THE SUNBODY ASSOCIATION

Discussion in 'Hats' started by RBH, Jan 3, 2009.

  1. Just A Hat Rack

    Just A Hat Rack A-List Customer

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    Thanks for the input. For the sake of savings I'll probably lean toward the 3" standard palm. I have a cotton outback hat with a 2.5" brim, and would like something a bit wider. I wish the oak came in the 3" variety, but the color isn't a huge deal to me, especially at the price difference. I don't ever plan on wearing it as a dress hat. Outside of work I might throw it on if I'm venturing out somewhere. I will probably have some eyelets inserted to help with keeping my noggin a bit cooler. It also helps that the hats are dunkable, so if need be I would have that option.

    Which leads me to another question. I read that when you soak the hat, you can reshape it. Is this typically done by hand, or with tools? I have no tools or equipment for doing so. I know its a different animal (ha!), but I wouldn't mind tweaking my Akubra a little as well. Thanks again, and whenever I pull the trigger, I will definitely post pics.

    Ryan
     
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  2. RJR

    RJR

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    Unless you're making a rather extreme change your hands,and patience,should do.
     
  3. Zombie_61

    Zombie_61 I'll Lock Up

    I'm a little surprised that Sunbody doesn't explain the difference on their website; if they have, I haven't found it. After looking at some of their photos, it seems the difference is in the appearance of the finished hats with the "fine palm" hats being a bit smoother and having a closer resemblance to traditional Panama hats.

    Their crowns could be at least a little taller, but I really wish they would produce hats with crowns that have less (or no) taper. Since they don't, I'm assuming there's something about their process or the palms they use that would prevent the hats from sliding off of a non-tapered block.

    Brim width? Yeah, as I've mentioned upthread my 2-1/2" brim is just under 2-5/8" on the sides and 2-3/4" front and back. I'd rather have a little more brim than a little less brim, so I'm fine with that. :cool:

    They're definitely warmer than most straw hats, but still cooler than a fur felt when the temperatures and humidity levels are high. And, of course, better sun protection than most straw hats. Since I wear my hats for sun protection, I happily accept that trade-off. Speaking from personal experience, it's a lot easier to wash off a little sweat than it is to have cancer carved off of you.

    I agree with Bob/RJR. Unless you're seriously re-working the hat, your hands should be the only tools you'll need.

    I soaked my Sunbody in a sink filled with lukewarm tap water for two to three minutes (as best I can remember) to make sure it was good and wet, and I was a little surprised by how easy it was to shape. The downside of soaking it so thoroughly was that it took several hours to dry completely, but that time also allowed me to monitor it's shape as it dried and make little changes as needed. The foam-padded cotton sweatband and the palm around it was the last to dry, so I wore the hat for the last couple of hours and it conformed to the shape of my head rather nicely.

    I still wish the crown was less tapered, but all things considered I'm very happy with the hat I received and will order another one (maybe a different style) when finances permit. I'd also recommend ordering from One 2 mini Ranch if they carry the style you want and have your hat in stock--better prices and excellent service!
     
    Last edited: Jun 5, 2018
  4. Just A Hat Rack

    Just A Hat Rack A-List Customer

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    Buckeye Nation
    Thanks for the advice Zombie. I actually read all of your posts above, and it took quite some time, so forgive me if I ask anything that you've already stated. The hat you landed on looks nice, and I like the band you chose for it. However that model doesn't come with a 3" brim. That's my target size, and if I had to choose different I would probably go bigger. I went to the One 2 Mini Ranch site, and that's pretty much the only fedora that they have that suits my fancy, and they don't carry my size anyway. That's going by their advice of buying a size larger (I normally wear 7 1/2"). In any case, I'll keep poking around for a 3" brim. Oak would be nice but from what I've seen, I'm not going to bite at the $30 price increase.
     
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  5. Just A Hat Rack

    Just A Hat Rack A-List Customer

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    I am not sure how much crown height you would lose in bashing a crown, but I did see on the Sunbody website they have 3" brim (among others) open crowns in both the standard and fine palm. I didn't see any in the oak color. The crown on the standard palm was 5 1/4", and 5 1/2" on the fine. I have no experience in this, but I thought I'd throw that out there for those who are disappointed with some of the crown heights and tapers who may not have seen them on their site.
     
