AMSJ » Blundstone #980 – The Ultimate Mining Boot

Blundstone #980 – The Ultimate Mining Boot

Blundstone #980 - The Ultimate Mining Boot

Featuring world-leading innovative technologies, Blundstone underground mining boots stand up to the harshest conditions.

Blundstone worked directly with miners, experiencing first-hand the environment they operate in, enabling their designers to create a purpose-built boot that stands up to the toughest conditions. This collaboration between Blundstone and miners resulted in the Blundstone #980 – “The Ultimate Mining Boot, the benchmark product that has fundamentally changed the way mining boots are made.

The Blundstone #980 has picked up numerous awards, including the Museum of Applied Arts and Sciences (MAAS) Award and Best in Category (Product Design – Commercial and Industrial) at the coveted Good Design Awards 2015, Australia’s oldest and most prestigious award for design and innovation. Winners were selected from a record breaking 370 entries from all around the world. Judges commented

“The 980 Underground Mining Boot represents a true understanding of the end user. This is design excellence in every regard. For a project to be recognised at this level means without doubt, it is the best of its kind in the world.”

It doesn’t disappoint from a wearer’s point of view either:

“In my 18+ years in the mining industry, I’ve never seen a pair of boots made to the conditions of an underground mining environment, nor had that immediate comfort factor (including surface boots). My feet remained dry, comfortable and the boots were extremely easy to tighten and remove. Not to mention how lightweight they were. The lacing system allowed me to suitably tighten the boot around my foot and ankle areas, so when walking on uneven ground, I didn’t feel my ankle rolling.” Kirsty, Supply Coordinator

And while it’s high praise, it’s hardly surprising. Once Blundstone discovered exactly what miners needed in their safety boots, they went ahead and made it.

Why the Blundstone #980 is The Ultimate Mining Boot

Ultimate in protection

The #980 is packed to the hilt with safety features that are purpose-built to stand up to the harshest conditions. The boot’s steel toe cap provides optimum protection against impact, cuts, penetration and rolling forces. The fully enclosed metatarsal guard utilises XRD® Technology, providing extreme impact protection for the most extreme environments. The moulded XRD® metatarsal guard is soft and lightweight, enabling outstanding protection without compromising on all important foot flexibility and comfort.

A non-metallic penetration-resistant insole provides extra protection as the ceramic fabric is sewn directly on to the upper, thus enabling protection to 100% of the surface of the sole (compared to 85% average protection from steel plate resistant midsoles). The unique design is capable of resisting perforation by small diameter nails and other objects. Made from composite textiles, it is created using multiple layers of fabrics containing high tenacity yarns. After plasma treatment which renders the fibres more porous and hydrophilic, the various layers undergo ceramic treatment. The plasma treatment improves attachment and compactness of the ceramic particles, providing a higher degree of hardness and mechanical, physical and chemical resistance whilst retaining all the flexibility of textile. This makes the penetration resistant midsole lightweight, ergonomic and so comfortable that you won’t even know it’s there — until you need it.

Ultimate fit-for-purpose

The #980 is made from a unique, high-quality patented leather that’s soft and pliable, yet offers superior waterproofing, abrasion, puncture and tear resistance to that of other leathers. To increase protection against liquids, a waterproof membrane is used in the lining of the boots. This prevents penetration but allows sweat vapour to pass through, ensuring your feet stay dry.

The durable rubber outsole offers slip resistance across a wide range of surfaces — while being heat resistant to 300°C and highly resistant to cuts and abrasion.

The #980 has been designed to standard AS 2210.3:2019 and Standard ASTM F2413-18 including electrical shock resistance (Clause 5.6). Electrical hazard resistant footwear provides the greatest protection against electrical hazards. This type of footwear is insulated to help ground electricity from accidental contact with live circuits or electrical equipment. It is a common misconception that metal in a boot is bad when working around electricity. The reality is, metal is conductive when it’s in contact with other metal, however steel toes and shanks are enclosed by non-conductive materials such as leather and rubber and are therefore safe to wear in environments where live circuits are present. It is, however, important to remember that the level of electrical hazard protection of your footwear is severely lessened when there’s excessive wear on the outsole, or exposure to wet and humid conditions. If a safety toe becomes exposed in footwear it is rendered unfit for wear in any type of environment.

Unrivalled underground comfort

While the Blundstone #980 is built to protect in the most extreme environments, that doesn’t mean that they’re not some of the most cushioned boots you’ll ever slip on. Every pair has a high level of ankle support and stability control, while being extremely comfortable and watertight.

The luxury Comfort Arch footbed is anti-bacterial, breathable and washable and features revolutionary XRD®Technology. Also referred to as XRD® Extreme Impact Protection, this lightweight, thin and breathable cushioning material has been engineered for repeated impact absorption. It absorbs up to 90% of energy with every step taken, reducing workplace fatigue and orthopaedic problems in the lower back, legs and feet.

The Boa® Fit System provides custom comfort and allows you to get your boots on and off fast, no matter what the conditions without ever having to remove your gloves. Instead of laces, which can tear after getting wet, or zips that can break after accumulating mud, the Boa Fit System uses aircraft-grade steel and is free of the stretch, weight and pressure points of traditional closure systems. The laces are contained within the system, keeping them out of your way and thus reducing trip hazard risk. The dial is micro-adjustable so you can achieve a precise and custom fit that’s consistent all-day.

Since its inception, the #980 has been updated and upgraded to incorporate new technologies, ensuring it remains the best in its field and the boot of choice for many Australian miners.

For more information on the Blundstone #980 visit

Read more about Blundstone celebrating its 150th Anniversary and visit

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AMSJ April 2022