Motorcycle Words

a motorcyclist's blog

Tag: review (page 1 of 5)

HaloCam Dash Cam Review | wBW

Dashcam’s for motorcycles are relatively few and far between, especially compared to the various options for cars.  In fact, the only other “dashcam” style unit reviewed previously at webBikeWorld was the Innovv K1 back in 2015.

Since then many inexpensive camera systems that could be used as dashcams for motorcycles have popped up at places like eBay and Amazon. Often these cameras seem priced so low that the adage “Too good to be true.”  can drive many potential buyers away.

Then a couple of months ago I became aware of a new camera system that falls into what I considered the “sweet spot” in price and features. I wanted to find out if this system is really the happy medium solution for motorcycle dashcams it appeared to be. Hit the link to the review on webBikeWorld to find out.

Rev’It Sand 3 Gloves Review

Product: Rev’It Sand 3 Gloves
Manufacturer: REV’IT
Made In: China
Sizes: Small to 4XL
Color(s): Black, Black/Silver, Black/Red, Sand
Price: $109.99 (USD) @ Revzilla

Introduction

Beating the Summer heat for the motorcycle rider is always a challenge. Protective gear can be stifling in the hot and humid Summers here in the Southeastern United States. Earlier this year I reviewed the Orsa  Leather MkII gloves from Knox that I have put to use for hot weather riding since 2017. Those gloves are very protective and look the part for sport riding gloves.

Always being interested in what the next new thing might be I started looking for a new pair of gloves for 2018. Back in 2017, REV’IT released an update to the Sand Pro gloves, the Sand 3. The description ticked all the right boxes and they were available in a smart looking brown color. Certainly the color won’t affect comfort or protection but they do look cool (in my opinion).

Let’s dig into the details.

The Rev’It Sand 3 Glove

The Sand 3 gloves take up the torch from the Sand Pro gloves as their mid-range off-road/street hybrid glove. These are a worthy successor to that popular glove and it ups the ante in protective features and the looks are nicely updated as well.

The Sand 3’s are available in four colors including black, black/silver, black/silver/red, and of course, sand. Sand being unique from the other colors as the leather for the palm and underside of the fingers is brown. It gives this colorway a distinctive look from the other black based designs but obviously does not offer as much visibility as the color choices that incorporate silver.

In the sand colorway brown accents are also found on the back of the hand in a diagonal strip of fabric as well as on small accordion stretch panels on the top first three fingers The diagonal strip has the REV’IT logo in it while the short gauntlet has the three-sided REV’IT graphic sitting on top of a three sided piece of TPU.

One of the unique stylistic and functional features of the Sand 3 gloves is the flexible TPU material used for impact protection in various places on these gloves. These protectors are made up of a matrix of hexagonal shapes in a similar fashion to REV’IT’s SeeSmart armor. This armor gives the gloves an uncommon look and combines good protection with good flexibility.

The Sand 3 gloves also offer a simple, but very welcome, feature in the form of a large red loop of fabric and the cuff opening. The heavy duty 1/2 inch (13mm) strap makes pulling these gloves on much easier. This strap provides good leverage and prevents wear on the cuff that would result from the repeated grasping and tugging required to put them on.

One last thing to note is that the tips of the forefinger and thumbs employ REV’IT’s Connect material for use with capacitive touch screen devices. Having been placed on both of those digits makes it easy to zoom on mobile devices which is very handy for using map applications.

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Coming Soon: Druids, Halos, Silica, and More

Photo from manufacturer

Manufacturer photo

Reviews have been a little sparse of late but I have reviews coming soon for webBikeWorld.com as well as Motorcycle Words exclusives. Two pairs of gloves are in currently being put through their paces, one pair from Dainese and another from Rev’IT. I understand I might have a carbon fiber adventure helmet coming in for review as well but that’s all I’m going to say until it lands in my hands.

On the technical side I’ve got a new motorcycle specific “dash-cam” set up freshly installed on the Ninja 1000 and I’m looking to get some footage captured in the coming days. During the installation I connected the camera system DVR module to my Eastern Beaver PC-8 fuse panel and realized I needed to post up mu thoughts on this little gem of a device so that will be coming to a screen near you soon.

