I have been reading up on a few forums about riding gear. I have found that many people have been complaining about ICON gear. I have not found any reasons why ICON is a horrible product or examples. To me, ICON has some good gear like Joe Rocket or Alpine Stars. What is up with the hate towards ICON? I am looking into buying some gear from them soon after my deployment. The denim pants paired with the armour and shorts would be fine for me. What is your take?
Icon historically has focused on LOOKS and not protection. The quality of the construction isn't quite as good as Joe Rocket, and not NEAR the quality of Alpinestars. Many Icon jackets do not feature CE approved protection in the elbows/shoulders/spine (which is pretty much standard in most higher-quality gear). And some Icon gear is just somewhat "disposeable" in that some of it won't last more than one riding season (I've seen this partiocularly with their gloves).
That said, I think they are little by little improving the quality and safety features of their offerings, AND we do have to credit them with the recent surge in OTHER manufacturers coming out with flashier, more colorful and unique designs on their gear (as opposed to the traditional single or two-color offerings).
And I read something recently that mentioned Icon would soon be offering full track leathers, so that alone says they're working hard to make a better, safer product.
Whatever complaints anyone has about Icon gear, however (i.e. there've been countless threads on other forums about the Icon Kitty line, and it being bright pink or blue), and that people who wear that kind of thing are only riding for the attention, etc... My thinking is this: I'd much rather someone be in head-to-toe hot pink leather with fringe than in no gear at all. If by offering "cute" or "blingy" gear, it gets someone who previously objected to wearing gear to think twice about it, then I'm all for it.
And as a sidenote: I've heard many, many complaints about Icon helmets being of inferior quality. However, many people fail to realize they're actually produced by HJC (so they're a good middle-of-the-road lid... not the quality of Shoei, Arai and Suomy, but better than the entry-level lids).