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Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Sat Jun 19, 2010 6:03 am
by HUMVEE Driver
I wanted to make an improved version of my Road Warrior leather jacket, and after a long search on the internet, the closest match I found is the Evel Knievel Mens Black Genuine Leather Classic Motorcycle Jacket.

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Pros: First off, is doesn't have that silly little 'key pocket' on the front that so many motorcycle jackets do. The two pockets on the front are in the correct spot and they are the correct size. The wrist sleaves have zippers in the correct place as well. The collars are also correct. On the back there is only one horizontal seam, also correct. Lastly, on the inside (if it matters to you) it has a satin liner covered by a mesh liner. That's good because there is no insulation to overheat you.

Cons: The first thing to hit me was that they used 'cobbled' leather for this jacket; heavy texture or whatever you want to call it. You can't even tell from the advertised pictures (unless I missed it). I don't think it will matter much, but I really wanted the plain, smooth leather. The jacket has epaulets, which I'm going to remove. The way I see it, Max's jacekt is supposed to be a little beat-up, so I don't think it will matter. All of the snaps on the jacket are a dark grey gunmetal color, not the nickel that they should be. They also have "EK" stamped on them. But removing them and adding in plain nickel snaps is no big deal. The zippers are also the dark grey gunmetal color, and I may see about getting them replaced. The jacket does come with leather pulls on all the zippers, but they can simply be removed.

On the inside the jacket has two pockets; they don't affect the accuracy of the jacket at all, I would say.

I found mine on eBay for $79.00 + shipping. Online stores have them for about $90.00 +shipping. This jacket may be a good alternative to the South Beach Mad Max 2 jacket, which is going for about $152.00 + shipping. I was hesitant to buy a South Beach jacket because of the price, the language barrier (and when you are giving your measurements to them along with custom modifications there is always the chance of something getting screwed up), and because I've heard that some didn't get what they ordered.

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So now I have to work myself up to cutting the sleave off of a perfectly good, brand new leather jacket. Then I have to weather it up, too! I'll keep posting pics of my progress.

Now that I have some hands on info and pictures of it, I'd like to hear what the experts have to say. Karol? Jared?

HUMVEE Driver

Re: Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Sat Jun 19, 2010 10:33 am
by Max Replica
Hey Dave,
Thanks for the review. I was curious about this jacket myself. If you haven't cut the sleeve off yet, you may want to try and put some fine dust or dirt (like fuller's earth) on part of the jacket to see how it looks. I'm a little concerned that it might really highlight the pebbled texture. If it doesn't you're home free, but if it does, you may want to consider whether or not you want to put all of the work into the modifications.
I also know that getting zippers replaced on a leather jacket can be very expensive, so maybe the gun metal is okay as-is.

More importantly, how well does it fit you? Do you think their sizing is reasonably accurate?

- J

Re: Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Mon Jun 21, 2010 9:02 pm
by HUMVEE Driver
The jacket came in sizes Small, Medium, etc. Mine is a large. I'm 5' 11" and 210lbs. Here it is on me:

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HUMVEE Driver

Re: Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Tue Jun 22, 2010 2:54 pm
by ziggy
Nice looking jacket. is that a zipper on the seam across the back?

Re: Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Wed Jun 23, 2010 7:22 am
by HUMVEE Driver
Yes it is. I've never seen one like that before, but it won't matter; who is going to be looking at the back while I'm in my Road Warrior gear?

HUMVEE Driver

Re: Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Wed Jun 23, 2010 12:52 pm
by Max Replica
And once you pull off that little leather tassle no one will even know the zipper is there.
(I wonder what the hell it's there for anyway?)

I know you mentioned having all of the zippers replaced for the color, but I wouldn't bother. I think they look fine the way they are.

Re: Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Wed Jun 23, 2010 9:28 pm
by MFP 2020
It's probably a vent. The nicer motorcycle jackets (the ones made for riding and not just for fashion) have them. Any mystery zippers up front, like on the shoulder seams or under the armpits?

Frankly, I'm disappointed that Dave's jacket isn't white leather with red and blue stars and stripes. :D

Re: Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Mon Jun 28, 2010 3:46 pm
by tk4013
I think it looks GREAT! And for the price, you can't go wrong! The only thing I'd change would be to swap out the snaps for the correct chrome ones, and losing the epaulets. Other than that it's really nice, I wish I had the money to buy one for myself. Nice find ;)

Re: Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Fri Jul 02, 2010 1:07 pm
by HUMVEE Driver
Last night I took out my frustrations on the Evel Knievel jacket. It only has a satin liner and then a mesh liner over that, so there was no warm insulation to remove.

I carefully sliced the threads holding the epaulets on and they came out easily. The left side is the only one that shows (the right side is covered by the shoulder pad). The missing epaulet really isn't that noticable at all, and I might sew it up (or crazy glue it) so you really can't tell I ripped it off.

The worst part is the missing snaps. They left a circular indentation and a hole where they were, as I expected they would. Any ideas on how to fill in the holes or make those spots less noticable?

I added two snaps (one on the front and one on the back) to hold the Sam Brown holster in place.

I might paint over the zippers with silver paint so they look more screen accurate.

I used my old padding for the shoulder pad, and Max Replica's replica shoulder plate. Then I followed Karol's guide (again) on how to make and attach the pad.

Cutting the sleeve off was no big deal, I just measured and re-measured three times to make sure I got it right. I added the snap on there to keep Max's red rag in place.

Then I put on Max's MFP 4073 pin and that's it.

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Next step is to weather it up a bit.

Now, my old jacket... I would offer it up here to the fans, but I'm going to be needing all the $$$ I can get for a certain event in the Cali desert, so it's headed for eBay.

HUMVEE Driver

Re: Review of the Evel Knievel Classic Motorcycle Jacket

PostPosted: Fri Jul 02, 2010 3:25 pm
by Zarana-X
You can fill the holes with plugs of leather cut from that tassle thing, (or use baking soda/talcum powder) and put a dab of super glue to fill the hole. Then use model paint to cover it up. Once dry, go over it with shoe polish and it should be barely visible.