Toe caps are a crucial part of your roller skates. They protect the front part of your roller skates from damage by falling, rubbing or crashing into the wall.
Toe caps also go by the name of toe protectors, toe guards or toe covers. They are perfect for rough roller skate sports like roller derby or even skating outside in your local skate park, where there are a lot of sharp and rough materials for your skate to be rubbed on.
How to Make Skate Toe Caps
There are a lot of tutorials on the internet that tell you how to make skate toe caps for your roller skates. A lot of them don’t really work.
So in this guide, I’m going to tell you how to easily make durable toe guards. Guess what? The materials might already be available in your home.
So what are you waiting for? Let’s get started right away.
Table of Contents Hide
- Why Do I Need Toe Caps?
- Materials You’ll Need to Make Toe Caps
- How to Choose the Best Material for Toe Caps
- How to Check if the Toe Cap Material is Durable?
- What Do Toe Caps Look Like?
- How to Make the Toe Cap Template?
- Testing the Toe Cap Template
- Making the Final Toe Cap
- Fixing The Toe Cap on Your Roller Skates
- Benefits of Making Your Own Toe Caps
Why Do I Need Toe Caps?
You might be wondering the reason you need toe caps. And what is their purpose exactly? Well, I’m here to answer all those questions for you. So sit back and get ready to take in some roller skating knowledge.
Toe caps are covers for the front part of your roller skates that prevent the boot material from wearing out. This can be due to friction with other materials like the ground, road, or the wall.
The purpose of toe caps is to:
- Protect your roller skates from rubbing on the wall when you crash
- Protect the toes of your roller skates when you fall forwards
- Protect the front of your roller skates when you climb on ramps
- Keep your roller skates brand new
- Make your skates look cool
- Save money in the long run
Thus, your skates need toe guards in order to make them last longer. That is precisely why you need to read this article to make your own roller skate toe caps and save loads of money.
Materials You’ll Need to Make Toe Caps
You’ll need some basic materials in order to make your toe caps. Chances are, that you’ll find almost all of these materials at your home. If they aren’t available in your dad’s basement or your mom’s old closet, you can get them at a cheap price at a local store or online (e.g. Amazon).
Here are the materials:
- Leather or Vinyl – This is going to be the main crafting material for your toe guards. You can use any other material that’s thick and sturdy enough to provide a shielding effect from all the rubbing. You can even recycle an old handbag.
- Scissors – You will need a pair of big sharp scissors to cut the thick material. Kitchen scissors are also a great option. Or, you could just use an exacto knife or a box cutter; your choice. Just make sure that the leather cuts are clean and sleek.
- Paper – You need paper to draw the template on; for your toe caps.
- Pen or Pencil – You need something to draw your toe cap template with.
- Scotch Tape – This is to secure your toe cap paper template to check if the template fits perfectly on your roller skates.
- Leather Punch – As the name describes, this is to punch holes in your toe caps. If you don’t have it, check in your dad’s basement or a tool box. If there’s no luck, then ask your neighbours or borrow it from the nearest tool shop.
- 4 Eyelets and Eyelet Setter – Again, if you don’t have these, ask your neighbours. You can also buy them for an inexpensive price from Amazon.
- 20 Double Cap Rivets and Setter – Well, you need something to secure your toe caps with, and this is just the thing you need. It’s not only easier to work with these but these are also a lot less dangerous than a sewing needle.
- Sewing Machine and Leather Needle (optional) – If the double cap rivets are not available, you can use a sewing machine and a leather needle to sew your toe caps. But it’s very difficult to sow a material as thick as leather and you will definitely mess up the first couple of times. So, I recommend the rivets.
Now that you’ve got all the materials in place for your skate toe caps, let’s get on with the next part.
How to Choose the Best Material for Toe Caps
Leather is my first choice for toe caps, but you can also use other materials. It’s best to check if the material is durable or not. The following materials are the best for toe caps
- Leather – Durable and cheap
- Carbon fiber – Best material but expensive
- Vinyl – Doesn’t work better than leather, but still works
How to Check if the Toe Cap Material is Durable?
For this, use the tips of your fingernails, a nail file, or a sandpaper to rub the material. If the material wears out quickly, or you can see a different color underneath the surface; it might not be the suitable material for your toe caps.
It would probably be best to get another material.
What Do Toe Caps Look Like?
A toe cap has a cap-like structure that fits on the toes of your roller skates.
- The bottom part has a hole that goes into the toe stop.
- The upper part has two smaller holes through which the boot laces are tied.
- This is how the toe cap is secured on the toes of your roller skates.
- The toe caps are sewn in the shape of a cone to fit the skates.
How to Make the Toe Cap Template?
