Why Kevlar? Q and A with Draggin Jeans’ Grant Mackintosh

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Draggin has been using genuine DuPont™ Kevlar® in its products since it first began production of its jeans back in 1997. Despite there being a number of alternative fabrics available nowadays, the company sees absolutely no reason to use anything else.

For more than 50 years, DuPont’s Kevlar has been the number one choice for strength and safety in a variety of applications across a broad range of industries. The company’s heritage and experience in the field is unrivalled, giving its customers total peace of mind and complete assurance that the product does exactly what it’s designed to do.

Well known for its use in military and law enforcement protective clothing, Kevlar is a key component in body armour and flak jackets helping to protect personnel from ballistic projectiles, explosive fragmentation and other combat hazards. Five times stronger than steel on an equal-weight basis, it offers superior protection, yet is lightweight and comfortable enough to help improve mobility and reduce fatigue in the field.

Given its effectiveness in such extreme situations, Kevlar’s use in motorcycle apparel was a natural progression and it was Draggin’s Grant Mackintosh who pioneered its use in jeans. Given his many years of experience in the field, Grant is uniquely placed to answer questions that often come up regarding the use of Kevlar in protective motorcycle wear. In the following text he attempts to address these.

Q: Any jeans advertised as made with Kevlar are going to protect me, right?

“Not necessarily,” says Grant. “Unfortunately there are some poor imitators out there using the Kevlar name for a fibre that is absolutely not made by DuPont. We have developed our own lining, while many others just call up the factories in the Far East and ask for Kevlar, but they can’t guarantee what they are getting. Worryingly, some of them just use yellow cotton while others are actually flammable. The only way to be sure is if they have the DuPont logo on the label. I’m proud to say that we were the first motorcycle jeans manufacturer to pass strict DuPont criteria to attain a licence agreement and we were also the world’s first DuPont Preferred Licensee for motorcycle garments.”

Q: I was told that during a slide, Kevlar jeans can get very hot and either burn or melt onto the skin. Is this true?

“DuPont Kevlar has no melting point, so there is zero chance of it melting onto the skin,” explains Grant. “As far as heat goes, perhaps in some brands of riding jeans there may be an issue with heat transfer – it depends on the fabric and whether a liner is incorporated. Our knitted fabric, for example, produces a soft material in which the loop of the fabric faces the road. This is more than twice as effective at dissipating heat and resisting abrasion as a flat weave and also results in faster deceleration. Add to that an internal lining and you’ve got all the protection you’ll need from both heat and abrasion.”

Q: I read on the internet that Kevlar degrades through hydrolysis. Does that mean I can’t wash my jeans?
“This is yet another unsubstantiated claim,” says Grant. He goes on to explain, “DuPont itself says that fabrics engineered with Kevlar can easily be washed at high temperatures and tumble dried. In its Kevlar technical booklet it clearly states that there is no degradation to performance of the material due to water exposure – tests have even been carried out where Kevlar was submerged in ocean water for 12 months and no degradation occurred.”

Q: It’s a fact that UV degrades Kevlar. That’s surely bad news for my jeans?

“Everything is susceptible to degradation from UV exposure,” says Grant. “House bricks, car paint, and yes, Kevlar, but that doesn’t mean your jeans are going to be useless after a summer’s riding. I don’t know about other brands of motorcycle jeans that use, say, Vectran for instance, which is well known to have very low UV resistance, but from evidence we’ve collected so far on our own products we’ve been really surprised by what we’ve found. We recently had a pair of 11 year old Draggin jeans returned to us for data collection after they protected the rider in a crash. The incredible thing is that they actually tested 30% better than when new and had most certainly been washed, worn with bent knees, rained on, sweated in and worn in the summer sun in Australia for over a decade,” he reveals. “It’s really exciting and with our lab tests we are seeing similar improvements in performance with intense washing, drying and retesting. We continue to have fun figuring out and pushing the science behind it!”

FIND OUT MORE

Vision On for Autumn

hi_viz_waistcoat_01lrAs the autumn nights draw in and weather conditions deteriorate, motorcyclists can often find themselves riding in poor visibility.
The advice from Think! – the Department for Transport road safety campaign – is crystal clear; “Wear bright or fluorescent gear during the day and reflective gear at night”.
Weise® designed the Vision waistcoat specifically for motorcycle & scooter riders.
It is made from 75 Denier polyester and Lycra® so that it fits snugly over bike clothing and won’t flap about in the wind.
Its bright neon yellow colour is enhanced by reflective stripes to front and back and there is a useful ID pocket for driving licence or emergency contact details.
The Weise Vision is washable, so it can be kept bright and fresh, and comes in sizes S-5XL for a perfect fit over motorcycle clothing.

More details here.

Spirit of Weise

New for 2016 – Weise® Spirit Leather jacket
Made from tough yet flexible natural-milled cowhide and with CE-approved armour throughout, including at the back, the new Weise® Spirit leather jacket blends timeless styling with modern levels of comfort & impact protection.

