7000 miles in a Hideout Hi-Pro Jacket

7000 miles in a Hideout Hi-Pro Jacket

SINGING IN THE RAIN  (NOT THE FILM VERSION) OR 7,000 MILES OF DRY RIDING.

On the 3rd of April 2012, Kate Jennings of Hideout Leathers gave a two hour presentation on Hideout motorcycle clothing to the Herts. & Beds. Advanced Motorcycle Group, and very informative it was too. I was in the market for a new set of leathers, so was keen to hear what Kate had to say and to look over the range that she had brought along. I was and still am a committed leather suit man, so imagine my surprise when I realised that my attitude towards textile suits was turned absolutely on their head as Kate introduced Hideout’s new Hi-Pro textile suit, which has all the integrity of leather and is guaranteed 100% waterproof for 5 years. Full details of the specification of these high tech suits can be found on their website www.hideout-leather.co.uk  I will leave you the reader to check them out, what I want to do is tell you about my experiences of covering 7,000 miles whilst wearing this suit through the wettest and foulest weather that has been on record for decades.

As well as being an active member of Herts & Beds Advanced Motorcyclists, I am also president of the Knights Templar Motorcycle Touring Club, this club does three European tours each year and in addition the Herts & Beds have their annual Continental Jaunt each May. So here it was Mid April the touring season about to begin and I needed new riding gear. What turned out to be the norm for some months to come ( perpetual rain) had started,  my riding pattern had changed and I was not looking forward to constant stops to put on or take off wet weather overalls, so I did the sensible thing and opted for the Textile Hi-Pro suit.

In the company of 20 plus riders I embarked on the start of the touring season and encountered not only constant and heavy rain, but hailstones as big as marbles, standing water that rapidly became floods, and rain so heavy that it was impossible to safely continue riding. There were times that no cover was available and we just had to sit exposed to the elements until it subsided enough to continue our ride. All the 20 other riders had various wet weather protection, including leading brand textiles, also guaranteed waterproof. In the event the only suit that did not let in water for the whole of the 7,000 miles was my Hi-Pro suit by Hideout.

We did have the odd sunny day and temperatures were quite high, so a chance to check out how the suit performed in sunshine…was it going to be too hot ?.  I wear self wicking long johns and a long sleeve self wicking base layer ( Hideout brand) whatever the weather. This combination proved perfect for me. On cold wet days with the suit lining in on the Hi-Pro suit I was comfortable, and during the warm weather with the lining out, again I was perfectly comfortable. So with apologies to Gene Kelly and Morecambe & Wise, I really was “Singing in the rain”. I had no Pfaffing around with waterproof overalls, remained comfortable and most importantly dry…On arrival at our destination a quick shake and most of the exterior water just fell away, so no need for drying rooms just hang in the Shower for a while and the suit was ready for the next day.

There were a couple of minor niggles, and these related to the waterproof cuffs at the end of each sleeve. Initially I felt these should have been made from a  stretch type material, as when putting the jacket on and trying to hold the sleeve of my base layer it became difficult getting my fist through the cuff without letting go of the base layer sleeve, this resulted in the sleeve riding up my arm…uncomfortable, however after some use I developed a technique which overcame this, and as a long term solution I stitched some thumb loops onto the bottom of my base layer sleeve…problem solved. The Hideout  logo at the top of each sleeve started to detach from the suit, these were replaced without fuss and I was told that the process of fixing these logo’s had now been improved so they should now stay put. The final minor thing was a small lining zip on the sleeve malfunctioned, the small clasp that held the start of the zip in place came adrift, again this was replaced without delay and without question.

So my summary after 7,000 miles riding is very positive, The Hi-Pro suit is light, the armour used is first class, the technology advanced, comfortable, 100% waterproof and made by very nice people right here in the UK…..check them out, I do not think you will regret it…whew, the second part of my season will shortly be underway, the weather has not changed, so here’s to another 7,000 miles “Singing in the rain”.

Syd Dore. Nazeing. Essex.