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How much "suiting up" for the ride do you do?

  • All The Gear All The Time

    Votes: 27 35.1%
  • Most of the gear, most of the time

    Votes: 27 35.1%
  • Some of the gear, some of the time

    Votes: 7 9.1%
  • Minimal gear whenever possible

    Votes: 7 9.1%
  • No gear as much as possible

    Votes: 4 5.2%
  • Depends on how far I'm riding

    Votes: 5 6.5%
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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
ATGATT=All The Gear All The Time, in case anyone is unfamiliar with the "short hand".

Everybody who rides knows the risks, (just like people who smoke know the risks). I'm not looking for lectures or flames, just interested in how many people really suit up and how, so I posting this poll. Just out of curiosity. And just like making the choice regarding the gear, you can choose to comment or not on the issue after the vote. Your votes will not be public either, if that matters to you.

The choice I have regarding "minimal gear" is basically for people who live in helmet law states. Minimal gear being what you must wear, or what you feel you should wear. Here in MI, helmets are required, so at the very least we're wearing something, though some riders choose to wear gloves too.

Anyway, it's just a very non-scientific poll, because I've been curious for a while how many actually do what, and not just here either, but at other groups too.
 

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6,450 Posts
For me it all depends. If I'm taking a quick ride on the desolate airport roads around the corner that I know extremely well, I'll wear jeans, boots, t-shirt, and shades. If I'm ever going on any highway for any reason I wear jeans, boots, t-shirt, shades and full face. If I'm going to take a girl out on the bike I wear the full face and bring her one...
 

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and the Adventure Cycle
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6,141 Posts
For a few rides I took after PA first got rid of the helmet law, I rode without one. But most always do now (fullface). Just had to try it w/o but felt more comfortable/safe riding with.
Occasionally I'll ride without my leather, but not for longer rides (50+ miles).
One textile jacket I have has armor, but I don't wear that one too often.
Always wear over the ankle boots and jeans.
Almost always wear gloves.
On longer or colder rides, I'll also wear chaps.
 

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738 Posts
I've been participating in group rides and taking the free Doc Wong Riding Clinics (advance riding techniques) offered in my area and consistently hear one of two stories from all riders who went down;

1. It was "the only time" I wasn't wearing my gear and I was injured pretty bad.

OR

2. The gear did its job and kept me injury free.
 

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Undercover Sportbiker
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1,097 Posts
The only time I go sans gear is when I am running my bike up and down my street. Keeping in mind that "my street" is only about 100 yards long and ends in a cul de sac, with my house being halfway up it. The only traffic are my neighbors, and fortunately they are very respectful of the fact that half the houses have kids. If I go any further than my street it's either geared up or no bike. I crashed once already, and the gear I wore did its job, and the gear I DIDN'T wear was useless in my backpack so I got a nice big puck of rash on my left knee. The only person I ever preached to about gear was my bud and forum member StevenJ, and he thanked me after HIS big crash (used to ride in shorts and a beater tank top, no gloves, just a helmet.
 

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Premium Member
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4,778 Posts
ATGATT, head to toe.
 

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Late to the party
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321 Posts
Full face helmet - ATT
Leather Jacket, armored - ATT
Gloves - ATT
Boots - ATT
Kevlar Jeans - Non commute riding
Padded overpants - Work commuting

Where I deviate is I don't often wear the overpants on the way home from work because of the temperature. Although I should, as they are mesh with pads and I don't have the liner in them until later fall and early spring. Chinos would not fare well matched up against any road surface.

Tempted to do anything less... You betcha, but I fight the feeling.
 

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Vintage bike addict
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859 Posts
In Ohio you must wear the helmet for your first year of riding. Obviously hard to enforce. I'm amazed at so many who ride dressed as they would for shopping. My chaps and leathers make for a really warm ride so I opt for denim jacket, jeans, cut resistant work gloves and FF in hot weather. I wear all leathers when temps dip into the lower 60s and less. Oh I always wear steel toe work boots.
 

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Intelligent Redneck
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270 Posts
I always have a textile jacket with armor, modular helmet (for some reason I can't get my head into a full face that fits without tearing my ears off), and gloves. The only place I am lacking is a good set of riding pants. I just can't find gear to fit my long legs and skinny waist that I have enough money in the bank to buy.
 

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659 Posts
It depends on the temperature. below 70-75 degrees I'm in boots, armored overpants, armored jacket (textile or mesh), gloves and fullface. Over 75 I switch the overpants for jeans, and over 85 I have to lose the jacket and switch to the half-helmet. I tend to sweat alot, mostly from my head. If I get overheated, pretty soon I am dripping inside my helmet. If we could here, I would lose the helmet on the hotest days. It's a trade-off that you just have to be aware of and accept, and try to ride accordingly.

I just picked up a Shoei fullface that has better vents. I am hoping it is cooler than my Icon.
 

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always jeans, boots, and gloves. most of the time a half helmet because when driving in town w/ my full face both my visor and my glasses fog up. Don't own leathers yet because even cheap sh!t is expensive and I'd rather buy quality:rockon:
 

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641 Posts
I wear a FF helmet, mesh armored jacket, gloves, jeans and over the ankle boots. I wear all of this no matter what the temp is because I like my skin (I have 6 tattoos I don't want destroyed all because I wanted to be cooler and more comfortable) and there are a lot of idiots in my area. The only place I'm lacking is the a pair of riding pant which, as soon as I can afford them, I'm getting the Tourmaster mesh flex armored overpants.

