These clothes were made for riding

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Icon’s notorious for tackling the problem of squids not using safety gear with loud, obnoxious products that look more at home in comic books than they do outside the world where chin strap beards and denim shorts are acceptable clothes for an adult to wear in public. And they’ve done that, providing an affordable, quality, safe range of products that now adorn wannabe Ruffryderz everywhere. Now, they’re targeting another emerging demographic of riders equally disdainful of safety — young people living in cities. And they’re doing so not with skulls and klowns and tribal graphics, but with some of the most credible, technically innovative, stylish riding gear ever seen. It’s called the One Thousand collection and it’s about to utterly reverse what you think of the brand.

Photos: Grant Ray

D3O done right

We’ve written about D3O a fair bit. But, this is the first time we’ve ever seen it incorporated into products in a manner that actually takes advantage of its benefits. To be very clear, D3O is not any safer than existing CE-certified armor. An elastomeric polymer, the material’s molecules lock together when subjected to an impact, turning the thin, pliable material into a solid. This then deflects impact forces off to the sides. You can read more about D3O here, but the general idea is that it can be much slimmer than traditional armor while being equally capable of ameliorating impacts.

Icon is by no means the first manufacturer to use D3O, but other gear makers have just stuck the armor into existing pockets and products, not designed around it. That means the thin armor is left swimming around in oversize pockets, failing to adequately locate on the pointy bits it’s supposed to protect in the first place. A new company, D3O’s shapes and sizes aren’t quite up to snuff yet. We’d like to see its area of coverage actually expanded over traditional armor, but instead they’re a touch smaller. Putting a crazy thin piece of armor in a pocket designed for something much larger just isn’t a recipe for success.

The above also means that, until now, motorcycle gear has failed to take advantage of D3O’s slimness and pliability to enhance fit and style. Why bother incorporating a super thin piece of armor if the jacket’s shoulders and elbows are still designed to bulk like football pads?

Icon One Thousand Chapter jacket

And that’s what makes this Chapter jacket 100 percent unique in the market. It’s literally the only motorcycle jacket in the entire world actually designed from the ground up to fully realize the advantages of D3O. Which is to say it actually fits.

It’s not just the armor that makes this jacket so special either. Wearing it, you enjoy all the advantages of a traditional leather motorcycle jacket — weather, abrasion and impact protection — but it’s so light and soft and comfy that it feels more like a pajama shirt than a bike jacket. All while incorporating CE-approved protection in the elbows and shoulders and a CE-1 D3O Vyper back protector.

The Chapter isn’t styled to disguise the fact that you ride a motorcycle. This black version comes with red logos and zipper backings that clearly identify it as a sporting good, then there’s accordion stretch panels, a body that’s shorter than the sleeves and fairly significant perforation too. Instead of hiding the fact that you ride a bike, it revels in the fact, making you a good looking biker instead.

There’s also a brown and a grey version that ditch the red highlights. That sneaky bastard Sean called dibs on the brown.

Riding along, it’s easy to forget you’re wearing a jacket at all. It fits closely enough that it doesn’t flutter in the wind, but adds barely any weight and essentially zero restriction to movement. Ventilation is excellent even with the back vents closed; there’s a quilted liner that blocks all that wind and adds a little ventilation too.

Off the bike, the shirt-style collar, minimal logos and, we can’t emphasize this enough, a cut that actually fits a human body with no additional bulk, makes it equally applicable to just wearing around town.

Absolutely beautiful detailing on the zipper pulls, stitching, pockets, tags and whatnot completes the package; it looks and feels a lot more expensive than its $600-650 price tag suggests. A relatively affordable price point made all the more surprising for the jacket’s absolute uniqueness. It’s not going to keep you dry or warm in inclement weather and it can only hope to be as safe as other motorcycle-specific jackets, but its fit, suppleness, comfort and looks make this pretty much the nicest bike jacket ever put in serial production.

Icon Variant Battlescar Helmet

Remember the Icon Airframe Construct? It bares the threads of its carbon/Dyneema/fiberglass shell, creating an organic, three-dimensional look that subverts the traditional high-tech feel of most other bike helmets. The Variant is sort of a dual sport-styled urban helmet with excellent vision and huge amounts of ventilation in addition to complete aerodynamic stability. Think of the Variant as a slightly heavier AGV AX-8 Dual that looks more post-apocalyptic than high-tech and doesn’t get blown around at highway speeds at all.

With three huge, switchable chin vents, two switchable brow vents and the usual pair of top vents, the Variant is cool even in stalled urban traffic and the shield never seems to fog. Contrast that with many more expensive helmets (we’re looking at you Bell and Shoei), which seem to fog at the faintest hint of sub-70-degree weather or slight humidity.

