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I am getting back into riding after a few years off. My HJC SY-MAX helmet needs replacing as it is over 10 years old.
Also need ideas on gloves. An old guy doing mostly street riding and planning on a couple of long trips.
Looking for good value (not the best, not the cheapest).

Any suggestions?
 

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Helmet - first priority is fit. About the only way you can tell is go to a dealer that has several brands, try them on and see what fits you best. You need to wear the helmet for 15-20 minutes at least to see if there are any pressure points. Once you find the ones that fit, start looking a features you would like to have, and then go with price but bear in mind, higher priced helmets tend to be better quality. You do, by and large, get what you pay for. Here is a pretty good site for comparing helmets.

Gloves - again what fits. Always keep in mind what the glove is for.....protect you in a getoff. Your hands are usually the first thing to hit the ground so a good, strong, leather palmed glove is what you need to look for. Look for gloves that you can cinch up around your wrist. You would be surprised at how a glove can come off. After that, go with features you want. eg. warmth, waterproof, etc.
 

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Like mentioned above, don’t skimp on gloves. In a crash, you’ll instinctively put your hand out to catch yourself, so look for palm and wrist sliders. Anything non-leather is likely to shred against pavement.

Also don’t skimp on boots. Think of how often you use your feet and ankles. If a $400 pair of boots can prevent a lifetime of walking with a limp (or the cost of an ambulance ride) it’s certainly worth the investment.

For gloves I use Held Phantoms.
For boots I use Sidi Adventures.
Both top-of-the-line, but I got them lightly used on eBay/forums at a discount. Take good care of your gear, wash the sweat out of leather a couple times a year, and they’ll last quite a long time so it spreads out the investment.
 

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My gear is:

Scorpion EXO T1200 helmet

First Gear Mesh Jacket (cannot remember the exact name but it is similar to the Rush Air Mesh)

First Gear HT Overpants

RevIt Dirt 2 Gloves for Summer

RevIt Sirius H2O gloves for winter

I also have a Bilt rain jacket that I wear over the First Gear mesh does an outstanding job of blocking all cold air for winter riding

And I have some Freeze Outs to go in either glove to supplement them - with the Dirt for coolish weather, and with the Sirius for really cold weather

I ride with an old pair of boots now. Need to get something new myself for the same reasons as recommended above. And it may be time to replace the jacket and pants soon as they’re getting kind of old.

Hope this helps.
 

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Scorpion or HJC make good helmets, if you are buying all new it can get very expensive all at once. Check out cycle gear.com and leatherup.com. Once you get started you will see what you want and can then decide how much you want to spend one item at a time. Cycle Gear usually has sets of jackets and pants in Bilt or Sedici brands.





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Its totally cool if this makes me sound a bit of a goof but... I would suggest eliminating a lot of helmets right off the bat by fitment. What I did many years ago was tear off a large sheet if Reynolds Wrap Aluminum foil. Form it to your the entire head from just above the eyebrow, to the back portion of your skull. Give it a good pat down so that its firmly shaped. Now slowly pull it off. Look at the shape and give yourself an honest review of just how oddly shaped it is. Ha! You must know if you have an Oval shape or a long oval, ect. When you go shopping for helmets, you'll be able to discard those that dont have your shape rite off the batt.
Now you can decide if you'll ever want speakers, communication devices.
If so, make sure the liner is removable AND if there are removable ear pieces.
Dont forget to check out the "For Sale" thread here on the site as well. Not too long ago there was a pair of nice (street) riding boots.
And for the gloves, I recommend following the advice of MattR302. PALM / WRIST SLIDERS!! You'll thank yourself later.
I'm not a riding/rain gear snob... even though I'd love to drop some serious coin on some high end stuff, my first gear stuff has kept me bone dry in several decent sized storms. They can get kinda hot in the dead of summer but it's not like I'm traveling across the world either.
Safe travels in your journey and welcome back to the fun side of life.
 

