Why the zip on your leather jacket is important
We all know that a great leather jacket is the ideal investment. Not only is a leather jacket timeless, but it’s versatile, and with the summer drawing to a close, it’s time to turn our attention to the autumnal weather that will soon be heading our way. And what better material to wear than leather?
However, whilst we are spending time talking about how great leather is in cool weather, we do tend to overlook one of the most important features of a leather jacket - the zip.
So we wanted to take a closer look at the zip on a leather jacket and make a point of highlighting why the zip on your leather jacket is important.
Zipper - it’s all in the detail
Ok, so there are a few different zips that your leather jacket can have - most of the time they’re invisible or metal. Invisible zippers aren’t wholly common, but they can still feature, especially if your leather jacket has a seamless look.
Metal zippers are the most common zips in leather jackets. They have two lines of teeth that have been moulded and sewn into the jacket on either side of the opening, fitting together like a jigsaw puzzle when the zip is closed. These metal teeth, first created in the 1920s, are typically made from aluminium, nickel or brass.
Most zips on a leather jacket are open end zips, meaning that when the zip is fully open, the two sides of the zip separate. Open end zips have an insertion pin and a retention box, and these play an important part when zipping up your leather jacket.
If you don’t align the pin into the retention box property, the zip won’t function correctly. Take your time to ensure the pin has been inserted correctly, that way the zip will work just fine and you don’t run the risk of damaging the zip or your leather jacket.
If you take a close look at your zip you might notice that it has YKK stamped on it. YKK is a Japense manufacturer of zips and their zips are incredibly popular because they have a solid reputation for being reliable and hardworking, even under difficult conditions.
There are other zipper brands out there, and whilst YKK zips can seem like the most common one, they aren't the only one.
Riri Group have been producing zippers for the last 80 years. And where YKK zips are universally utilised, Riri zips are the favoured zips for luxury, high end goods. But both have the same high quality.
This zip brand started life in Manchester, but has grown to become a global supplier with manufacturing facilities throughout the world.
UCAN is an American zipper brand with 25 years experience manufacturing zips. UCAN prides themselves on producing zips to meet all your requirements, and are available in a range of styles and zip types.
How much of the overall product cost is the zipper?
You may gasp at the price of a high quality leather jacket, but remember, the jacket is the sum of its parts. So if your leather jacket has been stitched by hand, or contains a branded zipper, then each of these individual features are going to feed into the cost of the item.
And if your leather jacket has lots of zippers, that will impact the price.
How to take care of the zip on your leather jacket
Because the zipper on your leather jacket is what stands between a cosy leather jacket that closes and one that flaps open in the breeze, making sure that you take care of the zip is vital to maintaining the efficiency of your leather jacket.
- If you’re cleaning your leather jacket, ensure you launder it with the zipper closed to prevent any of the teeth snagging on anything and being pulled apart, thereby rendering the zipper useless.
- If your zipper becomes stuck, don’t tug it. Simply squirt a little liquid soap inside the mechanism and wiggle it free. A little lubrication goes a long way.
- If you find your zipper peeling open when it’s supposed to be closed, it means you haven’t inserted the pin into the retention box fully. You will find that you'll have to wiggle the zip slider carefully when you are undoing a peeled open zip as getting the two sides to slide back through the slider can be tricky. Don’t tug at the slider or you run the risk of breaking the zip.
- If you find the zipper is jammed because there are issues with the teeth, don’t tug at the zipper. Instead, take it to a tailor who may be able to fix the teeth for you, but if not, then they can replace the whole zip on the leather jacket. It’s easier and cheaper to replace the zip that it is to replace the whole leather jacket.