WHAT GEAR WOULD WORK THE BEST FOR ME?
A very common question our customers ask: “What would work better for me, the suits made with the Stretch material or the suits made with Mesh.”? This is not a simple question to answer. Many different factors apply when trying to make this decision. Height/Weight, man/women, where the suit will be worn, type of riding, street only or dual sport, used mainly for riding to work, type of bike that will be used, fully faired or no windshield/fairing, Many customers purchase the Mesh apparel for hot weather riding only. With Motoport’s Aero-Tex Liners or wearing Motoport’s Rain Gear over the Jackets/Pants, the Mesh apparel will also work very well in cold/wet weather. The Mesh has over double the tear strength as the Stretch. Both the Mesh/Stretch have almost identical abrasion ratings. Some riders make a choice for the Mesh simply because of this higher tear strength. It is not correct to pick the Mesh over the Stretch because of Tear Strength only. The Stretch is 5 times more tear strength than new competition grade leather. Look over the following to help you make a better decision.
A customer recently rode in from Las Vegas, Nevada. He was riding a bike that had a no windshield/fairing. When he placed the order on the phone he told us that he rode the vast majority of time on open roads, very unusual to be riding under 20mph. With good wind flow it is impossible to sweat in the Stretch suits. Even when proper base layers are worn, if not moving the body will sweat at over 90F for most riders. As soon as you start moving, getting wind flow the sweat feels like someone just turned on an air conditioner. Majority of his riding was in the Nevada area, dry, hot weather, up to 5 months of the year. He purchased the Marathon Stretch Jacket with the Ultra II Stretch Pant. This is a good choice because of the way the Stretch material breathes. If you put your mouth up against the outside layer of the Stretch and blow through the material, air flow is a little restrictive. (Stretch still breathes better than denim, from the outside in.) If you put your mouth up against the Stretch on the inside and try to blow through, the material breathes better than a cotton t-shirt. In temps from 90F and higher, in the dry heat, the skin will not dehydrate as compared to the Mesh material. Motoport strongly recommends wearing under the jacket, the undershirts made today, designed to soak up water, when riding at over 90F. When these shirts are wetted down and worn under the Stretch, it feels like your riding with an air conditioned jacket for up to 2.5 hours or longer. Now if this same customer road a fully faired bike with little wind flow, especially if in traffic, the Mesh Kevlar Jacket/Pant would be the best choice.
Another customer ordered the same Stretch suit that lived in the Seattle, Washington area. He rode a fully faired bike, the majority of time around Seattle going to work. He also did some longer rides only a few times a year again mostly around the northwest area of the USA. This suit again was a good choice for the following reasons:
- Unusual for temperatures to be over 90F.
Rain is common in the Seattle area. Stretch Kevlar suits can be worn in the rain on a bike with no windshield/fairing for up to 30 minutes or more at speed, before any moisture through the suit can be felt. Fully faired bikes can be ridden in the rain in some cases for
- hours without the rider getting wet. No need to stop to put on any rain gear before it starts raining, especially on the shorter rides to work.
- It is possible to ride at temperatures 15 to 20 degrees cooler, with the Stretch suits as compared to the Mesh, before any layering is necessary.
- This rider also mentioned that he planned a trip to another county that was hot/humid. Now if he was planning to ride more than 30% of the time in hot humid weather the Mesh suits would be a better choice. For one trip to this hot/humid country, the Stretch suit will be fine. Proper Base Layers are critical when wearing the Stretch in hot/humid climates.
Another customer that lived in the Chicago city area, that spent most of his riding time going to work in traffic, ordered the Mesh suit. Riding around the city of Chicago for up to 3 months of the year or more, can be hot/humid. Even when riding a bike with no windshield/fairing the best choice would be the Mesh suits. Now if this same rider only spent 30% of the time riding in the city, the rest of the time on the open road riding a naked bike the Stretch suit would be the best choice.
