Mar 29, 2012

Does This Armor Make My Butt Look Big?

A little while back, I was freaking out because I heard about someone bending her hip implant. So, I ordered hip pads for my Darien pants and those fine products arrived yesterday. I installed them this morning and took them for a test drive to work today. First, I think the extra protection is more than worthwhile. Second, as usual I immediately began to have second thoughts about my purchase. Aerostich makes two options for the pads, the soft shell set of TF3 foam and a curved hard shell set that has a hard plastic outer shell and might provide more protection. Now that I bothered to look, I see that my ole' buddy, Mr. Subjective, explained the differences in the pads at the bottom of the website page for the pads. [I use the smaller TF 5 hip pads, with optional sleeves in my Roadcrafter one piece. They are the easiest to manipulate my hand around to get into my pants pockets. (To reach a wallet or whatever.) And of the two versions of the larger size TF3 pads, the curved ones with the hard shells fit and function a little better -- but the flat ones are by far the best-seller. As far as protecting your hips from impacts they're all roughly similar, with the curved hard shell and TF5 models being slightly better. So if you want bigger and better, go with the curved hard shell model. For optimum street-pant access, the TF5 model. And for effective lower-cost protection, it's the flat ones. - Mr. Subjective 2012] The hard shell pads are $10 more, but that isn't what made me pick the softer pads.

Honestly, I was worried about comfort. There I said it. What kind of idiot chooses armor based on comfort? Me and a few thousand other riders and anyone else who uses armor on a daily basis. I know me and I know that if the gear is uncomfortable, hard to use, or in any way inconvenient, I'll find a way to avoid using it. My Darien and A.D.1. pants fit perfectly. They go over my regular pants and fit comfortably. Adding the hip pads decreases the flexibility, increases the insulation factor (and temperature, especially when it's already hot out), and makes the pants fit a little tighter. I can't say that any of those "features" are comfort oriented. So, I opted for the least protection possible because I know it is more than I had before and there is a fair chance that I'll stick with wearing it after the fragile old fart freakout is over. I'm still thinking about the hard shells, though.

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