G8 (Type 440) Jackets help requested

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by KELORGO, Sep 10, 2012.

  1. KELORGO

    KELORGO New in Town

    Messages:
    46
    Location:
    USA
    Hello to all. This is my first post, but I've been registered for a while and have been lurking much, much longer. My leather jacket experience has been limited to a custom Pop's Leather G1 and more recently a Sporty's Pilot Shop AN-J-3 (one of the older Made in the USA ones) I bought on the bay. I've really come to like the styling of the G8 (Type 440) jacket as offered by Cockpit/Avirex and US Authentic. I was recently out bid on a Willis and Geiger example, and just today somebody got to an Excelled Buy it Now before I could act on it.

    I have read all I can on the G8, and I know they were a made-up jacket and were never issued to our armed services, so I'm not trying to revive that old beaten topic. I'm hoping that those of you who own (or have owned) any makers G8 can help me out as I decide whether I really want to buy one, and could steer me toward one of the better brands. My feelings won't be hurt by any information you provide or corrections you make, since I'm trying to learn and am not an expert in leather jackets.

    As far as I can tell, the only companies currently offering G8 jackets are Cockpit (through US Wings and others) and US Authentic through their website. I know about Lost Worlds, but don't have that kind of money to invest in a jacket right now. Would you recommend the Cockpit or USA versions, and why? Is one's construction or goatskin better than the others? Does either one fit differently than the other? If I went with US Authentic, do you think their horsehide would be suitable for use in this type of jacket, or would the drape be all wrong?

    Were the Willis & Geiger or Excelled versions of equal (worse/better) quality than the Cockpit and USA versions? Any pictures of Loungers wearing their G8s would be appreciated, since I can't find any of people actually wearing them on the web. I'm sorry for all of the questions, but there really isn't a ton of information about the G8 (Type 440) out there.

    Thank you to all of the Loungers whom I've learned so much from over the years, and I'm sure I'll continue to enjoy your information and "conversations" for years to come! KELORGO
     
  2. Stearmen

    Stearmen I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    7,206
    I to have been fascinated by the look of the G8 even if there was never such a jacket. They have a nice between the wars look. I did own a early 90s Cockpit A2 made out of horse hide. A very well made jacket, if not completely accurate. I suspect their G8 would be just fine, since accuracy is not an issue! Other then the M-422 jackets, there are no pre war Navy leather jackets, so this is as close as you will get without a custom made or an original jacket.
     
  3. kiltie

    kiltie Practically Family

    Messages:
    733
    Location:
    lone star state
    I can't speak to the G8, but US Authentic makes a solid piece of gear. I have a horsehide A-2 made by them, and while it's a little on the thick side for an accurate reproduction, it's very rugged but comes out of the bag really soft for a HH. The finish is...well, it's heavy duty. I don't think it would ever develop the much desired patina without some outside influence, however the grain does come up nicely.
    Also, with USA, you'll want to be mindful of how you want it to fit. For the A-2, you'd probably want to size down for the most authentic fit. I did not, and while this was initially disappointing, I was happy in the long run to have an A-2 I could layer under.
    At any rate, US Authentic makes a really solid product, from my experience, and I'd recommend them without hesitation for the price range they offer.

    Pic of my USA A-2 -
    http://i275.photobucket.com/albums/jj290/safdkiltie/IMG_4935.jpg
     
  4. KELORGO

    KELORGO New in Town

    Messages:
    46
    Location:
    USA
    Hi, Stearman. Yes, no manufacturer can claim to have the most accurate G8! I guess there's not much information here on Fedora Lounge or out on the net because the G8 just isn't that popular. I've read that several members here have owned them over the years. Mention had been made of the jacket in the classifieds and mixed-in with some Indy jacket threads. I think the G8 could have had a chance at being an issued jacket, had it been around "back in the day"! There are advantages to closed knitted cuffs and belt lines, such seen in the A2 and G1, but there are also advantages such as wear-resistance and the ability to allow cool air in as needed with open cuffs and waist line jackets like the G8.