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I'm using a Cycle Gear ADV Style helmet. Same as a Bilt but they call it Sidici now. I got the Bilt ADV suit cus it matched the color I painted the bike. I'm a fashionista! Got Aerostich Stuff and BMW stuff too. It's all good and several pieces I got on severe sales or used for a pittance. Good boots? Sidi has served me well.
You can spend a fortune buying what some suggest is best or be practical and research a bit.
If you blow away an Aerostich suit in a crash, they will offer you maybe 10% off on a new purchase.
Basically if it saves your hide, it's worth whatever you paid for it. I've destroyed a SHoei helmet and a Scorpion helmet. The Shoei was an old 200 and the Scorpion RF1000 that I paid $110 for. Despite the argument that if you have a 100 dollar head, buy a 100 dollar helmet. It's snot and dell and DOT and European approved stuff pretty much all around so paying biggy buck is your ego talking. A fool and his money are soon parted?
There are a few discussions going about protective vest/jackets. I'd go vest rather than like the jacket I bought cus you can wear any of the multiple garments with the vest but only be protected by the jacket and the other stuff stays in the closet.Dang.
 

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Depends on what fits
For me LS2 Valiant helmet - the modular helmet that fits my egg shaped head the best
Joe rocket gloves - cheap, fit decent when I wear them - learn to hold onto the bars or roll to your back
Joe rocket jacket - a couple of them with Forcefield back protectors in them to replace the stock foam pads. (Atomic 5.0 and Phoenix Ion Mesh)
Icon Overlord pants for when it is cold - easy on over my jeans
 

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My gear is:

Scorpion EXO T1200 helmet

First Gear Mesh Jacket (cannot remember the exact name but it is similar to the Rush Air Mesh)

First Gear HT Overpants

RevIt Dirt 2 Gloves for Summer

RevIt Sirius H2O gloves for winter

I also have a Bilt rain jacket that I wear over the First Gear mesh does an outstanding job of blocking all cold air for winter riding

And I have some Freeze Outs to go in either glove to supplement them - with the Dirt for coolish weather, and with the Sirius for really cold weather

I ride with an old pair of boots now. Need to get something new myself for the same reasons as recommended above. And it may be time to replace the jacket and pants soon as they’re getting kind of old.

Hope this helps.
Almost identical to my riding gear
 

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I like HJC helmets - good value and they fit my head. If you ride in winter they have some models that they make snowmobile shields for. They DON'T fog up - ever. I have one on my IS-Max. My RPHA Max has a pinlock that fogs up.

Joe Rocket stuff is GREAT quality for a GREAT price. I bought a used Ballistic jacket about 12 years ago, still perfect after 100,000 kms or so on it. I got the Ballistic pants at the same time, too - used. Still perfect.

I just bought a Tourmaster Advanced jacket (3 season like the Joe Rocket) for maybe half the price of the big names. I outgrew the Joe Rocket one, but the Tourmaster is REALLY nice.

I have a cheap mesh jacket - Fieldsheer - that is nice, but too loose so the armour won't stay where it's needed IF it's needed. Jackets have to fit snug enough to actually protect.

Joe Rocket gloves are great. I also have Alpinestars mesh gloves that came apart at half the age of the Joe Rockets.

Sidi boots are expensive, but I don't think you can find better ones. If they say they are waterproof, then they actually ARE. Most motorcycle boots that claim to be waterproof actually are NOT. That said, I can't afford Sidi anymore, so just bought Forma Adventure Low boots. They may need a SnoSeal wax coating to make them 100% waterproof, but that's OK with me. They are REALLY nice and solid boots - made in Europe - some in Romania and some in Croatia. I looked at the black and the brown ones - bought the brown (Romania), the black ones were Croatia. The company is Italian.

Cheers,
Glenn
 

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I have had great experience with motorcyclegear.com for years. But for helmets and gloves especially, you just have to try them on. And then buy from the place that actually gave you that opportunity.

If you'll be getting boots, I'll be listing a brand new pair of Forma Adventure Lows in grey size 11US/45EU as soon as I get around to it (2023?).
 

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Jacket / Pants

As several have mentioned: for high value, consider used gear. Probably best source is advrider, though ebay might work well, too. It can sometimes take a while to find what you want in the right size, but there's no better value IME. If I didn't splurge on Motoport gear I intend to keep for over a decade and know with absolutely certainty will serve me well, and stumble into a cheap Aerostich Darien setup (from advrider) for somewhat better performance and ease-of-use in winter, I'd probably have Olympia gear.