Manufacturer photo

Manufacturer photo

Finally, I’ve have been riding with a pair of Fox Racing knee guards in place of my venerable Shift Racing Enforcer guards that I have been wearing for years. The guards from Fox are actually designed for mountain biking but offered a combination of features I could quite find in other moto specific products.  Keep an eye on this space as well as the Motorcycle Words Facebook feed for new content as it becomes available.

Knox Zephyr Summer Riding Jacket Review

Product: Zephyr Summer Riding Jacket
Manufacturer: Knox
Made In: United Kingdom
Sizes: Small to 5XL
Color(s): Black, White and Black
Price: £229.99 (GBP) from Knox / $330.00 (USD) from Revzilla

Introduction

Summer riding gear is always a compromise. Protective riding gear typically requires lots of ventilation for hot weather riding which means mesh materials and/or vents be incorporated into the design. This amounts to a lot of holes which, let’s face it, are going to reduce the integrity of the garment as “air” is not a very good barrier to abrasion.

Full mesh jackets will typically offer the best ventilation for street riding but there are some downsides to the typical mesh jacket. One, most mesh will tear up much faster than a solid textile or perforated leather. Two, all mesh jackets I’ve encountered tend to be a bit loose fitting and the shell is very pliable. This can allow shoulder and elbow armor to move in the event of a crash so it may not be in the ideal position to protect from impact.

Adding solid textile and/or leather to impact zones can help improve abrasion resistance performance at the expense of ventilation. This compromise does improve abrasion resistance but it may not address the often “loose” fit of these type of jackets.

To get around this some riders will go “off label” and use gear that may not be designed for the street or that is not designed to be used as standalone protection. The former often consists of armored off road jackets or shirts where hard armor is attached to a thin mesh shell to provide impact protection. These are typically designed to be worn under a jersey and are not necessarily designed for protecting riders from the types of crashes that can occur on the street.

The latter “off label” item is the armored shirt. These shirts comprise a thin textile shirt with impact protection armor like one would find in a street riding jacket. The protectors are usually softer and designed for the higher speed impacts that can occur in a crash on the street. The problem here is that there is little to no abrasion resistance as these shirts are designed to sit under a proper street riding jacket.

The drawbacks mentioned above are not always enough to deter some riders from going those routes in order to beat the heat. Those willing to accept the risk will wear these items and hope for the best. If there was only a happy medium….

Well, maybe there is.

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Scorpion EXO R420 Helmet | wBW

Scorpion continues to improve their class-leading 400 series helmets with EXO R420 and webBikeWorld recently sent me one for review. The R420 is more than just some new graphics and colors but instead is a rethinking of the 400 series from the inside and out. The internal shape has been changed as well as the lines of the exterior shell.

Solid construction combined with a Snell rating means one is getting good protection for around $150.00 (USD) and it looks good doing it. The EXO-R420 has a lot to live up to with the EXO-400 series helmets offering very good value as well as fit and finish that bests many helmets costing significantly more. My initial impression when handling and examining the helmet out of the box is that the EXO-R420 might very well be a worthy successor.

Click here for the complete review over at webBikeWorld.com.

Trilobite 1860 Ton Up Jeans Review | wBW

My latest review for webbikeworld.com takes a look at the 1860 Ton Up jeans from Trilobite. These jeans are part of a new trend where apparel manufacturers are putting together motorcycle riding jeans that do not have an extra abrasion resistant layer. Instead, Dyneema ®  is used in the denim itself to create a sort of “super” denim that looks and feels (mostly) like normal cotton denim but can meet the abrasion resistance required for a CE level 1 (or better).

This material combined with traditional blue jean styling makes for a pretty stealthy pair of riding jeans. By just looking at them one would be hard pressed to tell they are protective riding gear. Add in the included hip and knee armor and the Ton Up jeans would appear to be the whole package, but all this comes at a price. What is that price exactly? Hit the link below to find out.

Trilobite 1860 Ton-Up Jeans

Visorcat System Available at Aerostitch

In December 2017, I reviewed a hand/glove mounted helmet visor cleaning system from Visorcat. The Visorcat is a unique solution that allows one to clear road grime and other debris from their field of view. This system includes a sponge,  squeegee, and cleaning fluid all wrapped up in a neat little package.

