1940s Civilian Air Associates B-2 leather flight jacket

This vintage jacket was made in Kansas City, Missouri, as a civilian version of the US army B-2 Flight jacket, issued in the early 1930s, and replaced by the B-3 in 1934. The army version was made of horsehide, with a single breast pocket, attached belt zippered cuffs on the inside of the wrist, and a full alpaca lining and mouton collar. This jacket was produced with a civilian label and a few alterations to the pattern. This jacket is made from capeskin, and with handwarmer pockets instead the large breast patch pocket that was universally removed from the army production version. This jacket has an off-center Talon main zipper, with bell-shaped slider and unmarked diagonal-stripe sunburst stopbox. The sleeves have zipper cuffs, with early pattern United Carr snaps and bell shaped talon zippers. The jacket has heavy wear, and the label has been partially worn away. The remaining text reads “aviation” and “Kansas City Mo”. There is a remnant of what looks to be a wing logo. The size tag is of the black and yellow design used on military jackets, and the pocket linings are the distinctive shade of twill used in the linings of A-2 jackets. These details point to this jacket having been made as part of a specialized civilian aviator’s line by a manufacturer which held a military jacket contract.

Chest (pit to pit): 21-1/2″ (doubled = 43″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 16″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 24″
Length (base of collar to hem): 22″

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WWII German theatre made USAAF A-2 leather flight jacket

This vintage A-2 leather flight jacket was made in the 1940s, either at the end of the war or during occupation. A-2s ceased to be produced in 1943, but remained popular with servicemen. Theatre made examples like this are rare, but were commissioned by Americans who wanted a jacket that was no longer available through official channels. It is made to the A-2 pattern, with a shirt style collar secured by snaps, flapped, snapped patch pockets, knit cuffs and collar, and a zipper front with a wind flap. The jacket has a one piece back and two piece sleeves. The jacket has war-time German hardware, with a Zipp main zipper (with the back marked DRP, which stands for Deutschers ReichsPatent, and points to a 1945 or before dating of manufacture of the zipper). All the snaps are PRYM brand. The jacket is lined with a typically German plaid, which has been heavily worn and has been patched.

Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 19″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 26″
Length (base of collar to end of waistband): 24″

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Original Perry A-2 horsehide flight jacket

This vintage leather flight jacket was made by the Perry Sportswear company of Newburgh, New York. It is made of horsehide leather. The jacket has a pinlock Conmar zipper, United Carr ball-style snaps and grommets under the arms. The pockets have square reinforcement stitching, rounded corners, and shallowly scalloped pocket flaps. The arm has some period artwork on it for the 5th Air Corps. Unlike most, which were painted, this one is branded onto the leather.

Chest (pit to pit): 41″
Shoulder to shoulder: 17-1/2″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 20-1/2″ (missing knit cuffs, so will be longer once replaced)
Length (base of collar to end of waistband): 23-1/2″

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Battered A-2

This vintage A-2 leather flight jacket was made during the 1940s. It has a spring-loaded zipper introduced in 1943 by Crown. This type, with “two-way” teeth, was designed exclusively for the military with larger versions finding their way onto the turrets of bombers to keep the wind out. Featuring this late-war military zipper, the jacket may have been private purchase. Snaps are of a ball style, and were made by Rau of Providence, Rhode Island, and have exposed backs. Pockets have nicely scalloped flaps, with the size tag stitched on the inside. The collar is long and pointed, and is attached directly to the body of the jacket The leather jacket hanger is off-center, stitched with “X” style stitching. The jacket has a khaki liner, which is in very good shape. Unfortunately, the original tag is long since missing.

Chest (pit to pit): 21″
Shoulder to shoulder: 17″
Sleeve (shoulder to end of knit cuff): 24-1/2″
Length (base of collar to end of knit cuff): 23″

Also see: https://vintagehaberdashers.com/2013/03/08/original-a2-leather-jacket/

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Gibson and Barnes A-2

This is an older Gibson & Barnes reproduction of a WWII Army Air Corps A-2 flight jacket. It is made of heavy russet brown leather, with dark brown knits. The pockets are authentic patch style, not the hand-warmer style they are currently using. The jacket has a one piece back. The jacket has a Scovill Gripper Zipper and Scovill snaps. The tag is long since missing, but the cut, detailing, hardware, and liner color and material identify it as an older G&B.

Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to Shoulder: 19″
Sleeve (shoulder to end of knit cuff): 25″
Length (to end of knit waistband): 24″

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Early 1940s half-belt leather jacket

This vintage leather jacket was made in the early 1940s. Unfortunately, the maker’s tag is long gone, but it can be fairly accurately dated using other details. In one of the pockets is a union tag from the Amalgamated Clothing Workers of America. The last digit of the tag is mis-printed, but I believe it’s a 1939 tag, not a 1936. This puts the dating between 1939, when that tag first came into usage, and 1949, when it was replaced by a different design. The zipper is a spring loaded crown zipper, of the type used in the early 1940s, notably on several contracts of Army Air Force A-2 flight jackets. That narrows the dating from about 1939 to 1945.

The leather, still nicely soft and supple, has developed a nice fade and patina from its original russet brown color through decades of wear. The wear is heaviest on the neck of the collar, the hem and the cuffs. The jacket’s design is a classic: half belt back with side belt adjusters. The back has pleats to bring it in at the waist. On the front, there are two small flapped pockets, with double stitching to give them the look of patch pockets. Above them are buttoned, vertical chest pockets. The pockets are lined in a soft cotton flannel, and are presumably designed as hand-warmers. The body of the jacket is lined with plaid cotton in cream, blue and brown, and the sleeves in plain cotton.

Chest (pit to pit): 23″ (doubled = 46″)
Shoulder to shoulder: 18″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 25″
Length (base of collar to hem): 28″

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Original A2 leather jacket


This vintage A-2 jacket was made in 1942 as part of the Dubow contract no. 27798. It started out life as a russet horsehide, but was reissued during the war and re-dyed a seal brown at that point. The jacket bears stitch marks from a squadron patch on the breast, and from bars on the epaulettes. Also visible are stitch marks from a previous name tag, slightly offset from the current one, which reads W.S. Butler. In 1983, the jacket received a new Talon zipper, and a brightly colored lining. The zipper still works fine, but you may want to replace it for authenticity’s sake. The replacement liner is ugly, in poor condition, and should definitely be replaced. During the re-line, the jacket lost its original contract tag and leather hanger. I believe the knits, or at least the cuff knits, may be replacements from this period as well. The leather bears signs of heavy use in the collar and shoulders. Otherwise, the leather is in surprisingly nice condition, and has been freshly conditioned. With a chest measurement of 22″, the jacket fits at around a size 40 to 42.

Chest (pit to pit): 22″ (doubled = 44″)
Shoulder to Shoulder: 18″
Shoulder to end of knit: 24-1/2″
Length down back (bottom of collar to end of knit): 23″












Rough Wear reproduction A2 jacket

http://www.ebay.com/itm/271144854806This jacket is a recent reproduction of a WWII USAAF leather jacket. It is made of horsehide leather, with knit cuffs and a cotton liner.  The tag is for a Rough Wear contract, and puts the size as a 44, though it fits smaller. The leather appears to be spray dyed, with some scuffs to the finish to the edges; see the photo of the epaulette. Chest (pit to pit): 22″
Shoulder to Shoulder: 18″
Sleeve (shoulder to end of cuff): 25-1/2″   Photobucket








Monarch leather jacket

This vintage leather jacket was made by the Monarch company, a legendary leather jacket company of the golden era, who held an A-2 contract during the war.  This is an aviator / motorcycle style, with an asymmetrical front zip , two flapped pockets, and two map pockets.  It has epaulettes, belted sleeve cuffs, and a bi-swing half-belted back.  The main zip is a triple marked sunburst Talon. The tab on the male side (the side without the puller) is missing.  It’s still zip-able, but it takes a little bit to get the teeth to mesh initially.  The chain zippers on the two map pockets are also talons. There are two ventilation grommets under each arm.  The jacket is made of colt leather, a type of horsehide.  There is damage to the cuffs, and cracking to the collar.  The left shoulder has some flaking and the lining has wear and some moth damage.  This jacket has been worn and has acquired a fantastic patina over the years.
Chest: 22″
Sleeve (shoulder to cuff): 25″
Shoulder to Shoulder: 18″

 Top of Collar to Hem: 28″