Frequently asked Questions
Are all your garments produced in the USA?
YES. Vanson Leathers are produced in America, each are designed, engineered, cut and produced in the U.S.A. of imported and domestic materials in our own workshop in Fall River, Massachusetts, USA.
Why does it take so long to get your products?
There are 2 main factors that contribute to the long lead times for our garments:
1. Raw materials supply. Like other manufacturing segments our supplier base has contracted. Many of the suppliers are smaller and do not have available stock at hand and we have to wait for their production cycle to occur. Also, we have high standards-only select materials are accepted by us to make your garment.
2. Labor hours and hand made quality. We make our items in the same meticulous way we have for over 40 years. We have improved efficiency with some technologies, but nothing takes the place of hand cutting and individual sewing machine operators. We typically sell more items each week than we make, we continuously run a backlog.
Do you have a catalog or price list?
Yes we have a price list and this can be faxed, mailed or emailed to you. No, we no longer print a full catalog. We rely on our website. Old catalogs can be found and, while many of the products in them are still available, many are not. Old garments can be produced as per request, but these requests come with additional fees. Please contact us for further details. The 225 page catalog we printed in 2000 is available as a pdf at:
Do you make boots or saddlebags?
No we do not make boots, or saddlebags.
Why don't your dealers have more styles and sizes in stock?
Our dealers have their own criteria for selection based on their climate, customer demographic and other fiscal and franchise constraints. In the past few years the later element has become the significant deciding factor. Most US franchise motorcycle dealers are encouraged to stock only the approved branded apparel supplied by the Motorcycle manufacturers. Some dealers do not stock but will special order a requested item if you ask them. We make a lot of items, it can be a challenge for a dealer to anticipate the items you are expecting to see.
What is the difference between your competition weight leather and the medium weight Firenze leather?
The Firenze (fuh-ren-zee) leather is cowhide that is approximately 1.mm thick. It has been tumbled to increase the softness and texture. It is very durable and strong and is more typical of the weight and feel of other industry standard leather.
Our custom competition weight black cowhide is 1.3-1.4 mm thick and produced with a proprietary process that results in a smoother appearance, and firmer feel. This product is very carefully crafted and requires several steps to produce. It is extremely strong and gives our products that characteristic look and longevity that the American made Vanson leather jacket is known for.
What is an "oddity"?
An oddity is a term we use for the product we make when you order something that is different from our standard specs. We make nearly as many special ordered items as standard ones. If you request a lining or hardware change then your order will be an "oddity". The minimum charge for an oddity is an additional 15%. Other changes, such as fit, or stripes, or pocket configuration will add additional charges to your order. Oddities cost more in production because of special handling and more work being done to them.
If my leather garment should get wet is there anything I should do to about drying it?
Leather should be air dried at room temperature. Do not force the drying time with heat, this will shrink and stiffen the leather. A good shower is an opportunity to condition the leather with our leather balm.
How do I clean road grime from my garment and keep it looking new?
Mix a solution of diluted mild dish or laundry soap. Wipe your garment down with a soft cloth, don't be afraid to use the secret weapon of elbow grease. If you have a lot of bug juice and road grime you will need to loosen it by rubbing the surface. Do NOT scrub. Then wipe off the soap residue with a clean wet cloth using water only. The final step should be a light coat of Vanson leather balm while the garment is still damp.
A couple of thin layers of balm is better than one heavy layer. Too much leather balm can leave the surface sticky with excess wax. Any excess wax can be buffed off with a clean, dry terrycloth towel.
A couple of cleanings a year is recommended to preserve and protect the leather and extend the life of your Vanson garment.
How do I break this thing in?
Wear it. Roll it up and use it as a pillow when you watch TV. Unroll it and roll it the other way. Work it with your hands. Wear it more…
Why does your large says 4L?
Our computer system requires a number and letter specification, 4L is a large.
1XS = XS
2S = S
3M = M
4L = L
5XL = XL
6XXL = XXL
7XXX = XXXL
84XX = XXXXL
Do you repair other leather garments?
No, we will not work on any other manufacturers garments. We will not be able to match materials, or construction methods.
Can I re-dye leather to a different color on my racing suit?
No, while our re-dye service is quite effective, we strictly dye them the same color.
Why do you require the height, weight and age on the custom measurement forms?
All of these variables come together to help our pattern department construct a complete mathematical snapshot of you. Weight can be an indicator of shape, as can age. We compare your set of measurements to a large database collected over the years.
While you may actually be the same height and weight as you were at 18 you are most probably not the same shape. When comparing you to this database we will want the pull the correct age category. We would no more compare an 18 year old to a 58 year old as we would the opposite.