Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Dainese Ducati Strada Tour GT jacket review

One of the rad things about having a whoopsie, if there is any, is apparel cover. I swear by it. Being paranoid about safety gear is one of my best features. No SQUID here. So when I slid down the road for a bit and tore the shit out of my Dainese Tech Fabric jacket I was pretty pissed to say the least. I cursed quite a bit. Then I remembered apparel cover has me, erm, covered. New jacket coming up!
After much debate and back and ribbing from Big Steve about my previous jacket - which he took great pride in paying me out about - I decided I had taken Ducati fever to new heights and needed to calm down a wee bit. So I decided that I would be forking out the extra dosh to upgrade to more subtle (read less blingy) Strada Tour GT jacket, which ironically is what I wanted initially but thought it was outta my reach ($1300 AUD!!), and the Ducati Corse Fabric jacket was a run out sale at the time therefore... the tight arse in me won over and I succumbed to the bling. I had to fork over the ‘gap’ and upgrade after QBE settled fairly and squarely with me on the Dainese Ducati Corse jacket, so I upgraded to this Strada Tour GT. I’m so glad I did because this could be the best jacket that ever was, or ever will be. Must be something about Gore-Tex.

 


 Gore-Tex is so much more comfortable to wear than anything else I’ve ever worn in a jacket. We’re talking about flexibility here. There is literally no movement restriction with this jacket. It feels fantastic and still has the padded bits needed to protect your skeleton. Armour on the elbows, down the back and weirdly I thought (but can appreciate) neck. In fact I found the neck brace piece to be too restrictive with my new XD4 so I took it out. I do have a couple of gripes with it, but they are so minor it’s not worth mentioning. So I will anyway. The neck strap. It requires a certain dexterity to actual use it, so if you have gloved up it’s pretty freakin difficult to do. Note to self: do up neck strap before gloving up.
 


 The neck armour. I like my neck just the way it is, so I want to wear this armour and achieve maximum neck safety thresholds but this thing digs into the back of your head, and I found it to restrict me from dipping my head over left or right shoulder, but this could be the larger style dual sport helmet I’m wearing. But that helmet is the exact (or near enough) helmet that you are supposed to ride on a Multistrada, wearing this jacket so it should work.

 Third thing: It makes me look fat. Only kidding, this isn’t possible. I will always look like the exoskeleton of a praying mantis. But because I am exactly as described it means I can’t do the neck or waist straps up far enough to make it really snug. Guess I should eat more cheeseburgers.
 

 See? Tiny little things that aren’t worth a mention but there they are nonetheless. I really like this jacket, it’s yet to have a full drenching of rain so I am not sure about it’s waterproofing as yet, I find with all of these sorts of jackets water pools in your crotch and inevitably that means your going to get a wet crack and sack. If you have those things of course. It has a winter thermal liner that has kept me warm with just a t-shirt underneath the past few weeks which is pretty good because we’ve had some sub 10 degree Melbourne mornings of late so it does the job well.
 

 All in I’m supremely happy. It still has a few Ducati emblems here and there, but it’s much more subtle and predominantly black so I don’t look like ‘that guy’ anymore.

 Thanks Steve, keep me in check won’t ya? Oh and one last thing, there should have been a Dainese sticker. I like stickers. If you are in the market for a really good all purpose all year round jacket, go see Neil B at Ducati City and tell him Dan sent ya. Until next time as always, ride naked (but wear a jacket and lid).

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