These are NOT waterproof, but with oiling they get water resistant. I HIGHLY recommend using wood boot tree especially after getting wet. Check the new photos for how they wear
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on April 12, 2017
I just received these and although there appear to be some very minor defects, it's tough to say if they are from the factory or results of the free returns offered by Amazon. The leather was creased at the seam of the toe cap on one boot and there was an indent and a stain near the toe of the boot as well. Personally, this is not a problem for me as these boots are made to be used and will only get better with wear. However, it is possible to get factory seconds at a better price with similar issues at times but I guess you never really know what you will get with seconds. Aside from that, the overall build quality is great. These boots are clearly designed to be used heavily and last a long time if cared for correctly.

I usually wear a size 11 in most footwear but had to size down to a 10 for these. I would recommend trying some on at a Red Wing store if possible or purchasing from a seller offering free returns just to be safe.
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on August 4, 2017
I ordered and received the RW Iron Ranger Boots (in black harness) this week, after reading so many great comments about them. I was immediately disappointed to find that the left boot was missing all of the speed hooks. I mean all of them. RW used to pride themselves on delivering a quality product. Not sure what happened on the QC line the day this pair was built. How can you miss something like that? The boot even had laces in it, and the person responsible for lacing the boot didn't notice that all of the speed hooks were missing? Seriously? Wow.

I also began to wonder if Amazon is selling RW's irregulars, even though they are not advertised as such. They were $80 cheaper than in the RW retail stores, but at $240, that's still an expensive boot. If they are irregulars, then shame on Amazon for pushing them without full disclosure.

Now, as for fit, I did lace-up the right boot (which had all the parts) and the fit was spot-on. I wear a 9-D in most boots, Lucchese ropers for example, but ordered these a half size down to 8.5 based on the other reviews. The fit was great, and the black harness leather was beautiful. Hence my disappointment. I wanted to start wearing them right away.

But I believe in second chances, so I'm returning them today and getting a replacement pair. We'll see. The soles may be missing from them.

Giving 2-stars for now. I'll update my review once I have the second pair.

Update 8/11/17: I received the replacement pair yesterday and the boots were perfect. Size, fit, and quality of construction were all what I've come to expect from Red Wing. These boots are worth the money.

Giving 5 Stars.
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on April 18, 2017
Let me say I carefully researched this boot for some time! This is by far the most expensive shoe I have ever bought. I was nervous about the size and fit. I wear size 12 in nike air, size 11 in vans old skool, and size 10 in clarks desert treks and clarks wallabees. I ended up purchasing these iron rangers in size 10D. They fit perfectly, and I am glad I did not buy 10E (wide). The boots will be slightly tight at first, but as long as you can wiggle your toes in the toe box the boots will stretch out just fine. I will say these boots are going to make you work for it though! The first week is going to be tough on the feet! My shins especially hurt because I normally wear sneakers. After about a week it is totally tolerable. It's a tough week though. I have been wearing my 8111 iron rangers daily for about a month now, and only in the last few days would I say they feel great. I was torn between the 8111 and 8085 iron rangers because of the smooth cork sole that the 8111 comes with. Ultimately I gave them a shot but found that the redwing heel was marking the epoxy concrete floor at my work. I called redwing about it and was told they don't have enough real world testing results to know if their heels mark or not. Strange for a company that has been making the same boot for 100 years. I got a great price on the 8111 through Amazon and decided to put a 430 vibrum mini lug sole on them through a local shoe repair man. He charged my $50 total for the whole job on both boots. So in the end I am rocking 8111's with a custom vibrum 430 mini lug sole. Feel great. Look awesome. Get tons of complements on them. Will probably buy more in the future, but will avoid the smooth sole, because it's just not for me. The 430 sole appears flat but has tread. Works well.
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on October 9, 2017
I had been looking for some comfortable daily wear boots, I think I've found them. First off, like my lineman's, order a half size down, as the leather and footbed will stretch and form to your foot, just like that baseball glove you broke in as a kid. The leather on these boots is quite thick and takes about 3 weeks of wear to break in, but a little leather conditioner and daily wear ensures that "baseball glove" feel.

For the price, I doubt you will find a boot as well built or as comfortable (once worn for a while) as the iron ranger. They have an old jump boot look, look great with jeans and dress pants (not suitable for a suit) and shine up with ease. The slick-bottoms on these boots have yet to cause any slipping or sliding, but I have yet to wear them in the snow, but they do have an added benefit of never having to clean mud, animal poo, or other mashable material out of treads - just scrape them off and keep going about your day.

The only problem I can see in the near future is the laces breaking. This is the same material on my Red Wing lineman's, which promptly broke in about 3 months, good news though: paracord works in a pinch and seems to last longer.

Pros: comfort, style, quality materials, easy to repair and resole later on

Cons: laces will break on you, long break-in period, initial cost (if you've only bought boots from chain stores like Walmart or Meijer in the past)

Overall: Buy these boots in whatever color suits you, and once you've broken them in, you won't wear anything else.
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on July 20, 2017
I bought the Amber Harness Iron Rangers a few months ago -- and think I've finally found the right size. Usually a 9.5 M in a dress shoe ... these were properly fitted to me in an 8.5 M in a Red Wing store. (I couldn't believe it ... but that's how they ran). Also have a pair of Blacksmiths that were improperly sized on me at a 9.0 M last year (the same "last" as IR) yet with the leather stretching, they have become roomier -- and they now have an added insole. I absolutely love the Iron Rangers model - and wish I'd gone that route, first. When I recently saw the Iron Ranger Muleskinners on sale in my proper size (at a 34% savings), I had to pounce. They fit snug and comfortable - and the construction, stitching and leather are awesome (as with any Red Wing I've seen). Wow. Unlike other folks, I don't have major break-in issues with pain, so I've already worn the Mules 3x this week (they arrived 5 days ago). I expect both pairs will last "forever" - then I'll give to my son if they fit him.

UPDATE Nov. 29, 2017

Continue to love. These and the 8111 boots just get better and better. Extremely important you get the right size. Try on in store if you can. These are 1 full size smaller than normal boots / dress shoes I own ... and they've formed to my foot and fit like an absolute glove.
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on July 11, 2017

The boots look very well built. There is no failure in seams, the leather finished, sole or the boot in general. The shoe looks durable and has a Goodyear welt sole, it can replaced without problem by a cobbler


According to others comments, work boots tend to run large, so the recommendation is buy half or a full size down than what you usually wear in sports shoes. My feet measure 26.6cm in average and normally wear 8.5 in Reebok Nano 4.0 or Adidas Samba. In the Red Wings official site they have the sizes table and the centimeters to which they correspond. (Size 8 = 26cm)

Break in period: During the first two days, I wear it during just a couple of hours, to mold the shoe to my feet and not to mistreat my foot when it was a use all day on first time. After that, the boots felt great, they do not feel tight or did painful spot anywhere on my foot. The Iron Rangers have plenty of toe room, as the manufacturer describes on their web site.

The Red Wing Iron Ranger boots look great, the materials witch they are constructed have great quality and manufacture as well. The size 8 in the Red Wing Iron Ranger for my foot is ok, I can move my toes inside the shoe freely, the boot bend in the widest part of the sole and “break in period” was not as terrible as other people comment. A recommendation, wear thick socks with work boots, to give a better fit.

I only have one week and a half wearing this boots, I hope to be able to further expand this analysis of the Red Wing Iron Ranger.

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