Hello all, Recently took possession of this HL Block M422a, made by Mr Steve Sellers (Headwind Mfg). Steve has done a fabulous job cloning this contract, its a ridiculously good jacket. The quality it as good as it gets, materials and components are the best they can be, the attention to detail, the stitching, the stencilling, the way the whole thing has been put together, is simply... 'top tier'... It was an absolute treat to have Steve work on this jacket. He owns wearable originals of all 5 WW2 manufacturers, and has had a number of others to study and work with, so I recon you can safely say he knows his stuff. Steve does everything himself and sent me updates with pics, all throughout the process. It was really cool to be able to follow the progress of this jacket... to actually see 'my' jacket taking shape. When I had a query or was vacillating about some detail, he was always there to advise or 'learn' me something. There were choices to be made along the way and he patiently guided me through the options... Ultimately veered on the side of 'as authentic as possible'... GOATSKIN - Steve has sourced a very rich goatskin with fantastic character and full of grain... Its an amazing brown colour, with slight variations in hue and tone, which seems to change depending on the light. Amazing. He was right when he told me its a very close match to originals (when new) in grain, weight and colour (I have owned an original M422a). MOUTON - Vintage mouton, darker and lighter opts available... I went for the lighter. The mouton Steve uses is genuine period vintage mouton... very soft and luxurious... The pics don't quite do it justice, the colour also changes slightly depending on the light and how the hair is laying. The darker mouton has more of a lighter brown tint that shows in the light vs the more reddy brown tones of the lighter mouton. STENCILLING on the collar was also 'aged' a bit for an extra touch of class. LINING - three authentic options - Ultimately went for the darker wine red (pics show it lighter and brighter than it is). KNIT (various colour options, authentic single or more robust double weave) - Went for Seal knit in authentic single weave. The knits come from Larry at flightjacket knits & are really good quality. I've used these before, replacing knits on another jacket. ZIPPER - Regarding the spacing between the leather when the NOS Talon zipper is zipped up (Some originals had very little spacing, others a bit more... I opted for a bit of a gap, mainly for practicality and ease of zipping). And now for the 'rub'... Measurements and fit preferences were carefully discussed with Steve, but unfortunately the jacket turned out a bit too long for me. I ultimately gave Steve the measurements I wanted based on the fit of my other jackets, and he followed these to a 'T'. The issue as it turns out, is that its a quirk of many of these M422a patterns... low front, high back. My ELC had a back of 26.75" (felt a touch on the long side, but ok) and my original M422a was 27" and the fit perfectly. This jacket has a back of 26".... Go figure. I am very disappointed, only in that I can't hang on to this fantastic jacket. Someone else is going to benefit from my loss ;( Will place in the Classifieds and see what happens. This would ideally suit someone in the 6 ft to 6'2 ft range, would be my guess. Its obvious that a lot of heart, soul and knowledge went into building this jacket and that is really appreciated. Thank you Steve! You are an artist! Worth every penny and highly recommended.