we continue our stock hunting 101 tutorial dating original vans based on footbed markings. preceding the boxed logo footbed was the mysterious white vinyl 'heel pad'. what could be mistaken for a damaged insole, the presence of which has caused confusion & raised questions regarding functionality. an unusual feaure if without function, SVD indeed revealed its use is to prevent heel friction from eating away into the footbed. used from day 1 in 1966 in various manifestations i remember the elusive crooked tongues interview with the aforementioned stating the vinyl was used til 1988 however they can be seen on half cabs, so we believe our estimate for use of the unmarked heel pad from 1986 til 1992 to be more accurate. we like to refer to the heel pad as the 'seal of quality' whereby from 1992 onwards production standards could already seen to be compromised, even before stateside manufacture ceased.
note well that styles #59 & #69 of the crescent island collection feature a tan heel pad while style #60 & #70 feature brown.
the heel pad can have the tendency to harden & peel away on older models however evidence can normally be seen of its once presence.