Aerostich suits

JON12A

IBAUK's new Shop Keeper
IBA Member
#1
I am posting this here as I live in the UK but notice that so many US riders wear AEROSTICH suits and i would value your opinion on there quality and reliability to keep the weather out.
I must first say that I have bought two Roadcrafter suits one with the old type zipper and more recently a new suit with a so called waterproof zipper.
Both suits were new at the time and both fail to keep out the weather.
In heavy rain it takes only 10 / 15 mins and my clothing underneath is soaked , i bought the new suit with the improved zipper but this is only slightly improved.
In lighter rain both will let rain in at the crotch area without fail but after a longer period.
I have looked at the reviews on their site and a few mention the fact that they leak in the same area as mine but seem to accept that this is a known fault and that they are happy to put up with it in a suit that costs over a $1000 .
I am realy disappointed as I like the concept and its ease of use but i feel let down especially after buying a second thinking i must have just been unlucky with the first.
Here in the UK many riders agree that the Roadcrafters are not up to bad weather riding and complaints are a familiar thing.
So i guess my question is why do so many of my fellow IBA riders in the US keep buying them.
Is it just that our weather is worse than yours more often ?.
 
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Brian Bumpas

Premier Member
#2
I've been using stich gear for many years and never had a leak, it keeps the elements out, I have ridden through some serious weather conditions over the years I love it. Not sure why yours is leaking Have you spoken with their customer service ?
 

VP01

New Member
#3
Glad to weigh in here, but first some disclosure.

Caveats: While I have earned my IBA number, I freely confess that I swim at the shallow end of the IBA pool--perhaps some of the bigger IBA dogs will chime in. Also, my answers are limited to my experiences with one-piece Roadcrafter suits, and not upon any of the 2-piece suits or Darien products Aerostich also sells. That said, here’s my reply to your central question: "What's the appeal of an Aerostich suit for USA IBA riders?"

To me, there are several factors that quickly pop to mind--fit, convenience, functionality.

Fit, perhaps more specifically American fit, is a big factor to me. Typically, I can go into any men's store and find an off-the-rack 46-long suit or sport coat and it will generally fit perfectly. Of course, factors of style, country of origin, fabric, and how many pounds I've gained figure in, but I have found Aerostich suits to run true to this general rule. A 46-long one-piece Roadcrafter fits me to a T right out of the box. Throw in a high degree of optional custom tailoring and I can only imagine the appeal increases.

Convenience, for me, is also a hallmark of my Aerostich gear. Preparing for a ride can often resemble preparing for a deep-sea diving in classic brass helmeted, lead shoed, dive gear. My one-piece Roadcrafters go on quickly and once on, I'm ready for the road--just need helmet and gloves. It also fits securely with everything falling to place, conveying a sense of snug comfort and safety. On the bike, once broken in, the suit moves freely with me, has adjustability, plenty of storage pockets, and largely frees me from discomfort distractions. In terms of bio breaks (short), a single long zipper simplifies matters and gets me back to the bike as quickly as I want. Bio breaks of the long variety, may pose complications, and as such, I avoid/delay them as much as possible. The thought of wrestling in and out of a full body suit, stepping into, rubbing against, perhaps dunking a sleeve into unspeakable roadway restroom filth simply buries the needle on my cooties meter.

Functionality is where weather concerns (water incursion) come into play. ‘Stich crotch is a known phenomenon that has classically been remedied, but perhaps not entirely cured, by the assiduous application of Nikwax washes and sprays, and the application of other waterproofing treatments to seams and zippers. Yet, despite one’s best waterproofing efforts, when riding all day through a monsoon (heavy rain hitting your chest, being driven down your body by wind to pool in the reservoir created by your knees hugging the fuel tank), it’s only a matter of time till the combination of wind and vibration will enable water to find ingress and shortly thereafter, not too long before you start wondering which of your now floating trio is the Nina, Pinta, or Santa Maria. While I have had good success with the recommended waterproofing applications, I still travel with a set of Frog Togs because I believe asking the suit to stand up to extreme, long-term wet weather soakings/torture testing is asking too much—just too many seams, zippers, and stresses in that area to assume something is not going to give. An additional variable would be the bike one rides. I’ve experienced minor water seep-through on my old R100GS (pre Nikwax treatment), but not so much on my Kawasaki Concours C10 or C14 (GTR1000 and GTR1400) which have superior weather protection.

Gore-Tex is great stuff but has apparent limitations. I see it advertised as waterproof, and it is within certain parameters, but in those advertisements, it is often presented in recreational situations. However, hard-core industrial waterproofness (as seen on the Bering Sea Crabbing show "Deadliest Catch") reveals deck-hands wearing head-to-toe heavy-duty vulcanized gear, suggesting that when true, day-long, commercial waterproofness and durability are required, Gore-Tex falls short of the mark.

Again, just my 2 cents, but for me, I am very well satisfied with my Aerostich one-piece Roadcrafter suits and very well please with their comfort and performance across a wide variety of riding conditions. Further, I am contemplating adding to my current Aerostich collection and may branch out into the Darien product line. However, I am not an IBA big dog, nor am I totally reliant upon any one single piece of kit to cover all that mother nature can throw at me, willing to accept the limitations of my gear. As such, I ride with back-up and supplementary gear to cover as many bases as I can, but still greatly appreciate just how damn good my Aerostich suits are in the majority of situations.
 

