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Discussion in 'Hats' started by Spatterdash, Jan 18, 2008.
I do really like the sweat in my Fed IV. As time goes on it really does feel nice to wear.
I'd say it depends on what sort of feel you prefer in your hat. The felt in the Imperial CD is thin and lightweight but well able to hold its shape. The felt in the Heritage is thicker and heavier, more of a Stetson 25 / 7x CB feel to it.
What is the crown height of the Campdraft compared to the Bushman?
I do know the Bushmans brim is bigger than the Campdrafts.
I don't disagree with frussel - the regular imperial quality CD is great and I'm very happy with my two imperial CDs. The difference is marginal. But I do notice the difference in the sweatband and, increasingly over time, it is more comfortable. I almost don't feel the hat when it's on. But the regular ones are pretty comfortable too.
As for the fur, I can't really notice a difference. Maybe it is more hard-wearing and maybe it will age better, but only time will tell if that's the case. And by then who knows if I'll still be wearing it. I would say the difference in felt (if there really is a difference) is probably not a consideration.
I can't say whether it is worth the higher price to you - it is a whopping $70 more and I would think that's too much to justify objectively for the marginal difference. As I said, though, it's my favourite hat and I am happy with what I paid for it. I would make the same choice again.
Hope that helps.
I have both and the difference is in the brim. If you crease them the same, the crowns are pretty much identical and there isn't all that much difference in the brim ... especially if you are used to wide brim hats to begin with.
I really like the dimensions of the Bushman, and if it came in more colors, I'd stick with it ... though I like the slightly smaller CD brims, too, as far as that goes.
Thanks for the comments frussell and Hoyt.
I must say, it is the lightness of the felt that I so admire about the Imperials and having eight Akubras now ... all but one are Imperials ... I am content with their feel.
I am completely happy with the sweats, but I know what you are talking about Hoyt.
The best feeling sweats I have experienced so far are the ones I've had replaced in my vintage rebuilds by Wichita Hat Works. Those are some terrific sweats. Even better than on the custom hats I've bought.
Still, I like the Akubra sweats. They have held up well, so far.
Thanks for the input guys. I'm wanting to make the right decision because I have a feeling this will be one of the Akubras I get a lot of wear out of, due to my past experiences with vintage Open Roads.
Thanks for the input and considering you can just drive over to Katoomba and shop in the Hattery, it's well worth the advice.
They are great people to deal with and if I weren't spending every spare buck on hats, I'd love to travel over and vacation in the Blue Mountains.
I'm not really looking for help making the choice in price ... I just haven't been able to get a real handle on the difference in felt.
I only have one Heritage Akubra and frankly I'm not that fond of the felt. It seems to lack the body on the Imperial, but it may just be that one hat.
What I really like about the Imperial felt is the light weight and the crispness, if you get my meaning. When I snap down the brim on my Imperial felt hats, there is a real crisp feeling. Maybe that is also why I prefer the ribbon bound Akubras ... Sqauatters, Bushman, Campdrafts ...
For instance, what I'm wondering is ... if you had an Imperial CD and a Heritage CD side by side, would the Heritage material be thicker? Softer? Less "snappy"? Or what would be the difference?
I'm probably making too much of all this, because I really like the Imperials I have so far. I just want to be sure.
Thanks again for the input and enjoy the view out there. On the web it looks gorgeous!
I only have the one Campdraft, but I have two MkIII Federations, one imperial (standard), and one heritage (deluxe). Never noticed much difference in terms of thickness, but there was definitely one stiffer than the other when it first arrived. I think it was the Deluxe that was the stiffer of the two, though now four odd years on its beautifully soft (probably my most worn hat too, a real favourite).
I have one of each at the house, Heritage is mine, Imperial is my friend's. I can do a side-by-side when I get home tomorrow evening.
To me, the CD Deluxe is denser felt but not thicker. What you like about the Imperial = light weight & crispness, is not what my CD Deluxe is.
The sweatband is nicer, the ribbon appears to be higher grade, & the felt seems to be a less coarse & denser hand = more substance to it.
Whether that is worth the extra coin, I think that is up to the individual.
More to come....
The quality is remembered long after the price is forgotten
—Sir Henry Royce
As I have noted in this thread already ... I have long worn vintage ORs turned into fedoras. I began doing so around the time I first started reporting, over 30 years ago, because in this western area, dressy old ORs were easy to come by. I am ashamed at how many I worked my way through over the years.
They absolutely don't turn up any more and my last one still looks OK with jeans, but it doesn't do with a shirt and tie any more.
