USER MANUAL: Buying Motorcycle Gear

USER MANUAL: Buying Motorcycle Gear

There is no denying that motorcycle riding is a high risk activity. Sure we have all seen in the movies, someone riding off into the sunset in just a t-shirt and jeans with a devil-may-care attitude, however we find showing a bit of skin and flesh always looks better when it’s attached to your body. So gear up and ride smart.
Sounds like it goes against your image of the hard arse rebel that gives no f*cks right?  Unfortunately gravel, vehicles and other physical objects give no f*cks about the impact of gravity on your body.  Don’t be discouraged, there is so much rad gear available and it's the sole reason we started this journey back in 2016, to ensure riders have safety, style and comfort that will keep you behind the throttle.   

 

When shopping for your motorcycle gear we always suggest checking your BSCS.
Budget, safety, comfort & style when choosing your overall look.
 

budgetBudget.

Buying motorcycle gear is not cheap, it is an investment that could potentially save your life. It’s easy to spend hundreds (or thousands) of dollars on mods for your bike or the latest iphone, but when it comes to throwing a couple of hundred on a jacket some people seem to freak out. #knowyourworth

 

safetySafety.

Without looking like the Michelin man you can now find gear that will protect you in the worst case scenario.  The impact zones will need extra protection from the slide and grind of an accident.

 

comfortComfort (fit).

The more comfortable you are in your gear, the more relaxed you will be on the bike and the BETTER you will handle your motorcycle when riding.  Find items you would wear on and off the bike. Always consider the weather conditions you are riding in as being overheated or freezing ya nips off will affect your riding skills.

 

styleStyle.

The key parts to riding is confidence and if you look good, you feel good, you throttle good!  As the moto-universe grows and expands so do the options to have gear you can wear on and off the throttle.

 

 

 

INDEX



 




 

 

PROTECTION



Confused by some riders just wearing shorts and a tee? Don’t worry… so are we!
  We call these kind of riders Moto-Nudists (some call them organ donors) because riding in only casual streetwear won’t save your skin, so they are basically naked to the untrained eye. 

Before we get into the details of what gear to buy, we will explain the different safety features available and how certain materials protect your body.

Below is diagram showing the risk category zones of a motorcyclists,
keep these high risk zones in mind when shopping for your gear.
motorcycle risk category zonesImage Source: MotoCAP
TIP: Use the "Safety" filter on our website to refine products via the protection they provide. Armour offers the most protection against impact (Zone 1)  and protective lining & leather offer protection against abrasion (Zone 2).
 

 




what to know about buying leather motorcycle gear

Classic by nature and classic by style there are a multitude of reasons leather never goes out of fashion.  If you are a lover of ‘’Op shopping’’ (aka thrift stores), you will always find real leather making a star appearance as this material can last a lifetime!   When it comes to motorcycle gear, leather continues to hold its fame for being highly abrasion resistant as it literally acts like a second skin.  The thicker the leather the safer it is, yet the heavier it gets, so keep this in mind when comparing price to quality because you don’t want it to weigh you down.  If you are buying brand new, they do take time to break in and mould to your body shape, but once they do you never want to take it off!


Suede is the underside of the animal hide, so it has a soft velvet finish that makes it more pliable to shaping to your body.  The textured finish means it will resist the slide more than standard leather but without the durable outer skin it is susceptible to light/water damage so needs additional protection such as a suede waterproof spray.


TIP: Leathers made from the outer skin will still need some TLC like Leather Seal Wax to protect it from the heat, dirt, rain and grime so it can truly stand the tests of time.   If you are riding out in a downpour, a light rain jacket may be needed to keep you truly dry.

SHOP LEATHER:
Jackets
Pants
Gloves
Shoes




guide to buying textile motorcycle gear

Great news vegans! There is a wide variety of textile made gear that includes armour and protective lining to meet the best safety standards.  Depending on the fabric, an additional feature of textile fibres is the protection against wind and rain, or ventilation in the heat.   


Brands like Corazzo use Cordura, which is a brand of fabric that is made from strong nylon fibres that are often used in luggage such as military canvas bags.  Under a microscope these premium nylon fibres are weaved and locked together tight making it highly abrasion resistant.

SHOP TEXTILE:
Jackets
Pants
Gloves
Vegan Gear




Different types of protective lining in motorcycle gear

Not all heroes wear capes? In fact, they wear protective lining in their outfits from the military all the way to Marvel Avengers!  You may have heard the word “Kevlar'' come up when talking about motorcycle gear, this is one of the most well known brands of when it comes to protective lining.

