Step 2: Heel removal
I started by removing the small plastic heel cap with pliers, then bisected the decorative leather sole at the heel and removed the sole portion that was glued to the heel. Tsaking care not to damage the faux crocodile skin on the heel, the skin was peeled back and removed. Set aside this scrap of crocdile skin for later as we'll be using it in Step 6 to cover the underside of the shoe where the old heel used to be.
The heel of these shoes were held on with a large industrial cleat that mechanically fastened the heel to the sole and adhesive. The cleat was attached from the top of the shoe under the insole through the sole and embedded deep in the plastic heel. It was no small undertaking removing this cleat. I worked for about 20 minutes getting these heels off.
Once removed the old plastic heels can be discarded.