by "Smalls" for webBikeWorld.com
A well-constructed, stylish leather jacket with elbow
and shoulder protection for the fashion-conscious rider.
Cut specifically for a woman’s body, the Joe Rocket Jet
Set Jacket also has adjustability through the waist for
a custom fit.
The Variable Flow ventilation system and
a removable insulated vest provide flexibility for
warmer or cooler weather.
Vibrant color and attention to
detail provide feminine styling without being “too
girly” (a common complaint from female riders).
At the risk of stereotyping, most women
like to shop. I said most, and I definitely fit in the
category of "loves to shop".
I am like a great Safari
hunter; however my jungle is brick and tile. Mapping my
way through stores and websites, I stalk my prey, and if
it’s on sale…even better.
And if that perfect item is on
clearance? I just might do a victory dance right there
in the aisle (I’m not kidding!).
The Joe Rocket Jet Set Jacket is
currently on closeout, which
means CLEARANCE, but I am getting ahead of myself...
Protection is Important
It is so important to wear the proper gear -- every time
-- when riding.
If you feel differently, all you have to
do is search
online for pictures of motorcycle accident victims. One
picture of someone's flayed skin with exposed muscle was enough to convince me. My
apologies for the visuals – I think I am feeling a bit
So why don’t all riders wear protective clothing? Well,
there’s this crazy thing called choice, and
unfortunately some choose comfort (i.e., no gear) over safety.
If vanity comes into play (which I’ll admit it has for
me -- look for an upcoming Scorpion Savannah pant
review), looks usually trump safety, unfortunately.
And how silly is that, considering the purpose of the gear?
From a woman's point of view, there’s also the lack of availability of women’s gear in
motorcycle shops. If a guy tells me one more time to try a
men’s small, I will scream! Although it might be fun to
see their reaction, but I’d rather not go there...
Out of desperation, I once caved and tried some
men’s gear, but the fit was just not
designed specifically for a woman’s body. The torso and
shoulders are usually too big, which means the jacket
will flap around in the wind and the armor will be in the
This is a common issue with women’s
motorcycle clothing items that are simply a
smaller version of the men’s equivalent, and the result
is both improper fit and the appearance of wearing a sack.
And unisex sizes…puh-leease…give it to me straight --
they’re men’s sizes and the only reason women might wear them
is if they
can’t find anything better.
So what's the solution? Gear that is fashionable,
fits well, and offers protection. It sounds too good to
be true, right? Wrong!
Touted as being designed for women by women, Joe Rocket
meets all these requirements with their "Jet Set" line.
And their design staff is even quick to
respond to questions and offer suggestions! I was
blown away by how many times I got help, suggestions,
and pictures from Joe Rocket’s employees and their
product manager. It is evident they care about their
customers and they even went the extra mile to try and
help me find a pair of discontinued pants I was looking for.
By the way, I discovered that Joe Rocket’s Trixie Leather Pants in blue
(which are discontinued and only available in a medium,
but a steal at around $115.00) will not match the blue Joe
Rocket Jet Set Jacket. However, the Joe Rocket Trixie
blue is still available in limited sizes and it would
look hot with the pants.
Jacket Fit Tips
Motorcycle clothing is designed for different uses,
and this is something to consider before making a
Motorcycle jackets are cut longer in the
sleeves and fuller across the back so they fit properly while in
the riding position. For example, touring jackets are normally longer, with multiple
layers to accommodate all types of riding conditions. Sport jackets are usually shorter in the front to
prevent bunching up and longer in the back to provide
coverage when bent over a bike.
Correct fit equates to shoulder and elbow armor resting
where it should -- meaning on the shoulder and elbow, not
below them. The jacket should fit snugly enough to hold
the armor in place; it won’t do your elbow any good if
the armor shifts down to your forearm.
A good fit will
also be close around the waist so air cannot go up into the
jacket. With your arms resting at your sides, the
should extend past the wrists.
Sleeve length is often an issue for me; I generally wear
a size small jacket, but on many jackets the sleeves are
too short before I even reach for handgrips.
However, stepping up to a
medium to fit the sleeve length often translates to the
jacket being too large through the shoulders, which
means the armor isn't located correctly.
Also, it's important to note that even within the same manufacturer, sleeve length
may vary from one style to another. I first noticed this
with Shift brand jackets -- one in size small was just right,
while a size small
in the next style was an inch too short.
Remember that while gear should fit closely, it should not hinder
movement. Try it first, which gives you another excuse to hop on your favorite
bike in the shop. Choose a motorcycle with a similar riding
position to your own bike and, well, assume the
Reach for the bars and notice ease of movement. Does the
jacket feel like it binds? Is it tight across the shoulders?
How is the sleeve length?
If the cuffs rise above the
wrists, consider your glove type -- gauntlet gloves can remedy
this situation and provide coverage for the wrists.
While you're in the riding position, be
sure the back of the jacket is long enough to cover your
waist. Why? Well, if you’re on a sport
bike, there are other…issues that come into play --
let's just say that this is another time to just say no
Leather really does offer some of the best protection
you can find. Not that thin fashion
leather, mind you, but thick, quality leather that's at least 1.0 mm
thick. Remember this will be the only thing
between you and the pavement, so this is not a place to
Leather is also windproof, extremely durable, and
it (usually) softens over time; once worn in, you won’t want to part
with it. Did I mention bug guts also wipe off easily?
(L) Joe Rocket Jet Set Jacket shoulder armor. (R)
Jet Set Jacket armor set.
The Joe Rocket Jet Set Jacket
The Joe Rocket Jet Set Jacket has
great fit, function, and fashion -- and there are also
matching gloves! According to the Joe Rocket sizing chart, I
would need a size medium jacket, but the small fits well.
