September 21, 2023

Automotive Breath

Spearheading Speed Excellence

Choosing Your Motorcycling Outfit – 2 Outfit Combinations You Should Consider Before Buying

The summer is coming up and the motorcycling community is currently going crazy about gear and accessories for the bike. Choosing your gear might not be all that simple since it’s not just about the looks. Unlike car drivers, you don’t have a metal cage to protect you, so you will need all the protection that you can comfortably wear.

Besides the protection, there’s a couple of other factors you should consider; the material, purpose of use, and fit of the outfit. Fit of your biking gear is important because if your jacket, for example, is loose, in case of an accident the protections might not be where they’re supposed to be.

I’m going to review two of the most common gear combinations that you should give a thought to before choosing yours.

1. The one-piece leather suit. One-piece leather suits are mainly made for track use. In it’s original use or alternatively on a sport bike in street use, this kind of a suit is very efficient. One-piece suits have flexible textile material in the limbs’ joint areas, which will reduce the resistance of the suit in aggressive driving maneuvers. Suits like these are quite comfortable and flexible even new, and with the added break-in factor, they become like a second skin to you in no time.

Besides racing and aggressive street riding, one-piece suits are not ideal. While it might give you some street credibility showing up to the local roadhouse looking like a MotoGP-driver, the cut of these suits is made entirely for the driving position and they’re very restraining when not on your bike. Having a coffee with a big aerodynamic hump on your neck is not the most enjoyable thing. One-piece leather suits are commonly very well perforated so if it’s cold outside, you will be cold as well. When it’s hot, though, you will love the suits ventilation. You must also note that because the suits are perforated, they don’t hold water outside, so you have to have a rain suit with you in case of rain.

Summing up; while the one-piece leather suit can be viable as a street outfit, because of it’s one-sided purpose, it would probably be easier if you just used the suit for the hot days, and had a different kind of outfit for the rest.

2. The waterproof textile suit. According to the motorcycle gear retailers, the waterproof textile outfits are currently sold the most. These outfits usually come with a Gore-Tex membrane which, while being a bit more expensive than other similar membranes, gives 100% guarantee of keeping you dry. All the manufacturers using Gore-Tex will have to send their new products to Gore-Tex for tests and approval. Gore-Tex says that the water cannot penetrate the membrane even under pressure, and it’s still supposed to be breathable. I have to disagree. When it’s hot outside and you’re riding, you can feel the outfit not flowing air as well as one without the membrane.

When riding, the wind pushes the outfit against the skin which makes the rider get cold a lot faster. This is due to the softness and lightness of the textile material, compared to the more stiffer leather. This feeling is especially noticeable if you’ve taken off with very light underwear and the weather turns colder as you ride. The quality manufacturers will ship a quilted liner with most of their textile wear, though.

In summary, the waterproof textile suit is an excellent all-round garment for all kinds of riding conditions, and can make your riding season remarkably longer, especially if you’re in the colder states.