Los Angeles, Calif. 1948
- Saddle seat craftsman Bob Bates founded Bates Mfg. Co., manufacturing, among other things, foot pegs, windshields, seats and leather shirts. Although Bob saw it as more than just a leather company Bates remained small throughout 1967 when he retired and sold the company to Robert Rudolph.
Rudolph had a bigger vision. He changed the name to Bates Industries, Inc., and moved the company to Long Beach, California where it is still headquartered. Bates' great achievement in the '60s was to introduce brightly colored leathers into a world dominated by traditional all-black leathers. Motorcycle champions like Mert Lawwill, Gene Romero, and Kenny Roberts took the podium in Bates' colorful racing suits and helped build one of America's iconic motorcycle brands.
Bates Leathers has changed hands several times over the years and is now in the ownership of dynamic sister duo Dawn and Dana who continue to hand make some of the coolest racing leathers on the planet. Drawing on Bates extensive racing history and associated craftsmanship GTUSA has produced the best in a line of T-shirts that reference the extensive history of Bates Leathers. In keeping with the tradition, the shorts are made from 5.5 oz ring-spun 100% American cotton pre-shrunk to minimize shrinkage. Available in sizes S through XXXL, they have a traditional t and are designed and printed in Los Angeles by, well, motorcyclists.
To purchase go to www.genuinebates.com or, www.ghostracksusa.com and see other cool Bates clothing as well as other brands including Stromberg, Car Craft, GhostracksUSA and Motorcyclist Magazine which this year enjoys its 100th anniversary.