Icon is the only helmet maker to sell all its helmets with worldwide safety certification. Because they don’t like concussions and do like kids, they don’t bother with Snell, but do build to ECE 22.05, DOT, Australia’s SAI and Japan’s SG certifications.

Our only major issue with the Variant is its awkward visor mechanism, which means you have to pop off two side covers with a long, thin screwdriver, swap that for a short, broad driver to remove the retention screws, bend and manipulate the visor out of its holds, then repeat the process to install the new visor. Allow five to ten minutes and at least a dollar in the swear jar.

The quality of all the other components — vent switches; removable, washable liner; etc — is on par if not ahead of most other helmet in the $400 ballpark.

In addition to the Battlescar’s brown or green colors, the Variant is also offered in various graphics in addition to a nice white Construct that, again, Sean snagged.

Icon One Thousand Elsinore Boots

Footwear is one of those eternal problems that plagues the stylish motorcyclist. Anything vaguely acceptable offers shit for protection. Anything vaguely safe looks fucking retarded. These Elsinores meet that dilemma in the middle; one million percent better looking than any motocross boots, they bring that level of protection to a boot that still won’t fit under a single pair of jeans that I own.

And we do mean real protection. Both the toe and heal boxes are extremely solid, complementing the reassuring, steel shank-reinforced sole. The 12” height then secures your ankles, restricting their movement to guard against hyperflexion and extension and those ankles are also protected by sturdy impact protectors. The shin’s are also reinforced with a solid plate, again protecting you from impacts. I’d put these up there in terms of protection with any dirt bike boot this side of a real, high-end motocross boot with internal ankle support (think Astars Tech10s).

Despite that protection, they’re super easy to take on and off. The side straps are sort of a permanent adjustment, you then use the side zipper to slip in and out. That zipper doesn’t interfere with ankle impact protection and, like all the bits and pieces on the Chapter jacket, is super high quality, feeling like it’ll last for years. In fact, in this oiled brown leather and with replaceable Goodyear welt soles, these are pretty much lifetime quality boots.

Offering this level of protection, comfort, convenience and safety in a stylish, $230 package is essentially a revolution for motorcycle boots. If these would fit under skinny jeans, they’d be an absolutely perfect product.


Genuine style, amazing quality, great detailing and honest technical innovation in being the first company to sympathetically incorporate D3O into its products? All at affordable price points? With this new One Thousand collection, Icon has suddenly elevated itself to become, in our honest opinion, the premier maker of street motorcycle gear on the planet. Alpinestars, Dainese and everyone else have a lot of catching up to do.

Other products

I’m also wearing my Deth Killers Asphalt Resistant Jeans and the Icon One Thousand Rimfire gloves in these photos. And yeah, that’s a Yamaha Super Tenere. More on that bike soon, it’s great. OCD attention to detail will also reveal that I’m wearing knee armor. More on that shortly too.

  • duncanbojangles

    Well, I know what I’m buying with all the extra insurance money from my totaled bike. Now where can I find handsome gloves that protect my scaphoid bones like Fort Knox protects gold?


      Knox hand armour line. Scaphoid sliders up the wazoo.

      • Lacubrious

        The scaphoid protections is furealz. I tested it out last October. My hands are perfect. The bike…not so much.

    • Felix

      Racer High Racer gloves (forgive the naming, they’re Austrian)

  • oldblue

    100 points for use of ‘amelioration’ in a sentence.

  • Shaun Lewis

    Sorry, off topic, but you mention the Deth Killers Jeans. I’ve been lusting after those for a while. Unfortunately, being short and athletic, skinny jeans don’t work for me. The thighs in most skinny jean are smaller than my calves. Anyway, I noticed Dainese now makes a Kevlar weave denim (

    Any chance of getting a review on these sometime soon?


    • zero

      Agreed. Sprinter and rugby player here and I can’t fit into anything resembling skinny jeans. I’m 6’2″ 190 but most of it is in my thighs and ass so I have trouble finding normal jeans that fit right, let alone riding jeans.

      Those Dainese look promising though. I would also appreciate a review. Or if you need tester in the NYC area…

    • Ben Incarnate

      Looking at those Dainese jeans, it says it’s denim with Kevlar internal reinforcements – meaning pretty much the same as most of the other options out there, style aside.

      Were these the ones you meant to reference:

      • Shaun Lewis

        Yes, those are the ones. Thanks.

        Here’s a short review on Revzilla;

        But I’d still like a more in depth look by someone who’s not trying to sell them.

        • Ben Incarnate

          Big problem with those jeans is the lack of accommodation for knee armor. The D1 style, also Kevlar weave, take knee armor but look awful.

          • Shaun Lewis

            Yeah, that’s true. But I’m not looking for race level protection. I have more technical gear for aggressive riding. I commute on two for work and school. I’m looking for something I can wear daily that’ll offer me a bit more abrasion resistance than a pair of Dockers but won’t look out of place off the bike. I can’t imagine anything with armor is going to look right off the bike, in the office or the classroom.

