AXO Waterproof Boots

We think you’ll love our newest line- AXO motorcycle boots! Amazing quality and versatile application. Check out our full selection of boots for all the styles. Here is a highlight of some waterproof motorcycle boots to get you through the season.

The AXO Freedom Adventure Waterproof Boots are great for all terrain riding. You’ll want these boots with you on your next adventure. At $300.00, they are a great addition to your boot collection.



We also have the AXO Q GT Waterproof Boots – Black which are offered for $178.99. A more affordable option, these boots are great for all weather riding.












With many more styles available for all types of riding, we’re sure we’ll have an AXO boot that will suit your needs. Check them out on our site today!

Motorcycle Helmets on Sale: Weekly Specials

If you’re into bargains, here’s a good place to check every week: Our Weekly Specials page has all the best motorcycle helmets on sale! We put our top inventory items up as they go on sale to make sure you have access to the best prices. These items are brand new in box but at reduced prices as they move way to make room for the newest lids on the block. You can find awesome motorcycle helmets and jackets at much lower prices if you check in from time to time. Sign up for our newsletter too and be notified and these items drop in price! Here’s a sample of the offerings:

Shoei Qwest Helmet – Goddess TC-6

MSRP: $492.99

Your Price: $358.99

HJC RPS-10 Helmet – Ben Spies Monster

MSRP: $549.99

Your Price: $414.27

River Road Race Leather Jacket – Black

MSRP: $199.95

Your Price: $135.99


Alpinestars Rain Gear Makes a Splash

It’s the perfect time to try out some new Motorcycle Rain Gear! It’s the time of year when the weather is slowly warming up but the rain has us dreaming of better days. We have a great new addition to our rain gear line up that might help!

Alpinestars rain gear gives you some new options to get out in the elements. The new Alpinestars Mud Jacket is an interesting addition. WIth clear, see through material. It is a great cover up for your regular riding gear.

The Quick Seal Out Rainsuit from Alpinestars is another option for dry riding! With elasticized cuffs and reflective details. It has all the features of great rain protection!

Don’t let winter’s last wet onslaught keep you off your bike! Stay dry when you try Alpinestars new rain gear!






The new Bell Mag-9 Sena Bluetooth Helmet: Cutting edge technology at its finest!

ell Mag-9 SenaGet ready for the next big thing! The Bell Mag-9 Sena helmet was designed specifically to be used with the Sena SMH-10 Dual Bluetooth Headset, a device that won webbikeworld’s Best Product of 2010.

Sena Bluetooth Headset

“Our Santa Cruz design/engineering team spent countless hours studying the market and potential Bluetooth partners before developing this new design that provides an unmatched riding experience in both terms of both sound and comfort” said Chris Sackett, Business Unit Director for Bell Powersports.

“Unlike many communication systems, there is no cutting, drilling or tearing apart of your helmet, and riders who already have the Sena SMH10 can simply transfer it to the Mag-9 Sena.”

The Mag 9 Sena is an open face design and offers a convenient drop-down sunshield. The liner is removable and washable and the cheek pads are contour style for an excellent fit.

Bell Mag-9 Sena Red

This gorgeous lid is offered in several classic colors as well as a “rally” graphic.

For touring riders, this helmet will reinvent your ride with it convenience and awesome Bluetooth capabilities. With superior comfort, great volume and sound quality, the Mag-9 Sena helmet offers it all!



The all New Shoei GT-Air and J-Cruise Helmets!

 Shoei has once again “wowed” us with their new Shoei GT-Air helmet.  The Shoei GT-Air helmet includes several features that enable riders to adapt to ever-changing conditions.

A built in sun shield is distortion-free and blocks 99% of UV rays.  The Shoei GT-Air’s pinlock system offers the most effective anti-fog protection.  Additionally, the CNS-1 shield has a wind and waterproof seal.

The Shoei GT-Air helmet improves cool-air intake and eliminates hot-air with its ventilation system.  Three upper vents improve air intake while exhaust outlet vents reduce pressure suction.

 Shoei will also be releasing another impressive model in their 2013 helmet line-up, the Shoei J-Cruise.  Many have mentioned this is not your average open face motorcycle helmet and we agree! Shoei packed the J-Cruise helmet with several innovative features that keep riders safe and increase overall rider comfort.  The Shoei J-Cruise helmet reduces road noise and wind turbulence with an advanced shell, shield aerodynamics, as well as liner components.

The J-Cruise helmet includes an internal sun shield for instant relief from bright sunlight.  Like the internal sun shield, the CJ-2 shield protects against 99% of UV rays.  A distortion-free CJ-2 shield provides a wider and taller field of vision.