Helmet

Even though your 10 yo HJC helmet fits well, I wouldn't assume a new one will fit the same. HJC used to make a model that fit my head, and its successor model(s) didn't. There are a surprising array of good helmets available at a variety of price points, especially if you have an "intermediate" or even "intermediate-oval" noggin. (Unfortunately, my loooong oval noggin is restricted to exactly one make and model, and it isn't cheap)

Gloves

Gloves I think are the trickiest purchase. The fit can be hit or miss, quality is wildly variable among those that are reasonably priced, and my experience with leather lasting more than a year or so of nearly daily riding is dismal. While they're more expensive than some and substantially cheaper than others, I think Motoport Racing Gloves (misnomer...I wouldn't by any stretch consider them "racing" gloves) are the best deal going. My brother has a pair that's nearly 10 years old and are in as good shape as mine of just a year or two.

Boots

I've tried a handful of different, inexpensive boots over the years. None were particularly durable or protective and they all paled in comparison to my Sidi Adventure 2s which I picked up at a great price. I would have saved money if I had just bought good boots in the first place. Keep an eye out for sales on discontinued or last-year's models.
 

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A point of interest on RPHA. They are (at least mine is) very good quality - noticeably better than the parent HJC models in fit and finish. BUT, I have had to get some parts replaced under warranty (5 year warranty, I think). The plastic plates that the metal lugs for the visor lock onto cracked. Also, the detent piece for the faceshield (also plastic) cracked.

I also had to get the cheek pads replaced when I bought it. I wear a medium and that's what I ordered in. I almost couldn't put it on. My Honda dealer where I bought it ordered in a pair of size large cheek pads for it. Perfect fit now.

Cheers,
Glenn
 

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Consider getting an airbag vest, like the Helite Turtle.

You can also get a jacket with the airbag vest built in, but it's a LOT more money.

My Turtle has saved me from injury once already in the 3 years I've owned it. I won't ride without it.
 

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Old guy ...protect your knees ...




and much better than most built in ( I'd say all ) riding pants knee armor. $45

I really like Airglide pants.

Jacket ...I lke Joe Rocket mesh for value but there are a lot out there. I buy gear used. Mine cost $50 ...10 years ago and still in good shape and a ride quite a bit both in NA and Australia.
Ride with layers.

I have a Scott 3 season that works from near freezing to about 80F ...after that gets too toasty.

If in real heat. Armoured shirt is light and airy...I don't use that kidney belt.


However a kidney belt for distance is wonderful.


Boots lots of choices but get something with good ankle protection.

I wear these BMW All around boots on pavement. Goretex, easy in out and well thought out...over priced new I think but got mine effectively brand new for $50 and a long drive through traffic.


Helmet - I like convertibles. Have a C3 that is warm and does not fog and picked up for 1/3 of new ...2 years old.
Value for money I like this

 

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What exactly does a kidney belt do for you?

I've done some long-ish rides. Luckily I've never had a particular pain point, except one ill-advised trip where I tried to wear a backpack. It's been more a matter of overall tiredness.
 

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Hi Final Four -
First things first...where and when do you plan to ride. Here in the Mid-Atlantic, temps range from the 60's in March to the mid 90's during the summer, back to the 50's by November. I have a very good FirstGear jacket that is good for all except the heat of summer. Helmet is full-faced Arai, gloves are Alpinestars that have held up well for 5 years. Distance/weather boots are Icon Patrol, simple, waterproof and good value. Warm weather and not in the mountains are Alpinestars SMX-1 vented. Think of a mesh sneaker with a hardened heel box and toe box. Great boot for hot weather riding! When I head for the mountains a couple of hours West, I usually add a couple of layers to the sidecase...light merino wool sweater, jacket liner, extra gloves (waterproof Sedici) and a fleece collar for cooler temps at elevation. Cycle Gear is a good starting point as you can by several low cost items to start out with. I have a pair of Sedici mesh pants that have been replaced 3 times now at no cost as they just do not hold up too long, but for the $100 spent they have done what they need to and with the liner in, they are waterproof. With the insulated liner in you feel like the Michelin Man, lol but they work. Most of the time I wear a pair of Rev' It kevlar reinforced riding jeans with armor and have to say they are a huge improvement over regular pants of any kind. Lastly, ear and eye protection are a must!
Sorry for my typical long-winded answer to your query, hope it gives you some ideas that work for you.
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