  • Raubert Van Harris

    If they took the patch off the upper arm and changed the red accents to something more neutral, that would be an amazing looking jacket!

    • Raubert Van Harris

      Just noticed the part about the brown version with no red accents ;)

      …but then I saw this and became a hater again

      • robotribe

        “SHORTY JACKET”?

        That’s too rich. Funny how this shits on any safety credibility Icon may think they’re earning with some of their offerings. They remind me of my parents: do as I say not as I do!

        What a joke.

      • the_doctor


        Just wow.

      • Sean (the other one)

        well played, sir.

      • BMW11GS

        I can just imagine the dude who wears that. “Yo my name is Dennissss (slight angry hiss on all the sss’s) (now in a creepy voice) “Do those funky bike boots make you run faster?”

      • Felix


      • Gavin

        I don’t understand you guys hating on them for making stuff like this. It’s just another option, its the same as their stryker gear only for a different rider. This is for the Harley guy who would be riding around with zero protection otherwise.

        • Raubert Van Harris

          (Warning Graphic)

          Maybe zero protection is better than thinking you’re protected? I don’t think it would have helped this guy one bit.

          • Mark D [EX500]


            • Archer

              Sweet jumping catfish, he would have been better off walking into a propeller…

          • Daniel Mast

            FUUUUUU… That is why I wear full leather. I don’t care how damn hot it is.

        • Gene

          Or the same guy that would play Lawn Darts.

  • Archer

    Re: ICON copy associated with the Revzilla link above:

    “attitude”, “legitimacy” and “tactical advantage” in the description of a so-called riding jacket with SHORT FRACKIN SLEEVES are phrases that deserve the bitchslapping of whatever marketing geek wrote them.


      It’s hard to tell what’s the tail and what’s the dog at Icon. Marketing? Design? Safety’s probably the spleen or something.

    • Grant Ray

      Archer, I was told the Shorty is a direct response to riders cutting their sleeves off their old leather jackets for summer in Texas and Florida, which have a combined rider base far greater than California. Yeah, it’s not a style either of us would rock, but you’re a business man. Would you refuse to offer product to a known, large scale purchasing market?

      • Scott-jay

        “… Texas and Florida, which have a combined rider base far greater than California.”

      • Archer

        well actually, Grant, yes. We don’t sell the exploding Rambo broadheads anymore. It’s a matter of social responsibility….

        • Grant Ray

          Holy shit, Easton actually sold exploding broadheads?!? Well yeah, that’s a bit on the batshit crazy side. By comparison, the Shorty is a glorified vest with a bit of armor, which is at least getting dudes who rock vests to consider safety gear.

          Got any videos of said exploding broadheads?

          • Jesse

            Said videos would be irresponsible. Yet utterly awesome.

      • Shaun Lewis

        Successful companies refuse to offer products to known, large scale purchasing markets all the time. Apple doesn’t offer budget tablets, J. Crew doesn’t offer baggy jeans, and Lamborghini doesn’t offer fuel efficient city cars. There are lucrative markets for them all, but they don’t fit the respective company’s brand identity. Icon has crafted a brand identity that includes sleeveless jackets, assless chaps, and lots of flaming skulls. This is going to hurt them in high end markets. Not saying they can’t overcome it. Icon has come a long way in the past ten years. But I think they’d do much better offering high gear without the tacky logos. I really like the brown version of the Chapter, but the sleeve patches ruin it for me.

        Roland Sands’ gear got it right in terms of styling. No garish logos, just quality material and attention to detail. If the RSD Ronin jacket had this jacket’s discreet 3DO integration, it would be near perfect.

        • Grant Ray

          Shaun, I think the the Apple/J. Crew/Lambo comparisons are off. The Shorty is for an ignored audience of riders that Icon has historically catered to, educating them about safety gear along the way. Why would Icon suddenly turn face and ignore that same customer base it’s spent years building and nurturing towards safer riding practices?

          • Shaun Lewis

            Admittedly, it’s not exactly a fair comparison. I was just countering the assertion that a business wouldn’t refuse to offer products to known markets. Obviously, they do it all the time.

            But you’re right. It’s a different situation for Icon.
            They already cater to this market. And, no, I don’t think it would make sense for them to turn there backs on the customer base that helped them get where they are now.

        • Gavin

          Icon isn’t trying to be a Lambo, look at it like ford or Toyota, they have offerings to every segment of the market.

    • Case

      @ archer: JPeterman didn’t die, he just moved to icon and got FUCKING TOUGH AS HELL, BRO.

