Thanks to relentless media imagery, bikers have been programmed to believe they're a tough, hardy bunch. But we're among friends now, so let's just drop the act. Most of us have been caught unprepared in wintry weather, and it made us whimper enough that we ran to procure a proper pair of mitts -- once we regained the feeling in our fingers, of course. Hands take a beating in any season, but they're especially susceptible to the harsh conditions in the winter.
When temperatures drop, your extremities tend to freeze up first, potentially hampering your operation of the motorcycle's controls. But it's essential that winter motorcycle gloves keep you warm without sacrificing dexterity; thankfully, there are plenty of qualified choices available in this cold, cruel world. The Lowdown You're looking primarily to keep your hands warm, so simply remember that cold is really just the loss of heat.
To help trap heat, look for a thin, efficient lining (like Thinsulate) that covers the whole hand, especially the fingertips and between the fingers. Keeping the hands dry also keeps them warm. Did you know a human hand sweats approximately two teaspoons of water in an hour of moderate activity? Losing just one teaspoon can steal enough heat to drop skin temperature by 10 degrees. A waterproof/breathable membrane (such as Gore-Tex) will keep the elements out and usher sweat away from the hand, so there's no convective heat loss.
Nylon/ leather shells with synthetic insulation combined with this waterproof/ breathable layer are your best all-around solution. But perhaps the most important issue for winter gloves is dexterity. Your digits should always be left to move freely without binding and reducing circulation. If the mitts are too snug, get the next size up. Look into options with a thinly insulated palm, which will maximize throttle and lever feel.
Winter gloves should be designed to protect against impact, too. The choice between leather and textile often boils down to personal preference -- leather feels better and offers superior impact protection, but it's usually not waterproof. Textiles are more flexible and often give better sensitivity at the controls. If you're shopping for leather, go for premium hides that are at least 1mm thick. If you go with man-made material, avoid the cheap, flyweight stuff and splurge on tightly woven synthetics.
The best gloves will have extra reinforcement in the hard-wearing crotch of the thumb and forefinger and additional layers on the palm to diffuse vibration. Look for a fastening system to keep the glove securely in place in a crash. A gauntlet will offer better coverage, too. Finally, check the construction -- if the gloves have multiple layers, they can slip and bind if not assembled correctly, which is not only uncomfortable but also potentially dangerous.
Liners or inserts should be firmly anchored so they won't shift, bunch or pull out. The Test We asked the following manufacturers to provide us with a comfortable, well-rounded winter glove. Some of the entries we received favor extremely cold conditions, others are better suited for cool situations and still others are tailored more for comfort. We wore them for 30-minute stints at 60 mph through the Sierra Nevada mountains, where the approximate ambient temperature was 45 degrees.
Here's how they fared. ALPINESTARS STORM GORE-TEX GLOVES: $60, Nylon Construction An appealing mix of technology and design, the Storm gloves combine features designed to humble Mother Nature, including a Gore-Tex membrane and Thinsulate insulation. This textile entry features a water-resistant nylon outer shell with Kevlar reinforcements for impact protection and a reinforced, tear-resistant palm and fingers.
A strap across the inside wrist secures with hook-and-loop material, and the medium-length elastic gauntlet offers good coverage -- and cinches tight with a drawstring. Added nonslip material gives you traction while pulling on the gloves, and a foam insert pads the knuckles. Two-tone reflective piping across the top offers conspicuity at night. The Storms are available in black, blue and red. **Cheers: **Flexible and easy to put on.
Nice gauntlet design and functional palm padding. **Jeers: **Baggier than we'd like; the lightweight insulation is better suited for fall or wet-weather riding. BELSTAFF STRATUS GLOVES: $65, Hybrid Construction The hybrid construction of the Stratus gloves -- 500-denier Cordura outer with a solid leather palm -- is top-notch. Warmth comes courtesy of medium-grade Thinsulate lining, and an internal waterproof and breathable Hipora membrane keeps digits dry.
Reflective trim adorns the wrist and top of the hand, and a Kevlar insert on the palm gives you extra impact protection. Grippy material positioned between the thumb and forefinger prevents slippage at the controls. Attractive leather reinforcements and padding on the knuckles and fingers serve double duty, with foam on the wrist to dampen vibrations. A top strap adjusts around the wrist, and a wider strap cinches the cuff.
In black only. **Cheers: **Great fit, good pliability, strong reflectivity; grip material on fingers works well. Adequate warmth for short rides. **Jeers: **Gauntlet is shorter than we'd like; not enough to tuck in entire jacket cuff. BMW GORE-TEX WINTER GLOVES: $119, Nylon Construction As you'd expect, the BMW mitts have high-tech ingredients, such as medium-grade Thinsulate to trap warmth and Gore-Tex for waterproofness and breathability.
