Frank Thomas Gloves
Frank Thomas "Rage" Motorcycle
by Brandon Jackson for webBikeWorld.com.
| Owner Comments (Below)
Summary: The Frank Thomas Rage gloves include many safety
features and look good.
The price is reasonable but the quality may need to be addressed.
Frank Thomas may not be the first name you think of for
motorcycle apparel, but regulars of the Cycle Gear chain
have probably seen the name.
Frank Thomas is also apparently well known in the UK as
I have seen numerous adverts in British bike magazines.
Since I am one of those Cycle Gear regulars, I've been
curious about some of the reasonably priced gear bearing
the Frank Thomas brand.
In this case, I was looking for a pair of gloves to
replace my favorite Joe Rocket Reactor street gloves.
The only shortcoming I find with the Reactor gloves is
the lack of a gauntlet for better protection.
Frank Thomas makes a variety of street gloves from short
cuff to what I would consider an amateur track day or
aggressive street type of glove.
The Frank Thomas glove that I found interesting is
called the Rage. The Rage glove fits that
aggressive street/occasional track day segment, with
good protective features as well as the use of Kangaroo
leather for the palm area and underside of the fingers.
Let's take a closer look.
As you can see in the photos, there are a several
protective features on these gloves. To start, a
large carbon fiber molded protector over the knuckles
should offer good protection. The downside is that
this type of carbon fiber protector can be uncomfortable
if not molded properly.
With the Rage gloves, the protector is noticeable, but
not uncomfortable after a couple of hours riding.
It helps too that the glove is lined inside over the
back of the hand and under the knuckle protector.
A second bit of carbon fiber can be found on the top of
the wrist towards the inside, which is designed to
protect that particular area. Although it may seem
like an unlikely spot for impact, the protector doesn't
get in the way, so the fact that it’s there is probably
Additionally, under the heel of the palm is this fibrous
sort of material that should provide an abrasive
resistant surface to protect the hands in case of a
slide. It seems well located for this purpose, but
its soft design makes it appear that it's a one-trick
pony. One slide looks like it would destroy this
piece, but better it than your skin.
On to the fingers and you'll find a little button of
rubber and an extra piece of leather on each knuckle
except for the index finger, where instead can be found
some nice soft material with “Frank Thomas” embroidered
My feeling is I would appreciate a little armor love for
my index finger rather than be shown the name of the
maker who has decided my index finger isn't as important
as the others. The thumb does get a bit of rubber
armor on the back as well.
Something to note about the rubber pieces on the
knuckles: although the larger sections between the main
and first knuckle have ventilation holes, the leather
underneath does not appear to be perforated to allow air
Neither a flashlight nor blowing through the perforated
areas revealed any sort of path for airflow. As
such, these gloves are so far good in moderate temps,
but come summer, they may get a bit hot (and to answer
this, Frank Thomas does make an "Air Rage" glove with
more venting and similar features).
So, combine all these protective features, extra swaths
of leather in key abrasion areas, lots of double
stitching, and the Rage gloves look good from the
protective standpoint. I'm giving it a "very good"
rating for protective features.
Wrist strap open (L) and closed (R).
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Sizing, Fit and Comfort
I am a solid medium size in most manufacturers' gloves,
and so far a medium in Joe Rocket, Olympia, Icon, and
Alpinestars all seem to fit me well.
The Frank Thomas Rage gloves run very similar to the
brands mentioned, perhaps a little more on the relaxed
side like the Joe Rocket gloves than the more
Now the real party piece for me with the Rage gloves is
the kangaroo leather in the palm area. This is my
first pair of gloves that make use of kangaroo leather
and I understand now why it's praised so much. It
provides good protection with less bulk and gives you
better feel at the grips due to its thinner yet still
One thing I found odd at first is that the Rage gloves
do give great feel for controls on the bike, but the
tips of the index and middle fingers are covered with an
extra square of leather. This ends up making it a
bit of a challenge to operate intercoms and other small
devices -- that is until you learn to use your other two
fingers to operate these devices.
