MotorcycleDaily.com – Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

Motorcycle News, Editorials, Product Reviews and Bike Reviews

MD Product Review: Alpinestars Waterproof T-Gasoline Jacket and Roam Boots

Quality motorcycle gear has saved my rear end more times over the course of my life than I care to remember. As an avid dirt rider, I’ve had my share of scary crashes. But if it weren’t for great gear, my toes, feet, arms and head would have long ago met a gruesome fate .

When it comes to tough gear, the name Alpinestars has always been synonymous with quality in my book, so when my editor gave me the opportunity to test out some of the companies’ new gear, I jumped at the opportunity. A few weeks later, poof, a box containing Alpinestars waterproof Roam touring boots, and a sporty T-Gasoline waterproof jacket arrived at my door, so I got right down to business.

The outer shell of the Alpinestars T-Gasoline is constructed with polyurethane coated 600 denier polyester that’s thick and tough, yet supple enough to give good mobility and fit comfortably without much stiffness.  Inside, the jacket is fully lined with a breathable polyamide waterproof membrane that keeps the torso warm and dry in the rain.

A storm flap behind the hardy zipper also helps keep water out, as does the snug high collar with an easy to use Velcro closure. The inside of the collar is lined with a soft polyester and the upper hem is sheathed with soft, elastic neoprene as well—a nice touch that keeps rain drops from rolling down your back and feels quite comfortable too. To wrap things up, two exterior zip-up pockets up give you a little bit of storage space, but these do not seem to be waterproof.

Alpinestars’ CE certified, high density foam Bio-Armor shoulder, elbow and arm pads come standard and the jacket also features soft foam chest and back protection that can be replaced with Alpinestars’ more protective pads.

A nice detail about all the protection is that it all fits snugly in place, and doesn’t have a tendency to wander around while riding. Also, the pliable elbow and shoulder pads don’t feel awkward or clunky, and they align comfortably with the body parts they’re meant to protect. For me, that translates into great crash protection that also provides a natural feel under everyday riding conditions. Of course, all the padding is easily removable when it’s time for hand washing as well.

The polyester thermal liner that lies under the padding is actually very warm, and when the weather improves a bit, it can be removed easily—just unzip it  and undo the snap anchors at the cuffs and you have a jacket that’s substantially thinner, roomier and lighter. Both the liner and the jacket have pockets on the inside, so there’s always a waterproof space to carry your wallet and phone.

After riding with the T-Gasoline for some time now, I have to say the size medium that was sent to me fits very snug and comfortably, has a cozy feel, and the sleeve length is just right. The thick outer shell feels robust and the padding is really a nice touch—the jacket seems like it could withstand a good thrashing.

Even with the liner removed, the T-Gasoline does not pass as a summer jacket though—the jacket has zero vents. There is no doubt Alpinestars designed it specifically for riders that aren’t interested in garaging their wheels when the temperatures dip, and for those types of riders, the T-Gasoline is a pretty nice piece.

It has been unseasonably cold and rainy here in Los Angeles this fall, and I’ve been able to find out just how effective the T-Gasoline is at keeping a rider warm. In the past few weeks, I’ve been blessed with the joyous surprise of sudden showers while out riding—a few times—and I must say the jacket lives up to Alpinestars’ claims. The solid, vent-less construction kept my torso totally dry through prolonged bouts of light but steady rain. No drips down my neck, and with the fit adjusters at the waist and cuffs drawn in all the way, the jacket sealed well against my body. With a light cotton sweater under the tight fitting sporty jacket, my core stayed comfortably cozy, and since the fabric breaths well, I didn’t feel clammy at all. The temperatures during my rides through the rain where likely in the 50’s, so gear heads braving a heavier and colder onslaught may have a different experience.

Another aspect of the jacket I was pleased with was its simple and sleek styling. Of course, some degree of gaudiness is always a good thing. Lots of attention from other motorists is exactly what we riders need, and although the T-Gasoline is quite simple, it has a reflective white band sewn across the sleeves and shoulders that does a good job of reflecting light. The Alpinestars logos emblazoned across the chest and back look pretty slick too, and the overall design is straightforward.

All in all, the T-Gasoline is a great piece of gear for the cooler months, and for riders who live places with climates less temperate than that of Southern California. At a suggested MSRP of $209.95, it’s a good deal on a truly waterproof jacket with comfortable impact protection and sleek looks. Alpinestars makes it in size small through 4XL and the jacket also features an internal waist connection zipper that allows you to attach it to any of Alpinestars riding pants.

When it comes to keeping your feet toasty as well as protected in nasty weather, a pair of Alpinestars waterproof Roam boots will definitely do the trick, which is no surprise because well made boots have always been the companies’ pieces de resistance. I must disclose a little personal bias here before going on though, as I have always been a fan of Alpinestars boots—ever since the early days on my Z50 and Pee Wee.

To start off, let’s cover some of the technical stuff. Alpinestars’ Roam touring boots feature an outer shell crafted of synthetic leather that’s reasonably thick, coupled with ribbed flex zones at the heel and ankle that allow ankle motion to flex the boot back, forth and side to side. The vulcanized rubber sole is thick, sturdy, and quite grippy, with soft little nubs that protrude further than the tread. A soft rubber shift pad is double stitched to the left boot for wear resistance, and another to the right boot for symmetry. Overall, this mix of features come together to give the boot a supple yet supportive feel. Three Velcro straps keep things together and can likely accommodate a range of different calf sizes comfortably as they have a large range of adjustment.

