BILT gear thoughts? - Kawasaki Versys Forum
Rider's Gear Discuss protective riding gear

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post #1 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 04:53 PM Thread Starter
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BILT gear thoughts?

I had to stop and buy some better winter riding gloves after this mornings ride. I stopped at a local "Cycle Gear". I am coming up on completing my first year of riding so I don't know alot about anything. I noticed at the store that they carried a lot of BILT gear. What do you guys think of the BILT line of products? They seemed very reasonably priced in comparison to the other brands, but are they worth it?
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post #2 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 05:07 PM
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Bilt is their in house product line. They make some pretty good stuff for the price. I have a pair of their gloves and they are nice enough. The boots seem okay to. I haven't had problems and will probably buy their products again
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post #3 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 06:07 PM
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most of the helmets are made by Z1R ... Not the best, not the worst ... Boots are low quality ... Irregular ... I would recommend hitting the clearance deals for better name brands at similar ... Pricing

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post #4 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 09:58 PM
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most of the helmets are made by Z1R ... Not the best, not the worst ... Boots are low quality ... Irregular ... I would recommend hitting the clearance deals for better name brands at similar ... Pricing

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post #5 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 10:03 PM
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I'm a big fan of my local CycleGear. I have a few different Bilt items and I am I ride 365 days a year, so my gear gets a lot of use. That being said, I really like my Bilt Tempest boots. The quality is pretty good for the price point. They fit great and seem to be wearing as well as any I have ever had. I also have a pair of Bilt winter gloves and summer gloves, and they also seem to be holding up rather well. The summer mesh pants I have however, are a bit problematic. The zippers tend to hang up every now and then. I've learned to be very careful when zipping them up to avoid wasting 5 minutes getting them unstuck. For the most part, I am very pleased with the Bilt products I have, but I have learned to be more discerning as to what I buy. There are some things I can look at and tell I will not be happy with, while others, I can see really value in.
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post #6 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 10:06 PM
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Yeah, okay but get on sale. I got some Summer weight gloves last Fall on clearance. Price was under $20 and hey are worth about that. I have other gloves made by the big names I paid a lot more for. Easy to see the difference in build quality.

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post #7 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-04-2012, 11:54 PM
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http://www.getgeared.co.uk/?whence=

Some good clearance sales here and I got one boots-Pro Bike Street III from them.



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post #8 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 01:58 AM
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They occupy the bottom or value tier of motorcycle gear.

Nothing beats heated gloves in <40F range.

http://www.webbikeworld.com/motorcyc...cle-gloves.htm
http://www.tourmaster.com/xcart/prod...ctid=109&cat=9

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post #9 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 07:15 AM
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Can't say I'm a huge fan of the BILT line because I haven't had much experience with them. I have however caught a few good sales from Cycle Gear on Frogg toggs, KBC helmets, and oil. Also can't beat the fact that they'll balance a set of tires for you for free even if you don't buy them from Cycle Gear and mount them yourself (I really like that). If you don't mind internet shopping I'd recommend http://www.motorcyclecloseouts.com/. Some of it might be last years closeouts, but the price is right and they've always treated me well.

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post #10 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 09:13 AM
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Like most here, I've got two pair of BILT gloves: winter & summer, and each pair was under $20 (on sale) an serves their purpose well. Again - like others have said, the stuff isn't top tier quality, but it also doesn't claim to be. The guys there are helpful and I'm a big fan of supporting "local" stores - even though this is a national chain, having a local cycle shop in town and really close to me is very handy. It was about 40į when I rode there to get my winter gloves.

Next on my list is a pair of their boots (still on sale) - I expect them to last a few years, not forever, and that's good enough for the price..
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post #11 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 01:09 PM
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You get what you pay for. I was recently shopping around for a new jacket, and I checked out some of the Bilt gear. The build quality wasn't too bad, but one of the jackets had what appeared to be cardboard or something for shoulder/elbow armor. What?? I guess it's better than nothing, but when it comes to protection, I'd personally spend more to get more. You only get one chance when you hit asphalt, so why cheap out?

I used to have two pairs of Motoboss gloves, which I believe is another one of their hose brands. The stitching on the winter pair started coming out almost immediately and barely lasted through the season. The fair-weather pair I had appeared to be leather, until it started cracking and peeling and you could see it was a super thin layer of ??? on a fabric backing. Some of the current Bilt gloves look to be made of the same stuff. I wouldn't want to be wearing those during anything worse than a garage tipover...