The primarily Cordura nylon construction boasts leather reinforcements in the palm and fingers and a double layer of leather on the inside of the thumb and index finger. Foam padding at the knuckles and heel of the palm dampens vibrations. An elastic stretch panel at the top of the wrist is covered with an adjustable strap. A short cuff (one of the shortest here) drops slightly below the wrist, cinching at the end with a drawstring.
A reflective stripe on each cuff adds a safety component, and suedelike material on the outer index fingers allows you to dab moisture off your visor. They come in solid black only. **Cheers: **Slim design allows easy fit around controls; well-placed grip material on fingertips. Good flexibility, acceptable warmth. **Jeers: **Even allowing for the high-tech stuff, they're pricey. We wish the cuffs opened wider and were longer.
FIRSTGEAR WINTER TEK GLOVES: $82, Leather Construction The Winter Tek glove has premium leather with a breathable, waterproof Hipora insert and added Thinsulate thermal insulation to give you the best of both worlds. The knuckles and palm are padded with double leather in articulating panels. The supple, all-leather glove felt soft the instant we put it on. There is a hook-and-loop cuff closure that snugs the short gauntlet at the bottom.
Interestingly, the enclosed literature claims there's a faceshield wiper on the right finger, but we didn't see one. The Winter Tek is available in black only. **Cheers: **Supple leather with solid construction; great padding and nice grip. **Jeers: **Leather is too soft, has baggy fit; 40g Thinsulate is too light for real winter riding. Minimal reflectivity, no wrist strap. HARLEY-DAVIDSON COLD WEATHER GAUNTLET GLOVES: $80, Leather Construction We imagine Commodore Perry wore these kinds of things on his North Pole assault -- they have the ultralong gauntlets that go up to your forearms.
These gloves are made completely of premium, drum-dyed leather, with a heavy-duty 150g Thinsulate lining and an insert of water-repellent Aqua-Tex in case any liquid should sneak past the beefy hide. A soft, breathable nylon lining wicks away moisture inside. Two adjustable leather straps at each cuff adjust the gauntlets and are embroidered with the Harley logo. **Cheers: **Excellent gauntlet coverage; comfortable lining and solid leather construction.
If you're going to Alaska, pack a pair. These are the warmest gloves here. **Jeers: **They're bulky; no wrist strap. Control feel can be vague. HELD NARVIK GORE-TEX WINTER GLOVES: $100, Hybrid Construction This serious winter touring glove features a Gore-Tex waterproof and windproof membrane and medium-heavy-grade Thinsulate for good cold/wet-weather comfort. It's constructed of beefy Cordura with premium cowhide reinforcements all over the palm, fingers and knuckles.
A padded palm heel softens vibration to the hand, a leather strap secures around the wrist and a leather tab adjusts the gauntlet. There's a visor squeegee on the left index finger, and there are reflective, padded panels on the side of each gauntlet. Available in black from the company's exclusive U.S. distributor, Intersport Fashions West. **Cheers: **Very warm. Attractive leather, superior retention system, good gauntlet design.
**Jeers: **Only one reflective patch. Requires break-in, thanks to dense material construction. Only adequate control feel. Pricey. JOE ROCKET RADIANT 2.0 GLOVES: $70, Leather Construction These mostly cowhide gloves offer up a Dry Tech waterproof/breathable lining and precurved fingers for an easy fit and medium-grade 70g Thinsulate for warmth. A reinforced gel palm dampens handlebar vibrations, and there's a shield wiper on each thumb.
High-density rubber on the knuckles gives you padding, and a bungee cord on the nylon cuff makes adjustments easy. The gauntlet cuff is nice and long, and since it's all nylon, it's easy to rearrange around your sleeve. A leather strap adjusts around the top of the wrist, too. **Cheers: **Gauntlet design with integrated rain gutter. Very pliable and adequately warm for our 30-minute jaunt. **Jeers: **Finger and thumb design is baggy; two dots provide the only reflectivity.
OLYMPIA ULTIMA 1 GLOVES: $75, Leather Construction You feel the premium, drum-dyed cowhide first, but the Ultima gloves also contain a waterproof/breathable Aqua-Tex insert and high-grade 100g Thinsulate insulation with a soft Hydrofil lining that wicks away perspiration. The knuckles have tremendous padding with raised fingers and a padded cuff, and the palm and forefinger have added reinforcements.