The interior of the Roam is really my favorite part about the boot. Compared to my old and worn pair of Tourmaster Solutions, the interior padding is much thicker and more comfortable. With a pair of wooly riding socks, the size 10 boots fit very snuggly, and keep my feet from wiggling around. The interior provides a solid arch support and there is  a cushy feel to the sole. If my experience is any indication, they fit true to size, as well.

An added benefit of the thick padding is the insulation it provides from the elements, and I must say, these kicks are warm. Also, the thick padding around the shin area feels like it would be useful when, inevitably, your shin meets the jagged steel teeth of a foot peg. The heel and toe area are reinforced quite strongly and seem like they would hold up well in the event of a crash.

Between the plush padding and the outer shell is Alpinestars’ thin Drystar membrane, which really does keep water out and warmth in. On those same rainy rides I mentioned earlier in the article, I was wearing the Roam boots, and they performed as promised—my feet stayed cozy and dry. The boots also seemed to breathe well in the damp weather, so no soggy feet so far.

Off the bike, the Roams are reasonably comfortable to walk in. Again, these mid height boots have a decent amount of flex—I’ve been wearing them around the house while writing this article, and I actually forgot I had them on at one point.

Overall, Alpinestars’ Roam boots offer nothing  fancy, and no gimmicks. They’re just good boots designed with function in mind, not fashion. At an MSRP of $159.95, they also offer very good value.

For more details on the Alpinestars T-Gasoline Jacket and Roam Boots, visit http://www.alpinestars.com.

The manufacturer provided Motorcycle Daily with these products for purposes of evaluation.


12 Comments

  1. xplaner says:

    I have a pair of Drystar gloves and they’re only ok. When i needed them most, they failed. I was in Colorado and got caught in a mountain shower that turned to snow, it was about 35 degrees. They stayed dry for about 30 minutes, then it got wet inside the gloves and my hands got cold. Disappointing since they’re not cheap.

    Report this comment

  2. hoyt says:

    why do many apparel companies go overboard with the size & frequency of their logo on the product? Instant no-sale for me.

    Report this comment

  3. Craig Moss says:

    @ilikefood dude I think this jacket is designed as a street riding jacket that is waterproof and it sounds like in this function it works great. It will keep you warm and dry in 90% of conditions and just looking at the design of it, I am sure it isn’t made to ride up the I-5 for hours during the winter rain.

    If you’re after a true all-weather touring jacket then Alpinestars have this covered too. A friend of mine has a Frontier Gore-Tex jacket that he swears by and I think this is just one of the options they have.

    Report this comment

    • ilikefood says:

      Well, if the jacket can’t handle multi-hour rides in the rain, then it isn’t really waterproof, is it? They should call it “mildly water-resistant” at most.

      What bugs me about reviews of winter and rain jackets is that it’s impossible to tell how truly waterproof (or warm) they are because the testers don’t test them properly. Not everyone rides in LA, where 50F and occasional showers are considered inclement weather. I think the only true test of winter jackets and suits I’ve ever seen was in RIDE magazine a few years ago, where they actually sprayed riding suits with a water hose for extended periods of time and also put people wearing them into a walk-in freezer.

      Bottom line – you can’t test a jacket that claims to be waterproof without riding in the rain for a few hours, just as you can’t test a superbike without riding it on the racetrack.

      Report this comment

      • Craig Moss says:

        You are right, Waterproof is waterproof but is only one property of a good touring jacket. This jacket states it is waterproof and on this basis I am sure it is. You seem to be dismissing it being waterproof because it wasn’t tested for hours in the rain.

        It seems that the tester used this jacket in an environment that it was used for, to suggest all product testers do elaborate tests like the one you saw in RIDE magazine are very time consuming and are usually only done in large, once a year comparative tests. Expecting the same level of critique for every product test is unrealistic.

        However, I have had enough good experience with Alpinestars gear to continue to buy them, their R&D budget is probably unmatched in the industry and that to me says something.

        Report this comment

  4. ilikefood says:

    Umm… testing the waterproofness of a jacket in LA showers is pretty useless. Same with testing how warm the jacket is when the temperature is in the 50s. Pretty much any jacket will keep you warm and dry on a brief ride through a light shower in 50F. How about riding for 2-3 hours in pouring rain, or in 30F weather? How would this jacket perform then?

    Report this comment

  5. Mickey says:

    I own 2 pairs of the Alpinestar gloves with Drystar. They are horrible rain gloves. Not only do they NOT keep your hands dry, once your hands get damp they are impossible to get back on. I’d have a hard time recommending anything with Drystar in it.

    Report this comment

  6. scorpio says:

    I’ve owned the Space and Effex goretex models, and A-Stars boots remain my favorites. Looks like these might be my next pair. The website is less than informative though; is there a zipper under the velcro straps or does the shaft material fold over, and is the drystar lining fixed or is it a removable bootie? I would appreciate a response from the reviewer. Thanks!

    Report this comment

    • Jonathan Bole says:

      Scorpio,
      There is no zipper under the Velcro straps. The Drystar lining is fixed, and there is no removable bootie either. There is no break in the waterproof membrane underneath the straps, but it is loose enough so that when the straps are opened, the boots can be put on easily-like a webbing beneath the straps.

      Report this comment

  7. MGNorge says:

    Advertisement? I think it’s a review.

    Report this comment

  8. Dave says:

    I have the first generation of AStars Roam boots (not sure if these are different from mine in any way). I bought my boots in the spring of 2002 and still use them.

    These are the most comfortable boots I’ve ever owned in this price range. I think I paid $125 in 2002.

    Living on the Gulf Coast, though, means these boots are quite hot in the summer months. They really are waterproof too!

    Report this comment

  9. b says:

    Is this an advertisement? Can we get some disclosure if it is, please?

    Report this comment