At the time of the review the Visorcat was not available via dealers in the United States. That situation has now changed as Visorcat just reached out to me and let me know that Aerostitch is now a dealer for their product. At this time the system can be purchased at this link but so far it only includes the whole system. There isn’t a link yet for refills of fluid and the sponges but I will be looking into when these are expected to be available.

Full review at wBW here.

 

Pilot Motosports Elipsol Jacket Review | wBW

My latest review for webBikeWorld of Pilot Motosport’s Elipsol jacket is now posted. The Elipsol is a new offering from Pilot which combines the ventilation of mesh panels with the utility of an adventure jacket plus a “dash” of sporty cut thrown in for good measure.

I’ve been a fan of Pilot’s gear since I started reviewing it for webBikeWorld a couple of years ago. I have found their apparel to offer a very good balance of quality, design, and value with some subtle innovative touches that go a lot further in real world use than one might think.

The Elipsol continues this tradition in a package package that can easily take on three seasons and then some. Mesh paneling plus two liners make it easy to adapt to varying weather conditions. Combined with a surprising amount of storage space, the Elipsol  is the most versatile jacket in Pilot’s lineup and offers good competition to offerings from other manufactures in this segment.

Check out the full review over at webBikeWorld.com

Pilot Motosports – Elipsol Air Jacket

Hit-Air MLV-C Airbag Vest – Preview

Product: MLV-C Airbag Vest
Manufacturer: Hit-Air
Sizes: Medium (covers S – XL), Large (covers XL-3XL)
Color(s): Black, White, Red, Blue, Brown, plus special edition colors
Made In: Japan
Price: $479.00 base ($509.00 as tested)


Introduction

Recently I posted that I had purchased an airbag vest so as one can tell from the title of this writing, I chose to go with the Hit-Air MLV-C Airbag vest. Here’s a look at why I chose the Hit-Air brand and why I chose to go with a vest instead of an airbag integrated jacket.

Why Hit-Air over Helite?

The two major players in the motorcycle airbag vest/jacket arena are arguably Hit-Air and Helite. There are also a handful of others making vests using a tethered system like the one used on these devices. After a lot of research I chose to go with the Hit-Air brand.

(Note: There are options from Dainese and Alpinestars that use electronic sensors to activate their airbags but I wanted to focus on the tethered systems for this review)

Deciding wasn’t easy as both manufacturers offer a quality product. Helite, for there part, does a bit more marketing than Hit-Air so their name may be more familiar. Marketing isn’t everything (but sometimes it is, I’m looking at you Betamax) and I wouldn’t have guessed that Hit-Air got started several years before Helite based solely on name recognition alone.

In terms of options, Helite has three with their Turtle vest, a race version, and a custom leather option. Hit-Air has several offerings for vests, seven by my count, and that is just the vest options. There also appears to be 13 jackets available from Hit-Air that include their airbag technology so Hit-Air has the most variety of options.

The Helite Turtle vest has an integrated back protector that sits over the inflation bags in the vest. This is a great feature for impact protection. The Hit-Air vest offers optional back protectors for their vests that installs via hook and loop fastener on the inner side of the vest under the airbag.

I like the optional nature of the back protector in this case, especially since I have CE level 2 back protectors installed in my riding jackets already. This last point I would consider a toss-up so no points either way. In the end I chose the Hit-Air, but then I had to answer the next question…

Which one?! Read on to find out.

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HJC RPHA70 ST Review | WBW

If there were an official “household” name in motorcycle helmets, HJC would/could likely be that name, especially here in the in the United States. According to HJC, they have been the number one selling motorcycle helmet brand in the States since 1992 and has achieved this by offering a balance of good quality and reasonable price. As such, HJC has not been the most expensive or inexpensive choice around and has excelled at dominating the mid-range market.

      

My first motorcycle helmet was an HJC full-face model in 1993. I don’t recall much about it except it was black, full-face, and it did the job. I believe it was right around the $100.00 mark which fit well in my meager budget at the time. Since that first helmet I’ve had some other helmets from HJC but haven’t owned one in the past few years. When HJC provided a RPHA 70 ST for review, I jumped at the chance to check it out and see their latest and greatest.

Click here to see the complete review over at webBikeWorld.com.

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