I have a couple other Instructables published, but I am really excited about getting this little one out there as it has information I haven’t seen elsewhere. It is a brief instruction on my version of making tire sandals or survival soles for moccasins, but the important part is how I cut the tire.
Before we get to the cutting, let’s talk about making tire sandals or my take on it anyway. There is a TON of info on making these so I won’t belabor the point here, but just give you a few pointers based on my experience. I have wanted to make some tire sandals for some time, just to see if it was possible to do in a survival type situation. I finally have the time now and decided to give it a go. These sandals are not too comfortable to wear barefoot, but they work great with mocs or heavy socks. Together with good moccasins, they make good outdoor footwear. The tough soles making hiking easy on your feet and when you get to camp you can take off your mocs to dry them and your feet out and wear your sandals while you set up. You can also wear mocs alone to be really comfortable while poking at the fire or sleeping.
First, forget about using steel belted tires. Just don’t try it. They are HARD to cut no matter how you do it and it is dangerous with tiny bits of steel flying around your face and eyes. Not to mention that eventually you will get a sliver of steel in your finger or foot. If you have ever gotten steel in your finger, you know how aggravating that is.
There are plenty of nylon belted tires you can use. The most common source is the little donut spare tires in newer cars. These are the ones marked ‘Temporary Use Only and Don’t drive over 45 miles per hour.’ The reason being, they are not steel belted. You can get these at the junkyard or just steal one out of your neighbor’s car when they are unloading groceries. Other tires you can use are lawnmower tires or ATV tires. Be sure to have them unmount the tire if it is on a wheel.