Solve your sweaty hair problem with the Shoei J-Cruise motorcycle helmet.  The J-Cruise’s EPS liner allows cool air to flow through tunnels created in the material for increased ventilation performance.  Shoei’s exclusive Max-Dry liner material prevents heat buildup around the head by absorbing sweat and dissipating moisture quickly.

Shoei strikes the balance between airflow and silence with their new GT-Air and J-Cruise Helmets.

Helmet City Rider’s Report: Sidi On Road Gore-Tex Boots

Sidi On Road Gore-Tex Boots

I was on a day ride in the Netherlands some years back: It was one of those things that winds up  in a bar/cafe in the late afternoon. There were 25 or so bikes in the parking lot when I arrived and the place was getting a little crowded. One of the first things I noticed when I walked in the door was a a guy in full leathers wearing a really sad bedraggled pair of what were were once pink bunny slippers. Genius!


It took me about two seconds to figure out that this was an actual solution to a motorcycling foot wear conundrum.  If you wear a pair of boots that are strong enough and stiff enough to give you any sort of real protection when you decide to separate yourself from your ride at speed then you will honestly not be able to walk around comfortably after you get where you are going. The dutch guy took off his decently made, stiff boots when he got to the cafe and pulled the bunny slippers out from under the seat. That’s the honest tradeoff – either you buy boots that you can use for your post-ride perambulations or you buy a pair of boots that will give you maximum protection for those potential get-off mal-events.


Every moto boot maker will talk about how comfortable their high protection boots are for walking around but, truth be told, they ain’t. Again, you either get the protection or you get the  boots you can wander around the village in. I opted for the Sidi On-Road Goretex this season when it was time to shop for a new pair of ankle, toe, and shin protectors. I like them. They are still stiff but they have loosened up a bunch and I can make it to the store and back without the classic Frankenstein monster gait. These boots, these Sidi On-Road Goretex boots, are sort of the standard by which other touring and sport touring boots are judged. BTW, another good boot in this category is the Sidi Way Mega Rain Boot.  The Sidi On-Road Goretex boots are stiff enough to provide good shin protection (ever been whacked a good wallop in the shins by your pegs?) They even have a nifty lateral malleolus protector disc at the ankle bone protrusion (google “peroneal tendon subluxation“ if you have some spare time.) The Sidi On-Road Goretex have good lugged soles and also a breathable Goretex liner to wick out moisture buildup. These boots are relatively easy to get in and out of because they have a velcro lined flap that you can peel open to widen the boot. If you look at the front of the Sidi on-Road boots they sort of look like utilitarian welder style work boots: they are not like the off-road style boots that are a cross between plastic ski boots and something that Lucas would put on his Imperial Storm Troopers.


I decided to take a page from the guy in that cafe in a small town below Eindhoven and I found a pair of sneaks to put under my seat. For comfort and basic black style I really like the Simpson Crew Shoes – we have them. They are soft and they scrunch down a bit under the seat. When you put The Simpson Crew Shoes on after a ride they feel like slippers. What they lack in rolling bunny eyes they more than amply make up for in comfort. The soles are thick, but not too thick, cushiony but not bulky.  So, I have it knocked now: Sidi On-Road Goretex as my regular ride boot and Simpson Crew Shoes for apres-ride lounging or strolling.



Gerde Applethwaite


ARAI RX-Q in Hi-Viz

Arai RX-Q Helmet - Hi-Viz Fluorescent YellowArai RX-Q Helmet – Hi-Viz Fluorescent Yellow

I have been riding around with my new Arai RX-Q helmet all season and I am now well prepared to give a rider report.. The Arai RX-Q is a replacement for my five year old Arai Corsair RX-7. I replace my helmets every five years because the oils in your scalp over time weaken the foam core inside the helmet. Most manufacturers recommend that you replace your helmet no later than every five years.

As I mentioned in an earlier post I jumped on the Arai RX-Q after I found out that this new helmet release was being made in Hi-Viz. The Hi-Viz really works and I recommend it to everyone. Sure, I know helmet choice is often about looks and style and Hi-Viz may not be the look that everyone is going for. I get that. But I get the feeling that the world is slowly ratcheting its way in the direction of safety and visibility. I recently read that French motorcyclists are going to be required to wear H-Viz Jackets within the next couple of years. I need to find out more about that.

