Worth buying an alpha cwu made in the us?

PilatusPilot

Active Member
Hello ladies, and gents. My thirst for a nylon jacket has only been temporarily extinguished by my last purchase... But I'm starting to understand that it'll never end . I'm back at it, looking for a descent cwu-45/p or 36/p. Unfortunately I'm in Canada... We rarely have any of those up here (if you're from Canada and you have a source, please feel free to change my mind, I really need someone here who sells American jackets). eBay usually ships them from the us... And because of the currency and shipping... Well a used cwu ends costing 300$cad and up. And I'm trying to look for either a new one or a lightly used one, I don't necessarily need a model from the 80s, or a genuine one that has been worn by a pilot, but also, based on my last thread, most suggested to avoid modern alpha since it's made in china (also it costs an arm and a leg for a Chinese jacket). So any ideas? Where I could acquire one?

Here's some of my solutions:

I'm running through military surplus stores, most only get the ma-1, so no luck, haven't seen a cwu in one and I've looked through multiple in 3 cities. But I guess I'll keep looking, in the rare events that I do find a jacket of an sort, they are always too small for me, I'm not too tall 6'2, but still most of them are too short...

Another solution I have is trying to maybe get someones attention here who is currently selling theirs in sizes L or XL still unsure about which would fit best. An idea that I had to compensate for the purchase, is to sell my Ralph Edwards g1 that is too small for me (which now brings the question, for how much to sell it so it's a fair price).

My last option is a deal I found on eBay, shipped from Canada and sold in Canadian rubles, that seems to be the correct size, BUT is an alpha industries... Just one that was made in the us.

So any thoughts? Or am I crazy? Are my expectations for a cwu jacket too high? Because I've been on the American eBay and boy.. some are sold for 75$ a pop. I'm not as familiar with jacket pricing as you can see, so I'm genuinely not sure if my expectations are wrong? Thank you in advance, here's the eBay deal.
Screenshot_20220220_000116_com.ebay.mobile.jpg
Screenshot_20220220_000126_com.ebay.mobile.jpg
 

MikeyB-17

Well-Known Member
You used to be able to pick up CWU’s cheap on EBay-I once got a mint early one with the orange signal flag for about £25, which, fool that I am, I sold. My CWU’s (45 and 36) both came from EBay UK, but the prices of everything seem to be going up and it looks like that goes for CWU’s as well. That one is nylon, one of Alpha’s civilian copies, originals are Nomex. Be careful of Isratex, they got caught fiddling the government, and theirs can be sub-standard.
 

Rutger

Well-Known Member
The three horizontal stripes indicate an Alpha jacket for the civilian market. Only buy original contract jackets. Not ever copies such as these.
Back in the late sixties/ seventies at least their L-2B with the three stripes would come off the exact same production line as the government contract jackets. Not any more.
The above CWU is a nylon version. Only buy original. There is no reason not to.
They can and will be found well priced in (very) good condition on ebay. Eventually.
 

bn1966

Well-Known Member
I’ve got a couple of the Civvy nylon made in USA Alpha CWU 45’s, short and light and good beaters.

I’m 5.10” and they fit shorter in my experience than the Alpha commercial MA-1’s of the same period, wouldn’t want them any shorter (XL).

Always lots of CWU 45 service issue jackets on eBay, Nomex and in the case of my late 70’s example, heavier and a slightly longer fit than the nylon ones mentioned above.
 

PilatusPilot

Active Member
You used to be able to pick up CWU’s cheap on EBay-I once got a mint early one with the orange signal flag for about £25, which, fool that I am, I sold. My CWU’s (45 and 36) both came from EBay UK, but the prices of everything seem to be going up and it looks like that goes for CWU’s as well. That one is nylon, one of Alpha’s civilian copies, originals are Nomex. Be careful of Isratex, they got caught fiddling the government, and theirs can be sub-standard.
Hmm okay then I assume I should just keep looking on eBay, keep looking in surplus stores and hope for the best. And I guess the prices I've been seeing are getting normal, because they are definitely more expensive than the prices I've seen people mentioning here. I'll stay on the lookout in the buy/sell section
 

PilatusPilot

Active Member
The three horizontal stripes indicate an Alpha jacket for the civilian market. Only buy original contract jackets. Not ever copies such as these.
Back in the late sixties/ seventies at least their L-2B with the three stripes would come off the exact same production line as the government contract jackets. Not any more.
The above CWU is a nylon version. Only buy original. There is no reason not to.
They can and will be found well priced in (very) good condition on ebay. Eventually.
I see, thank you, did not know that hahaha I thought since this alpha was made in the us, it's one of the good ones. I'll keep on lookin'
 

PilatusPilot

Active Member
I’ve got a couple of the Civvy nylon made in USA Alpha CWU 45’s, short and light and good beaters.

I’m 5.10” and they fit shorter in my experience than the Alpha commercial MA-1’s of the same period, wouldn’t want them any shorter (XL).

Always lots of CWU 45 service issue jackets on eBay, Nomex and in the case of my late 70’s example, heavier and a slightly longer fit than the nylon ones mentioned above.

I’ve got a couple of the Civvy nylon made in USA Alpha CWU 45’s, short and light and good beaters.

I’m 5.10” and they fit shorter in my experience than the Alpha commercial MA-1’s of the same period, wouldn’t want them any shorter (XL).

Always lots of CWU 45 service issue jackets on eBay, Nomex and in the case of my late 70’s example, heavier and a slightly longer fit than the nylon ones mentioned above.
Does the government still issue those? Like is it still possible to buy a brand new one? Or do you have to look for "someone" who knows a guy who can get you an original new one? Like is there a manufacturers website where I could order a brand new legit one. Because I wouldn't mind paying more if it's new.
 

PilatusPilot

Active Member
Taken a while to find it, but Valley Apparel appear to sell CW’s identical to their military ones, with a slightly different label.
Thread 'Genuine or not CWU-45/P??'
https://www.vintageleatherjackets.org/threads/genuine-or-not-cwu-45-p.26223/

Got to be better than that Alpha effort.
Hahahaha thank you very much, I will definitely check it out then. Also any ideas if I'm allowed to post on buy sell? I read the rules, it said that I need to have 30 posts before being allowed to participate, but I'm not sure where to even see that? I went into my account, it only said how many interactions I've had.. I definitely don't have enough jackets to post 30 threads?
 

Ed Rooney

Well-Known Member
If you don’t need fire resistance, the nylon civilian versions will probably hold up longer and offer a bit of water resistance. Nomex is horrible in the rain.
 
Top