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Occasionally we are asked about the X factor rating.  What does it really mean when you wear a 10X hat? 50X hat? 100X Hat? Well, according to a book called "The Cowboy Hats" it explained that in the hat making field, felt has traditionally been graded according to its X-factor. The X-factor was originally determined by the density and shape of the material and ranged in grade from a low of 1X to a high of 10X. Hats made of material rated below 5X generally contained a poorer grade of fur and little or no beaver fur. A 10X hat was made of 100% beaver fur. The X-factor was also a fairly reliable price guide, with a 3X hat costing $30 and a 4X hat costing $40 and a 5X hat costing $50 and so on. Fifty years ago, a 10X Stetson cost $100, was made of 100% pure beaver fur and was the finest hat available.

Today, however, the X-factor rating system is rather subjective. Manufacturers and dealers are not only rating hats differently, each according to its own criteria, but they are also using the X as a price plateau rather than an actual quality rating system. In general, today's X-factor works out like this: a 2X beaver will cost under $100; a 10X beaver about $250; a 30X, $450; and 100X beaver hats generally cost upwards of $1,000. One company's 5X can vary so much from other hat company's 5X.

Prospective hat buyers are advised to discuss the material's X-factor with the hat maker or dealer in detail to ascertain the true X-rating. The real test, ultimately, is the look and feel:  a good hat is soft and silky. (End of book quote)

Other hat company's 5X hat might actually be better than another's 10X - it's a tricky system. With Montana Rio Hat Co., you are getting the best and nothing in the between. In short, because we always make top quaity hats using 100% beaver felts we simple do not use "X" factor.  If you are tired or fed up with cheap "manufactured hats" you've come to the right place. Receive your estimate for your customized hat and you won't be disappointed. That's our pledge.

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