Buttoned Pocket Flaps A-2 Jackets

Discussion in 'Vintage' started by 33-1729, Sep 6, 2017.

  1. 33-1729

    33-1729 Member

    Messages:
    68
    From the original documents used for clearance of A-2 specification, 94-3040, there are three contracts listed as already procured, and the spec. states in section III "All button holes shall be leather faced."

    upload_2017-9-6_8-45-26.png

    I wouldn't be surprised if a collector already has a Werber 32-6225 (or Goldsmith 31-1897), since so many were re-lined and we originally thought only one contract previously existed (Security 32-485).

    From the original pictures we may be able to pick up the detail differences between the types, so we know where to look for identifying differences. Anyone find them yet? Please post it here.

    An original lined example would confirm the manufacturer, but maybe someone looked at the unlined version while restoring and already saw the internal construction differences between the makers and it just didn't register at the time. It you have two and the construction is different between the two, BINGO! Please let us know.
     
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  2. B-Man2

    B-Man2 Active Member

    Messages:
    766
    Just when we thought that we had most of this information pinned down.......we're surprised with new data.
    The history of this stuff is fascinating. The hunt is on.......!!
    Great work by the way!
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017
  3. Steve27752

    Steve27752 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,172
    Location:
    Berkshire, U.K.
    Excellent research.
     
  4. Roughwear

    Roughwear Well-Known Member

    There are very few labelled Security A-2s around today and there will be more without a label or that have been relined. But how many in total is anyone's guess. Goldsmith produced a fraction of the number and it is possible a very few may still exist, but without the label. If a labelled one existed it is likely to have been flagged up by now. You would expect some Werbers to be around going on the production number. It would certainly be interesting to compare pictures of alleged Security A2s.
     
  5. 2BM2K

    2BM2K Active Member

    Messages:
    189
    Location:
    Sussex
    The next Werber contract, 33-1729, used light brown knits which could mean that the Werber button contract also had light brown knits.

    With this in mind I have been trying to find period original photo's showing such details.

    As yet all I have found is this one but even so the photo is not clear and difficult to be sure that it has buttons.

    4645128110_535e9205fb_z.jpg

    Enhanced version;

    enhanced.jpg
     
  6. Kennyz

    Kennyz Member

    Messages:
    109
    Location:
    USA
    The one in the center appears to have buttons, 2BM2K.

    Ken
     
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  7. Silver Surfer

    Silver Surfer Well-Known Member

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    1,973
    fer sure
     
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  8. B-Man2

    B-Man2 Active Member

    Messages:
    766
    I'm betting that the fellow on the right definitely looks like he sanded his jacket. Very uniformed wear down into the leather . The tanning surface has been removed from the leather. A close zoom in on the enhanced photo gives it away. Besides this jacket would had to have seen years of hard use to get it to that stage of wear. He probably only had a few years on it at the point this picture was taken.
     
    Last edited: Sep 6, 2017
  9. Steve27752

    Steve27752 Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    1,172
    Location:
    Berkshire, U.K.
    Looking at the dark cuffs, I wonder if the jacket on the right is a light Caramel (Russet) colour?
     
  10. 2BM2K

    2BM2K Active Member

    Messages:
    189
    Location:
    Sussex
    There is another image that is intriguing me and that is the Good Wear Header image.

    http://www.goodwearleather.com/images/page_background.jpg

    In the lineup of airmen one jacket has a light coloured waistband but it is not clear if this jacket has buttons or snaps.
    Other jackets can be seen with buttons and darker waistbands.

    A better quality version of the image is needed and if the photo could be dated that might help.

    Update; Have now seen a better quality version of this and the jacket has snaps and is likely to be a 33-1729 contract.
     
    Last edited: Sep 8, 2017
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  11. 2BM2K

    2BM2K Active Member

    Messages:
    189
    Location:
    Sussex
    Another observation on the three seated airmen.

    On all three airmen it is possible to see the inside arm seams. From their positioning
    it looks to me that the jackets have set-in (rotated) sleeves.

    SAT jackets had set-in sleeves.
    No other known A2 contact from the 1930's had set-in sleeves.

    This could mean a couple of things.
    1. The jackets in the photo are all SAT.
    2 The original drawing called for set-in sleeves.
    3 Werber used set-in sleeves but changed the design on later contracts.
     
