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a good set of leathers

Discussion in 'New Riders and Riding Tips' started by cb rookie, Apr 2, 2012.

  1. Hey all,
    So I was ripping around Mt Nebo on the weekend on my lil' CB, and had already put in a fairly solid effort the weekend before if I do say so myself. So looking to build on my speed and lean angle in the corners, I approached a tight left hander, and figured it'd be perfect. As I was going around, and leaning further down, I heard and felt a terrible grinding noise. In the first microcosm of a second I thought it was my exhaust, but then remembered it was on the other side (this realisation was also influenced by a dragging sensation on my left boot).
    I immediately eased off the throttle, reduced the lean angle, and completed the turn, realising I'd just been dragging my foot peg. It threw me off my game, so I called it a day before I got hurt, and rode home gingerly.

    I wondered this - Is it time:
    a) For a set of leathers to hang my knee off and reduce the likelihood of reliving the horrible feeling of an abnormally hard vibration coming through my foot in a turn
    b) To consider looking into a bike with more "corner-oriented ergonomics" (sportsbike - heard their pegs are higher + off restrictions in 4 weeks)

    I personally think that some self-portrayed mad cornering skillz do not equal mad sportsbike cornering/handling skillz, and figured it might be more logical (and an arseload cheaper) to buy a dang good set of leathers (and boots too, will probs hit the track soon).

    So, the question - What does one look for in a good set of leathers? I've already spoken to very learned friend who advised me that expensive isn't always bestest, as with anything.
    They also mentioned once that they prefer to have them slightly loose (breathing room) cos they like to move around on a bike.
    I've looked on the webzz, and found a set for about $400 (independent brand), and an aplinestars set for about $1100 +. they both seem to have the same armour, and leather thickness.

    PS - Doesn't need to be fire-retardant, I already have a sweet flamesuit:D:D:D
  2. Just to clarify, was it your toes that touched down, or the foot peg of the bike? If it was your toes, it was most likely poor foot positioning, you need to have the balls of your feet/toes on the pegs.

    If it was your foot peg, just a simple adjustment of your body position and cornering technique will allow greater cornering speeds without the need for knee down riding.

    Although I do still suggest that you get yourself a set of leathers, I am still chasing a nice fitting set myself. Look into custom made, which I would have done by now myself but I am currently working on getting into better shape, so want my leathers to fit the 'new' me.

    I would say when shopping for leathers, pay attention to the stitching, and the quality of the leather. Also make sure to sit on your bike while testing them, as they may be comfortable enough while in a shop, but they may restrict your movement on your bike.
  3. haha, I've snagged my foot before, but nah, it was the peg this time. I've done a bit of hanging off the bike without touching my knee down (only wear draggins), and it works well, but I imagine it would eventually leead to me getting my knee down. So I figure I might as well have something there if that happens.

    That's some good advice about the testing mate, thanks. I'll have a look.

    ozmcleath - thanks mate, good lil write up there. something to think about for sure.

    I'll probably have a look at the suits on the weekend.

    and another Q before I forget - is there any major advantages of a 1 piece over a 2 piece suit in terms of safety and reliability? Wouldn't want the top to seperate from the bottom in a spill!
  4. The 2 piece suits are still very reliable. The attachment between the 2 halves is just as secure as any other seam on the suit. As long as you are actually zipping it up and not just wearing it as 2 separate parts.
  5. I agree with some of the others that yes a good set of leathers is not a bad idea.

    But, you'd probably get more value from doing a few training courses to teach you how to ride better.

    There is also an argument that public roads aren't the place to be 'getting the knee down'.
  6. Like ZX said, the zipper attachment on a decent suit should be regarded as a safety seam.

    I don't think we've ever had a two piece in the shop where the connection zipper has split in a crash. That said, we have had connection zippers get damaged or in a slide (and so require replacement).

    A one piece (assuming correct fitment) is typically a little more comfortable than a two piece, due to not having a heavy duty zipper running around the waist.
  7. Maybe more comfortable on a sports bike. Not so sure about on a more upright touring style bike and definitely not that comfortable when you are off the bike sipping your latte.
  8. I'm only talking about leathers that are correctly fitted. If two suits share the same pattern then the only difference is that the two piece is split in half with a connection zipper. Zipper's don't have the elasticity of leathers, so can dig in a little when crouching or moving around on the bike.

    There is obviously a trade off in convenience, but the question I was answering only asked about safety and reliability :)
  9. Yes, I've heard that too, and wondered how much lower one could attempt to go with a knee down before hitting something like a stick or some sludge-like material (amongst other variables on the road) before coming unstuck.

    I believe that some of the track days you can purchase for SE QLD come with some form of riding instruction, albeit it for the track rather than road. What sort of road courses are offered around the place?

    Interesting information. I spose I'll have to just try them on and sit on my bike to see what I find comfy.
  10. or even just the cats eyes. Ask kd on here about it.
  11. Haha, yes, heard about that one. I think what I'm wanting/needing is track days, but unforunately you can't pop down to those when convenient every weekend :(
  12. If you are going to come off restrictions and want to upgrade to a sports bike, then you really should have some leathers to go with it.

    I've dragged a knee briefly in my draggin jeans. Don't recommend it.

    But lean angle comes from higher speeds. And you must be experienced with THAT, before you could expect to drag a peg or knee. It's a lot of speed and it's a long way over. It's not something you just go out and do.
    • Like Like x 1
  13. If you ride mountains often you need leathers. It's a separate issue altogether.

    On my gf's 250 last weekend on the mountains I was getting knee, toe slider and peg down at the same time and still wanting more clearance on the real crazy corners.

    3 options I can think of for your bike is;

    1: fit skinnier pegs with slash cut ends - you may gain 10-15mm
    2: fit aftermarket rearsets but not commonly available for non sport bikes.
    3: get some adaptors made up to raise your pegs up and back.

    Grinding peg isn't the end of the world providing that the factory swivel mechanism is working well. Also if your weighting the pegs (hence not allowing it to fold up) then your in trouble. The problem comes when the peg digs in and lifts the rear wheel off the ground. If the peg folds up this won't happen. I don't like scraping pegs myself but I've gotten used to it lately from riding my gf's bike and I don't mind it too much.
  14. Thanks for the great advice guys, I'll hit up some stores.
    Not keen on modifying the footpegs though, as the exhaust is already lower then the right peg.