Akubra questions

Discussion in 'Hats' started by Edw8ri, Jan 20, 2010.

  1. Drftfan

    Drftfan New in Town

    Messages:
    2
    I just got my second Federation. A carbon gray. My first one was a deluxe which they don't offer in the carbon gray.
    I steamed my first one many times changing the bash and brim. It shrunk but not as bad as the carbon gray one has. What I did with the gray was soak it with cold water and steam it a bit to soften it up since it was pretty stiff. It has now shrunk a significant amount over the first one I had.
    For the record it actually does fit ok now. A tiny bit tight but I have a few mannequin heads I could put it on to stretch it a bit if needed.
    The point of this post is I was debating get two more, the moonstone and the brown but am back and forth on regular or deluxe now.
    Has anyone notice their deluxe shrink by one full hat size like my standard has now done?
     
    Scooterz likes this.
  2. Boomerang

    Boomerang One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    170
    Location:
    Washington State
    I've owned three Fed IVs, all Imperial Grade (standard - not deluxe), and I didn't have any noticeable shrinkage on any of them. Two of these hats saw some pretty heavy rain, and all three were shaped by soaking them with room temperature, misted, distilled water.

    Your use of steam may be the culprit in regard to the shrinkage you suffered. Akubra literature recommends shaping after a good soaking downpour, and mentions that steam may shrink the felt. I abandoned steam and switched to distilled water from a spray bottle for my Akubras, simply because it is easier and I get better results.
     
    MagicMan, Zombie_61, Scooterz and 2 others like this.
  3. Scooterz

    Scooterz Practically Family

    Messages:
    613
    Location:
    The Great Plains
    You ought to get 1 size up if you order new ones. I am a 58 and now, when I can, I order a 59. I have both 58 and 59 Akubras. I usually only use a spray bottle with distilled water and wet my Akubra hats pretty good to shape them, not steam. The thick felt seems hard to bash much with my little steamer. I usually wear it and keep working on the bash for a while as it dries. I may take 2 or 3 sessions of wetting shaping and letting dry before I get an Akubra hat where I want it. I use hat sizing tape/foam or pieces of felt (I use multiple layers of thin felt from Hobby Lobby that are about 20 cents each and cut strips) in my hats if they are too large (whether 58 or 59). My Banjo Pete seemed too big at 59 so I have felt behind the sweat. It has not shrunk much if at all since I got it. My 58 campdrafts have not shrunk much other then to fit a little better. My 58 Fed IV (which I got from Boomerang) has shrunk since I received it and got a little tight. I had the ribbon replaced so that could be a contributing factor. I used a hat stretcher (also called a retainer) to stretch it a bit and let it sit with retainer in it for a day or so. That worked ok. Just the other day I used the hat stretcher and some steam and gave it a good stretch and let it cool for a few hours with the stretcher still in it. There is a video on youtube from JJ Hat Center about how to stretch a hat that is good to watch, maybe a few times. You do not have to be as aggressive as Kevin is in the video. His steamer is a lot better than home steamers tend to be. But note he works on the back of the hat quite a bit with steam as he stretches it. You want to avoid getting the sweatband itself wet or hitting it directly with steam. It can shrink due to that. One reason I carry a handkerchief or a bandanna is to wipe my sweatbands off if its warm or humid enough to make me sweat a lot. I wipe my head and the sweatband. Since the bigger stretch with steam my FED IV is still a little bit roomy after several days. If it tightens up too much I will try it again and or just leave a hat retainer in it while stored. My 59 CD has shrunk a tad and I removed some of sizing tape but not all of it. It is still very comfortable and fits well with tape in it. So far the Fed IV has shrunk the most. It is almost a non-issue with my others. I do have another type of Akubra in 58 on the way because I could not get a 59. Crossing my fingers it does not need stretching but if it does I can probably deal with it. I am sure there are other threads here that discuss stretching hats.
     
  4. jlee562

    jlee562 I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,597
    Location:
    San Francisco, CA
    The current iteration of the "hat care" section on their site does say that you can use some steam on the brim and crown, but do advise "We do not recommend completely immersing your Akubra hat in water as this may distort the shape."
     
    deadlyhandsome and Scooterz like this.
  5. Drftfan

    Drftfan New in Town

    Messages:
    2
    I did what I initially stated was put it in to one of my mannequin/lifecast heads. George Clooney as a matter of fact. After maybe ten minutes or so it did stretch back out. It is the sweatband that has shrunk from what I can tell. Genuinely not an issue for me. I had bought a different hat I put up for sale the next day after I got it cause there was no way it would shrink enough. And it was just huge on my head. Also a 56.
     
  6. theRomanian

    theRomanian New in Town

    Messages:
    1
    Hello Forum, looking for informations on Akubra i came acros Fedoralounge. After some passive reading, I would like to ask your oppinion:
    I look at Snowy River and Cattleman, I like the brim form of the snowy river and the holes of the Cattleman.
    What I dont know, is if it would be possible to add the ventilation holes to a snowy river or even vice-versa, shaping the Cattleman to get the brim like a snowy river. What is your experience /suggestion?