I saw 3 guys at the discount tobacco store in the month of May alone, that had all laid down their bikes because of some idiot around here that all had some pretty nasty road rash (one had a broke leg, arm and collar bone), and guess what, none of them were wearing any gear other than a helmet (GA has a helmet law). That's why I'm ATGATT
 

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Premium Member
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344 Posts
I replied "Most of the gear, most of the time". It really depends on what you mean by ALL of the gear, this means different things for different people.

I commute to work on my bike a lot, and have to dress "professionally" (dress shirt and slacks; no jeans, t-shirts, polo shirts or sneakers), so my gear is all of the variety that I can quickly put on and take off on top of my normal clothes. To go to work I wear Calvin Klein "Webb" boots that look like dress shoes when pants fall over them, but go well up over my ankle (7" or 8"). Otherwise I have Frye motorcycle boots.

I always (100% of the time) ride with: a full face helmet, gloves with hard knuckles, and over the ankle boots. Even if I'm riding to get food a mile away and back. Mesh backed gloves for hot weather but always with the gloves. If you come off the bike, you will 100% stick your hands out to catch yourself. I can well imagine how much fun it's not to have to regrow skin on the palms of your hand (all the while having to field weak sex jokes from high school buddies).

I nearly always (90%+) ride with a jacket with armor inserts (soft not hard) for the back, elbows and forearms. A mesh jacket in the summer, and leather otherwise. BUT, if it's raining or overcast and likely to rain, I will wear my Helly Hansen hi-vis raincoat. And maybe once or twice a year, on really, really hot days and for very short trips (such as to the supermarket and back), I will ride without even the mesh jacket (such as if it's still soaking wet from getting caught in an unexpected rain shower while wearing it).

I almost always (85%+) ride with overpants: mesh overpants in hot weather, leather overpants otherwise. But my rain pants are just cheap, thin pull-on waterproof overpants, there's no armor or kevlar or anything like that to them (but they do wad up and easily stow in my luggage). I admit to occasionally riding in just jeans on weekends. (In which case at least they're the "Draggin' Jeans" that have a layer of kevlar.)

I mostly (75%) wear strap-on knee armor under the overpants. I have come off the bike while braking and swerving to avoid an accident, and got road rash on my knees through the khaki chinos while seeing my FF helmet, gloves and jacket do their work of taking the brunt of the asphalt friction for my face, chin, hands and torso. The overpants should save me from the road rash, but the armor will save me from getting (another) nasty bruise or worse on the kneecap.
 

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Undercover Sportbiker
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1,097 Posts
Where I deviate is I don't often wear the overpants on the way home from work because of the temperature. Although I should, as they are mesh with pads and I don't have the liner in them until later fall and early spring. Chinos would not fare well matched up against any road surface.
+1000 - I can say for certain that Eddie Bauer chinos do not offer any protection. The day I crashed, I didn't switch back to my riding jeans for the trip home cause I couldn't get the liner out of them. So instead of sweating, I got a nice case of rash.
 

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Straight roads are evil
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580 Posts
ATGATT, there is no other way to ride.

A few weeks ago I had a 300+ ride in nuclear meltdown heat. Did I take off any gear? You better believe I didn't. It's a lot easier to wipe off sweat than to wipe on skin. Instead, wrapped a soaked scarf around my neck and poured water on my shirt.
 

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Super Moderator
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Just so we are clear here...ATGATT means Full face helmet (with DOT eye protection), leather or textile armored jacket, leather or textile armored pants, leather boots , protective gloves (leather, kevlar , etc)

I voted for MOTGMOTT as I am afraid to say I will sometimes just wear jeans...along with all the other ATG stuff.

I realize the risk and am fine with it (most of the time) I usually do wear my mesh armored pants, but not ALL the time.

KM
 

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Linkmeister Supreme
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7,960 Posts
I put down MOTGMOTT, for the whole 6 weeks I was able to ride before my accident. I was wearing the best I had at that time, which is; a half shell helmet, leather jacket (non MC and no armor), western style riding boots, leather chaps, leather work gloves. My most serious injury was a broken left leg, from dragging it for ~50' along an offramp guard rail. What I am curious about now is shin pads. A guy could wear ones made for hochey players, but I don`t know if they are strong enough. Are there any available that are designed for riding?

I know I need to get an armored jacket, gloves and probably pants too, when I can ride again. I know as well that I should be wearing a FF helmet, as I insist my grandkids do when riding with me.

I wore ATG riding to and from work (11 miles one way, ~ half of it in the city), from mid May until the end of June when I crashed. I did ride occasionally close to home, with only helmet, gloves, running shoes, jeans and shirt. Mostly about half a mile down the road to pick up one of the grandkids from home or school.
 

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Love My Baby
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1,165 Posts
If I were on a crotch-rocket, I would wear ATGATT. But I'm on a cruiser and I want to enjoy the ride, the wind and the sun. So I wear a very good pair of gloves, and a good pair of sunglasses or night-vision glasses, both with padding to keep the wind out of the eyes. Always wear long pants and never wear flip-flops.

Looking for a good pair of mid-height light-weight sneakers/hikers with toe and heel protection, but haven't found one yet. Anyone know of any??
 

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Premium Member
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Discussion Starter #20
Thanks for taking the time gang, both voting and commenting.

Personally, I'm in the most of my gear, most of the time group, and I have crashed before too. And when I did, I was wearing all the stuff I owned at that time....

Anyway, like I said, I'm just curious how many do what. And thanks again.
 
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