Vinyl or horsehide?

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by regius, May 20, 2020.

  1. regius

    regius Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,637
    Location:
    New York
    After years and dozens of hands on experiences, I couldn’t believe the confusion I’m in with this jacket...it really gnaws at me. So, I bought this on eBay, English vintage seller, a German 60-70s MC jacket, really cool on photo (and in person), mint condition, black moleskin lining and Reis zippers (do they make them still?). One problem is, I have a feeling this is NOT LEATHER!!
     
  2. regius

    regius Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,637
    Location:
    New York
    Photos: it has white undertone, there are panels with grain, it absorbs water too. But it’s very stiff and smooth.
     
  3. Carlos840

    Carlos840 My Mail is Forwarded Here

    Messages:
    3,194
    Location:
    London
    no photos...
     
    Psant25 likes this.
  4. handymike

    handymike I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    7,091
    Location:
    SoCal
    Is it the seller with “the door”?
     
    Claybertrand and ton312 like this.
  5. Tom71

    Tom71 A-List Customer

    Messages:
    325
    Location:
    Europe
    No photos showing, but if it feels and looks like vinyl it’s probably Vanson comp weight.
    (Sorry guys, I just couldn’t contain myself...)
     
  6. regius

    regius Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,637
    Location:
    New York
    Yes! The U.K. seller with the door, although there are two of them it seems
     

    Attached Files:

  7. Carlos840

    Carlos840 My Mail is Forwarded Here

    Messages:
    3,194
    Location:
    London
    The wear at the wrists and along the main zipper look like leather, hard to say for sure.
     
    Lebowski and ton312 like this.
  8. AeroFan_07

    AeroFan_07 Call Me a Cab

    Messages:
    2,898
    Location:
    Iowa
    In the photo below, all the features I circled in blue remind me of being leather...
    upload_2020-5-20_15-56-18.png

    That said, I hope you did not pay a lot for it, as the rest of it kind of does look like vinyl. Does it smell at all (vinyl does not seem to adsorb smells, so even if it got smoked in, it still may barley smell at all.).
     
  9. Monitor

    Monitor

    Messages:
    11,260
    There's just no way that's vinyl. I mean, new Vanson looks more artificial. There wouldn't be any cracking in different color if it was vinyl. Don't think there's anything to worry about.
     
    navetsea likes this.
  10. ton312

    ton312

    Messages:
    10,421
    Location:
    Chicago
    Yeah there’s grain in it too (zipper pic). That’s leather. The vinyl jackets of that age always have cracks in the collar and I’ve never seen one with any kind of natural grain like that.
     
    Lebowski likes this.
  11. jglf

    jglf Familiar Face

    Messages:
    67
    Location:
    USA
    It could just be a pigmented or corrected grain leather with a “plasticky” finish/coating.
     
  12. Will Zach

    Will Zach Practically Family

    Messages:
    944
    Location:
    Northeast USA
    Fixed it for ya. Just kidding guys, don't kill me!!! :)
     
    ton312 likes this.
  13. Worf

    Worf I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,716
    Location:
    Troy, New York, USA
    Saw the title and thought you were talking about recordings.... No vinyl for moi... never. When I was a kid and you had a "Pleather" coat or jacket... you were run out the neighborhood and quick.

    Worf
     
  14. navetsea

    navetsea I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    4,211
    Location:
    East Java
    are you sweating buckets in it?
    there are worn area along the zipper so it is leather. maybe just the coating is too thick so it creases like plastic
     
    regius likes this.
  15. zebedee

    zebedee One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,414
    Location:
    Bristol, UK
    If we can find out how it stretches when unlined, we can tell ya. :)
     
    Carlos840 likes this.
  16. handymike

    handymike I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    7,091
    Location:
    SoCal
    I think you have one similar to mine!!!
    I was stoked when I bought this “vintage 1940s-50s German Leather jacket” from the same seller...until I washed it...(it smelled of mold)...hard as cardboard now, and grey/white undertones all over...if it’s real leather it sure is crappy. Plus I think it’s actually 1980s
    image.jpg
    image.jpg
    image.jpg
     
    Last edited: May 21, 2020
    AeroFan_07 likes this.
  17. Lebowski

    Lebowski One Too Many

    Messages:
    1,043
    Reg, the jacket shown above looks like cheap too coated leather, but it doesn’t look like vinyl at all. It isn’t vinyl.
    Have no idea about it’s real period, though @handymike is probably right.
     
  18. hatsRme

    hatsRme I'll Lock Up

    Messages:
    9,856
    Location:
    Boston area
    Years ago I had the education of working in a "vinyl and urethane coated fabric" factory (translation: fake leather).

    Leather may be forever, but vinyl is final.
     
    AeroFan_07 likes this.
  19. Feraud

    Feraud Bartender

    Messages:
    17,192
    Location:
    Hardlucksville, NY
    Ah yes. I remember the stigma of "pleather". Once in a while the wife or I might reference pleather garments. It is never a compliment.
     
    Worf likes this.
  20. Claybertrand

    Claybertrand One of the Regulars

    Messages:
    258
    You SHOULD be able to accurately identify leather vs vinyl by applying some conditional to a small area and seeing if it absorbs. I'm speaking of a more liquid---personally I use Lexol. There is no reason Plastic would absorb leather conditioner.

    That said, my anecdote---a couple years back, I bought a jacket from the MAN WITH THE FILTHY DOOR, aka Paul Smith, aka whatever eBay/Etsy alias he is currently operating under. The jacket I bought is what I believe to be maybe 60s-70s Soviet Era Czech made brand called Gala. I have seen a few of them sold by this Seller and have seen others pop up from time to time. When I received it, it was like a plastic Serving Tray from a fast food eatery. Stiff, cold, plastic feeling, shiny ALL the things vinyl is and leather generally isn't (especially older leather).

    I tried several tests on it and still felt like I was possibly duped. To add to the confusion, the jacket, though old, was literally pristine!! Yeah, I know, Pristine Jacket--FILTHY DOOR!?!?!?!???????????? Its hard to reconcile the two for sure.

    Anyway, I brought the jacket to 2 tailors---one who mainly does clothing and another who only works with leather. The clothing tailor AND EVERYONE WORKING IN HER SHOP swore it was PLEATHER and that I got taken. They offered no reasoning really. The leather tailor answered almost mockingly, "OF COURSE IT's LEATHER!!!!!!!!!!!! What did you THINK it was!?!?!!?!?!?!?!" He said it was tanned/dyed in a method not really used anymore and that it was just old and had been stored and not conditioned. He said it looked like it had been frozen or stored in extreme cold. He advised to slowly condition it and let the conditioner really soak in before even wearing it. SO, I did apply countless thin layers of Lexol to it and only applied more when it was absorbed.

    It was almost shocking that it actually absorbed into the leather. It turned out plyable and much more leather like in feel but not in texture. It still has that surface shine and that plastic feeling finish to a degree. It falls into the rare category in my collection called "I CAN'T BELIEVE ITS ACTUALLY LEATHER!" I really think has to do with likely lower end leather of SOME kind being crudely processed with an archaic pigment dyeing technique. It makes the leather seem like NAUGAHYDE. In the case of my jacket, I chalk it up to the clunky and usually outdated manufacturing techniques employed by the Soviets and Soviet Bloc Eastern Euro countries under their rule.

    Regarding this particular jacket from the OP, its production date sounds like it may have been the same era. Same mole hair interior as mine. I wouldn't be surprised it was made in the GDR in the 70s. The manufacturing would likely be the same methods used on my jacket.

    Here is a pic of my jacket for reference

    [​IMG]
     

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.