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Old 05-13-2011, 04:41 AM   #1
thewingo
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Leather v. Textile Jacket - Which & Why?

I'm trying to pick out a jacket and don't know if I want to go textile or (vented) leather. So, I thought I would grab a general consensus! (yes I searched and did not find what I was looking for, found a similar thread, but different)

Which do you wear, leather or textile? Why did you choose one over the other? And what are your experiences in the summer months, especially July/August?

I'm leaning towards a perfed leather jacket for the abrasion resistance and durability aspect, just concerned at how well they breathe and how hot traffic lights get.
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Old 05-13-2011, 04:49 AM   #2
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There have been some good advances made in textile in recent years but leather will always provide superior abrasion protection over textile.
Just as important as the material used is the construction. Leather does no good if the seams fail. Q
Look for double or triple stitching and taped seams
Some other considerations are armor and fit. A jacket that does not fit properly can allow the armor to move or ride up exposing your skin.

An all leather jacket takes a bit of discipline to wear during the hottest months of the summer.
While I typically wear leather personally, from June through September I'll wear a leather and mesh hybrid.

A good hybrid leather and mesh jacket to consider is the Joe Rocket Reactor.

We keep a good selection of jackets in stock and if we don't have it we can get it in a couple of days. We can also help with sizing and we guarantee fit.
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Last edited by Patrick; 05-13-2011 at 04:54 AM.
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Old 05-13-2011, 04:59 AM   #3
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<----- Cortech leather/textile/mesh

... if all you do is backroads and keep the air moving perf leather is fine, but once you stop or slow down be prepared to cook.
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Old 05-13-2011, 06:32 AM   #4
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I'm crazy. I wear a non perforated black leather jacket year round. I used to have a mesh jacket, but after wearing leather I doubt I'll go back. When you're stopped at a light or in stopped traffic, it doesn't matter what you're wearing, it's going to be hot. I think a perforated leather jacket with a good liner would be best. It'll still keep you about as cool as you'll get while protecting you.
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Old 05-13-2011, 07:11 AM   #5
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Around town I'll wear a textile but any riding I do on the freeway for an extended time or backroads I prefer leather. The protection as well as the comfort w no air buffering etc is worth the ride. It may be a little hot at a stop but last few years very well designed to breath while riding.
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Old 05-13-2011, 09:32 AM   #6
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my first and only jacket is a dainese airmesh 2.0. all leather jackets were at least twice as much, and i thought the mesh would be cooler during summer. i also bought a dainese back protector that slips into the jacket. hopefully the jacket doesn't shred apart and rip all the armor off if i fall and slide.
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Old 05-13-2011, 09:36 AM   #7
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Leather most of the year (no substitute for dead cow). During the hottest months I wear mesh unless I'm riding with friends (then it's always leather).

Keep in mind I don't commute in rush hour traffic.
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Old 05-13-2011, 09:37 AM   #8
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Joe Rocket Radar Leather with some mesh (armpits, etc). Leather in the summer is my weight loss program, so doesn't bother me!
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Old 05-13-2011, 09:37 AM   #9
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Alpine star smx air flow. Good leather hybrid jacket for all months riding in Texas.
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Old 05-13-2011, 01:15 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nowell View Post
Joe Rocket Radar Leather with some mesh (armpits, etc). Leather in the summer is my weight loss program, so doesn't bother me!
I had thought about the Radar like you and Patrick mention after I saw a friends. Looked good, had leather in important places, and looked like it would be fairly cool. Then I saw what happened after he had a minor get off. A seam burst on one of the arms and ripped open, leaving some roadrash. I'll pass.
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Old 05-13-2011, 01:23 PM   #11
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I'm a big fan of leather depstie how hot it can get. you cant beat that "second set of skin"

however i have seen Ochiwon's Vanson mesh and it is great! very tough and thick mesh with great armor.

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Old 05-13-2011, 01:28 PM   #12
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I wear Mesh exclusively now.

I would wear leather when it was cool enough (morning/night riding, cooler months, etc), or when planning spirited riding. Alas, I grew out of it, so I sold it to a buddy.

I AM looking to pick up something leather this fall, though, so I'll keep my eyes on this thread!
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Old 05-13-2011, 01:35 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nowell View Post
Joe Rocket Radar Leather with some mesh (armpits, etc). Leather in the summer is my weight loss program, so doesn't bother me!
HAHAHAHAHA

I'm actually surprised to see so many leather responses. I figured the same as some of you mentioned about doesn't matter what you're wearing, it will still be hot. And, sweating a little and drinking a bottle of water or two is a small price to pay to keep my skin in tact. I will take a look at what you guys have but I saw this jacket and thought it would look good off the bike as well

http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com...er-Jacket.aspx
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Old 05-13-2011, 02:19 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thewingo View Post
HAHAHAHAHA

I'm actually surprised to see so many leather responses. I figured the same as some of you mentioned about doesn't matter what you're wearing, it will still be hot. And, sweating a little and drinking a bottle of water or two is a small price to pay to keep my skin in tact. I will take a look at what you guys have but I saw this jacket and thought it would look good off the bike as well

http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com...er-Jacket.aspx
A good textile is going to be about as effective as leather at normal street speeds.