A women came in that lived in the San Diego area that was 5 feet tall, 100 pounds, riding a faired bike, the majority of time around the San Diego area. She purchased the Stretch jacket/pant. The majority of women prefer the Stretch suits. For the most part women can handle heat better than men. The Stretch material has a 4 way stretch. The Stretch is very soft/supple and feels like wearing pajamas. The Stretch material can also be made to fit the contours of the body better than the Mesh. The Mesh material when new can feel stiffer and intimidating to most women. The Mesh can take up to 8000 plus miles of riding to start to break in and soften. Stretch material is soft/supple right out of the box. No break in necessary.
Another girl from Miami that was 5 feet 9 inches tall, weighed 170 pounds purchased the suit made with Mesh. This was a good choice for her. If more than 50% of the riding will be in hot/humid weather, no matter what type bike the Mesh suits are the best choice. Even when not moving the rider can feel the wind blowing through the Mesh suits.
In most parts of North America if you plan to ride single track off road more than 40% of the time, the Mesh gear will be the best choice.
Some riders have no problem with riding in hot weather. For these riders the Stretch is a good choice. Some riders have problems riding in hot weather. For these riders the Mesh is a good choice.
Another customer wanted a jacket/pant to use for riding all over the world. His first trip was from Seattle in the winter, down coast into Mexico and then to down to the southern tip of South America. He was riding a partially faired bike. This would mean that dirt roads/mud would be common along with the hot/humid weather. Riding in cold/wet weather would also be common. In some cases he could be forced to ride at subzero temperatures for extended periods of time. The Mesh apparel would be the best choice. Heated Gear would also be important for comfort. Heated Gear would alleviate the need for layering bringing extra clothing or purchasing the 2 part Aero-Tex Liner with zip out insulation. The single Aero-Tex Liner would be all that would be necessary. Motoport’s Heated Gear is thin/lightweight and folds easy into compact areas.
For this type of riding we also strongly recommend wearing good base layers only, under the gear. https://www.motoport.com/product-category/base-layers/ These Base Layers are also very thin/lightweight, fold into compact areas, would also eliminate the need to bring extra clothing, be comfortable for riding long hours and very easy to wash by hand at night. The Mesh jacket/pant would be the best choice.
WHAT TYPE OF JACKET/PANT SHOULD I GET?
- Motoport makes waist cut jackets and what is considered ¾ length jackets. It can be misleading to say ¾ length because we can make any jacket any length preferred. Jacket length is a personal preference. Some guidelines can be used when determining the proper jacket length for your size, type of bike along with where and how you intend to ride. Read this link if you are trying to decide between a ¾ length or a waist cut jacket style: https://www.motoport.com/waist-cut-vs-%C2%BE-length-jackets/
Reading the above link along with the information provided above concerning the Mesh/Stretch suits should help you decide on the best choice.
Motoport makes two main styles of pants, Over Pants and Jean Style Pants. Reading the description on each pant shown on our web site will help you decide on the best choice. Here are some more points to understand when trying to decide on the best pant:
- Over Pants can be taken off, put on in seconds. No need to remove pants, boots or shoes. Many riders that commute daily to work, want to wear work pants underneath, choose the Over Pant. Thick Denim jean pants and also the Aero-Tex Liner can be worn under the Over Pant. The Jean Style Pant will allow you to wear our thin Aero-Tex Liner for cold/wet weather underneath. It is also possible to wear the Warm&Safe Heated Pant under the Aero-Tex Liner to allow comfort even in sub zero weather, but this is the maximum that can be worn underneath the Jean Style. It is not comfortable or even possible to try to wear another type regular pant under the Jean Style.
- Over Pants are very versatile fitting. It is possible to layer underneath in cold weather along with just wearing a thin base layer only. A rider can gain up to 20 pounds or have a 20 pound weight loss without any need to alter the Over Pant.
- Motoport’s Ultra II Mesh Over Pant is the most breathable, our best pant for hot/humid weather.
We always try to convince women that order the Mesh Over Pant to go with the front Mesh and complete back panel in Stretch. The all Mesh Over Pant must be sized to be a little baggy in the butt area when standing. If the Mesh Pant is snug when standing, the
- rider cannot sit down on the bike. Most women don’t like this baggy look, even when the pant can go on/off in seconds when off the bike.
- Tall riders or riders that ride sport bikes we also recommend the Mesh Front Stretch Back with the Ultra II.
- Riders that want Quad-Armor with the Ultra II, we also strongly recommend the Mesh Front Stretch Back.
