It’s part two of the Kushitani love-fest with a pair of their Winter gloves. Or as they are officially called, Kushitani K-5560 Gore-Tex Gloves. Catchy name.
These gloves were kindly loaned to me by nephew, after even more kindly we bought him them for Christmas. You give a little, you get a little. We both had matching pairs of Racer Winter gloves that have been fantastic for the last four years. Mine are still going strong, but his have given up the ghost and are leaking and letting cold in. Having been so impressed with my GPR-6 gloves I naturally looked at Kushitani’s Winter range. These Bobby Dazzlers are their top-spec Winter glove and fulfilled all my…sorry, I mean my nephews requirements. Why’s that then?
Looks: Strikingly similar to the GPR-6 in looks, they are nice to look at. Check out the lovely little pattern in the black on the wrist. They aren’t all “look at me”, “look at me” or shaped like medieval gauntlets or lobster claws like some Winter gloves. They do a couple of colour variations with the bulk of the glove being black. On Instagram you would probably tag them “Dark Stealth Edition” or something dramatic like that.
Warmth: They have the words “Kushitani Warm Device” printed on them. It would be very Un-Japanese to advertise your gloves as something they aren’t. So they must be warm right? Correct. They are very warm. Easily warmer than my pair of Racer gloves and I didn’t get a hint of cold even cruising along at 60mph when it was 1°C outside. Thank you Thinsulate thermal lining. I am honestly surprised at how a glove with this thickness is so warm. You would expect a glove with these thermal properties to be a lot bulkier than they are.
Waterproofness: Let’s be honest this is the most basic and important requirement for any Winter glove. One that some big brands fail horribly at. These are constructed from a Gore-Tex lining, leather and synthetic leather and both my nephew and I can report they are 100% waterproof. Enduring the shittiest of rain sodden days and the best Bible-themed downpours with ease. They also dry exceptionally quickly. If they’d been invented these bad boys would have been on The Ark.
Comfort: You might have read my gushing comments on the comfort overload I experienced when trying on the GPR-6 gloves. Well, prepare to be bowled over. These are like sliding your hand inside a sheep’s coat. One of those fancy merino wooled sheep from New Zealand. They are soft, supple and cosset your hand in a warm embrace. Changing back to my Racer Winter gloves this week has really highlighted just how comfortable the Kushitani are. The Racer now feel bulkier, hard and tighter around the wrist by comparison
Fit: The fit is similar to the GPR-6. These are the same size I wear in the GPR-6. Again the thumb is slightly longer than some European manufacturers. One aspect I really like is the slim profile wrist. My current Racer gloves are an absolute ball ache to fasten and get under my textile jacket. No faffing with the Kushitani at all. Slide right in.
Feel: Winter gloves are always a trade off between bulkiness, thermal properties and feel. I think the greatest bit of praise I can give the Kushitani is, they make any other Winter glove I have, feel clumsy and bulky by comparison. There are probably Summer gloves that don’t translate feedback this well through the palms.
Protection: Like their top-level GPR-6 Racing gloves these use the snazzy K-Foam floating protection on the back of your hand. It’s a different approach as I talked about before. Soft absorbent material to absorb and cushion your hand in a spill. Rather than hard armour, which in my experience can end up transmitting the force to your hand and causing injury.
Price: £139.95 from Kushitani UK. Based on my time using these they feel worth it. Most decent Winter gloves with Gore-Tex will run you at least £100. My Racer pair were £99 (reduced from £130) nearly four years ago. It might seem expensive, but I would expect these to last at least four or five years of constant use and with that in mind I think they are well worth forking out for. Dear Santa…