I have lots of very good high-end motorcycle gear. It’s one of the benefits of working in the industry for so long. But while I have all the very finest off-the-shelf stuff, I have never had a custom-made-to-fit-me-only bit of gear. Ever.
That has all changed when these marvels arrived from the good people of Held in Germany the other week.
Regular readers will know I have long sung the praises of these German gloves. I hold them to be the very best motorcycle gloves on this earth for reasons I have made clear in my reviews. I have worn them for some years, I have seen them being made, I have seen them being tested, and I have also been fortunate enough to enter the Bavarian inner-sanctum of the father-and-son team who make the custom-fitted gloves for Held customers who want such wonders.
Held’s off-the-shelf stuff is superb. The gloves all come in half-sizes and you’d have to be some sort of three-fingered alien not to find a pair that fit you.
But its custom-made gloves are another level of beautness and occupy a rather wonderful exclusivity.
The gloves I have are a custom version of Held’s top-end $260 SR-X sports-glove. That is a substantial amount of cash for a short glove – but then all-kangaroo-leather with a stingray-hide palm and Titanium knuckles is what you’re paying for. You would expect to pay a little more for a set of gloves specifically crafted to fit your hands and your hands only. And no, I cannot tell you what they cost because each pair is different.
If this is all too horrifying then stop reading now and ride off to enjoy your Aldi specials.
However, you are a man of means and taste, and you understand just how special a bespoke item of riding gear is, then read on.
Of course, I am not a man of means at all. The day I could afford to spoil myself with tailor-made gear has not yet dawned and is unlikely to dawn this side of the grave. I only came into ownership of these gloves because Ray (the Australian importer of Held gear and Schuberth helmets) felt I should experience what only well-sponsored professional racers and people with money get to experience, and hopefully manage to communicate it to people who might be interested in such a glove.
And I think he enjoys watching me carry on like a beastly savage seeing electricity for the first time.
So he sent me the link to how one is measured for this extravagance – basically, you put your hand on a bit of paper, trace around it, take a few measurements here and there with a tape measure, decide on what colours you want and where you want them on the gloves, then scan it and send it off to Held. You will be told how much. You will pay it. Some weeks later, your gloves will arrive. Mine took a good deal longer because I was not a paying customer and paying customers always take precedence over free-loading writers – and rightly so.
When you put them on, they will be snug. Do not panic. They are meant to be snug, and unless you’ve bolloxed up the measurements, it will take a few hours of riding before they properly shape themselves to your hands. And they will do just that because they are made just for you.
And then, and only then, will you know and appreciate what a pair of custom-made gloves is all about.
And it is all about absolutely perfect fit and comfort. If you really want to understand what “fits like a glove” means, then this is it.
And of course, feeling that little bit special about having something made exclusively for you.
One cannot put a price on that, I guess, because self-indulgence has not price.
WOULD YOU LIKE A PAIR OF HELD M2M (Made-to-Measure) GLOVES CUSTOM-MADE FOR YOU?
Please email Ray at email@example.com
If you want an off-the-shelf version of the SR-X glove, then look here.
By Boris Mihailovic