British Motorcycle Gear
BMG Rapido Gloves
British Motorcycle Gear BMG "Rapido" Motorcycle Gloves Review
by Rick for webBikeWorld.com
Motorcycle Glove Reviews | Owner
Summary: High quality gloves with all the right features
at an amazingly low price. Secret vent holes make a difference in
warm weather (details below) and the triple wrist attachment keeps
British Motorcycle Gear has
been around long enough now to call it an institution.
Hard-core Britbike owners know BMG as the American go-to
Knox armor, Barbour jackets and motorcycle clothing of
classic British design.
But there's more than that;
they've recently started offering the classic made-in-the-UK Halcyon goggles, which,
as any reader of the monthly classic British bike
magazines will tell you, are de rigueur perched
atop a Davida Jet helmet, which are also now available
We've reviewed a number of
products sourced from British Motorcycle Gear over the
years; a selection that includes products as diverse as
Knox Stowaway back protector, the ultra-classic
Barbour International waxed cotton jacket and the
BMG Zodiac, one of my favorite lightweight
But not everyone owns a Thruxton or
wants to dress the part of a '50's Leather Boy (a
interesting and very surprising film, by the way),
so BMG also offers a good selection of modern gear,
including their own line of motorcycle gloves.
In fact, my experience with
the retailer started many years ago with a
pair of Belstaff winter gloves purchased from them. Those
gloves were my favorite for cold-weather riding and they
served me well for many seasons.
Thus, the BMG Rapido gloves
bring me full circle, so to speak. They're as modern as
can be, all decked out with carbon fiber and Schoeller
Keprotec and the bright red contrasting leather shown in
these photos. Vintage bike jockeys can buy a pair
in all black to
wear with their
Schott leather jackets and maybe no one will notice
the high-tech juxtaposition. Just make sure you
put the sleeve over, rather than under the gauntlet.
By the way, we also have a pair of the
BMG Thermosport winter
gloves to review, which are similar to the Rapido version
but with insulation, and I'll
report back on them when the weather cools down enough
to use them.
Fit and Finish
I wasn't sure what to expect
with either pair, because they both carry the same list price of only
$79.00! Don't tell BMG, but I'll bet they could
sell these babies for at
least 100 bucks more, because the quality, the
materials, the stitching and features are right up
there with some of the best gloves that have ever
graced my grubby mitts.
The Rapido gloves are made
from "Grade A semi-aniline leather"; aniline being a
treatment that colors the leather all the way through,
so "only the best quality hides can be used", according
to the definition. The leather used in the Rapido
gloves feels robust, so they should have no problem
protecting the hands when necessary.
All of the leather and
Keprotec panels, the padding, the stitching and even the
various colors on the red and black variety shown here
has been put together with care and it all looks great
and gives the impression of serious quality.
They fit pretty well also,
with plenty of room in the fingers. The size large
gloves do seem to run just a touch larger than what
seems to be the norm recently. They fit like size large
gloves used to fit, instead of the too-tight sizing
standard that has apparently been adopted by the
motorcycle glove industry as of late.
I'm not sure what's up with
the glove manufacturers lately; some of the gloves that
have come through here recently are running much tighter
than expected -- up to a full size smaller, in fact -- so a "normal" sized
glove is a welcome treat. I much prefer the
slightly loose fit that also provides the correct amount
of room in the fingertips.
The Rapido gloves are
correctly proportioned for their size, and the finger
length feels right with a touch of extra room in the
tips. The thumbs may be just a hair longer than
normal, but again, this is better than too short.
The fingers on a pair of
motorcycle gloves should feel slightly long, because the
extra room is necessary to allow for the hands to be wrapped around the hand
The lining of the Rapido
gloves is relatively comfortable,
with just a seam here and there that I can feel, but
overall I'd say the Rapido gloves are about as comfortable as
I've experienced in a race-style
Venting and Air Flow
Motorcycle glove manufacturers of late must be sourcing
these rubber-rimmed vent holes from the same supplier,
because they're showing up on just about every glove
To be honest, this type of
vent seems more for show than go. The theory is
good I suppose, but I'm not fond of the rubber, because
it will probably grind itself to dust in the first few
seconds of a get-off.
And so far, I haven't found
a one that's good at ventilation; the problem is the lining, which in almost every
instance backs the vent opening and blocks any air from
entering the glove.
That's also the case with the Rapido gloves; I can blow into the vent holes while
wearing the gloves and feel no air at all coming
through. So why bother? If they're not going
to flow any air, I'd just as soon
have a hunk of carbon fiber or more protection instead.
The perforations on the
gauntlet do seem to allow a modicum of ventilation, but
a solid fabric
jacket sleeve worn underneath mitigates this to
The real secret is the tiny
holes popped into the sides of the fingers, which do
allow air to flow in -- and out. I didn't notice
them at first, but I can definitely feel air coming
through and it makes a difference.
Perforations can sometimes
cause weak spots in the leather, but I'm not worried
about the few holes in the sides of each finger, because
that area is probably one of the most hidden or
protected anyway and it isn't a part of the glove that
one would expect to act as an abrasion surface.
The rubber vent holes
notwithstanding, overall I find the Rapido gloves to be
more comfortable than I imagined in hot weather.
Of course, they're not really designed as hot weather
gloves, but I've worn them in temperatures reaching the high 80's
(29-31 C) and they don't feel any better or worse than
many of the
fully perforated summer gloves I own, most of which have
a lining that blocks the air from flowing anyway.