Two hook-and-loop straps secure the fit, one at the wrist and the other at the cuff. Precurved, boxed fingers fit comfortably. The Ultima comes in black only. **Cheers: **Snug, but not tight; slim finger design offers good dexterity. Excellent padding, good warmth. **Jeers: **Very dark, with no reflective surfaces at all. ORINA STYLE 118 GLOVES: $54, Hybrid Construction This dark-horse entry, from German company Orina, contains Thermolite -- which is said to be four times warmer than Thinsulate.
The Orina gloves also have an additional polar fleece lining, and the entire underside is covered with leather -- with extra reinforcement on the palm and inner thumb. A top strap secures around the wrist, and they have a cool zipper for the long gauntlet cuff. There's a waterproof membrane inside for added protection. Imported by the company's U.S. distributor, Adventure Motorcycle Gear. **Cheers: **Best value here.
Excellent warmth with good construction. **Jeers: **Slightly bulky; cuff doesn't cinch tightly. No reflective surfaces. Roadgear Boss Gloves: $90, Hybrid Construction The Roadgear Boss mixes a tough nylon outer with premium leather for a fine protective shell. Medium-grade Thinsulate adds insulation without bulk, and the hybrid leather/nylon construction is fully breathable and waterproof thanks to a Hipora insert.
Double-leather-reinforced palms and finger/thumb area provide extra protection, as does reflective padding atop the knuckles. The Boss offers a tailored fit and has a medium-length cuff that cinches tightly with a wide hook-and-loop strap. Another belted strap secures the wrist, and reflective tape and piping along the cuff add more conspicuity. Looks sharp, too. Available in black only. **Cheers: **Fine cool-weather glove; terrific fit with good dexterity.
Superior conspicuity and good gauntlet coverage. **Jeers: **Not warm below 45 degrees. TEKNIC THUNDER GLOVES: $60, Leather Construction Teknic's gladiator-grade mitts have precurved fingers for a good fit and are constructed with top-quality cowhide and a leather palm for superior abrasion resistance. Inside is a 100-percent-breathable Powerskin membrane, with superior Thermolite insulation for warmth.
A rubber squeegee on the lower forefinger of each glove allows you to wipe your helmet visor. A layer of suede covers the pinkie-finger seam, and a beefy, multi-adjustable cuff system seals out the weather while providing abrasion resistance -- this is probably the best-protected cuff here. There are additional reinforcements and padding in the palm. A wrist strap secures it. **Cheers: **Good value, sufficient warmth for cool weather.
Superior gauntlet protection and padding. **Jeers: **Somewhat bulky and stiff; virtually no reflective materials. Need significant break-in; closures a chore to operate. TOUR MASTER POLAR-TEX COLD WEATHER GLOVES: $50, Nylon Construction Tour Master reinforces the bulletproof 1000- and 500-denier Cordura nylon construction with a leather palm and warm 100g Thinsulate Flex insulation (stretchier than regular Thinsulate) on the Polar-Tex.
These gloves have lengthy gauntlets with a well-designed zipper adjustment that bellows open to accept bulky sleeves. A Porvair liner makes them waterproof and breathable, and a top wrist adjustment with big rubber grips is easy to operate. Knuckle and finger flex panels allow a wide range of movement, and precurved fingers provide comfort. Foam padding on the palm lessens the shakes, and a reflective logo on the cuff provides conspicuity.
The suedelike material on the index finger acts as a shield wiper. The Polar Tex is available in black, black/blue and black/red. **Cheers: **Excellent value, good warmth, terrific pliability. Go for the two-tone color option. **Jeers: **Gauntlet doesn't cinch and zipper is small, making it hard to operate; palm padding lessens control feel. Vanson Leathers Lineman Gloves: $102, Leather Construction The Vanson Leathers glove offers the sweetest, most decadent leather construction in the bunch.
You could use these as a lovey. The tanned cowhide has lightweight Thinsulate lining, and the fingers are precurved on a heated form and shaped for ease of natural finger movement. There's an adjustable leather wrist strap with a hook-and-loop closure, and an extra-long gauntlet provides good coverage. **Cheers: **They're oh-so-silky-smooth. Superior stitching and construction mean you won't want to take them off.
