Do you really have Kevlar riding gear?

Xray profile of Draggin Jeans

Just because your motorcycle jeans, jacket, gloves or helmet claim to contain Kevlar doesn’t necessarily mean it really is Kevlar.

American chemical company DuPont invented the strong and lightweight synthetic fibre in 1965 and now many motorcycle products claim to contain Kevlar. However, DuPont has been issuing show-cause letters to these manufacturers to prove they are using Kevlar. So far, 180 products have been removed from the market for falsely claiming they include DuPont Kevlar.

kevlar jeans
Draggin Twista jeans

The only motorcycle jeans company in the world to pass all the stringent DuPont safety tests is Draggin Jeans of Australia. The Melbourne-based company is the first licensee to be approved to use the DuPont Kevlar Preferred Licensee logo. Sales manager Wil Cope says it means customers can be assured Draggin products contain Kevlar.

“No one else has developed in the safety arena the way Draggin has,” he says. “We have developed our own lining, while most others just call up Pakistan, China or Bangladesh and ask for Kevlar, but they can’t guarantee what they are getting. Some of them just use yellow cotton and some are actually flammable. Put a match to them and up they go. The customer just doesn’t know what they are getting unless they have the DuPont logo on them.”

Draggin’ Jeans, which started 17 years ago, has passed CE level 1 and 2 approval and was also the first motorcycle jeans manufacturer to pass strict DuPont criteria to attain any licence agreement. Now they have passed further testing to gain a “preferred licensee logo”, says Draggin founder and CEO Grant Mackintosh.

“This is a big deal for Draggin, motorcyclists and the wider motorcycling community,” he says. “We are concerned with the safety of motorcyclists and that is why we are proud to become an official licensee of DuPont Kevlar fibre for our motorcycle jeans.”
Meanwhile, Wil says other manufacturers who claim to use Kevlar have or will receive letters from DuPont and have to prove they contain Kevlar. “A lot of them have had to remove Kevlar branding from their products,” he says. “They don’t have permission from DuPont to use that wording. Others might be using a Kevlar derivative, however they wouldn’t be using DuPont Kevlar. Others using Kevlar are using a different type, so it doesn’t offer the same protection to the same standard as DuPont Kevlar.”

Grant says the licence with DuPont is an important part of their technical development and will “encourage us to keep improving rider safety, comfort and freedom”.
For example, Draggin’s Classic jeans have their protective lining in the major crash points. It features DuPont Kevlar fibre which has passed all the safety tests for CE Level 1, offering two-and-a-half times the abrasion resistance of the next best motorcycle jeans tested.

7 Comments

  1. Just because they don’t contain ‘Kevlar’ doesn’t mean they are not proper rider protection. Kevlar is just a brand name, not the actual material. They would all still use poly-para-phenylene terephthalamide (the material that Du Pont trademarked. Du pont are the original manufacturers), so don’t go throwing out your expensive jeans because of something the internet stated. How do I know this? I am high school in year 12 student studying engineering and for the past term my class has been doing a case study on polymers and poly-para-phenylene terephthalamide was one of the major topics within the case study.

  2. Draggin may be the best but why do they screw Australians with their pricing? Checkout the differences in USA pricing v Australian. Even allowing for exchange differences the Australian price is significantly higher than the the USA price. Is this simply a rip-off?

  3. Hi

    My name is Wil Cope, Sales Manager from Draggin.

    I thought I would post a comment regarding a couple of the comments above.

    Mitch is correct, there are other brands of Aramid fibre, one of which is Twaron. Both Draggin and DuPont’s concern is regarding product that is badged or branded as Kevlar when it isn’t. As Mark mentioned in the article above when we have tested product we have found many different linings in jeans branded Kevlar which aren’t. The worst was thin yellow cotton. DuPont have created a license that will give riders confidence the product they are using reaches certain safety standards however this is not aimed to cover the entire industry or even all riding jeans.

    David’s comment regarding UglyBros is exactly the issue at hand. I have confirmed with DuPont and Draggin are the only DuPont Kevlar Preferred Licensee worldwide. For a company to be offered this and use this logo you must have fully CE Approved product, which Draggin has with both the C-Evo and Holeshot. None of the UglyBros range have the features that would allow them to be CE Approved.

    Thanks

  4. I have just looked back at the http://www.suus.com.au & http://www.uglybrosusa.com Suus is the Australian importer of Ugly Bros Kevlar jeans and other motowear and they do have the DuPont Kevlar Preferred Licensee logo on their Kevlar products. I bought a pair of their DuPont™ KEVLAR® reinforced 2 Slub–K jeans a couple of weeks ago and found them to be a great fit and the price was good too. Their shop is at 335 Darebin Road, Thornbury Vic. or as I did purchase on line. Good to see that there is some alternatives about.

  5. While the article makes a few good points it misses one major item. Kevlar is a brand, just like hills hoist. Aramid fibers are the working material in kevlar and is manufactured by many companies and marketed as many different names. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Aramid

    Kevlar may be the most well know, however is far from industry leader in technology and weave designs. So while other brands may not have dupoint approval, they may just be using a different brand such as twaron. http://www.teijinaramid.com/aramids/twaron/

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