Let’s start with the basics; the Jet Set Jacket is
made from 1.2
to 1.4 mm thick cowhide. This thickness should provide
protection in case of a slide. Even though the leather
is thick, the jacket is not restrictive and it's quite
Princess seams and double darts create a flattering
shape and provide ample room for someone with a figure
(ahem, larger than average cup size). Whether the
removable vest was in or out, I had plenty of wiggle
room in the jacket and could still fit a sweatshirt
underneath. Of course, the Jet Set jacket is a little roomier
with the insulating liner vest removed.
The waist has a large degree of adjustability, made
possible with two 7” (17.75 cm) long and 1-¼” (3.2 cm)
wide leather straps on each side which run from the
front pockets to the princess seams in the rear. Cinch the
jacket in to show off curves; let it out when sitting on
a bike so the jacket doesn’t ride up.
Raglan sleeves -- which are popular in sport wear and
extend fully to the collar -- allow ease of movement. Joe
Rocket pre-curves their sleeves which also makes for a
riding position because the rider is not
working against the fabric or leather.
The Jet Set Jacket has textile-stretch panels that run
the entire length of the sleeves on the inside of the
arm, which creates both pros and cons. The con is
that during cold days, the panel allows more airflow; the pro is
during hot days, when the panel allows more air flow.
cooler days - around 45-50 degrees F (7-10 Celsius),
layering the Jet Set Jacket with a long-sleeved shirt
was sufficient to keep me warm.
The textile panel is 5 ½” (14 cm) wide at the underarm
this helps to reduce bulk in that area versus all
leather -- and tapers to 1 ¾” (4.5 cm) wide at the wrist. It also stretches slightly to allow for a thicker
sleeve, like a sweatshirt, without being too binding.
|Warm Weather Update (7/09):
With temperatures between 85-90 degrees (29 to
32 Celsius) riding under 60 MPH (96 KPH) I was
too warm, and in stop-and-go traffic, it was
almost unbearable. At speeds over 65 MPH
(104 KPH) I was comfortable.
I now understand how gear can either add to or
prevent fatigue. In stop and go traffic,
when I was hot, I got tired quickly and it
became a distraction.
Add that to a helmet that drills a hole
through my forehead and it’s amazing I stayed on
the road! I’ll be adding a mesh jacket to my
motorcycle wardrobe as soon as possible!”
In warm weather, the breathability of the textile panel
combined with 5” (12.75 cm) zippered vents over the
biceps and two 4 ½” (11.5 cm) zippered vents in the
lower back of the jacket work to keep the rider cool. By
the way, all zippers on the Jet Set Jacket -- both inside
and out -- are YKK brand.
Each sleeve is adorned with two ½” (1.25 cm) wide, white
leather strips and three fashion patches; the top patch
also forms the Joe Rocket logo.
Tapered cuffs fit nicely under gauntlet gloves and
feature a 6” (15.25 cm) opening with a 5 ½” (14 cm)
zipper over a textile flap. A Joe Rocket insignia snap
closes the cuffs and extra snaps are included should the
need for replacement arise.
White piping accents the front of the bodice and white
and reflective piping embellishes the back and provides
some nighttime visibility. The front and back each sport
a large black and white Rocket logo; these would be
even better if reflective.
The Joe Rocket flower also adds subtle, feminine touches
on both the inside and outside of the jacket. The neck
is finished with a banded collar and covered snap.
Two zippered 6” (15.25 cm) front pockets are angled and
easy to reach to warm one’s hands or to store items. Another 6” (15.25 cm) interior zipped pocket is 7”
(17.75 cm) deep, large enough for a cell phone, iPod, or
other small items.
The interior of the Joe Rocket Jet Set Jacket is also
finished. A removable insulated, quilted vest,
made of 100% nylon, is attached with a zipper and
buttons. A permanent 100% polyester mesh lining extends
all the way down the sleeves for comfort and
Joe Rocket Jet Set Jacket insulating liner
Joe Rocket Jet Set Jacket with liner removed
Jet Set jacket also has an 8” (20.25 cm) zipper for pant
attachment; simply sew one side of the zipper to any
pair of riding pants.
Protection during a crash is provided by dual-density
armor in the elbows/forearm and shoulders, along
with a spine pad, which can be replaced with an optional
CE-approved spine protector. There is also a permanent
9 ½” (23.5 cm) by 4 ½” (11.4 cm) foam pad installed in
the bottom of the jacket; this rests over the small of
The protectors and pad were removed
quite easily for the photos, and after seeing them, I
plan on upgrading to CE-approved armor, but here’s where I’m a little (actually, a lot)
After searching online, it appears that
sets of Joe Rocket CE-approved shoulder, elbow, or knee
armor retails for only about $5.00 more than their dual-density pieces. I’d be more than willing to pay an extra
$10 per jacket for a set of CE-approved elbow and
shoulder armor or $5 for a set of knee armor in a pair
of pants to get the CE-approved
armor rather than dual-density protectors.
This tidbit made me concerned about their other jackets,
and I’m happy to announce after checking every women’s
Joe Rocket jacket currently offered through Motorcycle
Superstore, New Enough, and RevZilla, only one other
jacket came with dual density protectors. Joe Rocket’s
twenty-six other jackets listed between those sites come
with CE- approved armor. Good news, indeed.
The Joe Rocket Jet Set Leather Jacket embodies style,
fit, and protection at an affordable price. Add the fact
that it is on closeout – translation: clearance – and it
becomes a steal around $215 to $249.
Every color is
available in limited sizes; Hawaii Blue is available in
all sizes ranging from XS to XXL. Get yours before
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