Excellent control feel. **Jeers: **No waterproof features, no padding, no reflectivity. And yikes, they're pricey... RESOURCES(Click on web addresses to see sites) Alpinestars, (310) 891-0222, www.alpinestars.com Belstaff North America, (714) 901-1167, www.belstaff.com BMW of North America, (866) 426-9432, www.bmwmotorcycles.com Firstgear/Intersport Fashions West, (800) 416-8255, www.intersportfashions.
com Harley-Davidson, (800) LUV-2-RIDE, www.harley-davidson.com Held U.S.A., (888) 311-5399 x321, www.held-usa.com Joe Rocket, (800) 635-6103, www.joerocket.com Olympia Sports, (800) 645-6124, www.olympiagloves.com Orina, Available through Adventure Motorcycle Gear, (800) 217-3526, www.adventuremotogear.com Roadgear, Inc., (800) 854-4327, www.roadgear.com Teknic, (616) 866-3722, www.teknicgear.com Tour Master, (800) 455-2552, www.
tourmaster.com Vanson Leathers, (508) 678-2000, www.vansonleathers.com For additional evaluations of, comparisons of, and shopping advice for motorcycle gear and accessories, see the Accessories and Gear section of MotorcycleCruiser.com.See Also: Brio Sunday Brunch
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You will truly appreciate quality, heated motorcycle gloves when you’ve ridden without them for any kind of distance and then try them for the first time. Here, we look at the best winter motorcycle gloves, specifically heated gloves. Heated motorcycle gloves provide you with extra warmth, comfort and protection while riding during the winter. They will help keep your hands more secure on the handlebars.
And the best motorcycle gloves for winter also come with padding materials that not only insulate your hands, but also give you improved grip in cold weather conditions. They create heat that you will feel as soon as you put on the gloves. They are powered by either a battery or a 12V source on the bike, and with some models you can dial down the heat if it’s too much for the conditions. For more of our motorcycle gear recommendations, have a look through these other Outside Pursuits guide links: Helmets, Bluetooth Helmets, Boots and Rain Gear.
Quick Answer: The 5 Best Winter Motorcycle Gloves Gerbing Men’s T5 Heated Hybrid Gloves Joe Rocket Rocket Burner Heated Gloves VentureHeat 12V Heated Carbon Fiber Knuckle Motorcycle Gloves Volt Motorcycle Heated Gloves FirstGear Rider Men’s Warm and Safe Heated Motorcycle Gloves We will review the top performers in the industry and then give you the background information you need to make a wise purchase decision in the Buyers’s Guide for Heated Motorcycle Gloves.
Winter Motorcycle Gloves Reviews #1 Gerbing Men’s T5 Heated Hybrid Gloves These cold weather motorcycle gloves from Gerbing run on 12-volt hybrid battery power. The battery can be powered up by the engine on the motorcycle among other ports. It produces a comfortable surface where your hands will stay warm for up to ten hours after the initial charge. The soft texture inside the gloves gives off a broken-in fit that is comfortable and easy to wear.
The cuff materials around the wrists offer a secure fit that will not slip off. Available in five sizes: S, M, L, XL, XXL Fingers have shell parts to add extra protection Leather material resists moisture No moisture buildup inside the gloves while wearing them Insulated #2 Joe Rocket Rocket Burner Heated Gloves Available in large and extra-large sizes, the Rocket Burner winter motorcycle gloves use a three-stage heat setting that works for up to four hours at a time.
It produces different levels of heat. A single port works for both of the lithium-ion batteries that charge up the gloves. [embedded content] The Full-Flex wrist feature uses a better layout where you can move your wrist around and the glove will stay cuffed. This is right above the main button you press to trigger the heating function on the glove or to adjust the intensity of that heat. Pre-curved fingers Nylon outside body Synthetic palm offers flexibility Cuff closure is fully adjustable Conductive surfaces on the finger tips allow for quick access to touchscreens #3 VentureHeat 12V Heated Carbon Fiber Knuckle Motorcycle Gloves The waterproof body of this cold weather motorcycle gear includes carbon fiber knuckles for added protection without adding too much weight.
The heating zones are placed around the perimeter of the hand to improve upon how heat moves along your hand. [embedded content] The heat produced by the best waterproof motorcycle gloves moves upward from the knuckles to the fingers. A temperature controller is included inside the gloves to keep them active without being too hot. Available in six sizes including XXX-large Slim fingertips allow you to handle touchscreens Operates off of a 12-volt battery on your bike Weighs around a pound #4 Volt Motorcycle Heated Gloves Volt makes these warm battery heated motorcycle gloves in five sizes.
Full grain leather is included all the way around the gloves. A 12-volt battery heats up the gloves while plugging into your motorcycle’s power source quickly. Three heat settings are utilized with buttons that guide you through each option. The synthetic leather palm adds an extra bit of gripping power onto the gloves. This lets you keep your grip on the handle bars without them slipping off. Cuff is adjustable with Velcro strap Heat control button is easy to access Cowhide leather surface offers light weight Nylon cuff surface #5 FirstGear Rider Men’s Warm and Safe Heated Street Bike Racing Motorcycle Gloves FirstGear makes these winter motorcycle gloves with top grain leather.
