Ever go for a breakfast ride with friends and when you do stop for breakfast, all you can hear are motorcycle jargons flying around? It sounds like a different language! This is often the case when you start researching, to buy motorcycle gloves. Diving into the world of motorcycle gloves can be overwhelming, especially when you encounter a slew of technical jargon. From leather types to armour materials, there's a lot to understand.
This article aims to demystify common motorcycle glove terms, helping you make informed choices when selecting the right pair for your rides. And then maybe impress your friends on the next breakfast ride!
Accordion panels are pleated sections typically found at the knuckles and fingers of gloves. They allow for increased flexibility and ease of movement without compromising protection.
Motorcycle gloves often come equipped with armour, which are protective inserts or plates placed in vulnerable areas like the knuckles, palms, and wrists. Armor enhances impact protection, reducing the risk of injury in accidents.
The CE mark indicates that a product complies with European safety standards. In the context of motorcycle gloves, CE-certified gloves have undergone rigorous testing to ensure they meet safety requirements.
The cuff is the portion of the glove that covers your wrist. It can have various designs, including short cuffs, gauntlet cuffs, and elastic cuffs. The choice of cuff style depends on your riding preferences and the level of protection you need.
A double gauntlet is an extended cuff design that provides additional protection by covering both your jacket and wrist. It helps prevent wind and rain from entering your gloves.
Double-stitching is a manufacturing technique where two parallel lines of stitching are used to reinforce seams. It enhances the durability and longevity of the gloves.
These are stretchy materials commonly integrated into gloves to improve flexibility and fit. They allow for better hand movement without sacrificing protection.
Gel padding is a feature found in some motorcycle gloves, especially those designed for long-distance touring. It provides extra comfort by cushioning pressure points on the palm.
Gore-Tex is a high-performance waterproof and breathable material commonly used in motorcycle gloves. Gloves with Gore-Tex liners keep your hands dry while allowing moisture vapor to escape. This is a brand name and you could find gloves using similar materials but from different brands.
Hard Knuckle Armour
Hard knuckle armour refers to rigid protective inserts on the knuckles. They provide superior impact protection in case of falls or collisions.
Heated gloves are equipped with heating elements that provide warmth to your hands during cold weather rides. They are usually powered by rechargeable batteries. These gloves are useful when riding in subzero temperatures.
Kangaroo leather is a premium material known for its strength, lightweight nature, and abrasion resistance. Gloves made from kangaroo leather offer exceptional dexterity and durability. Due to its cost, you will generally find track specific gloves using this material.
Kevlar is a high-strength synthetic fibre often used in motorcycle gloves to reinforce areas prone to abrasion, like the palms. It enhances durability and abrasion resistance.
A knuckle hinge is a flexible joint or panel on the back of the glove's knuckles, allowing for better movement without compromising protection.
Neoprene is a flexible, waterproof material commonly used in the construction of glove cuffs and wrist closures. It offers a snug and comfortable fit.
A palm slider is a protective element located on the palm side of the glove. It helps reduce the risk of wrist injuries during slides in an accident. When you fall at any speed or activity, you will have noticed that you generally land palm first. Because you instinctively use your hands to break your fall. The same is the case on motorcycles. The palm slider allows you to slide over the asphalt, where the textile or leather material would grip the asphalt.
Perforation refers to small holes or vents strategically placed in the glove's leather to improve airflow and keep your hands cool during warm weather rides. A long time ago, when motorcycle gloves were made of leather only, your hands would get baked riding in hot countries like India. Thanks to leather perforation, you can now enjoy the safety of leather without getting sweaty palms.
Pre-curved fingers are designed to mimic the natural shape of your hands when gripping the handlebars. They reduce hand fatigue and improve overall comfort during long rides. If the gloves are not pre-curved, your finger strength is constantly required to keep your glove in the shape of the throttle. This simple design change drastically reduces rider fatigue.
PU (Polyurethane) leather is a synthetic leather often used as a cost-effective alternative to genuine leather in motorcycle gloves. It offers decent abrasion resistance and flexibility. But now there are many textile materials which offer more options to the rider.
Short Cuff vs. Full Gauntlet
Short cuffs are shorter wrist-length gloves, while full gauntlet cuffs extend beyond the wrist. Short cuffs offer more flexibility and are suitable for casual riding and urban commuting, while gauntlet cuffs provide extra protection and are ideal for touring and racing.
Thermoplastic Polyurethane (TPU)
TPU is a robust, abrasion-resistant plastic material commonly used in the construction of protective armour and knuckle guards in motorcycle gloves.
Modern motorcycle gloves often feature touchscreen-compatible fingertips, allowing you to use your smartphone or GPS device without removing your gloves. This is a boon in this day and age, when we all use smartphones and often have to check our phones without removing gloves.
Vented vs. Non-Vented
This term relates to the presence or absence of ventilation in motorcycle gloves. Vented gloves have perforations or mesh sections for improved airflow, while non-vented gloves are designed for cooler weather riding.
Ventilation panels are strategically placed openings or mesh sections in gloves designed to improve airflow. They are particularly beneficial in Indian summers, as you enjoy constant airflow.
Wrist closures are mechanisms that secure the gloves around your wrist. They can include Velcro straps, zippers, and snaps, ensuring a snug and secure fit. This helps secure the gloves in the event of a crash as it does not slide off your hand.
Hopefully this article will help clear the fog from all the technical jargons that you will find. And with this additional knowledge, you should be able to make a more informed decision on the next purchase of your motorcycle gloves. If not, then it should help you impress your motorcycle friends!