Rated 3 out of 5 by pneumatic Good boots but NOT GREAT!
I own a pair of original KIW boots that are about 6 years old. I recently purchased the Plain Toe KIW boot since I like the style and the Cordovan leather. I had to return the new boots because of problems with the sizing and fit.
The Original style boots fit true to size and were meant to be worn with medium-heavy socks. I am a size 9.5M in any well-made dress shoes/boots and my old KIW boots fit great. They are a good boot. The new Plain Toe were much more narrow and the right boot was much more narrow than the left. I could only attempt to try these boots on with relatively thin socks. Even this was somewhat challenging.
The Plain Toe appear to be improved over the Original in terms of leather quality and the use of a steel shank (vs. a fiberglass shank in the Original KIW boots). The Plain Toe version have much better arch support.
Unfortunately, both the Original and Plain Toe version use an insole made of Texon which is simply highly compressed cardboard. Texon is a cheap substitute for leather.
Getting the fit and build quality consistent, plus a leather insole, would make this a great boot. I am contemplating re-ordering another size 9.5M and a 9.5W to see what might fit and I'll update this review accordingly.
June 18, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by johnvsc At first I thought I made a mistake ...
... by listening to some reviewers who said I needed to buy these boots a size smaller. I wear a 10.5 so I ordered a 9.5. When i got them, my feet were really snug -- but that was okay because leather stretches.
After my wife's suggestion, I got a FootFitter (that is a brand, BTW) to stretch them out. After 12 or so hours of stretching, they fit perfectly causing me no discomfort.
If you live where there is snow and wear thick socks -- then get your size. If you don't, then get a size smaller ... and a shoot stretcher (all wood w/ no plastic parts!)
June 4, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by elbarto Great Boots
These are very nice boots, better than I expected. The leather and sewing details seem a notch up from another pair of Chippewa work boots that I own. After reading reviews was a bit concerned about sizing as other reviewers had described them as running large, but after talking to a product specialist I ordered the same size as my other work boots and they fit perfectly. You should probably buy a size down from your athletics shoes, however.The leather can be waxed and takes a good shine, reminding me of my old army combat boots. Waxing also gives the boots good water resistance. It was nice finding made in the USA boots at a reasonable price and I hope to get many years of use out of them.
May 22, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Lidprop Katahdin Iron Work Engineer Boots
Now I know what all the fuss is about and why there are so many rave reviews for these boots. Seems like it has all been said: comfortable right out of the box; great looking; rich cordovan color; made in the USA by Chippewa. I ordered 1/2 size smaller than my normal size and the fit is perfect. Couldn't be more pleased with my purchase.
May 6, 2014
Rated 4 out of 5 by LongIslandNYLovesLLBean Men's Plain Toe Cordovan KIW Engineer Boots
This is a great looking, made-in-the U.S.A. boot in Cordovan. While I recommend them, before you place an order, take the time to read what other reviewers have said, as many of us found a major sizing issue: these boots are easily 1 to 1 1/2 sizes larger in length than other boots. As a result, you should consider ordering a smaller size. My other issue is that these boots lack a padded leather collar, which is a really nice feature on the waterproof version of the KIW Engineer Boot. Having to return and reorder these boots because of the size discrepancy was a hassle. I really think L.L. Bean's merchandising team could easily have helped customers overcome that problem if they had read the customer comments about the sizing issue and put a suggestion in the product description to buy the boot at least one size smaller than the customer's regular boot size. That said, overall, these boots (in a smaller size) are comfortable and look great with chinos or jeans.
April 10, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by NikoPlumbero Katahdin Iron Work Engineer Boots
I Love these boots. Not only do they look great, they are very comfortable. Originally I ordered size 10, which I have been wearing for many years, but they were too loose. Went to the LL Bean store and tried on 9 1/2. Fit was perfect.
I got these for spring, summer, fall as I have the insulated version that I've been wearing all winter.
I like the fact that you can polish them-that keeps them looking like new.
April 2, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by WildGeechee Katahdin Iron Work Engineer Boots Plain Toe
Katahdin Iron Work Engineer Boots Plain Toe Men's
This is my second pair of these boots, they are great and feel broken in right out of the box and are extremely comfortable and offer good support. I wear them at work and on weekends with khaki's or jeans.
the color seems to get better with age. I use LL Bean boot guard and the leather stays soft and waterproof. A great pair of boots !
March 26, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Lovetheoutdoorsalot Great Boots
I purchased these boots about a month ago. I recommend ordering at least a half size down if you wear heavy socks and a full size down if you wear light socks. I experienced very little break in and found them comfortable right out of the box. I recently took them on some light hikes in Montana through mud and muck and was impressed at how well they held up and cleaned up. I've worn them to the office as well as they look good with khakis.
March 25, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5
by gwnorth23 Can't beat these
These are replacing a pair of cap toe Katahdin boots I wore out. These are so well made and so good looking you will not be disappointed. If you want some versatile leather boots you can dress up or down these are the boots you want to buy.
March 21, 2014
Rated 5 out of 5 by Zxyrthe Great boots
I wear a 10.5 US sneaker and ordered these in 10. The boots fit really well with both thick wool and cotton gym socks. Good arch support. Seem to be well made and look nice. There's a slight reddish hue to the color that might not be conveyed online.
March 12, 2014