Hidden in Plain Schott: the 613SH Perfecto

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by Aloysius, Oct 18, 2021.

  1. Aloysius

    Aloysius One of the Regulars

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    As mentioned yesterday in WAYWT, I picked up a 613SH yesterday from the factory sale. [Before you get your hopes up, and line up to get one at 70% off, the 613SH was not a clearance sale item; I bought it from stock. There were CXL 613s in the clearance area though…]

    Jason Schott, David Schott, their other family members (not public-facing so I won't name them), and the rest of the staff were just fantastic.

    There isn't all that much information about this jacket online, apart from a few scraps spread across TFL and the Schott forums, so I'm hoping to rectify this.

    It's been a long path to the jacket and– in the end– it was the vehement contempt for Schott and their leather from much of the site (with some notable exceptions like @Monitor and @Carlos840) that convinced me [by reaction] that I wanted the Perfecto, rather than just a Perfecto-inspired jacket from elsewhere. I had sort of tacitly accepted the Schott stigma for years, then realized I had no actual basis for it– having avoided the brand as a result.

    I first tried on couple of models (the 618HH and 619) at a shop but while they were enough to make it quite clear that these were the peer of more expensive brands I'd gone for first, neither was quite the jacket I was looking for (though my experience trying them out gave me a frame for sizing reference that was valuable when I was looking at spec sheets for other Schotts.)

    The 613S seemed to be the ticket, because it had the 'retro Perfecto' features without being a pure fashion jacket (626), pre-distressed (PER70), or alpha-sized (519, 626, the entire PER line). I'm not against those jackets, but I wanted my first Perfecto to do it all, and this covered it.

    A quick initial note: despite it often being described as a 'slim' model as shorthand, the 613S doesn't fit more slimly than the 613/618 overall. It's a more rectangular back panel, like that on the pre-80s jackets, but completely comparable in fit. Schott's advice to size up one from your measured chest size is well taken. (It is not 'size up for the stereotypical slouchy American fit'.) I'm a 40 in most jackets and coats, including slim ones, but went 42 for this.

    The chest measures an inch wider than 'fits' on comparable DRs, but doesn't feel so, probably because it has the 5.5oz quilted lining and I'm comparing to jackets with fabric liners.

    I took a few phone photos in the morning light to highlight the jacket while it is still essentially new. (It was completely uncreased and unworn when it was pulled out of a bag at the factory and handed to me.) Not that anyone will see, but the 613S(H) has the label that Perfecto jackets had from the late 60s to about 71.


    IMG_1577.jpg

    It's true that the jacket just has a 4.5" drop, but this problem (which I was a little concerned about) has proved to not be much of one in wear. It doesn't feel baggy when worn open, and when worn closed the belt will cinch it an additional four inches.

    Speaking of the belt, it has a nice solid buckle. I'd planned to switch it out for a mitered one but this feels so good in hand that I'm in no rush.

    It's stitched under the kidney panel, which does a good job of holding the jacket close. I made this one black and white so the leather's grain shows a bit better.

    IMG_1582.jpg

    IMG_1580.jpg
    I think a lot of people are under the impression that Schott's steerhide and horsehide are practically corrected grain, because it's not very scrotal-looking, but there's natural grain (separate from creases) that's quite comparable to the horsehide used by others like Eastman.

    I don't have the thick leather fixation that many online do, but this jacket is substantial and will take a lot of breaking in. It's noticeably thicker than CXL, which I didn't wear there (I didn't want to wear a leather jacket there and have it accidentally taken while I was trying something on) but I compared firsthand with a CXL jacket that was there.

    IMG_1581.jpg

    The bi-swing is highly functional. I have a lot of range of movement in this pattern and, while the underarm footballs of the modern 613/618 would give me further reach, this is definitely not just an aesthetic shoulder detail. If you look in the mirror while raising and stretching out your arms, you can see them at work. The arms are also oriented such that one is very much in comfortable position with them forward.

    I'm happy to take more pictures and answer questions as this jacket gets broken in more. The 613S(H) needs a lot more attention from the 'enthusiast' community. It checks boxes that jackets twice the price do not, without being in any way a compromise.

