Y'2 Leathers

Discussion in 'Outerwear' started by mangothehuman, Oct 27, 2020.

  1. ton312

    ton312

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    That would be far more helpful. A thread with pictures to illustrate your beliefs would be valuable to members who are considering these brands.
     
  2. Marc mndt

    Marc mndt One Too Many

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    Apologies accepted.

    That would be a great addition to the forum. Looking forward to reading your insights.
     
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  3. dannyk

    dannyk One Too Many

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    Thanks for apologizing. I value your opinions, we just operate with a level of respect for different opinions. Let’s see and read yours without agitation. That would be great. Thanks.
     
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  4. Marc mndt

    Marc mndt One Too Many

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    Thank you for jumping in. I appreciate TFL most because it's members refrain from insulting / attacking one another and instead have meaningful discussion.
     
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  5. mangothehuman

    mangothehuman New in Town

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    Lot of passion on this thread! I appreciate the comments.

    Truth be told, I don't have a way to view their jackets in person, so I am going off of Instagram and retailer photos and their marketing materials, all of which look great. So, first hand opinions of the brand and products is most helpful in my decision process.

    I'm not looking for a generational investment piece in a jacket. Just something that I enjoy wearing and watching it age. Quality is very important, so is the cut and fit is the jacket. A lot of brands focus on traditional, boxy, styles, which would not be very flattering in my opinion. I also am not a motorcyclist, so not trying to put off that vibe.

    Y'2 claims they've been around since 1998 and have 40 years of experience in the leather industry. I personally like that their leathers are on the lighter weight because I live in a warm climate. I also thought hand dying sounded unique and I liked some of their takes on denim jacket design.

    Definitely open to other options, hence the post.
     
    dannyk and Marc mndt like this.
  6. handymike

    handymike I'll Lock Up

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    I think the point is that despite the high cost, there are 2 tiers in Japanese leather jackets. Expensive and really Expensive- and, if your going to jump into it you might as well go all in for the best because the lower rung isn’t worth the hype compared to other makers we can access.
     
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  7. Mich486

    Mich486 One Too Many

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    ^Agree. Imho those Y’2 jackets fall into the second tier.
     
  8. Edward

    Edward Bartender

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    Location:
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    Thanks, folks, for all reining it back and keeping things civil. It's much appreciated by the management.

    As to my own opinions, perceived value is a fascinating thing. The reality of any consumer product is that the law of diminishing returns kicks in, and very quickly at a certain point you end up paying more and more for smaller and smaller increments of improvement. When it comes to certain things - such as design (as opposed to quality of materials), it goes way out into subjective territory. Are French seams better than regular? That's very much a personal choice. Ditto Shinky or Horween, or steer, horse or goat. Denim or leather. Different properties, all of which will suit different folks differently. I don't like lamb because of its fragility; other folks prize its lightness in warm weather and have never felt the need to baby their lamb jackets. Neither is 'wrong'. Some jacket properties - quality of hardware, accurateness to milspec - are objective. Very few, though. Some hides are significantly more expensive because of rarity rather than any inherent properties, which brings in the subjectivity of the market.