The fingers are slightly pre-curved to fit their natural shapes. About 15 watts of output are included on each glove. These fit well onto most outlets to generate heat that keeps your hands comfortable. This particularly fits into the power outlet on your motorcycle. The heat that is produced goes well around all parts of your hand. In addition to the heated fingers and thumb, the gloves also come with heated palms.
The Thinsulate insulation feature keeps the heat generated inside the gloves, as do all of the best motorcycle heated gloves, by establishing a strong membrane surrounding thick protective materials. Waterproof membrane Small ports offer easy connection Black leather is flexible Cuffs on the ends are fully adjustable How To Choose the Best Winter Motorcycle Gloves As you look for the best winter motorcycle gloves, you have to take a look at what is available on today’s market.
The options for warm motorcycle gloves are plentiful but the ways how they work can vary. Some gloves use batteries while others work with alternative power sources. They may also come with rigid or flexible surfaces around their bodies. What Are The Gloves Made Out Of? When you’re looking for the best cold weather motorcycle gloves pay attention to what your gloves are made of when ordering them.
Full grain leather is often utilized because it is flexible, sturdy and insulates well while also offering an outstanding look. Nylon is also applied as it is lighter in weight and offers waterproof and windproof properties. Waterproof motorcycle gloves are a prerequisite to staying warm. All of the gloves in our review are made of a waterproof leather or a waterproof synthetic material / material blend.
Carbon fiber is used in some motorcycle gloves. This is a solid surface that is also lightweight and produces a rigid protective body. Carbon fiber is more likely to be found around the knuckles and top parts of the palms in the best winter motorcycle gloves. How Are They Powered? Most all heated gloves motorcycle use one of two power sources. First, you could use an option that features rechargeable batteries.
These would last for hours at a time but it might take longer for the batteries to actually charge up. Second, you can use a 12-volt connector on your gloves. Such a connector will link to the power source on your motorcycle. This would require you to secure the plug inside just to keep the heated gloves warm. The motorcycle winter gloves would not run out of heat so long as the power for the motorcycle is still running.
How Does the Heat Move? The heat produced by motorcycle heated gloves should move well around your hand. It should move through the fingers and thumb as well as the top parts of your hands. Gloves that also support your palms can be useful too. Can You Control the Heat? Some motorcycle heated gloves let you adjust the heat level by using a button or other control feature. That button might be near an outlet that you plug into.
It could also be right on the glove although this would be more likely if you had a battery-operated set of gloves. See How They Handle Wind and Water A windproof and waterproof membrane are needed for keeping your fingers protected. Such a membrane works by creating a full sealant over your hands. It often comes with a carbon fiber body although nylon or a synthetic compound like 3M Thinsulate could be added as well.
What About Weight? The best heated motorcycle gloves are easy to wear without adding too much heat. Lightweight gloves can weigh around one to two pounds on average. Some heavier models would be about three pounds in weight. The heaviest models tend to be ones that use rechargeable batteries. Fastener Points Check on how the fasteners on your motorbike winter gloves of interest work. The fasteners include cuffs for the wrist for the most part.
A buckle or strap that you can tighten around the middle part of your hand could also be utilized to add an extra fit around the surface. How Thick Are the Fingers? The fingers on your heated motorbike gloves should be checked carefully. The problem with some gloves is that they are too thick and keep your fingers from being flexible.Look for something that offers broken-in fingers or at least a thinner design to create a more flexible arrangement that is easy to wear.
Parts of your fingers should be made with touchscreen pads. Such pads include durable surfaces that grip onto a screen with ease. This is critical when you are trying to contact someone with a phone and you don’t want to take your winter riding gloves off. What About Color and Size? Most winter motorcycle gloves are made in numerous sizes. These include sizes for small and large hands alike although you are more likely to find extra-large gloves than small ones.
These are typically designed with men in mind although they can also be used by women if fastened well enough. Most of these gloves are black as they are easier to see in the daytime and offer a more striking look. Some other colors may be available but they are often hard to find. Some reflective items may be added to the sides or ends of your gloves to make them easier to spot in foggy or dark conditions.
I hope this guide was helpful in picking the best winter motorcycle gloves to fit your needs. If you want to comment or recommend a pair of gloves I didn’t include, please use my contact form to get in touch. Have fun and be safe out there! Notice: Outside Pursuits is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees sold through by advertising and linking to Amazon.
com. Amazon offers a small commission on products sold through their affiliate links. Each of your purchases via our Amazon affiliate links supports our efforts to bring you the best possible product reviews at no additional cost to you. We appreciate your support here at OutsidePursuits.com