By Steve Tiedman
Last summer I bought a new Moto Guzzi V7II Stone from Mill City Motorcycles/Scooterville in Minneapolis. This was at the same time that the shop brought in their first inventory of Corazzo motorcycle jackets. Along with current model stock were some discontinued styles (which have been tweaked and brought in as new models). “Hey,” me thinks, “That Corazzo men’s model 5.0 jacket would look great with my new Guzzi!” Olive green, red and reflective silver striping, Italian styling… yeah! It looks a lot better and more stylish than my 10-year old, faded/filthy yellow 3/4 length adventure touring coat.
The Corazzo 5.0 (replaced in the lineup with the new 6.0) serves as a 3-season waist-length jacket. The 5.0/6.0 models feature 1000 Denier Cordura fabric throughout, the good stuff, along with beefy YKK zippers, and 3M reflective on the front, back, and arms for outstanding nighttime conspicuity.
Whenever I buy new motorcycling outerwear, I always bring along a few cold weather layers that I’d want to wear under the jacket, to make sure I buy the right size and that it serves the multi-season intent. In the cold, layered up and vent zippers closed, the Corazzo jacket performed very well. The sleeves offer a long zip closure and Velcro strap that works perfectly with standard gloves tucked into the jacket cuffs, or gauntlet style gloves over the sleeve cuffs. In the warm months, the combination of open collar and sleeve cuff zips, the 12-inch long armpit zipper vents, and the 6-inch long vertical shoulder blade zipper vents allow copious amount of air to flow through the jacket- nice! And the 1000 Denier Cordura is water resistant so there are no worries about summer showers, but it’s not a rain suit.
From the safety perspective, their use of high denier Cordura (denier- a unit of measure for the linear mass density of fibers; the higher the number, the greater the mass of the fiber) and removable CE-rated Knox® Armor in the shoulders, elbows and back make for a quite protective jacket for your vulnerable torso parts.
Corazzo produces men’s and women’s jackets and coats, along with other accessories. Mill City Motorcycles/Scooterville in Minneapolis, and Starr Motorcycle in North Mankato, are the Minnesota dealers of Corazzo products. See their website at www.corazzo.net.
Along with the aforementioned 10-year old coat, I have its matching pair of all-weather pants. Both of which still perform like new after about 60,000 miles, and other than rough cosmetics, they are still in great shape, functionally and structurally. But in hot, humid weather, those touring pants create sauna conditions inside of them. So, this summer I decided to up the comfort ante and invest in Kevlar mesh motorcycle pants from Motoport.
Motoport, this is top shelf stuff. If you want a garment, be it pants, jacket, or even a full suit, it is quite likely that it is going to be made to fit for you. You can order just about anything they sell from materials such as mesh Kevlar, stretch Kevlar, and Cordura.
I built a hybrid pair of pants. I specified the “Ultra II Air Mesh” Kevlar mesh for the front of the pants, and the “Ultra II Stretch” Kevlar material for the back. This was an upcha
rge over the standard Ultra II Air Mesh pants, but I wanted the more forgiving fit stretch Kevlar on the back of the pants with the ultimate in air flow across the front. Motoport’s website, motoport.com, has information comparing their different materials and construction methods, and options for water protection and insulation.
Motoport builds their garments with loads of padding, in two different pad types. I opted for the standard armor padding, the “World’s top rated, lightweight, perforated Tri-Armor that fully covers: Knee/shin and full wrap around thigh armor.” These are large pads; they cover more body surface than any other motorcycle garment pads I’ve seen. I also ordered the optional hip pads and the sacrum (tailbone) pad of the same Tri-Armor material. (Their “Quad-Armor” is an even more protective armor, available for an upcharge.)
The Motoport pants are beefy and tough, but once I had them on and went for a ride, the padding conformed to my body and the fit and weight seemed to disappear. Cooling from the mesh? Sweet! With jeans underneath, I don’t feel wind blowing through them like with cheap mesh (owned that, too), rather when I was off the bike working up a bit of sweat, after I started rolling down the road I immediately felt the cooling effect of evaporation all along my legs. Ah, finally, summer comfort! Yep, the cooling takes place even with the armor lining the pants. The perforated padding lets the air move right through.
With my Corazzo jacket and Motoport pants, I’ll be doing more mid-summer riding instead of sitting in the air conditioned house. My old gear will take care of the nasty stuff.