Any Wilson A2000 experts?

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Any Wilson A2000 experts?

Postby oldreliable » January 6th, 2008, 2:11 pm

Hi there,

Are there any folks out there who consider themselves Wilson A2000 experts? I really want to learn how to date the USA-made ones. I can look at one and give an estimate to within a five-year period or so, but I'd like to know more. I have a few of them and love them.

Has anyone written a book yet on this glove? I'm thinking about it writing one myself.

If there is anyone who can share their knowledge with me, I'd be greatly appreciative.

By the way, who was the original designer of the A2000? Was it a man named Earl Malone? I'd like to know.

Thanks,

John,
Ithaca, NY
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A2000

Postby GloveGypsy » January 6th, 2008, 8:04 pm

Hello, Like you, I admire Wilson a2000 designs, construction and material. I consider myself informed, but wouldn't go as far as to call myself an expert.

The best dating source for this glove that I have come across, is an old issue of "The Glove Collector" that has sketch renderings of the early designs with commentary about the transition for one year to the next.

Member "Softball66" may be of some help in this area.

Also, I know of some other members on this board that are serious collectors of A2' designs. I am sure that they will add info to this discussion.

I am not aware that the original designer of the A2 was Earl Malone. I was aware that several big leaguers had input on the original design such as larger pocket, hinge at the heel. etc..

My favorite aspect of the A2 is the incredible leather that Wilson used for it's USA made gloves. Ansonia Leather, what ever that is.......

I assume that was the name of the tannery that was the vendor to Wilson.

Currently, I play softball and use the XXL model. It is simply a fantastic piece of equipment.
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Ahhh, the leather of the A2000

Postby oldreliable » January 6th, 2008, 9:34 pm

Hi there.

GloveGypsy, thank you for the reply.

Yes, the leather. The smell of it. The shine of it. The way my old A2000 maintains the shape of my hand in the liner. Ahh, the leather. This glove is like old iron and warm butter all at the same time!

I've never heard it called Ansonia leather. I learn something new all the time. Awesome.

I bought an A2000 off of eBay late last autumn and have been fine-tuning it to what I need in a glove. I'm an outfielder (albeit a darn slow one these days, almost 39 now), and I have that baby nearly perfect. The way the ball lands in the pocket....incredible.

I'm seriously thinking about writing a book about the A2000. I should contact Wilson. Maybe I will.

My wife is Japanese, and I even lived in Japan for two years. I see no reason why we couldn't interview Mr. Aso, the current A2000 designer. I think that Wilson would probably want something that encompasses the entire 50-year history of the model and not just a romantic hearkening back to the bygone glory days of the USA-made gloves.

When I was in Japan, I purchased an A2000 that is made just for high-school players. These kids can appear in nationally televised baseball tournaments which grip the nation. There is a rule that there can only be one visible logo on the glove, so that the kids aren't turned into advertising billboards. The glove is like a modern day XLO but is quite retro in its appearance. If I could figure out how to fix our digital camera, I'd post photos.

I'd love to see some designs of the early models. I'll see if I can get that issue of "The Glove Collector."

Thank you very much.

John
Ithaca, NY
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Background on A2000

Postby softball66 » January 7th, 2008, 8:38 am

Glovegypsy is right, one of our earlier glove collector newsletter included an article on the background of the A2000. A guy named Ted Javor and a few others at Wilson developed the A2000 design after traveling the major league circuit and getting ideas. We've also run about five issues ago and comparison of the A2000 with the XPG Rawlings series which emerged about the same time. I'll be glad to send you a photocopy of the A2000 story and the newsletter copy of the A2/XPG article if you'll provide me with your postal mailing address.
A 2000 changed the glove design pattern for us with the hinged style that's for sure. Glovegypsy is right about the Ansonia leather too which Wilson used in its top of the line gloves, special tanning but not sure where it came from.
:roll:
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Thanks!

Postby oldreliable » January 8th, 2008, 10:07 pm

Hello Softball66,

Thank you for the reply. I'd love to see any of the newsletters about the A2000. I'll send you my address right away.

Any info I can get is greatly appreciated and treasured. Just seeing the name Ted Javor is a help. I'm really psyched to learn more about all this.