Motor Police in Seattle first purchased the Over Pant. After one year of use they decided to change to the Jean Style Pant. Motoport’s Jean Style Pant could be worn in the office, riding or even when directing traffic on the street. Our Jean Style Pants are more comfortable than a denim pant. The Seattle Police found that they didn’t need to take the pant on/off during the day. Many of our long distance type riders also preferred the Jean Style Pant. These long distance riders simply wear our Jean Style Pant all the time. Even after arriving at a destination the pant stays on and used for regular non riding use. Many of our customers also wear the jean style pant to work and leave it on the entire day. Many riders for different reasons want to wear protective gear that looks like normal pants. This is another good reason to choose the jean style pant.
The majority of women prefer the all Stretch Jean Style Pant. This pant can feel and look better than most of stretch denim pants that women wear. For the extreme hot/humid weather Motoport recommends the complete front panel of the jean style pant be made in Mesh. The entire back panel made in Stretch. The vast majority of motor police all over the USA wear this Mesh front/Stretch back with the Jean Style Pant.
The rider above that was traveling from Seattle to the southern tip of South America picked the Air Mesh Jean Style Pant along with Quad-Armor in both the jacket and pant. He lived in this gear for almost 2 years straight. He loved his choice of gear and told us.
WHAT IS QUAD-ARMOR AND SHOULD I GET THIS?
Quad-Armor provides a little over double the impact absorption as compared to the Tri-Armor. Impact protection is the number 1 protective issue in motorcycle apparel. The most serious injury to the body in a tumble is impact. To get over double the impact protection by just adding a thin layer of PORON® XRDTM extreme impact Protection Material is a great investment. This investment is far more than paid for in just one crash. Tri-Armor can take up to one hour the first time worn to break in and mold to the shape of the rider. The Quad-Armor can take up to 2 hours for the initial break in. There is no difference in breathability. The Quad-Amor weighs a slight amount more than the Tri and this is can be noticed only when putting on/off the gear. When riding no difference in comfort is felt.
Quad-Armor is not recommended for the small size jackets/pants. The Quad-Armor can also be intimidating for some women that want a form fitting suit with no bulk.
Quad-Armor is also not recommended for riders that want to walk for any distances in or wear any of the jean style pants all day long. It is too difficult to remove the armor for walking around on a daily basis.
See Quad-Armor here: https://www.motoport.com/quad-armor/
ZIPPING THE JACKET TO THE PANT
Motoport’s waist cut jackets should always be zipped to the pant when riding. The waist cut jackets can ride up the torso in a tumble or when riding the bike, when not zipped to the pant.. The ¾ length jacket cannot ride up the torso as long as the front length of the jacket extends a minimum of 2.5” below the waist belt line. One disadvantage of the jean style pant is a shorter zipper length must be used. If you want to zip the jacket to the jean style pant a maximum length zipper of 13” can be used. If we put a longer, fuller circumference zipper to connect to the jacket it is very difficult to bend when riding/getting on/off the bike. This problem is caused from the pant rise. Front rise is from the seam in the front section of the crotch where all the panels come together up to the waist. Back rise is from the same bump where all the panels come together in the crotch up the back side to the top of the waist. When ordering any of the jean style pants we recommend to always order a higher rise than most regular cut jeans. The longer rise will be far more comfortable. It will not be necessary to pull up on the pant constantly all day long when riding/getting on/off the bike. Full length zippers will offer more protection in a tumble and also be easier to connect and zip closed.
The Ultra II Over Pants will accept a full circumference zipper to connect to the jacket.
In the jean pants we also have styles that will accept a full circumference zipper:
Note: Both the GP-2 Stretch and GP-2 Mesh Pant is designed to be in a sport bike/road racing position. If you plan or riding sitting up in a more straight position choose the other two styles of pants. It is also difficult to wear any layers under these pants. The GP-2 Pants also have no belt and cannot be worn alone without zipping the full circumference zipper to the jacket. The other two pants have belts and can be worn not zipped to the pant or in an upright/sport bike position. The other two pants also will accept the Aero-Tex Liner, Heated Pant Liner along with the newer thin long underwear.
