Gear: Joe Rocket Classic ‘92 Leather Motorcycle Jacket – Review

Gear -


Gear: Joe Rocket Classic ‘92 Leather Motorcycle Jacket - Review

There are, apparently, some who claim that the appropriate response to pricey motorcycle gear is to buy a cheaper motorcycle. For the rest of us, there is plenty of decent, stylish gear available for prices that don’t force you to trade in your sweet ride for a beater.

The Gear

Not everyone can afford high-end leathers, and it’s lucky for those riders that Joe Rocket exists. The Classic ‘92 takes the modern leather riding jacket, manufactured with contemporary materials and quality techniques, and gives it a retro spin with a narrow cut, quilted shoulders, and racing stripes. For a bit over 300 bucks, you get a brand-new, leather riding jacket with nostalgic styling flourishes that ensure you can ride a bike that looks at least as cool as you do.

Gear: Joe Rocket Classic ‘92 Leather Motorcycle Jacket - Review
Joe Rocket Classic ‘92 Leather Motorcycle Jacket

The Good

The supple and strong, 1-1.2 mm drum-dyed cowhide might not be as thick as racing leather but it’s certainly not the cheap stuff. The use of solid, sturdy YKK zippers is a telltale sign that quality was important to the jacket’s production. The inner storm flap should serve to keep elements out and the neoprene-lined collar is a nice comfort touch as well.

The best feature of the Classic ‘92 is its off-white, zip-out liner. Unlike a lot of synthetic fabric liners, the thick quilted cotton here is sure to be functional. Even better, the cotton makes it one of the most comfortable full-sleeve liners I’ve ever worn.

Finally, snap adjusters on the waist and forearms should make the jacket versatile enough for chubby or extra-skinny guys. At 5’11/185 lbs, I’m pretty average-sized, and simply left the adjusters alone.

The Bad

Storage on the Classic ‘92 is just okay, but that’s a common complaint with tight-fitting jackets. Considering the snug fit the outside horizontal breast pockets might be better reserved for appearance purposes only. There’s also a small key pocket on the left forearm that could feasibly come in handy for tiny items like a single bike key or driver’s license. But it’s too small to accommodate even a smartphone. (Still rockin’ the flip phone? You might be in luck here. Maybe.) The two inner lapel pockets will surely be the go-to items for daily riders.

Lastly, considering the “Made in Vietnam” tag, it’s clear the Classic was machine-stitched on a production line. But what did you expect for this price?

Gear: Joe Rocket Classic ‘92 Leather Motorcycle Jacket - Review
Joe Rocket Classic ‘92 Leather Jacket

The Verdict

This is not a racing jacket. This is not a logo-ridden, “look-at-me” fashion statement. Rather, Joe Rocket’s Classic ‘92 is a decent quality, retro leather jacket that should serve its owner dutifully and allow him to look as good as his current motorcycle.

The Joe Rocket Classic ‘92 for men comes in black only and will cost between $319.99 – $335.99, depending on size (small-3XL). It should be noted that the jacket does not come with its optional armor which can be purchased separately. RideApart advises that you roll the extra dough for the additional protection.


Joe Rocket Classic ‘92 Leather Motorcycle Jacket Product Information >>

  • Donnie Byers

    The more I ride, the more I get into retro riding gear versus the Power Ranger look. I’m also starting to appreciate Joe Rocket stuff more as well. I used to be a Dainese/Alpinestars snob, but Joe Rocket gear is pretty damm comfy in comparison and a helluva lot cheaper.

    • Davidabl2

      –or at least “Ninja Turtle” instead of Power Ranger..and probably the bad guys not the Turtles

  • Justin McClintock

    I dig the styling. That said, I need something that works year round. I currently wear a Tourmaster Coaster II that has treated me very well for the last 7 years. But it’s showing its age a bit and I hate the styling of the newer Coaster’s. I need something like this, with armor, a zip out liner (for the winter), and those pockets need to double as vents (for the summer). Then we’d be on to something. As is, I’m probably going to end up spending more and getting something custom (or at least custom fitted) made next time around.

  • Lourens Smak

    I really like this jacket, but with the armor added it’s maybe not that cheap anymore; still looks like a good buy for the price, looks well-made on the pictures. I like the curved arms, many of the “cheaper” leather jackets appear to have straight arms… (oh and on the picture the small zip is on the right arm instead of the left?). Joe Rocket material is pretty hard to find in Europe; I have only one Joe Rocket item myself, the Hammerhead tank bag, which is one of the best motorcycling-things I ever bought!

  • NOCHnoch

    I’ve always associated Joe Rocket with huge logos and squids, but I’m kinda overjoyed to be wrong!

    Does the jacket have armor pockets, and if so, will they fit D30?

    • Jonny Langston

      Yeah it’s ready for armor. If D30 is the JR brand, then it should fit fine.
      Check w/ them before purchasing.

  • Reid

    This jacket looks fantastic. Shame it doesn’t come with the armor for shoulders, elbows, etc. It kind of ceases to be a value proposition at that point when you can get a good mesh jacket with all that for around the same price. However, those mesh jackets are often festooned with logos, whereas this looks nice and clean. ^.^

    • Jonny Langston

      Agreed. Still baffled as to why these co’s even sell “motorcycle” jackets w/out the armor… seems like a cheap bait-and-switch

      • Reid

        Well, look at it this way: I guess $300-ish is not a bad price to pay for a sorta nice leather jacket that LOOKS like a motorcycle jacket if the buyer is not a motorcyclist.

