Anyone been down in waxed cotton?

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by letterofmarque, Apr 16, 2013.

  1. letterofmarque

    letterofmarque Adventurer

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    Waxed cotton doesn't look like it will provide much protection, but out of sheer curiosity, can anyone who has been down in a waxed cotton jacket tell me how it fared and in what conditions?

    Simply curious as these appear to be fashion instead of safety oriented (but they do look quite nice).
    #1
  2. bomber60015

    bomber60015 Anatomically Correct

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    Only in sand and very loose soil (Barbour International), and at a low rate of knots at that . . . . . . no damage to me or the jacket, but I would rate it at slightly below new jeans in the abrasion resistance category.
    #2
  3. disston

    disston ShadeTreeExpert

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    I think the deal with waxed cotton has always been rain resistance not abrasion. Was a time that all the thinking about abrasion wasn't really part of the equation. But we did like to stay dry. The waxed cotton breathed a little better than the plastics of the day. Gee, this was all before GoreTex even. So waxed cotton seems to have survived a little. Not all of us do the ATGATT thing you know? Some of us wear some of the gear some of the time. :lol3
    #3
  4. Old Fart At Play

    Old Fart At Play Mad about thumpers

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    Nov 2010 I killed a 200 lb deer with my DR650 at about 45 mph while wearing an Aerostich Falstaff. Sailed over the deer, landed more-or-less face first on the pavement, on my helmet amd left shoulder. Tumbled about 3 times, then the tumbling bike landed on my left leg. After which we slid together before coming to a stop in the middle of the highway. Suffered a fracture to the tibial plateau, but upper body injuries were limited to a stiff shoulder, sore ribs and a mild concussion. The jacket had small holes on the left sleeve and shoulder, main zipper flap, and one pocket. Repaired by Aerostich for just under half the cost of a new jacket. I was particularly impressed with the performance of the TF3 pads, but even the waxed cotton performed better than I expected. My non-Aerostich insulated cordura pants were totalled.

    The DR650 lives on, now at 88,500 km.

    I do not recommend this method of abrasion testing.
    #4
  5. HeatXfer

    HeatXfer Bad knees

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    "Waxed Cotton" sounds like a euphemism for personal grooming :nod
    #5
  6. lhendrik

    lhendrik Truffle Rustler

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    Anyone been down in waxed cotton?

    And lived to tell about it?
    #6
  7. levain

    levain STILL Jim Williams

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    Call me LOCO, but it looks like the Old Fart above did:scratch:dunno:dunno:dunno


























    :scratch
    #7
  8. squish

    squish Out of the office.

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    I have not. A buddy I rode with In Seattle did.
    Iirc it was a grab to much front brake car turning left in front him at ~35 mph.
    He went down on his belly and slid for a ways. Chewed up the buttons and there were small holes and you could see the imprint of his house keys in his pocket.

    The jacket was a Belstaf with no padding. I remember being shocked at how well it survived.
    He continued to ride with that jacket until the small holes started to get bigger and the waterproof jacket no longer was.
    #8
  9. Plaka

    Plaka Brevis illi vita est

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    Actually they're waterproof oriented and they are very good. I was down once in my Belstaff at low speed. Wore through some already wearing pocket corners and mashed up the snaps. Have a friend that lives in one and he went down numerous times at various speeds but his jacket looks ok. The last crash, in the snow, hurt him very badly (got clobbered by a jack knifing semi) but he still wears the jacket.

    I wouldn't put it up against leathers but it's not as fragile as one would think. Put some good armor under it and I'd say it's a contender if you don't make a habit of riding at warp 9.
    #9
  10. HaChayalBoded

    HaChayalBoded Brooklyn Bored

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    Lots of guys in my area wear Belstaff, old classic Belstaff. Lots of them are scuffed and have been around the block, I always ask about the accident and mention how surprised I am about the waxed cotton holding up.

    On the track of course they all wear leather.
    #10
  11. SPEIRMOOR

    SPEIRMOOR Been here awhile

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    The Barbour Black shadow is based on their international jacket and it comes with Back,shoulder and elbow armor. Its new on the market so might put you more at ease if youre considering a wax jacket.
    Linky
    #11
  12. bomber60015

    bomber60015 Anatomically Correct

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    I like it, but it DOES seem like a highly refined, electronically controlled buggy whip.

    But I like it!
    #12
  13. JTT

    JTT Long timer

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    MANY years back I unceremoniously dismounted the rear fender of my XR350 during a very nice top of 3rd gear wheelie. Likely 45-50mph but on a gravel/dirt road. My old Belstaff survived without a scratch, as did my arms and torso...thumb didn't fend quite as well, but I can't blame the jacket for that. I'm not saying it's Superfabric or Kevlar quality by any means, but I think good heavy waxed cotton is probably as good as much of the cheap "cordura" stuff out there.

    Not to take this too far off topic, but I sometimes wonder if a portion of a materials abrasion resistance (in actual crash situations) is down to it's slipperiness...or low friction coefficient? Greased pig vs. clean dry one :lol3
    #13
  14. Warin

    Warin Retired

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    Ridden for quite a few years in various waxed cotton jackets all Belstaffs IIRC. They all had good abrasion resistance, one even had a barbed wire test - no holes in me but one in a jacket pocket. The have surprisingly much better abrasion resistance than cotton jeans/jackets. The 'problem' with them is they collect the dust as an outer layer when you ride on dirt roads ... good for getting through a Que without being squashed - people stay well clear of the 'dirty motorcyclist' :lol3.
    #14
  15. sjc56

    sjc56 Long timer

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    I once crashed in the rain with a dry rider rain suit ended up with one little hole in, it I slid pretty good so I guess a low drag coefficient works in your favor.
    #15