Long story short, if you have nothing, then Bilt is 1000 times better than what you have. If you already have something, I wouldn't recommend Bilt as an upgrade. Save your $ and invest in some quality gear that will last for a while.
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post #12 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 03:30 PM
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My first helmet was a Bilt Solar (flip face) and worked out for me just fine. I've purchased 2 pairs of gloves from them. The second pair has insulation and work great for my short winter commutes. I tried them on in-store and they seemed fine, but once I actually used them on a ride about a week later, I found that they restricted my reach when shifting gears and breaking. I took them back for a larger pair. As I tried on the new pair, they seemed to be the same size as the ones I was replacing. It took trying on a few extra pairs to find a good fit.

I guess the point of my story is, while the brand is fine as entry level stuff, the consistency in construction isn't the best. Fortunately, their in-store return/replace policy in my experience has been great.
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post #13 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 03:31 PM
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I have a pair of their gloves, and for the price they are stellar. yeah, obviously a $150 will indeed buy you nicer gloves. I had a pair of the boots also and they cracked; Cyclegear replaced them on the spot without hesitation. I paid $65 for a pair of their fabric pants and have been pleased with them, but 5,000 miles later are they are looking worn. Haven't been down in em. Their stuff meets the gear need but is very much in line with the cost. I have been pleased with my stuff from there, stoked about their service.

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post #14 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 04:22 PM
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I tried on some boots. I was not impressed at all. Cheaper than Kmart products. I did pick up a couple reflective vests which do the job as well as ones costing twice as much. The bilt stuff is better than wearing sneakers, shorts, and brain bucket for those tight on funds. Their Sedici line is better quality, but still not the best.
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post #15 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 04:24 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dezertv View Post
most of the helmets are made by Z1R ... Not the best, not the worst ... Boots are low quality ... Irregular ... I would recommend hitting the clearance deals for better name brands at similar ... Pricing
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+1
+2

I was recently boot and helmet shopping and found the Bilt stuff to be pretty 'cheezy'. Stuff may be good for the short time, but I'd recommend saving up more money and buying higher quality and longer lasting gear. I equate Bilt stuff with Harbor Freight tools. If you only need it to work once or twice, it's worth it. Otherwise buy something else.
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post #16 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 04:49 PM
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I started out riding with really cheap Joe Rocket jacket and gloves but they started to wear out after only a year of use and were not that protective. Not saying you need super expensive gear but the really cheap stuff comes with a lot of compromises like less abrasion protection, lack of a breathable waterproof membrane, less precise fit, etc..

AdvRider.com has a lot of gear reviews.
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post #17 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 04:54 PM
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try here:

www.motorcyclecloseouts.com

Sometimes you have to settle for graphics or patterns that may not be the best match, but you get a quality product for a steal typically. Also, it may be 1 or 2 year year old designs or colors/patterns. BUT, you know you're getting a quality item.

I just bought a Joe Rocket RKT 101 (HJC AC-12) Carbon Fiber helmet that retailed for $450 and I got it for $140 shipped new in box. They have one more red one left in LG.

I have a SHOEI RF1000 on sale here for $125 shipped in LG worn 3 or 4 times. And is a MUCH higher end helmet than a BiLT.

YMMV

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post #18 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 09:15 PM
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I got a pair of bilt gloves I think for less than 20 dollars on sale.

Those gloves are the only thing I own from bilt. I was wearing them when I went down at over 50 mph and what can I say....those gloves held up perfectly with barely a scratch on them. I still wear them almost every day.
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post #19 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-05-2012, 09:59 PM
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Haven't tried "BILT" yet, but Cycle Gear used to have "Frank Thomas" gear from England as their 'brand'. I've bought and use quite a few of their jackets, pants and boots, here and in Canada. Only crashed once, a year ago, wearing a mesh FT jacket which protected me well during that 15 to 20 mph low-side, and I still use it. (Now at about 5 years old.)

I'm willing to try BILT, but right now I don't need anything.

Ed
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post #20 of 22 (permalink) Old 01-06-2012, 07:49 AM
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I like going to Cycle Gear and do buy stuff there. I tried the BILT boots, looked similar to my Firstgear. The feel and look was not as good as I had hoped, thjeir gloves are OK at most , when on a budget BILT gear is better than no-gear.

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