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No jacket Required

Updated: May 8

Knox underarmour has all we'll need

A good foundation allows for a lot!

What happens when you put a traditional motorcycle jacket head-to-head with a Knox armoured shirt?

I have a selection of jackets. Some, the ones I wear most often, are Gore-Tex lined fully waterproof affairs. They all zip to their matching trousers and they all fit me quite well. The others that I have are leather. I match them with armoured jeans and my hipster Strada boots. The jackets are and older Alpinestars one. As I wore it high siding someone else’s Fireblade it looks awesome and that was before it was finished on a black base with white and silver detailing. There are a couple of waxed affairs and a very subtle and subtly branded Harley-Davidson one.

Of the Gore-Tex lined ones, they’re both black and I’ve long ago lost the thermal liners. They’re probably here in my office. Then again the solution to finding world peace as well as this weeks lotto numbers could be here in my ‘creative space’ and no one would be able to find those either. When I run them during the summer I open all the vents and then close them again in the winter. The two that I have are both filthy from wearing them on Irish roads in the rain. I’m afraid to wash them as I’m sure that it’ll ruin the waterproof membrane.

No airflow, no getting lucky later...

The leather ones look cool, but they’re heavy. This isn’t a problem until I’m off the bike. On a sunny day I turn into a sweaty mess quite quickly. This doesn’t add, in anyway whatsoever, to my attractability at the local coffee shop.  

Then there’s the armoured shirt. There are a range to choose from and they’re made by Knox clothing. Rather cleverly they’re simply a mechanism to hold the armour in place and keep it there if it’s needed. This allows the shirt to be made from a mesh rather than a traditional ‘solid’ fabric. This means that it weighs next to nothing and since it’s worn next to the skin, or t-shirt, it can be worn under anything that I choose. That’s a tartan shirt when I’m on something American, a hoodie when I’m on a scooter and wax jacket when I’m on an XSR 900 or a similar and looking cool and effortless. I wear it on its own when riding trails on my new Aprilia Toureg 660. Better still, I can wear the Knox thermal over jacket as well as the independent hydro-phobic and pocket rich jacket that looks like anything but a motorccyle jacket.

He ain't heavy...

When I’ve fallen off the Aprilia or sweated out a few gallons of salty nastiness I simply take out the armour and throw it into the washing machine.

The armour is very interesting. The stuff is Knox’s Microlock kit. This means that it’s light and flexible unless it hits something hard when its structure locks and it stiffens, absorbs the shock, and protects the rider. In its resting state it’s so light and flexible that it can be taken out and replaced in the garment with such ease that even I can do it. That’s saying a lot as I could break water.

Knox’s new armour is now thinner than before. It’s therefore lighter, yet still has that coveted AA rating. The best part is that there’s no jacket required, unless you want one…

When it’s snowing or raining, the traditional waterproof suit is my go-to. For the rest of the year I’m walking past the selection and putting on my armoured shirt with something classy on over it. See www. for more details and more of the range.


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