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Rocket Parts Gloves
By Jeff Jones and Paul Mirtschin
Not the Dart?
Californian company Rocket Power Parts specialises in clothing for the MTB and 'cross scenes, with gloves, jerseys, shorts, headwear and socks its staple products. Rocket Parts started with the GTO full finger length glove, designed with the downhill enthusiast in mind. The Charger and Spyder gloves then came along, both full finger length mitts, and most recently the Dart shot into stores, their first short finger glove.
The Dart is definitely not a downhill glove, and is aimed at the road rather than the MTB market. The palm is constructed out of a thin piece of leather, with a small pad on the heel. The top part of the glove is made out of four-way stretch lycra, and is similarly light in construction.
It's certainly the lightest glove that I've ever worn, and is quite comfortable on long rides. I find correct bike positioning to be far more important than glove padding to reduce aching hands and arms, so wearing a glove like the Dart is unlikely to create any more discomfort than any other short-finger glove would.
Thankfully I didn't get the opportunity to crash test the glove, but by the looks of things, it would offer less protection than a thicker glove in case of an accident. If there is any hand sliding involved, then a few millimetres of leather is not going to last long.
The Dart is a good warm weather road glove that is quite well suited for racing. It will keep your hands from getting sunburned, but will not keep out the rain and snow.
Features: Short finger style, with Clarino palm and thumb slider. Eva
pad on heel of palm. Four way stretch Mesh top. Thermalweld Velcro wrist closure.
I spy a Spyder
If you ride in a location where you are constantly getting wrapped across the knuckles by tree branches, then you need a full fingered glove. Unfortunately most full finger gloves are like an oven in summer, so by the time the ride has started your gloves are soaked with perspiration. Enter the Spyder.
Rocket Parts call the Spyder "The world's best vented full finger glove" and they are not wrong. Made from the same four-way stretch lycra and leather as the Dart, the Spyder is the perfect glove for a mid summer ride with the local crew. As with the Dart it won't give you a lot of crash protection, but it will give you the feel of a fingerless glove while giving you some of the protection that a full fingered glove will.
I've used these gloves almost exclusively over the Australian summer, including too many rides in 35 degree heat with 80% humidity. And as long as the ride was a crash free affair, it was like riding without a glove for the most part. And if the sky opens up the gloves don't fill up with water either.
Bash protection wasn't as good as my downhill gloves, but that was to be expected. You do need good grips however, as the thin leather lets you feel every lump of rubber. But I didn't feel any discomfort on any of my three bikes.
If you are a cross country rider, these gloves are a must. If downhill is more your bag then consider these for your training rides.
Features: Full finger style, with Clarino palm, wrist and thumb slider.
Perforated fingers. Thermalweld closure. Eva palm pad. Terry nose wipe. Four
way stretch Mesh top.
What do you think of the Rocket Parts gloves? Let us know