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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 01:57am
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Plate Shoes

Hey guys,
Im lookin for some reccommendations on plate shoes... not lookin to spend a bunch, but lookin for a quality pair that i can get relatively cheap.
thanks
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 08:55am
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Many threads on this subject. Search.

General options include:

New Balance
Honigs
Tanel
Gerry Davis
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 09:03am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swkansasref33 View Post
...lookin for a quality pair that i can get relatively cheap.
If you're buying new, "quality" and "cheap" are generally mutually exclusive when it comes to equipment. "Cheap" plate shoes often have a plastic toe box (look for words like "composite" or "molded thermoplastic") and don't offer enough protection if you take one directly on the toe. I would not wear a pair of plate shoes with a composite toe box unless they meet some sort of industrial standard such as I/C75 and most cheap shoes don't.

You can expect to spend at least $90 for a quality plate shoe. Purchase Officials Supplies has the the New Balance plate shoe on sale for $94 and I've seen it as low as $90. You can find the Tanel360 for less than $100 if you search for it. Both are good quality shoes.

When it comes to protective equipment, you get what you pay for. Spend the money and buy quality the first time. It's cheaper in the long run.
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 10:02am
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Save up a little longer, and buy pro gear. You'll never regret it.

The New Balance 450 is light, comfortable and offers great protection. I've purchased these for several guys who work for me, and they all agree that they're the best. Buy them a half size larger than normal, trust me.




Some good reasons to buy pro gear. One, it will out last the cheap stuff. It will protect you better. If you decide you don't like umpiring, you can sell top grade stuff on eBay and get most of your money back. Plus, if you find you like umpiring, you'll want to replace your cheap stuff with pro gear after one year anyway. Your cheap gear will be a waste of money.

A favorite motto of mine is "you never regret buying the best".

Last edited by kylejt; Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 10:42am.
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 10:13am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swkansasref33 View Post
Hey guys,
Im lookin for some reccommendations on plate shoes... not lookin to spend a bunch, but lookin for a quality pair that i can get relatively cheap.
thanks
Quality shoes cost money. I bought my Gerry Davis Hi-Tops 15 years ago for $125. They are still my only plate shoes today (with a few minor repairs to the stiching).

Do not go cheap (as others have advised) because you will pay for it with pain and loss of wages on your job. Many umpires seem to like the New Balance brand now so look at those. I saw someone mention Tanel, stay away from those! About a dozen of our new recrutes bought Tanel from a visiting Honig dealer a couple of years back. Not one pair lasted the HS season (about 3 months here in CT)! They went to either Gerry Davis or New Balance and bought real plate shoes and are very happy now.
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 11:20am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ozzy6900 View Post
I saw someone mention Tanel, stay away from those! About a dozen of our new recrutes bought Tanel from a visiting Honig dealer a couple of years back. Not one pair lasted the HS season (about 3 months here in CT)!
Strange, my Tanels are 5 or 6 years old and still going strong. They outlasted the "redesigned" Honigs K90s I purchased about 4 years ago. Perhaps Tanel changed manufacturers.

Santa brought me a pair of Gerry Davis Hi-Tops last Christmas. They are a heavier shoe, but quality all the way. They are now my regular plate shoe.
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 11:25am
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Originally Posted by Delaware Blue View Post
Strange, my Tanels are 5 or 6 years old and still going strong. They outlasted the "redesigned" Honigs K90s I purchased about 4 years ago. Perhaps Tanel changed manufacturers.

Santa brought me a pair of Gerry Davis Hi-Tops last Christmas. They are a heavier shoe, but quality all the way. They are now my regular plate shoe.
I also own a pair of Tanel's that are about 5 years old and they look fantastic. Oz, you guys must have gotten a bad bunch. They are highly recommended!
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 11:43am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kylejt View Post
Save up a little longer, and buy pro gear. You'll never regret it.

The New Balance 450 is light, comfortable and offers great protection. I've purchased these for several guys who work for me, and they all agree that they're the best. Buy them a half size larger than normal, trust me.