My new Arai RX-Q is a bit on the pricey side but I can only echo Arai’s older ad campaign and say “what’s your brain worth.” The quality of the Arai RX-Q is evident throughout and I have only one complaint about the helmet – more about that later. I think the thing that I like the most is that it is by far the quietest helmet I have ever ridden with. Wind noise is substantially diminished in the ARAI RX-Q although I still wear my ear plugs. The cheek pads (although a bit rougher in feel than my old Arai Corsair RX-7) are designed in such a way that they really wrap around your face. The feel is snug without being constricting. The cheek pads are, of course, removable and washable and it is possible to pull them out and remove some adjustment bits of foam to make the fit right for you: you can also just replace them with varying size fitments to get it just right for your skull bone.

The Face shield on the Arai RX-Q is of the standard Arai SAI variety that you find across the line. It is a thick and very clear shield and there is nothing flimsy about it – after all its Arai here. The peripheral vision is wider with these SAI setups too. If I have one complaint about this helmet it is in the way that the face shield comes off and on. Mind you though this is a complaint I have about every face shield I have encountered so it is not necessarily Arai specific. There is a YouTube video of a guy popping an Arai SAI face shield off and on like it was nothing. I don’t know how he does it. For me the process is awkward and cumbersome and I am thankful that I don’t do it very often. I ride with polarized sunglasses so my need to swap out face shields is minimal: I just pull them to clean them.

The rest of the helmet build on the Arai RX-Q is a blessing indeed. The vents pop open and shut with a gloved hand with ease and I really like way that they have positioned them. My old Arai Corsair RX-7 had a vent in the forward, top, middle of the helmet (up front between the left and right roof vents.) That vent is gone in the Arai RX-Q and with it is gone some of the whistling that I had when I tilted my head back a bit. Voila, gone. Instead the new Arai RX-Q has these nifty vents incorporated into the top of the face shield and they extend into the helmet – again, easily flickable with a gloved hand.

I haven’t had the opportunity to do much rainy weather testing on the new helmet yet but that will be coming up in no time at all: where did the summer go?

All in all I have to say that this Arai RX-Q is the best helmet I have ever owned (no, really!) and I expect it to last me for another five years. As far as visibility goes, well I had some friends who saw me five blocks back ahead at night in busy downtown traffic and they picked me right out. That’s exactly what I am looking for in visibility. – To see and be seen.

Gerde Applethwaite

Getting Ready to Ride in the Rain

Here at Helmet City we are already thinking about the upcoming rainy season. The riding weather is superb right now but we are always getting new gear in and that makes us take another look at the options. I have a history of ignoring the ATGATT dictum and as a consequence I have a small compendium of soaked-and-cold-to-the-bone stories to tell around the campfire.

One of the more miserable events was the time i was riding through France (North to South) during the Bol D’Or Weekend. It was late summer and I thought I would be fine with just a leather jacket, boots and jeans: oh, I was so wrong.  Not long into the journey the sky grayed up and the temp. started to drop. I could see it coming and about the time that you could smell the rain in the air a mist started to fog up my face shield. I figured the road would start to get slick as the water brought up the oil on the expressway so I slowed down.

I looked for a place to pull over in order to snug up my jacket but figured it could wait until I got gas. By the time I pulled into the massive super station I was drenched. There were bikes everywhere as it was one of France’s biggest Moto weekends.  I looked around at the assembled crowd clustered around the filling pumps and I was the only fool in a leather jacket and jeans. Rain Water sloshed in my boots and now that I had something else to focus upon other than keeping the bike upright I started to shake from the cold. I still had many more wet miserable miles to go before I made it to my campsite.

Everyone else at the petrol emporium was either wearing some sort of multi-season gear and just going on about their business or they were tearing into their bags for rain-specific outer coverings. I ached with envy and swore I would never do another ride without thinking through the whole rainy weather scenario.

I am slightly embarrassed, after laying out the story above, to say that I have yet to get it sussed. I do have the boot thing sorted with my new Sidi On-Road boots. Nice. Here’s what I figure: I can either get a nice multi-season jacket and wear it along with the reasonably water resistant textile overpants I am fond of riding in these days or I can go for the small folded-up  rain suit rig that scrunches down under the seat or into a panier or tank bag. They both have their advantages. There are also the full suit options.  I had one once back in the mid-eighties and it was extraordinarily comfy in all but the hottest weather.

This season I am trying to plan ahead and find myself touring through our wet weather options. We have a section of the website dedicated to a collection of our rain gear offerings. If I shift some tools around under the seat I think I may have room for a small scrunchable rain suit. So, the master plan at the moment is to get something that lives under the seat all the time and then look more closely at my rain jacket/pant or rain suit options. This setup will have me covered in all possible scenarios and avoids the potential for future sad sack gas station shivering.

