Freshen up an old Bates ...

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by TheGuitarFairy, Oct 28, 2020.

  1. TheGuitarFairy

    TheGuitarFairy One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    Just West of Boston
    Howdy Friends,

    Main zip on this Bates is done (all zips are Serval btw) and liner, while I bet I could mend where it's opened up, is pretty stinky. Therefore I'm considering replacing main zip and liner. No one I've reached out to about repairs stocks NOS zips this size/vintage or satin in this color.

    My Qs .. a) when I'm trying to source vintage zips and I'm measuring the one on my jacket .. from where to where am I measuring? End to end of actual metal-zip part? (21" on this Bates) Can zips be shortened?
    I found a <blue> Serval and this gray Talon which I bet would work well color wise?
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/1-ZIPPER-A...995345?hash=item4b615c70d1:g:6gcAAOSwhUtbVc~S

    If <exact> zip length isn't critical there's this guy
    https://www.ebay.com/itm/Talon-Heav...216728?hash=item3fec3acf18:g:PFoAAOSwB0he0SWt

    and b) any ideas where to look for satin of this color?

    Thanks and hope everyone's well out there,
    Mike

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    Last edited: Oct 28, 2020
    Jin431 likes this.
  2. jpk_NJ

    jpk_NJ Practically Family

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    NJ
    Regarding the new zip, you need the new one to be at least as long as the current one. Measuring from the bottom box to the last upper tooth/zip stop. Teeth can always be removed / effectively shortening the zip. But no dice the other way around. And no matter who does the repair, you will be able to tell a new zip was put in / extra stitch holes. It will never be 100%. I would think hard about how often you plan on actually zipping up a vintage jacket and see if its worth fixing. For me, a vintage piece is more about the look / wearing unzipped vs actually jacket duty. But if it was a vanson or something similar I was actually wearing as a proper jacket then make it functional. Look into a small ozone generator to freshen it up if the normal ways don't work.
     
  3. Jin431

    Jin431 Practically Family

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    577
    Location:
    Bay Area CA
    Good luck with this project! Will keep an eye out how this turns out!
     
  4. TheGuitarFairy

    TheGuitarFairy One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    Just West of Boston
    This is a really wise angle, jpk, thank you.

    Fact is until I lose another 10lbs, I won't everrr be able to zip this jacket .. every other measurement works except the chest. Only reason I'm even considering all this is in the spirit of being a good caretaker. I've been on the hunt for an old Bates racer in BnW since first time I saw one.

    Now to address subtle stink. This guy was raced and I'm thinking sweat is imbedded in the pit-area leather as well as liner.

    M
     
  5. Claybertrand

    Claybertrand A-List Customer

    Messages:
    343
    My random thoughts on this:

    As JPK says, zippers can always be shortened and very easily so. Can't be lengthened.

    Be mindful that you must purchase a "SEPARATING ZIPPER" otherwise, you have the type that is made for an opening and not for a jacket and therefore, it is permanently connected at the box end. You may be able to buy longer vintage stock Talons/Serval for cheaper than actual jacket size and since they can be shortened, you can possibly save money. Jacket sized vintage zippers sell at a premium. ALSO, don't sweat the zipper tape color too much. You can purchase "Fabric Markers" at most craft stores or online. They are Japanese paint/fabric dye markers and with a little time spent on it, you can "Paint/Dye" your jacket tape black. This method only works going from a light tape to dark but it works perfectly. The dye doesn't run either. Turns out great.

    Servals will be cheaper than Talons but less prevalent. The people who have these zippers KNOW they are the only source and the cost will reflect that. The Main zip replacement in my area runs $100.00. I have heard of people paying $50-$65 in other States (Im in California where only sunshine is cheap). My last replacement cost me $95 for the NOS Talon #10 Brass zipper (with tan zipper tape) plus the cost of a Fabric Marker and $100 to have the zipper replaced.

    Its a costly endeavor and unexpectedly so for some who haven't had to do it. When I see a cool Vintage piece with a faulty zipper, I almost always end up passing on the purchase unless the cost is so low or the piece so unique that its worth the money to replace the main zip. If replacing a Vintage Main Zip on a Vintage Piece you are considering buying, ya gotta factor that into what you're willing to spend to purchase said piece.