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  12. 33-1729

    33-1729 Member

    Messages:
    68
    Do others see what I see?

    The post above by 2BM2K has three examples without clear top stitching on the cuffs. When looking at other pictures from the 1930's I see button flapped A-2 jackets with and without clear top stitching on the cuffs.

    upload_2017-9-10_9-43-10.png

    There is a picture in Mr. Eastman's outstanding book of a Security Aviation Togs 32-485 contract with an intact label, but it was re-lined (the first "data plate"). Not certain if the re-lining was done by SAT or the US. Gov. using off-the-shelf replacement material from SAT. Either way, the button flap A-2 jacket in the book does not have clear top stitching on the cuffs.

    I noticed the top stitching at the cuff and shoulder sleeve on a 33-1729 Werber is very clear, even on an original example (data plate 2). Perhaps top stitching is one difference between a SAT and a Werber?

    Roughwear mentioned originally lined SAT 32-485 jackets are quite rare, but hopefully someone can supply a picture. I hope to hear back from someone who has handled a SAT and will post whatever I hear by next weekend.

    Below is a great picture of a button flap A-2 with clear top stitching (given the number I've seen, maybe a Werber 32-6225?).

    upload_2017-9-10_9-44-15.png
     
    Smithy likes this.
  13. Smithy

    Smithy Well-Known Member

    Messages:
    859
    Location:
    Norway
    As I mentioned before I am no A-2 expert so have nothing to add to the research or investigation but I just wanted to say I am thoroughly enjoying all of this.
     
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  14. Spitfireace

    Spitfireace Member

    Messages:
    64
    Location:
    Vancouver
    I would second that!
     
  15. 2BM2K

    2BM2K Active Member

    Messages:
    189
    Location:
    Sussex
    Bear in mind that the SAT in the Eastman Manual has been redyed and had replacement cuffs fitted. A magnifying glass
    reveals a couple of empty stitch holes.

    I believe that top stitching was a requirement on the early A2's, the missing top stitching in the photo is a puzzle.
     
  16. B-Man2

    B-Man2 Active Member

    Messages:
    766
    I am not an authority on A2's either, so I have to ask ... were light caramel knits used only on the 1729 Weber or were they used on other contracts as well. I'm asking because the Eastman photo of the Sat 32-485, shown above in 33-1729's post seems to have the light knits we've associated with the Weber 1729.
     
  17. 2BM2K

    2BM2K Active Member

    Messages:
    189
    Location:
    Sussex
    I think you have misunderstood the photo line-up, there isn't an Eastman photo of the SAT 32-485 in the above post.

    Goodwear have made a repro SAT which should be a good guide as to what one looks like;

    http://www.goodwearleather.com/photos/SecurityAviationTogs_46/
     
  18. Roughwear

    Roughwear Well-Known Member

    The Security A-2 had top stitching at the cuffs. The one in Gary's book is a refurbished example and the sleeves may have been fractionally shortened when the knits were replaced, thereby removing any trace of the empty top stitch holes. Below are pictures of two original Security A2s. The first is from "Full Gear" and the second is from "The Art of the Flight Jacket" and this one has its original labels.

    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG]
     
  19. 33-1729

    33-1729 Member

    Messages:
    68

    Outstanding, Roughwear!

    Exactly what we need. I wasn't certain what was a SAT or not, since we previously thought they were all SAT's, how could we be certain? Do you think the top-stitching is missing, just different, or the photos aren't clear enough to show them in the ones we've seen (like for the three people above)? Have you found any differences in the pictures from the early 1930's?
     
  20. 33-1729

    33-1729 Member

    Messages:
    68
    Thanks again, Roughwear!

    "The Art of the Flight Jacket" has an unquestionable SAT military contract 32-485 and I'll use it as my reference going forward (and I'll purchase the book too).

    Since all original button flap A-2 jackets were considered SAT's, the "gold standard" is an originally tan lined and labeled SAT. As some have noted, the one in Mr Eastman's book has been re-dyed and re-lined with a white fabric with a SAT label that may have been from a government repair stock, so the jacket may or may not be a SAT. Even the jacket from "Full Gear" is unlabeled, so who knows ... yet?

    If anyone has another picture of a fully original SAT military contract 32-485 with a label, please post it! So far, we have one.
     

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