Leathers vs Textiles
April 19, 2010 at 11:30 pm #25857SantaCruzRiderParticipant
I only have 1 jacket, a vented leather Teknic with removable quilted liner.
I wear it with and without additional liners for anything in the 32-90 degree range and it’s comfortable.
No argument that it can get toasty on hot days, but I’m rarely in stop-and-go and a bit of movement helps alot. One benefit to stiff leather (at least on my jacket) is that the venting tends to stay wide open and it can flow a lot of cooling air.
Worse than heat to me is when the temp comes with high humidity. Then the leather can feel clammy and uncomfortable.
As for rain, I’ve been caught in it and the jacket has dried to original condition (you have to be very careful how you hang wet leather). But I generally avoid riding in the rain and would definately agree with earlier comments about textile’s advantage in the wet.April 20, 2010 at 7:25 pm #25874motokidParticipant
Where I live, it doesn’t rain all that much, and cools down over night. But regardless, my preference for a leather jacket is its social versatility – when I use my bike as a primary mean of transportation (late spring to mid fall), I just don’t want to look like a dork when I arrive where I wanted to get. You can always wear a leather jacket and look ok, while, once the MC is out of picture, armored textile jacket on a person just looks and feels … I don’t know.
That especially goes for overnight trips, like night or two. Definitely don’t want to carry two jackets because I might need one when I get there where I will be spending a night.
And my experience with the rain is, if it sprinkles anything will do, if it pours, especially at speed, nothing short of dedicated rain gear will work right
KApril 20, 2010 at 9:35 pm #25876JackTradeParticipant
I kinda like walking around with my armored textile jacket after parking the bike…it’s obvious that you actually ride a motorcycle, whereas black leather motorcycle-ish jackets are a dime a dozen. I enjoy the stares when I’m in the grocery store in my jacket and pants combo (as pictured in my avatar). And it guarantees that if there’s another rider there, we’re going to talk…there’s something wonderfully surreal about standing around in the cereal aisle talking about motorcycles.
But yeah, point taken…I suppose one’s girlfirend/wife wouldn’t want one to be handing a brightly-color ICON jacket to the coat check girl at the nice restaurant. And I just bought a black leather jacket for exactly your reasons.April 21, 2010 at 3:52 am #25882Sean_DParticipant
… I love the versatility of a textile jacket as far as changing weather etc. goes, but for walking around town I find the leather much more subtle. Particularly with some of the riding jeans available. There are a *lot* of really nice armored leather jackets out there which are much more fashionable than the “fonz” type motorcycle jackets. Some of them are awfully hard to even tell they are armored.
Another “in-between” option to leather vs. textile is the kevlar lined jean jacket such as the Hood K7 Jacket …
I own both textile and leather, which I wear depends on weather, where I am going and what I am doing once I get there.April 22, 2010 at 3:11 am #25896CBBaronParticipant
I get stares where ever I go with my textile motorcycle jacket. Hi-Vis will do that for you.
Ofcourse I get similar stares walking into a store in bicycling shorts and a hi-vis jersey. Good thing I don’t care. The advantages of being older with wife and kids is we don’t have to care what others think. Young a single you have to worry much more about peers and girls (or guys).
My wife says I look like robocop in my full gear, but she puts up with it because it helps keep me safe.
CraigApril 27, 2010 at 7:28 pm #26000kirkParticipant
Leather is just too hot. I know that leather offers a bit more protection but here in the southwest it is WAY TOO HOT! Most guys here just dont wear a whole lot of ptotection due to the hot temps. Mesh is the way to go here.April 28, 2010 at 9:57 pm #26036tgeliotParticipant
I’m an absolute raw beginner on motorcycles, but I can tell you that as a car driver I find the high-visibility textile (or mesh?) jackets much more noticeable than black leather. In my book that means the textile gives better protection.
I’m also considering a white / light gray textile jacket myself.April 28, 2010 at 11:04 pm #26038Jeff in KentuckyParticipant
You can add armor under a mesh jacket- here is some:
My jacket is similar to this one (same brand), and it works very well for me both in the summer, and with a sweater added under it in the winter at 40 degrees F:May 2, 2010 at 8:32 pm #26124
I have the Alpinestars Bionic Vest and it has a very substantial CE certified, articulated back protector and chest panels. The chest panels are certainly adequate but less substantial than the back protector; it also has some soft padding over the shoulders. Alpinestars use this same back protector in all of their high-end racing gear too, so you can be sure you’re adding some serious protection. I wear this under an armoured, vented touring jacket in the Winter on my freeway commute.
I tried the Icon Field Armor and that’s a reasonable choice if you’re on a budget, but the Alpinestars went further up and down my back and was easier to put on.
The icon goes over your head and then velcro’s round the sides (every time) from what I remember. The Alpinestars Bionic Vest just zips up like a jacket; it has fully adjustable, elasticated, velcro side adjusters which are set and forget. I like it a lot and am pretty sure it completely saved me from a back injury when I went down in the wet on the freeway last year.May 2, 2010 at 10:57 pm #26127
I too have an Olympia Motosports jacket and pants; the Airglide.
It’s held up very well for me and was my primary commuting jacket for about 3 years. No rips, no detached velcro, no loose stitching, no holed pockets, no problems.
Good gear in my opinion. Shame it’s made in China though.May 2, 2010 at 10:57 pm #26125
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