The GREAT BRITISH DUFFEL COAT thread

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by Alan Eardley, Oct 24, 2007.

  1. Alan Eardley

    Alan Eardley One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,500
    Location:
    Midlands, UK
    I was at a trade fair in South China last week and was suprised to see a Ralph Lauren duffle coat. Surprised partly because it doesn't seem to fit the semi-tropical climate, surprised even more because it was a reasonable copy of a 'first pattern' WW2 duffle coat, as worn in the Royal Navy. These are rare and go for a lot of money in unissued condition/

    Unfortunately, I was even more surprised by the price of the RL - the equivalent of around 1000 GBP. You can still get unissued late war/post war 'second pattern' duffle coats (as worn in the film version of 'The Cruel Sea') for around 15 GBP.

    Any other duffle coat fans out there?

    Alan
     
  2. John Lever

    John Lever One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,513
    Location:
    Southern England
    Strange about the RL coat. I saw that style of their site yesterday
    here
    http://www.ralphlauren.com/family/i...&jackets=&cp=1760781&categoryId=1760818&SMR=1

    RL also make a Kanal jacket. There is one at auction now here -

    http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/ws/eBayISAPI....m=160171605352&ssPageName=STRK:MEWA:IT&ih=006

    As for Duffle coats. I like them. They have a timeless grunge type elegance !

    A couple of years ago the local military shop had some beige ones from the Long Range Desert Group . They were a bit manky but a collector would probably value the link if true.
     
  3. Smithy

    Smithy I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,137
    Location:
    Norway
    I like them Alan. I wore them a lot in winter when I was a kid. I really would love to pick up an RN one some time.
     
  4. Doug C

    Doug C Practically Family

    Messages:
    729
    I love 'em too, just sold one that was a bit too small for me. I think Gloverall makes some of the best ones, but J Crew has a cool cotton one for $400 and it's resin coated: http://www.jcrew.com/catalog/product.jhtml?id=prod87396271&catId=cat240078

    One thing I don't like about traditional Duffles though is the detachable hoods, I much prefer a permanent hood without a normal collar visible - the one I sold had a permanent one...hard to come by.

    Doug C
     
  5. Micawber

    Micawber A-List Customer

    Messages:
    389
    Location:
    Great Britain.
    I don't think I've worn a Duffle coat since the winter of 1963.
     
  6. Tomasso

    Tomasso Incurably Addicted

    Messages:
    13,719
    Location:
    USA
    Sulka offered one of the better duffel coats, with horn buttons and leather trim.



    [​IMG]
     
  7. Spitfire

    Spitfire I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,078
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark.
    I wore mine yesterday. Wrote the story about it in another thread here. Overcoats. Here it is in all it's cosy glory - and a limited edition.

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    Bought it in 1980 - and still love it.
     
  8. Smithy

    Smithy I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,137
    Location:
    Norway
    That's a beauty Spitfire! And still in beautiful condition :eusa_clap
     
  9. Alan Eardley

    Alan Eardley One Too Many

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    1,500
    Location:
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    By 'eck! That was a winter, that was!

    Alan
     
  10. Alan Eardley

    Alan Eardley One Too Many

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    But a traditional duffle coat (by which I mean a military one) doesn't have a detachable hood or a collar.

    In my opinion, once you've had a proper military duffle, you won't settle for a civilian one again. They make any civilian version seem soft and flimsy.

    Alan
     
  11. Spitfire

    Spitfire I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,078
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark.
    Mine is a Gloverall - made of the traditional cloth from WWII - story behind it was "they had found some old rolls of the original cloth, and to celeberate the start of WWII, Cloverall made a limitede number of coats from that exact cloth."
    Believe the marketingscam, call it whatever - fact is, it's a beautifull, warm, traditional RN coat.:D
     
  12. Alan Eardley

    Alan Eardley One Too Many

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    Location:
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    I'm prepared to believe it. As far as I casn see form the photos, the cut of your coat is very much like the 'second pattern' late/post-war military (e.g. RN) duffle, as featured in The Cruel Sea and other immediately post-war British films. It's hard to see the details, but the buttons seem to be different - a very minor detail. Does it have the cotton tape with buttonholes inside the hood to adjust it? The material looks to be lighter in colour than the unissued examples I have seen and owned, but this could be the photos. In any case, it's a fine coat. Unissued originals run at about 15 GBP at the moment.