Classic details feature throughout, adding to the feel of traditional quality. Adjustable fastenings at the base of jacket are secured with buckles, and the collar has a soft lining for added comfort, and can be tightened or loosened using poppers.

The cuffs have a zipped closure, which is fastened with poppers. All zips are vintage-style metal by YKK® and there is padded leather detailing on the shoulders and elbows to complete the classic look.

With three outer pockets and internal pockets, too, there are plenty of places to carry your phone, wallet and keys,

The Spirit is available in men’s chest sizes 40″-50″.

Call The Key Collection on 0117 971 9200 or click HERE for details.

New Duchinni D705 Syncro Helmet

Duchinni’s entry-level D705 helmet is now available in a choice of four striking graphics that give it an appearance to match the premium brands.
The D705 Syncro has a strong ABS/fibre composite outer shell that is certified to the latest ECE22.05 safety standard. Its aerodynamic design creates a cleaner airflow over the helmet, which keeps the head more stable and eases strain on the neck at higher speeds. UV protection shields the shell and the colours from the effects of direct sunlight.

Vents to the top and chin bar, linked to an exhaust vent at the rear by advanced channelling through the EPS liner, keep the head cool as the temperature rises. The high quality textile lining is also fully removable and washable, so it can be kept fresh and bacteria-free.

The Syncro also has a double curvature visor with an anti-scratch coating, plus a breath-deflector to keep it fog-free, and is fastened by an adjustable micrometric quick-release buckle

Duchinni’s D705 Syncro comes in a choice of Black/Neon, Black/Orange, Black/White & Black/Gun. It is available in sizes XS-XL, (and up to XXL in Black/Gun).

Click HERE for details

Buffalo kit for kids

Buffalo’s new range of youth textile clothing is designed for budding bikers.

At less than £130 for the complete set – jacket, trousers and gloves – and with sleeves and legs that can be adjusted as the wearer grows, it’s a very cost-effective way to ensure younger passengers are properly kitted out when they go for a ride.

buffalo ranger jkt youth neon LRThe Ranger is a waterproof textile jacket with vents front and rear and a removable thermal liner, so it’s easy to adapt for the weather conditions. CE-approved armour is fitted at the shoulders and elbows and there are adjustable Velcro® straps at the cuffs, upper and lower arms and waist, for a snug fit. Reflective detailing is included for increased visibility and there are also external and internal pockets. As the wearer grows, the sleeves can be adjusted for length by means of an expansion zip on the upper arm. Retailing at £59.99 including VAT, the Ranger comes in sizes XS (6-7 years) to XL (13-14 years) in a choice of either Black or Black/Neon Yellow.

imola_LRMatching Imola textile trousers are also waterproof with Thermomix® insulation and a removable quilted lining. CE-approved armour is fitted at the knees, and the legs can be adjusted for length using a similar system to the jacket. SRP is £46.99 and sizes range from XS (6-7 years) to XL (13-14 years).

tracker_LRTracker Gloves complete the package. Made from a combination of suede leather and textile fabric with a twin overlay to the knuckles and palm, they are waterproof, windproof and breathable. The Tracker has a thermal lining and features an adjustable Velcro®-retained wrist strap for a secure fit, together with a pull cord at the cuff to help seal out the elements. Retailing for £18.99, they come in junior sizes S – L in Black, Red and Blue.

Click here for details on the complete range of Buffalo motorcycle clothing and accessories

Ride out in style with Weise Ascot jacket

AscotLRNew to the Weise® collection, the Ascot ladies textile jacket has the style of high street fashion, with the features and protection needed for riding the high road.
Named after the famous race course, the Ascot takes its styling cues from quilted jackets worn by horse riders, with a short and tailored fit.
Made from 190 Denier quilted nylon, the Ascot feels soft and comfortable for all-day wear both on and off the bike.
CE-approved armour is fitted to pockets at the shoulders, elbow and back, providing impact protection and peace of mind.
Weise also include a removable, fleece-backed, 80-gram quilted lining, which enables the wearer to use the Ascot in the wide variety of temperatures experienced in the UK.
Three external pockets, plus two more inside, provide plenty of carrying space for essential items such as keys, phone and credit cards.
High quality YKK® gold-coloured zips add a stylish finishing touch.
The Ascot comes in classic black, in sizes S – 2XL (UK 10-18).

Click HERE for details

Aim for the Horizon with Buffalo

Buffalo horizon Jkt 3LRNew from Buffalo, the Horizon is a feature-packed, four-season textile jacket that is adaptable to a variety of weather conditions.

The tough 600-denier outer shell is reinforced with leather panels over the shoulders and CE-approved armour is fitted at the shoulders and elbows.

Inside is a windproof, waterproof and breathable drop liner, which can be removed in warm & dry conditions to allow greater air flow.

A removable thermal quilted liner helps to insulate on colder days, and an adjustable waist belt and Velcro® straps on the arms allow the wearer to achieve a draught-free fit. There is also a trouser-connection zip, to prevent the Horizon ‘riding up’ and allowing cold air in.

