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Like a Phoenix...Bill’s Old G-1

Atticus Finch

Call Me a Cab
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2,717
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Coastal North Carolina, USA
BF9DDA99-947D-4BBA-B0CB-B6A7E1615E01.jpeg



This is my my new/old, no-name G-1.

About four or five years ago, a friend called and said he had an old “bomber jacket” he’d like to give me. He’d found it hanging in his barn where he’d left it decades ago. When he showed up with it a few days later, it was almost unrecognizable as being a leather jacket. It was so dried and covered with grime, it was grey instead of brown. No kidding, it was about the same color as old asphalt. And it was so stiff, it would easily stand vertically on its own, without support. The cuffs and waistband were in tatters and it stank of oil and sawdust. The tag was missing...but from the synthetic collar and modern brass zipper, I guessed the jacket to be an early-eighties, E-series G-1. Not a particularly collectable jacket, even in mint condition.

My friend couldn’t remember exactly when he got the jacket, but he said it was a long time ago. Around here, in the days before the internet, to “obtain” a real G-1, one usually had to know someone in the supply department at Cherry Point. My friend was in the North Carolina Senate in those days...so he likely had the right connections...but I can’t be sure this is where Bill came by the jacket. I thanked him for the jacket, but I doubted that it could be saved. And, anyhow, it looked smaller than my normal size. So I just stood it in the back of my closet and forgot about it.

A year or so later, I decided to try my hand at restoring it. I had little to lose. After all, the jacket had no historical value and I hadn’t paid anything for it. I started by washing it in the washing machine with a strong detergent. Twice. The washing worked wonders. When I’d finished, the jacket was not only clean, but it was brown again...and it didn’t stink. At least, not as badly as before. I let it dry for several days and then treated it with gobs of Pecard Leather Dressing. In fact, I left the Pecard on the leather for a month or so. This made the jacket much more pliable and soft. So much so, it actually felt like a jacket instead of a board, and it would no longer stand up on its own. But I was right. It was too small. And I wasn’t going to incur the expense of replacing the knits on an E-series G-1 that didn’t fit me. So I put it back in my closet and forgot about it, again.

But the story has a happy ending. In 2015, I retired. I was no longer chained to a desk and a courtroom, so I became more active and lost weight. Suddenly, wearing Bill’s old G-1 became a viable idea. So last week I bought some mil spec knits on eBay, had my seamstress install them...and, just in time for fall, got a new favorite jacket.

AF
 
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Big J

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2,966
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Japan
Congratulations on a job well done AF!
And congratulations on losing a few lb's!

If I may ask, could you let me know the ebay I.D. of the person you bought knits from please?
 

thor

One Too Many
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1,954
Location
NYC, NY
Cool jacket and I'm glad the resurrection of this G-1 was a success @Atticus Finch !
My guess is that's she's a 1973-1975 Star Sportswear G-1; that peculiar elongated rectangular zipper is the same style zip as on my '73 Star G-1 (as well as afew other Star G-1 examples I've seen on the internet).
Whatever she may be, you've done a fine job bringing her back from the brink!
 

WhiskeyTangoFox

One of the Regulars
Messages
157
Location
Iowa, U.S.A.
What a great story! Thanks for sharing it with us. I would never have guessed that the jacket in the photo was in that kind of condition when you first got it. The restoration really turned out well. Enjoy wearing it!

Noel
 

Peter 1956

One of the Regulars
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115
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UK
Great Job there! Looks fab. I am no expert but I have a 1980s Brill which has the same type of zipper. Might narrow it down a bit perhaps
 

Atticus Finch

Call Me a Cab
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2,717
Location
Coastal North Carolina, USA
Cool jacket and I'm glad the resurrection of this G-1 was a success @Atticus Finch !
My guess is that's she's a 1973-1975 Star Sportswear G-1; that peculiar elongated rectangular zipper is the same style zip as on my '73 Star G-1 (as well as afew other Star G-1 examples I've seen on the internet).
Whatever she may be, you've done a fine job bringing her back from the brink!

Interesting! I had guessed it to be an early eighties jacket, but I wasn’t at all sure. The shell is embossed cowhide, but it’s much thinner and of higher quality than the thick, squeaky hides if the 70’s Imperial Leather G-1s. In fact, if I didn’t know better, I’d swear it was goat. If this jacket is a Star Sportswear, it’ll be the forth Star that I’ve owned. All were/are great jackets!

AF
 
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Peter 1956

One of the Regulars
Messages
115
Location
UK
I have 2 1976 Imperial s and must be the only one who loves them! Tough as boots and I got used to the sleeks ha ha!


Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk
 

Atticus Finch

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2,717
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Coastal North Carolina, USA
This is a rather blurry photo of Bill’s Jacket’s zipper showing the large “G” stamped into the bottom stop. I wonder what brand is this zipper. @thor, I just glanced through the internet and saw several seventies jackets sporting this zipper, two were 1975 Stars.

AF




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