Buying an Aerostitch
Buying An Aerostitch
It's arguably the best all around riding suit you can buy.
It's mostly waterproof: no rain gear to pack, no need to find a place to stop and change when it starts to rain.
It fits quickly over street clothes.
The price is reasonable considering you're getting one of the most respected riding suits made. I spent a little over $800 plus shipping.
The suit is American made. Aerostitch is well known for quality repairs to their suits. You will get better support than you would on most/all suits made overseas.
There is no doubt that leather has better abrasion properties. Aerostitch suits include a warning on the inside indicating that the suit does not serve as a replacement for proper competition grade leathers.
The crashes I've seen indicate that the suit will protect you but it will need to be repaired after each crash.
If you typically wear a button-down dress shirt for work and wear the Aerostich on your commute, some people have problems with excessive shirt wrinkling. Neatly folding your shirt and packing it a bag until you arrive at work will take care of this. This would also be a good way to avoid potential sweat spots on hot summer days. [Ed. jtucker]
Start on their website.
I bought a two piece Roadcrafter. The reason for a two piece is simple: I wanted something I can wear as a suit to tour or commute to work but also have a separate jacket for short trips or to wear out if someone drives or it gets cold around the campfire.
I found their sizing to be a little generous. I have a 39" chest and a 32" natural waist. I normally wear a size 40 suit and 31" waist jeans. I ended up with a 38L jacket and 36L pants. They ultimately sent me two suits until I found one that fit.
Their sizing is a little odd. Read it carefully a few times and be sure you talk to someone before ordering. Libby tells me you will get slightly different answers about sizing depending on who you talk to. I felt they didn't think too much about sizing, just sent me the sizes I asked for.
A drawback to the sizing process is that they do charge you for the suit and shipping each time they send you a suit. Start at the beginning of a credit card billing cycle so you can have everything returned before your bill comes.
They will not refund you shipping. It's worth it as far as I'm concerned.
I am usually an off the shelf fit. I did not need alterations in this case.
I did end up needing a forward lean elipse. If you ride a bike with low clip-ons or bars you will probably want to order one. Some people need tow. My suit is a little tight in the back without one.
I did order a pen pocket on my left shoulder and knee velcro. Consider their features carefully. They can add them later but if they're added when the suit is built they can seam seal the stitching. It won't be waterproof if it's not seam sealed.
Have them send you stock suits until you find your size. You cannot return a suit with custom features.
I only have about an hour of riding in the suit.
The suit is stiff when it arrives. I can tell it will need a fair amount of break-in. I do not think the break-in will be as rough as my Vanson Leathers.
Aerostitch suits have a bad reputation for "look." If you are careful about fit and color I don't think it looks decent. I made a point of buying an all black suit and I made sure to get it form fitting. Fit and color make a big difference.
The arms feel a little long when I am off the bike. They seem right when I reach for the clip-ons on the MZ.
The jacket is not as warm as I'd hoped. I will probably end up with a windproof layer underneath. I'm thinking of a high end running jacket that fits over my sweater and vest, just under the Aerostitch.
Overall the feel different from leathers: it's lighter, more casual feeling. It feels a little odd if you're used to the "comfort" of the weight of leathers at speed.
For long tours I would probably avoid wearing jeans as they bunch up under the suit. I would probably wear light cargo pants or similar.
Riding with a back, or spine protector is always a good idea. Aerostich offers a back protector for their suits and jackets, however, compared to some other 3rd-party options, it doesn't seem beefy enough to me. I went with the Bohn protector. Note: the relatively large Bohn protector may inhibit some ventilation in the suit. [Ed. jtucker]
- Aerostich Back Pad: Aerostich
- Bohn Back Protector (6 plate): ActionStations
- Bohn Back Protector (7 plate): ActionStations
I would seriously consider buying an Aerostitch as your first/only suit. I bought leathers first. I absolutely love riding in leathers but I suspect and Aerostitch is going to serve me better overall.