When the temperature rises, vents at the chest and back allow cool air in and let hot air escape. These can be used independently, or together, to give the best combination for the conditions and handy 2-way zips on the cuffs can be opened for additional ventilation.

Stretch panels on the arms and sides of the jacket aid flexibility and freedom of movement., keeping riders comfortable, even on long days in the saddle.

Topping off the extensive specification are zipped pockets, both inside and out, as well as a handy large rear map pocket – plenty of places to store all those travel essentials that need to be kept close to hand.

The Buffalo Horizon comes in sizes S – 5XL, in black with red and white highlights.

For details on the Horizon CLICK HERE

Draggin go back to black

TOGETHER.jpg564165802896cDraggin’s slim-fit Twista riding jeans are now available in black, in sizes to fit both men and women.

Twista jeans have a seamless design – with no visible panels or external stitching from the protection inside – which gives the appearance of regular fashion jeans. Now in black, they offer sleek versatility and smarter appearance than traditional blue jeans.

Made from stretch denim, for comfort and freedom of movement on and off the bike, the mid-rise waist is tailored for rider coverage in the saddle and the straight leg is designed to fit over riding boots.

On the inside, Draggin’s unique protective lining is secured with heavy-duty triple stitching in key impact areas. Knitted from a combination of DuPont™ Kevlar® and Dyneema® – the world’s strongest fibre – it is highly abrasion resistant, whilst being soft, breathable and non-allergenic.

Draggin is the first manufacturer of motorcycle jeans in the world to be officially licensed to use DuPont™ Kevlar® aramid fibres. Originally developed by DuPont™ in 1965, Kevlar® aramid fibre is lightweight and extraordinarily strong, with five times the strength of steel on an equal-weight basis.

For added impact protection, Draggin Dffuse CE protectors can be fitted into internal pockets on the knees, and are included free with every pair.

Exclusively distributed in the UK by The Key Collection, Draggin Twista jeans are available in men’s waist size 28 to 44 inches and women’s sizes 8-18.

Legendary protection from Weise gloves

Weise® have added two gloves to their range, both of which are CE-approved.

Named after the legendary Roman twins, Romulus and Remus join the handful of riding gloves that have passed the stringent testing for EN13594:2014 – “Protective gloves for motorcycle riders”.

Gloves are tested for abrasion-resistance, restraint (to assess the likelihood of the glove coming off the rider’s hand during an accident) and integrity (measuring the strength of seams or joints). Dexterity is also appraised, to ensure that the rider can still operate controls easily while wearing them, and there is even a durability test.

In addition, both Romulus and Remus pass the optional impact protection test for knuckle armour, as denoted by KP on the label.

weise romulus CE glv 1LRDesigned with the touring rider in mind, Romulus are made from tough, yet supple, full-grain leather, and are unlined to maximise feel and feedback through the handlebars. Twin leather overlay on the palms provides extra abrasion protection and, to guard against impact, there is carbon shell armour on the fingers, thumbs and knuckles. Both the cuffs and wrist are secured with Velcro for a snug fit and to help keep the gloves firmly in place in the event of a slide. Romulus come in black, sizes S-3XL.

weise remus CE glove 1LRThe short-cuff Remus are as equally at home on a sports or naked bike as they are on a retro, cruiser or scooter. Like the Romulus, they’re full grain leather, which is perforated on the back of the hand and thumb to let in the cool air and allow heat and perspiration to escape. The short cuff also fits comfortably under the wrist-fastenings of most riding jackets. TPU reinforcements to knuckles, fingers and thumb, plus a twin leather overlay on the palm, provide all-round protection for the hand and peace of mind for the rider. The Velcro-retained strap to the cuff makes sure the protection stays where it’s needed. Weise Remus also come in black, sizes S-3XL.

CLASSIC BUFFALO BIKE LEATHERS ARE BACK

Leather jackets and jeans make a welcome return to the Buffalo range for 2016, along with a matching waistcoat. Each item in the range is made from natural milled leather, which is soft and flexible, yet retains the inherent strength of the hide.   Styled for a timeless appearance, with subtle touches like vintage-style zips and stud fasteners, Buffalo leathers will look equally at home on a modern retro-style motorcycle or a classic machine.

Buffalo navigator jkt 1LRThe Navigator jacket has removable CE-approved armour to shoulders and elbows and a detachable thermal quilted liner. There are two external zipped pockets and, on the inside, another zipped pocket, plus a mobile phone pocket. The Buffalo Navigator comes in chest sizes 40”-50”.

buffalo classic waistcoat 1LRAvailable in matching sizes, the Classic waistcoat has five vintage-styled stud fasteners down the chest, with inner pockets for a wallet and mobile ’phone.

buffalo classic jeans 2LRDesigned with a straight leg and tailored for ease of movement, the Classic jeans will sit inside or outside riding boots, whichever the rider prefers. Popper fasteners secure the waist and there are five pockets, offering plenty of places to stash the journey’s essentials. Produced with seamless cuffs at the bottom of the leg, the Classic jeans are ready for alteration if required. Available in 30”-42” waist and ladies sizes 10-18.