    I cannot order both since I am going to order from europe to EA or HatsDirect, which would imply more shipping costs just for "try and error".

    Thank you.
     
    1967Cougar390 likes this.
  7. 1967Cougar390

    1967Cougar390 Practically Family

    Messages:
    607
    Location:
    South Carolina
    The information you seek could be listed in the thread Akubra Overload: https://www.thefedoralounge.com/threads/akubra-overload.33000/

    It’s also helpful to type your question in google and follow it with Fedora Lounge. I have found that that way of searching works better than the search feature here.

    I hope this helps.
    Steven
     
    belfastboy likes this.
  8. johnnycanuck

    johnnycanuck Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,464
    Location:
    Alberta
    Great question. Wrong people to ask. I would fire off an e-mail to EA and HatsDirect and ask them, then let us know what they said. About fifteen years ago (last time I ordered a new Akubra) the fine people at HatsDirect would make those changes for free (brim change) or a few dollars charge (cost of grommets).
    If they will not make those changes, the easiest option would be the Cattleman brim change. Just get it wet in a rain shower and manhandle it into the shape you want. The other option is buy the grommets and hammer them in the Snowy River yourself. That could be easy depending on how much you trust your alignment.
    Hope that helps.
    Johnny.
    P.S.
    when I ordered my Black Akubra Down Under from HatsDirect and told them I wanted it as a Crocodile Dundee hat they were the ones that pointed out Paul Hogans hat had grommets and they offered to put them in my hat free of charge..... that was 15 years ago and things may have changed.
     
  9. Cheshire-Cat

    Cheshire-Cat New in Town

    Messages:
    2
    Information is very scarce on this hat, even though they are the first thing you see on Akubra's official Australian website. They are pushing them because they are the new thing, came out maybe a couple years ago, but I can't find any honest reviews on them anywhere. Only two youtube videos, really. One from the Hatsbythe100 guy just showcasing it to sell, and another guy that has barely worn his so far (he responded in youtube).

    Basically, the Avalon is a super soft, crushable hat that looks very cool in pictures. Now for the part that gets dicey...
    -It is considered a "made-to-order" hat and the wait time is currently 45 days on seemingly every website.
    -Most websites don't offer returns on made-to-order hats, which means if it doesn't fit or I don't like it two months from now, I'm SOL and out $150.
    -David Morgan, the American distributor of Akubra hats, doesn't carry it.

    When I asked them why, they responded with this:
    "Thanks for writing. We had Avalon at one time, but we were not happy with it. It did not come in fitted sizes, just Small, Medium, etc. Also, it was quite floppy, not formed and rigid like the other Akubra’s. It’s marketed as a woman’s hat and we never do well as a company with women’s clothing or hats. And, no, we are not able to obtain it for you. Sorry."
    This is odd because on the official site, it is marketed as unisex and half of the models in the pictures are male. Maybe she was just offering her opinion?

    I would really like to hear from someone with an Akubra Avalon. How do you like it? Some website reviewers mention it is a little thicker than other Akubras, but never mention if it breaths well or if it is hotter. I would really like opinions on this. Is the "floppiness" a real problem for this hat, as the David Morgan lady described?

    I live in hot California and want a hiking hat I can leave in the trunk of my car like my Tilley hats. I was looking for a change, frankly. I recently bought an Akubra Cattleman but I also want a crushable hat.

    I realize there is also the Akubra Traveller, but it is a little too plain-looking for my taste. Is the Akubra Avalon worth $150, 45 days to make it, and another two weeks for shipping (2 months)? All opinions are very welcome!
     

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  10. johnnycanuck

    johnnycanuck Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,464
    Location:
    Alberta
    Is it worth it? That’s really up to you.
    I don’t have one but looking at Instagram the hat isn’t structured at all. Have a look for yourself and see other people wearing the hat.
    For me I have an off centred long oval head so the brim would have a deep swoop to it dipping down at the front and to the side. So if you know your head shape and what it will do to the brim you can make the call. If you don’t know your head shape that could be a gamble.
    I personally don’t like floppy brims. The wind we get here would cause that brim to either flip up or down slapping me in the face. I have a really old Federation that can do that so I avoid wearing it on windy days.
    I have tried S, M, L sized hats on in stores and can’t do it. A little loose, a little tight. A properly fitted hat is worth it.
    You want to keep it in the trunk. With a cloth sweat band that won’t shrink. But I am sure that’s not great for the felt. I would hate to spend $150 and have it shrink on me.
    For what you want the hat for, if it was me I would buy a cheap western felt hat off of Kijiji, Craig’s list. eBay. Probably about $50 or under if you keep an eye out. Take out the leather sweat band and sew in a fabric one. Soak it down and reshape it to how you want it. Throw it in your trunk. If it shrinks then you are only out a fraction of the price.
    But that’s just me.
    Hope that helps
    Johnny
     
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  11. Cheshire-Cat

    Cheshire-Cat New in Town

    Messages:
    2
    Thanks for the reply!
     
    johnnycanuck likes this.

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