ALL REPRO R.A.F. Irvin type jackets

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by Hawk_Eye, Oct 24, 2008.

  1. Deacon211

    Deacon211 Practically Family

    Messages:
    974
    Location:
    Kentucky
    Thanks Worf!

    It got into the teens occasionally and the twenties frequently here the last two years so I'm hopeful that it'll get at least a little use out of it.

    If not, I'm prepared to sweat! ;)


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  2. Spitfire

    Spitfire I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,078
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark.
    I remember when I got my Aces High Irvin in the late spring - almost summer .
    I "flew open cockpit" every day just to get it broken in. It was only when my wife was with me in the car, that I rolled up the windows. lol
     
  3. Smithy

    Smithy I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,137
    Location:
    Norway
    Great stuff Deacon, fit looks bang on to me. Wear it and enjoy it. Don't baby it too much either, they develop far better like an original if you wear it hard and often.

    Haha! I don't know how many times I've done that wearing a flying jacket. I'll admit though that it was slightly easier when I had a convertible!
     
  4. Jabos

    Jabos A-List Customer

    Messages:
    441
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    I am trying to decode between Aces High and Eastman. I love the color of ELC but have questions about their "broken grain". Was that a method used originally or is that a technique used to make the jacket look aged? Also, how does the thickness and durability of ELC compare with Aces High? The Aces High sheepskin leather looks really thick and durable, more so than the ELC, but that is hard to tell from pics. Thanks!
     
  5. Deacon211

    Deacon211 Practically Family

    Messages:
    974
    Location:
    Kentucky
    Well, I can't speak about the comparison between the two, but my ELC has a very slightly rough and matte appearance (as you can see on the previous page) which, if I gathered correctly from my research last spring, is the "broken grain" characteristic.

    From what I've seen here, I don't think that the broken grain is quite as popular as the older hides that Eastman used previously. I myself hope that it does not mean any reduction in quality or durability...I have only worn it a few times so far...so I can't judge very well yet. But I have had good success with both my Eastmans, which never seem to look quite right for at least three years, and I have a fair amount of respect for the company's pursuit of authenticity. That doesn't mean that they are infallible of course, but considering my B-6 (also shown a few pages ago) is going on 15 years old now and looks to have at least that long ahead of it, I'd say that Eastman is still a good bet.

    I also recall reading a thread not very long ago here about someone's near new old stock Irvin having the same sort of matte finish. It may be entirely coincidental, but it did make me feel a little better that, whatever ELC chose for its skins, it still resembled the originals.

    Don't know if that helps any, but I thought I'd throw that out there.


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  6. Dr H

    Dr H One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,905
    Location:
    Somerset, UK
    This is my 'new' Irvin (new to me at least), from John Lever.
    This is one of the rare very early Cockpit Clothing Southampton jackets from the same period as the early Eastmans. John estimates this as being from the late 1980's or early 1990's.
    Having worn it, the pattern is an excellent copy of a mid-war Links with long, wide arms with the correct taper found on originals. John (who has much greater experience of Eastman jackets) confirms that the panel configuration is identical to the Eastman '42 pattern, but the arms are longer and the body 1/2" shorter.
    The materials are extremely impressive - the outer coating of this 20-30 year old jacket has the raised creases seen on original jackets and a semi matt almost dusty look but not dry.

    Dimensions
    Pits base of gusset 22"
    Shoulder to cuff 27"
    Shoulder seam to seam 20"
    Base of collar to waist 23 1/2"

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    Looking forward to wearing this one now that the weather is on the turn.
     
    Last edited: Sep 22, 2014
  7. Dr H

    Dr H One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,905
    Location:
    Somerset, UK
    Here are some images of my old 2-panel Links Irvin (long since sold) for comparison...
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  8. aswatland

    aswatland My Mail is Forwarded Here

    Messages:
    3,338
    Location:
    Kent, England
    Ian, your Cockpit Irvin is very fine indeed and is definitely modelled on a Links jacket. Cockpit have replicated the rounded collar very well indeed. Enjoy wearing it as the weather gets colder.
     
