Anybody Have The Modern-Day Stetson Hat Decoder Ring?

Discussion in 'Hats' started by Bob B, Feb 27, 2021.

  1. Bob B

    Bob B New in Town

    Messages:
    3
    Hi Guys,

    Newbie here. I searched around this site and didn't see anything obvious, so bear with me. I picked up a fairly new Stetson western hat for real cheap to knock around in and I need to replace the sweatband, as most of it is missing. From what I've read online and in here, getting a genuine Stetson sweatband online to install won't happen, so I need to bring it to a Stetson dealer (of which there are none around) or replace it with a generic. The generic is a fine option, as I'm not concerned about long-term value or such.......it's going to be a work hat. But I would like to know what I'm starting out with, just to make sure I'm not messing with something worth preserving. I tried to find the same hat band online, but after looking at hundreds of pics I've come up empty. With the hat identifiers (4x, 6x, beaver, wool, etc) DSC05993.JPG DSC05989.JPG DSC05990.JPG DSC05993.JPG DSC05989.JPG DSC05990.JPG missing from the old sweatband all I could find was the inspection tag, the size tag and the thin white paper inventory tag glued to the hat behind the sweatband. I've attached pics, but in case they're not legible it reads " -4- 610 K70952 7-1/8 R ". Can someone point me to the decoder ring for this info? It's much appreciated.

    regards,
    bob
     

  2. The only thing that means anything to me is the 7 1/8 R. It’s the hat size and it’s a regular oval. It’s a recent production hat, and most years some new models or variants are introduced and old ones and discontinued so it will be difficult to determine exactly which model it is. From the age of the hat and the look, you don’t have anything you need to be concerned about preserving. You also don’t need to take it to a Stetson dealer: any hatter worth his/her salt can replace the sweatband.

    The factory labels have changed a lot over time. The factory uses those numbers to represent color, type of felt, blocking, finish styles, accouterments, etc. We have threads here where Stetson’s labels are discussed, but as collectors and lovers of fine hats we don’t usually care so much about these modern hats and I doubt that thread will help you. I have a few of these more modern hats and they make fine hats for hard use that you don’t have to worry about. Do what you need to get it wearable and don’t look back.

    Brent
     
  3. belfastboy

    belfastboy I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    6,386
    Location:
    vancouver, canada
    The new sweat will cost you (installed) $25 to $50 plus another $50 for postage round trip. It might not make sense to spend that kind of money on a very replaceable hat. I have picked up some very nice western hats to knock about it, good sweat, liner and fur felt for $50 on Ebay, less than that for my wife with her small head size. 7 1/8 hats can be had cheaply with a little patience on the Bay. Or have a little fun, buy the sweat band (Etsy.com)and install it yourself. Not hard at all.
     
  4. Bob B

    Bob B New in Town

    Messages:
    3
    Hi Brent! Thanks for the quick reply. I understand what you're saying. It's funny because I priced replacement sweatbands on eBay and they go for $25-ish. But I can get another similar newer Stetson, in rough shape, for less than that.........and just take the band from that one. The problem I run into is that when I've tried that (twice now) I was able to get both junk hats into good wearable condition........so rather than solve my problem........it's just making my closet a bit more crowded. It kills me to pull a good band off a decent wearable hat and throw the rest of it away. Maybe I'm just a cheap b#$stard! But I'll bite the bullet and cannibalize the next one. Take care my friend.

    regards,
    bob
     
  5. Bob B

    Bob B New in Town

    Messages:
    3
    Hi Belfast,
    Roger that! It's amazing that for many things we buy online the postage is more than what we pay for the item........and like lemmings we just grin and bear it. I've stopped doing that when I can live without it........just on the principle of it. But I hear ya. I found a place that I can get these newer used Stetsons for $10 to $50, shipping included, and I can sew, so the answer is obvious. But still would be cool to find the decoder ring, if it exists. Thanks for your reply, my man!!

    regards,
    bob
     
  6. johnnycanuck

    johnnycanuck Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,527
    Location:
    Alberta
    I am in a similar boat. I have a great western hat I re-creased to a fantastic John Wayne style I love. But the sweatband crumbled out of it. I know enough to tell it’s a wool blend hat so it really isn’t that worth it to get a new sweatband except I love the hat.
    You have an advantage though. It looks like you still have the edge of the sweatband still attached to the hat. There is nothing saying you can’t wear it as is. You can also tuck a strip of leather or something behind that bit that’s still there if you want to protect the felt. To me that hat is still usable as is. The black will hide sweat stains but as a working hat you may want that “hard use” look the dirt and sweat stains will give.
    My two cents worth
    Johnny
     
  7. belfastboy

    belfastboy I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    6,386
    Location:
    vancouver, canada
    I have great fun and derive satisfaction from rescuing hats from the dumpster.
    My go to hat these days is a gifted & rescued old Flechet stingy brim. I love fixing them up, cleaning, redyeing, new sweats, moth nibble repairs.
     
    deadlyhandsome and Frunobulax like this.
  8. Timeras1

    Timeras1 New in Town

    Messages:
    16
    Location:
    Fayetteville, AR
    Care to share where, Bob? Inquiring minds want to know!!!

    Thanks!
     

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