Questions about gear
July 10, 2008 at 7:46 pm #1711
I was trying on helmets today and was wondering how snug should a helmet be? Im 5’11 150 now that does not say much for my head size I tried on a medium and it fit pretty snug. Also in my town the more people I see riding the less I see them with gear? is gear something some riders think they out grow. If so what is a could hard deck to have for gear i mean if im going from the grocery store and back are so. Now I know u are supposed to wear all gear all the time. But if im taking just a little ride would it be okay only to wear like. Jeans, a mesh jacket, helmet, gloves and boots.? thanks for the adviceJuly 10, 2008 at 8:27 pm #8661
I wear all my gear, all the time. My summer riding pants are cooler than jeans anyway.
I can’t chew gum in my helmet, it’s that tight.July 10, 2008 at 8:58 pm #8664
i wear everything all the time… which includes some pretty flashy white cordura overpants… some of the other riders I know choose the reinforced jeans with knee armour underneath… that is an option if you want to look ‘normal.’
I would never, under any circumstances, ride without my leather jacket, gloves, helmet, boots…July 10, 2008 at 9:53 pm #8668
Like anything in life, gear is a calculated risk. You probably won’t have people standing there telling you to put it on every time you go out. On the contrary, you will have people tell you that you don’t need all that stuff or ask you if you plan on crashing. It will be up to you every day to put that stuff on and lug it around when you get where you are going. The pants, for me, are the biggest pain. I hate wearing them, but I do. I will probably buy a different pair to use for next summer and the ones I have are going to be fine in the cooler months, but, right now, I hate putting them on. I have road rash before from bicycles and I don’t want to experience that on a larger scale and that keeps me putting my pants on.
Personally, if I am only going to the grocery store, I am usually in flip flops, a corona tank and shorts. I forgo the helmet because there aren’t usually cops between my house and the store, and the corona tank will protect me enough anyways. J/K, ATGATT!
“I am the best I am at what I do, and what I do ain’t nice.”-WolverineJuly 11, 2008 at 12:32 am #8670
You want it snug enough that it will stay in place in case of a crash, but large enough to not create pressure points on your head. There has to be enough room for the lining to absorb impact, not transfer the energy to your skull. Try on a lot of helmets. All brands are shaped a bit differently and some will fit you better than others. I find Arai and HJC helmets fit me better than Shoei helmets. Your fit may vary from mine, so go what what is comfortable for you.
As for gear during little short rides just remember that jeans are not made to resist abrasion if you find yourself sliding on asphalt. Yes, motorcycling pants are a hassle for short rides, but the armor in good pants will save you a lot of pain if you fall.July 11, 2008 at 4:36 am #8672
I remember reading some where, that the majority of accidents happen less than 5 minutes from home and under 35 mph. If I run across that info again I will be sure to post it. I really feel like ATGATT. Plus when I walk into the grocery store I want people to know I just got off my bike (especially any possible mates). Face it bikes are cool, and so are bikers so why not take advantage of it!July 11, 2008 at 5:50 am #8674
All the Gear, All the Time. ATGATTJuly 11, 2008 at 4:25 pm #8684
The test I do is I wear the helmet for 30 minutes and then I take it off and look at my head. The helmet should have been snug, but if after I remove it if there are some red spots on my forhead or cheeks etc… that means it is TOO tight. The helmet also shouldn’t cause a headache or anything like that.
When it comes to gear I have heard a saying, “Only cover the skin you don’t want to lose.” When I ride, I usually gear up for speed/temperature that I plan on riding. In an ideal world I would wear full leathers whenever I put a leg over the bike, but I have found that I am too lazy to do that, but I do realize my laziness comes with risks.
I never ride unless I am protected head to toe, but sometimes that level of protection varies. I will NOT ride in regular jeans because I hear they disintegrate on contact with the asphalt ( ) But I will wear some kevlar reinforced riding jeans if I don’t plan on going faster than 45mph. I figure that worst case scenario I fall off at full speed and I’m not able to shave off any speed from braking then the kevlar should be able to protect against some road rash. Although, when I am wearing the jeans I realize that if I do crash then I will most likely get at least a little road rash somewhere on my legs.
Pants are really the only thing I compromise on, everything else is built for full speed crashes. I have 3 different jackets (2 mesh, 1 leather), some textile overpants, and I have either Alpinestars racing boots or Shift Riding Shoes. I feel like I could crash at 65mph – 75mph in any of that gear and survive without much injury or scarring (besides maybe some broken bones).
I really recommend checking out some Shift Riding Jeans, or maybe some Draggin’ Jeans if you plan on wearing something besides textile/leather pants when you ride. They aren’t going to do a lot, but they are definitely better than regular jeans, and loads better than shorts.
