Puncture in the sole of my Vomero?

Weird one that I haven't come across before. While running up a bridleway, I trod on a thorny branch, which got lodged in the sole of my Vomero 7, a couple of inches in from the heel. Had to stop and unstick it, but when I pulled it out there was a "hissssssssssssss" noise for a couple of seconds as if it's punctured something.

Are there puncturable air pockets in the soles of these? Just wondering if the cushioning's going to suffer as a result.

And no, I didn't stand on a snake before anyone asks image.


  • My guess would be it's the Air Zoom unit.

  • Yes I think these shoes have a air zoom pad containing pressurised air. I used to run in air max but gave up after two pairs got punctures. The shop pointed me in the direction of a product called shoe goo to block the puncture but it never really worked.

    Whe you run in them if there is a puncture you will probably find they squeek as the air pad inflates and deflates. One foot will feel totally different to the other even just walking about.

  • I was told (20-odd years ago) that Nike Air was freon, the inert cfc gas.  I doubt it is now, but nevertheless, it's under pressure, so plugging with shoo-goo won't help.

    Nike Airmax aren't really designed for running - they are fashion shoes (exposed air bags are too easy to puncture and so big that they lack support - like running on balloons).  Other Nike Air bags, esp Zoom units, are usually well up in the shoe and are protected.

    Sorry, but it sounds like you have a new pair of gardening/dog-walking shoes. image

  • When a Vomero gets punctured, it dosn't actually loose very much in the way of cushioning, because the air cell is compartmentalised, unlike some of the Nike fashion shoes like the Air Max.  The gas used is actually helium, and it does indeed make a hissing noise when it leaves the shoe. 

    I would suggest that you continue to run in the shoes until they are clapped out.  Perhaps consider relegating them to second line duties e.g training rather than races if you are concerned.  My friend punctured his trail Pegasus by standing on a nail, and he didn't notice the difference. 

  • Had an 8 mile walk in them today - there's a small section around the puncture which feels slightly less firm than the other shoe. The hole sucks and blows air out with every stride.

    Still feels good and pillowy. Will try a 5 mile run on Wednesday and see how they feel after that.

    Hopefully they're not write-offs - I've only had them for 3 months. I had the pair they replaced on rotation for something like 6 years. 

  • If they feel good, then keep using them - hooray! image

    Ben, Nike Air is definitely not helium - the smaller molecules of both helium and hydrogen would make leakage a problem.  Nitrogen is possible in some shoes, as are other 'dense' gasses.  The only info I got from Nike, when working on a project with them was that they use "supergases", which are dense and are likely halogenated hydrocarbons, possibly freon.  Geek-mode off!

  • I was told by a Nike rep that they used Helium. 

  • MuttleyMuttley ✭✭✭

    If it is helium, at least you can breathe it in and amuse your mates with a funny voice.

  • US Patent 4,183,156 - Marion Frank Rudy (Nike)

    "13. An inflated insert construction according to claim 11, wherein said gas being either hexafluoroethane, sulfur hexafluoride, perfluoropropane, perfluorobutane, perfluoropentane, perfluorohexane, perfluoroheptane, octafluorocyclobutane, perfluorocylcobutane, hexafluoropropylene, tetrafluoromethane, monochloropentafluoroethane, 1,2-dichlorotetrafluoroethane, 1,1,2-trichloro-1,2,2, trifluoroethane, chlorotrifluoroethylene, bromotrifluoromethane, or monochlorotrifluoromethane."

    The reason that these supergases were chosen was that, in combination with a semi-permeable skin (PU, elastomers, polymers, etc) these large gas molecules would create a reverse diffusion pump - air (oxygen and nitrogen) will pass into the air bag, whilst the larger molecules can't get out.  This leads to an increase in pressure!  Your airbags actually inflate over time!

    Your Nike rep doesn't know what he's talking about! image

  • You have shaken my faith in the Nike rep somewhat!

  • image Sorry!  Talk to the guy from Brooks instead - their DNA is way cooler than Air, scientifically-speaking!

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