  9. Dr H

    Dr H One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,905
    Location:
    Somerset, UK
    Thanks Andrew, I loved the 2-panel Links, but I felt a bit concerned wearing it sometimes (when it might have sustained damage).
    This will be a happier compromise for the coldest dog walks in the woods!
    It just needs an elastic strap from ELC now and Rob Brace will supply one.
     
  10. Jabos

    Jabos A-List Customer

    Messages:
    441
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Deacon-thank you for your insightful comments. I was hoping you would respond since you have a new ELC. I studied your pics but it is good to hear you are satisfied with the sheepskin finish.

    Dr H-thank you for the photos. It is perfect to see what the finish will look like twenty years down the road. I assume some original jackets had that rough finish. I think yours looks great.

    This was great info. I am leaning toward the ELC now and hope to pull the trigger soon.
     
  11. Spitfire

    Spitfire I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,078
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark.
    Hi Jabos (and others) To help you decode between ELC and Aces High: Here's my Aces High after one year of use and misuse:
    Pictures taken with my iPhone - so bare with the quality. But I hope it helps.

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    I can only add, that I have had several repros (2xALC, Aero, WPG) - but this is by far the best Irvin repro I have ever had. Or seen.
     
  12. Dr H

    Dr H One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,905
    Location:
    Somerset, UK
    Thanks Jabos - that 2-panel Links Irvin is an original and was made in 1939 or thereabouts (possibly used over France as the older repairs to the arms suggest entry/exit from a narrow cockpit), so the figuring that has developed on the 30-year old Cockpit Clothing jacket is a good match for the broken grain that develops over time.
    Good luck with your choice.
     
  13. Jabos

    Jabos A-List Customer

    Messages:
    441
    Location:
    Oklahoma
    Thank you Spitfire! I've been saving every pic you have posted of your jacket. It is amazing!

    I appreciate the info Dr H!
     
  14. Big J

    Big J Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,973
    Location:
    Japan
    Spitfire, thanks for posting those pics, I remember when you posted pics of your Aces High Irvin when it was new, and I thought at the time that for cut and color it was the best repro I'd ever seen.
    How long was the wait time? I rekin there's no chance of getting one for this winter, but if I order now, it'll all be done and dusted for next winter.
     
  15. Smithy

    Smithy I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,137
    Location:
    Norway
    Søren's Aces High is the pinnacle of Irvin repros AFAIC, it's just the bee's knees.

    I have an ELC 1940 Pattern (earlier hide) which I love and which has gotten better and better with use (and in truth I've given the thing a hell of a hard time).
     
  16. Deacon211

    Deacon211 Practically Family

    Messages:
    974
    Location:
    Kentucky
    Yeah, Søren's AH Irvin is pretty spectacular. I have wondered if the more tan ELC or the more brown AH was more in keeping with the wartime jackets.

    In either case though, they both are good looking jackets...especially when they break in.


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  17. Smithy

    Smithy I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,137
    Location:
    Norway
    TBH Deacon, you see variations in shade of the outside hide in originals as well. With my ELC if I take a photo of it with flash it brings out the reddish tones, without flash and in normal daylight it's a chocolate brown.
     
  18. Spitfire

    Spitfire I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,078
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark.
    Depending on the natural daylight - or use of flash or no flash (which I seldom use) my Irvin can also be everything from dark chocolate to slightly reddish.
     
  19. Deacon211

    Deacon211 Practically Family

    Messages:
    974
    Location:
    Kentucky
    Interesting, though I guess that's common for all the WW II jackets, wasn't it. My ELC looks milk chocolatey to my eyes, but it also will look different under flash.

    I guess most of the pics I see of originals look darker brown to me. But that doesn't take into account 70 years of wear either, of course.

    Man, all this Irvin talk has got me waiting for some snow!
     

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