Cruiser Tested: Alpinestars WR-3 Gore-Tex Glove

(February 2008)

The quest for functional, form-fitting gloves is neverending. But find a pair you like and you'll wear them until the seams separate. Unfortunately, there's no such thing as a four-season glove so we fill our quiver with at least two pairs: one breathable pair for the summer and the other, waterproof for the rain.

One rejoinder to the call of the wet is Alpinestars WR-3 Gore-Tex glove. Alpinestars describes it as "all weather" but we found that this glove is most comfortable at temperatures of approximately 60 degrees or colder - otherwise it'll be too warm. But that warmth is welcome in the winter, and it comes in the form of Thinsulate insulation - in a layer thin enough that it doesn't compromise one's feel of the controls. The outer shell is made of leather, while a full Gore-Tex insert keeps water from getting in and simultaneously lets perspiration out, thereby keeping one's hands dry. There is padding on the knuckles, back of the hand and side of the wrist. The palm has a suede patch for better grip and there are adjustable Velcro straps on the wrist and gauntlet to secure the gloves.

Like the Alpinestars Ridge Waterproof Boot reviewed elsewhere on this website, the WR-3 gloves were acid-tested in monsoon-like conditions. Like the boots, the WR-3s performed flawlessly, keeping my hands completely dry. They also kept my hands reasonably comfortable as the ambient temperature was probably a bit below the ideal range for these gloves. Fit is excellent, with none of the fingers either too long or too short, and there was almost no fabric bunching where my hands gripped the bars.

I happen to prefer all-leather gloves for their resistance to abrasion in the event of a fall. The downside to natural hide is that even with a Gore-Tex insert, it will absorb water in a rainstorm (thus compromising the ability of the Gore-Tex to vent perspiration, and also allowing heat to escape via conduction).

At $130, the WR-3 gloves aren't cheap but on the other hand (pun intended), they aren't cheap gloves: these should last you at least a couple of rainy seasons. The Alpinestars WR-3 Gore-Tex Gloves gets the Cruiser thumbs-up for their excellent fit, quality and function.

Available through www.alpinestars.com or your local motorcycle apparel dealer.

- Evan Kay