    Can anybody give me some guidance between Cockpit and US Authentic as to the quality of their jackets in goatskin, no matter the jacket type? Remember, I'm not looking for historical accuracy, just quality. How about their horsehide jackets?

    Oh, if you're looking for a fantastic G1, give Pop's Leather a shot. Their website isn't the greatest, but the G1 I bought from them is great. The older AN-J-3 I have from Sporty's Pilot Shop is a nice piece as well.
    KELORGO
     
  5. KELORGO

    KELORGO New in Town

    Messages:
    46
    Location:
    USA
    Thanks for the reply Kiltie, I must have been typing my last post when you sent it. That jacket is beautiful! Didn't I just see it listed for sale somewhere? I've been doing so much web surfing lately trying to research jackets... I hope you are the guy who bought it. If not, think about changing your mind and keeping it! I love the color of the jacket as well as the visor on your hat. For some reason the warm rich colors just scream quality and class to me. Thanks for sharing!
     
  6. kiltie

    kiltie Practically Family

    Messages:
    733
    Location:
    lone star state
    You did see that jacket in the classifieds with me as the seller, and it was indeed a difficult decision to put it up for sale. I've recently gone high end, though, having taken receipt of a Bill Kelso Rough Wear in horse and a Good Wear Bronco ( second hand ) in goat. To top it off, so to speak, a Diamond Flighter to replace that crusher. I put a firm but fair price on it, perhaps secretly hoping no one would buy it...

    BK Rough Wear and Diamond Flighter:
    http://i275.photobucket.com/albums/jj290/safdkiltie/ooo.jpg

    Link to GW Bronco ( as I've no pictures of mine yet ):
    http://www.goodwearleather.com/pages/gwbronco_images5.html

    Sorry I can't speak to US Authentic's goatskin, but again, the quality of construction is super solid.
    If I may suggest, you might consider contacting Bill Kelso Mfg about whether or not they would do your jacket up in goat as a custom order. I read recently on another forum that BK was trying to expand their product base, and they're very easy to talk to, to say the least. Really good customer service. From what I've heard, customers have been very satisfied with BK's M422s in goat.
     
    Last edited: Sep 11, 2012
  7. Asienizen

    Asienizen One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    223
    Location:
    Vietnam
    I'd second the endorsement of US Authentic. I got a russet HH A2 from them 2 years ago, and while it is isn't as accurate stitch-for-stitch as a GW, and its leather isn't as "patina" as an Aero - it still is a decent buy for the price. From what I know USA will customize any of their jackets in about any way you like (for a premium of course).
    To my tastes, many of The Cockpit jackets seem to look a little "mall jacket-ish". Does anyone know how much Cockpit will customize their jackets?

    I like the G8 as well. I think if I get it, it will be from US Authentic. Goatskin in general is the most durable, but as I only have a HH from USA, I can't speak about their particular goatskin.

    But why not just send US Authentic and email and ask them your questions. I'm sure they'd answer?
     
  8. KELORGO

    KELORGO New in Town

    Messages:
    46
    Location:
    USA
    I've "spoken" with Shaul at USA three times via email. What I started this thread for was to try to solicit some opinions from Loungers who might have had experience with one or more G8 jackets from different brands and could compare/contrast them for me. From what I've read here and on other sites, USA offers a real nice jacket for the price, especially their horsehide versions.
     
  9. nickgp

    nickgp New in Town

    Messages:
    12
    Location:
    NY
    US Authentic-I have several of their jackets and the quality is awesome
     
  10. Worf

    Worf I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,845
    Location:
    Troy, New York, USA
    I've two custom made U.S. Authentics. You can find the pics on here. I've a Custom "Indy" in Black HH and a 50's Halfbelt custom. Love em both. May get sleeve zips on the Halfbelt at some time. Matter of fact he sent me a quote on doing that today.