This is great. Thank you again.
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A2000's

Postby ebbets55 » January 9th, 2008, 5:54 pm

Hi All,

Great topic. Although I'm not an A2000 fan at all, I do agree that they were one of the most important gloves in terms of design. I appreciate them for what they are but I don't collect them (maybe it's a Rawlings bias for me - either you're a Ford guy or a Chevy guy type of thing). I have traded and sold every one I have ever had. That being said, I think we should start a new gallery for A2000's. I am not an expert on them at all but so many of you are. Please blast me with all your A2000 pictures and let's show the progression of them all in one place. I think that would be cool and helpful for a lot of people. Of course, you experts will have to help me date them. Thanks.

JD
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Postby vintagebrett » January 9th, 2008, 7:18 pm

Sounds like a good gallery to add, JD. I'll email you these pics but thought the new members would enjoy seeing my A2000 - this was my little league glove and also used it, depending on position, through middle and high school - it is tiny!

Image

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Your A2000

Postby oldreliable » January 9th, 2008, 10:00 pm

That is one sweet glove. Around what year did you get this one?

John
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Postby vintagebrett » January 9th, 2008, 10:13 pm

It was around 1985 or 1986 I believe.
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Postby Cowboy7130 » January 10th, 2008, 11:57 am

I always hate it when you post that pic, Brett. I am so jealous! :shock: :roll: That is a sweet lil' glove.
Yes, I still have my first glove.
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Postby MVALZ » January 12th, 2008, 10:15 am

How about a group shot? I'm for a new thread on A2000's pics. I'll start one in the Pictures section. Part of my USA collection :wink:
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ouch ...

Postby Cowboy7130 » January 12th, 2008, 11:49 pm

oh man ... I am suffering from physically painful jealousy ... :(
Yes, I still have my first glove.
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Postby BretMan » February 23rd, 2008, 12:33 am

Just searching the web, doing some glove research and ran across this on the Wilson company web site. It's from a question and answer page with Wilson master glove designer Shigeaki Aso :

Dear Aso,
I own a Wilson A2000 XL (with a dual hinge web). Just recently my glove broke while I was playing catch with my Dad. It was kind of old to begin with, but I was wondering how to fix this.
Thank you very much.
Sincerely,
Jack

Jack

It is always hard to diagnose a glove repair without physically holding and seeing the glove in person. It depends on which part of the glove or stitch is broken, what part of the lace broke, etc.

Glove repairs can be very difficult at times. If you don't repair it correctly, the problem can occur again. Or if you lace the wrong section or stitch the wrong area, the break point in the glove might change or another part of the glove might break.

Personally, I recommend Earl Malone for glove repairs. Earl was the official Glove Designer in the U.S. based Wilson A2000 factory for 40 years. With his long history of designing gloves, Earl knows the ins and outs of every Wilson Pro-Stock glove. After retiring from the factory, Earl opened up his own glove repair business and has been taking referrals from us for almost 20 years. His experience working with Wilson gloves in unmatched.

As much as I would love to help answer everyone's questions about glove repairs and the necessary steps to repair broken gloves, I must refer you to Earl. We are always providing him with the newest leather and patterns, to keep him updated for repairs on the newest Wilson gloves. His expertise and craftsmanship ensure that your Pro-Stock glove will be fixed and back in Championship Performance condition!

Earl Malone
Malone Glove Repair
127 Township Rd. 150
P.O. Box 201
Pedro, OH 45659
(740) 533-0622


There is a Wilson A2010 on eBay right now that was restored by Mr. Malone. It's a beautiful glove with all new binding, laces and patch. The seller in his auction refers to Earl Malone as "the Kenny Jenkins of Wilson gloves".

Not a bad compliment! Has anyone here ever dealt with Mr. Malone before?
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A2000's

Postby cjkelley1 » February 23rd, 2008, 8:44 am

Hello,this is my first posting but I am a big A2000 collector.I grew up in Ironton,Ohio where the Wilson factory was located from the 40's to the 80's and Earl malone is a close friend.This gentleman has just about all the answers or can find out the answer if you just write him.I collect only gloves made in Ironton and the line under the made in USA tells me they were made in Ironton ,Ohio.I have the code that tells the year and month for the gloves from the 70' s to the 80's but earlier than that I would have to look at Earls cataloges. Thanks.
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Postby BretMan » February 23rd, 2008, 11:14 am

Thanks for the info!

I did not realize that Wilson ran a plant in Ironton. Was the Ironton plant a completely different facility from the one in Ada, Ohio?

(This is a really stupid question on my part- I live in Columbus and my question demonstrates a lack of knowledge of Ohio geography!)

It sounds like you qualify as an A2000 expert!
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