I don't mind the difference in price, I just want to get what I will enjoy the most ... and so far that appears to the the Imperial.
Thanks for the input, gtdean.
I just grabbed my heritage and imperial CDs and, for mine at least, the heritage felt feels a bit thicker (or maybe more plush and dense, or a bit of both). I even weighed 'em in case it helps you - the heritage weighs 167 grammes and the imperial weighs 143 grammes. Side by side the heritage does seem to have a more luxurious feel.
I have a couple of other heritage hats from Akubra and they are quite a bit thicker and pretty stiff and rigid. Compared to those, my heritage felt CD is far softer and more pliable. Slightly less stiff in fact than my imperial CD. But I don't know if that's typical.
You can ask the ladies at The Hattery/Hats Direct about the specific ones they have in stock, or even ask if they can pick one out that fits your criteria best. They're really helpful like that and they seem to have a good stock of the hats they advertise. When I bought my last hat from them they actually measured the size to the millimetre of every size 57 they had, and found a staffmember with a similar sized head to mine to see which one might be more comfortable. Then they measured all the size 56s to give me alternatives. I didn't ask them to do any of that, they just did it to make sure I got the best hat I could without being there in person.
By the way, Katoomba is indeed a beautiful place for a day trip. What you don't fully appreciate from the photos until you get there is that you're standing a loooooong way above the tree canopy and the forests go on in all directions to the horizon. Awesome scenery. I should disclose, though, that I'm a Brit and I only moved to Australia about six months ago, so don't assume my knowledge of Akubra hats is that of a native.
From my side by side comparison I'd say if you're looking for light weight and crispness, the imperial felt is the way to go. That's a pretty good description of how my imperial feels next to the heritage.
If memory serves, the difference in composition is that the Imperial is all rabbit, while the Heritage has a proportion of hare (25%?).
Not sure of the percentage but this is from Hats Direct website =
This felt is a relatively recent addition and is made from finer fibres taken from a select part of the rabbit pelt and mixed with the native Hare resulting in a grade which is denser and smoother than the Imperial grade. Parts of the pelt not required are discarded. It is more stable over time and less prone to shrinkage and distortions such as the tapering of the crown.
The Heritage Grade is the closest rabbit fur grade to Beaver Felt.
You're still just a couple hours away.
It would be a trip of a lifetime from here, and from what I can tell, it must take about that long to get there. A couple of days, apparently.
The pics are all breath taking, though.
Thanks for the input on the comparison.
I'd say I'll be happiest with the Imperial Campdraft for the silverbelly choice.
I look at it this way ... the worst that can happen is after a bit of wear I decide to save up for a Deluxe. Wouldn't that be terrible?
Thanks for all the help.
Stinkykid - thanks for confirming my suspicion about the weight difference. My Heritage CD definitely felt denser and a bit heavier than my Imperial, which is not optimal for where I live. Don't want to offend any Heritage fans, not bashing the quality, just didn't feel enough difference in the felt to justify the $$. The sweatband was definitely a bit nicer, which is important. Frank
I am sure you are right about the felts, but I am also sure you appreciate a good ... GOOD ... quality thin felt, considering your climate.
I am thinking the Imperial weight will be more enjoyable in the warmer months in these parts.
I am also ... in the back of my mind ... considering some later budgeting to get the deluxe before next fall.
As much as I have liked the dimensions of my green and gray CDs, I am really anticipating the silverbelly will fill in the niche that used to be covered with my 40s style ORs in the past.
I still have a decent looking Dobbs Westward and a Stetson Stratoliner, but frankly neither of them have the crown and brim size that those early ORs had.
I don't know about your region, but around here the ORs just don't turn up any more. Especially not in my size.
There was a small one that I found right before Christmas and I almost bought it ... I could have got it for $20 complete with original box ... for resale, but I just haven't gone that route so far. It was a 7 1/8, which is tiny by my standards.
Anyway, thanks for all the input, everyone.
Ok, I have the dimensions for the Akubra camp draft (brim and height), what are the dimensions for the modern Open Road?
I think it's listed as 4"crown and 2 3/4 brim
Well I just ordered a Campdraft Deluxe Silverbelly from the good folks in Katoomba. As I have stated I am a certified Open Road fanatic owning several vintage specimens of various grades of quality. Last year I ordered a Campdraft in Taupe Fawn and discovered what a great hat the Akubra is and that the CD model is so very near my beloved OR. I am looking forward to the arrival of my new CD and will post pictures.