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  6. Zombie_61

    Zombie_61 I'll Lock Up

    I had originally decided on their "Fedora - 3" Brim" hat that, on their website, allows you to choose brim widths in half inch increments from 2-1/2" up to 5", and up to 6" maximum. Ultimately I chose their "2-1/2 inch brim Oak-colored Tear Drop" hat because I thought I'd like the color more and I was going to order a 2-1/2" brim on the first hat anyway, and when I saw the lower price on the One 2 Mini Ranch site that sealed the deal for me. If I knew then what I know now, I would probably have stuck with the first hat because the "Oak colored" palm reminds me a little of the inexpensive straw hats you can find at any store that sells gardening supplies.

    I wear size 7-1/2 as well, and after some deliberation that's the size I ordered. After soaking it, shaping it, and wearing it a few times, it did shrink a little, resulting in a fit that's snug but not uncomfortable. If it shrinks more over time I'll probably soak it again and let it dry on my hat jack to stretch it out a little, but for me I think going up a size as Sunbody suggests might have resulted in a hat that was looser than I'd prefer.
     
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  7. Just A Hat Rack

    Just A Hat Rack A-List Customer

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    I agree with you that the oak color somewhat resembles the cheap variety you'd find at stores. I think it looks nice, but that was something that honestly had crossed my mind before. I don't know if it's the way the hats are presented on the website or what, but something about the natural color gives me pause as well. I don't know if it's the color itself or the unrefined nature of the hat, especially being the standard palm. I guess I need to see some pics to get a better feel. I'll have to scour back through the thread to see what's there. All that being said, and I guess it comes down to personal preference, I do think your 2.5" oak looks nice on you.
     
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  8. Zombie_61

    Zombie_61 I'll Lock Up

    Sunbody's hats definitely don't have the refinement of an actual Panama hat, but their primary goal is to make hats that meet their UPF 50+ rating so I understand that from a manufacturing perspective. And after looking closely at their "bleached" hats the color seems to be the only difference. The braid on their "fine palm" hats does appear to result in a texture that's smoother regardless of color, so I agree with you--it comes down to personal preference.

    And thank you for the compliment! I really like this hat and I'm happy I was able to shape it how I wanted it. I was a little concerned when I first opened the box and saw how flat the brim was, but I think it shaped up rather well.
     
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  9. Just A Hat Rack

    Just A Hat Rack A-List Customer

    Messages:
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    Location:
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    I finally received my SunBody in the mail the other day. Sparing all the details, they had originally sent me the wrong hat. After a swap and a little bit of time, all is well now.

    I ordered a medium crown cattleman with a 3 1/2" brim in the standard palm. These hats are neat little buggers. You can soak and shape them however you'd like. The palm seems very durable for a straw. As mentioned previously, it is quite unrefined. It would definitely not work as a dress hat, but would easily pass for casual wear. I'm usually a t-shirt wearing kind of guy in the summer, but I would have no problem wearing this hat with a polo or maybe even some sort of button down, so long as I wasn't trying to look dressed up.

    For lack of a better way of phrasing it, there are a couple of down sides to the hat. The headband seems to be very cheap, and moves easily on the crown. It serves it's purpose, but an upgrade to a higher quality band or pug is recommended. I know SunBody offers different headbands for a price, but I have no knowledge of their quality. Another thing is the crown height. It's sufficient, but adding another 1/4 to 1/2 inches would be a major improvement. Another issue I'm having, and maybe it's evident in the photos, but there seems to be a bit of a droop of the brim coming off the crown before it hits the brim shape. It's not major, but I can be a fuddy duddy about those types of things. It shapes well when wet, but as it dries it develops the drooping effect. I should also add that since the palm is thick, it tends to be a heavier hat than my felt. It is in no way bothersome or uncomfortable, but it is definitely noticable especially when the hat is wet. I hope my criticisms don't outweigh the positives. If I were ever in the market for another hat like this, I would definitely buy another SunBody.

