Jedisushi

Active Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
You can't go wrong with an Adventurebilt Raiders in Rabbit (I have a rabbit and a beaver made by Steve), but the new developments with HJ really intrigue me. If 'screen accurate' is a priority, then your hat must be rabbit felt. I solved that quandary by getting one of each. :)

I've had both for about 4 years and have worn both in all types of weather – sweat, rain, snow, etc. Both have held up magnificently. The beaver has a higher density than rabbit, so it will take longer for it to SOAK if you're in the rain. For the same reasons, beaver is warmer (I usually wear beaver when temps are below 70 degrees Fahrenheit) and the felt is stiffer.

I'm going to take my time evaluating the situation at HJ, perhaps even waiting until I pass through London to examine them in person. In the photos that I have seen, I have noticed some really excellent reverse tapers, which are less common on the ABs.

I know you won't be disappointed with an AB, and I suspect the hats from HJ are excellent too. Though you should call them to clarify sizing and crown measurements if you decide to go that route. It's a good time to be a fan of the raiders hat, but that means the choice isn't easy!

PS: AB will take a while. HJ will be much faster, if that matters.
 
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RayR

Well-Known Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
I can't decide which one to get! Here are my choices. (p.s I will be using this hat in semi harsh conditions sometimes, like Indy!)

Herbert Johnson Raiders Hat in Pure Beaver- Made from the original creators and from the original block. (It has been found)

Adventurebilt Raiders Hat in Pure Rabbit- Highest regarded replica Indy hat maker.

Penman Raiders Everyman Hat- Cheapest option, and still good.

AdVintage Raiders Hat in Pure Beaver- Want to know more about them. They look great with many choices.

Let me know what you think. Also, will Rabbit hold up well like Beaver?
I've done the rabbit and beaver options many times from many makers. For me rabbit is the best choice. Not only is it less expensive, but it has an ever so slightly more floppiness to it which was key to the original.
As for the maker, it's really going to be a matter of taste. Penman and Adventure built are both fine hats, but in my opinion no one matches the expert and personal craftsmanship and attention to detail given by Steele and Jones. Look them up, check out the pictures, read the many many happy comments. Only Steel and Jones match every detail and Taylor it exactly to your head and look. Not only does the Hat come out a precise replica, it also looks like it belongs on your head.
BTW, S&J also does a killer Herbert Johnson replica hat


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NorthProds

New Member
You can't go wrong with an Adventurebilt Raiders in Rabbit (I have a rabbit and a beaver made by Steve), but the new developments with HJ really intrigue me. If 'screen accurate' is a priority, then your hat must be rabbit felt. I solved that quandary by getting one of each. :)

I've had both for about 4 years and have worn both in all types of weather – sweat, rain, snow, etc. Both have held up magnificently. The beaver has a higher density than rabbit, so it will take longer for it to SOAK if you're in the rain. For the same reasons, beaver is warmer (I usually wear beaver when temps are below 70 degrees Fahrenheit) and the felt is stiffer.

I'm going to take my time evaluating the situation at HJ, perhaps even waiting until I pass through London to examine them in person. In the photos that I have seen, I have noticed some really excellent reverse tapers, which are less common on the ABs.

I know you won't be disappointed with an AB, and I suspect the hats from HJ are excellent too. Though you should call them to clarify sizing and crown measurements if you decide to go that route. It's a good time to be a fan of the raiders hat, but that means the choice isn't easy!

PS: AB will take a while. HJ will be much faster, if that matters.
Thank you so much! But just to be clear, will rabbit last in harsh conditions and pop back into shape like a beaver?
 

NorthProds

New Member
Yes, if it’s a quality hat (AB, Penman, and HJ would qualify).
Really? That's good news because the only reason I put beaver down is because everybody else on other forums were saying that rabbit doesn't compare. By the way do you have any rabbit hats?
 

Jedisushi

Active Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Yes, I have one rabbit and one beaver, both ABs made by Steve.

As I said, beaver is more dense, so it’s stiffer and takes a bash a bit easier.

But a quality rabbit hat is amazingly resilient, just like beaver. It’s got its own special character because it’s a bit “floppier.”

The original raiders hat was rabbit.
 

NorthProds

New Member
Yes, I have one rabbit and one beaver, both ABs made by Steve.

As I said, beaver is more dense, so it’s stiffer and takes a bash a bit easier.

But a quality rabbit hat is amazingly resilient, just like beaver. It’s got its own special character because it’s a bit “floppier.”

The original raiders hat was rabbit.
Huh, so if it can take just as much then why do people say beaver is the only good one for harsh weather? ps Sorry for repeating some things just want too be really sure before I go spend hundreds of dollars.
 

Jedisushi

Active Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
No idea! I suppose beaver may be more durable but in a quality hat I think then functional difference should be negligible.

A real bespoke hat is meant to be worn. You shouldn’t haven to baby it.
 

animator

Active Member
Beaver felt is really fantastic stuff. Is there a hat store near you where you could compare rabbit and beaver felt?
If you are planning to actually wear the hat, how the felt feels when you handle and wear the hat is what really matters. If the hat is for mostly display purposes go with rabbit felt. If you want to wear it, try to find a way to compare rabbit and beaver felt before committing to one. If you can afford both, my hat is off to you!
I have 4 fedoras and all are beaver felt, but mine aren't for a costume -they keep my head warm and glasses dry in the rain.
 

the Pawn

Sr Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
Rabbit takes a beating and keeps on ticking. My beaver stays in box and I wear with a suit.


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Jedisushi

Active Member
RPF PREMIUM MEMBER
About how long will a well made rabbit hat last?
One of the things that distinguishes a high quality bespoke hat is that it can be cleaned/reblocked (by a pro only, please) more than once over the years.

That’s why they cost $500.

I know folks who’ve had Adventurebilts for well over ten years. It should be the same with any top quality bespoke hat.
 
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