How shoe cutting dies are made
Mass production of footwear requires cutting every type of shoe material. Shoe leather, fabric, foam, and reinforcing materials must all be cut into the shoe pattern shapes. While there are many new technologies for cutting shoe materials such as laser, water jet, and CNC drag knife; the steel rule cutting die is still the most common.
Shoe parts cutting dies
Used to cut out shoe parts, these steel cutting dies look just like cookie cutters. Each die is made of sharpened rule steel then coated with rust proof paint and marked with the shoe size and model number. Making a shoe requires hundreds of dies. One die for each part, for every size of a shoe. For high volume shoe production the shoe factory may need many sets of cutting dies.
Making a shoe cutting die
The cutting die maker starts with the cut paper pattern templates of the shoe pattern. The worker will then bend the rule steel into shape using the paper pattern as a guide. The worker uses a special bench that will help bend the metal. The bench has a foot-operated anvil that moves the tool head to make the bends. A skilled worker can make each cutting die outline in just a few minutes.
Once the outline is made, the worker will add the shoe size marks to the edge with notches. The raw ends of the dies are then welded together. Afterwards, any bracing bars or plates are welded on. Pins for perforations are also added to the cutting dies. Once the die is fully assembled a worker will test it to make sure the cutting surface is aligned flat and level.
The final operations to make the shoe cutting dies include coating it with rust proof paint and a final check to make sure the cutting edge is very sharp. While there are many operations required to make shoes cuttings dies the production is fast, the materials and labor are relatively inexpensive. For small orders a cutting die fee may be charged by the shoe factory, but usually the cost of the cutting dies are accounted for the LOP (labor, overhead and profit) charges.
Tour a shoe cutting die factory in China
Learn more about making shoes:Do you want to learn how big brands make shoes? Now you can! How Shoes are Made will show you how modern shoes come to life! More than just a tour through a sneaker factory and more than your average shoe making book! From drawing shoe designs to sample development and footwear manufacturing, you will learn how it is all done. Written by veteran shoemaking pros, How Shoes are Made will give you a look inside the REAL world of shoe design, development, and mass production. 220 pages with over 400 color photos and drawings. 26 chapters explaining shoe design, footwear pattern making, sample development, footwear materials selection, upper stitching, outsole and tooling design, shoe lasts, shoe costing, quality inspections, starting you own shoe brand, and much more! A must read for young shoe designers, sneaker heads, or any footwear fanatic! Over 2500 copies sold! Read in 60 Countries! See Preview Video On YouTube
Print Edition Now Available!
Table of Contents:The Design Process, Shoe Development, Shoe Patterns, Shoe Specifications, Outsole Tooling, Development Process, Pre-Production, Material Preparation, Stitching Operations, Rubber Pressing, EVA Forming, The Assembly Line, The Shoe Last, Footwear Costing, Importing Shoes, Shoe Logo Design, Leather for Shoes, Textiles for Shoes ,Synthetics for Shoes, Foam for Shoes, Know Your Footbeds, Material Suppliers, Shoe Designers Tools, Jobs in the Shoe Trade ,Quality Control, Starting a Shoe Company, Life at a Shoe Factory, Shoe Making Dictionary
If you want to learn more, check out our new books.
Print Editions and Instant Downloads Available Now!
E-Book edition 170 pages. PC and Mac compatible PDF file. Download Now!
E-Book edition 220 pages. PC and Mac compatible PDF file. Download Now!
Now enjoy the double download of two Sneaker Factory books.
Print Edition, 220 pages with over 400 color photos and drawings.
Print Edition, 250 Pages with over 400 color photos and drawings.
A must have for anyone serious about launching a new footwear company!
E-Book edition 170 pages. Profit margin and Size run calculators. Download Now!
Download Edition + Paper Pattern + Blue Prints and Spec sheets
Start-up Pack is all you need to get your own shoe business started.
Print Edition + Paper Pattern + Blue Prints and Spec sheets
A complete technical specification, drawings, blueprint, pattern and spec.
Computer cut shoe pattern for a classic jogger. Factory Blue Print included.
Entire pattern size run for the Arris classic trainer, Men’s US 7-13 (Euro 39-47)
24 inch tape specifically designed for measuring shoe lasts.
Ready to Print! Men's size 9 last. The .STL file can be scaled in X, Y and Z.
Great for checking leathers and synthetic materials. Features adjustable dial.