Friday, January 23, 2009
Product Review: Gore Tool Glove--Warm Enough, But Not Very Durable
When I first got this glove, I thought it was the best glove I had ever used for between 30 and 40 degrees. It was has great temperature and moisture regulation, and the silicon gripper on the finger tips added confidence when braking and shifting. They are moderately water resistant, but even when wet, they retain some warmth (though not as much as when dry). The glove is effectively windproof, which is their best and most reliable feature.
It was a short lived infatuation. First, the silicon gripper strips started peeling off during my second ride with the gloves.
Unfortunately, the fabric under the silicon gripper is rather slippery, so the glove went from confidence inspiring to slippery and unreliable. In fact, they are so slick that I don't use them in adverse conditions anymore. Too bad, as they are warm enough for use in Spring training, but I can't risk slipping off a wet brake lever in an emergency. These gloves are no longer in my race bag, they are relegated to commuting on my fixed gear where fingertip grip is not important.
I value durablity. I plan on cycling for many years to come. When I buy a piece of cycling gear, I expect it to last for more than a season. In addition to the gripper issue, the seams of the glove are not robust. My left wrist fastener is ripping after light usage. I have had these less than a year and have used them infrequently (I have 6 other pairs of full finger gloves) due to the above mentioned issues and yet they are ripping. I should add that I am careful with my clothing. I have 10 year old cashmere sweaters that that still look despite regular use. I don't beat on clothes; there is not good reason for the ripping seams other than low quality.
There are other seams ripping and stretching all over the gloves. Overall, I have found the finish work on the gloves to be poor.
The Velcro closure on the wrist is rather thick. While this secures the glove firmly on the wrist (until the flap rips), it has the side effect of rubbing against your jersey or jacket, this results in pilling and unnecessary wear on the end of the sleeve. If you are careful, you can position the flap to guard against this, but is this something that you want to be thinking about?
While I find the gloves to be comfortable and well designed overall, the lapses in quality force me to give these gloves a poor review. On top of all of the problems, these gloves are very expensive at $55.99 MSRP. For the same money, you could buy a set of Pearl Izumi gloves with leather palms and fingertips that will last for 10 years. I wouldn't recommend buying these gloves for any price.