Designed and developed from the ground up by Anachronorm Designer and Founder, Tanushi Tomoki, the PRAS (Paradise Rubber Athletic Shoes) line of footwear marks a new standard in Made in Japan Vulcanized sole sneakers. With only two factories left in all of Japan still able to churn out Vulcanized soles (both are in Kurume city, Shikoku), and no factory in the United States that is still manufacturing this style of heavy duty sole, these are rare to say the least.
They are manufactured in the same way as those produced for navy sailors in times of war. The vulcanized sole giving them extra propulsion on the slippery platforms of the ships, allowing for versatile movements in any weather condition.
The combined functions of the strong sole and upper bond, the hard to peel off sole, and the hard to lose form, are all created by the vulcanization method.
The vulcanization method is where the rubber sole and shoe body are joined together and heat and pressure is applied in a sulfur-added kiln. At over 100 degrees celcius for approximately one hour, pressure and heat is applied to the sneakers in the kiln. The ‘vulcanization method’ is carried out basically by hand, taking more labour and time and effort than you can imagine, so has bad production efficiency. Therefore, the number of companies using this method have decreased dramatically, and currently it is said that including PRAS, only three companies in Japan are currently producing by the vulcanization method.
The factory in Kurume, which has over 75 years of history, will continue to protect the ‘vulcanization method’ and continue to share its good quality with the world.