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X-Ray machines in shoe shops.

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In the early 1950s there was a shoe shop in town that was very popular with us kids. After trying on a new pair of shoes you would walk over to what looked like a large wooden box, you would then stand up against it put your feet in a hole and look through what looked like a pair of binoculars at the top, you then waggled your toes to see how much growing room there was. W/E.

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In the early 1950s there was a shoe shop in town that was very popular with us kids. After trying on a new pair of shoes you would walk over to what looked like a large wooden box, you would then stand up against it put your feet in a hole and look through what looked like a pair of binoculars at the top, you then waggled your toes to see how much growing room there was. W/E.

Must admit I had never heard of a Shoe-Fitting Fluoroscope (ca. 1930-1940)

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Brilliant, I want a go !

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In the early 1950s there was a shoe shop in town that was very popular with us kids. After trying on a new pair of shoes you would walk over to what looked like a large wooden box, you would then stand up against it put your feet in a hole and look through what looked like a pair of binoculars at the top, you then waggled your toes to see how much growing room there was. W/E.

These days I would have thought that Health & Safety Regulations would have prohibited the use of such devices in shops.

I have never seen one or used one but I was aware that they existed.

Come to think of it, you don't seem to get as many shoe shops as you used to in town do you?

Whatever happened to Dolcis, Freeman, Hardy & Willis, Jonathan James, Timpsons, Clarks and Hush Puppy all of which at one time seemed to have their own shops?

Anyway, that aside, a shop foot X-ray looked something like this

This one from the 1950's shows someone wearing a steel toecapped boot with a nailed on sole (a hob nailed boot).

As X-rays do not penetrate metal these featues show up well and it would be possible to tell if any of those hob nails were catching the wearers foot from the X-ray (as if he wouldn't be able to tell anyway if a nail end was sticking into the sole of his foot, - OUCH!!). X rays penetrate soft tissue particularly well so although it is possible it would be more difficult to detect "growing room" left in the shoe and where it is catching the foot. The image of the bones themselves would indicate if the foot is being crushed or constricted by the shoe being too tight.

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These days I would have thought that Health & Safety Regulations would have prohibited the use of such devices in shops.

I have never seen one or used one but I was aware that they existed.

Come to think of it, you don't seem to get as many shoe shops as you used to in town do you?

Whatever happened to Dolcis, Freeman, Hardy & Willis, Jonathan James, Timpsons, Clarks and Hush Puppy all of which at one time seemed to have their own shops?

Anyway, that aside, a shop foot X-ray looked something like this

This one from the 1950's shows someone wearing a steel toecapped boot with a nailed on sole (a hob nailed boot).

As X-rays do not penetrate metal these featues show up well and it would be possible to tell if any of those hob nails were catching the wearers foot from the X-ray (as if he wouldn't be able to tell anyway if a nail end was sticking into the sole of his foot, - OUCH!!). X rays penetrate soft tissue particularly well so although it is possible it would be more difficult to detect "growing room" left in the shoe and where it is catching the foot. The image of the bones themselves would indicate if the foot is being crushed or constricted by the shoe being too tight.

Of course ladies buy and wear far more shoes than men

The habit of walking about in ridiculously high heels can also cause damage to the feet which the shoe holds at an unnatural angle and puts pressure on in all the wrong places.

Again this can be detected using X-rays

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These days I would have thought that Health & Safety Regulations would have prohibited the use of such devices in shops.

But back then they hadn't realised the danger of radiation. They were making radio-active health drinks, cigarettes, and a variety of health devices to be worn, all radio-active. The early nuclear tests in the US were a big attraction for the public, rather like the crowds who go to the launch of space missions now.

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The greatest risk from these machines was not so much to the customer (although any unneccessary dose of ionising radiation should be avoided) but to the people who operated the machine.

The page on the link above quotes average dose rates of 60mR/hr (60milliRads/hour). The legal rate for radiation workers in this country used to be 2.5mR/hr max with an average of 0.75mR/hr across a full days work.

Unfortunately, over the years, people have found out about the dangers of radiation more by accident than design.

Wilhelm Roentgen who his credited with the discovery of x-rays is rumoured upon finding out that these x-rays made hair fall out, opened a salon for treating ladies top lips. It soon closed after the ladies started to lose their top lips as well as the hair!

It is claimed that WWII pilots were in more danger from the radiation from their glow in the dark dials which used radium mixed with paint than from being shot down.

It is well documented that these dials were painted by ladies with a steady hand using a very fine brush. The trouble was that they would use their mouths to put a fine point to the brush, thereby ingesting some of the radioactive paint. Needless to say, the majority of these ladies died from radiation induced cancer after the war.

Even now, a lot of RAF camps cannot be used because after the war, a lot of the aircraft were burnt on the fields and so the ground is now contaminated with radioactive paint from the dials.

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Brilliant, I want a go !