    Value for money considerations will come into it for most of us - I imagine there are few indeed who don't have to think about what they are spending. Most of us have limits on what we can put into a jacket based on fixed income versus all the regular bills of running a home with or without dependents in the mix. The way I see it, we're fortunate indeed to live in a time when there is so much of a range of choice available, and whether we choose, settle for, or prefer Schott, Eastman, Aero, Y2K, Johnson, Lewis or whatever, we're far more fortunate than at least have the planet to have that within reach. It's just like when I first got into guitars. I always knew there was no ceiling on what a guitar can cost. And, as with leather jackets, there will always be some far beyond what I would be comfortable spending. A Gibson Les Paul Custom is way beyond what I'd be comfortable spending. Is it better than my old American Stratocaster? Are a pair of Role Club engineer boots better than a Schott Perfecto jacket? Totally different animals. Is a Fender custom shop guitar better than my old Strat? Quite likely. It's also about six times the price. Is it worth six times the price to me? Only if I suddenly came into millions such that the difference in price became negligible, relatively speaking. (If I earned ten times what I do, I'd never fly standard again.) Does knowing there is "better" out there make me enjoy my old Strat any less? No. Is my guitar rendered in any way inferior for the purposes for which I bought it? No. Maybe if I was a professional player it might be different (though interestingly most of the pros I've known in the industry are perfectly happy with cheaper instruments most of the time), or another, wealthier hobbyist might feel different. It's really all relative. And let's not even get start on perceived value, where certain luxury goods have their retail price inflated in order to better sell them. As incredible as that might seem, in some markets you can be "too cheap". My brother is a programmer. At one time the company had a software product that was far better than anything else on the market and cheaper, but couldn't keep up with sales. Marketing consultants' advice? Double the price. They did. Result? Couldn't package it fast enough. Gibson had a similar experience with Les Pauls at the end of the eighties.

    Turning the same principles back to jackets, its' always great to learn more about what is available and the differences. Whether something more expensive is worth the difference after a certain price point will never be more than subjective opinion. Everyone has to decide for themselves at what point they bow out of the price-scale, which will be a mix both of what one can afford and what value one perceives in an item. I could certainly afford a much more expensive Indy jacket than my Wested, but the Wested does everything I want of it so I feel no need to spend more. Where price limits do come in, well, that's life. With experience we all learn what our ceiling is and become confident enough not to feel inferior in our choices if we spend less but we get what we enjoy, it fits our needs and we are happy.
     
  9. diabel

    diabel New in Town

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    Location:
    San Jose, Ca
    So are you saying that Y'2 leather doesn't use the same quality horsehide as does e.g. Freewheelers? I was wondering about this too considering large price difference. This most likely is the case as high quality horsehide is very, very expensive- retail $260+ USD per one Shinki hide. Also areas like the lining and stich density and evenness most likely are lesser too. All that said it would be good to get some quantifiable data points on all these dimensions so we know how the manufacturers stack up. I actually like Y'2 leathers designs so as long as they fit me and I know what I'm getting I'm ok with the tradeoffs.
     
  10. Marc mndt

    Marc mndt One Too Many

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    I know shinki hh is highly regarded and I must admit, it's something special. But that doesn't mean anything other than shinki hh is bad. My Thedi is made from Italian horsehide and I absolutely love it. I wouldn't say it's of lesser quality, it's just different.

    I don't know about the horsehide Y2 uses but I can't imagine it's bad. What are the characteristics of a bad hh anyway? More imperfections? Less vibrant colors?

    I've read somewhere that freewheelers adds their own finish to the shinki leather. I guess that will add to the price as well.
     
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  11. diabel

    diabel New in Town

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    Location:
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    I didn't mean to imply that Shinki horsehide or all Shinki horsehides are/perform better than other high-end hides. Some Italian horsehides are highly regarded and expensive. Also there are different Shinki hides and grades see -https://hashimotoindustry.com/en/customer_cat/shinki_hikaku/. Horsehide and other leather as well are sold as quality 1, 2 (based on imperfections) etc. So if company x uses Shinki Standard horse it, is not the same as Shinki antique horse. Also additional processing like softening the hides or some special finish clearly will cost more due to additional/specialized processing.
     
    Marc mndt likes this.
  12. ton312

    ton312

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    I really enjoy your perspective Marc. You always seem to be very balanced and fair in your appraisals. I appreciate that.
     
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  13. Colin G

    Colin G Practically Family

    Messages:
    989
    Location:
    Canada
    I'm looking at my Freewheelers and Rainbow Country jackets side by side and can't see any real difference in leather quality and finish between them. All have what appears to be an aniline or semi-aniline finish. The leather feels and smells the same between them also. I have a hunch that both brands come out of the RC factory.

