Kali Protectives Sarpa Body Armor and Pads

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Sarpa Body

Kali Sarpa Level 2 Body Armor: Much like the Cobra, the Sarpa Level 2 Body Armor’s most pronounced feature is its protective polycarbonate hood plates. With a dynamic mix of Thermoplastic Urethane and Nitrex foam in the protective plates, the Sarpa sets the standard for impact resilience and precise fit. The Sarpa Level 2 is also unique in the marketplace as it is designed with neck brace compatibility built-in (through removable placement pad).

User Reviews (1)

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Freeride777   Downhiller [Feb 04, 2010]

Design, quality finish, fit, movability/freedom, quality of protection is first class


Weight, price if you're on a budget

I've been testing out the Sarpa Level 2 protection this past month. Since the trails have been rideable, unusual for this time of year so far north (thanks to our friend El Nino) I got some time on the DH bike for some quick shuttle laps.

A more detailed product review will follow once I have more miles and more experience riding with the Sarpa 2, and to see how it holds up to a big long season of DH riding. What I can say so far is the comfort and fit has been first class. When I first picked the unit up it definitely felt heavier than a "normal" piece of MTB body armour. But when you manhandle it you realize the high quality and finish, and it's fair to say that you can understand the increased level of protection that is being offered.

So given there is a weight gain, the comfort and fit is first class. A little bit of time spent adjusting the straps and I was feeling right at home from day one. With a jersey over the top of it, fellow riders were surprised that I had such substantial protection underneath. There's no bulky feel, other than sort of consciously knowing that the spine protection is right there where it needs to be - you know that you're going to be fully protected from a crazy scorpion move. It gives a sense of confidence and not a make-do body armour setup which I've felt has been the case in the past. Movement on the bike is completely unrestricted and you can just get on with your riding. One thing I like is that the shoulder caps seem to rotate depending on position - so that whatever position on the bike, if you were to crash and take a shoulder-first impact you stand more chance of the cap protecting you from injury. And you don't even notice the movement, so it's not an irritation or discomfort. I'm not sure if the rotation of the cap is by design, or whether it's just my own personal fit and body position. But I really like it.

One thing that been commented on already is the sharp look and first class finish. One thing about high end technology is that perceived value is an important part of the purchase decision. Sure, you want it to do the sensible and rational highly advanced technically innovative thing, but you'd like it to look uber sick too, right? This hits the spot in every way. If you're going to lay down your hard earned dollars on something this good, you want to be sure that when you see it hanging from the rack in the bike shop, it's going to stand out. Well it does. By a country mile.

I'm thinking that when it gets hot (and boy it gets hot up here in the Central Okanagan region of British Columbia - 35-40 degrees at peak of summer) I'd be more than happy to wear it over top of a vest or thin t-shirt. This thing is so sweet looking, it would be a real shame to not show off the carbon shoulder caps and other technically advanced features. As my buddy Rob said, "this thing is way too nice to hide under a jersey". I'm not sure how the white trim will stand up to a long dusty summer of bike park riding at Silver Star, Sun Peaks and Whistler.

I'll report on that longevity aspect later as part of my subsequent review. I'm confident it will stand up way better than some of my other gear has. There's no webbing or mesh here, so nothing to fray or poke through when snagged on twigs or branches.

So far, so awesome.

Disclaimer and heads-up: The reviewer is sponsored by Kali

Similar Products Used: Mace Swat Jacket, Dainese suit
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