Club, Endurance and Isle of Man racer, been riding bikes since 1970 something, got the bug sitting on the back of my dad’s 400 Four. First ride was an Italjet followed by RM80 and YZ125 dirt bikes, current bikes range from agricultural to exotic. Writing about bikes for four years.
Rukka Armaxion Jacket
Rukka has been working hand-in-glove with Gore-Tex for many years and was the first company to manufacture a laminated Gore-Tex laminated motorcycle gear. Rukka have active collaboration with suppliers like Gore and DuPont, new materials are developed and their suitability for functional clothing is tested.
Founded in Finland in 1950 by Roger Störling initially specialising in jogging wear. The earliest products were made in the kitchen of an old farmhouse in Kokkola on the west coast of Finland in 1953 they broadened their product range to include waterproof rainwear. Ever since Rukka has developed and manufactured technical functional garments.
Rukka motorcycle gear is top of the line and comes with the top of the line price tag with the jackets retailing at £989.99. Like most things you get what you pay for and this is no exception.
As soon as you pull the jacket on you can feel the quality of the materials and you start to understand why you have made the big investment. I have been testing the Armaxion Jacket for the last few months, it has been worn in all conditions, including heavy rain and snow. I have been using the jacket to commute and recently on a trip to the Seattle Olympics where I rode 220 miles in the pouring rain one day. There was not a single drop of water through the jacket.
The Olympics are on the edge of the Canadian Rocky Mountains, riding at altitude through the snow peaks I never felt the need to use the thermos lining, I was comfortable wearing just a t-shirt under the jacket. The Armaxion it’s more than capable of handling the UK’s climate. The jacket and trousers were extremely comfortable. The pro material in the jacket is designed to work in a temperature range of minus 5 to +30.
The Armaxion Jacket is the top-of-the range garment and as such is highly specified. Its features are there for a purpose and it's a jacket built to last.
The base of this jacket is a 500 denure Cordura front DuPont, this is specifically designed for motorcycle abrasion resistance. The outer shell is Gore-Tex Pro, a three-layer laminate which gives the ultimate in water and dirt repulsion and breathability. The shoulders and outer sleeve have a further reinforcement of Armacor which ups the protection and retains breathability. (Armacor is a combination of high-tech fibres aramid (Kevlar) and Cordura)
Unlike some jackets that have Gore-Tex between the exterior and lining, the Rukka has its Gore- Tex on the outer layer, meaning water doesn’t penetrate the outer layer of the jacket - the rain just runs off it. It’s really effective in the rain, with the water just rolling off the exterior. You can visibly see this in action. You can shake the jacket off after wet use put it away and when you go to use it again it’s a dry jacket. Whenever I’ve worn the jacket in the rain, I have been completely dry after taking it off. The membrane is an active one which means which means that it is 25% more breathable than standard membranes. This means moisture is moved out of the jacket much quicker and makes the jacket drier inside and more comfortable.
There is a storm flap behind the main zip ensuring any water that might find its way through the zip does not reach you.
On the inside, Rukka D3O Air limb protectors running through the shoulders arms and back. All meet CE requirements. This armour was especially developed for Rukka, It’s comfortable because and moulds to the shape of the areas it’s covering, making it less noticeable than harder armour. The substantial back protector can be removed. The bonds between the molecules in the armour goes hard on impact offering protection the go soft again so they are a multi impact product.
A removable detachable thermoreflective inner liner with 60g insulation is provided. I found it really easy to remove and replace the lining. The sleeves are secure and there was no problem of the lining creeping up or getting caught up when I took the jacket off.
A custom fit is ensured thanks to the soft neoprene collar with an adjustable wind flap. There is a detachable collar of elastic Gore-Tex Stretch material, this extends almost all the way up inside the helmet. This was very useful in the rain, I never got any trickle down the neck.
The Gore-Tex storm cuffs keep that vulnerable area draught and water free. Also featured are two outside pockets. There is adjustment Width adjustment on upper and lower arm and hem to get the perfect fit.
The jacket has reflective graphics to enhances the wearer's visibility both in the daylight and in the dark.
In warmer weather the jacket can be worn just with its mesh liner and the waterproof vents open. There are ventilation openings on back and with long 2-way zippers on the sides, these vents channel air into the jacket. The vents on the back are exhaust vents and draw the air through. When I opened the vents I could feel them working straight away.
There are four waterproof pockets; two inside including mobile phone pocket and two outside. One pocket in detachable inner liner. Rukka say the inside pockets are waterproof.
Best quality zips are used throughout and connect to the Armaxion trousers. The trousers come with all the technical attributes of the jacket including adjustable knee protectors. In addition, AirCushion and Rukka Antiglide system of Keprotec in seating area. Detachable braces are included. There is a non-slip pad in the crouch area. I found this useful on really long rides as I have a hard low profile seat on one of my bikes.
For the UK there is an extended 6-year warrantee, there is a replacement jacket loan scheme in place, if you need to return your jacket for any reason you will be sent a loan jacket.
This two-piece suit can take you anywhere in the world – and back again. I would recommend this jacket.
RRP £899.99 (Size 62+ £989.99)
RRP £649.99 (Size 62+ £989.99)
Update October 2017
I have just ridden from London to European Bike Week in Faak am See Austria. I took the long way round riding 2,800 miles. At least 2,600 were ridden in rain some torrential I was also caught out in a snow storm in the Italian Dolomites.
The sun was shinning when I planned my trip and I did not expect such adverse weather.
The Jacket kept me bone dry. Less could be said for my choice of wearing jeans and taking a lightweight rain trouser. My bottom half was soaked through. On the second day I bought another lightweight suit and wore both over my jeans. The result - I was still soaked!
I had my Rukka Armaxion Jeans couriered overnight to my hotel. The lightweight trousers were relegated to being a bike seat cover. I was comfortable and completely dry for the remainder of the trip.