'78 R80/7 and '84 R100RS (Blues Brothers), '86 K75C (Icy Hot)
'90 and '93 Mazda Miatas (Jelly Bean and Red Hot), '02 325ci (Blue Streak)
'96 Giant Upland (big Kendas & freshly greased bearings!)
I'd love to have that Tourist Trophy jacket. Add a white shorty helmet and I could pretend I was Mike Hailwood on a MV Augusta 500.
Tm Pterodactyl MT Outpost
These waxed-material jackets do not breath. The same properties allowing no water in, also do not allow vapor out. This is when they are new. As they are worn, eventually the wax starts to migrate out or be worn off/through. The result is that the material actually will start to breath a bit, but the trade-off is that now it will also leak through during a rain.
There are two competing major brands of these jackets: Belstaff, and Barbour International. Both claim to be the originator (everybody's favorite GS riders wore Belstaff). The modern versions, while trendy, are made from lighter weight materials than those of the past.
These jackets were so popular that by the mid-sixties, one would have been hard pressed to find a rider, entered in the ISDT, who was not wearing one.
Do you want to know about waxed cotton, or the more modern Textile Belstaff gear. I own both. The newer Mercury,Discovery etc is what I thought the question was about. British Motorcycle Gear sells all of them. I have a Zenith,a Mercury, a Discovery and a waxed cotton Trailmaster. The mecury and discovery are modern fabrics,waterproof,have armour and removable liners. The trailmaster is a vintage jacket,but it works well,is waterproof(when re proofed) but does not have armour or liner in most cases. The Zenith is more like a codura jean jacket. It's not waterproof.
I got my Belstaff jacket at the MPLS IMS m/c show. It is very nice and warm.
An essentially new one just sold for $420 on eBay.
Tm Pterodactyl MT Outpost
I have a textile Belstaff Trekker, and it is a great jacket. Comfortable and warm, but it lacks ventillation, and that relagates it to winter, or cool and/or rainy weather here in Arizona.
Motor On '/,
I'd want to see some data comparing waxed cotton to modern textiles (Cordura, etc) for abrasion resistance before considering one for street use. Do the Belstaff or Barbour jackets have any armor? Cotton, waxed or not, is very poor for abrasion. Even heavyweight denim is toast after about 10 feet of sliding on pavement.
I do remember back in the day when I was riding enduro here in New England that all the top riders (and best financed) were in Barbour suits. Steve McQueen and his ISDT teammates all wore them. Very stylish even today, but is it functional?
My wife and I both wore Belstaff wax cotton for years. As others said, they are messy right after they are treated, something that must be done once in awhile. They are also very waterproof, but I do not believe they breath well if they are overly treated. When they get dirty they can be washed, but be ready for them to shrink a size. I replaced mine a couple of years ago for more modern materials, but I do wish I had kept the Belstaff. I would have loved to washed the wax out and wore the jacket as an everyday jacket, I love the style.
I believe they do not have a US distributor per se, at least that is what I was told by the person I talked to. The I only place I have seen them is at the Progressive International Motorcycle Shows Calendar and that is where the wife and I bought ours. Very warm in the cool temperatures. I have the Discovery and the wife has Adventure. So far seems like quality gear. Here is website: http://britishmotorcyclegear.com/
I have the classic Belstaff which my wife bought me years ago. I wear it a bit now but never riding. Waxed cotton really isn't comparable to modern synthetics in abrasion tests. Plus it has a bit of fabric padding at the shoulders but no armor anywhere.