    A lot of the horsehide comes from Canada and I'd bet is sent to most of the tanneries like Horween, Shinki, Badalassi ect..

    http://bdmglobal.com/en/portfolio/horse-hide/
     
  14. Marc mndt

    Marc mndt One Too Many

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    This one looks so cool. E3CE2646-0036-4B35-A01B-C62881CED930.jpeg
     
  15. Blackadder

    Blackadder Call Me a Cab

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    Location:
    China
    My understanding is
    1) Y'2 indeed has been in the industry for a very long time. They make leather jackets for a lot of other brands as well. They likely started as OEM many years ago.
    2) Y'2 uses different leather for their jackets, their normal range HH usually has pretty shinny coating. Their limited models do often have different type of HH. If someone is looking for leather that ages like say shiniki, they would be disappointed by the normal HH Y'2 uses.
    3) The issue of pricing depends very much on where one lives. An Eastman or Aero jacket costs more than a normal range Y'2 in Japan.
    4) RM came into fame in the 90s and they did not use shiniki back then and only started using shiniki some time after they ended their deal with the Few. The Few does not use shiniki and yet their jackets and the jackets they made for RM have been held in high regards despite that.
    5) Shiniki is not the best leather in the world. It is just that the Japanese repro manufacturers are obsessed with making their repros as close to the original as possible. Just as they spent tons of time and money on reproducing denim that looks and feels like old denim from 40s and 50s, shiniki is what they found to look and feel as close to the leather used on the 40-50s HH jackets as possible.
    6) FW's owner and RC's owner all have worked with or at RM at some point. Story is FW's owner was responsible for the Joe McCoy line and RC's owner was involved in RM's leather goods. RC seems to have its own leather factory but not FW. If you look at the repro jeans brands, almost all of the current brands came out of Denime and Evisu. Many of these brands are somehow related given that it is a niche market. RM's current owner scooped up RM and Denime when they went into financial trouble.
    IMO, Y'2 is not bad at all. It has lots of different models. For example, if you want a leather Levi's type 1 or 2, there aren't many alternatives. If you want a indigo leather Levi's type 1 or 2, you basically have no other choice in Japan.
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2020
  16. diabel

    diabel New in Town

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    Location:
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    Informative post. So where Y'2 sources the horsehide leather from? Also who makes the leather jackets for FWs?
     
  17. red devil

    red devil Call Me a Cab

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    The FW jackets are produced in the RC factory, I have had this mentionned by more than one Japanese professional so it is likely to be true.

    @mangothehuman , if I was looking for something in this style, I would go with Thedi
     
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  18. Blackadder

    Blackadder Call Me a Cab

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    Location:
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    I have no idea where Y'2 sources their HH. The only comment I can offer is that the Y'2 normal range HH is almost the same as the HH used on almost all the older Japanese repro jackets. It seems to be the prevalent type of HH in Japan (but not the Few perhaps because it is In NZ) before the shiniki. My very old Toyo Enterprise HH jacket uses those very rigid and shinny HH. I have seen those HH on older Blue Paint and Garuda leather jackets.
    Don't wanna sidetrack but the Geruga collection seems quite nice and not as pricey as some other brands. So perhaps as an alternative?
    https://hunger.jp/ec/products/list.php?category_id=30
     
    Last edited: Nov 1, 2020
    ton312 likes this.
  19. ton312

    ton312

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    The way you describe those older HH Japanese jackets really reminds me of my vintage excelled. Thick hide with heavy painted top coat. Very stiff, prone to crack, etc.
     
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  20. ericsanpablo31

    ericsanpablo31 Familiar Face

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    Location:
    Vancouver
    Interesting! Curious what you know about Sugar Cane leather jackets and their origin? Is your Toyo jacket on the same level in terms of quality, leather, build as a RM in your opinion?
     

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