Vans is capitalizing on both the success of Propeller and the #ReturnOfTheRubberToe with the 112, the newest addition to their pro line. Designers took the classic Vans silhouette (it took my friends days to realize I wasn’t wearing a pair of the Gibert Crocketts) and added a small half moon rubber toecap between the existing sole and the suede on the toe.
Thanks to the location of the rubber toe, you hardly notice it’s there. From skating them, I can tell you that you’ll have to do a lot of kickflips in order to wear through the entire sole before ever utilizing the toecap. The sidewall is comprised of canvas near the heel and suede at the ollie area, with a suede toe (again, aesthetically similar to the Gilbert Crockett model). The canvas doesn’t end when it meets the suede; rather, the suede is placed over it, providing twice the sock protection. This shouldn’t be an issue, because the suede is fantastic — it hardly bruised or faded after 10 hours of skating, and the stitches located near the ollie area didn’t fray at all.
- Vulcanized construction on a Vans Waffle Outsole
- Break-in right out of the box
- Sole takes longer to wear away than usual
- Half moon rubber toe for added durability
- Vans Ultracush HD Insole for impact protection and comfort
The extreme sidewall protection comes at a cost, as the 112’s aren’t the most ventilation-friendly shoe, but such is the cost for a more durable sidewall. Vans also upgraded the pro sole to last longer, but hardcore fans of the brand may notice there’s a catch: the sole isn’t as soft as in years past and, thus, not as grippy. It’s a fair tradeoff for the increased durability, though — we still had plenty of traction, tread, and flick after several weeks.