Not read anything to make you want to change your mind about this yet Richard <_<

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Not read anything to make you want to change your mind about this yet Richard <_<

I'm considering the high-heels to go with my taffetta ballgown - Hey, it is the weekend lol

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I'm considering the high-heels to go with my taffetta ballgown - Hey, it is the weekend lol

Link fairies please note! Richard has refered to his unusual wardrobe again!! lol

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But back then they hadn't realised the danger of radiation. They were making radio-active health drinks, cigarettes, and a variety of health devices to be worn, all radio-active. The early nuclear tests in the US were a big attraction for the public, rather like the crowds who go to the launch of space missions now.

Well,

Health and safety or not, it has been decreed that exposure to X-rays is much less of a threat than terrorism, and it s even worth sacrificing public decency for if you go through an airport these days.

Low powewred X rays are supposed to penetrate clothing but not the flesh underneath (could be very naughty :o ) but are excellent at showing up smuggled goods and hidden terrorist weapons quickly.

This guy is obviously "all clear" showing only everday objects about his person

While this guy is clearly "a security threat" as the X rays pick up that gun he is carrying about his person straight away.

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Well,

Health and safety or not, it has been decreed that exposure to X-rays is much less of a threat than terrorism, and it s even worth sacrificing public decency for if you go through an airport these days.

Low powewred X rays are supposed to penetrate clothing but not the flesh underneath (could be very naughty :o ) but are excellent at showing up smuggled goods and hidden terrorist weapons quickly.

This guy is obviously "all clear" showing only everday objects about his person

While this guy is clearly "a security threat" as the X rays pick up that gun he is carrying about his person straight away.

Low dose X rays may be OK down at the airport , but it takes a much higher dose at the ferry ports to detect contraband and illegal immigrants as the X rays now have to pentrate the structure of the vehicle like in these images

Makes you wonder how a big a dose of radiation we get each year if you do a bit of travelling in and out of the country. <_<

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The "Z Backscatter" x-ray system used at ports reportedly gives a dose equivalent to 1/2000th of the dose of a normal medical x-ray.

Don't forget the exposure you receive from cosmic radiation during a holiday flight.

Mind you, if you holiday in Cornwall, then the radiation comes at you from below. Cornwall suffers from the highest output of Radon gas in the country.

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The x-ray doses given in hospitals are becoming increasingly smaller nowadays due to digital radiography. The imaging plates used in Computed Radiography and the Direct Radiography panels are far more sensitive than medical film.

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The "Z Backscatter" x-ray system used at ports reportedly gives a dose equivalent to 1/2000th of the dose of a normal medical x-ray.

Don't forget the exposure you receive from cosmic radiation during a holiday flight.

Mind you, if you holiday in Cornwall, then the radiation comes at you from below. Cornwall suffers from the highest output of Radon gas in the country.

Stuart0742 has just flown back from holiday in Switzerland (airport dose, cosmic ray dose, uv exposure) <_<

I don't think he got too close to the Cern particle accelerator while it was switched on to get another dose of radiation from that :huh:

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Pictures of the machine.

Details,

"The Origin of the Shoe Fitting Fluoroscope

X-rays images of feet inside shoes and boots had been produced for a variety of reasons long before the invention of the shoe fitting fluoroscope. Who actually invented the device is something of an open question - it is possible that it was invented independently by more than one individual.

There is a story to the effect that the first shoe-fitting fluoroscope was built in Milwaukee sometime around 1924 by Clarence Karrer who worked for his father, a dealer in surgical supplies and x-ray equipment. After selling several such units to shoe manufacturers and retailers, Karrer was asked by the Radiological Society of North America and some radiologists to stop because it "lowered the dignity of the profession of radiology." Karrer complied, but another of his father's employees quit the company and patented the device. This “history” of the shoe fitting fluoroscope comes from a letter written by Peter Valaer in 1978. In the letter, Valaer recounts how he had a chance meeting with Karrer who told him the story.

There might be elements of truth here, but Valaer’s account is hard to reconcile with the information found in Baring the Sole: The Rise and Fall of the Shoe-fitting Fluoroscope (Duffin and Hayter, 2000). The latter has to be considered the best historical account of the shoe fitting fluoroscope,

Although Duffin and Hayter are somewhat noncommittal, it is hard to read their article without concluding that Dr. Jacob Lowe, a Boston physician, has the strongest claim to the title, “inventor of the shoe-fitting fluoroscope.” Lowe created his first fluoroscopic device for x-raying feet during World War I. By eliminating the need for his patients to remove their boots, the device sped up the processing of the large number of injured military personnel who were seeking his help. After the war he modified the device for shoe-fitting and showed it for the first time at a shoe retailer’s convention in Boston in 1920. Although he had applied for a patent in February, 1919, it wasn’t granted until January 1927. Lowe assigned the patent to the Adrian Company of Milwaukee. The following is taken from an article on page 249 of the January 1, 1921 issue of the Boot and Shoe Recorder (kindly provided by Michelle Cadoree Bradley):

"Foot-O-Scope to be at Milwaukee. Will be part of Model Shoe Store Equipment. A New England device, the Foot-o-Scope, invented and perfected by J.J. Lowe of Boston, is to be part of the Model Shoe Store equipment at the Milwaukee convention of the N.S.R.A. This device, by means of its x-ray attachment, makes it possible to see the bones of he foot inside the shoe and shows clearly any deformation or misplacement of the bony structure."