    You CAN purchase a used main zipper (or remove one from an existing "donor" jacket you have or buy), but at the rates of replacement and the fact that a Main zipper is THEE most often used mechanical part on a jacket, the used zip already has miles on it so you take a risk that it will hold up after paying to have it installed. Main zippers are the most replaced part of jackets over their lifetime. IOW--if the jacket is worth it, bite the bullet--look to NOS if you can find/afford it. Keep in mind that the more times a main zip is replaced, the more chewed up that part of leather gets from being stitched and re-stitched and it CAN weaken this part of the jacket.

    Don't be so quick to replace any zipper unless the track itself is not functionable. Slides can be replaced for a fraction of a full zipper and work for years.

    Lastly, I must mention that there are many people who have no issue replacing a vintage zipper (Talon, Serval etc) with a modern YKK. I am NOT one of those people but I can totally see their side of doing this. YKK makes excellent zippers. Probably the world standard. I'm just a stickler for authentic vintage and choose to go that route but I must say, it was double the price to do so on my last one AND it took me a good year and a half to locate an acceptable NOS vintage replacement.

    I hope this gives you some perspective and helps you out. Cool jacket. Best of Luck.
     
    roadking04 likes this.
  6. Will Zach

    Will Zach One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,129
    Location:
    Northeast USA
    Some folks, including me, give old jackets a bath in warm water with a mild detergent. Agitate gently by hand, rinse well, dry lying flat on a towel. This should get the sweat stink right out.
     
    JoeNiblick likes this.
  7. TheGuitarFairy

    TheGuitarFairy One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    Just West of Boston
    Thank you Claybertrand and Will ..

    Will, you had to see what this thing looked like when it arrived .. It was gross.
    I soaked it in a soapy washer for a few hours. Took it out while drenched and gently scrub-brushed it everywhere with fresh soapy water. Put it back in fresh soapy washer and eventually put it through a gentle cycle.
     
  8. Will Zach

    Will Zach One Too Many

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    1,129
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    ^^
    Awesome. Looks good, great jacket.
     
  9. handymike

    handymike I'll Lock Up

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    Why not send it to Bates and get that sweet gold liner put it?
     
    Will Zach likes this.
  10. TheGuitarFairy

    TheGuitarFairy One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    Just West of Boston
    Where's the "Boo" button?

    I've been typing with Dawn at Bates .. They have black satin which isn't a bad option but it'd sure be nice to stay with gray.

    Here's a 22 1/2" Serval but in blue. Is tape width critical? Wonder if this could be dyed black? Might be good to have replacement just cause.
    https://www.etsy.com/listing/679908724/vintage-heavy-duty-metal-coatjacket-open
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2020
  11. Will Zach

    Will Zach One Too Many

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    Location:
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    Aaah, so the gold liner is discontinued? I always liked it...:(
     
  12. handymike

    handymike I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    7,482
    Location:
    SoCal
    Oh no, discontinued...!!!
    How am I gonna fix mine up?
     
  13. Will Zach

    Will Zach One Too Many

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    1,129
    Location:
    Northeast USA
    A powder blue to black dye job will be easy.
     
  14. JoeNiblick

    JoeNiblick One of the Regulars

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    Location:
    Alaska
    I've been reading a bit about jacket odor, as I just got two in that are a little stronger smelling than I care for. I've read about baking soda and vinegar, and both seem a bit messy. I was also wondering about using an ozone generator. I have one for the basement. I think I might try that first, when I finally get around to it.
     
  15. TheGuitarFairy

    TheGuitarFairy One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    289
    Location:
    Just West of Boston
    Yup I was considering vinegar/baking soda too, Joe. Held off for same reason.

    Dena wrote she'll take care of odor w/ an ozone generator .. So plan is to stick w/ original liner and just repair the few splits that've occurred. She also wrote she'd be able to replace pin side of zip w/ only pin side of NOS Serval I've got on the way .. IOW original Serval box side doesn't get touched. She seams confident repair would hardly be noticeable.
     
    Last edited: Oct 29, 2020
    JoeNiblick and handymike like this.
  16. Bahabp100

    Bahabp100 One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    171
    Arrow leather can “clean” the smell of smoke , pipe tobacco and sweat pretty well . After I tried everything
    They were an excellent service and guaranteed and pleasant
     
    JoeNiblick likes this.

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