These types of protective linings are made of strong aramid fibres that are heat resistant. Basically, if you were to come off your motorbike and go sliding down the road, the fibres resist breaking apart and exposing your skin to the surface. The advancement of synthetic material technology continues to grow so we now have many different brands of protective fabrics/fibres that you can find either woven into the material or as lining to the garment.  

TIP: Use search filters to find clothing with “Protective lining”




FUN FACT: DuPont™ Kevlar® Fiber was invented by a woman. Stephanie Kwolek invented the lightweight, stronger-than-steel, fibre in 1965. 

SHOP WITH PROTECTIVE LINING:
Jackets
Pants
Jeans




buying armour for your motorcycle gear

You wouldn’t go into battle without your armour on, so the same rule applies for motorcycling.  Not only does armour absorb the impact force on your body, but it assists on keeping your body in place should you have an accident. If you compare the medical costs of surgery to your armour, you will find that gear wins every time!


You will come across the term “CE Level Approval” which is a European Standard of armour that has been tested in the labs for its effectiveness to resist speed/weight vs gravity.  Level 2 can withstand impact force more than Level 1, however the effectiveness of your armour is determined by how it shapes to your body.  Be sure to get the right size AND ensure it is fitted in the correct position over impact zones.


Different types of motorcycle armour

TIP: Some brands don’t include armour in the final product but usually have specified pockets tailored into the design.



buying reflective motorcycle gear

Notice how cyclists always wear bright colours and fluro lycra?  There is a method to madness - aka- visibility.  Reflective materials will help you shine in the night and during poor weather conditions, these times when motorists on the road don’t see you coming. Why? Because they are generally used to looking out for big objects like other cars, not motorcycles. 


In Australia it’s mandatory to wear a high-vis vest when you are on your learners but even experienced riders will wear them in city traffic, particularly when it's raining or foggy.  Feel like it cramps your style?  Why not get one of our Don’t Be A Dick Vests to really stand out in the traffic and on the open road and spread the word to other motorists on the road ;)

BONUS: Place the code DBAD at the check out and receive a 10% discount on your DBAD Hi-Vis Vest during October 2020.





GEAR



We get that decking out your moto wardrobe is expensive and sometimes you need to go budget until you can really tailor yourself into your ultimate fascinado!  However, we do have interest free payment plans available such as AfterPay and Zip, and if you are spending more than $1k in a transaction on our website, use the 1000CLUB promo code to apply a 5% discount.



 





guide to buying motorcycle helmets


Why so much info?  Because your helmet is the MOST IMPORTANT purchase of all your gear. You should cherish your helmet as it protects that beautiful brain of yours that came up with the decision to be a biker in the first place!


Do NOT buy second hand!!!

We can not stress enough the importance of buying a motorcycle helmet BRAND NEW. Once the helmet has been dropped or in a crash it needs to be replaced!  Remember that saying “Don't judge a book by it's cover”?  The same rule applies for helmets, because even the slightest drop can crack the inner shell that is designed to absorb the impact and once damaged it is rendered useless.

TIP: If your helmet has been properly taken care of and hasn't been damaged in any way, it should be replaced approximately every five years, or less if used regularly.


Open face vs. full face


Open faced helmets allow riders to have a wider view range which some will find safer to wear when riding in heavy traffic/city commute as they feel more tuned into their surroundings. They are generally lighter and are easy to remove (or not, when filling up your tank).  Statistically, full face helmets are your safest option as they are a full shield to your skull including your jawline and can block out the elements of wind, rain and cold on the road.

open face vs full face helmets

Eye protection

Ever gone on a long country road and looked at the front of your car and seen all the bugs splattered across the bumper? Elements flying into your face at high speeds is not pleasant, and your eyes are quite a vital asset for riding... It is essential to protect your eyes on every ride, regardless of the distance. If your helmet doesn’t have a visor be sure to invest in some quality riding glasses or goggles.


TIP: If your helmet visor does not come with an “anti-fog” seal, make sure you get one to place on the inside of a cleaned visor.  Hot and steamy is great for other places but not your line of sight on the road.


Value for your money

Cheaper helmets can cover the safety requirements, however they can be DAMN heavy and uncomfortable. The weight of the helmet is important to check as you will start to feel pressure on your neck and shoulder muscles after long rides. You get what you pay for, so higher end helmets will generally be lighter in weight, but also have improved insulation (wind noise) and ventilation.

 

TIP: Your helmet will need to meet your state/country's safety standards to be able to legally wear it on the road i.e DOT, ECE (Australia uses ECE).