At more or less the same time, a similar device known as the Pedoscope was invented in Great Britain. The patent for the Pedoscope (No. 248,085) was applied for in 1924 and granted in 1926. Nevertheless, in 1925 the Pedoscope Company claimed that their device had been “in continuous daily use throughout the British empire for five years.” (London Times, Dec. 31, 1925).

According to Williams (1949), the machines generally employed a 50 kv x-ray tube operating at 3 to 8 milliamps. When you put your feet in a shoe fitting fluoroscope, you were effectively standing on top of the x-ray tube. The only “shielding” between your feet and the tube was a one mm thick aluminum filter. Some units allowed the operator to select one of three different intensities: the highest intensity for men, the middle one for women and the lowest for children. "

As has been said the most harm is to the operator not the customer. As they are exposed to any leakage on a regular basis.

NOT A GOOD IDEA.

jiginc

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Well,

Health and safety or not, it has been decreed that exposure to X-rays is much less of a threat than terrorism, and it s even worth sacrificing public decency for if you go through an airport these days.

Low powewred X rays are supposed to penetrate clothing but not the flesh underneath (could be very naughty :o ) but are excellent at showing up smuggled goods and hidden terrorist weapons quickly.

This guy is obviously "all clear" showing only everday objects about his person

While this guy is clearly "a security threat" as the X rays pick up that gun he is carrying about his person straight away.

Where did you get my scan :o

Being a man of a certain size/build i.e. fat and barrel chested (49 inch chest - not at all unlike the chap in the scan) I do attract more than my fair share of attention at Airports, which is why I remove all metal objects (including my glasses) before going through the scanner.

I've also suffered/enjoyed a few "pat downs" over the years, though the comment "It's all me" usually gets a smile.

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I certainly remember using these machines in Sheffield city centre shoe shop maybe in the 1950's . I don't think they were about for long though

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Where did you get my scan :o

Being a man of a certain size/build i.e. fat and barrel chested (49 inch chest - not at all unlike the chap in the scan) I do attract more than my fair share of attention at Airports, which is why I remove all metal objects (including my glasses) before going through the scanner.

I've also suffered/enjoyed a few "pat downs" over the years, though the comment "It's all me" usually gets a smile.

Which one of the 2 images of an overweight guy is you Richard?

Is it the bloke in glasses with a chain around his neck who is going through security "clean"?

Or are you the other guy who has been caught carrying a gun :o

About 11 years ago when we went to Teneriffe we went through the metal detector at Manchester Airport.

My wife went through first and the scanner was "clean"

She was carrying about £1000 in a mixture of English and Foreign (Spanish Peseta) notes.

When I went through the alarms sounded and as I was pulled to one side and searched.

The money in my pocket had set the alarm off

I was carrying 37p all in loose change :angry:

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In the early 1950s there was a shoe shop in town that was very popular with us kids. After trying on a new pair of shoes you would walk over to what looked like a large wooden box, you would then stand up against it put your feet in a hole and look through what looked like a pair of binoculars at the top, you then waggled your toes to see how much growing room there was. W/E.

I can recall using one of these machines in a shop which was either on Fargate or opposite the Peace Gardens, in the very late 60's / early 70's. That must have been the last time they were used as the next time I went for shoes it was that board with the metal slider for length and the wrap around tape for width.

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Which one of the 2 images of an overweight guy is you Richard?

Is it the bloke in glasses with a chain around his neck who is going through security "clean"?

Or are you the other guy who has been caught carrying a gun :o

About 11 years ago when we went to Teneriffe we went through the metal detector at Manchester Airport.

My wife went through first and the scanner was "clean"

She was carrying about £1000 in a mixture of English and Foreign (Spanish Peseta) notes.

When I went through the alarms sounded and as I was pulled to one side and searched.

The money in my pocket had set the alarm off

I was carrying 37p all in loose change :angry:

Add both blokies together, take off the chain - that'll be me.

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I remember the machine/s WE

Could the shop have been Clarkes or Timpsons ? The one on the corner opposite Bunneys at Haymarket

Clarkes sold their shoes (maybe just childrens sizes) in 4 width fittings for every shoe size.

Perhaps they still do.

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I can recall using one of these machines in a shop which was either on Fargate or opposite the Peace Gardens, in the very late 60's / early 70's. That must have been the last time they were used as the next time I went for shoes it was that board with the metal slider for length and the wrap around tape for width.

Could it have been Timpsons on the corner of Pinstone Street and Barkers pool?

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Could it have been Timpsons on the corner of Pinstone Street and Barkers pool?
Haymarket seems to ring a bell, no idea of the name of the shop though. W/E. P S do not let vox kid you on that he can remember them, they had all been condemned by the time he had started walking.

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Timpson Shoes was located close to Woolworth's in Haymarket. Reg. Ashley was the store manager in the 50's.

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