Wearing a Sheepskin B-3 Bomber Jacket is an experience. You can feel the substantial plushness of the sheepskin pelts used in its design the moment you put it on. A common remark many people state is they feel like "the Michelin Man". Wearing this jacket just for a few minutes and you can understand why WWII Army Air Force servicemen wore these in sub-zero temperatures at altitude - they are extremely warm!
We offer several different types of sheepskin designs. The most common question Customers shopping for authentic Sheepskin B-3's usually ask is... "What's the difference in quality?" The most common comparison is between the Cockpit Z2102M Classic B-3 and the Schott NYC 257S B-3. The quick answer to that question is... not much.
Both are quality pieces that you would be proud to own and wear. Both have the sheepskin pelt "windowpanes" reinforced with goatskin leather strips, also known as taping. Both have twin goatskin leather collar straps for cinching up in frigid temperatures. And both offer adjustable sleeve design that allows you to roll up in the event they are too long, which does not detract from the overall look and design.
The Cockpit B-3 model Z2102M has been our top selling B-3 for the past 3 years. Cockpit was the first company to re-issue the B-3 in 1977 for civilian use and their competitors soon followed. Jeff Clyman, the founder of Cockpit, redesigned the front pocket configuration to include two handwarmer pockets instead of the WWII style single map pocket. During that time, Jeff also worked closely with the tanneries in Texas to develop the shell finish of the shearling. Some key features of the Cockpit B-3:
- The hand warmer pockets are heavy canvas, with integrated zippered stash pockets
- There is a leather hanger loop sewn by the neck area.
- The waist adjustment belts are designed to face forward, as in WWII versions
- The waist buckles are square shaped, with Cockpit logos
- Cockpit is the only B-3 manufacturer to offer long lengths for tall customers
- Cockpit also offers a hooded version, all-black version, as well as many other sheepskin variations
The Schott NYC 257S B-3 is a very popular choice and is truly a quality garment. This B-3 version offers several distinctive features that separate it from the Cockpit version.
- The leatherized shell is a bit shinier
- The hand warmer pockets are leather lined
- The waist adjustment belts are designed to face rearward
- The waist buckles are D-shaped with Schott logos
Whichever one you choose, we recommend ordering in your actual chest size. Since these jackets are very warm, there simply is no need to add layers underneath, so upsizing for extra room is not necessary.