Here is a selection of the last three pairs of running shoes I’ve owned:

- they’re all Asics Nimbus x, and all from successive years. I’ve trained for and run a marathon in each of the last two pairs, and am currently putting my most recent pair through their paces with another race in the next few weeks. I’m running 6 days a week at the moment on the road, with a maximum of about 50 miles/week. I really like these shoes – honestly, no complaints and no injuries to speak of.

The thing is, it’s getting to be fairly obvious to me where my runners wear out the fastest – just on the outside edge of the heel, and at a fairly consistent area on the midsole. (yes, I know I should have changed the red & white pair well before they got into the state they’re in)

So, here’s my idea: could someone please come up with a mechanism that allows me to present these old shoes to my running shop the next time I’m getting a new pair so that they can do a quick 3d-scan of the old shoes, then send the scan off to the factory along with my weight and height, and a brief description of the sort of running I do.

There, they would take the scans, run them through a CAD system, do some magic, then 3d-print a new pair for me with slightly harder-wearing rubber on the bits that wear out most quickly for me. They’d send them back to the shop a few weeks later and I’d pick them up. I would even pay slightly more for this, if it means my runners don’t wear out as quickly, and they’ll have a loyal customer for life.

Yes, I admit to the possibility that perhaps harder-wearing parts of the sole might mean less cushioning in those parts, and that maybe the runners are designed to fall apart at the moment, in the interests of protecting my joints? Still, it’d be an interesting experiment I think.

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