All Rights Reserved © 2013 Thomas W. Day
|This is what a brand new, un-abused pair of Aerostich Elkskin Gauntlet Ropers looks like right out of the package.|
For 75,000 miles and almost 5 years, my Aerostich Competition Ropers have been my go-to gloves for touring, all-weather commuting, and general road and track abuse. This past spring, I had a surgical nurse in one of my MSF Basic Rider Courses and she abused me of the idea that any glove that doesn’t cover some critical areas of the wrist could be considered serious protection. I will admit to being slightly freaked out, but I decided to wait for the 2013 Very Boring Rally III for my upgrade.
After looking over all of the options, I went for a version my old favorites, the Ropers in the uninsulated gauntlet version. The price is more than right, considering the incredible protection and comfort; $97. In fact, they were $80-something at the Really Boring Rally.
A thing to know about the Ropers is that they are really, really tough. The upside to that is that they are great protection. The downside is that they take a while to break-in. The Gauntlets are no different. I wore them all through the last of the 2013 season and they were the gloves I picked to carry on our winter trip to the southwest.
This is what one Aerostich Competition Elkskin Roper Gauntlet looks like at 12,000 miles and six months. The twin is missing in action.
I put a lot of miles on these gloves and expected this “test” to last for a couple more years before the first report. However, another Aerostich product, my prototype AD1 jacket, ended the test prematurely. One of my few gripes about the Darien jacket is the side pockets. The Cordura material is slicker than snow and pretty much anything that gets stuffed into those pockets will squirt out at the worst possible time. In fact, when I replaced my 12 year old Darien pants, I went for the AD1 version because the pockets are Velcro closed. I have lost a fortune in pocket change and, at least once, my billfold to those slippery unsecured pockets.
This time, the similar pockets in the Darien jacket bit me in the ass. So, all I can say is the Roper Gauntlets are good protection, tough as expected, but short lived because I gotta wear two gloves. Fortunately, TorC has a fine western wear store and I replaced the Ropers with a great pair of cowboy gloves, also made out of elkskin for $30. They aren’t gauntlets, but they’ll do till I get back home and buy replacements.