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NewbieHatter

New in Town
Messages
7
I have a few blocks, but I certainly don’t claim to be a hatter. None on my blocks have the groove. If it interferes with your process then why not modify it? I too insist on a sharp 90-degree brim break.
I’m just wondering if I’m missing something., that’s all. Plus, I feel that altering or messing with a vintage hat block may be considered a mortal sin by some more experiences hatters ;) But you’re right—to get what I want, I should modify it. Thanks!
 

belfastboy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,453
Location
vancouver, canada
Howdy fellas,

I am starting my Hatter apprenticeship soon, and I was wondering if there are any “must read” books on hats and hat history. Also if there are any dedicated Western/cowboy hat books, that would be greatly appreciated.
I would love to hear the details of your apprenticeship. Is it a formal training or is an established hatter informally mentoring you? I think the details would be great to hear about. Perhaps tell us in the "Hat Making/Leanring Millinery thread.
 

belfastboy

I'll Lock Up
Messages
8,453
Location
vancouver, canada
My string settles into the string groove (which is narrower than my block) so it creates an indent in my felt. It makes it more difficult to take the blocked felt off the block and also doesn’t allow for a crisp 90% angle between block and brim. I hope that makes sense. It’s difficult for me to describe!
I have restored a number of vintage blocks that were in bad shape. Lots of cracking/separating of the wood. I use a liquid/light paste wood filler. It sands easily and finishes nicely so you could use that to fill in the groove. I then use a Varathane Diamond coat to finish it.
 

NewbieHatter

New in Town
Messages
7
I'd try putting a rubber band around the block to fill the groove before blocking the hat body and see if that helps to keep your string out of it. Way faster and less permanent than sanding.
That’s a great idea. I only wonder if it would just roll off the end. The string groove is as the base of the block, which I should have mentioned. I’ll try it out anyway and see how it goes! Thanks so much!
 

NewbieHatter

New in Town
Messages
7
I have restored a number of vintage blocks that were in bad shape. Lots of cracking/separating of the wood. I use a liquid/light paste wood filler. It sands easily and finishes nicely so you could use that to fill in the groove. I then use a Varathane Diamond coat to finish it.
I was thinking that might be a good solution too. Thanks for backing my theory @belfastboy !
 
Messages
17,586
Location
Funkytown, USA
Hey all. i was wondering if anyone has any thoughts on the Premier Whippet? I see lots of opinions on the Premier Stratoliner, but not much so far on the premier Whippet. Maybe I'm looking in the wrong places? Thanks.

I know a couple of guys who have found one of those made for the Japanese market at the outlet store and really like them. I'm not certain if the US version is exactly the same, though.
 
Messages
15,576
Location
Central California
Hey all. i was wondering if anyone has any thoughts on the Premier Whippet? I see lots of opinions on the Premier Stratoliner, but not much so far on the premier Whippet. Maybe I'm looking in the wrong places? Thanks.


I don’t see them in the current Stetson offerings. The Whippets I do see in the catalog are not to my personal liking (shape, short brims, etc.). Are you looking at Whippets made for the Japanese market?
 
Messages
17,586
Location
Funkytown, USA
I believe those were made for the Japanese market. Let us know your thoughts when you receive it.

They were also made for the US market. I show them as late as the 2018 Dress catalogue.

Premier Whippet.png


I think the Japanese versions have a pre-set crown and, if I remember correctly, they reincarnated the Whippet liner tip. Bob Roberts scored a black one at the outlet a few years ago and speaks very highly of it.
 

Granville

Familiar Face
Messages
58
Location
Long Beach, NY
I was watching another "hats and guitars" video by Kevin from JJ Hat Center, guy reminds me of my cousin - his accent is something I associate with people who grew up in Manhattan. Kevin was ranging all over in this one, titled "Hat secrets" or something like that, and one of his bits was about finding a second size 'tag' written on the inside of the sweat. So I pulled out my Warwick and did a more thorough search. Well, I'm a boob, because folded under the sweat was the original tag! I'd bought the hat (off Etsy) without knowing the size, just the made-up dimensions the seller came up with, and had to stretch it out (more on that in a moment), but voila! it's a 7 1/8 (I'm 7 3/8 and never would have bought it). But, here's the Question part, on the back of the tag is the union stamp. I'd begun to believe the Warwick ("Bench Made") was an English hat, but ... is it? The union is "International" so maybe the stamp doesn't invalidate my concept of its country of origin.
About stretching: I'd found Kevin's video on stretching to be the best advice ("steam and stretch from the back" as opposed to all-around), but in this "secrets" video he admitted the hat would eventually shrink back because inside the reed (of the "reeded" sweat) is a piece of nylon, and that nylon would ultimately tighten back up UNLESS you clip it (at the joining/back). I worked hard on getting that 7 1/8 to stretch out (by hand, no hat stretcher gizmo), so I carefully snipped that nylon cord. All in all, I really dig the lid, my first vintage purchase (number one in a series, if you will). WarwickLabel.jpgWarwickSelfieCU.jpg
So, anyone else have a Warwick? Is it from Blighty?
 
Messages
15,576
Location
Central California
They were also made for the US market. I show them as late as the 2018 Dress catalogue.

View attachment 419021

I think the Japanese versions have a pre-set crown and, if I remember correctly, they reincarnated the Whippet liner tip. Bob Roberts scored a black one at the outlet a few years ago and speaks very highly of it.


Thanks, Jim. I wish Hatco had kept that website up as what I can find for the last couple years is more difficult to navigate.

I do now remember the Premier Whippet. It looks to have the same crown height and brim width as the Premier Strat and it’s just too small for me. I sold my Premier Strats because at my hat size they were just too diminutive for me. Nice hats though and it’s a pity Stetson gave didn’t stay the course with more open crowns and classic styling….are we down to just one open crown offering now?
 
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