The gauntlet is a reasonable size and has a dual closure
with two generous portions of hook and loop fastener
attaching the flaps underneath the wrist.
The gauntlet could be larger in diameter since I don't
get quite as much area of hook and loop fastener mated
up as I would prefer for the best security. Still,
it holds and has never come undone during use, but I
have not had the unlucky opportunity to crash test it
The wrist closure strap that helps keep the gloves from
sliding off in a crash is also secured with hook and
loop fastener that actually has a decent sized contact
area. What I don't like is the placement of the
strap being on top of the wrist where it can get bunched
up as the wrist is rolled upward, which happens when
rolling on the throttle. This is not an uncommon
way to place this strap, but having worn designs that
place the strap under the wrist I may be a bit spoiled.
Comfort is a bit of a mixed bag here, but not only for
the usual reasons. What I mean is that any glove
that offers a lot of protection is going to suffer a bit
in the "supple and comfy" feeling department. Due
to its nature of being tough enough to save your hand,
it's probably going to need to be a little hard in
In this way, the Rage gloves actually perform well.
The molded knuckle protector, the extra bit of molded
carbon fiber on top of the wrist, the "slide on me"
patch on the heel of the palm all seem to keep their
presence relatively subdued.
Where the comfort is compromised is both in the finish
and design aspects. There are a couple of issues
that let the Rage gloves down and that will be discussed
in the next section. As it stands, I'm giving them
a "good" for fit and comfort based on the pair I have
Note the inconsistencies in manufacturing in the
placement of the carbon fiber on each glove.
Quality and Finish
The design of the Rage gloves when just looking at them
seems to make a lot of sense. They offer
protection in the right places, make use of that great
kangaroo leather, and seemed like a bargain at the
$79.00 sale price I paid for them (the list price is
But put them on and wear them for a while and you'll
begin to wonder who at Frank Thomas actually wore
them while riding a motorcycle.
For starters, the gloves are partially lined inside.
The palm has direct contact with the kangaroo leather
and that feels good. The back of the hand as
mentioned earlier has a layer of a soft material between
it and the leather. The way the fingers are
stitched using hidden seams does give them a nice clean
look on the outside, but that also means your fingers
are going to feel the edges of all the leather that was
Also, if you look at the pictures of the underside of
the fingers, you will see a bit of expansion type
leather bits at the base of the fingers. I haven't
been able to view exactly what these look like from the
inside, but they are not smooth against the finger which
is pressing the bit against the grip. While not a
deal breaker by any stretch, the interior of the fingers
in the Rage gloves aren't the most comfortable.
To make matters worse the fingers seem to be a bit short
depending what day of the week the gloves were made.
Seriously, I tried on several pairs of the same, red,
medium, Rage gloves and had a different fitting
experience with each one of them.
For example, the gloves pictured here are actually the
second set I purchased. The first set was returned
to my local Cycle Gear store for an exchange.
While the first set seemed to fit OK from a sizing
standpoint, in actual riding, the right hand pinky
finger had to try and flex the protector on it to curl
around the grip.
For some reason, the way the glove was sewn, the
protector was sliding over the side of the finger,
making it hard to curl, and making it uncomfortable to
move as the material inside was abrading my skin.
The fact the left glove didn't do this made me think
this is just a one-off issue so I went to the shop to
return the "defective" glove.
This is where it got interesting. I plucked out
every pair of red medium Rage gloves I could find and
tried them on, about 5 pairs in all. They all fit
With some pairs the fingers were noticeably shorter to
where my fingers were pushing the end of the finger box
when I curled them. Other pairs were roomier.
One pair had an index and middle finger that fit
correctly, but the ring and pinky were too short, an
issue found only on the right hand glove!
