Ural Gear

Ural riding gear – its harder than you would think

The hardest part about riding a URAL is trying to find gear with the right look that goes with the bike.  I didn’t think my ultra-modern bright colored textile adventure riding gear would go with it and steampunk looking gear might not be safe. I tried the extremely vintage approach with a Bell Custom 500 Helmet and Halcyon MK49 Goggles.  The goggles were very cool, and I really liked them, but the helmet was uncomfortable, hot and the combination didn’t work out at all. The Bell Custom 500 helmet was so uncomfortable that I went back to a Shark Evoline 3 ST Helmet that I had laying around which has neat functionality but is as heavy as an anvil. I learned some valuable lessons; gave one of my kids the bell helmet, hung up the goggles and started over.

Bell Custom 500 Helmet and Halcyon MK49 Goggles

The Ural Delay Factor (UDF) was becoming a real thing.  A lot of people suddenly becoming interested in motorcycles when they lay eyes on a Ural.  The WWII German designed motorbike that was made by former Soviet Union is in the juxtaposition of now being considered “cute” like the original Volkswagen beetle.  While I am not standoffish, I do not like to be seen as “cute” and decided to toughen it up just a little bit. I needed gear that was “vintage” but gave an overall “tougher” persona.

Ural has a limited-edition jacket made of waxed cotton that is styled after a 1973 tankers jacket.  That seemed to be the right look old school material with a hint of military influence. Since the jacket had a somewhat military look I remember seeing a “jet fighter/storm trooper” type helmet that might go with the jacket and give the whole thing a military and thus tougher look.  The helmet turned out to the be the Scorpion Covert which to my eye looked more finished then Bell Rouge or the Built Brutus alternatives. The Scorpion helmet doesn’t really have the ability for clamp mounted communications which drove me to the Sena SMH10R because it has a smaller exterior footprint and attaches with adhesive.

To summarize the jacket drove the helmet decision and the helmet drove the communications decision and thus the review of all three items in one post.

The Jacket

https://www.imz-ural.com/shop/

Tanker Jacket

Available in black or green, this limited-edition waxed cotton jacket was inspired by the 1973 Military Tanker Field Jacket. Limited to just 100 units, it was developed in collaboration between Ural and Olovo and made with 100% British Millerain Waxed Cotton Exterior. With a large interior URAL logo and Limited-Edition Ural X Olovo Interior Patch with Removable Hood and Waist Belt and hidden Interior Pocket with Cordura Lining.
Let’s start with the strange items its European so the zipper is on the wrong side of the jacket if you’re an American. Its very comfortable and not a heavy jacket so in 65-78-degree weather it’s the perfect jacket. The green is a very black colored green and it essentially looks black.  My URAL is green, so I went with the Green but from a distance the jacket looks grey/black. It has nice deep front pockets that a lined and comfortable, but they are not secure or waterproof and a single internal pocket and it fits an iPhone Plus with no issue.

I wanted a jacket with the right vintage look and British Millerain waxed cotton is about as authentic and vintage as it gets.  The Millerain website gives you a great history of waxed cotton and the story of Millerain which are interesting reads – however the website gives you no information on caring for waxed cotton as a material – so I assume you treat it like any other riding gear and only time it gets washed it when you happen to ride it in the rain.

Olovo &British Millerain

https://www.britishmillerain.com/history/

https://www.britishmillerain.com/our-story/

I love the fact its waxed cotton from a British company that’s has been doing it since the beginning.

I love the fact its limited edition.

I love the fact its styled from former military tanker jacket. This is most likely thanks to the people at Olovo they seem to do fashion based on the “Soviet period”. https://olovomoscow.com/pages/about-us

 

The Helmet

http://scorpionusa.com/products/helmets/street-helmets/covert/covert-ratnik.html

The Pros

The helmet looks bad ass and is very light weight.

The Cons

Its not a full helmet, has limited visibility and is noisy

I know you’re not supposed to do “pros” and “cons” at the beginning of the review your supposed to write at least one paragraph and then put pros in green and cons in red at the bottom but let’s be honest if I did that everyone would have just skipped to the bottom.  The reason this helmet looks so finished is that the front and rear of the helmet (removable) help “merge” the helmet shape toward the body so that you don’t have the typical half helmet mushroom head look. This allows an aggressive styled visor that is good to look at but limited to look through. The helmet is rather noisy but it’s not a full helmet so treat it as such for sizing and the amount of noise your expecting. For example, if you don’t have a windshield it will get very loud over 55 mph. I know I keep comparing it to a full helmet which is unfair as it looks like a full helmet but is lighter and more ventilated then a full helmet because its only a half helmet and thus the noise. All of that said the helmet is incredibly light the weight it is under 3 pounds and feels much lighter. You will want ear plugs if your going over 40 mph for any amount of time.  If you want some easy to use ear plugs, try “dubs” they cost about $20.  Dubs come with a case and are re-usable and are fast to use ear plugs that say in place.  I have a problem with the little foam ear plugs and the time it takes to put them in properly and not having them fall out 15 minutes later.  I have also had problem with other ear plugs “for motorcycles” that go in too deep and almost impossible to remove.  The Dubs may not be the quietest, but they are by far the simplest to use, work with all my helmets and reduce the wind noise significantly. They are the only ear plugs I use for motorcycling.  https://getdubs.com/

The Communication

https://www.sena.com/product-category/smh-series/

SMH10R and Scorpion Covert Ratnik

Sena SMH10R Low Profile Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset and Intercom.

I have a couple of SMH10 and a 20S I want to tell you the SMH10R is a different animal. The SMH “R” does the job its intended to do – be a low-profile non-clamp communication system. Having said that I will probably never get one again because I like the jog dial and multiple buttons.  Sena makes great products but when you slim things down you have to make compromises and I didn’t realize how good the jog dial on the SMH10 / 20S was until I didn’t have it.  Another strike against the “R” is that you must deal with a lot more wires (and the connectors) and getting them under the liner is a much bulker option – so its thinner on the outside but thicker on the inside.  The “R” still has great Sena quality and it does have feedback that helps a lot.  The feedback is in the form of tones, and the tones help you know how long you have held down the button, which by the way turns out to be tremendously helpful.  Let me explain the “+” button can turn up the volume and it also skips to the next song the difference is in how long you hold it down and the tones let you know if you have held it down long enough and can let go.  In summary if you must use a non-clamp communication system then it’s the one to use.  Let’s be clear here I need a Sena in my helmet I have become addicted to Sena’s in my helmets, however, if you don’t have the non-clamp constraint then start with looking at the 20S as its a much better product and easier to install and use. https://www.sena.com/product/20s/

The MotoLizard