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Remedy for Stinky Inline Skates

eebee's picture
My previous Verducci skate boots didn't seem to care if they got wet, but my 'new' ones apparently hate it! These boots just may need to go through the wet-dry-stink cycle a few times to get it out of their system. My 'old' boots were already well worn when I bought them second-hand, so somebody else must've done the honors for me. My current boots are several years old (they still have the old 5x80 frame spacing), but when I bought them from Bruce after A2A last year, they were still shiny on the outside, and the leather on the inside was still furry. Hardly been worn. I mean, Bruce is a skinny vegetarian but I'm pretty sure even he would have left some dings if he'd skated in them much. The boots smelled like a rose until one of our Chief Ladiga Trail excursions earlier this summer, where some hefty pop-up storms gave us a soaking. I prefer to keep my skates in the trunk of my car 24/7 so that if the chance to skate comes up, I'm ready. However, shortly after the Trail soaking, my car started to smell like a dead skunk. After a few times driving to work, convinced my deodorant or laundry detergent must have been useless, I realized the funk was in the trunk. Febreze is no match for this stench. I even risked separation anxiety, leaving my boots on my apartment balcony when I went to work, on days there was minimal chance of rain. My balcony doesn't get many hours of direct sunlight, however, and that exercise didn't help at all. I considered buying various smelly objects to place inside the boots, but as Roadskater says, I didn't want them to smell like the Motel 6. Yesterday I decided to bake my boots in the rear-window of my car while I went to work, leaving the windows cracked an inch or so, to avoid gassing myself on the way home in the event my experiment exacerbated the condition. Having my workstation at the reception area enabled me to keep a look-out for skate-thieves or rainclouds. IT WORKED!! When I got into my car after work, the reeklessness was awesome. On the way home I stopped off at a local park to skate, and there was still a little residual odor left - okay, if I stuck my nose inside my skates (not a great idea). Today I repeated the exercise and I am happy to report - the smell is gone :-) Perhaps there's no UV filter on my rear window? Or perhaps that doesn't make any difference?


skatey-mark's picture

UV rays and kitty litter

I thought all glass naturally blocked UV rays. But a quick check on wikipedia (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultraviolet) suggests that isn't the case: "Ordinary glass is partially transparent to UVA but is opaque to shorter wavelengths while Silica or quartz glass, depending on quality, can be transparent even to vacuum UV wavelengths. Ordinary window glass passes about 90% of the light above 350 nm, but blocks over 90% of the light below 300 nm." (UVA ranges from 320-400 nm.) Tinted windows probably offer some protection. But otherwise I think it's entirely plausible that enough UV rays got through to kill all the nasty bacteria. Although for heat-moldable boots, leaving them in a hot car all day could cause them to soften and lose their shape. Artem had good luck filling a nylon sock with kitty litter and stuffing that in his boots... I forget which type of kitty litter it was -- it was some high-tech kind. (The kitty litter just happened to be the most cost-effective way to get the particular odor-killing ingredient.) - SM -
roadskater's picture

The Stank of Sweat and Humidity

Oy! Ya I was just saying tonight I smell like a sweaty Motel 6 or some such. I even washed my not the skates stuff at home, soaking the helmet strap and pads, washing the wrist guards and hrm cloth strap. I was thinking it was working, but it was still a combination of Gain, Febreze (which I think is sometimes useful) and superstank. To be fair to my skates, they got another soaking over the weekend (or two) and have been shut up almost all of every day. I wonder if it was the UV or heat or combination. There should've been plenty of UV on the balcony, and more than in the car. Maybe it was just not being closed in, getting hot enough to really dry out, plus some UV. Hmm. Congrats! Now I'll definitely alone in my stankiness perhaps.
eebee's picture


I had forgotten about the kitty litter. The ironic thing about the window-treatment was that it worked, whereas leaving them outside in apparent full-blown UV rays, didn't. I might put some baseballs in my boots in case they feel like collapsing!

PEET Shoe Dryer

Best solution is this (to avoid them getting stinky in the first place): http://www.peetshoedryer.com/ EVERYONE SHOULD HAVE ONE. I use it for my inline skates, hockey skates, motorcycle boots, wet gloves, or any shoe that gets wet. It just works. no moving parts, I've had mine for over 10 years now, I think. I also have a knock-off portable version for when I travel. Doesn't work quite as well, but easier to travel with.

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