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First set of Leathers or other protection

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Post  kenndo1 Sun Feb 19 2012, 18:40

Hi all,

It has become high time for me to get some proper protection as my existing kit will not offer much protection in the event of an accident and also as I am now regularly commuting back to London which is a round trip of around 240 miles.

I am an absolute novice when it comes leather or other protection, but to help narrow the criteria the following will probably help:

1.Budget is not huge as I am a student, maximum 400-500 pounds at absolute most probably 300-400 would be more manageable but if there is a significant gap between the protection offered by kit that is 1 or 2 hundred pounds dearer than Im willing to stretch a bit more cash.

2. I heard leathers offer the best protection but are not waterproof and can crack. Also with the budget would it be advisable to get kit that will be usable all year round rather than 2 sets of kit (winter-summer).

3. It needs to be practical as I use the bike to commute every day. Do i go for leathers or other type of protection.

4. Kit required are Jacket and Trousers (or full suit depending on what is recommended), Boots, Gloves and other protection. Already have a decent helmet.

5. I am about 6 foot tall, relatively slim and about 11.5 stone (although starting to hit the gym and planning to gain a stone or 2 over next 6 months)

Thanks in advance!

Ollie

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Post  Rampers Sun Feb 19 2012, 19:01

Hi ollie,
I use a Frank Thomas jacket that cost me around £170 whilst shopping for that I cam across a pair of Kevlar lined bike jeans with CE approved armour in the knees for £100 my gloves were £40 and my boots are waterproof sidi boot that were £150. If it rains I keep a pair of cheap waterproof trousers under the seat as normal waterproof bike trousers could cost a pretty penny.

I would shop around to see what's cheaper as there are loads of deals around

Hope it helps buddy
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Post  Wooster Sun Feb 19 2012, 20:13

Denim is extremely poor when wet, and the 'jeans' are probably best left to those 40+ fashion victims where the stuff appears to be de rigueur.
...Fair enough for walking around in, but the ones they make for biking are like 1980's Bobby Washables. green smile

(I'm 45 btw )

Leathers are fine if you plan to fall off on lovely flat racetracks on a regular basis, since they don't fall to bits, but you'll sweat your arse off in hot weather, and you don't see anyone using them in winter.
Long story short, go for something breathable like GoreTex or similar. They're light, comfortable and the armour is usually upgradeable.
(If they don't work well in monsoon conditions, you can augment them with cheap waterproof shells that will roll up and fit under the seat*)


*-edit- 'course you can do this with any of the clothes you choose.



Last edited by Wooster on Sun Feb 19 2012, 20:19; edited 1 time in total
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Post  HEHORE Sun Feb 19 2012, 20:16

I use buffalo textile jacket (spear) and trousers (eagle) (from ghostbikes ) , buffalo path finder gloves(m and p ) , and looking into getting oxford bonedry boots , all in all cost of £200 boots being about £80 jacket was £35 and trousers £65, gloves £18 had no problems , and fit in a ruck sack so when I go out Im not stuck wearing it.
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Post  Woody Sun Feb 19 2012, 21:06

get yourself some bargains at the bmf show in may. go to one of the big tents and wait until they offer buy one get one free. Leathers are an absolute bargain there. You can get leather trousers and jacket for 40 quid. Sure they'll have some textile stuff as well. Kitted myself out with leathers , boots, gloves and lid for total of £220- all decent branded stuff.
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Post  stretchie_ Sun Feb 19 2012, 21:38

I'd say that a set of leathers and a set of textiles are the way to go but money adds up.

What I did was buy a set of leathers and a waterproof oversuit until I could afford a set of textiles too. You'll get sweaty but I think you'll be hard pressed to buy a suit that will fit all weather types throughout the year.

Have a look below. I bought my leathers from here for £300 in 2005.

[You must be registered and logged in to see this link.]

The textiles I've currently got I bought from Fowlers in Bristol for £350 for jacket and trousers and they are roasty toasty in the cold and nice and dry in the wet. The only thing I don't like is that they only zip together at the back and not all the way around.

You'll get fully suited at J&S for a decent price
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Post  HEHORE Sun Feb 19 2012, 21:46

I'm off to j and s in the morning to get boots , brilliant shop
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Post  mrfrance Sun Feb 19 2012, 21:51

I commute everyday and wear a Frank Thomas textile jacket which cost £50 and is very warm and keeps the water out no matter how hard it rains, I also use goretex rucka trousers which are about £70 quid and work wonders.. its very hard to get absolute waterproof trousers as you always end up with a wet crotch!! angry

I also have a set of brand new leathers which are custom made to measure for £150 of ebay! Have not actually used them yet but they seem good quality!

