Fox Creek Leather "V 1.8" Jacket
Next time Uncle Ralph claims that "they don't
make 'em like that any more", break out your Fox Creek
Leather V 1.8 jacket.
We were impressed with the Fox
Vented Racing Jacket and Lori (our
Women's Motorcycle Clothing page editor) absolutely loves her
Women's 3/4 Length Jacket,
which still gets raves from strangers well over a year later.
There's something about the quality of the leather
and the stitching that makes a Fox Creek Leather product
stand out from the crowd -- especially now that just
about every leather garment around seems to be made in
some far-off land.
Fox Creek Leather still makes all their jackets,
pants, vests and other products right here in the U.S.A.
Yes, they cost a bit more, but you'll get a jacket that
will last for your lifetime and probably your kid's too.
It's a shame that there are so few
clothing manufacturers left in the U.S.A. Leather
goes together with motorcycles about as well as any
pairing ever created. Leather jackets were just
about born on a motorcycle, and it's nice to see Fox
Creek Leather carrying on the tradition.
The problem is that their leather jackets are almost too good
to wear! I dread the thought of falling off my
motorcycle, but I swear if I do I'll take this jacket
off and carefully pack it away before I hit the ground!
As nice as it looks, the Fox Creek Leather V 1.8
is made to do the job. I'm guessing that the "1.8"
represents the thickness of the leather in millimeters,
because that's just about what it measures on mine.
1.8 millimeters of leather is about as thick as it gets
-- even motorcycle racing leathers aren't as robust --
so the V 1.8 should have enough of the "right stuff" to
get the job done.
Leather this thick is usually as stiff as a 2x4 and
takes about 93 years to break in, but the cool thing is
that the V 1.8 feels as soft as silk. I don't know
what Fox Creek Leather does to get their finish, or
"hand"*, but all three of
the jackets we've tried have a consistently smooth,
buttery feel with excellent graining.
The stitching on the V 1.8 is also a work of art.
The jacket is very subtle in its styling, and the little
details are what make it work. Anyone with a
passing knowledge of leather will recognize the
quality of workmanship and the details in the V 1.8's
stitching. It's one of the things that makes an
intuitive but unconscious difference to admirers who see
you wearing the jacket.
The V 1.8 is somewhat of an anomaly in the Fox Creek
Leather lineup. It's cut for sportbike owners,
short in front to prevent bunching and longer in the
back to provide coverage when leaned forward. The
arms are cut with a slight forward rotation, and the
jacket "fits like a glove" with a slight forward
However, I have a confession to make. I've been
wearing the V 1.8 as a street jacket. The design
is subtle enough to easily pass as a cool-looking,
vaguely motorcycl-ish jacket that draws plenty of
looks. It's a touch on the heavy site for street
wear -- that 1.8 mil leather gives the size 46 jacket a
weight of 6 lbs. -- but it works great in cool
Leather is a natural product, so it can be slightly
variable in color, texture and feel, but the Fox
Creek Leather staff will find you the perfect fit.
I normally take a men's U.S. size 44, but after giving
them my true measurements, they pulled this one off the
rack and it fits like it's custom made. The V 1.8
is available in an astonishing range of sizes, from 38
all the way up to 60 Long. (Note to self: if you run
into a guy wearing a size 60 Long, remember to be
All Fox Creek Leather products are guaranteed for
life, which is about 99 years more than any of the other
leather manufacturers' guarantee their goods.
The V 1.8 has the special Fox Creek Leather hidden waist adjuster.
A leather belt is guided into the jacket and the waist
can be adjusted internally, so there are no leather
buckles or ugly Velcro swatches to spoil the clean
exterior. The photo on the left illustrates the
inside of the jacket with its hidden Velcro adjustment
The adjusters will give about 5" of give and take on
either side, so the V 1.8 should fit just about every
body. Or everybody's body.
The jacket has two outer slash pockets, each with a
heavy gunmetal-colored YKK zipper. The zipper slides are hidden
under the leather hemming.
criticize a jacket for having zipper pulls that are
difficult to grab with gloved hands, but
in this case, it's perfect because the zippers and
zipper pulls are hidden, adding a sleekness to the
design, kind of like a Boyd Coddington hot rod.
The pockets, believe it or not, are actually lined
with leather. When's the last time you found that?
The sleeves on the V 1.8 each have a 6" long (15 cm)
zipper vent opening under the tricep, again partially hidden. I
didn't even realize the vents were there until I read about
them in the product literature.
The V 1.8 can get
hot, like any non-perforated leather jacket, but that's
the price you pay for "the look"!
Inside the left breast flap is a storage pocket about
7" deep (18 cm) and 5" wide (13 cm). It closes
with a metal snap and this pocket is lined with a nylon
taffeta. It's useful for stowing a wallet or cell
The V 1.8 has a sewn-in mesh liner throughout the
inside and taffeta lining in each of the arms.
This serves to keep the leather from direct contact with
the owner's skin in case he's going for the bare-chested
(or sleeveless T-shirt) thing.
A detachable zip-in
thin quilted liner is also standard issue. It
actually works pretty well in providing some insulation
in colder weather, but it's now warm enough around here
to pack it away until next winter.
The only real issue I have with the V 1.8 is the
design of the zippered sleeve cuff (see above photo). The cuff has a
sewn-in leather dart that bunches up into a perfect "U"
shape when the zipper is
closed. I leave the zippers open for street wear,
so it's not a problem until the bottom of the sleeves are zipped up for
riding. I think that probably a thinner leather in
this area would reduce the bunching and make it a bit more comfortable.
Oh, and the neck only has one metal snap for
tightening, so if the owner's neck is over about 17.5"
in circumference, it might be a tight fit. But who's going to button
up the neck on the street?
The Fox Creek Leather V 1.8 is a great-looking,
high-quality all-around jacket that just begs to be seen
on a Power Cruiser like a Yamaha Warrior or Harley
V-Rod. But you could also walk into the most
chichi club in Manhattan wearing this thing and you'll
be guaranteed some admiring looks.
Add in the lifetime guarantee and you have a unique
heirloom-quality jacket that will keep you protected and
looking good for a long time to come.
*Hand: Defined as
"the feel of cloth or leather or tactile reaction to its
textural qualities of smoothness, flexibility, softness"
Merriam-Webster Unabridged Online Dictionary.
Review: Fox Creek Leather V 1.8 Jacket
Retail Price: $379.00 (Free S/H)
Comments: Good-looking jacket. ~1.8 mm thick
leather. High-quality stitching. Subtle but elegant styling.
Zip-in quilted liner. Permanent mesh liner and taffeta-lined
sleeves. Leather lined outer pockets. Sizes: 38 to 60 Long.
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From "G.K." (2/09): "FYI, Fox Creek Leather has
discontinued the v1.8 jacket. Apparently they can't get the 1.8mm
leather anymore. I literally just bought the last one they had off