A toe cap template is the first thing you need to make your own DIY toe guards. Follow the following steps to make your very own toe cap template.
- Draw a circle on a paper with a diameter of 16 to 20 centimeters based on the size of your skates.
- Draw a circle big enough for the toe stop to fit through near the border of the circle.
- On the other side of the toe stop circle, draw two smaller circles approximately 2-3cm apart, near the border, for the laces to go through.
- Draw a line on each side of the two small holes.
- The lines should go from the border of the circle towards the center of the circle that stops 2-3cm before reaching the center of the circle and is slightly tilted away from the center.
- Draw three stars, spaced equally, on the side of these lines that face the small lace holes.
- The stars indicate the position for the rivets.
- Draw the same kinds of lines on both sides of the toe stop hole at a distance of 2-3cm from the hole.
- Draw two stars, equally spaced apart, on the side of these lines that face the bigger toe stop hole.
- Draw two more lines near the previous lines that go from the border of the template circle and reach the tips of the previous lines, near the center.
- The arc length should be less than 1cm and the wedges on the side of the toe stop hole should look like pizza slices.
- Cut the whole template out.
- The template should have a circular shape.
- One side of the template should have one hole for the toe stop with two wedges on the side.
- The other side of the template should have two holes for laces and two cut lines.
The template is ready.
You can also download any free rough template from google and adjust the size to fit your roller skates.
Testing the Toe Cap Template
Every pair of roller skates comes in a different shape and size; so one template cannot work for every other roller skate in the world.
You can make the rough draft of your template as shown above, but you have to adjust the template according to the shape and size of your roller skates.
To test your toe cap template, do the following steps:
- Remove the toe stop from your roller skates,
- Place the center of the template on the tip of your roller skates.
- The two small holes should be on the top of the roller skates while the toe stop hole should be on the bottom.
- Smooth out and press the part of the template with the two small holes on the top of your roller skates.
- Slide the cuts on the side of the two holes into place and tape it down.
- Place down the other side of the template underneath the roller skate.
- Align the hole on the template with the toe stop hole.
- Again, slide the wedges into place, smooth it down, and secure everything with a scotch tape.
- You can take the tape off and on to adjust the template better.
- .If everything fits perfectly, then the template is fine.
- If the template is too big or narrow, then adjust and draw another template on another piece of paper, and test it again until it fits perfectly.
Cool. Now you’ve got the right template for your roller skates.
Making the Final Toe Cap
Now it’s time to make the final toe cap for your roller skates. Let’s get started.
- Place the template on the toe cap material.
- Trace the template on the material with a pen.
- Cut out the leather according to the template.
- Punch out the holes on the leather for the laces and the toe stop. You can also use a knife or a pair of scissors.
- Put the eyelets through the holes for the lace.
- Use an eyelet setter to secure the eyelet in place.
- Slide the wedges into place.
- Now punch holes on the location for the stars.
- Put the longer piece of the double cap rivet through the holes.
- Fix the shorter pieces of the double cap rivets on the longer pieces.
- Secure the rivets with a rivet setter.
- You can also sow the wedges into place instead of using rivets.
- Use a leather needle and a sewing machine.
- You should practice sewing on a scrape of leather first before making the actual toe guards.
Congratulations, your toe caps are done.
Fixing The Toe Cap on Your Roller Skates
Now, it’s time for the finale. This is how you fix your toe cap on your roller skates.
- Remove the toe stop from your roller skates.
- Align the hole in the fabric with the toe stop hole on your roller skates.
- Fix the toe stop on the skate and tighten it.
- This will also secure the toe cap in place.
- Remove the laces from your roller skate boots.
- Pass the laces through the two smaller holes on the toe cap.
- Lace the boot up like normal.
- The toe cap is secured on your roller skate from the top as well as the bottom.
Now, your skates are ready for use. So, pick up your skates, don’t get scared of your skates rubbing on concrete and enjoy skating.
Not only will your skates last longer, they can also look cool. Take your markers and have fun drawing cool designs on your toe caps. You can leave them blank for a sleek design. You can also customize them to make it funky.
Benefits of Making Your Own Toe Caps
Making your own DIY toe caps can be easy as any other arts and crafts project you do. It has lots of pros:
- Saves you a lot of money – Roller Skating gear is not a cheap investment.
- Saves you a lot of time – Shipping takes forever.
- Fit YOUR roller skates perfectly – The caps you buy usually don’t fit well.
- Can be customized to your liking – Pre-bought toe caps could look weird with the design of your boots. However, home-made ones can be customized keeping the style of your boots in mind.
So, there you go; you have every reason to make your own toe caps and not spend $40 on buying from a store.