It is common that our customers that want to use our gear for track days, need to have a zipper connect the pant. This is a requirement at many tracks all over the country. We can always add a zipper to any jacket/pant to allow the gear to be used. In the longer ¾ length jackets the Marathon is a better choice if the zipper needs to connect to the pant. The Marathon can use a full circumference zipper. If the Ultra II Jacket must zip to the pant only a 13” maximum length zipper should be used.
When the jacket is zipped to the pant Suspenders are not necessary. When the jacket does not zip to the pant we strongly recommend the option of adding Suspenders. Many of our customers think that Suspenders are only for riders that have a big belly. This is far from the truth. This is one of our options that riders comment after using that it is the best option ever purchased. Here are the main reasons:
- For long distance riding Suspenders are very important for a comfortable ride. No need to be pulling up the pant and waist of pant can be left loose to be more comfortable.
- Customers that ride sport bikes, especially the taller riders.
- Suspenders are important for riders that have a big belly. If both a and b above apply to you it doesn’t matter if you don’t have a belly, Suspenders are still important.
Motoport makes in custom lengths Buckle Suspenders and Velcro Suspenders. We recommend the Velcro Suspenders for the main reason of comfort. Motoport uses Heavy Duty plastic buckles, two in the front above the waist and two in the back above the waist. These buckle Suspenders can be annoying for some riders.
HOW DOES THE CORDURA GEAR COMPARE TO THE GEAR MADE WITH STRETCH OR MESH DUPONT™KEVLAR BLENDED MATERIALS?
In most cases riders go with the Cordura apparel because of cost. Cordura jackets/pants will cost less than the gear made using Dupont™ Kevlar blended material. The benefits of the blended gear are shown all throughout the web site. On this link you can see the tear/abrasion strengths of Motoport’s and most of the materials used today for other motorcycle apparel: https://www.motoport.com/the-save-your-hide-guide/
Many comparisons of Motoport’s Stretch and Mesh apparel can be found all over the internet. It is difficult to find comparisons with other gear compared to our Cordura. The best Cordura gear with other brands made today is made with a plastic coated 500 Denier Cordura that tears at less than 22 pounds. Motoport only uses non plastic coated 1000 Denier Cordura that tears at 110 pounds. See Polyurethane in Motoport’s Dictionary: https://www.motoport.com/motoport-dictionary/
We have seen over the years many times when these 500 Denier Cordura jackets/pants completely fail in a 20 mph tumble. Motoport’s 1000 Denier Cordura is 5 times stronger than any of the other top brands made with 500 Denier. Here are even more facts that make Motoport’s 1000 Denier Cordura jackets/pants far better than any other synthetic gear made from other companies:
- Better armor covering more of the body than any other gear. https://www.motoport.com/product-category/armor-products/
- Safety Lock Stitching of all construction seams.
- No double layers of materials on the outside of the gear that limit breathability and cause problems in a tumble. Larger solid panels of materials, eliminating seams.
- Better in hot/cold/wet weather.
- Better Warranty/Guarantee.
- Made here in house in the USA.
- Can be repaired/altered.
- Each jacket and pant is made custom for any sized rider for a perfect fit.
MESH OR STRETCH SHIRT
Motoport’s Mesh or Stretch Shirt is made from the same Dupont™ Kevlar blended materials. These Shirts provide the same protection as any of our other jackets. The same Tri-Armor is standard. Quad-Armor can be ordered as an option. The Shirts also have the same tear/abrasion/seam strength. The major difference is these shirts are made to wear alone. There are no additional zippers or flaps that allow wearing our Aero-Tex Liners underneath or to do any extensive layering. This makes these shirts the best apparel for hot weather. Similar to the Jean Style Pant, many riders wear our Mesh or Stretch Shirts all day long, even when off the bike not riding. Many riders want something thin and lightweight and also have the appearance of a shirt, not a motorcycle jacket. Use the description of the Mesh/Stretch shown in this link to help decide what type of shirt to get.
ONE PIECE SUIT OR A JACKET AND PANT?
