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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Yesterday on my group ride the guy behind me crashed his brand new R6 into a deep ditch shattering straight through one of those plastic boxes housing internet stuff, luckily I saw him and got some people to turn around and help him, he was lucky and was okay, it only looked like cosmetic damage. So that made me think, if that was me what could've happened ya know? I currently wear:
Helmet: Scorpion EXO-R420 ($150)
Jacket: Alpinestars Men's Viper V2 Air ($200)
Gloves: Alpinestars Men's SMX Plus V2 ($115)
Pants: Regular denim jeans
Shoes: TCX Street Ace Air Shoes ($130)
All of this gear came from best beginner gear guides back when I started riding, almost everyone in my group rides wear full leather track suits, full boots with metal plating, gauntlet gloves and $700+ helmets. I definitely think that would look a little ridiculous on a Ninja 400 on the street but I was wondering which pieces of my gear should be upgraded, and possibly some recommendations I can look into. There is soooo much gear on the market I get a bit overwhelmed looking at it all. I definitely do not want to buy a $1000 track suit, while I could technically afford it, I cannot justify it on this bike for street riding. Riding weather in my area also ranges from 60-90F regularly. Usually hovers between 70-85 most days, so its very warm.
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·

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The gear you have already is not bad, its decent gear. But yes, the pants is the weakest link in it all, shoes are as well.

Those REV'IT! Vertex GT Pants would be much better. Or even the Iron Workers Jeans(both @Tracy and I have a couple pairs of the Cargo pants version, and like them)

Although the jacket is not leather, I have seen both adventure riders and sportbike riders go down in them and come away much, much better than those who did not have a jacket on.
Granted leather or even a hybrid jacket would provide more abrasion resistance where you are sliding for longer distances and speeds against a hard surface(asphalt) the right mesh jacket can do a pretty good job as well.

Also those Alpinestars SMX 6 v2 Boots will be better than those shoes providing more lateral and roll support(to some extent)

Unfortunately no gear can prevent "all" injuries, without causing safety and mobility issues while riding.
Sure some are better than others.
Its the injuries where you come into contact with hard non-mobile(could also be mobile into your path of travel) objects that suddenly stop the path of travel for yourself or a body part at speeds.

For example if he went into the ditch and hit a phone/power pole instead, depending on speed, none of that gear is going to be any better....well debatable, obviously an airbag vest will help from crashing internal body parts as severe...but there will still be injury.

Not trying to scare you, but many years ago I responded to a motorcycle accident vs telephone pole, at night, in a corner that was at the end of a straight away. (sharp bus stop left hand corner with a telephone pole about 20 ft off the road right in the middle of the apex)

The rider was on a R1 and ran off the road at what had to have been easily over 100mph, I am thinking 150+, he flew off the road and when he did, somehow ended up flying through the air sideways, just about horizontal to the ground, and hit the telephone pole square in the chest/neck region........he was instantly killed. I would elaborate on the fact that he "did" have a really nice Shoei helmet on, it was still on his head......but where his head was in the helmet was the bad part.

Riding with the right gear and good gear is important, but riding within your limits, abilities, your head on a swivel and having safety as a priority is going to probably be the best gear out there.
 

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Pants: Regular denim jeans
All of this gear came from best beginner gear guides back when I started riding
I mean surely they suggested actual riding pants.
What kind of riding are you doing?

Honestly for "spirited rides" I gear up like it's a track day. That means one piece/two piece zipped up, good gloves, boots, helmet. Crashing is crashing, the tar isn't softer on the road than the track. If anything you need more protection because you're more likely to hit something hard rather than slide. So I value stuff that absorbs impacts on the road, a lot of textiles lack this without adding additional armour.

Generally, without getting into brands, I'd go something like:

Pants/Jacket:
Minimum/Commuting/Rain: Good textile pants / jacket with decent armour
Best/Fun riding: One/two piece leather with decent armour.
Decent armour means CE back protection, elbow, shoulder, knees, hip. The more the merrier.