    • Myles

      Every single thing a person does in life can be broken down to a simple risk/reward calculation. I ride with a vest (d3o) and tee all the time, because I ride when it’s fucking hot all the time. I care about protecting my vitals (mostly my head, back, and chest) – and honestly don’t care that much about the skin on my arms. I have health insurance and chicks dig scars.

      It doesn’t take a marketing nerd to realize that most riders aren’t ATGATT or whatever. Have fun riding to work in race leathers and full boots everyday, bruh.

  • $Lindz$

    Not gonna shit on your parade TOO much here Wes but Dainese has some killer “urban/stylish” jackets now. I know you guys wrote sweet little things about the Greyhound but the cut is a little too “upright” for a sportbike (or a Monster with clip ons) so I picked up an R-Twin the other week. It’s killer. I’d be curious what you’d think about it… the price isn’t much more than this 1000 gear. I really feel like once you’re in the $600+ range you shouldn’t be sacrificing performance for style, or perhaps more importantly for the city, vice versa.

    Much like the Icon 1000 line, the branding is real stealth and the materials are Dainese top-notch. The leather is vintage-store quality, real real dope stuff coming out from them.

    Hate to say it because I have friends at AStars as well, but they seem to be the “premium” brand with the most catching up to do.

    Also: I totally picked up another set of Axial Pro Ins (black this time, haha) so that they can fit under my skinny jeans (no shame). I can’t get down with the big fuck-off moon-boot lumberjack jams.

    • Sean Smith

      I have A LOT of friends who wear those boots for exactly that reason.

      • Sean (the other one)

        “Lots of friends” is a bit of an overstatement

  • Campisi

    Hopefully Icon or Revzilla ships to Korea.


    Kudos for making a d3o specific jacket, but I wish those cheesy shield logos on the sleeves weren’t integrated so deeply. A seam ripper would probably do more harm than good. What’s more, they made a logo-free version of the retarded short sleeve leather jacket in the same collection. THANKS ICON! They may finally be getting on the right track, but so much is still very wrong.

    • Gene

      Oh god yes. That logo is the thing that said “not for me” along with the ghey pink zippers.

      • Pydev

        What’s with all the logo hate? I mean, we’re talking 2 badges… not like we have to look at giant logos across the back, down the arms, along the neck like so many other jackets (A*, Rev’it, Dainese). It’s basically a clean looking jacket.

  • Ben Incarnate

    I love gear reviews, but damn if it doesn’t seem like Icon can do no wrong on HFL. The red accents on black are tacky, but justifications are made. Suddenly, the AX-8 Dual really isn’t that great. And so on. Many times, I’ve left an Icon article interested, only to see the gear in person and walk away discouraged.

    I like that they’re pushing in this direction, but unless this stuff doesn’t photograph well, I’m underwhelmed.

    • miles

      Free stuff tends to bias people. Then again this is fashion commentary from dudes in skinny jeans….

      Whatever works for ya. Form and function, to each his own.

      • Grant Ray

        To Miles and Ben Incarnate, my friend Al doesn’t wear skinny jeans, and neither do I. And while the Squid might, he had no qualms discussing issues with his Icon boots or an ill-fitting jacket. The emails we got from Icon after Al’s review weren’t exactly friendly, and neither was the exchange after the wet boot. But, to Icon’s credit, the company has proven to be very adept at rapidly correcting quality control issues as well as listening to upcoming trends being pushed by street riders. For the moment, they’re moving faster and smarter than anyone else.

        • Ben Incarnate

          I appreciate honesty when there are blatant problems, Grant. My memory gets fickle when praise is so lavish – I was wrong.

          They’re doing amazing things. I want to support Icon and their development in that direction. I’m just not as impressed as I expect to be once I see the gear in person.

        • miles

          My perception is ICON is like a JOE ROCKET Part 2, with good marketing and like Harley Davidson marketing is driving the ship.

          I have worn 2 sets of there shorty gloves (despite the hideous logos) and have been very happy with them.

          Good for them focusing on faster market response with better and innovative products, as any competitive company should.

          It seems HFL is a big part of the ICON marketing effort, lots of free press and “market feedback” from the comments sections.

          It seems ICON products are reviewed by HFL much more frequently than any other brand.

          Couple free jackets here, a helmet there, some boots over there, a custom one off suit there…

          I appreciate your reporting and I appreciate your stylistic opinions (even if I disagree).

          I just think you might want include disclosure that you are being “comped” gear for testing / review.

          • Grant Ray

            Miles, those are some pretty strong inferences, so I’ll make this really clear: Icon gets coverage because the company actively engages with HFL to review product for you, the reader and subscriber.

            While there are exceptions like Alpinestars, Scorpion, Bell, and a few others, the majority of other companies within the motorcycle apparel industry have communications departments that remain either woefully incompetent or flat-out refuse to return repeated requests for product review. Click the links of my previous comment. We never shy from calling out product deficiencies.

