FXR Racing Clutch Prime Pant And Jersey Review

 

 

 

 

 

Somewhat new to the American motocross market is the Canadian-based snowmobile gear company FXR Racing. FXR has been pushing the motocross market very heavy by sponsoring numerous privateers and now in 2018 they just announced JGR Suzuki’s Jimmy DeCotis to their team of riders. Their entry level priced line of motocross gear called “The Clutch Prime” and has seen its fair share of usage on my body over the past few months. The Clutch pant is constructed of 600D Polyester, a double layer knee system that features an inner material with heat and abrasion resistant leather outer panels, pre-shaped knees to accommodate room for all types of braces, and a soft-stretch span at the crotch and back leg areas for added mobility. There are also knit stretch inserts above the knee areas for extra mobility as well as full front closure system. The Clutch jersey features lightweight mesh polyester, moisture-wicking material to repel sweat, a V-neck shaped collar and tapered cuffs for unrestricted mobility, a longer length drop-tail hem to keep jersey tucked in, and fade-free sublimation prints.

 

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Putting on the pant I immediately noticed a more athletic cut thigh area that is tighter around the legs, but also stretchy enough so it doesn’t feel too restrictive while riding. The crotch area of the Clutch pant is not quite as snug and has a little more room to breathe before the pant tapers down into the more athletic cut thigh. The knee area is roomy enough to accommodate the few knee braces that I tried (which were Asterisk, CTi, EVS RS-9 and Mobius). Sizing is true for my 32-inch waist and the ventilation of the pant, although not as good as some other pants that I have worn, is still adequate on warmer days. The leather knee area has some signs of wear from the hinges of the knee braces, but with over four months of riding time on the pant, no holes have shown up to greet me. The closure system stays intact and the pant stays in place even with extra grippy seat covers. The colors on the pant have stayed vibrant and not a hint of fading has been seen.

 

The Clutch jersey, although very comfortable when worn, feels a little heavy and somewhat baggy in the arms compared to the pant. The material is soft to the skin, but can be a little warm on hot summer days. It does, however, wick away sweat fairly well once you are riding. The polyester of the jersey is stretchy, but like I mentioned above is not as form fitting as the pant. It seems the Clutch jersey’s cut is a little more on the “comfort” side through the arms and torso area, which can flap around while riding. Me being on the slimmer side, I would rather see the jersey’s arm length and arm area tighten up just a little more to match the pant’s more athletic cut. For you bigger boys out there this might be a good fit however. The tapered cuff on the arm however is a nice touch and it also stretches somewhat, so that I can pull them up to get some added airflow to my arms during longer motos. For all you metrosexual riders the V-neck shaped collar is a one of my favorite aspects of the jersey. Less restriction is felt around my neck area when moving around on the bike. This collar doesn’t leave me with a rash like some other rounded cut collars (which are typically much tighter). Just like the pant, the bright colors stay true and the jersey has yet to fade after many rides.

 

                                                               Male model status. 

                                                               Male model status. 

I have been very pleased with FXR’s lower price point/entry level Clutch pant and jersey. However, the downside is at $120.00 for the pant and $45.00 for the jersey, the cost is slightly on the steep side for an entry level price point. The upside is the FXR gear has held up to my durability standards, which is not always easy to do. Yo can go to fxrracing.com to view the full line of  2018 MX gear and order now.

 

Any questions about this gear feel free to reach out to me at kris@keeferinctesting.com

Arai VX-Pro4 Helmet Review

 

 

 

I have been wearing the VX-Pro4 has been in my helmet test rotation for over a year now. The overall look and function of the Pro4 is similar to the older model, but with a few new features that further refine Arai’s helmet fitment, which more of a round shape. There are several cool new colorways that pop up from time to time and I personally like bright helmets, so this particular color is my favorite. 

 

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Starting with the basics of the Arai lid, the visor is long and wide enough to provide better protection from your buddies roost. The visor comes with a black sticker on the underside to reduce glare and has large air vents for an ample amount of cooling. Rather than Arai drilling more or larger holes in the shell, the venting pieces on the top and back of the helmet have been designed to be more efficient at moving air through the helmet. On the older Arai’s I had a problem with the front of the helmet being to close to my big nose, but Arai has since moved the grill and mouth vents to the front of the bar, creating more space in front of my face. The cheek pad design hinges out of the way when taking on or off the helmet, yet is supportive and secure while riding. As with all Arai helmets, the Pro4 features a multi-density foam that Arai claims, in conjunction with the helmet’s stiff shell, provides better protection in a wide variety of crashes.

 

When I first slipped on the medium sized helmet, I noticed how much material was making contact with my head. The cheek pads are long and tall and extend well past the bottom edge of the shell which I love. Combined with the padding around the rear of the helmet, the VX-Pro4 has a very “round head”’ feel, unlike other helmets that can feel more ‘on top of the head. I have a round shaped head so this type of shell makes it one of the most comfortable lids to have on my head. The pillow like feel of the liner is by far my favorite and if there is a standard for comfort the Arai VX-Pro4 helmets are it for me. The ERS (Emergency Release System) cheek pads have a snug feel to it and wraps around my cheeks with a snugger fit, but if you do have a fat face than Arai offers optional cheek pads to snap in. This is a great option for you guys that don’t like cheek pads touching your cheeks as much. At $749.95 this is one of the higher priced helmets, but the comfort you get from the Arai is well with the price marker. 

 

Ventilation is not the VX-Pro4’s strong point compared to some other models like the 6D or even a Bell Moto 8. I like said earlier it is “ok” but in the hot summer months of California I was sweating more with the Arai than others. Arai’s primary goal of having the strongest shell makes for very few vent holes. The lack of ventilation is pronounced by the amount of very comfortable foam lining. The relief zones for your ears are pretty small and I felt more material in that area than with other helmets (hence the comfort). This makes the Arai a very quiet helmet inside while riding compared to a louder 6D, but the 6D breathes better for me. The goggle port is on the small side and to accommodate larger goggles like my favorite pair of Oakley Airbrake’s or goggles with nose guards, it’s tough to get them situated inside the port creating a good seal. I removed the rubber nose protector immediately on the VX-Pro4 to get extra room for goggles. 

 

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Don’t be scared to throw the liner in the washing machine as the liner can withstand the abuse of the washer just don’t throw it in the dryer ok? Let the liner air dry and you will be just fine. With the VX-Pro4, there is a balancing act with safety and comfort. After watching a bigger man  stand on the empty shell of a Pro4 without it flexing much at all, I got a good taste of how strong and hard this shell is (similar to a SHOEI VFX-W). Plus, with Arai’s triple density foam and breakaway visor and vent pieces, I have little doubt that the helmet will perform very well in a high speed crash. However, since it isn’t the lightest or most ventilated helmet on the market, you have to decide for yourself where you fall in the wide spectrum of helmet comfort and performance. I personally love the comfort so it’s one of my top three helmets to ride with. 

 

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You can check them out at araiamericas.com and see all the designs they have available. If you have any questions feel free to email me at kris@keeferinctesting.com.

Fox Racing 360 Viza Pant and Jersey

 

360 Viza: $174.95 (jersey), $59.95 (pant)

 

The Fox Racing 360 line of racewear is the flagship set of gear that is currently worn by many factory motocross riders in the sport today. Fox designed the 2018 360 line of gear to be super flexible when the rider is in the attack position and using different types of fabric that wick away moisture better. The pants utilize TruMotion 4-way stretch fabric for a wide range of motion, while 600D polyester protects high abrasion areas. This strategic fabric placement delivers a combination of mobility and durability. Fox’s Rider Attack Position (RAP) construction is used for a precise fit, so it can put you in the best position to be comfortable. Finally, laser cut perforations and vents channel air through the pants for superior breathability. The 360 jersey also has a moisture wicking polyester fabric, a larger hole polyester mesh back panel for enhanced airflow, minimal athletic precision fit cuff and an athletic fit collar for increased comfort up near the neck. 

 

               No this isn't a Tinder profile pic. It's helmet head and a bad ass set of gear. 

               No this isn't a Tinder profile pic. It's helmet head and a bad ass set of gear. 

Immediately, when you see the Fox 360 Viza line it screams “Best Dressed” right? If you’re team “Lit Kit” you can stay and continue to read, but don’t get too comfortable. If loud isn’t your thing, other more traditional colorways our available in the 360 line with the same features as the Viza line. The pant fits well, goes over many types of knee braces and the waist is true to size. While the waist seems true to size I also noticed that the 360 pant still has more of an “athletic cut” feel below the waist (which I like). The pant is tighter around the thigh and knee area (again, which I prefer), but if you have bigger than average legs the pant might be on the snug side in those areas. However, don’t fret as the pant is stretchy enough to not cut off your circulation and moves with your lower extremities very well. Yes, even if you’re a size 38, just ask my test rider Kelly Gelhaus. You will just have to get used to the more revealing fit if you're old school. Trust me, I'm 40 years old and come from the baggy gear era and I am just fine with the snugger fit of the 360 pant! My knee braces never get caught up or snag on the inside of the pant and feels seamless against my body. Even though the pant is on the slimmer side moving around on the bike didn’t feel constricted while I rode. There were tons of flexibility at the knee and I noticed more give when I swung my leg over the bike in the groin area than other pants that I have tried lately. The life of the pant has been superb and although it has seen its fair share of crashes, has held up well. The leather knee panels are still soft and pliable and even the abuse of the recently "knee brace shootout" have not created that much wear. The pant comes in sizes 28 all the way up to 38. 

 

Slipping on the 360 Viza jersey gives you a minimalistic feel. Its lightweight and breathability gives you a cool feeling when the temperature rises. The cuffs elastic keeps them from restricting the forearms but are tight enough to not let the jersey slide up on you when you’re riding. Like the Fox 360 pant, the jersey is made for slimmer riders. If you have broad shoulders or carry a beer belly you might want to try a size larger than your traditional sizing. The tail of the jersey stays tucked inside the pant (sorry Jason Anderson), but I do wish the jersey had a little padding on the elbows for some protection from lighter type crashes. The Viza jersey comes in a range of sizes from small to XXL. 

 

For the price of the Fox 360 line of gear it is amongst some of the most comfortable and long lasting gear that I have tried to date. I am coming to prefer this 360 gear to the FlexAir, especially in the cooler months of testing that lie ahead of me. If you are looking for a pant with durability, flare, a slim feel without being restrictive the Fox 360 Viza gear is a top choice, especially when I go to the gear closet and decide on what to wear. Don't laugh! This actually happens, ask Mrs. Keefer. She thinks something is wrong with me. :)  

 

Alpinestars Tech 10 Review

 

The Alpinestars Tech 10 has been around the motocross and off-road world for a long time. If you listened to my “Boot Review” podcast you know this is one of my favorite pair of boots to wear. The Tech 10 boot has received continuous R&D development updates over the years, but has remained unchanged for the last couple. The TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) blade on the Tech 10 is said to prevent frontal hyperextension and offer greater flex control, while the medial-facing panel improves structural stability. The TPU calf protector plate utilizes a rear blade system to protect the heel and features a hyperextension guard. Its TPU shin plate uses a dual closure system with an internal microfiber flap, and the buckle-closure system is self-aligning and replaceable. The Alpinestars Tech 10 comes in full sizes only, no half sizes. I wear a size 10.5 shoe and a size 11 Tech 10 fits me well. The attention to safety and comfort extends to the inner booty as well as the torsion bars help control ankle rotation. The dual Velcro enclosure ensures a secure fit on the foot and prevents dirt from getting inside the bootie.

 

These Alpinestars Tech 10's have seen some serious track time. 

These Alpinestars Tech 10's have seen some serious track time. 

Once my foot slipped into the Tech 10 it felt snug enough in all the right places. It does take a little time to break in these boots (more than a SG-12 or Sidi), but once broke in (about an hour or so of riding time) I felt like I could bend my ankle, feel the shifter and brake pedal just fine. The toe box is fatter and could take some time to get used to if you’re coming from another boot; yet it can make shifting a little easier with the fatter toe box area. The high impact, bridged aluminum buckle system is easy to adjust and can actually close shut even when muddy. However, when they are muddy they are tough to grab a hold of and unbuckle. To get them unbuckled quicker, get a flat blade screw driver to dig some of the mud out of the buckle area to release. Riders with bigger calves may have some difficulty getting the middle buckle to reach its perch even with the strap in its outermost position. (I would suggest if you can’t get the middle strap fitment correct, order a top strap, which is longer). My calves are on the skinny side, but the strap was almost at its full-extended length so take note of this. 

 

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The Tech 10 boots are very comfortable on hard landings and have an incredible soft feeling sole. The shock absorbing quality of these boots are second to none. My ankles and feet have never been sore after a long day of riding. The Tech 10 boots have me feeling secure and locked in on the bike. The Tech 10 boots weigh in at roughly 10 pounds and while they are not the lightest boot on the market, the protection I do feel on the track is so good I am willing to overlook the heavier feeling I get at times. This usually only occurs at the end of long motos or when it is super muddy. One other standout of the Tech 10 is that if you don’t ride on the balls of your feet—like you should—the sole will feel a little awkward because it is shaped to almost make you ride on the balls of your feet. I don’t know if Alpinestars designed the sole to help the rider in this aspect, but I like that this boot helps proper rider technique! When standing on the pegs it feels as if the front and rear of the sole is raised, and this makes you ride in that sweet spot (the balls of your feet). It took sometime to get used to this feeling when I first started riding in these boots, but now it’s second nature to me and forces me to ride like we all should. The rubber like material on the side of the boots are very grippy and offer tremendous grip against steel and aluminum frames. The Tech 10 boots offers a seamless feel on the bike and will not catch or snag on any part of the machine. After several months of use I did find that the central dual compound soles are a little soft for super sharp footpegs, but almost gets the same amount of wear as other top brand boots on the market. The central insert of the boot can be replaced yourself or if you want Alpinestars to do the work for you, they can replace the complete full sole for you if you send them in.  

 

                                  25 Engine hours on these soles and still pretty good. 

                                  25 Engine hours on these soles and still pretty good. 

The colors that Alpinestars offer are some of the most eye popping and can go with any type of gear that you might be wearing. #BESTDRESSED The cost of the boots will set you back $599.95 and come in sizes 7-14. You can check out the complete line of boots at alpinestars.com

 

 

 

Bell Moto 9 “ET3” Replica Helmet Product Review

 

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I get asked a lot about helmets and which one is the best to purchase. I always answer with “that’s a tough question to ask”, because there are so many variables when it comes to finding the correct helmet for you. It’s not always so black and white when it comes to testing helmets. Putting the helmet on and seeing if it is comfortable to your head shape is step one, making sure you have the correct sizing is another important aspect of getting the correct helmet, your determined price-point and not to mention what technology (the helmet comes with) that makes you feel safe is another. There is just so much to think about when getting a new helmet. I have more of a round shaped noggin and some helmets just don’t fit my head shape that well, but when I got the chance to test the Bell Moto 9, I was excited as I haven't really got to put that much time inside of one. Until now!  

 

                                                  Eli Tomac Bell Moto 9 Replica 

                                                  Eli Tomac Bell Moto 9 Replica 

The Eli Tomac replica Bell Moto 9 is an awesome looking helmet (especially if you’re a ET3 fan) and weighs in at 3.1 pounds. Bell uses a “TriMatrix” Composite Shell that is a blend of three materials: carbon fiber, Kevlar and fiberglass. I am crazy about visor adjustment and this visor is the easiest visor to adjust I have her used. There’s no screw under the middle of the visor as this design only uses mounting screws on each side, and those are metal “QuickFlip” fasteners that require no tools. Simply flip out the tab, loosen by hand, adjust the visor up or down and tighten again. Boom! However, I think the best feature about the Bell Moto 9 is the Magnefusion Emergency Release System (MERS). This is another way of saying that it uses magnets instead of snaps, and it’s like finding gold! It’s that good! The cheek pads are held in place by several magnets, just like they would be with traditional snaps. From a safety standpoint, these are capable of being removed while the helmet is still on the rider’s head in case of a serious head injury. Many injuries happen, or are made worse, after a crash when some goof ball tries to take the helmet off. Once the cheek pads are off, the helmet can be removed without putting any unnecessary force on the neck and spine. The MERS system is designed to work specifically in conjunction with the Eject Helmet Removal System. There is a foam insert in the top of the helmet which can be removed to make room for the Eject system that every rider must have in a professional AMA/FIM sanctioned event. The Bell Moto 9 is ECE, Snell M2015 and DOT approved. 

 

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 Now for me I am not a huge fan of the “M” claw, but I do think it’s cool that Bell has a helmet that the normal weekend warrior can purchase to look like Eli. That being said it was tough for me to win any “Best Dressed” awards when I was at the track wearing it, but I was happy with the comfort of the Moto 9. There were no major pressure points that the Moto 9 caused to my head and the liner was plenty soft (although not the softest material I have tried) against my freshly shaved summer time hair do. I do like the cheek pads to push a little against my face for a snug feeling fit and the Bell Moto 9 did just that. I also thought the chin strap and cheek pad magnets held up well against the over abusive test that I gave them. I sat in the back of my truck between motos on several test days and just played with the magnets (snapping them on and off). The strength of the magnet remained strong and didn't get worse over time as held its integrity. Ventilation in these summer months is key for me and the venting on the Moto 9 is one of its strong points. The chinbar has a stainless mesh mouthpiece and vents along the side. Two intakes are tucked under the visor and the top of the eyeport is lined with openings. The rear of the helmet has nine exhaust ports: one directly on top, four on the upper rear, above the goggle strap, two at the base and another pair along the bottom edge. It’s tough to actually feel airflow in most helmets, but with the Bell it was easy to feel a breeze while riding. The weight is on the heavy side while riding and I could feel my neck get slightly more fatigued than with some of the other lighter helmets on the market. However, I will not complain about that too much if it has the protection to back up the weight. I feel like there is a fine line with having a helmet that is “too light” and that leaves me with a sensation of having less protection while I ride. I also like that the nose area of the helmet isn't that close to my large nose and it also doesn't have a mud guard that comes into my face too much. At $400.00 for a replica helmet I would say that is slightly better than other helmet manufacturers out there today. With the reputation that Bell has with safety, I have a good piece of mind knowing that I am wearing a quality helmet, that will give me as much protection necessary when or if I do take a header. I wonder if Josh Hill will hook me up with some type of Monster Energy contract if I wear this at some local races? If I am testing a 2018 Kawasaki you know that I am going to be wearing this helmet! You can go to bellhelmets.com to purchase and check them out for yourself.  

 

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USWE Ranger 9 Hydration Pack Product Review

 

 

                                             100 Ounces Of Thirst Quenching Goodness. 

                                             100 Ounces Of Thirst Quenching Goodness. 

 

 Southern California’s 2017 summer was somewhat mild in terms of heat until the temperature’s recently soared to around 110 degrees. Lately I’ve been riding a lot of moto (Kris is trying to turn this off-road goober into at least a Ronnie Mac), until I got my hands on the Husky TE250i. I immediately headed into the dry and dusty hills of the high desert in seemingly the hottest month of summer. Kris put me in charge of the USWE Ranger 9 hydration pack, so I was excited to see what it had to offer in terms of storage (I’m kind of a bring everything AND the kitchen sink trail rider) as well as it’s hydration capacity (I’m also kind of a “Hey lets go up that canyon and see if it leads to a dead end” trail rider). 

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I’ve used many hydration packs in my numerous years exploring the California deserts; everything from those goofy crossbar water jugs, an MSR hydration bottle that basically zip tied onto your chest protector, to racing desert Hare and Hounds with a small pack that has a disconnect and fed right into my helmet mouthpiece. Now that I’m a washed up vet rider, I’m all about practicality and functionality, so when I got the Ranger 9 I was happy to see that when they say one size fits all it really does. There are two orientations to put the Velcro chest straps that allow the pack to fit from medium to extra-large. I’m 6’0 170 pounds and with the adjusters snugged up tight, when full, it hugged my body tight but not uncomfortably and had plenty of adjustment to be loosened if desired. The chest strap is simple, straight forward and kept the pack in place throughout multiple trail rides. The main compartment is for the hydration pack which holds 100oz (basically almost 6 normal sized water bottles), and also has a mesh pocket that I used for cliff bars and snacks. The bladder itself is well made, seals well, is easy to fill, and best of all the bite valve is fantastic. It doesn't drip on me while I ride, but it also has good flow and easy to get water out of while riding. 

            Off-Road Tester Michael Allen Loves Sucking On The Hose And Catching Air. 

            Off-Road Tester Michael Allen Loves Sucking On The Hose And Catching Air. 

On the outside of the pack there is a top pocket that is big enough to hold a cell phone, tow strap, or microfiber for you goggles. The third and largest storage pocket has elastic loops to hold a multi tool, tube of quick steel, or screwdriver. There is a label inside the pouch to put important info just incase the pack is left next to the trail (which I have done in the past). Also, in the third pocket is a Velcro pouch where I kept my wallet, it’s towards the bottom of the pack which is where I like to store the heavier items (no I’m not saying I’m rich, just giving a comfort tip). Lastly there is a mesh pocket where I kept my keys, I like to keep them separated from my phone so they don’t scratch it or break the screen in a crash.  Even with all the items I listed, the pack still had a little room to shove a few more snacks in without looking like I was a hunchback. Overall, I’d say that USWE did a great job designing a hydration pack that carries a lot of cargo as well as water. The only thing I wish the Ranger 9 pack had is a clip to hold my keys. Although they were secure in the mesh pocket, there is always that fear of getting back to the truck and realizing your keys fell out of your pack when you opened it up on the trail. With an MSRP of $112.26 the Ranger 9 isn’t cheap, but having used goofy cross bar water jugs, it’s worth the price and I would recommend it to any hardcore day long trail rider. USWE makes a wide range of hydration packs from backpack size to small packs which attach to neck braces, so if you’re looking for a hydration pack to help stay cool, check out all of USWE’s products at uswe-sports.com.  - Michael Allen

2018 FLY Lite Hydrogen Racewear

 The Lite Hydrogen pant and jersey has been one of my favorite sets of gear to wear on any given day for a couple years now. The 2018 Lite Hydrogen pant now features the revolutionary BOA closure system that was once only on the Evolution 2.0 pant. The BOA system offers fast, on-the-fly micro adjustability that provides a truly dialed in fit with the simple turn of a dial, creating a customized fit around your waist. The Lite Hydrogen pant is an athletic, minimalist, stretchy fit that ventilates extremely well on long, hot desert testing days. The Lite hydrogen pant also has a 90% stretch panel construction, leather heat shields (on the knees) and sublimated graphics. The Lite Hydrogen jersey also has an athletic fit to it with laser cut perforations to help dissipate heat, a tales printed collar, an open zero cuff with mesh gussets, a low profile collar, an extended tail and sublimated graphics that are claimed to be fade resistant. I put all of this to the test on many long, hot testing days! 

The Fly Lite Hydrogen colorways are so clean for 2018. #BestDressed 

The Fly Lite Hydrogen colorways are so clean for 2018. #BestDressed 

 

Let me tell you it wasn't easy to keep this gear hidden from the social media world because I was constantly riding in this gear for a while before it was released. Luckily for me I had a lot of confidential testing days that kept the spy photos and “Insta Bangers” out of the equation. I am extremely happy with the new BOA system on the 2018 Lite Hydrogen pant. If there was one thing I didn't like about the 2017 Lite Hydrogen pant is that it was so stretchy that it pulled down (in the rear panel) while accelerating out of corners that left me with an untucked jersey by lap three. I am not into the untucked, let if flap jersey style like Jason Anderson so I was happy to see FLY addressed the waist area issues. With the 2018 pant and the BOA system all I have to do is turn in the reel and tighten, so that my pant is securely locked my waist. If you want to loosen the waist area you pull the BOA reel outwards and it releases the tension on the pant. Let’s face it, most motocross riders have no ass and usually the jersey will come untucked immediately, but not with this BOA system. The pant has held up great against my knee braces and although this is a very light weight pant it has superb durability. The Lite Hyrdrogen pant is not as light as the FOX FlexAir, but has held together better over time. If you are a bigger guy don't fear because FLY sells the Lite Hydrogen pant in sizes 28-38. I have seen a pair of 38’s on my buddy and it doesn't look abnormal at all. When comparing the FlexAir and Lite Hydrogen cuts, the Fly pant is not quite as tight as the FlexAir and doesn't hug against your legs as much. This left me with a little more room for an array of knee braces that I tried over the duration of the test. The colors that Fly came out with in 2018 is so much better than the colors they had in 2017. Bright yet clean colorways are what I prefer and that is exactly what the Lite Hydrogen is. Although I am not sure Fly recommends putting your pant and jersey in the dryer, I have done so on many occasions and the BOA reel sticks works flawlessly.  

 

With the Lite Hydrogen's BOA reel incorporated into the light yet stretchy pant, it remains snugly close to your waist. 

With the Lite Hydrogen's BOA reel incorporated into the light yet stretchy pant, it remains snugly close to your waist. 

The Lite Hydrogen jersey ventilates very well and the open cuff design is one of my favorite aspects of this jersey. Sometimes when you get an open cuff design the jersey will ride up your arms during a moto, but the Lite Hydrogen jersey’s cuff will stay in place and not go all Mike Alessi on you. The athletic cut of the jersey is on the snug side, but again not as tight as a FlexAir jersey. It’s important to note that the Lite Hydrogen is not as tight as the FlexAir for the bigger dudes with some extra weight in the belly region. Don’t fear the spare tire because Fly offers a 2X and I promise you will not look all EMO with a snug fitting jersey. Once you slip the jersey on you can feel how soft it is and will the material not irritate your skin. You will also still have enough stretch for an under protector if you choose to wear one (which I did on occasion). Mrs. Keefer has washed the pant and jersey several times and the colors have not yet faded or dulled out. One downside to the jersey is that the collar is somewhat tight around my neck, so I stretch mine out a little. However, be forewarned if you are like me and stretch your collar out, there is a chance for mud/dirt to get inside your jersey. I am willing to take that risk for a more roomy neck area fit, so the juice is worth the squeeze for me to do that.  

 

Fly Racing has come a long way with their gear fitment and designs over the years. The 2018 Lite Hydrogen pant and jersey is light, takes abuse well and looks bad ass! The pant costs $169.95 and the jersey is $49.95. You can check the complete line of 2018 Fly Racing gear at flyracing.com and if you have any questions, please feel free to email me at kris@keeferinctesting.com. 

Gaerne SG-12 Boots

 

Gaerne SG-12 Product Evaluation

 

The Gaerne SG-12 boots have become one of only three sets of boots I go to grab when I go ride. 

The Gaerne SG-12 boots have become one of only three sets of boots I go to grab when I go ride. 

 

If you listened to the “Keefer Tested” Boot Shootout Podcast you know the SG-12’s scored very high marks. I have been wearing the Gaerne SG-12’s for a while now and they have quickly become one of my favorite boots to put on my feet when lacing up to hit the track. The SG-12’s are Gaerne’s top-of-the line motocross boot as it incorporates a hinged ankle design, large grip guards on the inner calf, a carbon fiber shank in the sole, and a dual durometer Vibram replaceable rubber sole. The boots weigh in just over nine pounds, which is around the same weight as a set of Alpinestars Tech 10's. However, the funny part about that weight is that it feels lighter while riding than what the scales are telling me at home. When lifting my leg up high in corners the boots feel like they are more compact (without pinching) around my ankle than a set of Alpinestars Tech 10's and I don't feel they are as fat or heavy when doing long motos. The sizing runs a size big as I am normally a size 11, but I wear a size 10 in an SG-12 so be aware of the sizing or try some on first. The toe box area is also not as fat as a Tech 10, yet bigger than a Sidi Crossfire boot. The colors that Gaerne offers are some of the most eye popping and cleanest there is.  

