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Motorcycle Riding Gear Now And Then.

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Historic Motorcycle Riding GearHow has motorcycle riding gear evolved since the early beginnings of the motorcycle?

Well looking at the history of motorcycle riding gear we have come a long way. In the early days many of the things that were used for motorcycle riders as gear were adopted from military use and aviation. The earliest head protection was aviator caps and jackets made for aviation. Boots were borrowed from the military engineer boot which was made to protect the foot and ankle with heavy cowhide. Gloves were also borrowed from the aviation industry.

Our modern pieces of motorcycle gear have come a long way in protecting us since the early days. Many of our modern materials have enabled us better and sometimes lighter protection while out on our beloved motorcycles.

Motorcycle helmets in the beginning:Early Motorcycle Helmets

Initially motorcycle helmets were borrowed from the aviator in the form of a cap made from leather combined with goggles to keep the wind out of your eye. This type of helmet of course did not offer much protection from impact but rather from debris or road rash. Military helmets were also adopted as riding gear. These gave more protection but were still inadequate. Many of the older helmets also did not have a strap that kept the helmet on during a crash. Our Modern motorcycle helmets really are a marvel of modern engineering. Thanks to organizations like the Snell Foundation and organization like it who research head trauma and how to improve a helmet as well as modern innovation we have developed a modern motorcycle helmet that is quite light and functional with the best protection possible.

The earliest motorcycle jackets:

In the beginning jackets for bikers were borrowed from the bomber jackets airplane pilots would wear as well as jackets that were used in the military. These types of jackets were made from heavy leather which helped protect the rider from road rash much like the modern motorcycle jacket does. However modern motorcycle jackets are a vast improvement by offering armor in sensitive areas that will likely impact the road surface in the case of a crash. Most commonly you will have armor in the forearm, shoulders, and back.
Another innovation is mesh motorcycle jackets which are made from a Kevlar mesh. This modern material has a high abrasion resistance and will protect you in a crash as well as being much lighter as well as having a superior airflow than leather biker jacket.

Vintage Leather Motorcycle Boots Motorcycle boots and gloves were also borrowed:

Motorcycle boots in the early days of riding were pretty much any type of boot that was available and made from heavy leather. Engineer boots became the popular choice in the early days of the biker and still persists in some form today. With modern motorcycle boots still being made from a heavy leather and usually also being longer than regular boots giving you the ability to easily tuck your jeans in them as well as offering armored areas of the toe, shin and ankles for added protection in a crash are also a modern innovation. Motorcycle gloves were mostly regular work gloves or aviator gauntlet type gloves. Modern motorcycle gloves have also come a long way just like the rest of the motorcycle riding gear you wear. The gloves are usually re enforced in the palm area as well as offering knuckle protection. You can even plug them in and get a heated version if you are riding a touring bike.

So all our biker gear owes its origin to military and the early pioneers of the airplane, as we have produced faster cycles and technology has evolved so have the things available for us to wear when we are out riding.

Related Topics:
  • Motorcycle Helmets
  • Motorcycle gloves
  • Motorcycle Boots
  • Motorcycle jackets
  • Riding Gear

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