- Good product Review by Lt. Col. Paul R. Jones
For years the only A-2 source I knew of was Avirex. I bought one of their original 1978 jackets. I ordered a size 40 but they sent a 44. It was way too large but the workmanship was excellent. Particularly the heavy cotton stitching and its spacing was superb. The steer hide was heavy and handsome. The epaulets were not too wide and the box stitching was small and squared off. I washed the jacket and threw it in the dryer. It shrunk enough for me to wear, but over the years I outgrew it. I ordered other A-2s, a B-3 and B-15s from Avirex but their quality clearly dropped over the years and their jackets were always too dark in color anyway. By the 1990s I had to wear a 44 and suck in my breath or order a 46 and wear a heavy sweater under it. I was, quite frankly, dissatisfied with Avirex. I recently read comments on an A-2 web page by a serious A-2 collector who rated Lost World, The Real McCoy and Eastman ahead of yours. I thought you might like to here my comparison of your U.S. Authentic A-2 with two of these company's jackets.
I bought a Real McCoy (the New Zealand outfit) A-2 jacket around 1993. It cost $300.00 (U.S.). Plus I had to pay $30.00 customs. I ordered a size 44. It was perfect in color and had the Army Air Forces logo (I had asked for it) on the left sleeve, but their 44 was way too small. I gave it to my son. After two years or so the McCoy had not fared well. The knit cuffs and waistband had frayed and torn and the leather coating had deteriorated badly in the main wear areas. But my son had not put the jacket under a great deal of stress. I've got a friend who's had an Eastman A-2 for about three years, and said he paid around $750.00 for it and quite frankly it looks awful. It is nearly worn out. All the cuffs and waist band wool are worn through with holes and the lining is ripped and torn. The outer shell looks worn, not aged.
I found your A-2 purely by chance while surfing the net last summer and liked the look and price. The russet brown was what I've wanted for years and you advertised veg. versus chrome or drum tanning. I ordered it and have just now, because of the weather, been able to start seeing some of the newness wear off, but it certainly does not appear that your A-2 isn't strong enough to stand reasonable wear and tear. The only trouble is, with the McCoy 44 being so small, I ordered yours in a 46, and it swamps me. But I love it too much to send back.
I have one question for you though. After having a leather name tag sewed on the left front of the jacket at a shoe repair shop, I noticed a black scrape mark on the jacket (probably made while the guy was pulling the jacket around under the sewing machine). When I attempted to clean the spot with a leather cleaning liquid, the area turned black! I checked the inside of one of the pockets and it is clear that the jacket skin is brown below the surface tanning. What do you suppose made the surface of the skin turn lack like that? I was able to make a repair by buying a chocolate colored shoe touch up spray. The area is a bit shinier than the rest of the skin. Any suggestions for matching it all back up? This worries me. Is this jacket going to fade to a darker color over the years? (US Authentic comment- We strongly recommend that you have any repair done by us; you get a lifetime warrantee on the leather)
Overall, I'd say you have just as good a product line as the bigger boys. I'll keep you posted. Also, I'm considering ordering a 44R so I can have one to wear when I only wear a shirt. Have you narrowed your shoulder epaulets? That seems to be a universal criticism you've received. (US Authentic comment- yes we did, currently our stock A-2 jackets have epaulets width of 1 7/8" at the sleeve side tapering down to 1 1/2" at the neck side) Otherwise, What I've got looks good. And are you going to offer jackets with the Army Air Forces logo shoulder transfer? (US Authentic comment- We offer the AAF emblem hand painted or embroidered). (Posted on 7/21/10)
- Brings back memories Review by Chuck Salzenstein
- I was very pleased not only to receive the jacket so promptly, but with the fit, appearance, and workmanship. I am sixty eight years old and no longer able to fly, but wearing the jacket will not only keep me warm, but will also bring back many fond memories. (Posted on 7/21/10)
- Excellent service Review by Dave Toof
Because of you Shaul, and your time with me, I will, in fact, be purchasing one of your jackets soon. Courtesy, and a bit of time with a customer is great for business, and goes a long way. I would like you to know that I appreciate that.