    I'm still excited for my upcoming Ridley… but had I had a chance to try the Schotts first, I wonder if I would have gone for something totally different as an Aero order, because while I love and respect Aero, I don't know that it would necessarily be better as a double rider.

    This is where it lands compared to my Japanese jackets as well, I think. They're finer in some respects, but I don't know that I'd necessarily say they're better, since there is clearly excellent construction and pattern work here. I continue to enjoy both.
     
    Last edited: Oct 18, 2021
    Al 916, TREEMAN, navetsea and 11 others like this.
  2. Bfd70

    Bfd70 Call Me a Cab

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    “Scrotal looking” that’s gonna ruin grain pix for a while.
     
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  3. Aloysius

    Aloysius One of the Regulars

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    A joke, though not one I started. Teasing the tendency to regard all but the very grainiest hides as bad leather.
     
  4. gmcd

    gmcd Familiar Face

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    yep...I think it was maybe ton or somebody a while back who coined "nut-sacky" and I've never recovered
     
  5. TooManyHatsOnlyOneHead

    TooManyHatsOnlyOneHead One Too Many

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    1,614
    Great write up and I agree. I tried one on in the LA store. Took everything I had (including leaving the wallet at home LOL) not to buy one. Got close on Ebay once, but the seller changed his mind. Although I found myself preferring down a size to get a really snug fit. But looking back, with an almost 42 chest, a size 40 would have given zero room for error, and a 42 was acceptable, maybe just a tad bit on the loose side for my tastes. Typical Schott issue where I'm in between, but this one was closer than all others I've tried.

    There's something about the total package (cut, leather, fit, details) that I haven't found in any other Schott. Ultimately, it was too close to my beloved 118, so I'd have to sell that to get this one, and then at that point, I'm just chasing unicorns. I'll probably call it a day and add stars to my 118. But if that jacket ever goes missing, no doubt a 613sh would be the first jacket I'd considering replacing it in that slot (belt, epaulette, classic Perfecto). Otherwise I got overkill in the cross zip department (2 Ridley, Commando, 118, Lightning, and a TBD Field Leather), so can't even consider. But the little devil on my shoulder occasionally still searches Ebay for one LOL.
     
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  6. Aloysius

    Aloysius One of the Regulars

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    Is it still possible to re-title threads? I just realized this went up by the placeholder I’d typed, and I forgot to change it while I was writing?
     
  7. Mrfrown

    Mrfrown Practically Family

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    994
    As long as the little edit button is still there you can, but it disappears at some point

    Nice write up and pics, thanks for the perspective.

    I also like Schott. Haven't had this model, but I really liked the leather and overall vibe on the 141 I had
     
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  8. Aloysius

    Aloysius One of the Regulars

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    271
    Thanks! I had been trying to edit in the wrong place (hence all the 'edit' attempts on the original post).
     
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  9. robrinay

    robrinay One Too Many

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    Good write up thank you- I also like Schott and I’ve got a d pocket in horse to prove it.
     
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  10. Canuck Panda

    Canuck Panda Practically Family

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    Great review! That sales event must been fun. Great that the family were out meeting the customers.
     
  11. AeroFan_07

    AeroFan_07 I'll Lock Up

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    Nice review. Thanks for taking the time here. Agreed this model does not get a ton of press here. I would consider one in the future, however for me, and my general "temperature" I prefer removable "insulated" linings, or simply un-insulated jackets.

    That said, this one is really a deal overall these days. It would be a challenge to me to decide between the 618 SH and 618 HH as there is about $120 difference in price. Did you also try out the Horsehide model?
     
  12. Aloysius

    Aloysius One of the Regulars

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    271
    They weren't just meeting the customers– Jason was manning the floor the whole time, David was the one who grabbed me two belts when I asked (I didn't know it was David until Jason mentioned), and Jason's family were the people who checked me out!

    The 613SH is a horsehide jacket (it's the horsehide version of the 613S). I'll give some background here (and probably integrate some version of it into the main post after people have asked more questions).

    The 613 and the 618 are the modern continuation of Schott's double rider jackets. They are the same jacket, except for some aesthetic details (the lapel stars, collar studs, and button design). Both are the same pattern which includes an underarm gusset added in the 80s for easier movement while riding and are made in high quality leathers but with a water/abrasion resistant coating. The coating seems to rub a lot of online jacket fans the wrong way, but as I showed above, you can certainly still see the grain through it, and I think Monitor is spot on when he says our beloved vintage riders were made of coated leather like this– and other repros are emulating the look of worn-in leather.