JON12A

IBAUK's new Shop Keeper
IBA Member
#4
Thanks for your reply guys.
I've now taken to wearing the suit with a long waterproof over jacket when the weather looks like it might include rain.
I do take on board what you guys have said and only wish my experience was the same.
Most manufactures today seem to include storm seems that fold back thus stopping water ingress and at the very least a storm cover over the zip.
 

Bill Lumberg

Premier Member
#5
I ride year round, and ride in rain frequently. With my previous gear, if everything was configured perfectly, I’d still get drips on the neck or main zipper area. Just part of riding in heavy rain. I’d carry an extra T-shirt and pair of boxers if I was going someplace for the day, as these items tended to get wet occaisionally, and were the ones that caused discomfort due to dampness.

I switched to Aerostich Dariens this year. I just throw them on and I’m dry. No finesse involved. Just better design. Simply amazing. Before I’d fiddle, trying to decrease the wet line at the main zipper. Maybe put a scarf under the jacket. Often, I’d layer a shell over the jacket. It helped, but only so much.

My stich takes pouring rain in stride. Part, I think, is the collar design, which is high in the up position, and avoids the use of liner materials that would wick water. You can still get a drip or two with any suit, but I have yet to get one with my Dariens. There are one or two others just may do as well. Can’t say, as stich is all I use now.
 
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SteveAikens

Premier Member
IBR Finisher
#6
I ride with both one and two piece Roadcrafters. They're pretty old - neither leak anywhere except around the collar when I don't take time to make sure it's closed correctly.

Contact Aerostitch to get it resolved.
 

WY88

Premier Member
#7
I've heard, correctly or not, that the pants run somewhat short. Is this true? I'm 6'2", 35.5 (buy 36") inseam pants. Don't like it when my pant legs creep up.
 

Scott Parish

Premier Member
#8
I've heard, correctly or not, that the pants run somewhat short. Is this true? I'm 6'2", 35.5 (buy 36") inseam pants. Don't like it when my pant legs creep up.
I ordered my normal length of 32" and they ride-up more than I would like. If I were to order another pair - I would add an extra inch or two.
 

wavid

Dave Long
Premier Member
#9
I've found that standing on the pegs and wiping the water away from the seat and my crotch area every 15 minutes or so (depending on the rain intensity) has helped. I use a two-piece Roadcrafter with the "old" style zipper. One of the more experienced people at the Aerostich factory told me not to bother with the new style zipper - it wasn't that great of an improvement. I also think that Nixwax should be reapplied twice a year if you do lots of riding. I periodically wax the zippers with candle wax. YMMV.

Dave Long
 

AndyBlila

Premier Member
#13
I bought an Aerostich R3 Light for my CC50 run. It was hands down the best money I have spent on motorcycle gear. Tropical storm Alberto did it's best to keep me in Florida. It rained buckets on me for almost 300 miles. My suit.....completely waterproof.
 
#14
As a complimentary note, I've just came back from a 10-days trip to Norway (No Country for LD Men...), for which I purchased the complete Dainese D-Explorer suit.
I can strongly recommend this set as it kept me entirely dry and warm even after 14 rain hours in the saddle - while ventilation was great into the hot +30C (+85F) riding days.
Just my 2 cents...
 
#15
You may find a big difference in performance riding a faired bike vs. naked. My experience is limited to AD1 pants with various tops. A small gauntlet fairing and not been wet even in some all day soakers, just saying.
 
#16
Mine has been dry for thousands of miles of rain on both faired and unfaired bikes. I rode four hours in the rain a week ago. Powder dry in my Dariens.
 
#17
I have heard of the crotch wetness issue. I really wanted an Aerostich 2 piece suit. I like the fact it could be tailored to some degree to fit. I have a short inseam. Living in Texas I felt there was not enough vents. So I went with the KLIM Badlands. I ordered the shorter pants. It is much heavier than I needed but plenty of venting. I have ridden in some serious rain with not leaks.

I drove my special needs daughter to Duluth, MN, so she could get an Aerostich, measured and fitted to her somewhat odd build. The people there were great plus I got a tour of the place. It worked out great for her. I found out the lack of vents is not that big of problem, at least for her. We haven't ridden in hours of down pours but we have ridden in rain. So far neither of us have had a wet base layer.

One thing I discovered in my earlier days. when it is raining or when it is hot, I use a Bead Ridder on my seat. It helps cool and the water does not pool under my rear.
 
#18
One more thing I learned when it comes to motorcycle gear...don't waste money on the cheap stuff. If a person even thinks they are serious about riding (as in touring or rallys or any IBA ride) not just bar hopping, commit to spending the dollars in the beginning. You will save dollars later since you will need to upgrade. And always remember Gore Tex is your friend and earns its money. Looking "cool" is not being warm, dry, or even being cool.
 

Ed.

Premier Member
#20
Getting close to looking for some new gear and have been looking at aerostich in the mix. What I can't see immediately on their website is the difference between the various two piece models, specifically the roadcrafter and the Darien. Can anyone enlighten me?