by Rick K. for webBikeWorld.com
Race gloves with kangaroo palms, double gauntlet and attached pinky finger.
The VeloceGear Primus gloves also have flow-through ventilation in three fingers and the thumb.
High quality, race features and nice styling all at a reasonable price.
The original version of the Veloce Legionnaire motorcycle gloves we reviewed in 2007 were the first gloves produced by the then-new company.
In Part 1 of this two-part series, we described the update to the original Veloce Legionnaire gloves in what we've called "Legionnaire Version 2.0".
Veloce are in the process of filling out their line of motorcycle gloves, and the Primus gloves shown here take their place at the top of the heap.
Veloce also manufactures one- and two-piece leather suits for men; women's "Amazon" (?!) leathers and a limited selection of street clothes.
And coming soon is motorcycle clothing for young riders, along with a few other items to fill out the product line.
The company also continues the Latin naming convention and Roman themes, which seems like an interesting and appropriate strategy for something like protective motorcycle clothing.
As we noted in our review of the updated Legionnaire gloves, Veloce seems to be working hard to improve their products and I'm sure the same will be said for their ever-expanding line of motorcycle leathers and other clothing.
So what do the "top-of-the-line" Primus gloves give you for the extra 90 bucks?
The construction and quality of the Primus gloves are both similar to the less expensive Legionnaire gloves, so no compromises there for either type.
But the Primus model features high-end touches like kangaroo palms with smaller Schoeller Keprotec wear pads for improved grip feel (but larger Keprotec layers on the outer edge and heel of the palm).
Also, a double gauntlet with two ends that fold over each other and attach with hook-and-loop; race-style attached pinky finger and forced-air ventilation on the first three fingers and gloves.
It was a surprise to find that the Primus gloves use what appears to be thermoplastic urethane (TPU) for the top, middle and base knuckle protectors.
TPU is claimed to have excellent abrasion resistance, but I suppose from force of habit, we were expecting the carbon fiber that is used on the Legionnaire gloves instead.
I have no idea which is better and I have no intention of testing it in a crash, thus I'll have to leave it up to the Primus glove designers to choose the best protection for their best race glove, so TPU it is.
The TPU protectors covering the middle knuckle on the thumb and first, second and third finger are vented. Screen covered openings actually do flow air through the glove leather, through the fabric liner and through a small hole into the glove.
The effect is much more apparent on an unfaired motorcycle than when riding behind a fairing.
Although the full lining in the Primus gloves is comfortable, I prefer no lining in race-style gloves for added feel, especially when they feature kangaroo palms.
Nevertheless, the Primus model apparently uses the same form, or last, as the revised Legionnaire gloves, resulting in a roomy fit that appears to run about 1.25 sizes large.
The white and black gloves shown here are labeled as a size M, but fit much like a broken-in size large on my hands; my hands are just over the size large borderline.
Like the Legionnaire Version 2 gloves, the Primus gloves utilize a new fingertip construction resulting in plenty of room to the thick-fingered.
The kangaroo palms are connected to the underside of the fingers with a single line of external stitching, and the kangaroo extends very slightly, about 1-2 mm beyond the bottom of the leather on the finger, as you can see in the following photograph:
The leather surrounding the outside of the fingertips is one continuous piece, as on the Legionnaire gloves; this can also be seen in the photo above.
This type of finger construction is harder to fabricate but removes any seams from the sensitive fingertip area, which is a definite bonus.
Not many gloves have this feature because it probably isn't something the general glove-wearing population would notice -- until they feel the chafing at the fingertips.
But webBikeWorlders know different, and I'm sure our readers will appreciate the subtle but smart engineering that goes into this design!
The main knuckle protector floats on a separate section of leather that is padded on the underside.
However, my hands must be slightly out of proportion to the Primus gloves, because when I bend my hand, my knuckles bump up against the front of the knuckle protector, just missing the central molded portion.
This isn't that noticeable, but the protector also feels slightly narrower than the carbon fiber protector on the Legionnaire gloves, which provide more comfort in this area.
This makes the Primus feel just slightly tighter when I'm on the grips than I'd prefer.
So if I had my druthers (That's 19th Century American slang for 'would rather'!), I'd prefer to swap out the carbon fiber on the Legionnaire for the TPU on the Primus.
Don't let the vents on the Primus main knuckle protectors fool you either -- they're vented, but the air has nowhere to go because the protector is attached to the floating section of leather. So the air does not penetrate through the rest of the glove body and on to the hand.
These are relatively minor nitpicks that many riders may not notice and they shouldn't dissuade anyone from this very nice pair of gloves.
The Primus gloves also have a very nicely made flexible leather accordion in the back of the thumb, which provides flexibility to the glove when grabbing the bars.
Also, the Primus gloves have the same horizontally cut sections just under the floating main knuckle protector as the Legionnaire glove. This provides good fore/aft flexibility to the hand also.
It's interesting to note that the Legionnaire gloves also have an additional section of flexible accordion-style leather pleats just in back of the gauntlet, which provides even more flexibility in this area.
Other than that, the Primus gloves have the same 1.2 mm thick leather used in the Legionnaire. Both are very nice, high-quality gloves and choosing between the two is difficult indeed.
The Veloce Primus gloves have a few added attractions when compared to the less expensive Legionnaire gloves, including the kangaroo leather palms, vented fingers and attached 3rd and 4th fingers for racing.
The quality and construction of both pair is excellent.
In the end, however, we're not convinced that for street riding or even track days that the Legionnaire isn't the better deal of the two.
Part 1: Veloce Legionnaire Gloves Review