    A good analogue is the (late) Cone White Oak denim milled in North Carolina. As vintage Levi's will show, it looks amazing when worn in and faded. But it was a tough, hard-wearing denim, and of course no workman wants his uniform fabric looking worn out and faded after just a few wears. Many of the denims used in reproduction jeans are designed to fade to the look of very old denim very quickly. Similar situation, I think.

    The 613/618 are available in steerhide (613 and 618) or horsehide (613H and 618HH). The horsehide used on the latter isn't super thick, but it's very nice. Think Vicenza with the water resistance of CXL. I tried on the 618HH while visiting Franklin and Poe in Philadelphia and it's a very nice jacket.

    The 613S is basically the 1960s-70s model; similar overall fit to the modern, but no underarm gussets, which means the upper arm is slimmer, and the back panel is a bit more rectangular. The 613S is also available in horsehide (613SH), which is the version I bought, however the horsehide used is significantly heftier than that of the 613H/618HH.

    This is actually noted on Schott's product pages, which list the steer 613, 618, 613S and horse 613H and 613HH as 'Stiff', but the 613SH as 'Extra Stiff'.

    I'm not usually a 'heavy leather or bust' guy, but something about the 613SH's horsehide is incredibly impressive. It really does feel like you're putting on a heavy duty jacket from back in the day.

    As for the insulation, I think it's a YMMV situation. I had some trepidation about the quilted lining as well, but I've been wearing the jacket most of the time since I got home from Schott, to help with breaking it in, and I haven't felt particularly hot. (I tend to run hot, so this surprised me, especially since all the 600 series jackets have the 5.5 oz quilted lining). I don't think it would prove much of a hindrance in weather that's leather friendly. It's certainly not winter quilted jacket insulation.
     
  13. AeroFan_07

    AeroFan_07 I'll Lock Up

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    ^^Nice! Thanks for the clarification and leathers, as well as the perspective on the lining.

    Glad you got the whole family experance being there at Schott. This means a lot to me these days.
     
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  14. Mrfrown

    Mrfrown Practically Family

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    994
    Is the kidney panel area stiff?

    The one enduring issue that I have with my Bates crosszip is that dang stiff kidney panel.

    Also I agree about the idea of broken-in vintage motorcycle leathers originally being top coated and worn in. Can a leather that’s made to wear in fast possibly have the same longevity? It seems unlikely
     
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  15. ton312

    ton312

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    That hide looks incredible! That will age beautifully.
     
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  16. Aloysius

    Aloysius One of the Regulars

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    Feels quite pliable.
    1FB44773-4DED-4344-B685-D1FC69F57944.jpeg
     
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  17. hondurasdave47

    hondurasdave47 Practically Family

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    Great write up! Now, time for fit pics! :D
     
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  18. Aloysius

    Aloysius One of the Regulars

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    I don’t think that’ll do any good. It feels like it fits well (apart from the very much in progress break in), which I say as someone who has and loves many slim jackets, but I’m sure if I posted, I’d be told I should have sized down.
     
  19. ton312

    ton312

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    Hey, I should always size up...be the yin to my yang and post some fit pics! Jacket like that needs to be seen "on"!
     
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  20. Aloysius

    Aloysius One of the Regulars

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    271

    Worn open
    EFF110D8-C74C-4D04-A5B3-8B1E5257716D.jpeg

    (Guest starring Buzz Rickson’s, Snoopy, and Sugar Cane)

    Zipped up
    4D647B8E-1AFB-4D0F-A726-4516FE3CE03F.jpeg

    Zipped and cinched
    AFA1B971-9176-4858-BD9A-40EE6CC89DDB.jpeg

    Some context for picking this size: I tried on the 618HH in 40 and the P613 in M (same measurements as 40), which felt at a pattern level a little too constricting in movement, so the 613S pattern being slightly trimmer and the hide being considerably thicker made the step up to 42 seem more reasonable.

    Interested in getting the 519 in M at some point (basically a size 40 613S in soft steerhide.)
     

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