Andrew P. from Illinois

April 12, 2011
Alpinestars SMX-2 Air Carbon Gloves. I purchased these gloves to fill a hole in my wardrobe for hot weather gloves. Although it isn't that hot yet this season the gloves appear that they will work superbly in the heat, while still providing a comforting amount of protection. As will any Alpinestars gear I've ever seen the build quality of these gloves in top-notch. The palm area & stitching seems as if it will provide sufficient protection and the carbon fiber knuckle protector is quite comfortable right out of the box, which is more than I can say for some other gloves I've worn. The gloves are a tight fit when pulling them over my thumb-palm joint, but once pulled on past this point the glove opens up a bit and is a comfortable fit. Sidi Coolmax Monza Socks. The flashy design of these socks caught my eye and I was curious to try a pair of riding specific socks. The socks are quite thinly constructed, so don't buy them expecting them to be big poofy socks that will take-up space in your too loose boots. Being thin and constructed of the Coolmax material the socks seem to disperse heat/sweat from your feet well walking around the house with no boots on. Although I've only worn them on casual street rides in these early season cool temperatures (not much physical exertion), so under these conditions they seem like any other pair of socks. However if you were to wear them on the racetrack in the dead-heat of summer you might notice a substantial difference over conventional socks. Icon Victory Riding Pants. I purchased these pants to use in conjunction with Icon's Field Leg Armor and I feel wearing the combination gives comparable protection to a pair of good textile pants (although not in the same league as leather pants) while being stylist enough to be able to walk around the town off the bike without people staring at you like you're from outer space. The pants are quite sturdily constructed and sized generously, especially the leg length (I'm going to have the legs hemmed up 3 inches to prevent them from dragging on the ground). The Kevlar panels sewn into the knee and hip areas certainly provide a measure of abrasion (not impact, use the Field Leg Armor for that) protection above and beyond everyday blue jeans while not being intrusive. Icon Field Leg Armor. I purchased the Leg Armor to wear under everyday pants when commuting to the office and to wear under the associated Icon Kevlar-reinforced denim pants for an additional measure of protection. The armor has a left & right side, which I feel results in a better fit being tailored for each leg. The shin armor extends quite low on the leg, which I think would interfere with tall roadrace type boots. The shin armor piece is hung from the knee cap armor piece with a couple straps of elastic which gives a lot of range of movement to the armor once strapped on. The straps that secure the armor and the padding inside are quite comfortable and don't irritate my skin on or off the bike. My only gripe with this armor is that the straps on the back of the calf are too short and I don't consider myself to have particularly big calves.
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