Frank Ripley has been fixing boots from the Peace Region and beyond for over 50 years. As far as he knows, he’s the only cobbler from here to Anchorage, Alaska. Customers come from as far north as Dawson City, Yukon.
Rip’s Cleats™ started under the banner of Rip’s Shoe Re-nu in 1978.
Rip’s Cleats™ started under the banner of Rip’s Shoe Re-Nu in 1978. Here’s how it started: at some time during the start of the cleat business Frank, owner of Rip’s Shoe Re-Nu, had a fall on ice resulting in a head injury requiring stitches. This brought about the idea of creating ice and snow fall protection. Being a master cobbler, Frank developed prototypes of anti-slip devices that fit onto winter footwear. These he gave to seniors to try. In 1991 following a massive weather change “Chinook” two ambulance drivers came to the shoe store commenting that the roads and streets had turned into a skating rink. “You need to sell us some of those cleats things. We can’t stand up out there”. This was Frank’s first “Cleat” sale. Since then Frank developed design’s that would meet the needs and requirements of all industries.Frank’s mother lives in Innisfail AB. Home of the RCMP dog trainers. At some point he provided samples of cleats for them to use. Then in 2010 the RCMP Dog Canine units were called to assist at the Olympic games being held in Whistler B.C.. By the end of the Olympic Games all RCMP and Security staff were using the cleats.To date Rip’s Cleats™ has expanded to include four different models, in 4 sizes of Cleats that are available in Bulk packaging as well as Display packaging. Rip’s Cleats™ provides ice and snow fall protection to all industries including Oil & Gas, Mining, Logging, Police, Ambulance, Airport personnel, Security, Fire Departments, Teachers and School Children, Bus and truck drivers to mention a few.
Background on the success of the business:
- Rip’s Cleats™ annual sales in terms of growth has increased as high as 100 percent per year.
- 2016 was the launch of Display Packaging to allow Cleats to be more attractive for dealers to retail them.
This photo is a cleat that was used for 16 years until the strap finally failed. It is worth noting that the spikes are still sharp and the anti-corrosive zinc plating is still present.
This is a photo of one of the original cleats. Changes were made shortly after to provide a rubber puck instead of leather as the leather would shrink and expand due to moisture.
This is the latest version of Rip’s Cleats™, the Beryllium Copper. This model includes the latest strap, 4 cleats (in Beryllium Copper) and with the latest base.