Note - I said "about as effective" not "as effective" and "normal street speeds" means something approximating the speed limit.

I recognize some of you don't commute or ride daily in all kinds of weather and conditions, but for those of us who do, the risks of dehydration are a greater concern than the additional abrasion resistance. Most street accidents, a long distance slide down pavement is the least of your worries.

In my case - leather from October to March. Textile and/or mesh from late March to October. Obviously this is temperature dependent so if its still 80 degrees in December, I'm probably not wearing leather.
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Old 05-13-2011, 02:25 PM   #15
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anyone that thinks mesh is acceptable at highway or above speeds needs to go visit Karthick and ask him how the skin graft surgeries feel. Granted his are not from road rash but the end result is the same. Better to be hot for a few minutes than endure excruciating pain for days/weeks/months. Plus when you stop a t a light and start sweating it feels good when you start moving again.
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Old 05-13-2011, 02:34 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by trooper View Post
anyone that thinks mesh is acceptable at highway or above speeds needs to go visit Karthick and ask him how the skin graft surgeries feel. Granted his are not from road rash but the end result is the same. Better to be hot for a few minutes than endure excruciating pain for days/weeks/months. Plus when you stop a t a light and start sweating it feels good when you start moving again.
Funny, but when I hear that, I am forced to wonder if the gear was the right size.

A lot of us forget that it needs to be near skin tight with the armor in the right locations to work worth a . Same goes for leather. If the gear can move, it will.

On the street, abrasion resistance isnt near as important as impact resistance. You're not going to see a whole lot of 100'+ slides down 610. You're very likely going to run into something which stops the slide long before you reach the limits of the gear.

Granted, YMMV, and we all know every crash is different, but I wouldn't write off an entire subset of protective gear based on a single anecdotal example.
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Old 05-13-2011, 02:37 PM   #17
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Here's some info I posted in a discussion on the SV forums. And let me say that I ride to work year round. Ice and lightning are the only things that get me off the road:

I wear a perforated leather jacket down here in Houston summer, in traffic. Before leather I had the Cortex GX Air 2 jacket. I liked the leather in the impact areas on that jacket. However, riding in the HOV lane in the middle of 6-8 lanes of traffic I feel fine in the full leather. In the mesh, I get the full blast of 95-105 degree air off the pavement and cars and it dehydrates me pretty quickly. With the leather, it feels like it controls that hot air flow better and keeps the extreme heat off my skin.

At first I thought for sure the mesh would be better, then I read about people riding in the desert who cover up more and block the air flow. Once the ambient temps get above your body temperature, the airflow is actually heating you up instead of cooling you off. And in extreme temps like over 100, you need to cover your neck because the heat on the neck warms the blood flowing through the cardioid artery and causes your brain to overheat faster.

This is also when a wet or coolshirt comes in handy. It'll stay wet longer in leather and keep you cool longer whereas it drys out in just a couple of minutes in mesh.
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Old 05-13-2011, 03:08 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Princess View Post
I had thought about the Radar like you and Patrick mention after I saw a friends. Looked good, had leather in important places, and looked like it would be fairly cool. Then I saw what happened after he had a minor get off. A seam burst on one of the arms and ripped open, leaving some roadrash. I'll pass.
Notice I didn't say the Radar, only the Reactor.
In all honesty I haven't been overly impressed with the Radar. While I like a lot of the products Joe Rocket has to offer, if they make a product that I don't think will work well I won't recommend it. To that point, I've seen more than a few Reactors hold up well in crashes, including a low speed get off I had a while back.

My primary jacket is the Sonic 2.0 perfed leather, but in July-August it's too damned hot to wear so I'll put on the Reactor.
As I said in my original post; it takes a lot of discipline to wear a leather in the summer. The best protection in the world won't do you any good if you leave it in hanging in the closet because it's too hot to wear.
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Old 05-13-2011, 03:28 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick View Post
The best protection in the world won't do you any good if you leave it in hanging in the closet because it's too hot to wear.


That's why I wear mesh - well more accurately, I wear a Joe Rocket Alter Ego - I'd call it a mesh-textile hybrid. Heavy textile on the shoulders and arms (if i leave the sleeves on), mesh on the chest and back.

Sure, perforated leather is theoretically better, but I'd probably have to worry about heat stroke causing the accident.
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Old 05-13-2011, 08:28 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Patrick View Post
Notice I didn't say the Radar, only the Reactor.
In all honesty I haven't been overly impressed with the Radar. While I like a lot of the products Joe Rocket has to offer, if they make a product that I don't think will work well I won't recommend it. To that point, I've seen more than a few Reactors hold up well in crashes, including a low speed get off I had a while back.

My primary jacket is the Sonic 2.0 perfed leather, but in July-August it's too damned hot to wear so I'll put on the Reactor.
As I said in my original post; it takes a lot of discipline to wear a leather in the summer. The best protection in the world won't do you any good if you leave it in hanging in the closet because it's too hot to wear.
Tell me about it. My year round gear is non perforated A* boots and jacket, knee protection, gauntlet gloves. Along with the helmet obviously. I HATE riding in summer because of that. I should probably get a perf'ed jacket. I have the money to buy one whenever, I've just been lazy.
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