Helmet:
Something better than DOT approved. ECE/Australian standards here are generally good, think US has Snell or something? Main thing here is fitting.
You can also get some helmets with MIPS etc. but a lot of helmet choosing is what fits your head, your brand range will be limited unless you have some perfect shaped head.

Gloves:
Full gauntlet leather. I don't see the point in having short gloves.
You are very likely to wang your hands during a crash.

Boots:
Again, full length boots. Decent full length boots will prevent a whole range of issues that can happen when your leg is caught and twisted unnaturally.
No boots are going to be great for hiking around, assuming they actually protect your legs, so I don't see the point in buying short things.

Key points for a lot of them are fitting. Gear isn't going to do anything if it comes off during a slide. Armour isn't going to do anything if it moves instead of takes impacts.
End of the day it's a balance between comfort and protection. If you're going out with a purpose of riding I don't see the point in skimping. Commuting is another story, where you may sway towards comfort over protection, and generally your riding is more subdued so the high speed crash scenario is a lot less likely.

Plus side, if you go with the full leather, full length get up, you can do a track day without having to cough up more money.

I don't buy into the "it'd look weird on a Ninja 400", get the right gear, not gear that "suits your bike". This is why Harley people wear skull caps, leather vests, and come out horrible after minor accidents.
 

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I don't buy into the "it'd look weird on a Ninja 400", get the right gear, not gear that "suits your bike". This is why Harley people wear skull caps, leather vests, and come out horrible after minor accidents.
Right, even a full face helmet can save your face from the likes of a random golf ball bouncing up off the road and smashing you in the face.
Saw this happen to a women on a Harley, doing about 45-50, wearing a salad bowl on her head, golf ball bounced up off the road, smashed her mouth and fractured her maxilla.
Poor women had to have alot of reconstructive surgery, new set of upper and lower front teeth, and may never look the same.

Unless I am just commuting, if I am on a weekend or spirited fun run I wear my track suit, boots, gloves, the whole 9 yards.
 

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Bought a few things in the past month from STG, they had a real good deal on Shoei RF1200s Shoei RF-1200 Solid Helmet

RST tech pro jeans, heavy but I know if I go down they'll protect me RST Aramid Tech Pro CE Jeans

Got rst short boots cause they were out of the regs but just checked and they got more stock RST TracTech Evo III Sport CE Boots

Various other things. I like Stg cause they are local to me and I love how they review so many of their products in YouTube videos. They know what they are selling and are very helpful on the phone.
 

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I like Stg cause they are local to me and I love how they review so many of their products in YouTube videos. They know what they are selling and are very helpful on the phone.
Their videos are great, especially the Ninja 400 project bike stuff, but just be warned, their online support, comms and shipping speed are fairly lacking.

I ordered a soft twist throttle spring and Woodcraft clip ons from them. Paid extra for international express ($26 USD extra). The spring was delayed for whatever reason, which is fine, but I had to prompt them for that information as it had a 2-3 day lead time and did not move until 16 days later. Good comms would have been notifying the user when something with a 2-3 day lead time would take 16 days.

They then printed the shipping label, but held the package for 6-7 days before getting to a depot. Delaying it further.

It finally arrived a month and a bit later from ordering, and they had just ignored the "express" postage I paid for and sent it using standard international mail. Offering me STG credit for the postage difference, but it's kind of useless given ordering from the US is a last resort due to postage costs.
 

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I'm exactly the same line of thought as Dbrain regarding riding gear. There's a rather positive attitude towards wearing safety gear here in Australia, and it's actively encouraged amongst the community.

If I'm going for a spirited ride, that means getting fully kitted up. That means a 2-piece Dainese leather suit, Alpinestars SMX-6 V2 boots, Gimoto race gloves, Dainese back protector, and a Nolan N87 helmet. If riding around town doing errands or commuting, the only difference I make to what I wear is swapping out to some kevlar jeans instead of leather pants. If I'm riding in the rain, I'll wear my BMW Rallye suit, BMW goretex boots.and Dainese goretex winter gloves.

As he mentioned, the gear must fit snugly and securely or else it won't do its job properly. Quality safety gear is an essential purchase IMO...afterall, you only get one body per life! ;)
 
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