I used to work with a man who was very passionate about his hobbies — a real hands-on type of guy who enjoyed taking things apart just to put them back together again. Whenever I saw him, he’d tell me about his BMW motorcycle that he completely re-built and was constantly customizing. He painted the bike a bright sky blue and bought a rain suit to match. The brightness of his suit and bike made him the “Where’s Waldo” of our small town. When anyone questioned why he’d wear a full rain suit on the sunniest day in July, he always said the same thing, “ya’ never know what Mother Nature will bring.”
Wherever your dealership and customers are located, no rider is immune to rain — except maybe those in California. Nonetheless, selling apparel that addresses Mother Nature’s demands is a must.
There are several different options to keep in mind for customers, whether they want a full rain suit, a two-piece or just a jacket, bringing in inventory that will meet a range of customers is your best option.
Materials vary for rain gear, but they all must be able to deflect water to keep the wearer dry. The list of potential materials includes polyester with PVC backing, nylon, polypropylene and more. No matter what material the customer chooses, a highly rated waterproof jacket will keep rain on the outside, help riders stay dry on the inside and provide wind protection.
The key to rain gear is the technology used to keep water out, which includes laminates and coatings. Laminates are the bond between a waterproof and breathable membrane and the fabric. The laminate is designed for harsh conditions motorcyclists might encounter. The coating is a film that is spread across the inner surface of the fabric. Coatings are lighter and less durable than laminates, but still provide a range of protection.
As far as retaining body heat, rainwear technology is designed with a coating that is large enough for sweat vapor to escape but too small for rainwater to enter. For customers who want optimum breathability, a mesh lining provides excellent air circulation without retaining moisture.
In order to keep the rain out of the inside of the apparel, a double closure, like the combination zipper and Velcro offers the most protection during a ride.
Another important feature in raingear is reflective material. We all know that it gets dark when it rains, therefore, reflective material is vital for the rider to be seen by other vehicles when there is limited visibility due to inclement weather.
Staying up to date on the technology that keeps your customers protected will boost your sales while keeping riders safe and dry.