RSD Clash Perf Leather Jacket Review

Roland Sands Design updates their classic rocker jacket for warm weather riding

RSD Clash Perf Jacket
RSD Clash Perf Jacket in Oxblood RedStaff

When it comes to upper body protection, there are few things as effective and stylish as leather. But when I roll out of my front door at 8:00 am and it's already almost 80 degrees and rising quickly, the last thing I want to do is pull a heavy, stuffy jacket on for my ride to work. This Summer, Roland Sands Design takes some of our favorite riding jackets and reworks them for those hotter months—adding perforated leather, it's now easy to stay covered and protected without overheating.

Not all perf is created equal. I learned this the hard way after sweating my way through a “summer leather,” in Florida last summer. Put simply, bigger holes and better placement make this jacket effective. The perforated leather covers the entire front of the jacket as well as the side panels on the back to let the hot air exhaust. The elastic fit sections and adjustable strap on the side are the same as the regular Clash and work just as well, though the Clash seems like it was designed for people a little more barrel chested than I.

RSD Clash Perf Jacket
RSD Clash Perf Jacket rear viewStaff

Being on the slimmer side with long limbs, I have to go up to an XL to get the arms’ length to fit, but this results in a little wider fit than I would prefer in a couple points. For starters, the excess of fabric around my spaghetti arms starts whipping around in the wind when I go too fast and makes my arms all red and itchy. I half-wish there was some sort of adjustability there to eliminate this, but also like the look of the design without any added straps or elastic—it’s sort of a tradeoff. The body of the jacket is a little wider, which also means that my vest doesn’t fit over it very nicely. So while it’s great to be able to add a layer and block the perforated leather, I’d have to go up a size in the vest. Just because it doesn’t fit me perfectly doesn’t mean it isn’t perfect for another body type.

If you hit traffic or end up sitting at a red light for too long, you may have a sudden realization that you are still wearing leather out in the sun. Yes, this thing absolutely rules when you're moving, but there's no way for it to cool you down when there's no wind, so things heat up really quickly at a stop.

RSD Clash Perf Jacket
RSD Clash Perf Jacket side view in Oxblood RedStaff
RSD Clash Perf Black
RSD CLash Perf Jacket in blackRSD

The perf jacket has all the iconic styling of the OG Clash jacket like the coffin-shaped, studded elbows and the large coffin-shaped back panel and is available in black or this Oxblood Red. The leather used is all of the highest quality, which took ages to break in on the original Clash, but the perf leather is a little softer. Still full quality, the perforation just makes it a little nicer and more flexible straight out of the box.

Nobody associates RSD with cheap gear, but they associate the name with gear that will last. Roland Sands’ jackets stand the test of time and many of my good friends hold theirs in the highest regard as their favorite jacket of all time. The head honcho over here, Jordan, wears his Ronin religiously and the thing looks incredible after a few years of hard wear. At $650, it’s right up there with our most expensive jackets and let’s be real—it’s not for everybody. But if you’re looking for a top-quality jacket that’s going to last you for ages and just get better with age, the Clash Jacket is a perfect choice.

For more information, check out RolandSands.com