I currently have a couple of Tourmaster jackets and I am happy with their fit, workmanship and price.  So, I think my choice for rainsuit (oversuit) type rain gear is going to be either their full suit, the Elite II or their Sentinel Jacket and pants set. Both of these Tourmaster rain suit options are designed to be worn over your riding jackets and pants. None of the Toumaster rain gear clothing comes in hi-viz but amongst their many color offerings there is a bright yellow. Again, I wonder why these gear manufacturers are not putting out more hi-viz riding wear.

The other possibility I am considering is a jacket and pants combo that is designed as rain gear but is not an over-suit.  Although it is a bit costy I really like the looks of the Icon Patrol in their Hi-viz, mil. Spec. yellow. The Icon Patrol duo is loaded with features not the least of which are their magnetic storm flap closures, full CE armor and even a water bladder option.

On trips when I know I am going to be heading out into inclement weather the  hi-viz Icon Patrol would seem to be the way to go for me. The thought that they put into this set up really shows and if I am riding in nasty weather I want to be seen on the road. Then again there will be plenty of times down the road when I get caught out in the rain as I did in France. The Toumaster Sentinel or elite setups would be easy to pack and to don when the sprinkles start.  I will let you know what I decide and I’ll do a wetness test at the advent of this year’s rainy season.

Gerde Applethwaite.

Conspicuity: The Value of Hi Viz

Arai RX-Q Helmet – Hi-Viz

When I geared up for this season the biggest item I bought was a new helmet.  I have been riding with either Shoei or Arai helmets now for more years than I care to count. It is no surprise then that this year when I needed a new helmet to replace my 5 year old Arai Corsair I popped for the Arai RX-Q Hi-Viz.  When I found out that Arai had a HI-Viz helmet that fit my head I didn’t hesitate. I have been slowly heading toward Hi-Viz for a while. When you watch the Olympics the shoes that leap off of your hi-def screen are those yellow green Hi-Viz track shoes. I recently bought a set of work gloves at the big box hardware emporium and among them was a pair of bright yellow gloves. Up until now I had never seen bright yellow work gloves. Hi-viz is slowly (too slowly, I think) starting to infiltrate our visual awareness.

I live in the San Francisco Bay Area and I ride a bicycle as well as a motorcycle. Over the last few years I have been slowly adding reflective stickers to my bike helmets and I am now  riding with a worker type lime green safety vest. All of the gear I buy now will likely be Hi-Viz.

There are just too many idiots on cell phones now and too many distracted drivers for me to not to take the whole conspicuity thing seriously. I am not preaching to the unconverted. If you think that lime yellow/green gear just isn’t for you then there are lots of safe(r) options out there for you in terms of new gear. I just want to be seen as far away and by as many drivers as possible . Its that simple.

I’m not the only one thinking this way. My copy of David Hough’s 2nd edition “Mastering the Ride” arrived not too long ago. It was on reserve for a couple of months awaiting the July release date.  Its great. I recommend it because it really starts a decent discussion about how to save your own life when you are riding.  If you live in the Bay Area you have the advantage of access to both Friction Zone magazine and Citybike. Both of these are motorcycle rider publications and both of them just had articles relating to David Hough and to riding safety. Its on the minds of a lot of folks these days and there is no better ambassador than Hough.  This book is the followup to his excellent “Proficient Motorcycling” and they are both great.

On page 91 of ‘Mastering the Ride’ (available at:  he talks about the importance of being seen when you ride and the importance of conspicuity gear. Here is a part of what he has to say:
” One of the conclusions if the Olson Report was that wearing a brightly colored (they call it “fluorescent”) jacket was very effective, especially a jacket in the bright-green spectrum.  For whatever reasons, having a brightly colored fairing was not as effective as wearing a brightly colored “upper-torso garment.” For riding at night, the report showed considerable benefit in having reflective panels in the riding jacket.”

“… Hi-viz Lime Yellow “jumps out” on a primal level because it is not naturally occurring, and because the human eye is most sensitive to light in this part of the spectrum. (The eye is least receptive to red and black.) The brightest color possible under visible light, Hi-Viz Lime Yellow is more effective than fluorescent colors which, because of their chemical makeup are dependent on the UV radiation in sunlight to “glow,” making them less effective at night and in vehicle headlights.  The piercing Hi-Viz lime Yellow carries plenty of visual “punch” even under incandescent and low-light conditions.”

I cannot recommend the Hough books more highly. I am fond of my Arai RX-Q Hi-Viz helmet and will write up some of my thoughts about it in another blog post. Get out there – and be seen.

Gerde Applethwaite