          • Wes Siler

            Miles, don’t throw accusations like that around. Disclosures are used by outlets that don’t have an open relationship with their readers like we do.

            Here’s the only disclosure you’ll ever need from us: we work for you, we have your best interests in mind at all times. End of story.

          • Ben Incarnate

            What difference would the disclosure make? I expect that anything reviewed from any outlet is provided at no charge unless explicitly stated otherwise.

      • Sean (the other one)

        i was with wes when the box arrived and i am more concerned about looks than any person should be. I’ll tell you what I told him.

        The level of quality and fit that Icon is coming out with is nothing short of incredible, especially for the pricepoint. But i still won’t wear it until they fix things like red seams and ugly logos.

        i could not agree more with Grant’s statement that they are moving faster and smarter than anyone else. each new thing they come out with is a huge improvement over the last.

    • contender

      The AX-8 Dual was on sale on both bikebandit (in grande sizes) and revzilla. I got one for $169 shipped. Comparing both in person makes me think I found the right score.

      Icon’s making great strides, but they’re certainly not the only game in town. Read HFL reviews, then process for yourself.

    • Wes Siler

      Icon gets good reviews because Icon makes good gear. Simple as that.

      I’m still wearing my AX-8 Dual over the Variant. I don’t like the brown or the fussy vents/peak/wing on the Icon. Having said that, it is more aerodynamically stable than the AGV.

      • Ben Incarnate

        I didn’t say the gear is bad, just not as good as I expect it to be after reading. That’s all.

        • Wes Siler

          Pick up some of this new stuff and I think you’ll be very surprised by how nice it’s made. The jacket isn’t a Vanson, but then, nothing is.

          • Ben Incarnate

            Will do, Wes. I certainly don’t expect Vanson when a jacket is described as being light, that’s for sure.

  • jonoabq

    Sorry, but the boots look like bad movie props (to be seen on someone riding a Steve McQueen special edition Triumph)and although the jacket might fit/feel great I can’t make myself enjoy the idea of a lifetime wearing a jacket with red zipper accents.
    Want stealthy m-bike boots, head for the Sidi Canyons or something similar. You won’t have to look back on your purchase decision like many people I know know look back on the 80′s.
    Are they heading in the right direction? No doubt. Are they there? Possibly, if they bring to market totally blacked out track suits (minus the mini hump) and/or two piece combo’s like the wonderful yet not for sale version I’ve seen worn on other HFL bike reviews.

    • contender

      Canyons? They are my daily boots, but I wouldn’t call them stealthy. Or stylish. I still change out of them when I get to work, and sometimes when I go out I will lock them in the top box. When my goddamned Buell is working, that is, and I have a top box.

    • Sean Smith

      That two-piece IS currently for sale, just not as a two piece. Pair an overlord jacket with overlord prime pants and you’ve got yourself a great two-piece (sans pucks).

      • jonoabq

        Close, but in the current configuration it’s more of a toolin’ around two piece, not a track suit.
        Talked to Pilot a while back to see if they would build/sell a one piece minus all of the Pilot logos…sadly, they said “no”. They will remove all but five of them though.

    • Ben Incarnate

      RS Taichi used to have a “Zero” suit. Blacked out, fully perfed, no hump. There are eight logos, though. I believe all but two could be easily removed. I picked one up on sale and don’t regret it.

  • Van Doan

    And how are the boots vs Gasolinas?

    • contender

      This please.

    • Wes Siler

      Impact protection. Availability.

  • BigRooster

    Boots are horrid, they look like UGS with those tight ass jeans. Whats with all the straps and buckles?

    Jacket isnt bad, less the patches, but those are forgivable. I dont mind the red accents either. Helmet is cool in a halo sort of way, I like the visor. Remove that sun shade and it would look like a fighter pilot helmet (or something from OSBE).

    Dont care for the gloves but not offensive.

    All and all its way better than the typicaly garish squiderific stuff from icon.

  • Devin

    A blacked out version would be nice, but those logo’s are acceptable.

  • BigRooster

    “…in fact, in this oiled brown leather and with replaceable Goodyear welt soles, these are pretty much lifetime quality boots.

    …If these would fit under skinny jeans, they’d be an absolutely perfect product.”

    Just wait a few years and the curse that is the skinny jean for men fad will pass and we can go back to only seening cowboys and the construction worker from the Village People in the ball huggers.

    • Campisi

      I dunno, man, 501s probably aren’t going anywhere…

    • 80-watt Hamster

      Right. HFL’s continuing dedication to skinnys perplexes me. ‘Sides, if one wants jeans to go over boots, get a (*gasp!*) boot cut.

      • Wes Siler

        Gasp indeed.