    My size is a 60, and that is the size that I ordered. It fits well. The sweat is comfortable and formed nicely to my head after soaking, shaping the hat and wearing it for a bit. Out of the box it had a bit of a cowboy curl near the front of the brim. The Raylan Givens hat from Justified was my inspiration for how I tried forming it. For the most part I think it turned out well. Given the thickness in the palm, I would recommend having eyelets installed seeing as it doesn't breathe well through the weave. It doesn't seem like a hot hat to wear for me, but it's definitely not airy. I would definitely recommend SunBody for anyone looking for a straw that looks good given its rugged qualities. They're practically the Akubra equivalent in straws. Some day I will probably give it a fedora style crown, just because I can. I also look forward to the hot days and having a hat that I can soak and plant on my dome piece to keep it cool.

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
    [​IMG][​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  10. deadlyhandsome

    deadlyhandsome I'll Lock Up

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    Looks great. The “brim droop” doesn’t take anything away from the hat.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  11. RJR

    RJR

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    +1
     
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  12. RJR

    RJR

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    Location:
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    Hat-Sunbody Outlaw 5.jpg
    This Outlaw model is fast becoming a favorite.
     
  13. deadlyhandsome

    deadlyhandsome I'll Lock Up

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    My experience with two SunBody hats led me to try a Stetson Palm. Verdict...very similar. I like the sizing of SunBody, but I think the Stetson has a slightly nicer finish even when comparing to the fine palm SunBody.

    Tapatalk won’t let me post photos today.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
  14. Zombie_61

    Zombie_61 I'll Lock Up

    [​IMG]

    Taking the difference in material into consideration, I'd say you nailed it. Bonus points for the hat and the style looking so good on you! If I wore a hat with a brim that wide, I'd look like an opened umbrella. :p
     
  15. deadlyhandsome

    deadlyhandsome I'll Lock Up

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    Tapatalk got the photo posting worked out. My Stetson Palm mentioned earlier:

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    [​IMG]

    These hats are a lot of fun to shape and reshape. I can say from past experience that they do NOT take to reblocking if you want to remove some of the taper.


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  16. Zombie_61

    Zombie_61 I'll Lock Up

    As far as appearance and "finish" that Stetson looks a lot like a Sunbody, right down to the cloth sweatband. How do they compare "in person"?
     
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  17. deadlyhandsome

    deadlyhandsome I'll Lock Up

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    There really isn’t any meaningful difference. I think the Stetson is a bit “smoother” but the difference isn’t enough to choose one over the other. I do like that SunBody comes in fractional sizes rather than small, medium, large etc.




    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
     
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  18. Just A Hat Rack

    Just A Hat Rack A-List Customer

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    You'd be surprised what you'd find under a wide brim! I can understand that many may be hesitant in going wide, but after getting used to seeing yourself in one it can really change your mind. I get that it may not be in everyone's taste, but I have yet to see someone with a wide brim that didn't look right.

    Thanks for the side by side comparison and the compliments! I actually took some of the pinch out of the front and back of the crown to give it a bit of a taller look. That's why it's not clearly visible in the pic, but it is definitely still noticable in person.

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
     
    Last edited: Aug 10, 2018
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  19. Just A Hat Rack

    Just A Hat Rack A-List Customer

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    The hat appears very bright on my phone, so it's hard to gauge the "finish" of the hat. From the pics of the underside, it does seem very comparable to the SunBody, albeit a tad smoother. Do they seem as tough/thick? Are they able to be soaked like a SunBody? It's a nice looking hat!

    Sent from my Pixel XL using Tapatalk
     
  20. Zombie_61

    Zombie_61 I'll Lock Up

    I could probably be convinced if the right hat came along, but for now I think my Campdrafts with their 2-7/8" brims are about as wide as I want to go, and sometimes I think even that's too wide for me.

    You're welcome! I never watched Justified but I'm at least a little familiar with the hat through posts here on The Lounge, and when you mentioned it I thought I'd check your work out of curiosity and was sincerely impressed by how close the two hats are. I wouldn't attempt those tight creases on the crown of the Justified hat myself with Sunbody's Guatemalan palm out of concern that I might damage it regardless of how malleable it is when it's wet, so I think your crown is shaped just right.
     
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