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BMW Recalls Nearly 49K Motorcycles; Rear Wheel Can Loosen!! CHECK YOURS!!

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49K BMW Bikes Recalled

REVIEW: FIRSTGEAR Contour Mesh Jacket for Women

I recently had the wonderful opportunity from to review a jacket made by Firstgear. As many of you already know, Firstgear is one of my very favorite gear companies for women’s gear. They not only think of amenities for all riders, but have a very good conceptual design for female bodies. This gear fits women of all sizes and the size chart is actually fairly accurate!

I wear Firstgear HT overpants so I like staying within one gear company so that my gear has the ability to zip together for a more secure ride, however when you purchase any Firstgear product, you get a zipper connection that can be sew into either a jacket of pants of another brand for the perfect fit. I must admit, that I have other gear, but choose to use my Firstgear most often. Partially this is due to the fact it fits comfortably and has excellent armor that doesn’t rub of chafe anywhere. Firstgear is definitively my number one choice.

Now back the the new Firstgear Contour Mesh Jacket. I had one of the original contour mesh jackets when they were first released. I adored the design, and wore it frequently in the hot summer months, but found oddly that it ran a bit small. I bought an XL jacket instead of my usual L and it even fit a bit tight so that I had to pick and choose what i wore underneath. This new jacket is more true to Firstgear sizing. I got a L and it fits perfectly. All the armor in correctly placed and as a safety requirement, the jacket fits snugly so that the armor stays in place as it should.

Backview with armor…you can buy better spine armor if desired.

The specifics on this jacket at least the ones notable for me are obviously the fit, the excellent armor and the fact it’s mesh for summer.

Fit: Sleek feminine cut that actually takes boobs into consideration! There are bands at both sides that adjust the fit around the waist.

Windproof/waterproof Liner: I don’t love the liner, since it can’t be worn as a stand alone jacket. I don’t know why they skimp on this, when they could certainly make one that could be used off the bike as well and waterproof, like a windbreaker. This liner zips into the jacket at both front sides and secures via snaps in the sleeves, neckline and sides. It fits nicely, but I’d rather see a stand alone liner.

Pockets and storage: There are more than enough pockets in this jacket. Even the liner has matching pockets. There is a long zipper on the right inside that would be good for a cellphone and easy to get to using your clutch hand. There are other pockets as well, but this one is my favorite.

Durability: The YKK zippers are heavy duty as is the 250-denier poly-mesh exterior shell that is used. I also remove the armor and throw the entire jacket into the wash and hang it to dry. I hate having my jackets covered by bugs so this to me is a real plus. You can also see on this new model that the back is longer than the front. This is a vast improvement over my older contour mesh since it would slip up my back when in a riding position unless i zipped it to my pants. I advise zipping, but there are times we simply forget!

Armor: CE-approved that is adjustable to some degree.

Air Flow: This mesh allows total airflow to keep you cool on the warmest days, however keep in mind there are two school of thoughts regarding this. One sez airflow is awesome the other sez it drys out your skin and dehydrates you. If it’s over 90, I general wear a evaporative cooling vest with this jacket. I probably stop once an hour to rehydrate the cooling vest. I am quite comfortable traveling like this. Others are completely content simply ingesting lots of water and wearing the jacket just like it comes. It’s purely an individual choice, but remember if it’s hot to hydrate!!

All in all this is an awesome jacket especially given the price point. On the price of the jacket is right around $145 for a size L after selecting from the pull down menu. There are several color choices, yellow, white, silver, pink, blue and black but my favorite it either white, silver or black. I’m simply not into pink anything, but it looks great on others. 😉

If you are looking for a new jacket, this would be a very good three season jacket. Spring, summer and fall it could easily be used. I would want a heavier jacket for winter, but I am always freezing. Do yourself a favor, check out some Firstgear riding gear!

This is me in my old contour mesh. It’s seen alot of (s)miles and comfortable road miles. I imagine so will my new version!

Photo provided by Tyler Risk.

But it’s HOT out!

Well summer is here in full swing which places many motorcyclists in the dilemma of choosing a proper protective riding jacket. I know their are triple digits out there, but we still need to ride fully protected or our skin will end up looking like the soil above or worse!! There are many great choices of gear for summer riding and I’m going to link a few here for those of you that are still riding on the fence about gear.

My all time favorite jacket is still my Firstgear Contour Mesh jacket, but I see that they have a new version that can be found here on This is an updated version of my same jacket and they have made it in hi-vis as well. These jackets are properly sized for women and have a nice contour fit to them defining a female figure. I would simply buy the size you wear in other jackets and I’m certain this will fit well. It’s was always my jacket of choice until I bought my Olympia Women’s Airglide Jacket. I have version 3 of this jacket and you can still find them on ebay for amazing prices. So, don’t worry about pricing.

