Riding motorcycles is fun and adrenaline-filled activity, and an essential part of making it as safe and exciting as possible is the gear. For new riders, purchasing appropriate gear will be as important as getting the right motorcycle, and the costs will vary in the same way.
As a whole, motorcycle gear tends to cost between $800 and $1500, but the price will increase for the highest quality options. Motorcycle gear essentials include helmets, gloves, jackets, boots, and pants.
Suits and accessories like knee pads can add to the cost. Some cheaper options may be found, but can potentially pose safety risks.
If you’re interested in riding motorcycles, let’s take a look at what you may spending on purchasing gear for this hobby.
The Cost of Motorcycle Gear
The cost of motorcycle gear will be influenced by various factors. The quality of the gear will make the biggest price difference, but you will also see variations based on the number of items you will purchase.
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Helmets are one of the most important parts of motorcycle gear and the elements that will most determine your safety. As such, it is recommended to not cut corners when it comes to investing in a proper helmet.
It should have all the necessary certifications (it needs to have at least the DOT) and it should be made from the most resistant materials. There are numerous types of helmets with infinite designs, colors, and features, and you’ll find them at many different price points.
The most essential part of choosing a helmet is to make sure it offers as much safety as possible. It should fit your head perfectly and it should offer as much coverage for your head as you feel comfortable wearing. The most recommended type of helmet is full-face coverage.
This gets you the most protection for your head because more coverage absorbs more impact, which can prevent traumatic brain injuries and other related problems in case of a crash.
Experts advise that you should try to avoid spending under $100 on a helmet because the lower price indicates a lack of quality that can result in a lack of protection.
While the price range for helmets can vary significantly and usually averages between $100 and over $1000, you should prepare to spend at least $250 on one to make sure you get the most out of it.
A motorcycle jacket is an essential part of the rider’s look, but it’s also designed to keep you safe beyond the fashionable aspect. You can find motorcycle jackets at different price points, but they will usually be one of the gear items that you will spend the most money on at once.
Motorcycle jackets should be made from durable materials that are also abrasion-resistant to reduce friction burn in case of crashes. There are endless versions of motorcycle jackets that will fit any style preference.
They will also keep you protected and comfortable in any weather, while also asserting your cool look. You will be able to find good quality jackets between $200 and $600, but be prepared to spend more than that on very fine quality and collector’s items.
A good pair of gloves is an indispensable part of motorcycle gear and they should be treated as such. Your hands need to be as protected as possible during a ride, and you should opt for abrasion-resistant and highly durable materials.
Some of them even include reinforced stitching and padded areas that will keep your hands and wrists even safer. The cost for a pair of gloves averages between $40 and $200. You can find a decent pair for $50, but the more you spend on them, the more protection you’ll get.
With safety being such an important factor, you should consider saving enough of the budget to purchase as good a pair as possible. Bear in mind that the gloves should always fit you snugly, but without limiting your movement when it comes to operating your motorcycle.
You should try on the gloves before purchasing them, and check that the materials are not only resistant but also malleable.
You may be tempted to wear normal pants or jeans when you’re riding your motorcycle, but those won’t protect you in case you have an accident. You should always buy pants that are designed to be motorcycle gear.
They will usually be lined with materials like Kevlar which will reduce friction and abrasion. They will also usually be made from fabrics like Cordura, created to endure impact and prevent as much abrasion damage as possible.
If you’re attached to the idea of combining a pair of jeans with the rest of your motorcycle gear, you’ll be happy to know that you will find options created specifically for motorcycle riding, but they provide less damage control.
You’ll be able to find pants at a price point between $100 and $250. You should ideally invest in pants made from leather or textiles like the aforementioned Cordura. If they include some padding in the hips and knees areas, that would make them even better choices.
If you’d like to avoid the hassle of purchasing individual items for your motorcycle gear, you can opt for a one-piece riding suit. The full suit will offer the most protection out of all other options, but it is usually not the most recommended unless you are a consummate motorcycle rider and go out on the road every day.
However, if you participate in races, this will be the most recommended option. It does not allow for the most customization, but it removes the need to research each gear component separately before committing to a purchase.
Full riding suits will be expensive, but they do include several components in one. Depending on the quality and the brand, you’ll spend between $100 and over $1000 on a riding suit. As usual, if you opt for the highest quality, you’ll see yourself paying more for the privilege.
If you’d like to aim for the top, one of the current best options on the market is the Aerostich Roadcrafter, which sells for over $1300.
Motorcycle riding boots are another element that has defined the biker look, but it’s also highly important for safety. Proper riding boots are necessary because they will be the best option to protect your feet and ankles from potential impact.
Beyond that, they will also keep you comfortable on long rides by providing adequate support for your feet. You will be able to get some excellent boots for around $200, but you will also see options under and over that price.
Boots at the $200 mark will usually provide the best of both worlds, especially if you have to mind the budget. They will provide enough quality to keep you safe while making sure that you won’t break the bank.
If you’re looking for more complete coverage with higher-end materials and your budget can stretch that far, you’ll be able to get some spectacular pairs for over $250.
Accessories are not always necessary parts of motorcycle gear, but they can help make the experience even better while adding flair to your look. Here are some ideas for accessories you can purchase to go with your motorcycle-riding habit:
- Earplugs: These can ensure your comfort while you ride and they will protect your hearing at the same time. While they will absorb some of the motorcycle noise, they won’t affect your ability to hear your surroundings. Earplugs are cheap and easy to find.
- Tinted visor: You can add this to your helmet to protect your eyesight from the sun and to allow you full visibility no matter the amount of light. If you don’t have a full-face helmet, you can also use motorcycle goggles. These will be between $50 and $200. If you prefer, you can use sunglasses instead.
- Communications system: If you tend to ride with a group, this is a good feature to add to keep in touch with fellow riders. It can also come in handy if you have a passenger.
Is Second-Hand Motorcycle Gear a Good Option?
Buying second-hand motorcycle gear is usually not recommended, but this can vary depending on the item. You should always avoid purchasing a second-hand helmet because it is an essential safety item and you won’t be able to accurately tell its condition or its age when buying it used.
In contrast, you can safely buy second-hand riding jackets or pants if they seem in good condition and they continue to offer solid protection.
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Motorcycle gear costs can vary significantly and will depend on many factors. In total, you will usually spend between $800 and $1500 on motorcycle gear, unless your budget can stretch to include the highest quality items.
You should avoid the cheapest-priced items as much as possible because they won’t provide the same level of safety on the road.