125cc Motorcycle Owners Club

Honda CBF125, CBR125 and Yamaha YBR125

GORE-TEX X-TRAFIT Motorcycle Glove Review

This review is not about a particular brand or model of Glove,
instead it will show you what a difference a GORE-TEX X-TRAFIT lined glove makes to motorcycling.

The review below was written in 2009, when the glove cost £69.99 (normal price, not a sale).
After a while the price went up to £89.99 and so the review was updated.
All Hein Gericke stores in the UK were closed down or sold to their competitors in 2012 and 2013.
The Hein Gericke brand (a German company) was purchased by a Chinese company in late 2013 or early 2014.

Hein Gericke X-TRAFIT Leather GORE-TEX Glove.
The glove uses the latest technology to bond the famous GORE-TEX
(waterproof, breathable and windproof) fabric used in outdoor clothing
(mountain, skiing etc.) with a skin friendly fabric to a Motorcycle glove.

This special bonding (X-Trafit) technique
makes all 3 layers feel like they are a single layer. So you have no slipping
and sliding between the layers like a normal multilayer (lined) glove.
This substantially improves feel and control of the motorcycle.

Before this bonding technology existed you had to decide
if you wanted the feel and control of an unlined glove
or the waterproof and warmth of a lined glove
(with far less feel and control of the motorcycle).

The quality of the leather, stitching and stretchable leather
(on back of hand and fingers)
+ visor wipe on left thumb makes this a very high quality glove.

The glove is very highly priced at £89.99 a pair but as you will see in the rest of this review,
it is well worth the extra money for every type of rider and bike on the road.
For information about cheaper gloves, see Gloves

I have used this glove for over 1 year now and well over 5,000 miles,
there is no sign of ageing or wear and tear so I expect a very long life out of it.
It has been used on all types of road including motorways, city centre grid lock,
tight twisty back roads and over 200 mile rides in a day.

The glove does not have the feel and control of a high quality unlined glove,
but it is far closer to an unlined glove than a lined one (not bonded).
The GORE-TEX liner works incredibly well to block the wind and yet breathes very well.
I found it amazing how it can block the cold wind, but when it's hot the breathability means your hands do not get hot or sweaty.
It really is a miracle fabric and for UK motorcyclists hands an absolute essential piece of equipment (due to our weather).

In the rain the special bonding (X-Trafit) of the GORE-TEX liner to the leather
means that water cannot soak through and collect between it and the liner.
This results in a glove that does not get soaking wet and heavy like a normal waterproof or non-waterproof glove.
It also has a visor wipe and of course is waterproof and breathable.

The rest of the glove has also been very good.
The quality of the leather, stretchable leather on back of hand and fingers have all made the glove a real joy to use.
As well as it's light weight and reduced vibration from the bike (compared to an unlined glove).

The breathability of this glove is very, very good for a lined glove, this is due to not only being GORE-TEX,
but also that there is no air gap between the liner and the glove, as well as the holes in the leather on the sides of the fingers.

In the middle of the hottest days in summer when the humidity was at its worst (in the UK), the gloves were very comfortable.
So comfortable there was no advantage in riding the bike with no gloves on.
A couple of times near the end of a long ride I did take them off and ride the bike,
I found it only very slightly better without (so slight it was not worth the added danger).

While many other motorcyclists I saw had to resort to using no gloves (very bad if you fall off or are hit by anything).
In the past I had high quality unlined gloves and in those conditions
also had to take them off due to the wool insulation on the back of the fingers = hot and sweaty.

The only times I had trouble in those conditions is if my hands were already hot and sweaty and I put the gloves on,
rode the bike for 3 miles in the city traffic and then tried to take them off.
Since the gloves had not had enough time to dry my hands, they were a bit hard to get off.
But as soon as you had done a few more miles
and had a bit more air flowing (due to bikes speed) they were dry and comfortable.
This is due to the glove being able to remove the moisture from your hands and get it out of the glove.
It really is weird taking the gloves off and finding your hands 100% dry with no moisture (sweat).

So these gloves are not hot and sweaty in the hottest and highest humidity in the UK summer.
So you would assume there is a load of air getting through the glove and hitting your hands.
Well there is not, the GORE-TEX stops the wind getting through.
This means when you have a cold wind hitting the glove, your hands do not receive the cold air.
GORE-TEX really is a miracle material.
I think the correct word for all this is climate control.

Of course there always has to be some disadvantage to all of this.
Well the problem is when summer is over and it starts to get really cold
(7 Celsius, no sun, 50 mile ride with a strong head wind was real trouble after 25 miles).
The glove does stop the cold wind getting though the glove,
but cannot stop the outside of the glove getting colder and colder due to wind chill.
The glove has no insulation, not even air between the layers (due to X-Trafit), so the cold seeps through over time and distance.
If the glove did have insulation or air between the layers it would be like other gloves,
too hot in summer or harder to control the bike.
But I have found a glove perfect to take over when it gets this cold and is also the best glove in the coldest of the UK winter,
see 3 Finger Winter Glove Review.

You may also like to read my GORE-TEX Coat Review   GORE-TEX Trousers Review and Motorcycle Boots Review

And my Waterproof Windproof Breathable Liners section in my Clothing page.

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