Choosing the Right Gear

Head Scratch

The two key things when choosing motorcycle clothing are comfort and protection. Once these two are cracked, the next decision makers become style and price. Trying to get all four items to your liking is a near impossibility especially as there is a wide selection of bike gear out there and dealers tend to stock what sells. This means that if you are an odd size or your taste isn’t sports bike or moto-x then your options are going to be limited and you will have to hunt down the gear you want.

This is also the case where your destination dictates different gear to what is normally required for UK roads and UK weather. So we knew that finding comfortable riding gear for 2,500 miles of mostly dry and highish temperatures in the US wasn’t going to be easy.

Our quest started off with looking for mesh jackets to keep us cool. We then moved onto cool trousers and gloves. With Fran├žoise sometimes feeling drowsy on the back of the bike and me wanting to have a working communication system meant that we would be looking at new helmets with lots of fresh air and designed to accept some kind of comms system.

Once we had thought of that, our attention turned to boots. What might be bearable in cool-to-warm UK for a 60-mile journey might not be the right thing for hot feet doing 250 miles per day for 10 days and so boots were added to the list.

To round it off, we will also need to re-visit compact waterproof over-jackets and trousers in case we meet with a downpour. As there will only be space for one set of riding gear each, we don’t relish the thought of not being able to gear dry enough to ride in comfort the following day so we want to cover all angles.

So, choosing the right gear means searching the web, asking lots of questions of forums, and visiting lots of dealers to see what they have. We have seen many things and are close to buying something in one or two areas but stock availability, colour and size issues seem to get in the way. One of the biggest problems has been identifying the dealers who have what we want. Contact with importers and distributors to ask which of their dealers sell what hasn’t been too fruitful with many of them suggesting that I ring around. That becomes very time consuming and frustrating. Fortunately, there are one or two dealers who are willing to order things in for us and they deserve a pat on the back. Once we are sorted, I’ll mention what we settled on, who supplied it, and add the dealer(s) to the Links list.

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