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Thread: So why wouldn't I want roo leathers?

  1. #1
    apriliaforum Junkie aftriathlete's Avatar
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    So why wouldn't I want roo leathers?

    As a newly promoted expert, I'm starting to shop around for my first set of custom leathers, and I would love to get something lighter than the 15 lb Arlen Ness set I've had since I started riding track. So who has had roo leathers, and what are your experiences with them?

    I'm looking into a couple different brands here in the US, mainly Hazardous, Ballistik, and Comet. All appear to have their suits made in Pakistan, so no one has an advantage over the other from what I can tell, although it's not completely clear yet which have removable liners, which is a must for me. In talking to a very seasoned racer I have a lot of respect for though (in other words, he's old), he says to stay away from roo leather as it doesn't hold up to sweat and doesn't hold up to as many crashes as a set of cow leathers would.

    Thoughts?
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  2. #2
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    I don't know about the sweat issue but the old racer is definitely right about a 100% roo suit not holding up like cow leather to multiple crashes. Sportbike Track Gear had a video about all of the nitty gritty details. Professional racers don't care as their leather sponsor gives them leathers and they want the absolute lightest suit. I have a Teknics suit and it is 40% roo but not in any of the likely to crash areas.

  3. #3
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    I had a Spidi roo suit...never crashed in it though. Definitely comfortable, but felt 'thin'.

    I've worn about every off the shelf suit, and the Spidi is my suit of choice. Track wind pro and Track wind pro evo. Made from special italian cow. lol.
    Weighs 10 lbs for an average size suit.
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  4. #4
    apriliaforum Member emdashdash's Avatar
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    I think it's like other performance parts - more expensive up front for a lighter piece that is just barely strong enough. I wouldn't expect a roo suit to hold up well to multiple crashes, so it matters whether you want to replace it after every go down (and keep a spare on hand).

  5. #5
    apriliaforum expert drvacation's Avatar
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    good god there comfortable! but yes they don't crash as well, had a friend go down at the track 80-100 mph and the right leg will probably only take 1-2 more there, but it's also on top of padding, after wearing roo I do not think I could go back.
    so light,so supple, clean and lube mine twice a year (22 plus track days, dessert heat) 3 plus years and there more supple than new, most of my friends cow hides are not fairing as well, getting stiffer and 1's starting to crack

  6. #6
    apriliaforum Junkie aftriathlete's Avatar
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    Interesting feedback from all. I never thought about roo leathers from that angle, just another high-performance piece of kit that's really only designed to protect you once and then it's replaced by your sponsor. Considering I am not one of those sponsored guys getting free or freely repaired suits after every off, I'll stick with cow. Current plan is to pursue NJK custom leathers -- American company AND American made, I might even be able to go get my measurements done there in San Clemente if I choose to wait til this summer when I'm back in the states.
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    apriliaforum expert meanstrk's Avatar
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    I have a couple sets of roo (Hazardous being one of them) and that lighter weight is sure as hell nice to have if you are in them a lot, which I am. Mine crashed just fine and held up well, but the roo leather does break down over time more than cow, so there is a bit more limited life cycle. That being said, I have been using mine for going on 5 years now with zero issues. The Hazardous leathers do have a removable liner as well. I personally know both the founder and the CEO of Hazardous, and they have branched out from just leathers to quite a variety of apparel. I rather their Alpha gloves up with anything else on the market. Those gloves lasted longer than any other glove I have ever used and hardly had a scuff on them when I went down. I replaced them with another set of Alpha gloves when they wore out finally.
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    apriliaforum expert Triple J's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftriathlete View Post
    Current plan is to pursue NJK custom leathers -- American company AND American made, I might even be able to go get my measurements done there in San Clemente if I choose to wait til this summer when I'm back in the states.
    Good choice! My current set is NJK, and they're nice. My previous set was Z Custom, also made in the US in Southern CA - protected me through several low sides, and one 120+ mph crash where I slid over 300' (needed minor repairs, but I had no rash). I'm a big fan of the US made custom leathers, and they're reasonably priced in comparison to other options.
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    apriliaforum prov-nov V42016's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drvacation View Post
    good god there comfortable! but yes they don't crash as well, had a friend go down at the track 80-100 mph and the right leg will probably only take 1-2 more there, but it's also on top of padding, after wearing roo I do not think I could go back.
    so light,so supple, clean and lube mine twice a year (22 plus track days, dessert heat) 3 plus years and there more supple than new, most of my friends cow hides are not fairing as well, getting stiffer and 1's starting to crack
    What do you clean and lube the suit with?
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    apriliaforum expert drvacation's Avatar
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    Luxsol

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by aftriathlete View Post
    As a newly promoted expert, I'm starting to shop around for my first set of custom leathers, and I would love to get something lighter than the 15 lb Arlen Ness set I've had since I started riding track. So who has had roo leathers, and what are your experiences with them?

    I'm looking into a couple different brands here in the US, mainly Hazardous, Ballistik, and Comet. All appear to have their suits made in Pakistan, so no one has an advantage over the other from what I can tell, although it's not completely clear yet which have removable liners, which is a must for me. In talking to a very seasoned racer I have a lot of respect for though (in other words, he's old), he says to stay away from roo leather as it doesn't hold up to sweat and doesn't hold up to as many crashes as a set of cow leathers would.

    Thoughts?
    look at better brands like Alpinestars or RS Taichi or Dianese.

  12. #12
    apriliaforum prov-nov
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    Quote Originally Posted by turboblew View Post
    look at better brands like Alpinestars or RS Taichi or Dianese.
    Have you checked out the Heroic Suits? I own one the custom suits and it has been awesome. See them at www.heroicracingapparel.com I also have the Heroic SPR-Pro Gloves... Todd definitely stands behind his products

  13. #13
    apriliaforum expert drvacation's Avatar
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    When looking at "better brands", you better not be looking at there cheaper suits, same pakastani crap as eBay nowadays.

  14. #14
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    You may just have to try on a few different brands and see what you like. I have an Axo Indy suit; comfortable out of the box. Love it! I also have an Axo 2-piece that I crash tested

  15. #15
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    I love my RS TaiChi (Japanese cow hide version), but it did need some minor repair after a crash. Barnacle Bill took care of it for a very reasonable price. NCBike is noted as being the "eraser" erasing anything it comes in contact with, so I think the suit did OK just needing some minor repair on one sleeve. It should be noted there was no injury to my arm. The liner and elbow protection were 100% intact as well. I might have thrown a couple pieces of duct tape over the small tear and gone back out if I didn't have a broken finger.

    The liner takes some time to remove and get all of the pads in and out of it for washing.

    I had a cheap AStars before this. Don't go that route, they are not very good suits. The high end AStars are probably fine from what I have heard.

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