It is important to get something which is comfortable, textiles are better for all year round especially if they have removable thermal liners. Plus they are better for wearing over your clothes where as with most leathers you will not be able to do this without feeling extremely uncomfortable and get soaked in sweat (in the summer) or freeze to death in the winter!

Hope this helps!

Paul
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Post  Wooster Sun Feb 19 2012, 23:05

I bought the Hein Gericke Tricky II kit (the trousers later, once I'd saved up a bit) and they've been ideal for three years.
...the odd bit of wicking, but nothing is 100% waterproof except maybe a drysuit. Wink

I don't commute though, that's another ball game entirely.
(You'd probably be looking at a drysuit.. green smile )
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Post  Panzerbuilder Sun Feb 19 2012, 23:35

I've got HG textile tops and bottoms, cw protection abot £300 notes 2 years ago. Still okay now. (lifetime guarantee as well i think)

Water proof and warm.

I also have a leather jacket and dragguin jeans as well but that is purely for warmer and dry days.

Rich
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Post  bobh Mon Feb 20 2012, 01:00

A decent set of textiles with removable liners should cover almost all the climatic conditions we get in Britain - make sure there's plenty of room underneath for layering.

Ride mag are always doing "Which"-type tests. Recommended ones in their "Budget textile suits" category (their idea of "budget" is a bit more generous than mine) are Halvarssons, Weise and RST.

Having said that one suit can do the lot, personally I have three lots of kit for different seasons. My logic is that it's important to always be as comfortable as possible so you can concentrate on your riding. Plus the kit should last a longer if it's not being used every day of the year, so won't cost any more in the long run.

Most of my stuf has been picked up at various times in sales or as special offers. For winter I have a Weise jacket which cost £50 many years ago - it's been re-proofed a few times and is now getting a bit frayed so really it ought to be replaced, but you know how it is with something that just feels right. I use it with Spada pants which were about £80. These only have a short zip at the back.

For autumn and spring, last year I bought a medium-weight Hein Gericke suit, probably cost about £200 total as I only buy stuff from them when they have a 25% offer or similar. THese have a full zip, which is a bit of a fiddle.

Then when and if it gets reasonably warm I have a pair of leather pants (again bought ages ago for about £50) that I normally use with a Spyke textile jacket - £40 in the late-lamented George White outlet store. In case of rain I carry a pair of cheap waterproof pants under the seat. I really don't like one-piece waterproofs.

Whatever you get, make sure that the jacket either has proper back armour or a pocket to take a decent back pad - a lot of the cheaper ones come with just a foam pad, which is next to useless. A proper back protector would be even better, but I wouldn't want to wear one on a long commute.
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Post  past-it Mon Feb 20 2012, 17:05

I've got a set of Hein Gericke water proof 2 piece leathers, soft armour, removable liners, and i would never use them to go to and fro work because leather is a pain to clean and when they're wet they take ages to dry. So for every day riding I wear a Hein Gericke textile jacket, hard armour and removable liner. Its been cleaned twice in 6 years and the only place I get wet is a area by the left hand chest vent. As for the bottoms I wear a cheap set of textile trousers and on longer trips in heavy rain (10 miles plus) the only bit that gets wet is the bit you sit on [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.] so I wear yellow/reflective over trousers from Tool Station ( £8 ). Under the textiles I only wear normal working clothes and in 6 years of riding I've never felt cold, chilled at times but not cold. The bike has heated grips and I wear Hein Gericke 2 finger gloves in cold weather. The fairing on the Cat is very good at protecting the rider if you are traveling at the speed limit.
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Post  kwakkat Mon Feb 20 2012, 18:48

i have 2 set 1 leather
1 textile 2 removable liner,s
1 for warmth
1 for waterproof
1 set of gortex alpine boots good in all weather,s
set of winter glove with extra liner,s with finger wipe for rain on visor
shop around look for bike shops closing down & sale
somecheap textile are not fully water proof if so get a light weight rain jacket & wear underneat
also a under body suit for keeping you warm & dry in all weather
try to buy the best
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Post  TomCom Mon Feb 20 2012, 18:57

i have "spada" camouflage set
around 90 for trousers , around 80 for jacket.
waterproof and have ARMOUR in it.
its not leather , its Textile
VERY COMFORTABLE
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Post  Snowcat Mon Feb 20 2012, 19:45

It's a shame George White went to the wall, bargains a plenty to be had in there, the old adage of you get what you pay for strikes true although there are bargains to be had all around. eBay, Ghostbikes and J & S are all good for bargains.

