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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi there,

I'm a relatively new rider from the UK, and have a couple of questions about Body Armour.....

I ride a Marin Pine Mountain mainly cross country but also some Mountain riding, although still a relative novice I'd have to say I probably do ride fairly aggressively, judging by the amount of small crashes and near misses. This of course is all adds to the fun, until I had a fairly simple fall off and brusied my shoulder fairly badly, nothing too bad but it ached for a few weeks.....

Anyway this has made me think about getting some Body armour and I just wanted to get some feedback on the level or style of protection i might need.

With summer riding in mind I was looking at this product, a lightwieght piece of armour
http://www.sixsixone.com/Catalog_66...&product=3ee343ed-f18e-48e1-abe1-7233429429dc

I was also wondering whether picking up a 2nd hand flak jacket/bulletproof vest from ebay might work as basic protection? http://cgi.ebay.co.uk/Flack-Jacket-...696QQihZ005QQcategoryZ135QQrdZ1QQcmdZViewItem

Or should I just go for a full on suit like this: http://www.dainese.com/eng/articolo.asp?cat=6&nome=IMPACT_ARMOUR&articolo=3879554

It's not the money so much as what's required, It's not full on downhill I'm riding but then at the same time I don't fancy having a major off and just a helmet to protect me!

any feedback greatly appreciated

cheers

Kieran (uk)
 

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Armour in order of escalation would be knee/shin, forearm/elbow and then on to the 'suited' approaches that incorporate shoulder, chest and back protection.

Typically, the more aggressive the terrain the more body armour you would choose to wear. If you're mainly riding cross country, then you might consider some knee/shin armour if you're likely to hit rocks when coming off your bike.

That said, I rode recreational XC in the UK (south of London, Wales and the Lakes) for several years and never came across anything that remotely warranted armour. So unless you're looking for particularly dangerous terrain or based up in the Highlands, I suspect that armour might not be the best answer.

If you're new to riding, perhaps you need to learn how to fall off a bike safely (not being funny here!). Don't stick out your arm to break a fall (you'll damage a wrist or elbow), roll with the impact if you come off the bike, or stick with the bike and let it take the impact if you fall on a fast firetrail.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
hi,

cheers for the feedback there, yeah I've been doing alot of riding in the Lakes and Pennines parts of the trails are very rocky in places and I think there's parts where I guess I've reached up to 25-30 mph on small tracks... like I said I've had a few new misses, and I totally agree with the falling of a bike comment - I guess maybe with the Knee and elbow pads I could roll with the impact a bit better, be a bit more confident of not smashing them!

so you wouldnt bother with the lightweight vest? or Bulletproof/padded vest? and skip straight to suit...

also as I am riding a Steel hardtail, is that more likely to warrant needing armour? as it's easier to loose control on rocky downhill sections

cheer
 

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If it's rocky, then the leg and arm stuff can really help.

With the full-on suits, you've got to balance that against the fact that you're going to sweat buckets riding uphill. Ah, that military jacket looks pretty useless for biking! No impact protection and hot.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
brilliant, cheers I'll give the Leg and arm stuff a go first then, any brands you would reccomend? I quite like the look of the Rock Gardn stuff....

oh and thanks for the feedback on the jacket, would have looked a right tit sweating in that, haha
 

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Different brands seem to fit different people. When you try stuff on, you'll have to try to avoid straps or internal stitching that will chafe after a couple hours of riding.

I've noticed on the forums that Rockgarden, 661, Fox and Raceface/Roach are all generally well-regarded. I've got some Raceface stuff and think it's ver well designed (but for people with skinny legs, and the stitching is pretty poor!). Generally quite happy with it.

Don't know if you can find Rockgarden easily in the UK- most their dealers seem to be based around the Rockies. Dainese seems to be an available option in your part of the world and doesn't get so much press on the forums as it's scarcer in the US.

Avoid the Lizard Skin stuff- they take a stupid "one size fits nobody" approach.

There are lots of threads on armour, some of them quite good. Do a search, or perhaps someone more knowledgeable will wade in on this one (I've only been using armour for a month!)
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
cheers for all your help Womble, guess I will just have to try a few on and see how the fit, there's a retailer that sells Fox kit nearby so I can start there I think

cheers

kieran
 
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