Frequently Asked Questions
Q What grades of leather are best for jackets?
A. According to tests conducted by SATRA in UK, bovine leather will tend to last longer than sheep or goat leather of the same thickness. Bovine leather that is around 1.2 - 1.4 mm can give between 6 and 12 seconds of abrasion resistance which is sufficient. However it all depends on how the leather has been treated. Two samples of equal thickness bovine suede lasted 0.8 and 8.0 seconds respectively. The only way to be sure is to test the actual sample, that is why the testing systems are so useful for riders.
Q. I buy a lot of my gear over the web from the US. You only talk about Europe. Are there standards for protective clothing in the USA?
A. No - there are currently no US standards for motorcycle protective gear apart from helmets. There is no harm in asking your US suppliers how their products compare against the European standards. Market pressure may encourage them to respond.
Q. My jacket has a CE label with the number EN 1621, doesn't that mean it complies with the European Standard?
A. No this can be misleading. The CE label number EN 1621 only refers to the inserted impact protectors, not the whole jacket. If the whole jacket complied it would also have a label with number EN 13595.
Q. My motorcycle accessories shop sells lots of European products, but not many of them have CE labels. Why is this?
A. The European market is only just adjusting to the release of the standards, so we can expect a bit of a time lag here. Ask your retailer to bring in CE marked products.
Q. How can I find out what gear does pass these tests?
A. The best way to check out gear from Europe is to read the reviews in the English motorcycle magazines (eg Ride or MCN are both available in Australia) . They have regular product evaluations including the results for gear tested against the European Standards. They include products that are not yet CE marked, so ask your retailer to bring in the products that pass the tests.
Q In the glove section you speak of gloves that have webbing between the fingers, why do you think this is good design.
A. The fingers can take the full weight of your falling twisting body when you hit the road. The little finger is most at risk because it is on the outside. Webbing tends to hold it in to curve against your palm rather than being twisted backwards.