With my big trip now just around the corner (so it seems), I have been spending a lot of time going over what I need to finish up before I start.
On that long list of items, I had new motorcycle gear.
Gear is a huge expense, something that I must say that I cringe every time I have to buy new gear.
At present, I currently have in my possession 4 helmets, 3 pairs of boots, 8 pairs of gloves, 2 jackets, and 2 pairs of pants and 1 one-piece leather racing suit.
So when I made the decision to buy all new gear for this trip, it came as no surprise that the gear I would be purchasing, would be more tailored for the style of riding I would be performing.
First up on the list was a new Jacket.
My current jacket, which I will be doing a review of next month, has actually served me well. I don’t have a whole lot of complaints about it, but it is showing signs of wear. And while it performs adequately in the cooler season, as well as the warmer ones with it’s removable quilted liner and multiple vents (9 in total to be exact. 3 back vents, 4 chest vents, 2 arm vents), its performance in the rain is lacking. Even with keeping up on the water proofing with either Nikwax or Obenaufs, it just wasn’t made to withstand the northwest wet season.
So when it came to looking for a new jacket, I had a fairly simple list of criteria (ok, maybe not entirely simple).
Above all else, it has to be rain proof. I do live in the Seattle area.
Secondly, it has to have a removable liner, and be vented.
Thirdly, it has to be a a 3/4 cut (Long Cut), and plenty of pockets (I love pockets!)
I spent some time looking at the offerings of the different manufactures out there. Everything from First Gear to Rev-It.
Another criteria I had, is it had to be cost effective for me. I had a number in my head that I wanted to spend on a Jacket and Pants. What that number was, changed from day to day.
I’m not a fashion freak, so last years “colors” or last years “styles” don’t effect me. So I did spend a lot of time looking at clearance items offered by various manufactures. I do however have my “ideal” colors I like. I’m not a fan of black for a jacket. Pants don’t bother me, but I’d rather the jacket not be entirely of black material, but if it had plenty of reflective material, I would be open to a black jacket.
So it was during my browsing of various manufactures sites, reading about jackets, spending time typing in Google for reviews, and hitting up Advrider and searching to see what other people have said about certain products, that I remembered seeing a company while at IMS that had an offering of Jackets and Pants.
After trying to rack my brain for a bit, I finally came to remember the name, British Motorcycle Gear (BMG).
Myself and my friend Tony, whom accompanied me to the show, both took a moment to look at their offerings of Jackets, Pants, and other motorcycle gear.
Unfortunately at the time, I was not in the market for a jacket or pants right away. I was more concerned with trying to get the attention of the Gerbing Sales Staff to buy a pair of heated gloves who was situated somewhat cattywompus to the BMG booth. After failing to get the attention of staff (trust me, I stood around for awhile and watched other people get helped that showed up later. I was rater irate after awhile, and Tony was done with his browsing so I decided to head out.
So with a quick Google search, I located BMG’s website and began to look again at the details of their offerings.
I opted to contact sales through email to have them assist me with what best fit my needs in what I was looking for. I gave them my purpose, use, and types of weather I ride in, as well as my frequency of riding (Daily).
What impressed me the most, was the immediate response I received from Paul, and his recommendation of the Discovery Jacket.
After some back and forth throughout the day, taking the time to find reviews and read first hand experiences with the jacket, at around 7pm last night, I sent Paul a message that I would like to purchase the jacket along with a pair of their Ezeon Pants.
From start to finish, Paul answered all of my questions, and provided me with more than enough information to make my decision, even giving me other Manufacture’s names to look at if I didn’t find BMG’s offerings to be suitable for my needs.
Next up on my list was boots.
I had already researched boots over the months, and actually read a lot of good reviews on the boots I wanted. I had my mind made up several months ago.
The boots I ended up purchasing were the TCX Infinity Gore-Tex boots.
I’ve read really good reports on these boots. I also like the design of them with the buckles, the elastic cuff to keep water and debris out, and the overall look.
TCX is the remnants of the original Oxtar Brand of boots. I have over the years been extremely happy with the quality, fit, and finish of my Oxtar boots, which I use exclusively for my Road Racing, and have taken a bit of abuse.
The Infinity Gore-Tex caught my eye as being a great hybrid between a sport touring boot, and MX boot. Something that would provide adequate protection while still allowing a comfortable fit off the bike.
My biggest concern is that they provide adequate protection from the elements. Above all else, I am mostly concerned with the wet. My current boots, which I have been wearing for 4 years now, have proven to be amazing boots. In fact, if it wasn’t for the fact that I was looking for something with a bit less flex, I would have purchased another pair.
Not only are they water proof, but they also have thinsulate lining, that keeps my feet warm year round. Having worn through one set of soles already on the boots (I wear them daily), I can honestly say the quality of them has been top notch, so switching to something else came with a lot of forethought.
I have high hopes for these boots, and hope that they provide me with the same satisfaction as my Oxtar boots have before.
The last bit of gear I purchased for my trip, is a new Shoei Hornet DS Sonora in Orange and Black.
I’ve been wanting a dual sport helmet for awhile now. Not because they look absolutely awesome, but because of the features they do offer.
For those not aware, Dual Sport Helmets incorporate the best of both full face street helmets, as well as MX helmets.
For starters, it incorporates the visor of MX Helmet, while still retaining face shield of your typical street helmet.
While it does have a shield, it can be rotated up and out of the way so that one can also wear goggles if they so desire in MX Fashion.
The visors can also be removed if you desire as well, making these extremely versatile helmets.
The purchase of this helmet actually comes in 2 weeks after purchasing an MX Helmet, the Bell Moto-8, which I purchased for an extremely low price through Motorcycle Closeouts.
My plans for the Moto-8 is to use it during the hot, dry summer months. I am looking forward to using this helmet more for my longer trips, where I may run into adverse weather, as well as my daily commute in the cooler, drizzly months.
So that pretty much wraps up my new gear. You probably noticed that I didn’t mention gloves, and that is because I actually bought a new pair a few months ago, which are heated gloves! I have plenty of gloves, and already have the gloves I want for the trip, which I wear almost daily anyways in the warmer, dryer months. With a pair of glove liners, they are good down to about 45 degree’s. I will be taking along these as well as another pair of gloves for when it gets wet.
Until Next Time