You may notice that the jackets I have highlighted are both Hi-Vis. There is a reason for this. No, I don’t love looking like a 4th of July fire cracker, but I love being seen and it’s proven all around in nearly every industry that Hi-Vis is seen! Why do you think all highway workers are now wearing them? Anyway, I certainly notice how the seas will part when I’m lane splitting with my Olympia over my Firstgear mesh, which is black.

Firstgear Mesh

Olympia Mesh

For those that are more petite, Rev’it makes the wonderful Women’s Airwave jacket. This jacket does not come in Hi-Vis, however it does come in white and an outstanding black and white. Check it out.

Rev’it Mesh

All these makers that I have mentioned also have pants that are mesh and breathable. I prefer having both pieces match, so that I can zip the two together when touring. I have both Olympia and Firstgear pants and LOVE LOVE LOVE both!!

So, don’t, seriously just don’t leave home without first gearing up and by this I mean on EVERY ride. Why take a chance. It’s a jungle out there, which distracted drivers doing everything from eating lunch to scolding the kids while texting. I am absolutely religious about gearing up for every ride!

On another note, STAY HYDRATED too. I have a camelbak, but whatever you do, have water with you at all times or stop often enough to gulp down something to keep your hydration levels up. I know that unless I keep drinking, I get fatigued easily and a bit spacey. Not a good way to ride a motorcycle.

So, to sum up…gear up and hydrate up and enjoy your summer ride!!

Moi sportin’ my Olympia…see, you can still look damn sexy and be protected!! I do need to cover my leggings… 😉

Installing a frost/fog insert in you helmet with pinlocks…

I love my Nolan N104 and was fortunate enough to have a frost/fog insert lens included with my helmet purchase. For those of you that don’t and have a pinlock shield on your brand of helmet, you can purchase your frost/fog insert lens separately, for around $30bucks. They work well and will actually keep your helmet from fogging up in the rain or frosting over in cold weather. Of course the easiest way to keep this from happening is to stay home enjoying a hot toddy around the fireplace. 😉

I thought this was a handy video for the proper installation!

Bell Helmet Revolver EVO…moderately priced Modular Helmet

Bell’s Revolver EVO–nice aggressive styling, so I don’t feel like I simply have a huge head!!

It was just over one year ago when I first got my Bell Revolver helmet and I posted this review. Well, it’s time to do a follow up.

Sadly this helmet is a perfectly fitting helmet for my head shape. The only other one is the Arai Profile, which is NOT a modular helmet and according to Arai, they will likely never make a modular, so I make do with what fits.

Let’s face it, any full face helmet is better than none and I’m here to tell you the Bell is definitely decently made helmet for the money. When I bought mine, it was being replaced by the Bell EVO which addressed some of the issues I had with my original Bell Revolver. But I’m getting ahead of myself, here.

The first ride I took with my new Bell Revolver that magnet that serves to keep the chin strap from flying around while at speed, got lost. It simply fell off. Ok, I could deal with that, but it did make me crazy. I always had to either wrap the extra length inside where it often came loose or my final way to control it was to put it under my coat velcro where is stayed pretty well. That was number one.

The next issue was the fact my visor could not be cracked open to the first notch so I could get a bit of air flowing. It would simply slam shut. It did the same thing at whatever level I tried, the visor slammed shut. Boom…nope didn’t work. Number two.

The third and final issue that made me return my helmet was the fact the rubber seal along the neckline of the helmet began peeling away from the surface. Nope…time to use the warranty.

Now Bell has an awesome warranty. It’s basically covered for the life of the helmet, 5 years. I wrote the company and got a response right away and was asked to return my helmet for another. I did just that and my new Bell Revolver EVO, the second reincarnation of the original Bell Revolver was delivered today only two days after my returning the original. Quick and painless, only I’ll miss all my reflective stickers that were covering mine.

Ok…now for the EVO.
First off the things I had issues with were addressed. Well, not the silly magnet closing. That’s as cheap as ever. But the plastic seems better attached and the visor is definitely tigher and should be able to stay up a bit. The sun shade is still to light, which is sad since the reason we use a pull down shade is to protect us from the sun. The venting is the same, which also is a shame since the front vents should be screened so we don’t get small insects inside the helmet which has happened often. Instead there is screening in the back which makes no sense, since if there are insects, i’d like to have them see their way out! The need to reverse the screening. Supposedly the issue of noise though the helmet has been addressed somewhat in this new incarnation, but we’ll see.

The fit is awesome. It’s snug but comfortable and I don’t foresee any “hot spots”. Ok…that’s all for now. I’ll report back when I return from first trip on the beemer to the BMWMOA Rally in Salem!!

The new Bell Revolver EVO…moderately priced at $199. Best fitted for a narrow oval head shape.

Sunshade down

Looks like a bit of a quality control paint issue…

Face opened