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Old 04-14-2014, 10:24 PM   #1
monkeyodeath OP
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New DS rider looking for gear advice

Sorry if this is a boring question, but I've done a lot of board searching and could really use some advice.

I'm fixing up an old KLR650 and am looking to use it for commuting 10 or so miles to work in Los Angeles, as well as some off-roading.

At this point, I'm pretty confused as to what the best route is to go regarding armor, whether it's necessary or not for the street. All my previous riding experience is on a dirt bike in Southeast Asia, where I wore boots, knee/shin guards, a helmet, and just a normal long-sleeve shirt and pants. It was admittedly pretty nice in the heat.

I have a Cordura jacket and pants with some armor in them, a decent pair of lower-cut motorcycle boots, and some armored gloves.

I anticipate that a good deal of my riding is going to be in hot temperatures. I get hot pretty easily, and I don't want to wear stuff that's going to suffocate me. I also don't really want an overly ornate getup that takes a ton of time to get on and off, as I'll be riding my bike to places like work and the gym, where I'm going to have to shuck it all anyway.

I'm definitely planning on taking it easy -- have no plans for splitting lanes, riding at high speeds on the freeway, or taking really gnarly single-track any time soon.

That being the case, does wearing full armor make sense? Could I commute to work in just the armor and a jersey or something over the top? Does it make more sense to pick up a few pieces of armor to start for off-roading, then go from there? Or is the jacket with the armor good enough to get started?

Love to hear your thoughts, thanks!
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:04 AM   #2
tjzondrz
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I am very surprised that you have not got a response as of yet,but here goes.
I ride my DRZ as a commuter and off road also.I wear all my gear,all the time.(ATGATT)
Klim armour jacket or my pressure suit and MX jersey.Depending on the Temp.
Klim pants with armour.
and a GOOD pair of boots and gloves.
Also,The best head bucket you can afford.

That is all.
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Old 04-17-2014, 10:15 AM   #3
Scott_PDX
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By Armor, are you talking offroad pressure suit type thing?

You say you have a condura pants/jacket with Armor already you should wear that stuff on the street...period. When it starts to warm up, consider looking at mesh gear to supplement the above. Some of the mesh stuff out there have rain/cold liners as well to help.

Same set-up works for dual sporting, though off-road boots would be recommended.

If serious off-roading, single tracking, hill climbing etc, you'll melt in the above, that is were offroad armor over/under jersey's is used. It's much cooler and great for the type of get'offs you have off road. But not really designed for sliding down the highway.
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:42 PM   #4
SandHogSC
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Off Road Boots

If you do any off road riding invest in some off road boots. After a good helmet boots should be a close second. Foot and ankle injuries are common and I am speaking from experience. For entry level I like the Gaerne GX1
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Old 04-17-2014, 01:25 PM   #5
monkeyodeath OP
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Scott_PDX View Post
By Armor, are you talking offroad pressure suit type thing?

You say you have a condura pants/jacket with Armor already you should wear that stuff on the street...period. When it starts to warm up, consider looking at mesh gear to supplement the above. Some of the mesh stuff out there have rain/cold liners as well to help.

Same set-up works for dual sporting, though off-road boots would be recommended.

If serious off-roading, single tracking, hill climbing etc, you'll melt in the above, that is were offroad armor over/under jersey's is used. It's much cooler and great for the type of get'offs you have off road. But not really designed for sliding down the highway.
Yeah, I've got some decent Condura armored pants and jacket that'll be my default street gear. I was looking into the mesh but was told it would just shred and not be protective while sliding across pavement.

Definitely looking into off-road boots. Probably going to start slow, so maybe I'll wait on something like a Juggernaut suit/jersey until I start to do more gnarly stuff.

The offroad armor and jersey solution appeals to me from a "keeping cool on the street" perspective, but I guess it's not a great idea for street riding.
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Old 04-18-2014, 05:27 AM   #6
atgatt
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All good replies... just wanted to throw this in. This study has been talked about plenty in other threads but here it is again. I include it here since the OP was asking if armor was really needed for street riding. My opinion is... you don't need it (your body, your decision)... but you should wear it (at least that's my suggestion).

Motorcyclists were significantly less likely to be admitted to hospital if they crashed wearing motorcycle jackets (RR=0.79, 95% CI: 0.69-0.91), pants (RR=0.49, 95% CI: 0.25-0.94), or gloves (RR=0.41, 95% CI: 0.26-0.66). When garments included fitted body armour there was a significantly reduced risk of injury to the upper body (RR=0.77, 95% CI: 0.66-0.89), hands and wrists (RR=0.55, 95% CI: 0.38-0.81), legs (RR = 0.60, 95% CI: 0.40-0.90), feet and ankles (RR=0.54, 95% CI: 0.35-0.83).

http://www.georgeinstitute.org/sites...gear-study.pdf
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Old 04-18-2014, 07:46 AM   #7
Swashbuckler
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I use a Joe Rocket setup. I would have never considered them, but I found them at a local shop and the jacket blew me away.

The Alter Ego Jacket Consists of:
A waterproof removable shell that folds into it's own pocket
A mesh jacket that contains all the pads (loose and flows tons of air)
And an inner fleece liner

I've used this jacket for everything. I've taken it to mx tracks, moab, and all over colorado through every situation possible and it's been perfect.

I ended up buying the Alter ego matching pants as well, but they haven't been anything spectacular. They only have one little section that runs from the thighs, around the waist, across the butt, and back around that can be taken off to reveal mesh. It's good because it flows air, but you have to stand up to take full advantage of it and it doesn't really do much for anything below the thighs. But they do offer all the protection I need and have held up extremely well.
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