I have a textile set (Buffalo & Oxford) bought from Ghostbikes for less than £100yhe pair, both waterproof and with removable liners, warm and dry in winter, cooler in the summer and comfortable. Also invested in a set of Frank Thomas 2 piece leathers from GW for less than £200.

Echo previous posts, bargains also to be had at bike shows and rallies. At the NEC for example you could get decent set of leathers with armour for less than £100!!

If you can only afford 1 go with the textile for now as they are a lot more versatile Smile
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Post  alext Mon Feb 20 2012, 23:21

I've got a Richa leather jacket which cost £120 from fowlers, not particularly warm and doesn't keep me dry but I guess it'll give good protection.
My trousers are Richa textile ones which cost £150 from fowlers. They have a thermal lining and a waterproof lining and have kept me bone dry in the heaviest rain. The linings are easy to remove in the summer as well so they're not too sweaty. I'd def recommend them! They feel quite padded and well protected as well and give the impression they'd offer good protection if I was to come off.
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Post  HEHORE Tue Feb 21 2012, 00:18

brought these boots today , must say there quite nice and comfy soo far , but i have only worn them for 12 hours link
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Post  mrfrance Tue Feb 21 2012, 09:23

brought these boots today , must say there quite nice and comfy soo far , but i have only worn them for 12 hours

There not brown are they? Sick lol!
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Post  Rampers Tue Feb 21 2012, 09:25

I think it was the lighting that they were using
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Post  HEHORE Tue Feb 21 2012, 10:48

mrfrance wrote:
brought these boots today , must say there quite nice and comfy soo far , but i have only worn them for 12 hours

There not brown are they? Sick lol!
No the are black , if you look between the boots at the shadow its black , there lighting is bad
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Post  kenndo1 Tue Feb 21 2012, 11:37

Thanks for the replies, tt sounds like Gore Tex or Textiles are my best bet for something that will be appropriate for all seasons.

I think i may get an extra leather jacket for the summer too.

Does anybody know what the deal is with George White? Is there going to be a closing down sale or anything?
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Post  Rampers Tue Feb 21 2012, 12:29

Kenndo I have a black Frank Thomas cafe racer style jacket that I brought about 5years ago I wore it as a fashion thing really so it's never been ridden in and I'm never going to wear it again but I was going to put it up on flea bay for about £50 it has all the armour that it came with. If your interested I can email you over a pic and it will save you some pennies and I can have some space back in my wardrobe
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Post  Snowcat Tue Feb 21 2012, 13:35

kenndo1 wrote:Does anybody know what the deal is with George White? Is there going to be a closing down sale or anything?
As I posted on a previous thread saw the guys from helmet manufacturer Shark clearing all their stock out of the one close to me, i assume others will do the same, get their products back and GR will go for good, no big sale me thinks!!
:(
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Post  MrNutt Tue Feb 21 2012, 14:20

Kendo, I am just about to fork out for some good textiles, have a look at jofma lindstrands, can be a bit costly compared to some of the stuff mentioned but its very very good gear, already got 3 sets of their gloves, one leather jacket and some jeans and cant fault them at all, all the new 2012 gear is about to come out, so might be able to look round and get some deals on the older gear.
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Post  Rosco Wed Feb 22 2012, 11:31

past-it wrote:I've got a set of Hein Gericke water proof 2 piece leathers, soft armour, removable liners, and i would never use them to go to and fro work because leather is a pain to clean and when they're wet they take ages to dry. So for every day riding I wear a Hein Gericke textile jacket, hard armour and removable liner. Its been cleaned twice in 6 years and the only place I get wet is a area by the left hand chest vent. As for the bottoms I wear a cheap set of textile trousers and on longer trips in heavy rain (10 miles plus) the only bit that gets wet is the bit you sit on [You must be registered and logged in to see this image.] so I wear yellow/reflective over trousers from Tool Station ( £8 ). Under the textiles I only wear normal working clothes and in 6 years of riding I've never felt cold, chilled at times but not cold. The bike has heated grips and I wear Hein Gericke 2 finger gloves in cold weather. The fairing on the Cat is very good at protecting the rider if you are traveling at the speed limit.

I'll pop in to tool station for a look at dem £8 yellow over trousers.
Sounds like a bargain.
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