New in Town
Here are my two cents. In this conversation, there really needs to be a distinction between the modern OR versus the older ORs. They are VERY different hats. I own many modern ORs, both in Royal Deluxe and 6X. I also have an Akubra Campdraft with a cattleman crease. I’m nowhere near being a hat expert, I just know what I like. The modern ORs have a shorter crown, and the felt is very thin. The Royal Deluxe is much softer and “floppier” than the 6X. Not a good or bad thing, just different. The sizing is VERY inconsistent, but in the ballpark. I’m a 7 3/8. The height of your head is very important here. If you have a tall forehead, the hat will sit higher on your head—it will hit the bottom of the crease. It’s really hard to tell you if it will fit your head. The only surefire way to know is to try it on. Do not buy a modern OR if you have plans to ever reblock it—it should be purchased with the intention of leaving it as is. The Akubra can be blocked to your liking. It also has a higher crown, so it is more versatile. This distinction makes a big difference. Even though it can be blocked with the cattleman’s crease, it doesn’t quite look like a Stetson OR. Matter of preference.I want to order the open road over seas. Meaning I can't try it on before. I've ordered 60 cm akubras 3 times, and they fit every time though the style master is maybe just a little tight. Any advice on how to fit the OR without trying it on first? Should I try to get used? Should I get the Royal deluxe or the 6x cowboy felt?
I alternate between the Royal Deluxe and 6X as to which is my favorite. The Royal Deluxe has more give, while the 6X feels a bit more firm on your head. Even still there are differences in fit between the two types—just a fact amongst mass produced hats.
I will say this—my best fitting Stetson OR is a 6X. I have other 6X ORs that don’t fit as nicely.
I only wear it brim up, which, beside the cattleman crease, is the characteristic that the average person knows the (modern) OR for. Some prefer front brim down, but it looks like a completely hat like that. The flange makes a huge difference, too. Both Royal Deluxe and 6X brims can be snapped down equally.
Here is what you can also consider: I bought an awesome older Resistol (long oval) Ridgetop western hat on Poshmark for a great price. I had a hatter cut the brim down to 2 3/4” and put a flange on it (and a front mule kick) and I absolutely LOVE IT. It is a much thicker felt, so can be re-shaped as you wish. The crown is also a little taller. The brim is raw, unlike the OR and Campdraft—this is seemingly a minor detail, but it is a big difference in the overall look of the hat. It just might be my new favorite. Here are photos for comparison: