When it comes to motorcycle specific gear. Gloves are one of those things I often see as a let down. Most gear companies approach gloves as an after thought. There are some good ones, but they are often too specific, like ultra light racer gloves, or too overpriced.
I have had a couple of riders show up lately wearing regular work gloves, like Mechanix Wear or Dewalt. This got me thinking about alternatives and what I might be looking for to suit my own hands. Often my riding gloves get treated more like work gloves anyway. I always seems to be wrenching on bikes along the trail.
So I happened upon the Max Performance gloves in the local big box store. At first glance, they seem more or less correct; one piece palm, elastic wrist band, light padding across knuckle. The store didn’t have the color/size combo I was wanting, so the ones you see here were ordered online, $20 for two pair via Amazon.
I took the new gloves along on a four day trip to Baja, doing my typical tour route. Overall, my experience was quite favorable. Some of it was in ways that I did not quite expect either. Here are some of my observations:
overall fit of my medium size glove is good, it is not quite as tailored as a premium motorcycle glove, the fingers are slightly thicker, but they have a nice roomy feel too
comfort was fantastic, no binding in the palm and the elastic back has lots of flex, almost feels invisible
the elastic wrist suits me very good, eliminating the binding that comes from a velcro style closure
gloves are showing a small bit of wear, couple of loose stitches and tiny hole starting to develop one finger, but I changed three flat tires with them on too
super easy to get on and off, in Baja probably do that 8-10 times in one day
I like these gloves, regardless of price. Getting rid of the small bit of binding that naturally occurs in most gloves as they flex across the knuckle and from the wrist closure makes a noticeable difference for me. I stand for long periods of time, so my wrists are often at a slight angle. I could notice a small reduction in hand fatigue over the course of a full days ride.
I would probably not choose these for race use. Although the only obvious problem I might see is scooping them full of dirt in a fall. But for my regular riding, I am going to stick with them for a while and see how they last. At anywhere from half to one quarter the list price of a typical moto glove, they seem like a good deal. I treat my gloves pretty hard, so if I don’t expect them to last forever.