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Klim Ai-1 Airbag Vest Review on WebBikeWorld

Since early 2018, I’ve made an airbag vest part of my riding gear. I decided to invest in an airbag vest after I spent 2017 using a race collar from EVS as a way to help prevent/reduce neck injury in the event of a crash. I’m willing to admit, as I get older, I care more about potential injuries.

After a year of wearing the race collar, I started looking into airbag vests. Airbag vests aren’t exactly new to the protective gear landscape having been around for about 30 years, but they’ve seemed to linger on the horizon, rather than at the forefront of motorcycle safety gear.

 

Looking into how airbag vests and airbag jackets worked, I found most of them not only protect your chest and back but many designs will immobilize your head (when wearing a full face helmet) enough to help reduce/prevent neck injuries.
I was sold! But which one should I get?

The old guard of Helite and Hit-Air use physically tethered systems which rely on a lanyard attached to the motorcycle to activate the airbag. Dainese and Alpinestars introduced systems a few years ago that use electronic sensor packages to determine when a crash is occurring and deploy the airbag. Both systems have their strengths and weaknesses.

Mechanical systems are less expensive and often the user can easily repack a Hit-Air or Helite device and replace the compressed air cartridge. Assuming the airbag isn’t damaged, the rider can continue on their merry way. These airbag systems are typically in the form of a vest that goes over existing riding gear or the airbag system is integrated into a jacket for an all-in-one solution.

Dainese, Alpinestars, and now Klim, offer electronically triggered (non-tethered) systems. These systems can be used with dedicated apparel as well as most other jackets assuming they offer enough room for deployment. In the case of Dainese (D-Air Smart Jacket), one can even use their system on top of a jacket. 

Note: Helite recently released their own electronically activated airbag vests, the e-Turtle and e-GP Air, but they do not appear to be available yet in North America. I’m sure once they become available we’ll have a look at these as well.

For the full review and more details and photo head over to webbikeworld.com.

REV’IT! Dirt 3 Gloves Review

Overview

The Dirt 3 gloves from REV’IT! are a short-cuff option geared towards the adventure rider. Similar in overall form and mission to the Sand 3 gloves, the Dirt 3 gloves have a bit more mesh and offer a more traditional take on the knuckle armor along with some other minor differences. They represent a good option for hot weather riders in the adventure space as well as the commuting and other types of riding.

Introduction

Earlier this year I took a look at the Alpinestars SP Air gloves as an option for a protective hot-weather glove and they provided a good balance of protection versus ventilation. However, they had some other issues that kept me looking for another summer glove option.

2020 has not only been a year of massive changes and reassessment of what is normal, but it has also been very hot and humid here in Middle Tennessee. This heat and humidity have been a driver for me to look into a pair of gloves with increased ventilation.

Back in 2018, I reviewed a pair of Sand 3 gloves from REV’IT! and while they ticked a lot of the right boxes, I decided to let them go in favor of keeping the Knox Orsa Leather MkII gloves I already owned.

A couple of months ago I heard (OK, read) on the ADVRider forums about the Dirt 3 gloves from REV’IT!. The Dirt 3 gloves were described as similar to the Sand 3 gloves but with some different armor and ventilation features.

These I had to see…

Check out the complete review over at WebBikeWorld.com

Dainese New Drake Air Textile Pants Review – WebBikeWorld

Summary

The New Drake Air Textile pants from Dainese might not look like what one would think of for summer/hot weather riding pants but looks can be deceiving. Venting is better than expected and the trade off of protection from solid textile versus use of mesh appears to be worth it.

Introduction

At the time of this writing, the first official day of Summer is only a couple of weeks away. As such, it’s time to start breaking out the hot weather riding gear. A lot of riders will be reaching for riding gear that includes mesh fabrics in the construction. I’m one of those riders and I’ll be the first to admit that a lot mesh gear is a compromise between ventilation and protection. 

For my jacket, I currently wear a Knox Zephyr (first gen) which is a combination of a very tough mesh material and solid, abrasion resistant fabric. In this case, I feel the mesh material is strong enough and well placed that the jacket itself should offer reasonable protection for street riding. The Zephyr is also close fitting so the armor installed should remain in place during a crash. 

As far as pants go, that’s a different story. My current mesh pants are a pair of Olympia AirGlide pants which I wear as overpants for commuting duties. Like most mesh/textile pants, these are loose fitting so while they work fine as overpants, they are too loose, in my opinion, for standalone use when riding. 

By the way, in case the powers-that-be at Knox Armour are reading this, if a pair of pants designed in a similar way as the Zephyr jacket became a reality, I’d be first in line to buy a pair. Just sayin’   -B

I’ve also found that mesh pants that include mesh at the shin area can actually be a “cooling liability” as engine heat can get straight to one’s lower legs. Not all bikes create this problem but my Triumph Sprint 1050 did and my Ninja 1000 does expel some waste heat at the ankle/shin level. In these cases I’d rather have something solid blocking the wind in that area.

The point is that my current riding gear didn’t really include a pair of pants that worked well for hot weather riding, commuting aside. The hunt was now on for a pair of riding pants that had a mix of ventilation and protection that also didn’t break the bank and here’s where I landed.