When it comes to gear I used to think that having a lot of people that are safety conscious trying to peer pressure new riders into wearing the right stuff was the best way to go about it. Now I realize that if they succumb to peer pressure that easily, then they definitely aren’t going to wear gear because the Majority of riders only wear the bare minimum required by law (in CA that means a helmet). There are a lot more squids out there then safe riders, so you should really just ride your own ride. If you feel like your skin is worth protecting then thats great. If you don’t mind scars or pain or hospital bills then thats also OK. The number one thing to keep in mind though is every rider I know who has been riding at least 3 years has crashed once already (myself included). Some were low speed spills, others were highspeed and caused death or serious injury. Riding a motorcycle is incredibly dangerous, but also a lot of fun. The odds are very high that you will crash at least once if you ride a motorcycle. It could happen on the freeway, in the twisties, or even somewhere mundane like on an errand to the grocery store. I try and dress for the crash first, and dress for the ride second.
Thats my 2 cents.
~Best Beginner Motorcycles AdminJuly 11, 2008 at 6:01 pm #8691
Great comments about helmet fit so far. In the summer you always see riders in shorts, t-shirts, and even fip-flops. I absolutely cringe when I see that. It’s especially bad to see the gf on the back dressed the same or with less skin covered.
Road rash is no joke. It’s very painful and can be dangerous (blood loss, infection, skin grafts, etc.). As was said, only cover the skin that you want to keep with proper riding gear. Jeans and other regular clothes last about 5 feet while being grated on the asphalt.July 11, 2008 at 7:35 pm #8687
If i plan on riding my motorcycle anywhere, I’ll gear up. Always a leather jacket, air mesh pants for shorter rides, leather pants for long rides (if i feel like putting leather pants on), gloves, riding boots, etc. Generally, though if i’m going anywhere that’s a mile or less, I’ll walk or just cage it over there depending on where I’m going and if I need to bring stuff back with me.
Edit: When wearing leathers, I put on thin coolmax, moisture wicking under shirt and pants – long sleeve tee and long pants/leggings. Basically think spandex… Works great for keeping you cool while you sweat if you’re wearing perforated leathers and makes taking off your leathers a breeze.
If there’s anything more important than my ego
around, I want it caught and shot now…July 11, 2008 at 8:04 pm #8692
I read somewhere that, in addition to doing Ben’s “too tightness” test, you should fasten the helmet, and try to pull it off of your head by grabbing the back of it and trying to roll it off over the top of your head. If you can roll it off of your head then it doesn’t fit and could come off in a crash.
I’m also an advocate of ATGATT but *very* occasionally will not wear my over-pants for a short jaunt to the store; just my jeans.
MSF say that blue jeans will last for 4 feet of slide on asphalt before exposing your skin to the road; not much, really…
The biggest pain about wearing the gear is what to do with it when you get to your destination and the weather’s hot. I usually thread a long cable lock through the arms and legs and lock it all onto the bike seat / frame and then put a Bungee net on top (to keep it all from falling off the seat. Remember to empty all the pockets and put the cable through your belt buckle and the bungee net as well. I installed a helmet lock for the helmet and have a cable lock for passenger helmet if necessary. I tried those helmet lock “splitter” plates, but they’re very difficult to get two helmets on to. The gloves either go inside the helmets (semi obscured, but not secure at all) or I carry them with me in a Cortech mini tank bag. The whole set-up is not that secure, but it’s better than nothing and, knock on wood, I’ve never had anything taken yet.
Lockable saddle bags would be much better but you might have to take the armour out if you need to fold the gear to get it into the bags (and saddle bags can reduce your ability to split lanes).July 11, 2008 at 10:15 pm #8694
anyone use this?
it looks interesting…
i also saw a padlock that goes through the cross-drilled brakes with a 100+ dB siren that goes off if it is moved… anyone ever tried using one of those?July 11, 2008 at 11:48 pm #8698
I’ve been looking at the xena xr-1 alarm disk lock myself. There’s also the sirenpadlock sp302. These go into the disk brake themselves.
Edit: Sorry. didn’t look at the link carefully enough… thought it was a bike lock…
If there’s anything more important than my ego
around, I want it caught and shot now…July 22, 2008 at 1:10 pm #9100
Jacket: http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com/1/1/39/1295/ITEM/Tour-Master-Coaster-II-Leather-Jacket.aspx (the black with white)
Pants: http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com/1/1/40/10474/ITEM/Icon-ARC-Overpant.aspx (white with black trim)
–“You don’t get to be old bein’ no foo, see? Lotta young wise men that’s deaaad as a motha!#@% ain’t they?– Richard Pryor as “Mudbone”May 7, 2016 at 3:14 pm #30166
My son has been riding most of his life and is now in college with a Honda reflex. He bought it himself but even as an experienced rider I worry. Not so much about him but the clueless drivers of cars all around him. He has a great helmet (very expensive) His Dad tells him constantly "trust no driver of a car" but don't be timid, just very aware.
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