    Worf
     
  11. lewisskimonster

    lewisskimonster Familiar Face

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    seattle
    Greetings. I have a US Authentic G8 and it is very good quality. Very nice dark goatskin. I am 6'2" and weight 200lbs and ordered a 46R, and it fits like a glove.
     
  12. KELORGO

    KELORGO New in Town

    Messages:
    46
    Location:
    USA
    Lewisskimonster,

    Would you be able to post a photo or two of you wearing your USA G8. I don't know that I've actually seen anything other than a side shot of someone actually wearing a G8 jacket. I'd love to see it from the front.
    KELORGO
     
  13. lewisskimonster

    lewisskimonster Familiar Face

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    seattle
    Kelorgo

    I'll see what I can do. I am pretty much illeterate when it comes to computer savy. I'm dating myself, but I don't even own, or ever have had a cell phone. My wife is much better at that stuff, and I'll try and enlist her help. I can say that I like my G8 better in person, than the pics on US Authentics web site. I felt confident buying from Saul, as they have a good reputation here on the lounge, and have a very liberal return policy. I talked to Saul over the phone and he suggested the size for me. I would have bought the same jacket if I had been there to try it on first.
     
  14. KELORGO

    KELORGO New in Town

    Messages:
    46
    Location:
    USA
    Lewisskimonster,

    Don't go out of your way to get pictures. I don't blame you for not owning a cell phone. I held out for as long as I could, but my job and my two growing sons forced the issue and I had to relent. I just looked at an email from my buddy that showed different groups of teens in various places (beach, football game, riding in a car, on a date, etc.) and most of the kids are clue-less about their surroundings while texting on their phones. The caption was from Einstein and said something like "I fear the day when technology overtakes humanity. We will be living in a generation of idiots". Well said, Albert, well said!
     
  15. eckhartus

    eckhartus Familiar Face

    Messages:
    57
    Location:
    france
    There is an avirex G-8 jacket on eBay.
    [​IMG]
     
  16. lewisskimonster

    lewisskimonster Familiar Face

    Messages:
    74
    Location:
    seattle
    The US Authentic version of this jacket has a one piece back
     
  17. Fordsparks

    Fordsparks New in Town

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Illinois
    First off, new poster here.

    From what little info I find, something like the Type 440 may have been issued, as was a 'G8', although the G8 was a button front jacket, similar to the A-1, and was not like the Type 440. I'm finding that solely from the 'Hell Bent on Leather' book.

    I guess the official word is that neither is a valid designation. And I find no period photos, as I'm sure many have searched for.

    Guess I'm still just trying to justify an 'authentic' jacket purchase!
     
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2012
  18. Fletch

    Fletch I'll Lock Up

    US-A uses good goat, supple and fine-grained. (I own an A-2 in goat, and a goat-trimmed AN-J-4 and M-444.)

    The one US-W goat jacket (Indy) that I own is serviceable, but does have a "goaty" odor.

    I'd choose US-A over US-W.
     
  19. Fordsparks

    Fordsparks New in Town

    Messages:
    3
    Location:
    Illinois
    My only experience with US-A is a D-1 I bought second-hand last year. It seems very well made.

    The US-Wings G8 is a Cockpit USA jacket, I believe. The US-W jackets made here in the USA I think are made by Schott, but for all I know they source their hides from the same place as Cockpit USA. I have a Cockpit ANJ-4 which is great, though it's the only ANJ-4 I've seen. The ANJ-4 US-A offers looks great.

    The US-A jackets all seem to be priced very reasonably for customs.
     
  20. Seb Lucas

    Seb Lucas I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    7,575
    Location:
    Australia
    My understanding is that Neil Cooper designed this jacket as a mythical "between the wars" flying jacket. I heard it was in the 1970's, but I think it's more likely it was the early 1980's after the Indiana Jones films got everyone interested in brown leather. The design is not far off the look of many utiltiy jackets of the 1930's-40's.
     

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