First we are more than happy to make a one piece suit for you. We make the one piece from 1000 Denier non plastic coated Cordura that is 5 times stronger than all the other top rated suits. All of the other top rated synthetic one piece motorcycle suits are made from a plastic coated 500 Denier Cordura that tears at less than 22 pounds. If the one piece is made from Polyester, expect even worse performance than the 500 Denier Cordura. We also make this suit with Stretch and Mesh materials made from Dupont Kevlar blended fibers. The Stretch has more than 5 times the tear strength of the world’s best leather. The Mesh has more than 10 times the tear strength of the world’s best leather.
Following are some of the issues that should be taken into consideration:
- One piece suits are the least versatile fitting gear that Motoport manufactures. One Piece Suits should be custom made. If you can find a production one piece or a used one piece that fits properly, it is your lucky day. One of the important measurements we need when making a one piece is from the base of the neck in front down around the crotch to the base of the neck in back. (Torso Length) If the suit is just two inches short it is difficult to move or bend. If the suit torso length is more than two inches too long it can be baggy fitting. Here are some more pros/cons of the one piece vs the two piece:
- Some riders stop for an all you can eat meal. After this meal the stomach can go out and now the one piece suit can be very snug fitting.
- If you will gain or have a weight loss of more than 15 pounds during the year, a one piece suit will not be a good choice. Two piece suits are far more versatile fitting. With Motoport’s Ultra II over pant in combination with the Marathon or Ultra II Jackets, it is possible to have up to a 25 pound weight gain/loss with no need to alter.
- If laying in cold weather is important, the one piece must be over sized to fit properly and can also fit large when not layering in hot weather.
- No matter the height if the rider is overweight a one piece suit is not a good choice.
- When arriving at a destination a one piece must be taken off. One piece suits are too bulky/restrictive to wear as normal clothing. Motoport’s one piece suit will not fit in the vast majority of motorcycle luggage. When used for traveling with no secure place to hang the suit, it should be locked to the outside of the motorcycle. Motoport’s jackets/pants will fit in most luggage. It is also necessary in some cases to walk around wearing the jacket in colder weather and this can be done in a two piece. The Ultra II over pant can also be used for walking. Motoport’s Jean Style Pants can be worn all day long even when off the bike. The Jean Style Pant is more comfortable than a denim pant.
- Some riders think that a one piece will be more protective in a tumble. This is not true if the jacket/pant combo is sized correctly. Waist cut length jackets should always be zipped to the pant, to keep the jacket from riding up. ¾ length style jackets that extend a minimum of 2.5” below the waist belt line do not need to zip to the pant. It is possible to gain more of a versatile fit with a waist cut jacket attached to the pant with a full circumference zipper. This two piece suit would function very similar to a one piece. Some riders never unzip the jacket from the pant, taking the suit on/off similar to a one piece.
- If you want to use a one piece for serious off road it is not a good choice. One piece suits are too restrictive for serious off road.
- Need a large commercial machine to wash a one piece. Most standard machines will fit a jacket or a pant without any problems.
Here are some good reasons to purchase a one piece suit:
1. Riding to work is the majority of use where it is important to wear work clothing underneath. At work it is easy and secure to store the suit.
- Some riders in some cases will not put on a protective pant, especially for short rides. With a one piece the lower body is always protected. Note: Motoport makes an Ultra II over pant that will also go on off in seconds. The time to put on the jacket/over pant is just a matter of seconds in difference to the one piece.
- Rider doesn’t have any issues with weight gain/loss and prefers the quick on/off of a one piece. With a full one piece rain suit or one piece Aero-Tex Liner, worn inside, the suit can be used in cold/wet weather. With heated gear there would be no reason to layer and this one piece can be used to ride all over the world in comfort.
- Rider prefers the look of a one piece.
Many of Motoport’s current customers were previous one piece suit owners. The majority of these customers usually choose to go with a two piece and are much happier. Many links can be found both on our site and others that show riders changing from a one piece to a two piece. Here is a long read that started by Gringo, an engineer that had an Aero-Stitch for 10 years:
Thousands of links where riders talk about Motoport can be found all over the internet. On our web site this link: “What Others Say About Motoport” can be found. Reading these links can also help answer questions about Motoport and our gear:
If you still have questions please feel free to give us a call or make an appointment to come into our store in San Marcos, California.