    Alan
     
  13. Spitfire

    Spitfire I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    5,078
    Location:
    Copenhagen, Denmark.
    On this close up you can see the cottontapes inside the hood.

    [​IMG]

    15 GBP is not much for a great overcoat like this! As far as I remember I payed much more back then...:eusa_doh:
     
  14. Speedster

    Speedster Practically Family

    Messages:
    876
    Location:
    60 km west of København
    I like duffle coats as well. Back in the days when Spitfire bought his limited edition Gloverall i wanted exactly the same one, but didn't have the money at the time. And when i had, the coats had all gone.

    My son (6 years old) has a duffle coat though

    Would really like to have an unissued RN duffle coat some day, but surplus stores in Denmark do not have such things.
     
  15. Alan Eardley

    Alan Eardley One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,500
    Location:
    Midlands, UK
    The only difference I can see between your coat and an original (apart, possibly from the colour) is that the originals have a strip of cotton tape around the inside of the hood (from which the strip of adjusting tape emerges) whereas the equivalent feature of your excellent Gloverall appears to be in the same material as the outer. Most of the ex-WW2 RN duffle coats were 'used up' by beatniks and intellectuals (usually CND) in the 50s, but they still appear in surplus shops in the UK.

    Alan
     
  16. Hemingway Jones

    Hemingway Jones I'll Lock Up Bartender

    Messages:
    6,098
    Location:
    Acton, Massachusetts
    I have a modern one from Burberry that I love. My favorite duffle coat was worn by Trevor Howard in "The Third Man."

    Spitfire, yours is a beauty!
     
  17. Alan Eardley

    Alan Eardley One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,500
    Location:
    Midlands, UK
    A major price hike...

    I visited a local surplus store over the week-end and they've put the price of RN duffle coats up from 15 GBP to 20 GBP. This is a scandal! Seems the guy has discovered the WWW (what we computer people call a 'late adopter') and has looked at some prices. Drat! I knew this would happen. It happened to gas mask bags (they are 40 GBP on some sites now), next it will be 'submariners' jerseys' up to 20 GBP and before you know it 'Ghurka shorts' will be the same!

    Alan
     
  18. Alan Eardley

    Alan Eardley One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,500
    Location:
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    Here's a rare item...

    ...a World War 1 Royal Navy duffle coat (and some people say they didn't exist!) This picture is from the RN Submarine Museum and the caption reads:
    "A photograph of Lieutenant Basil Beal wearing foul weather gear, taken in 1914. Beal stands on the fore casing of HMS B1 wearing typical foul weather clothing of the period. A ‘Lammy’ or ‘Duffle’ coat is worn over the uniform jacket, together with leather gauntlets and heavy sea boots.... Beal was one of the earliest officers to specialise in submarines. He was killed in March 1917, whilst in command of HMS E49 when the submarine hit a German mine off the Shetland Islands".

    [​IMG]
     
    Ticklishchap likes this.
  19. soulquentin

    soulquentin New in Town

    Messages:
    14
    Location:
    Aachen, Germany
    hi there,
    this is my first post at this forum.
    i just came across this post because i actually have been looking for those rn duffle coats for quite a while now. as i live in germany, surplus stores do not stock those coats. i searched the internet for them as well and all the online-shops i found were out of stock or charging very high prices.
    so reading that rn duffle coats are still available for that little money, i almost couldn't believe my eyes...
    dear alan: does the surplus store you mentioned have a website? or next time you happen to go there, would you be willing to purchase one for me and post it to germany? i'm really desperate to get one of these coats, especially if they are in unissued condition;)
    cheers, soulquentin
     
  20. Alan Eardley

    Alan Eardley One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,500
    Location:
    Midlands, UK
    Hello, and welcome to the forum.

    No, the shop doesn't have a website. I think the owner has only recently obtained a computer!

    Yes, I could probably obtain one for you if the seller has one left, but you realise that the cost of shipping to Germany would be very large due to the weight and size? They are available on the web for 50 GBP.

    Alan

     

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