Willis and Geiger M445

JrdnLb

New Member
I just came across this forum and was hoping someone would be able to help me verify the age of this M445. I was thinking 70’s/80’s. Maybe help will valuation as well? Thanks if you need any more pictures than the tags, let me know. I can take more
30354


30355
 

SteveN

Member
You'll need to post more pictures, unless a label expert can help just based on that. That collar looks a bit suspect, as does the "made in USA" tag.
 

airfrogusmc

Well-Known Member
I think it was the mail order W&G and I think that maybe US Authentic made them? Not 100% authentic but a GREAT jacket. Post some more photos if you can.
 

daw

Well-Known Member
I've got one exactly like it, except the size portion of the label was cut off. I think 80's vintage. I paid $350 for mine in near-new condition on ebay not too long ago. Another in more used condition sold for about $400 recently on ebay. My W&G m444 is very similar too and I got that for something like $390 a few years ago so I'm thinking $400 might be a reasonable valuation for the W&G m445. I agree, a great jacket, my go-to at the moment.
 

John Lever

Moderator
Had a couple of these. My observations would be, no collar backing, raw cut edges to facings, sheepskin button holes at base of zip.
Nice sheepskin, light to wear usually not expensive.
W & G were a WW2 contractor.

 

daw

Well-Known Member
I know it's not that accurate, but it seems these 80's W&G m445/m444 fly under the radar and don't get a lot of love around here. I think they're fine-looking. The fleece is pretty thick compared to the originals but that comes in very handy these days living in Minnesota!
 

John Lever

Moderator
I know it's not that accurate, but it seems these 80's W&G m445/m444 fly under the radar and don't get a lot of love around here. I think they're fine-looking. The fleece is pretty thick compared to the originals but that comes in very handy these days living in Minnesota!
Yes I agree
 

airfrogusmc

Well-Known Member
I have a US Authentic M 444 now and it is one nice sheepskin though not 100% accurate looks great. The sheepskin is to heavy compared to originals (which I really like) and the zipper's a paper clip type #10 and the side straps hardware are not right. Still it is my fav of all the sheepskin repros I have owned over the years and some of the old timers round here know that I have had a few. They are also a good price compared to many of the others.
 

warrior-poet

New Member
Had a couple of these. My observations would be, no collar backing, raw cut edges to facings, sheepskin button holes at base of zip.
Nice sheepskin, light to wear usually not expensive.
W & G were a WW2 contractor.

The W&G repro is not bad, though it does have a few historical inaccuracies, as John noted. To begin with, it is labeled an M-445 (which, I believe, should have diamond-shaped elbow reinforces)--I've only documented the full-sleeve reinforces on orig. W&G M-445a and M-445B jackets (W&G used a lower case 'a' and upper case 'B' on their labels)--the same type that was carried over to the AN-J-4. Just to keep things interesting, I have documented jackets labeled M-445A that have all the earlier features (diamond sleeve reinforces, etc.) on jackets made by a variety of contractors (H.L.B. Corp., Monarch, Fried Ostermann, Gordon & Ferguson, etc.), so there appears to a transitional thing goin' on. There are also several variants of the AN-J-4--without the benefit of a nomenclature distinction.

John, I have documented at least one (I don't have time to check my files for others at present) original W&G M-445B whose sleeve reinforces have raw, unfinished edges. I cannot say off the top of my head whether this was typical of W&G production of this model or whether this one is an anomaly--I don't believe I've ever seen this on M-445a/B or AN-J-4s by any other contractor. In my experience over the past decade or so, these W&G repros typically bring around $175-$200 in good to very good condition (in the US)--yes, some bring more (prices reflect what the market will bear at any given time--it's always a crapshoot). Hope this helps. Stay safe, fellas.

W&G M-445B sleeve.jpg
W&G M-445B sleeve.jpg

W&G label.jpg
W&G label.jpg
 
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