Thoughts on leather of Schott leather jackets!

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by Phillips88, Aug 31, 2016.

  1. Phillips88

    Phillips88 Familiar Face

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    66
    Most of us know that Schott's leather jackets mostly come in three famous leathers; Steer, Cow, and Horse! Everyone always ask, which is better, stronger, etc.. They all have their pros and cons. I currently have a 6 month old 141 in naked cowhide and in the process of breaking in a new 618 in horse! Both beautiful and well made jackets.

    Monitor and I have briefly talked about something but I wanted to see how everyone else feels about this.

    I found an old post from the Schott forum posted by the original CEO I do believe, Oren Schott. In this post Oren explained the differences between the three leathers. He also mentions that the cow and steer are the SAME hide just the "steer" is terminology for a protective coating applied to the leather. Now from what Iv read and when speaking to Gail directly that when it comes to the naked cowhide, it is a much higher grade hide compared to the steer with fewer imperfections due to not having a sealed top coat protection like the steer does.

    Now this is where I'm asking for opinions because correct me if I'm wrong, I seem to be running into a little contradiction. From what I'm told, you must be careful with what you put on the naked cowhide. From what Gail suggests, VERY LITTLE TO NOTHING and in worse cases Mink's oil only. I personally think it needs conditioning periodically and this is just for protecting herself, protecting the company itself especially from people using the wrong conditioners and trying to blame Schott for their ignorants. Her reason being the chance to harm the leather by clogging the pores of the leather. We'll correct me if I'm wrong but if the cow and steer are the same hides as Oren states, besides the steer having a protective coating and to hide imperfections as Gail states, doesn't this clog the pores too and wouldn't we all be better off with naked cowhide for the longevity if treated properly?

    Oren Schott's original post with link:

    http://www.schottnyc.com/forum/posts/horsehide_perfectos.htm
     
  2. Seb Lucas

    Seb Lucas I'll Lock Up

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    Location:
    Australia
    Some here are not big fans of Schott or their leather so you might get some interesting answers.

    There are lots of diverse reactions to undressed hides (or naked). Johnson Leathers use it and recommend putting dressing on it regularly as it requires more protection. It fades quickly and some will tell you it shrinks when wet. I personally have washed 2 naked hide jackets without any change in size.

    I have a naked hide jacket I've owned for 5 years which has never been treated with dressing. It still looks close to new.

    Steer and cow being the same I've heard several times from a range of sources. Don't know if it is true.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016
  3. Phillips88

    Phillips88 Familiar Face

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    66
    No doubt, I'm sure ill get some different opinions...

    Iv had my naked cowhide for 6 months now but that's been 6 HARD months of daily wear. I accidently got it nearly swimming pool wet when I got caught out in the rain on the bike one day. Absolutely no shrinkage or anything. Honestly, Its better than before. I used a little all natural minks oil after Gail at Schott's recommended it. Like I said, good as new if not better. Common sense Is just trying to tell me a well treated naked cowhide will last right up there with the best of the best especially if you go bu Schott's contradicting replies. Sealed pores, no sealed pores, treatment, no treatment. Who knows...Guess only time will tell.
     
  4. Hmm..seems like the word 'cow' is often used pretty generically in some circles ( look at those 'cows' out in the field ). However, to a midwestern boy (me) a cow is actually a grown heifer of which both are females. A 'steer' is a ball-less bull and a 'bull' hasn't been neutered. Of course there is a true difference in all three hides. From smooth and more spongy cow to a crisper tougher hand grained steer to more marbled heavier grained bull hide. Never heard of the idea that steer was just cow with a protective coating. News to me.
     
    Edward and AeroFan_07 like this.
  5. Phillips88

    Phillips88 Familiar Face

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    66
    Obviously we all should know the difference in cow steer bull ect. But apparently it means something different in Schotts vocabulary. Definitely got me scratching my head too HoosierDaddy
     
  6. Phillips88

    Phillips88 Familiar Face

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    66
    I'm not going to knock Schott. I'm a big fan of their work, leather, and customer service but this isn't the first time they've been accused of false advertising. I myself who also live born and raised in East Tennessee around farms my whole life definitely know the difference in these animals but I just don't know what to believe after reading Orens post. I once saw Gail mention this and someone called her out on it just as we are now but there was never a response...
     
  7. Monitor

    Monitor I'll Lock Up

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    8,926
    It is kinda weird but it's just the terminology Schott is using to differentiate between the two types of leather they're using. It's more like a... line name, a label if you will, than it has to do with actual animal in question. From what I understood, hide with the protective coating is called Steer because it's supposedly a bit stiffer and sturdier. It's a bit confusing 'cause people would naturally assume that Steerhide branded jackets would be made from a bull hide, which is of course not true in Schott's case.

    Also, both Naked Cowhide and Steerhide leather will actually be made from cattle of both sexes. There's no difference between the two, really.

    Their marketing department is actually quite full of it and false advertising is their forte, starting from the biggest bs claim they've made Brando's jacket in The Wild One, but they still make a mean product nonetheless. Then again, pretty much every jacket maker had their share of controversies. . . Except maybe Langlitz.
     
  8. 'It's a bit confusing 'cause people would naturally assume that Steerhide branded jackets would be made from a bull hide'
    ******************************************************

    Why would people naturally assume that? Steer hide is not bull hide. Both have different properties ( I suppose somewhat due to hormones ). Just notice the obvious difference between steer hide & bull hide cowboy boots.
    I would assume that steer hide should actually be steer hide no matter how some might try and spin it.
    The difference in cow hide, steer hide, and bull hide should be readily much more apparent by most makers than the Storse debacle, unless someone is trying to feed everyone a bunch of bull again.
     