FIT: Measure the widest circumference of your head, right above your eyebrows. It should fit snug so your head doesn't rattle inside the helmet, the padding will mould to your head shape. If it feels too tight against your cheekbones and forehead, go up a size or you may fall victim to headaches which will affect your concentration on the road.

SHOP HELMETS.







guide to buying motorcycle gloves

 

Now, think of any time you have ever tripped over, be it as a child or perhaps one too many drinks... Instinctively the first thing you do to break your fall is use your hands . Regardless of how far you are travelling on the throttle, it is vital to always cover your mitts!

FIT: You want to be able to feel your controls, so your gloves should fit firm with no gap space in the fingertips.
Leather gloves do feel tight and stiff when new, they need time and wear to break in and mould to the shape of your hands.

TIP: Use our search filters to refine features such as; Knuckle Protection, Connect Finger Tip, Vegan etc.

SHOP GLOVES.


 







guide to buying motorcycle jackets

 

Ahhh the centre to the masterpiece of your motorcycle styling!
Do you see yourself as 
The Wild One rocking a classic leather jacket like Marlon Brando, or perhaps the badass biker look isn't exactly your scene? 

Finding a jacket that you would love to wear on and off the bike, one that also meets your safety standards, is a luxury we now have that never used to exist. There are so many types of fabrics and protection to choose from, so browse around find your perfect match!


FIT: To see if the jacket is suitable for riding, try it on and stand in your riding position (squat & extend your arms out), if your movement feels restricted you will need to size up or find a different style to suit your body shape.  

TIP: When you buy a jacket brand new, any material may feel stiff due to the protective finishes in manufacturing, but it will soften after a bit of wear (just like breaking in new shoes).

SHOP JACKETS.




guide to buying the right motorcycle pants

 

Subject to preference, your riding pants should be something you can wear on the daily because unlike your jacket the idea would be your pants stay on after your commute.. Unless it’s Pants Off Friday of course!  

Normal jeans won’t cut it. Motorcycle jeans and pants are designed to have stronger stitching quality, armour and/or protective fibres that will resist breaking apart if you come off your motorcycle and slide across the gravel.


FIT:  If you can’t do a basic squat in your pants you are going to notice the restrictions when riding your motorbike. In the squat test, make sure it covers your crack, no one wants to see a “plumber” on the road.

TIP for Femmes: If jeans aren't your vibe, our GoGo Leggings are the perfect solution that cater to all shapes and sizes of booty. They're fully lined with DuPont™ Kevlar® Fiber and include removable CE Level 1 knee armour.  Yes, that's right (moto) leggings ARE pants! 



SHOP JEANS.


SHOP PANTS.






guide to buying motorcycle shoes

 

Think that even on a clear hot day you don’t need motorcycle specific shoes?Think again.
Even the smoothest of roads are porous enough to hide debris and oil leaks left by other vehicles. You will want shoes that have ankle coverage, a strong grip sole so you don’t slip and reinforced toes that will be able to take the daily grind on the gears.  Stay clear from thongs, runners, steel capped boots, and if you're going for laced boots always remember to tuck them in.


FIT:  They should fit nice and tight around the width of your feet but enough room around the toes so your feet don’t jam at the ends when you are in your riding position.  

TIP for Femmes:  If you are of shorter stature, wearing a heeled boot may help you feel more stable on your bike like the Black Arrow's Josie Boots.

SHOP SHOES.

 

 

BUYING ONLINE


Buying gear online has definitely become the norm these past few years, but it’s essential to understand that different brands AND products follow different sizing charts.  If you don’t have a measuring tape, use a piece of string to wrap around your body and mark it out with a ruler.  Take the time to measure yourself properly and if possible, ask somebody to help you so your calculations are correct.  
On our website we go the extra mile and include specific measurements on each product and explain adjustments for sizing up or down.

fining the size guide


Utilise the filter menu to refine  product features for your specific needs.

using our filter feature

 


In reality, if your gear is comfortable, fits well and suits your style the more likely you will wear it each time you get behind the throttle.  Not only will you be/feel safer but it will boost your confidence and encourage you to ride as much as possible, ensuring you get your money’s worth! 
As we always say... ALL THE GEAR, ALL THE TIME! 
Stay tuned for our next Learner focused blog where we will share some hot tips on How to Ride a Motorcycle.

2 comments


  • Mia Turnley

    Well written, informative article. It’s so important to look after ourselves and others out on the roads and I certainly learned a thing or two from this!


  • Simon Bennett

    Gear looks great


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