I'm a huge flight jacket buff, and more knowledgeable than many. I own many, and lend, and give rare items to MOFFITT AIR FIELD MUSEUM (no longer a Naval base, now owned by NASA). I have heard many good things about U.S. AUTHENTIC. When I was inquiring about a jacket from EASTMAN LEATHER, I mentioned to the lady on the phone that I was interested in U.S.AUTHENTIC also. The lady on the phone paused then replied, "Well,... they are VERY good". When your competition admits that you are good, That is a high complement. The grain in original A-2's seem to be in blotches, not all over completely, but randomly throughout the jacket. When I make a purchase from your company, If it's o.k. with you, I would like to notify you first to let you know what my plans are, and to possibly ask further questions. No need to respond to this letter, I just wanted to thank you for your time with me. (Posted on 7/21/10)
- My search is over Review by Lt. Col. Paul R. Jones
I have collected U.S. military flight jackets for nearly 40 years. I've been in search of the 'perfect' A-2 all these years, but was always disappointed with some or all aspects of jackets I purchased from other outlets. I took a chance on your horsehide A-2 based on the color photo in your online catalogue. My search is over. Your horsehide A-2 arrived today and it is perfect. A close inspection shows that the leather is strong but not too heavy and the color is absolutely perfect- a light tan brown (many other companies us a leather dyed so dark that their jackets look black) and the details are first class. The overall stitching is correct, properly spaced on the seams, 3 to 5 stitches per inch. The collar has the extra strip of supporting leather which keeps it standing up. Many other A-2s do not have this reinforcement and after a few years of wear and aging, the collar lies flat and limp. Your hanging loop is not only stitched through the lining and attached to the back of the jacket as it should be, but is boxed stitched as well. The epaulets are cut straight. Many people desire thin epaulets but personally, I like the wider epaulets as long as the spacing between the box stitches allows for a noticeable underneath. I can get 4 fingers underneath. Likewise, your shoulder box stitching does not go outside the edge stitching. The snaps are either original WW2 stock or they are a perfect match. Additionally, your jacket is very reasonably priced. It is nearly $200.00 lower than Eastman's A-2. I rate this as the best A-2 I've owned. Thanks for producing a handsome, true to standard flight jacket. Well done!
cc: I discovered three more points of accuracy in your jacket (I missed them yesterday because I was so exited over the jacket). The extra spacing between the male side of the front zipper and the leather: other companies try to make the zipper look even on both sides, but this results in the male side of the zipper binding; yours is correct. The flaps on the front pockets covered the top squared off stitching on each of the top sides of the pockets. Other manufacturers either do not reinforce the edges or use a triangular stitch (this is okay- mass production of goatskin and steer hide jackets were done this way later in the war, but yours is more authentic). Also, your jacket appears to be veg dyed instead of drum dyed as WW2 jackets were done. I'm looking forward to seeing how this jacket ages and wears as a result. Again, GREAT job, I'm thrilled and can't wait for cold weather. (Posted on 7/21/10)
- Quality is exceptional Review by Adrian Waiblinger
- I received my A2-Jacket today and this jacket has lived up to its name. The quality is exceptional and I'm very happy with it, quite a few friends at work have never seen such a jacket and also were quite impressed. thanks for your good service. (Posted on 7/21/10)
- Excellent quality of product and service Review by Steve Roth
- Well, you delivered as promised! The lady's A-2 you cut fits perfectly in all respects. We are both very satisfied with the fit and quality of the jacket. I returned my 44L for a 44R and now the fit is perfect also. Thanks so much for the quality of the product and the excellent quality of your service and personal attention. I will recommend you as the place for A-2's. (Posted on 7/21/10)
- Most pleasant online shopping experience Review by Emil A. Inglesias
- Initially, I was very apprehensive about buying my A-2 Russet Horsehide online, but 1 phone call later after speaking to the U S AUTHENTIC, I was very pleased with the personal assistance and the attention to detail and authenticity. Overall, the most pleasant online shopping experience I have had to date. I love the jacket and look forward to enjoying it's beauty and craftsmanship for years to come. (Posted on 7/21/10)
- I am very happy Review by Jim "Doc" Docherty
ORDERED MY A-2 JACKET ON TUES. AND RECEIVED IT ON THURS. YOU WERE RIGHT ON THE SIZE! I AM VERY HAPPY WITH IT, IT REPLACED ONE THAT I LOST FROM MY KOREAN WAR DAY'S AND WAS VERY GLAD TO REPLACE IT, THANK YOU AGAIN FOR YOUR TIME AND PATIENCE WITH ME.
JIM "DOC" DOCHERTY FORMER USS PHILIPPINE CV-47 CREW MEMBER, THE GALLOPING GHOST OF THE KOREAN COAST (Posted on 7/21/10)
- Absolutely perfect Review by Matthew P. Zahradka
- I wanted to let you know that I received my A2 jacket this afternoon. Thank you for a well made garment. I have a limited edition Cooper A2 (russet) that was made for the 8th Air Force museum, and yours is better in my opinion due to the snap closures as well as the weight of the hide. The fit on the jacket is perfect! Thanks again. (Posted on 7/21/10)
- Great service and superb quality Review by Richard Watson
I ordered an A-2 jacket in seal brown horsehide on Monday and had it in hand on Wednesday. It is a wonderful jacket in both looks and quality and I couldn't be happier with it. It fits just right and the patches I had you put on really add a note of authenticity. My brother spent 33 years in service starting out in the Army Air Corps and then the Air Force and the patches I decided on were some that he
might have chosen. Thanks for the great service and superb quality. (Posted on 7/21/10)