Some good reasons to buy pro gear. One, it will out last the cheap stuff. It protect you better. If you decide you don't like umpiring, you can sell top grade stuff on eBay and get most of your money back. Plus, if you find you like umpiring, you'll want to replace your cheap stuff with pro gear after one year anyway. Your cheap gear will be a waste of money.

A favorite motto of mine is "you never regret buying the best".
Listen to this wise man! He speaks the bold, absolute truth on this particular subject as eloquently as any of us ever have.

And as far as plate shoes that are "relatively cheap": I ask, are your feet relatively cheap? Take care of your feet--especially when you're working behind the plate. Games go poorly when your feet are screaming.

To give you an idea how I feel about my feet: I spent $36.00 on insoles and $18.00 on snowboarding socks. I put those over a $10.00 pair of Under Armour thin socks. So I'm $64.00 deep before I pull on the $100.00 NB 450s.

Last edited by Kevin Finnerty; Tue Dec 23, 2008 at 11:48am.
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 02:09pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Delaware Blue View Post
Strange, my Tanels are 5 or 6 years old and still going strong. They outlasted the "redesigned" Honigs K90s I purchased about 4 years ago. Perhaps Tanel changed manufacturers.

Santa brought me a pair of Gerry Davis Hi-Tops last Christmas. They are a heavier shoe, but quality all the way. They are now my regular plate shoe.
your right... I used to be a rep for Tanel and I think these shoes are great. last me 2 full season, and the only reason I got rid of them.. I wanted a high top NB cause I saw them and thought they looked cool...LOL
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 08:09pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by swkansasref33 View Post
Hey guys,
Im lookin for some reccommendations on plate shoes... not lookin to spend a bunch, but lookin for a quality pair that i can get relatively cheap.
Shop around for best price and buy a pair of New Balance 450's. You can get a pair from Honigs for $100 and I have seen them for under $90 in some sites.
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Old Tue Dec 23, 2008, 11:10pm
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Sometimes saving $10.00 isn't worth risking the shipping costs if you need a different size. New Balance and a couple of others offer free or low cost shipping and/or a perfect fit free shipping guarantee. That can be worth a lot.
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Old Wed Dec 24, 2008, 02:48pm
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eBay

If you are just getting started and need to get a lot of equipment on a tight budget, your best bet is used equipment. I've had very good luck on eBay.
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Old Wed Dec 24, 2008, 03:04pm
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Whatever shoe you choose, one of the best things you can do for yourself is to remove the insert and install a cushioned insert. You're feet will thank you at the end of that double header day.

BTW I use the NB Plate and Base shoes.
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Last edited by Forest Ump; Wed Dec 24, 2008 at 03:07pm.
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Old Wed Dec 24, 2008, 04:17pm
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I have a pair of Tanel's. Love them, eight years old; the heel has finally broken down, need a new pair. Will probably go Tanel, although I am intrigued by the Reebok's. I have a pair of NB's, very nice but low cut is for me.
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Old Wed Dec 24, 2008, 06:10pm
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Wear Combo Plate/Base Shoes

Quote:
Originally Posted by swkansasref33 View Post
Hey guys,
Im lookin for some reccommendations on plate shoes... not lookin to spend a bunch, but lookin for a quality pair that i can get relatively cheap.
thanks
As comfortable as any plate umpire shoes can be, cheaper and more flexible.
Buy steel toe oxfords or tennis shoes and add padded throat guards over the laces.
Can be worn on and off the field for added value.

The following link is a steel toe shoe made by a company owned by New Balance.
Amazon.com: Men's Dunham® Steel Toe Athletics Black: Shoes

All black throat guards, similar to one of these.
Riddell Goalie Throat Protector : Target
Diamond Baseball Umpires 6" & 4" Throat Guards FM (RMP) - Baseball Equipment and Gear

Edited to add: The steel toe shoes alone with metatarsal protection from quality leg guards would be acceptable.
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Last edited by SAump; Thu Dec 25, 2008 at 04:24pm.
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