Keen Durham AT ESD Safety Shoe Review

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Keen Durham AT ESD Safety Shoe Review

A year is a long time for a work boot or shoe. That’s how long I’ve been wearing the Keen Durham AT ESD Safety Shoe. 5 days a week for a whole year. Mic drop.Keen Durham 2

I’ve been wearing Keen’s on the jobsite for a few years now. I just got tired of the sore aching feet at the end of every work day. Keen’s have been a night and day change for me. Maybe it’s my foot shape (arch-less blob) that just happens to match their lasts (foot molds) or something else. All I know is that they are incredibly comfortable.

We first saw the Durham shoe at the Keen Utility Media Event back in July of 2015. Up to that point I’d been wearing big boots with huge lugs which are excellent for outdoors but can drag quite a bit of dirt with them. The Keen Durham had almost a smooth sole. Perfect for interior carpentry.

Keen Durham 8

First Look At The KEEN Durham July, 2015

I waited a few months after the event before requesting them. We had just gotten the trusses up on a giant house we were building so it was almost time to move indoors. It was also approaching winter. A good test for any boot or shoe is how they can handle wetting and drying from snow and ice. A huge benefit of the Keen Durham is it’s fabric construction. It handles wetting and drying cycles much better than leather. Leather can dry and start to crack. Not so with these Keen’s.

Notable Features

The Keen Durham Safety Shoe comes in a couple different configurations. All of them are ESD which stands for electrostatic dissipation. This means that it reduces static electricity build up. The AT in the name stands for aluminum toe. It is lighter than steel but just as strong (meets the same prescriptive safety standard). Like their steel toes, the aluminum toe is also asymmetric meaning that it is differently shaped for right and left. This contributes to their comfort.Keen Durham 3

Other Features

  • Electro static dissipative (ESD) footwear is constructed to reduce excess static electricity
  • Left and right asymmetrical aluminum toe
  • Meets or exceeds ASTM F1677-96 Mark II non-slip testing standards
  • Meets or exceeds ASTM F2412-11 and F2413-11 I/75 C/75 SD Standards
  • Oil and slip resistant non-marking rubber outsole
  • PU midsole
  • PU reinforced upper
  • Removable metatomical dual density EVA footbed
  • Hockey skate style laces

What are the Keen Durham Shoes Good For

Keen Durham 7Keen recommends these shoes for indoor manufacturing or light outdoor work. Personally I use them for carpentry. They have excellent traction on concrete, wood, vinyl, and other interior floor coverings. Even wet areas are no sweat for this shoe. And like I mentioned before the sole is really smooth with few sipes (grooves) for mud and debris to be tracked in. The shoe is also really flexible and light so it is no issue bending down and crouching with these shoes on. The PU (polyurethane) midsole also makes it well suited for those that have to stand and work on hard surfaces all day.  A PU midsole is the squishy foam between the upper part of the shoe and the sole. It is like standing on a big cushion. The Durhams are also available in multiple colors. Red/black, black/black, and green/black in the aluminum toe and black/black and gray/black in the soft toe.

Where to Buy

Keen Durham (and all other Keen’s) can be purchased from their website. They have a very liberal return policy. If you don’t like it within the first 30 days, just send it back. You lose out on the original shipping cost but it’s not bad. Exchanges are pretty easy too. Just buy another pair and you’ll get refunded for the first transaction when they get the return back. I totally get wanting to go in and try them on in a store. They have a handy “Find a Dealer” page on their website that can help you find a store locally that sells them.

Normally these retail for $135 but they are on Amazon (black/black and green/black) for $67.50. That’s half price and a screamin’ deal for these shoes.

Keen Durham AT ESD Safety Shoe

Keen Durham 5

About the author

Jeff Williams

Contributing Editor Jeff Williams is a carpenter for a commercial General Contractor specializing in concrete, steel, and wood buildings. Jeff comes from a long line of contractors. His parents started a commercial General Contracting firm many years ago and it has afforded him life-long, hands-on learning opportunities from rough and fine carpentry all the way to structural steel and concrete. Jeff has a Construction Management degree and loves the thrill of coordinating and successfully managing large jobs from start to finish. Inspired by the difficulties sometimes encountered to complete punch lists his motto is, "Work hard until the job is done."


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