Kawasaki ZX 11 - Gear Box

BMW Savannah Suit
You'd be smiling, too, if you got to parade around in BMW's new $1099 Savannah suit. Gore-Tex pant/jacket liners keep the elements at bay, while light armor and reflective shoulder stripes handle protective duty. There are even pockets in the back to warm a passenger's hands. Expensive, yes, but then again, so's your Beemer. See your local BMW dealer or browse www.bmwonline.com.

Slippery Stuff
How'd they get them to stand up like that? At least Castrol's new line of synthetic/synthetic based motorcycle oils makes sense, whether you choose the Act-evo's "active protection molecules" semi-synth formula, the R4 Superbike antifriction/low-viscosity fully synthetic goop, or the tough-as-nails GPS semi-synth liquid. Yours from $3.95-$9.25 per quart exclusively at your motorcycle dealer.

Mad Maps
Oh, the tragedy of seeing another brilliant idea that wasn't ours come to fruition. MAD (Motorcycle Adventure Destinations) Maps are designed by motorcyclists, and detail everything from "biker friendly" establishments to the best secret roads of the area. Maps of the San Francisco/Bay Area and California's Wine Country are available now, with other states to follow. $6.95 from local bike shops or $10 (including S&H;) from (877) MAD-7899; www.madmaps.com.

Bedtime Reading
By page two of Running With the Moon (softcover, 334 pages, $16.95) author Jonny Bealby's wife has died in his arms; by page five, he's off to circulate the African continent on his Yamaha Super Tenr in search of some meaning in his life. Yeeeesh. Kind of makes last Sunday's breakfast ride seem kind of trivial, doesn't it? Available from Whitehorse Press at (800) 531-1133 or www.WhitehorsePress.com.

Bike Log
In our infinite wisdom, we told you last month ("New Bike Setup," June '00) that keeping a maintenance log for your scoot is a smart idea. This 3.5-by-5.5-inch Bike Log-which lets you log services performed, personal data and even trip info-is just the thing. Laminated cover stock and metric conversion table are nice touches. $8.95 from www.bikelog.com or (716) 381-3841.

ZX-11 Six-Piston Stoppers
Clearly, a post-breakfast 185-mph blast on your '93-'00 ZX-11 will be more enjoyable once you've affixed these tasty Nissin six-pot calipers to slow you down. BrakeTech has even machined some lightweight billet aluminum caliper brackets that allow for easy bolt-on to the OE rotors. Yours for $669.95 (longer brake hoses available separately) from Ferodo BrakeTech at (805) 376-9565 or www.braketech.com.

MC Tested:
Triumph SP Carbon/Kevlar Gloves
From the "when's the test?" dept. comes this year-old pair of gloves from Triumph. Sometimes we're waiting until something goes wrong, but these comfy, precurved, cowhide, finger-ventilated Korean-made SP C/K gloves have simply plugged along, absorbing 10,000 miles of photo shoots, rain and sun with nary a whimper. Carbon/Kevlar abrasion panels (and double-thick leather in the palm, upper hand and fingers) show no signs of abuse after a low-speed FNG street crash, and sun-fade resistance has been stellar. (The fact that the black leather never stains our hands in the rain is also a huge plus.) The Kevlar stitching has remained intact, and the SP's leather shows only slight-to-medium wear from the clutch, brake and throttle-intensive areas. Even the Velcro on the wrist strap/gauntlet still sticks like new. And kudos to Triumph for a subtle logo that means we can continue to wear these no matter what we ride.

Price: $89
Rating: HHHHH
Verdict: Top glove from Triumph, let down only by the presence of some sexier new styles on the market. Subtle "T" logo may still be too blatant for some.

Available from your local Triumph dealer. Call Triumph directly at (770) 631-9500 to order a catalog or to locate a dealer nearest you.

HJC AC-10 Pridmore Replica
In a big move away from its midpriced positioning, HJC has developed a new Snell approved top-of-the-line race lid for street or track. This Jason Pridmore replica (approximately $310-$330 at press time) features everything you'd expect from a quality lid: fiberglass/Kevlar composite shell, flow-through ventilation system, removable DuPont Coolmax liner and UV-protected quick release face shield. Due for release in late summer. Dial up HJC at (562) 407-2186 for a dealer near you.