        • Tommy

          Can we just stop calling them skinny jeans and call them jeans that actually fit, and then maybe the hate will go away?

          • Gene

            No, because I just don’t want to be able to notice if a guy is circumcised or not, TYVM.

          • jonoabq

            no, but you could start calling them jeans that fit to tight to wear boots and make you look foolish.
            Jeans at the tail ends of the bell curve get names with descriptors (baggy/skinny), the ones in the middle get to be called jeans and go over motorcycle boots just fine..

            • Mark D [EX500]

              511′s are “skinny” jeans, and most boots fit just fine underneath.

              • Sean Smith

                511s are actually pretty close to what 501s used to be.

          • BigRooster

            There is a major difference between skinny jeans and jeans that fit.


            The worst is the skinny jean sporting a sag. What jackass thought these two disparate styles would work well together?

  • the_doctor

    I can’t wait for the crash test review of this gear.

  • JMcMahon

    I like the simple classic design of the jacket and the rest of the product line. It evokes memories of the desert race scene from On Any Sunday. However, I have to agree with another commenter that said it comes off like a movie prop. At first take I thought it looked pretty cool, but on second look I was reminded of another group of desert rats; Humungus’s motorcycle gang in the Road Warrior.

    I can do On Any Sunday, I cant do Road Warrior.

    I vote Hasselhoff.

  • Jesse

    I’m waiting on how you managed to get armor under these Deth Killers without knee surgery.

  • Jesse

    Like the Chapter jacket, and the Rimfire gloves. I’ve brow beat my “local” shops into carrying Icon merch to no avail, and I’m real hesitant to purchase another jacket w/out trying it on first.

    Boots aren’t my style, but they do look bombproof.

  • The Other Will

    How are the badges attached? Can you slice em off without damaging the sleeves? I don’t like advertising for companies no matter how much I like their product. Agreed though that the 1000 line finally looks like something that humans might wear.

    • Wes Siler

      They’re embedded in the leather, so taking them off would just leave either a hole or a weird patch indented where the badge was.

    • Mark D [EX500]

      For what its worth, they’re pretty close in color to the grey jacket, which is the best looking in my opinion.

  • Brad W.

    I don’t understand the hate. Good gear that looks cool and actually fits. I keep seeing these douches wearing shorts and a t-shirt or looking like a blob wearing a bright yellow snow suit. Keep these reviews going.

  • Miles Prower [690 Duke, MTS 1200]

    I think Icon should make a snap-on or zip-on hood accessory. On days that are too hot to wear the requisite hoodie underneath the jacket, you can attach just a hood — so you can remain cool (in temperature) while still looking the part of an Icon warrior. ;^)

  • Holden and Annette

    I’d love to see Sean’s brown jacket. Whenever you have the chance, maybe a pic of someone wearing that?

    • Sean Smith

      I’ll post one in a few weeks when I’m riding again ;)

      • Holden and Annette

        Please do! I’ve seen a photo of the jacket while disembodied, and it’s more informative to see a pic of one being worn.

  • Frosty_spl

    I’m pretty sure I’m gonna buy the brown jacket. I might compare it with a similar Dainese and RSD, but those don’t have back protectors.

  • SamuraiMark

    The brown is here:

    Also available in a grey. Not a fan of either. Icon has other nice looking jackets available in ‘stealth’ or black on black with comparatively minimal logo-ization.

    The new Compound jacket is available in all black, but it has one of those giant plastic goo-gahs on the upper back.

    The Overload (previously reviewed on HFL) in stealth or the Motorhead in black/black FTW.

  • Chris Davis

    Where was all this demand for all-black and stealthy logos in ’09?

    • Wes Siler

      Where was Shift’s market presence and marketing?

      • Chris Davis

        I’m sure there was an ad for it once…somewhere.

  • JVictor75

    I’ve recently had to toss my third pair of Icon Superduty boots (a combination of 2 pairs of SD3′s and 1 SD4) in the trash after the eyelets ripped out after three months of ownership (each time – although the sole started to split on my 2nd pair of SD3s as well) and light commuting use. I liked them, they just don’t hold up to daily use.

    For the record, I only wore the boots about an hour and a half each day during the week and maybe 6 to 8 hours on the weekends.

    So I’m now in the market for a decent calf high zippered boot that won’t make my feet feel like they are going to sweat to death this summer (I live in Phoenix).

    Water proofing is a plus but not a requirement. My commute is 18-25 miles (one way) of mixed highway and surface street (surface street in the mornings and highway in the afternoon).

    I’m using (don’t laugh) Vega Nitros as an interim replacement until I can figure out what I want.

    Wes, how well do the elsinores “breathe”? And how well do you think that they will hold up over time?

    Would anyone else recommend anything different?

