This year's IMS in San Mateo was kicked off by a fantastic local edition of the SideStandUp podcast in the heart of San Francisco, at BMW Motorcycles on 6th and Bryant Street. In case you missed it, catch up here (Episode 120)! Carla and I had a great time chatting with Jennifer of Werkstatt, Crystal of Scuderia West and Larry of BMW SF.
Big thanks to Larry for hosting us. The facility is beautiful, if you haven't yet visited them downtown. A customer lounge with a flat screen tv, wifi and espresso. That's so San Francisco, isn't it? As soon as I walked in, a CHP officer was sitting in the lounge, waiting for his Beemer to be finished. I asked him if he likes the new Beemer or the old Harley and he just sat back and laughed. Apparently that was a silly question.
This year's IMS at San Mateo was a little smaller than everyone expected. Although a few manufacturers are missing, I met some fantastic vendors that didn't disappoint. First off, I met the folks at Teiz Motorsports. They're making affordable one piece textile and leather suits. They've recently started doing custom orders in women's sizing, which I was happy to see. You do need to custom order this option, but it seems like a good value given the price point ($219-$500) for the base suit.
If you're a woman and you're looking for one piece suits, it's pretty difficult to find anything except an Aerostitch. I'm a fan of choice and the Teiz seems like a good option. So here's a quick summary of what might be available if you're a woman riding a motorcycle and need a one piece:
1. REV'IT Infinity Suit $1299.99 Although the smallest size is a men's small, if you're roughly a women's size US 10 and up, you may find this will fit you. Take a minute to watch the revzilla video review of this suit. It's freaking amazing. Before you pick your jaw back up off the floor, at least watch the video and see Why it costs so much. A lot of R&D went into the design and construction of this suit. If I were large enough to fit a small, I would so get one. *sigh*
2. AlpineStars 360R Drysuit $599.95 I'm not sure how a men's small would fit for a woman, but based on the video that Revzilla posted, I think you'd have to be at least a size 12 or up to fit this suit. *sigh*
3. Aerostitch Roadcrafter $797.00 (base) Good ole' Aerostitch. It's been 'The" one piece for the motorcycling community for the past 10-20 years? Especially since you can order a 34 Short, it should fit a woman as small as me. Actually, I'm 99% sure it would fit me. My friend ordered a 2 piece Darien and she's also my size. It fit her quite well. Wasn't as fitted close to the body as some jackets, but it did fit her quite nice. She did a custom order and was quite happy with it.
4. Olympia Phantom $459.99 The Phantom is comparable to the Aerostitch, waterproof in the shell and has a full length removable liner. I think a small men's wouldn't fit any woman under a size 12 or 14. There's only one size for inseam, so if you're lucky enough to be tall and a size 14, this should be a decent option for you. The cut is fairly generous across the shoulders, arms and chest, so if you're busy too, even better!
5. Teiz Motorsports Lombard Suit $319.00 Teiz has introduced smaller women's sizing, down to a size 34. I've asked for some clarification from the Cofounder and hope to report back in January with more details about the company and their products. Although they've been called an Aerostitch knockoff, for less than $400, it's hard to beat. They're a real company with a genuine interest in the safety and protection of riders. There are tons of companies that live abroad and 'manufacture gear' for less than $100. I've been contacted by companies like that and have refused to even consider looking at their products. You can custom order their suits as well. I saw them at the San Mateo IMS, they will probably stop in at the Chicago IMS since they're based in the MidWest.
If you know of any other companies making one piece suits that fit women really well, please let me know!
Another company that I ran into was Adventure Motorcycle Gear. I met briefly with one of the owners of the website, but unfortunately had no time to try anything on. I'm hoping to see them again in Long Beach and will report back. In the meantime, their winter offerings are here:
They're quite popular in Europe, I hope to review some of their gear in January.