Add some carbon fiber,
leather swatches and other forms of protection that is
required for safety and the air flow will be blocked no
matter what the glove backing material is made from, so
I'd much rather opt for full leather race protection
instead of a pair of flimsy summer gloves that end up
costing about as much as these anyway.
In addition to the substantial leather and the Keprotec,
the Rapido gloves have a split carbon fiber knuckle
protector that floats on a separate leather section that
is double-stitched on to the back of the gloves.
The two-piece carbon fiber unit is a good idea, because
it allows more flexibility than a single piece would
while providing similar levels of protection.
Safety features abound, with
a large single-piece swath of leather covering the palm
and running up the heel of the hand and along the little
finger. The Keprotec lines the palm and
there's plenty of double stitching all around.
The back of each finger is
covered with a separate pieces of leather to protect the
knuckles, and the thumb and first three fingers have
padding sewn in over the tops of the fingertips.
You can see in the photos that the gloves also feature
an accordion-like stretch section between the base and
middle knuckle for added flexibility.
The fingertip ends use a
modified box section construction, with blind stitches;
a costly and time-consuming sewing procedure found on
better gloves. We took a couple of close-up photos
and you can see the thought and the care that went into
The gloves are secured with
a wrist strap that attaches underneath, below the heel
of the hand, and the strap is covered by a leather flap
to protect it.
The gauntlet is a single
piece tube that has enough room to fit over a jacket
sleeve. It features a large patch of hook-and-loop
material on the underside, and two separate covering
sections start on the back of the wrist and fold over
the underside of the wrist to form the three layers of
We arranged the glove in the
photo above to illustrate the system. You can see
that the final layer on the left is leather, which
covers the arrangement and protects the hook-and-loop.
This type of system may take a
second or two longer to get it wrapped around the wrist, but it offers more protection
and when it's properly fastened, the combination of the
wrist closure and the gauntlet definitely keeps the
gloves in place -- I can not pull them off my hands,
which is exactly what is required in a good, protective
motorcycle glove and which is unfortunately not the case
The British Motorcycle Gear Rapido gloves have all of
the safety features of the best modern motorcycle race
gloves, along with outstanding fit, finish and quality,
all at a price that's almost unbelievable. And the
gloves come with a one-year warranty. I don't
think you'll find a better pair of gloves at twice the
price, so my advice is to grab a pair before they wise
Product Review: British Motorcycle Gear Rapido Motorcycle Gloves
Retail Price: $79.00
|Colors: Red/Black and Black
Sizes: XS - XXL
August 2008 Notes: Gloves provided by BMG for this
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►Your Comments and
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Comments are ordered from most recent to oldest.
Not all comments will be published (details
). Comments may be edited for
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From "I.H." (05/11): "Nice! I
like them, until... it started raining. I took them
off and my hands were RED!!"
From "Bo" (7/09): "I've now had the
gloves for a few thousand miles and want to post a
review. Thanks again for the great deal.
Here you go:
Let me preface my review by noting that I have spent
thirty years in the Quality Assurance field in different
manufacturing environments, so I tend to scrutinize
products through the proverbial microscope.
In my opinion these gloves are the best value on the
market. I was looking for a full-protection,
no-compromise, gauntlet glove at a reasonable price, and
the only one that met these requirements was the Rapido.
I looked at them all, from Alpinestars to Rocket but
none could measure up feature for feature and still be
cost competitive. It will cost at least $50 more
to get the same features from another brand. Check
the quantity and quality of the protective features on
this glove and you'll see what I mean.
The stitching on my gloves is impeccable, but I thought
it might be because I bought them from (the)
webBikeWorld (garage sale) and BMG would surely send the
best they had for a review. A friend bought a pair
directly from BMG after he wore mine and they were every
bit as nice as mine. BMG must have gotten the
stitching issue under control.
I've worn the gloves in the rain and in temperature from
25 degrees to 85. They are obviously warmer than a
mesh glove, but by no means unbearable, and the finger
vents actually worked well for me. The fact that
they didn't turn my fingers black in the rain was an
added bonus. The fingers are slightly long for me,
but not enough to cause me to downgrade them, and that
has improved as they form to my hands.
In closing, if you are looking for a similar style
glove, you owe it to yourself to try BMG."
From "D.G." (2/09): "1. I purchased
my BMG Rapido gloves in November. Within 25 rides
the stitching holding one of the floppy gauntlet flaps
failed while donning my Rapidos. If the stitching
is not robust enough to handle me pulling on the glove
for the 25th time, how can I trust it to hold together
when asphalt yanks it at 25 MPH? I appreciate the
Rapido's thick leather and ergonomic design, but the
stitching undermines the glove.
2. BMG's customer service has thus far been a
pleasure to work with, and I will be refunded my money
when they receive the returned gloves."
From "R.S." (8/08): "I read the
review of the gloves and I decided to take a try and buy
them. When I received them I noticed the left hand
index finger threading was pulled apart. I gently
lifted the loose leather and I can tell the treading on
this glove would be a problem down the road. I
would say the material is up to speck, but the stitching
on the extra leather for the fingers may be a problem.
Gloves go back."
Follow-up from "R.S.":
"Follow up: BMG was quick to follow up and are sending a
new pair of gloves......good service. BMG (also
made up for) my troubles. I will definitely look
at the rest of BMG products with service like that!"