Textile motorcycle suits are becoming increasingly popular among riders especially for those who use their bike for everyday commuting or for long expeditions. They are much better than leather in terms of their ease-of-use and comfort. However, they are not as protective as leather motorcycle suits.
Type of Textiles for Riders:
Different brands are introducing newer technologies in their textile suit to improve their protective features along with comfort. The textiles used are tough and light. There are many different types of textile available, but the most common among them that are used for motorcycle suits are the following:
This synthetic material was initially developed for air force to guard the pilots against flying debris at high speeds. Therefore, this material is thick and tough for resistance against abrasions and to prevent tearing during high impacts. The varieties of nylon suitable for motorcycle gear include ballistic, Cordura and Dynatec of 620 Denier; make sure that your nylon riding suit makes use of one of these brands.
Kevlar fibers have very high tensile strength; therefore they cannot wear or tear easily defending the rider during crashes and unfortunate accidents. It is very light and breathable ensuring the comfort of the rider. For higher strength against abrasions Kevlar fibers are woven with Cordura and Lycra.
When is it Best to Use Textile Suit?
Textile is less shielding than leather, but it is EU approved for its protective capabilities. This implies that it does provide the rider with adequate defense. However, it is still not suitable for extreme rides or race-track riding. It is enough for day to day commuting and long-distance riding. The textile suit must come with CE approved armor in the sensitive areas like spine, shoulder, hips, etc. to guard your body against impacts.
The main advantage of textile is that it is much more resistant to harsh weather conditions than leather. For summer riding the material is breathable and comes with ventilation zippers. This allows the sweat to evaporate to the surroundings which will keep you cool and dry. To ride is cold weather, the suit come with removable insulating linings which trap the warmth within your body. Usually the textile used in suits is waterproof, so that you can ride in the rain too. On the other hand, leather suits offers no resistance against water. In addition, textiles do not restrict the movement of the rider as they are flexible. The rider can easily maneuver his bike in a textile suit and also carry out other activities.
It is also very easy to maintain textile. For leather, you need to condition the leather after use, you need to take special precautions for storage and send the suit to professional cleaners. However, for textile suit you can simply dump it inside your washing machine along with your laundry.
Suits made of textiles are much lower priced then leather suits. One can find a good textile suit for just about $100, while it is difficult to find a superior quality leather suit for even $500. However, since textile is less durable, the suit may not remain useful after a major crash and you may have to invest in a new suit, whereas high-quality leather suits can withstand a number of crashes before becoming completely ineffective.