Bal-lacing (pronounced, I think, like "ball lacing") is a special lacing. The only application I know of where bal-lacing is useful is on police patrol boots, like those made by Dehner, specifically those which are described as "bal-laced". Take a look at this example.
The word bal-laced refers to a style of shoe that was popular in the early 1800's called a Balmoral shoe. This style of construction came to be known as "Balmoral style," or "bal style", as opposed to the more standard style, in which the opposing rows of eyelets are attached to the vamp and don't meet at the bottom.
Because the edges of the quarters meet completely flush with one another, bal-laced boots can't be laced using the standard "up and across" method (the one everyone learns in preschool or kindergarten) without distorting the edges of the leather (not to mention looking like crap). The ladder lacing is ideal for proper bal-lacing. Because of the structure of the boot, removing and putting it on requires the greatest looseness to be located at the midpoint of the ankle joint, which is directly beneath the middle of the lacing area, so it's much more effective to have the lacing loosen at the middle, rather than the top of the lacing area. Hence, the bal-lacing method.
For those with a mathematical bent, the bal-lacing is essentially a cyclical shift of one of the Ladder Lacings (Variant Two on this site). The lacing itself is very easy, once the structure is explained, so this is a short page.
Step 1: Begin by passing one end of the lace through the top right eyelet under to over. Pass the other end of the lace through the bottom left eyelet under to over. Draw the lace taut, making the lace ends of equal length.
Step 2: Pass the top lace across to the top eyelet on the other side, over to under; then pass the lace down and across to the second eyelet from the top, under to over.
Step 3: Pass the bottom lace across to the bottom eyelet on the other side, over to under; then pass the lace up and across to the second eyelet from the top, under to over.
|Step 4: Repeat Steps 2 and 3, until the ends of the laces together until they occupy opposite eyelets.
Tie the laces. Y'know; like you learned in kindergarten.
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