The inside of the SG-12's have great traction against the frame on any machine. 

The inside of the SG-12's have great traction against the frame on any machine. 

 

The buckle system is excellent with easy moving buckle straps and three available shin plate settings. I am very picky about buckle systems, but the Gaerne rates at the top of my list with four secure, easy to use replaceable clasps. The only other boot that I have tried that has as good of straps as the SG-12 are the Sidi Crossfire's. The boots have held up very well and I have yet to see a ton of wear as they still clean up nicely with a soft brush and some soap and water (don't judge my cleaning abilities in these photos however, I was tired from a long day at the track). The dual-composite, anti-shock sole provides good feel on the pegs and is holding up great against my razor sharp titanium footpegs. Getting accustomed to the SG-12's took very little time and comfort of the non-bootie design is worthy of an all-day ride. Break in time didn't take that long and I was comfortable after my second ride on the track. 

The soles of the Gaerne SG-12 boots have plenty of cushion on those hard landings. 

The soles of the Gaerne SG-12 boots have plenty of cushion on those hard landings. 

 

Gaerne has created a terrific boot with the SG-12. My favorite features by far are the easy to use (even when muddy) buckles and the rubber grip guard, which is the grippiest I have felt on a hinged boot. The flat, grippy inner profile makes squeezing the bike very simple yet is seamless enough not to catch anything on the side of the machine. I was also impressed by the dual-composite, anti-shock sole, which felt great on long test days where I am pounding lap after lap. Some non-bootie designed boots hurt the bottom of my feet on a long day, but the SG-12 has enough cushion for my pushin. Yes, the Gaerne is not cheap (at $549.95), but when you’re getting a quality boot that is comfortable and has so far held up very well I will gladly spend the money. 

 

The Gaerne SG-12 is going to be continuing to be in my steady rotation of boots and hopefully I will be getting some more colors added to my collection soon. If you want to check out the SG-12’s you can go to www.gaerneusa.com. If you have any questions about this test you can drop me an email at kris@keeferinctesting.com anytime and I will try to respond.

2018 Fly Racing Gear Launch Photo Gallery

Last month we had the pleasure of meeting our friends at Fly Racing at their headquarters in Boise, Idaho to ride in the new 2018 gear. The 2018 Fly Racing gear is available today at your local dealer. You can check it out at flyracing.com at midnight eastern today! Check out a handful of photos from the great time we had up in the great state of Idaho

 

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2018 Thor Product Launch

Wednesday the Thor MX guys and gals revealed their 2018 line up of racewear at a private facility near San Diego. The private facility had huge jumps and a very large outdoor style motocross track for us to play on. The Star Racing Yamaha team, Factory Yamaha's Cooper Webb, off-road stars Destry Abbott, Gary Sutherlin and a whole host of others were trying the new gear out first hand. My brother from another mother Preston Jordan shot some photos of the gear and riders, so we put together a little photo gallery for you all to feast your eyes over. Look for a full test on the new 2018 Thor Racewear soon right here at keeferinctesting.com. Enjoy! 

 

Dylan Ferrandis airing it out for PJ's lens. 

Dylan Ferrandis airing it out for PJ's lens. 

Here is a few from the 2018 lineup. 

Here is a few from the 2018 lineup. 

The Purvines/DA8 Off-Road Racing Team was on hand to throw whips as well. 

The Purvines/DA8 Off-Road Racing Team was on hand to throw whips as well. 

Mitchell Harrison 

Mitchell Harrison 

Colt Nichols

Colt Nichols

I can throw in a butt whip from time to time. 

I can throw in a butt whip from time to time. 

My good friend Gary Sutherlin was going hard to make sure he looked good in front of the moto guys. 

My good friend Gary Sutherlin was going hard to make sure he looked good in front of the moto guys. 

Wil Hahn still can haul ass and throw huge nacs! 

Wil Hahn still can haul ass and throw huge nacs! 

Challen Tennant 

Challen Tennant