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Hey Worf - I have a question for ya...

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by BobJ, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. BobJ

    BobJ A-List Customer

    I know you have both US Authentic and Aero jackets - both half belts, if I'm not mistaken. Besides the leathers, is there that much noticeable difference in quality between the two brands? Can you actually notice a difference quality of construction? And if so, what is the difference?

    The reason I'm asking is that I'm trying to come to a decision between getting a US Authentic jacket now, vs. waiting six to twelve months for an Aero. I'm an older gent, and don't have as long to enjoy a horsehide jacket as some of you younger guys - so time is an issue. But, on the other hand, if there is a palpable difference in quality, something you can see or feel, maybe it's worth the wait. Again, I'm talking about the construction, not the leather, as I wouldn't be getting the heavy FQHH on the Aero. Maybe things like seams, lining, zippers, pockets, or...? Have you had any problems with the seams on your US Authentic?

    I appreciate your help, Worf, or help from anyone who has experience with these two brands. It's hard making expensive decisions about jackets you can't see, feel or try on.

    Thanks in advance,

  2. wdw

    wdw One Too Many

    Talking about Aero's painful lead times, someone mentioned on another thread that you might be able to bypass that by buying through Insurrection, as they have a close relationship with Aero.
  3. BobJ

    BobJ A-List Customer

    Thanks for that reminder, wdw! I had thought about that once then completely forgot about it. I think I'll give them a call and see what their wait time is. US Authentic can get it to you in about a week!
  4. Asienizen

    Asienizen One of the Regulars

    I can't comment on Aero because I don't own one. But I do own a stock USAuthentic A2. I've had it for 2 years, done all sorts of activities in it, even crashing my motorcycle in it, and the construction is solid as the day I bought it. The zipper and snaps work flawlessly, not one loose stitch, and the wool cuffs have NO pilling or fraying. Other than the slight road marks it got in the crash - my US-A is as good as when I bought it. I'm not the final authority on jackets, but I think it was well worth the money. Fast shipping too.

    Have you tried sending a personal message to Worf?
  5. Sorry I took so long to respond but I just found this thread. You ask a tough question there Bob. I own halbelts by both it's true... but it's difficult to keep the quality of the leather out of the conversation since they're both leather coats/jackets. To be honest both have their strengths.

    Choice in leathers and options (linings, knits etc...) - The nod goes to Aero, tartans, alpaca and various grades of leather. The choices are unparalelled.

    Quality of workmanship (stitching, seams etc...) - About a dead tie.

    Customer Service (communication and the extra mile) - Aero by a head. I've not dropped a lot of cash there but they make me feel like king and they're always quick with an initial response.

    Turn-around time - Here U.S. Authentic is the clear winner. The speed at which they can make you a custom jacket and make adjustments is nothing less than amazing. If I didn't know better I'd swear it was witchcraft.

    Me personally, I will continue to buy from both outfits. I'll be having U.S. Authentic make me a custom HH A2 this Spring and Aero make me a B-10 in time for next Fall. If I were in your shoes and time were of the essence I'd go domestic. You're closer to Johnson Leathers and Langlitz than I'll ever be, you might want to see what they could do for you as well as U.S. Authentic. But I think every leather coat/jacket lover owes it to themselves to get an Aero at some time either new or used. My U.S. Authentic 50's Halfbelt felt like an old friend right out of the box, soft, familiar and comfy. My Aero LHB is like fighting a living, breathing.... welll horse! I wear it day in and day out and grudingly it gives an inch of softness here or there but my relationship with it is going to take years to develop. I love em both and have no plans on losing either.

    Last edited: Jan 22, 2013
  6. BobJ

    BobJ A-List Customer

    Thank you for your thoughtful answer Worf. I am continually surprised how some people on this fourm are so willing to give of their time and share their experience to help a complete stranger. Thank you too, Asienizen, your experience helps me a lot. Both you guys make me feel more confident ordering a US Authentic.

    I do not presently have a leather jacket and could use an "old friend right out of the box" that can take a motorcycle spill. If that satisfies the hunger, then good. If it only whets the appetite for more (as seems to be a common experience) and I become a dyed-in-the-mouton "leather coat/jacket lover", at least I'll have some room to climb on the good>better>best pyramid!

    Warm regards,

  7. Whoa... if you're looking for a jacket to ride with that might be a horse of a different color. U.S. Authentic could probably make you a Halfbelt from heavier leather... I'm sure they could, but MY coat... might help but it's not gonna do what a Vanson would if I laid a biket down at 60 MPH. I'd look real good till I hit the pavement. If you're gonna ride you need "competition weight" horse or cow. I'd contact Shaul at U.S. Authentic and ask if he can do a 50's HBelt in that weight.