Check out the complete review over at webBikeWorld.com

The Forcefield AR Knee Protectors

Summary:
The AR Knee Protectors from Forcefield offers an alternative to integrated knee protectors in motorcycle riding pants. Fitting snugly against the knee (under or over riding pants) they will stay in place better in the event of a crash than armor installed in most protective riding pants. Unlike many standalone knee protectors, these can be used for street riding as well as off-road.

For many years now I have employed “ATGATT” when I ride. In my case, especially when commuting, this means I am wearing over-pants or other riding pants that will fit over work clothes. Being roomy enough to handle this situation means that the armor in these pants might not be held securely enough to remain in place in the event of a crash.

To mitigate this situation, for the past several years I have been removing the installed armor in my riding pants and have instead used MX style knee protectors in their stead. I’ve had protectors from Alpinestars, Thor, and Shift Racing over the years and they’ve served me well.

The problem with the aforementioned protectors is that they are not designed for street riding. I have used them with the idea I would rather have protectors I know will stay in place offering some protection, rather than the risk of suitable protectors not remaining in place when I need them.

So is there a better way?

WebBikeWorld was recently offered a chance to review the AR Knee Protectors from Forcefield and I jumped at the chance to try out some armor that might be the best of both worlds. Hit the link here to check out the full review.

Cousin Jeremy 2 Piece Suit | Part 2

It’s not often that I write a multi-part review but I felt it was necessary in the case of the Cousin Jeremy suit. I wanted to be able to not only describe the details of the suit but also be able to report on how the suit it breaks in and how this impacts comfort and fit.

This installment over at webBikeWorld will also take a look at the protective features of the Cousin Jeremy as well as details on how Aerostich worked with me to adjust the fit of the suit I was sent.

Check out the complete review here: https://www.webbikeworld.com/aerostich-cousin-jeremy-suit-review-part-two/

In that initial review, I offered a detailed look at the suit and took a deep dive into the construction details of the pants and jacket. If you missed the initial installment of our Cousin Jeremy two-piece suit review you can check it out here.

Knox Nexos Glove Review | WBW

The Nexos gloves to me are the next logical step up in protection from the Orsa Leather MKII gloves which I reviewed previously. Not that the armor and protective features are a huge step above but rather the Nexos gloves have a substantial gauntlet offering protection over a larger area than the short-cuff Orsa gloves.

A black or white and black color scheme is available, with the gloves shown in this review being the latter color scheme. I chose the white as it should be a little cooler on sunny days and, of course, the bright white offers more visibility over the more stealthy all-black version.

Knox offers up the Nexos gloves as either a “Sport” or “Touring” glove depending on how one interprets their website. The description on the Nexos product page refers to them as “The Nexos Sport Glove” but they are listed under the “Touring” category in the product listings. Let’s just call them sport-touring and leave it there.

There are several hard armor pieces on the gloves but they are not as plentiful or large as on a full racing glove. They are also relatively lightweight and flexible which leads them to have easier storage in small spaces over some full-on sport or racing gloves like Knox’s own Handroid gloves.

For the full details head over to WebBikeWorld.com for my complete review.

Arai Defiant-X Helmet Review

I have the new Defiant-X helmet from Arai in the house for evaluation and this one is quite the roller coaster ride. There are ups and downs across the board here which isn’t what I expected from a premium helmet maker like Arai.

Make no mistake the paint, graphics, and finish are superb and this Snell rated helmet is certainly tough and protective but close inspection reveals some minor issues. These would be more easily overlooked on a helmet at half the price, but at over $800.00 (USD) in this particular graphic version, I find these disappointing.

Hit the link here for the full review with all the details and photos.

Sena Prism Wifi Camera Review

This review took a while to get published over at wBW as it fell off of our radar for a bit but better late than never. I have mixed feelings about the Sena Wifi Prism camera.

On the one hand, the camera is very simple to use and the footage can be uploaded to YouTube and edited using the tools on YouTube. On the other hand, serious amateurs and pros looking for edit friendly footage and manual adjustments will find this camera lacking.

The build quality is excellent and everything that is required to start capturing video is included save for a memory card. For a no fuss, no muss solution, this is a good one. For the more fussy of us out there, we might look elsewhere.

Check out the complete review over at WebBikeWorld.com.

The Scorpion EXO ST1400 Review

Scorpion’s latest entry in the full face sport touring helmet space is a carbon fiber, feature-filled orb of protective goodness. This lightweight lid has every option I can think of that would be useful for sport touring riders and does this in a stylish and sporty looking fashion. All of the features do of course add a cost in weight so while the ST1400 is relatively light, it is not quite the lightest in class.

This helmet has a lot to offer with only some minor areas that I feel could be improved / changed. One being the optical quality of the visors. Both visors are OK with the main visor being a bit better than the drop down sun visor but I would like to see less distortion here. Also I would like see some other color/graphic options other than the mostly black options available now.

Check out the full review over at WebBikeWorld.com for all the details and photos of the Scorpion EXO ST1400.

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