The Frank Thomas Antifreeze Neck Guard
by Bill C. for webBikeWorld
More wBW Heated Motorcycle Clothing Reviews
We've had a very mild winter here in the Mid-Atlantic region.
And even though spring is still officially a couple of weeks away, the temperature outside right now is 77 degrees Fahrenheit (25C).
So it may seem like a strange time to write about a wind blocking neck warmer, but who knows what the rest of March will bring?
Besides, spring in the northern hemisphere means fall "down under", so there should certainly be a motorcyclist somewhere who will benefit by this information!
Before we start, I thought I might take a moment to recap the various wind blocking or windproof clothing articles that are available on webBikeWorld.
We ran an extensive review of the Biker's Comfort in Action and Rukka windproof underwear (review) a few years ago, and that information is still valid, although the designs and styling may have changed slightly over time.
Actually, that's good news, because it means that the clothing must work if they're still selling it after all this time.
There are a few more webBikeWorld reviews you may wish to consider if you're in the market for wind block clothing.
We've been using the Windjammer helmet wind blocker (review) for some time on a variety of helmets.
It attaches to the bottom of a full-face helmet and prevents some of the air and turbulence from getting up underneath. It can also help to decrease noise levels in some instances.
The NOJ Quiet Rider is like a more advanced version of the Windjammer.
It can be semi-permanently attached to a helmet and includes a longer wind block neck warmer. It can also help decrease helmet noise levels, although we had mixed results with this feature.
Let's see -- there's also the EDZ neck warmer (review), which is a simple stretchy tube that helps keep some of the cold air from chilling a rider's neck, but it isn't really windproof.
This product is also claimed to help keep a rider cool in the summer, and we hope to give it a try once the weather gets cooking.
Finally, there's EDZ motorcycle underwear (review), a full-length "Long John" type suit that can be worn under leathers in summer for wicking away moisture, or as a base layer in winter.
I have mixed feelings on that one, because I'm always trying to reduce the amount of time it takes me to get suited up, and climbing into these just adds another step in the process.
Also, they have to be washed pretty much each time their worn, which is a pain.
If you're still feeling cold, we have reviews of heated vests, jackets and even articles on installing heated grips. See the right-hand column of this page for a menu of our articles on cold weather riding equipment.
Which brings us to the latest piece of winter gear, the Frank Thomas "Antifreeze" branded "Neck Guard".
Frank Thomas is a name that is probably not well known to motorcycle riders in the U.S.A., but the brand is ubiquitous in the U.K. and is now offered by Cycle Gear in the U.S.A.
Frank Thomas offers (I won't say "manufactures" because I think most of their products are made under contract across the globe) a huge variety of motorcycle clothing made from textile or leather and an equally huge number of miscellaneous accessories.
Most of their products, from what I've seen, are of decent quality and are reasonably priced.
You might say that they've staked out the mid-market with yeoman products that can bear the grunt of everyday commuting.
The Frank Thomas "Antifreeze" line includes a variety of windproof underwear, socks, gloves, T-shirts and neck warmers.
The fabrics and quality appear to me to be nearly identical to the Biker's Comfort in Action and other brands of motorcycle wind block clothing, and I wouldn't be surprised to learn that they're all made in the same factory somewhere in the global ether.
I have a thing about cold air blowing on my neck; that is, I can't stand it!
The Antifreeze wind block neck warmer is basically a tube that's made from a somewhat stretchy polyester.
The inside is lined with a type of fleece, and the outside material looks identical to that used in the Biker's Comfort in Action products.
The Neck Guard is worn up over the chin and over the mouth, and the section that covers the mouth is breathable.
I don't notice much moisture buildup in that area, which is surprising but good.
I found that the Neck Guard works as advertised, keeping the cold air off my neck. It's slightly fussy to get it adjusted before putting on a full-face helmet, but once it's tucked up underneath the helmet and into the jacket neck, it works fine.
My only complaint is that the material doesn't seem stretchy enough.
The product only comes in one size, and it's too big to fit my wife's neck, and it could actually be a bit smaller for my size 17.5" neck.
The first time I pulled it over my head, I ripped some of the stitches because I stretched it beyond its design limits.
Some of the looseness is probably necessary to allow it to be tucked under a jacket collar and so that the helmet's chin strap can be secured underneath. The bottom line is that it may be too loose to fit anyone with a size 16 or under neck.
The Frank Thomas Antifreeze Neck Guard can help keep cold air off the rider's neck; it's relatively comfortable and seems to be made from high quality fabrics.
I wish the material had more stretch and I also would like it to be slightly longer, but it's easy to use and works as advertised.