Alpinestars Gear
Christmas in July? Do yourself a favor and don't wait until December to get your hands on Alpinestars' new armored, lined, 1.1 mm-thick leather Eight-O jacket ($449), full-on waterproof/leatherpalmed Twist Gore-Tex gloves ($119.95) or the mighty/tasty/comfy armadilloed S-MX race/tour boot ($229.95). What, no eggnog? Visit your local dealer or get in touch with Alpinestars at (310) 891-0222; www.alpinestars.com.

Sidi Waterproofs
It's no secret that we love Sidi's waterproof stuff, so naturally we had to order a pair of its new GT Sympatex boot ($275) to see if the top-grain Italian leather, inner-lace closure system and thick nonslip rubber sole is as comfy and durable as the breathable Sympatex inner liner is waterproof. It is. Order from (877) 789-4940 or www.motonation.com.

Beef Up Your 'Stich
Along with its armored pants, Bohn Body Armor has also come up with an Aerostich Roadcrafter version of its Carbon/Kevlar Back Protector ($139). Specially placed Velcro tabs allow for easy fitment into the tabs of your 'Stich. A fine way to get generous coverage of your shoulder blades, kidneys and tailbone. Dial up ActionStations at (530) 898-9269 or www.actionstation.com.

Alien Space Probe
No, no, we're kidding...what we've got here is 3-In-One's new Oil Telescoping Spout ($2.90), a five-inch-high bottle that sprouts a flexy, six-inch-long plastic tube and dispenses the company's multipurpose oil to those, er...hard to reach places. From your local auto-supply/hardware store or visit www.wd40.com.

DP Supersport Pads
We'll be slapping sets of these on our F4 and R6 right quick. DP's new Supersport HH+ brake pads promise ultrahigh friction levels, a quick 10-mile break in period, no brake dust or brake fade and a new blue ceramic heat shield that reduces heat transfer so your brake fluid stays cool when the pace warms up. $36.95 from your dealer or ring (716) 681-8806.

Get it? Dunlop makes tires, tires are made of rubber, you wear this cool logo stuff.... And now that we're done making lousy jokes, we'll tell you that $9.95 gets you a Dunlop baseball hat, $14.95 gets you the cotton Vacationer hat and $12.95-$19.95 gets you the cotton Dunlop T-shirts. Good tires, good clothes, good night. Order from www.dunlopgear.com or ring up (800) 521-8841 for more info.

Crash Tested:
Prexport RS1 Racing Suit And 599 Race BootSo here comes Sport Rider's feature editor Evans T. Brasscannon barreling around Willow Springs in his spiffy Italian Prexport RS1 perforated leather suit and full-grain leather 599 Race booties, only to lowside at 50 mph when a mouse runs onto the track and knocks him off line. Damage? The suit suffered minor scuffing and no thread separation (an errant footpeg tore a hole in the stretch-Kevlar crotch panel), while only the top outer layer of the boots' carbon/Kevlar ankle shielding was ground off under the sliding bike (the thick inner layer remained intact). Evans is fine, too, and felt confident enough to wear the gear again for his next race. After slipping on a thick back protector, 5-foot-11-inch/185-pound E.B. found a Euro size 54 suit fairly well-fitting, although the suit's extra-wide leg openings needed to be folded over to fit into the comfy, size-nine boots. Recommended.

$899.99 (RS1 Racing Suit)
$279.99 (599 Race Boot)
Rating: HHHHH
Verdict: Track worthy, crash worthy, need we say more? Suit's fit isn't as exact as some of the competition.

Top Gear Accessories
P.O. Box 1477
Slingerlands, NY 12159
(877) 871-BOOT
(518) 449-8876 fax

Body Armor Pants
A mix of nylon/lycra material and Euro CE standard honeycombed armor, these Bohn Armored Pants ($149) slip on under your jeans and give impact protection on your hips, thighs, knees and shins. You shouldn't even have to spring for a larger pair of Levi's, either. Say, is that armor in your pants or are you just glad to see me? From ActionStations at (530) 898-9269 or www.actionstation.com.