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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hey everyone, new to the site and have a general question about custom leathers. I am in the market for a set of one piece track leathers and have been going back and forth about buying a brand name off the net or getting a set made. It seems that NONE of the M/C dealers in my area sell leather one piece suits, so I am concerned about getting the right fit. Can anyone recommend someone in the Daytona or central Fla area that does good work. I was going to go with Z-leathers from Calif. but was afraid I screw up the measurements. Thanks and sorry I didn't post this in the apparel section but there seems to be more people viewing this section.
 

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I don't know about and makers in Florida, but Barnicle Bill is located in Kentucky: http://www.racingleather.com

His suits have a great reputation - up among Vanson and the like.

If you're worried about taking your own measurements you can always go to a clothing tailor and give them $10 to take your measurements per your leather manufacturer's specs.
 

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Chech with tobefast.com they know someone who does leather , dont know if they have it listed on the site , so you may have to email Shane
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Thanks everyone, I checked out the web site and the suits look nice with normal pricing. Anyone have any experience with their suits?
 

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His suits, actually; Syed is his name--he used to be pretty much a one-man show, don't know about more recently.

Anyway, I've been to his shop outside Orlando (several years ago) with friends who were having custom race suits made. The guy is very nice, very professional, and makes a quality product--everyone I've known who had a suit made has had nothing but good things to say about them.

IIRC, Syed actually worked for Vanson for a number of years before opening his own business, and his suits are popular with racers not only in Florida, but across the country as well--i.e. they're the real deal. Were I to have a need, when and if my Vanson suit ever wears out (admittedly, not likely), I would be very happy to have Syed make me a suit, and it's definitely a plus to have the guy so close to hand: you can see his shop, work out the details of your suit face-to-face, let him measure you on the spot (no hit-or-miss, do-it-yourself measuring), and try on the suit when you pick it up to ensure that it's just right. :waytogo:

I *think* FuManChu had Syed make him a suit recently--he can probably give you more first-hand info.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
That's the kind of stuff I like to hear. It would definitely be nice to have the actual craftsman so close at hand. I know I could screw up the measurements as I tried using the Z-leathers kit and was concerned about where the measurements should be taken from. I'll be giving his shop a call this week to see about an appointment for a fitting. If all works out, I'll give an update on the process. Nice that his shop is only about 15 min from where I work. Thanks again, Tom.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Well, I went to Syed's yesterday and came away very pleased that you guys suggested him. I walked into his shop and was immediately greeted with a warm smile and friendly handshake. I saw about 2 dozen examples of his suits and was able to try on a couple for size. I decided to have a suit custom made and he took all my measurements right then and there-didn't even have to make an appointment. He spent the good part of an hour going over the suits, fitting, details, etc... even though I wasn't prepared to lay out the total cost or 50% deposit. Told me to mail him the remainder of the balance after I wrote a partial payment out. Rare that you can do business with a handshake anymore. Anyway, I should have the suit in about 4 weeks. I'll post an update if anyone is interested, and thanks again to those who suggested Syed's. BTW, the quality and materials looked comparable or better then those big name guys. :waytogo: :waytogo:
 

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Glad to hear that it worked out for you, and that Syed is still doing business as well as he has in the past. Definitely let us know how the suit comes out, and post pics if you can. :waytogo:
 

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I was wondering how a suit that is custom could be equal to a suit made by a major company. I was thinking that the overall innovation and quality of a good Alpinestars or a some other major company should offer up a greater ammount of protection when compared to a custom made suit.
 

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OK I called thes guys today and you are right! Super nice people. I hope the suit turns out as nice. 2 color with hump and my shop logo :waytogo:. Now I have to find a taylor to take some measurments and I'm good to go. I should have it by mid Feb just in time for a Track Day
:809028-ridin:
Great thread, thanks :808922-fiddy:
 

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[ QUOTE ]
Dclxvi said:
I was wondering how a suit that is custom could be equal to a suit made by a major company. I was thinking that the overall innovation and quality of a good Alpinestars or a some other major company should offer up a greater ammount of protection when compared to a custom made suit.

[/ QUOTE ]

I don't know why you'd think that /wwwthreads/images/graemlins/confused.gif. While a number of companies make off-the-rack suits and also custom suits--custom suits offer the advantages of a "perfect" fit, unlike a standard-size, production suit--of the same quality (like {my off-the-rack} Vanson, for instance) generally speaking, the best suits are the custom suits, if for no other reason than that not everybody is a perfect fit for a "standard" suit. My Vanson, although armor-equipped to my specification, was/is a standard, off-the-rack suit. While it fit perfectly everywhere else, it started life about .5-1 inch too short through the torso and excessively tight in the chest, but it (slowly) stretched and conformed--as leather garments will--and now fits me as well as any custom suit could, but the same isn't true for everyone, and I could've saved myself a fair amount of break-in trouble/discomfort.

(On a side-note, my personal experiences of some advantages of dealing with a custom suit maker: as a custom, as well as a "standard", suit maker, Vanson badges and tracks ALL their suits with an individual serial #, and offers a full repair/refurbish/modification service.

I've sent my suit in a couple of times for (minor) repairs--zipper replacement, re-stitching, etc.--and even to have a custom neck closure fabricated and added to the suit in place of the standard one. I drew an exact "diagram" of what I wanted, complete with measurements, sent it in with the suit, and they took care of it.

And Vanson keeps a history of all the work performed.)

Many custom leather shops--like Z-Custom Leathers, Syed, etc. are suit specialists with YEARS of knowledge and experience in making race suits, instead of some large apparel/accessories company for which leathers are only a portion of their focus and may not even fabricate the actual suits, but rather just have them made for them and branded as an A-stars, Joe Rocket, etc.

In fact, most of the suits the big pro racers wear that are branded as A-stars, Joe Rocket, Teknics, etc. aren't even made by those companies but (rebadged) are custom suits made especially for the riders by one of the top custom suit makers--i.e. the "major companies" aren't equipped to make suits of the quality and performance of a custom suit maker.
 

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[ QUOTE ]
CBR600RRider01 said:
OK I called thes guys today and you are right! Super nice people. I hope the suit turns out as nice. 2 color with hump and my shop logo :waytogo:. Now I have to find a taylor to take some measurments and I'm good to go. I should have it by mid Feb just in time for a Track Day
:809028-ridin:
Great thread, thanks :808922-fiddy:

[/ QUOTE ]

So, bit of an impulse shopper are you? :laugh:
 

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No, well maybe, ok YES, :bird: but I have been thinking of getting a new suit and would rather buy a custom for the same price with my shop logo. Also the guy on the phone when I called was very informative and polite as I said, and that means alot to me. :waytogo:
 

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Ya its a amazing deal to be able to get a full suit that is custom made to your specs for less then what a prefab suit would run you to get. Im really thinking of getting one of these suits because I can get any graphics on the suit that I want and it will be a perfect fit and repairs could be made much easier
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
I guess you could look at it this way: Think about how good your mom's homemade apple pie tastes versus a company that makes tons of pie, like "Sara Lee". That homemade pie is given individual attention to detail from start to finish, versus the production line assembly of a big company. More hands on craftsmanship, if done correctly, can lead to a better product (or better tasting pie). :grin:
 
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