  9. Monitor

    Monitor I'll Lock Up

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    No, sorry, I meant to say that people would assume that the jackets with the 'Schott Steerhide' label would be made from male... cow. I'm not sure how the correct livestock terminology works. Not steer or bull per se, just the male animal in question.

    However, I have been told by several people in the business though that once the hide leave a tannery, it is virtually impossible to tell whether the animal it belonged to was male or female. Makes sense to me since it's just as equally hard to distinguish horsehide from equally tanned cow - or steer - hide. As it was evidenced by the Storse debacle as the machinists couldn't tell a difference and didn't know what was going on.
     
  10. Like I said before...If someone can't tell the difference in a pair of cowboy boots ( or anything else ) made from steer hide or especially bull hide then they need a stronger prescription lens in their glasses.
     
  11. Oh I think the machinists knew what was going on, but pressure from the boss caused the Storse to gallop right out the door.
     
  12. How do you think Ken determined what customer jackets to remake? He certainly didn't send them all out to a lab. What he did do was immediately recognize the difference and bite the bullet to try and make amends right in the middle of a needless costly deliberate mess.
     
    Guppy likes this.
  13. AdeeC

    AdeeC Practically Family

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    646
    Location:
    Australia
    Well a cow is usually for milking or breeding purposes so it will likely live to a good long age. A steer will go to the abattoir at a young age when ready for slaughter. So there may be a quality or properties difference in the hides due to age of the beast. I guess bull leather is similar to cow if age is a consideration. I know that some commercial leather called bullhide is the heavy thick pebbly leather found around the neck of the beast and used for boots and belts mostly but not sure if it comes from both sexes.
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016
  14. Bull hide...a hide from a mature ( male sex ) bull ( thus the name bull hide ) with balls... mens-cowboy-boots-handmade-elephant-bull-hide-53720.jpg
     
  15. Monitor

    Monitor I'll Lock Up

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    Storse galloping out the door had me chuckle. Anyway, if I remember correctly (and I may be wrong), I believe even Ken himself stated that he hasn't been aware of what the previous management was up to and how the only thing that alerted them was the stampede of returned jackets, from people who would insist that their jackets were weird because random parts and panels of a jacket would develop grain and generally age at a different rate and in a different manner. It was only then that Aero learned of the forbidden rituals that summoned these monstrosities into physical plane of existence.

    With time, horsehide and steerhide will begin to age differently... After even more time, they're both back at looking the same, leaving us with only speculations and wild guessing. And science. And Andy Falzon know knows the secret arts of being able to tell leathers apart.
     
    ton312 likes this.
  16. ton312

    ton312 I'll Lock Up

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    Location:
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    I'm no expert but the only difference of note for me between (different makers mind you) is evident only with wear over time. The CXL FQHH and steer are identical in finish, close enough in weight and grain...not discernible to the naked eye...especially when new. My new FQHH HB is as grainy as my Bootlegger in steer but it's become notably different over time ( grain on the BL is much more pronounced). My Vanson cow is remarkably smooth and a shit ton heavier than both. For me, any of these could've been labeled in any way and I'd take it at face value.
    Having only owned a handful of Schott jackets to me the naked cow is the thickest, the steer is the stiffest and the HH is somewhere in between. Full disclosure...I wear contact lenses.
     
    Edward and Monitor like this.
  17. TREEMAN

    TREEMAN One Too Many

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    Location:
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    I've had this conversation with Gail on Schott's forum more than once. There cowhide is called that because it does not have a protective coating. There steerhide is called that because it does have a protective coating. That's all there is to it. They have no idea what sex the hide is when it gets to the cutting table. In my 641 the tag says GENUINE STEERHIDE LEATHER...dosen't mean it is. There HH could be either sex also....they have no idea, nor do they care..........
     
    Monitor likes this.
  18. Monitor

    Monitor I'll Lock Up

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    Exactly what I've been told and said earlier. It's just terminology for the different styles and leathers but the gender of the animal whose hide has passed through the tannery will remain a mystery forever. Cutters don't know, machinists don't have a clue, hardware people don't even care... So neither should we. :D

    Wasn't it Vanson that stated they're using leather from both male and female cow for their Competition Weight Cowhide??
     
  19. Monitor

    Monitor I'll Lock Up

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    8,926
    Thank you! That's exactly how it went and why even the freaking owner of the place wasn't aware that something was wrong with the jackets leaving the company for delivery. I'm betting you that even today, there are people who still aren't aware that their jackets are a storse.
     
  20. Ken didn't take a stampede of returning jackets. He clearly asked for detailed up-close pictures of jackets so he could determine if they were a mixture of HH and steer or not. If his knowledgeable decision was that it indeed turned out a mismatch by the previous manager (while Ken was retired) he would consider a refund or remake. Coming out of retirement he found a deliberate mess to deal with. He took the honest way out rather than the cheaper easier way of suggesting that some curious customers were imagining things.
    After confronting Will ( appointed manager ), Will's attitude was mainly 'So What'. Shortly after that his house was raided because of stolen Aero goods. Much more than dishonestly selling something that was not as advertised, which was bad enough.
    HD
     
    Last edited: Sep 1, 2016

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