  8. BobJ

    BobJ A-List Customer

    No, I don't ride anymore Worf - I was just refering to Asienizen's comment about crashing his bike while wearing his US Authentic.
  9. Heiko

    Heiko Familiar Face

    I think I've come up on this forum at a fortuitous time as I was just comparing the companies myself.

    Worf, may I ask, how the leathers compare? Is the Aero horsehide much richer in colour? Thank you for your time.
  10. Fanch

    Fanch I'll Lock Up

    Please allow me to throw my dog into the fray. BobJ, let me say that from one old gent to another, I appreciate your perception that neither of us is likely to outlive even a jacket lining, much less a horsehide jacket.:D All things equal, I tend to buy USA goods rather than foreign. HOWEVER, Aero's passion for excellence in their jackets makes them an exception for me. In reality. Aero is a relatively small family business that happens to ship all over the world. Their customer service is 10/10. I had a telephone conversation just this morning with Mrs. Lydia Calder regarding an upcoming order that I have with Aero. Her daughter, Holly, has also been very helpful and accommodating in e-mail conversations.

    That said, I have no firsthand experience with US Authentic but have heard favorable comments on the FL. I agree with what Worf had to say about wearing a thin jacket while riding. Don't go there! Imagine both you and a cycle being thrown out of the back of a pickup truck at 60 mph, elbows over buttocks with a cycle close behind!:eeek: shakeshead So, consider doing what I did: Order either an Aero Highwayman or Half Belt in Vintage FQHH, which is a bit thinner and more flexible than their "regular" FQHH. My Highwayman in Vintage Black FQHH that I have had for a month or so is breaking in nicely. I have a Vintage Brown FQHH Teamster now on order, and was discussing lining options with Mrs. Calder this morning. At any rate, the sample of vintage FQHH "feels" much better to me than the regular and tumbled versions, and even the MWHH samples.

    Conclusion:Based on my somewhat limited experience, at least consider going with Aero's Vintage FQHH rather then the MWHH, particularly if you plan to use your jacket for riding.
  11. Okay Bob since you don't ride anymore I'm sure U.S. Authentic can do you fine if you want quick turn-around on a custom jacket. As I said I do business with both US and Aero and can't recommend either more highly for they each have strengths and merit! As for me being "helpful" I'm just paying forward what I got here from Fanch, Hoosier Daddy, Butte, Graemesy, Peacoat and bunch more folks. And I'm just a nugget myself so if any of the "old breed" (thousands of posts instead of hundreds) answer a question listen carefully to them as well they've spent years and thousands of dollars acquiring hard won knowledge.

  12. Depends on which leather from Aero you're talking about. Horween FQHH looks like nothing else in this world. Near as I can tell U.S. Authentic doesn't offer that hide. HOWEVER if you score some and send it to Shaul he'll make you ANYTHING you want out of it. There's a thread on here where someone had a halfbelt made by another custom jacket manufacturer in just the same manner.

  13. Heiko

    Heiko Familiar Face

    Thanks Worf! Does anyone know any keywords that I can throw into the good ol' search box to find that thread?
  14. Ask and ye shall receive... at least some times... LOL! This is the thread... you get the whole story. The jacket was made at Johnson Leathers and it looks sickeningly sweet... absolutely stunning. More work of art sculpeted from fine Horween. Marvelous!


  15. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    It's difficult to get past the FQHH brown, isn't it? So damn nice. I was thinking about maybe getting my next civvy jacket in cordovan, but part of me thinks 'but wouldn't it look better in brown?'
  16. Heiko

    Heiko Familiar Face

    Thanks again Worf, very kind.

    Cordovan has a slight purplish hue to it making it very different from brown. In shoes at least it is like burgundy. In my eyes, nothing beats that sensational brown aero horsehide colour
  17. IXL

    IXL One Too Many

    I have the same problem when ordering custom holsters.
  18. Fanch

    Fanch I'll Lock Up

    Sloan, I think I'm in complete agreement with you on that one. Also, I've read that Aero's cordovan FQHH tends to "bleed" onto shirt collars and upholstery. I have several pairs of Alden shoes, which are IMO the best dress shoes made in the US. One pair that is a shell cordovan (made from horse) in Alden's Color 8 is exceptional and stands virtually alone over anything else that I own in the way of footwear. Back to the question though of FQHH, a part of me too also thinks 'but wouldn't it look better in brown?' :love:
  19. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    It'd be great to see some nice examples of cordovan jackets on here. We just don't see enough of them. I remember being really taken with Seawolf's cordovan LHB when I first joined, and really was on the verge of ordering one but thought the brown was more flexible (the bleed thing was an issue too). Having said that, I keep seeing different iterations of Aero's 1920s two-tone half-belt, and some of them look really nice - especially the 'sunset' back panels - a bit of a change from the usual.
  20. Sloan1874

    Sloan1874 I'll Lock Up

    Where/how do you use your holsters?

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