    I’ve been looking at the SIDI On-Road Gore-Tex boots, as well as others (Alpinestars ST vented, SIDI canyons, etc) but wanted to at least get a good review base on the new Icons before I made a decision.

    • Wes Siler

      I’ve never understood the need for ventilated footwear on the street. But then, I’ve never lived in Phoenix.

      If quality is what you’re after, try the Aerostich Combat Lites.

      • JVictor75


      • jonoabq

        Combat & Combat lites…made by Sidi for Aerostich, fit like the Sidi Canyon’s but slower to get in and out of.

      • Gene

        Ventilated footwear… do I need to repost about how I slosh around in a bucket of warm spit with the damn waterproof stuff? Some of us sweat in the “footal” area…

        • JVictor75

          Ugh… No please don’t bring that up again (lol).

          I’m used to military footwear (better be, it was 15 years in January). I LOVED my “tanker boots” when I still rated wearing them, so heat really isn’t a ginormous problem but is still a consideration. I just don’t need insulated AND waterproof. Especially in AZ.

        • Wes Siler

          Yeah, please never mention that ever again. Gross dude.

  • Case

    Master Chief called – he wants his helmet back.

    Wes loves Icon like no other. I’m not trying to impugn your journalistic integrity; I believe that you really do think it’s great. In a very few instances, I agree. This is not one of those instances.

    The boots are hideous and overdone. You traded looking like Spaceman Spiff for looking like an extra from The Road Warrior.

    The jacket is less awful. It has a nice silhouette, so you look like a person instead of a comic book character. But it still has that crap red trim and ugly logos. I know Wes thinks the Belstaff jackets are too “italian hairdresser” but IMO they look miles better than this jacket. I understand they are in a different price range but at $600+, this is getting into that territory. One man’s opinion.

  • BenP

    My last Icon purchase was a set of gloves, which were ruined after a half a season of light wear. Turned me off of the brand, would not want to rely on something that delicate in an accident.

    Has Icon really addressed their quality issues?

    • SamuraiMark

      I have some Overlord Long gloves and Patrol boots. They’re not yet a year old but they are in fine condition so far. Daily commutes and weekend sprints. I don’t know enough to say whether these gloves and boots are actually any good (e.g., all the armour bits on the gloves). But I find them comfortable. The boots are non-Gore-tex waterproof, so they don’t breath, but they seem to work well enough and it doesn’t get ridiculously hot where I live.

  • Shaun Lewis

    The brown version looks really nice. If it didn’t have the cheesy logos on the arms, I’d consider it. BTW, there are plenty of other companies making serious but discreet protective gear. Rev’it and Dainese come to mind. Of, course the 3DO implementation sets the One Thousand apart, but in exchange for low profile armor you have to accept corny branding. No thanks.

  • fasterfaster

    I’m impressed. It’s still more elaborate than I’d like, but a strong step in the right direction and nice to see someone tech into gear somewhat subtly. Keep it up, Icon. Drop the logos and rubber inlays and you may earn yourself another customer.

  • evilbahumut

    I almost forgot why I subscribe: Half the assholes who comment on this mag are as bad as the assholes who write it. I love me some HFL!

    And personally, I love those boots.

    • RT Moto


    • JVictor75

      Who are you calling an assho… Oh. Right.

  • damien

    How would you rate this jacket and gloves against the RSD stuff that has just come out? I prefer the look of the RSD, and prices are about the same.

    • Frosty_spl

      The RSD jackets don’t have any padding, just pockets for them. You have to supply your own D3O.

    • Shaun Lewis

      I had an RSD ronin jacket. Very impressed with the quality and style (No tacky logos). The fit is small, not European trim, but really small, so order a size up.

      Like Frosty said, it doesn’t include armor, but it sells for $70 bucks less than the Chapter (other RSD jackets or cheaper.) By the time you add your own 3DO or Bio Armor, your looking at about the same price tag, or cheaper. (Personally, I just scavenged armor from an older jacket.)

    • evilbahumut

      Has anyone tried on the RSD Gloves? Fitment or sizing issues?

  • paul redican

    I’ll stick to my Belstaff as I won’t need a handgun to complete the image. Although Wes would suggest a hairdryer instead ;)

  • Mark D [EX500]

    What the hell Sean, you won’t be on a bike for another three months and you’re stealing all the best looking gear?

  • Tommy

    The jacket and jeans look way better in your real life photos than they do in icons photos. I dont know if thats a good thing or bad thing. One more case of motorcycle companies coming so close, but still not there. I dont get whats so hard about it.

    The gloves are sick though. I give the variant a big thumbs down though. Heavy, kinda loud, and actually leaked on me when it rained. Love my ax-8.

