Originally Posted by markharf
Any explanations out there? Are we motorcyclists just so accustomed to acting like doormats that manufacturers know they can get away with it?
Ok, I feel better now. [/rant]
In my humble opinion, compared to say 30-40 years ago when motorbike stuff was universally functional (although limited by materials available at the time), today, buyers of motorbike stuff have become dedicated followers of fashion. Whether a doormat can be considered thus I don't know - maybe.
When new materials started to become available to manufacturers they had a choice to make stuff better suited to its purposes, or to bring in cosmetic designers to use the new materials to make products 'attractive' instead. It didn't take much research to decide which was the most lucrative path to follow.
And the incessant lifestyle and fashion marketing since, aimed at bikers, put the boot in.
I'm stunned now at the stuff that gets sold, and the prices, and have over the years stopped buying motorbike stuff and looked to other industries instead. Boots - military. Jacket/trousers - sailing/industrial. Farkles - Meccano (or similar). Luggage hardware including the old chestnut of protection from silencers - plumbing. None has failed me so far, particularly London-Cape Town.
All we need now is for governments to make certain items of clothing compulsory (already generally the case of course for helmets) and the end of 'ordinary' riding won't be far away.
The example I think is compulsory bicycle helmets in Australia, resulting in the collapse (so I've read) of cycling as a pastime. Maybe the fashion industry over there isn't quite so well marketed.
Perversely, I also use cycling stuff now as well (bracketry, pump, luggage), much more functional, which considering how fashion-conscious that industry is maybe destroys a big chunk of my argument.......
Talking of helmets, do they have drain holes in them now? In Paris once, years ago, I parked on a convenient pavement near Les Halles to use the swimming pools there. Like all other riders I left my crash helmet hanging by the strap on the handlebars. It was sunny at the time.
Returning over an hour later there had been a downpour. My helmet was full right up to the face opening. I wished at that moment I had a drill to make a hole in the top, so it wouldn't happen again.....