Now I understood -- my little "twisted pinky" first pair
of gloves was more the norm than the aberration.
The bargain I was getting on kangaroo leather plus lots
of protection plus reasonable good looks was suffering
from inconsistent workmanship.
By trying on the multiple pairs of gloves, I was able to
match up gloves from two different pairs and make a
decent, fit well, matched set. I really wanted to
have my glove and eat, or rather wear it too. I
paired back up the all the other gloves and left with my
newly paired gloves determined to be happy with them.
In spite of all that has been said about the finish, the
durability of the gloves seems to be at least on par
with the other brands mentioned above. Despite
being inconsistent in the way the various pieces of the
glove are assembled, the actual assembly seems rather
I think if Frank Thomas could tighten up quality
control, they would have a very competitive pair of
gloves for the sub $100.00 range. So where does
this put the quality and finish? "Needs
improvement" is the best answer I can give here.
The Frank Thomas Rage Gloves are beauty that is
unfortunately only skin deep. They have all the
safety features, they look good (at first), and the
price is reasonable. Start paying attention to
details though and the beauty can turn ugly fast.
Does this mean that they won't protect well? I
think they may do fine for protection assuming the
inconsistent manufacturing doesn’t affect the
durability. Out of all the gloves I currently
have, these are the ones I hope I'm wearing if I do have
But I would not recommend making a purchase without
first trying on the pair you plan to buy.
wBW Product Review: Frank
Thomas Rage Motorcycle Gloves
||List Price: $99.99
Black with blue, green, red or white.
Sizes: S - XXL
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►Your Comments and
Please send comments to
Comments are ordered from most recent to oldest.
Not all comments will be published (details
). Comments may be edited for
clarity prior to publication.
From "S.G." (11/10): "In
response to your review of the Frank Thomas Rage gloves,
I would like to add a comment validating your review.
I recently went to the Cycle Gear in Houston looking for
a decent set of street gloves. I tried on a few pairs of
Frank Thomas gloves in the $70 - $130 price range and
was not impressed.
Although comfortable, it was easy to spot poor stitching
issues (as noted in the review) on every pair. The
finger stitching was almost always uneven; at least two
pairs I looked at had missing or loose stitching where
one or more fingers were already coming apart.
At the risk of sounding overly critical; even a quick
glance at the stitching on a Frank Thomas glove when set
next to a Fieldsheer or Alpinestars in the same price
range makes this a no-brainer.
Looks aside, remember the main reason for purchasing
decent gloves. In the event of an unplanned pavement
durability test, these are not the gloves I would want
protecting my hands. I recently found your website on
Bing; I love it! Keep up the good work. Thanks."
From "B.W." (4/10): "I must be the
exception; my Rage gloves were uncomfortable at first,
but have broken in beautifully... with the exception of
my Arai Vector helmet, they are now my favorite piece of
From "A.F." (4/09): "Here are the
provided pics of the gloves. After being disgusted
for the lack of quality control these were exchanged for
a set of Alpinestars GP-2s which are in great condition
after nearly 9k miles and a very awkward California
fall, winter, and spring."
From "N.C." (4/09): "I read your
article about the Frank Thomas brand with interest and
agreed with your conclusion. We to in England
figure if Frank Thomas tightened up their quality
control and actually try on their own gloves for
testing, they would see where their quality control
I for one bought a pair of really good gloves from their
range 2-3 years ago at a price of £65 they were great
both supple and warm, the fit was great to but with in a
week of having them I sent them back as the inner lining
came out when your hand became, moist from being to
warm. After 3 exchanges I just got my money back
and moved onto Hein Gericke products."
From "A.F." (3/09): "I had purchased
a set of these gloves back in Sept of '08. I
agreed the kangaroo leather is leaps and bounds much
more supple then traditional cowhide. I
experienced a more serious form of quality control
mishap. The stitching holding the Velcro secure
straps on my gloves unraveled after only a week and a
half of use!"