In my quest for a new pair of riding pants, I am rediscovering how much it sucks.
1. Why can't manufacturers:
- Provide size charts for each model of pant or jacket, you know, using sizes, figures, and points of measurement that can actually be applied to that specific product. They took the time to design the piece of gear, someone somewhere knows how long/big around the various points are!
- Use a standardized sizing system/description.
- Make sure that if a pant is supposed to zip to a jacket, getting the same size in both ensures they are in fact the same size.
2. Why can't retailers:
- Stock more sizes in more styles above XS and S
- Carry brands and styles women might actually wear
- Have a couple of clean dressing rooms so we can try gear on without using a dirty public restroom (or, alternatively - clean the restroom!)
Ok, now that I've got that out of my system - things are 110% better than they used to be, it's just that things used to be so horrendous that it doesn't take very much trying at all to achieve a 110% improvement.
ANYWAY.... I'll get to the real topic of this thread. I have been scouring the interwebz for a decent pair of textile pants to go with my existing jackets, that fit and are functional and don't cost eleventy-billion dollars.
As I mentioned in my jacket thread, last week I ordered a pair of Alpinestars pants that was supposed to zip to my new jacket. Therefore I ordered the same size pants as the jacket, and the size chart even reassured me that they would fit. They came in yesterday and they aren't even close! They are like 2 sizes smaller than they should be. And the jacket is loose on me!
I have also had my eye on Spidi's Glance Pants for over a year at least, but the whole sizing mystery has prevented me from ordering them. So I found a shop in Jacksonville that worded their website as though they had several sizes in stock. Could it be?? Alas I called them today, and they don't have any in stock. They have some in their warehouse in CA and PA. ("Your" warehouse, huh? Riiight...)
I have to give them credit though, they offered to order an additional size for me. All I had to do was order one and pay for it and make a note on the order on their website, and they would get the two sizes I wanted to try. Not bad customer service I guess. At least they are trying.
Before I did that I decided to check around locally one more time and stopped by Cycle Gear. They don't carry much in the way of major brands when it comes to womens gear. They have their Bilt line, a few A* jackets, some gloves and that's it. So I tried on some of the Bilt mesh/textile pants. One of their friendly sales dudes offered his help and started looking for pants for me. (And how much fun is that to tell a good looking young guy what size you need if it's not medium or less?) They didn't have my size (SHOCKER!), and the next size up was WAY too big, and the next size down was too small. Though, the main reason it didn't fit is that I could get them zipped up all the way - yet there was a 4" gap in the back that was not reduced by fastening the pants up. Explain that one! Not that I was too disappointed. They were all hideous, unflattering and bulky anyway.
Ready to give up, I had a quick look myself to see if good-looking-young-man missed anything. He hadn't looked at the leather pants, because I didn't say I wanted those, but what the hell let's see what they have. They have a style called Clio, which look like track pants. Sort through the sizes... XS, S, XS, S, M, S, XL, S, XXL... looking closely at each. Everything under the XL looks like children's clothing, the XL looks like an 8 (which in reality-land is medium), so I grab the XXL and head to the one dressing room - which has someone in it, and have to settle for the ladies restroom.
After making a nest of paper towels so there is somewhere clean to set my purse, I try the pants on. And OMG, they fit like a glove, and look and feel pretty darn good!
My only experience with the Bilt brand is the $19.99 tank bag I bought on sale about a year ago. The bag hasn't done too bad, though the straps don't look like they are going to last much longer. The look and feel of these pants isn't all that bad. They don't feel cheezy, and while the leather isn't ultra-top quality, it's definitely not the worst or even close to the worst. I have a MotoGP jacket that feels like cardboard, and these pants are much, much better.
And they are $149. Can't really beat that, so I decided to give them a shot. Though I was really looking for textile pants, these are heavily perforated and honestly are just too good to pass up considering how well they fit.
Got home and put them on to see if I can zip up my boots over them (which is usually a problem every time I get new leathers), but no big deal with these. There is a wide area of stretchy material on the back lower leg which makes it easier to get my boots zipped. Best of all, the 8" zipper on the pants mates with the zipper on my Syed jacket so I don't have to have either of them altered. And they look pretty good together. Dammit! I'm going to have to like these pants! LOL
Time will tell if they are worth it, quality-wise.
Looking on Cycle Gear's website, they have the same pants on sale for $80, but I am not going to complain. I'm just so happy that there was a local store that had a pair of pants I like, can afford and fit into - they earned retail on this one.
BILT Street Gear - Women's Clio Leather Motorcycle Pants - Cycle Gear