  • Jeffery Boaz

    Very much so. I like the look but Icon has built itself as the lifestyle brand of the “anti-chrome” of the younger generation of newer riders. Its all been done before(I still have the stuff in some cases) but its still nice to see it still around. The important part is that it sells hopefully. From the industry side we need more stuff that keeps new riders coming in and staying in. So if this appeals to them then so be it. Keep them protected while they crash and wear the squid off. There are very few older riders that have not done stupid stuff when they were new riders and younger. SFMX comes to mind and not the one that was in the Cow Palace this was regular occurrence at one time in the city on Sunday nights. If sit and drink long enough I even get sentimental and think how lucky I am to still be here and working in an industry I love. Keep riding.

  • JOEL

    I’m going to have to respectfully disagree about those boots. They’re pretty uggo. But if you are that into steampunk that’s cool I guess.

  • CCarey

    I really dig the Elsinores (despite the slightly unnecessary amount if buckles) and am on the verge of pulling the trigger on a pair. The question is just how ridiculously out of place ate these gonna look on my 600RR?

    • Sean Smith

      Just pick up a set of knobbies and a dualsport helmet. You’ll be fine.

      • CCarey

        Haha those Contis have me seriously rethinking my transportation choices for Boston winters, as fun as my E30 is in the snow I doubt it can compare to a super sport and knobbies!

        • Squid_Squidly

          Would it be gay if I bought a pair myself? I mean we both already have Messengers…


          • CCarey

            If by gay you mean awesome than yes! It would be totally gay, especially when you finally move up here!

        • Jesse

          Depends on how far out of Boston you are coming into, and your timing. This past winter was easy, it was only cold. My old F3 has seen snow, but the salt was hell on brakes and suspension bits. I’d recommend dual sport with knobbies. Cheaper to replace bits.

  • CCarey

    Also very eager to hear about the knee armor as my Dethkillers likely wouldn’t come close to the protection Sean’s armored Axioms offered.

  • Benjamin

    It’d be great to get a review of the RSD Ronin and Tracker jackets that accept armor, I’m basically between the Ronin and the Icon at this point and plan to sell my two Dianese jackets that I can never wait to get out of. Thanks for pushing for no compromises on safety/style. I’d love to live in a world where I put all my gear on and feel safe and comfortable at the same time.

    • Sean (the other one)

      which dainese jackets? why don’t you like them? be helpful to know what is wrong with what you have and what you are looking for to recommend anything.


    this thread BLEW UP!!1! LIKE ICON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Benjamin

    I have the Zen and a textile one (don’t know the name). I don’t dislike the jackets, but essentially they’re armor, not clothing.

    I’m rebuilding my 78 SR500 from the ground up right now and have a passion for old bikes. That said, I also love having a face and working limbs. I don’t want to look like an anachronism on my bike and would like understated or classically styled gear to wear when I ride, but don’t want to fake safety with a Biltwell novelty lid and a fashion leather jacket.

    I believe in dressing for the crash, but I don’t think that’s a good excuse for why I can’t find gear that seems to match my style and personality. Motorcycle riders are an individualistic lot in general, and HFL has raised the issue that the gear, and in many cases the OEM bikes we’re presented with are so painfully limiting and seemingly designed by people who love decals & logos more than good design.

    I’d also note that I have the AGV Rossi Dreamtime helmet. It’s loud, new and I love it. I think riders can mix old and new style gear, it’s not about wearing a period costume, it’s about bringing good tech and good design together for discerning customers. Moto brands in general tend to fundamentally put their own brand identity over the identity of their riders, which seems oppressive and runs counter to the spirit of motorcycling in my opinion.

    That’s why people love the look of a Perfecto jacket or an old Buco bucket, those were designs that are no longer technologically relevant, but put the rider over the brand in that way made those designs eminently wearable, so much so that they are now symbols of motorcycling. That’s the difference between an icon and an Icon.

    • Sean (the other one)

      so you just want a leaher jacket without armor? the zen is pretty mellow style wise and with armor, you probably wont find much better.

      the RSD jackets are really nice, but they dont have armor.

      • Benjamin

        I definitely want full armor and I know a few of the RSD jackets accept CE, Just minimal design and profile. Also love the D30! I’m hoping to see more of it, do you know if they’re exploring using it in helmets?

        • Wes Siler

          D3O isn’t really applicable to helmets.

          I’d also really worry about inserting any armor in a jacket not made to work with that specific armor. It’s all different shapes and sizes. Brand X armor will not necessarily fit Brand Y jacket. And you really, really, really want armor to fit correctly in the pockets; that effect location over pointy bits of your body, comfort, fit etc.

  • Ratlanta


    …and that’s just what they’ll do. One of these days these clothes are going to ride all over you.

  • Myles

    Anyone else digging the ladie’s jacket? If I could get that in tan I’d be a pretty happy camper.

  • Tim Norris

    Don’t forget to follow up on the knee armor… Unless it’s somewhere and I missed it?!