      • Steve

        “Bait-and-switch”??? Pretty groundless accusation for an editor — 95% of all Harley jackets come withOUT armor. Most “retro” or “casual” jackets come without armor but have pockets for optional armor … it’s common.

        • Jonny Langston

          I know it’s a rather common practice – kinda why it’s confounding. I shouldn’t have taken that shot at Joe Rocket only – it applies to many gear mfrs.
          It’s still a great leather jacket, no doubt.

          • Steve

            Thanks for that Johny. BTW, for an extra $50 anyone can armor the ’92 up with full C.E. approved pads and the jacket is still under $400.

          • Piglet2010

            To be fair, even some riding suits such as the Aerostich Roadcrafter Light do not include armor (but will be shipped with the armor installed if you order it at the same time).

      • Davidabl2

        To sell them to cruiser riders who really don’t think that armor is cool. Seriously, no “snarkiness” intended.

  • appliance5000

    Good looking jacket but I’m not sure how functional a cotton liner is: no insulation value, relatively short lasting, and once it’s wet or damp it will stay that way.

  • BryonCLewis

    I’ve had a Joe Rocket Sonic 2.0 for a couple years until it was too large and then bought a Joe Rocket Super Ego. I like the fact that both jackets can serve me in temperatures from 30 degrees to 90 degrees. The Super Ego is now too big on me and I’m looking for another all around leather jacket that won’t completely break the bank. I like the feature of both the Sonic and Super Ego that I can remove the outer leather panels and have mesh underneath. Are there any other leather jackets that have similar capabilities?

  • Clint Keener

    Racing stripes on jackets = nope. Looks like something you would find at Marshals or Kohls.

    • Davidabl2

      If they’re like the ones on other JR jackets they are night-reflective. And in daylight the contrast stripe makes you much more visible…So yeah while the stripes may not be cool they’re functional.

      Just be glad it doesn’t have Joe Rocket logos all over it, because nothing says “squid” as much as Joe Rocket logos;-)

      • Piglet2010

        I thought squid wear was a Shoei lid and tank top?

        • Davidabl2

          Only in summer,I believe.

  • Swisser

    The River Road Scout is a far better package, and cheaper. Has infinite amount of pockets, great wind protection and comes with armor, and fits (with minor cutting) D30 armor. I searched high and wide for the all-around, sub-$300 best jacket, and this is it. Of course, you can have it in any color, as long as it’s black.

    • Joe Bielski

      I really do like the look of that River Road Scout Jacket, but WTF?? Smallest size is a 40???? :S

      • Swisser

        Yeah, seems they’re catering to the average cruiser rider, which means 40-something with a bit of paunch. I went with the 40, and at 5’9″ with a 44″ chest, it fits perfectly.

        • Joe Bielski

          Maybe I’ll try the women’s version on….

  • Ben W

    After finding out that the super-expensive Dainese Speed Naked jacket uses leather that’s only 0.8mm thick, I’m a lot more forgiving of the lack of armor at this price point.

  • Kr Tong

    Two things:
    1. You’re fooling yourself if you think no logos, blacked out, and casual/retro is less conspicuous than a leather race suit from the nineties. It’s still a motorcycle jacket. You think if astronauts wore space suits from the 60s they would be more understated?

    2. 300 without armor is on par with most leather armored jackets. Top end is 600. How much is elbows, shoulders, back, and chest? $200? Just buy what fits.

    And here’s the thing about motorcycle hear: it lasts forever. If you crash in it, insurance replaces it.

  • Stuki

    On pockets, the less one carries in them, the better during a crash. Being stabbed by a key or bruised by a wallet, cellphone or gun doesn’t exactly make crashing a more palatable proposition. If things more substantial than a billfold or a credit card do need to be carried, at least do so in the standard pockets backed by a the soft (on most Americans) belly.

  • Jason 1199

    I have a great joe rocket high vis helmet and decent Phoenix mesh jacket. My rule of thumb for joe rocket is they make some of the best sub $250 gear but spending more than that you’re better off going with a European brand, assuming you don’t need an American style fit. If you can find one of sale it’s hard to beat Roland Sands jackets since you’re buying optional armor anyways

  • Kirk Roy

    Joe Rocket lost me as a customer around 2000 when I replaced my old aerostich roadcrafter (that no longer fit my expanding girth) with 2 complete sets of joe rocket gear, one set of 3 season textile gear (pants/jacket) and one set of mesh/leather gear (pants/jacket). 4 pieces of Joe Rocket gear cost a bunch less than getting another roadcrafter and the hard drive jacket/pants reviewed well. Unfortunately every single item had to be replaced under warranty as it started falling apart immediately (seams coming undone, leather fading, snaps coming off). Of the replacement stuff the mesh/leather jacket (reactor) stayed in good shape for several years but the other 3 pieces were just as crappy as the first stuff. I ended up saving up for another roadcrafter, which is still in great shape after ~10 years/200k miles. The Joe Rocket stuff from around 2000 was not made for daily riders. I hope they’ve improved their quality but, if not, buying their stuff is false economy.

    • Piglet2010

      The Joe Rocket Phoenix jacket and pants I have have held up pretty well, but the zipper on the Alter Ego pants blew out and the hook & loop had to be re-sewn on a pair of gloves, with less than 12 months total use. So very hit and miss in my experience.

      The girth issue on my Roadcrafter Light was fixed by Aerostich by adding gussets (for $75).

  • E Brown

    People think that was the style back in 1992?!

  • Jeff Lawrence

    Does anyone own this jacket? I am wondering what it is like as far as body temp. Would you wear it on a 90 degree summer day.