Lidl and EN13594:2015 ….

Lidl Level 1 motorcycle summer gloves - 2016The local Lidl had a few bits of bike gear in the other day. Some open-face helmets, casual jackets and summer gloves. The gloves are marked CE and had a symbol on the label that I’d not seen before. Below it is written EN 13594:2015 ……. so when I got home I looked it up.

Most of the information initially came from French websites, where it seems motorcycle gloves are going to become compulsory items to wear in the near future and could well use this as the minimum standard allowed. It turns out that EN13594 involves a bunch of tests – burst/abrasion etc and is graded as Level 1 or Level 2. Level 1 must be abrasion resistant for 4 seconds and knuckle armour (if fitted) absorb 9Kn (5J) of energy. Level 2 doubles the abrasion resistance to 8 seconds and halves the energy transmission. The legislation appears to become mandatory in 2018 but can of course be complied with now, so expect to see gloves appearing throughout 2016 with these symbols on the labels.

EN 13594:2015 motorcycle gloves

So back to Lidl …….. Here’s a budget store selling approved and tested (Level 1) summer gloves for €15.99 ( approx. £13)! OK, they are entry-level approved, but hey at least they are tested to some standard, unlike the vast majority of gloves I looked at on various UK mail-order websites. Who’d have thought it! 😀

RPMT (Register of Post Test Motorcycle Trainers)

RPMTI finally got around to renewing my RPMT (Register of Post Test Motorcycle Trainers) membership before it expired, another few weeks and I’d have to start the whole registration process over again – Riding test, Instructional test and Instructor Theory test …. not a very savoury thought, given the time and cost (£390-£540 as of November 2014). By Jimini that snuck up rather quick!

RPMT was set up by the DSA ( Driving Standards Agency – Now the DVSA) back in late 06 or early 07, I forget which. The idea is to bring a level of professionalism and regulation to an otherwise unregulated industry. The simple fact is that unlike pre-test motorcycle training (CBT/DAS), in the UK anyone can set themselves up as an ‘Advanced Instructor’ with no training or qualifications, it’s been done and people have been hurt through unsafe tuition. So if you are looking to take your road-riding skills up a notch, make sure the Instructor/Coach/Observer (whatever!) is suitably qualified  – you can’t go far wrong with any of these – IAM, RoSPA (I’m on the last page. 😉 ) , DIA or someone on the RPMT register.

It’s all in the wrist …

Talk to the hand ......Just as the last of the crappy weather ebbed away and thoughts of having a run out on the Capo sat warm and snug in the front of my mind …… life came along and handed over a great big slap in the face by resurrecting an old injury. Over the past five decades I’ve been fortunate enough to only break one thing in my ageing chassis – my right wrist, unfortunately three times!

For the past 13 years its been ‘unstable’ or so they said, certainly it’s dished out its fair share of misery from time to time, but always controllable with over-the-counter meds. Until this week, when ‘unstable’ finally fell off the proverbial perch. So now I know how a provincial hospital in Italy works ….. and I can only say a heartfelt thank-you not only to our own doctor in Civitaquana, but also all the staff we met at Penne hospital who made my visit a positive experience.

So now I’m trussed up like a Christmas Turkey, stewing nicely for another week before I go back to hospital. Meanwhile the sun shines, the road dries out and the Capo sits silent ………. I don’t rightly know which of us is more miserable! 🙁

That’s quite enough of that thank you very much! I’ve time to spare, a working left hand and a computer to play with – so how about designing an active cruise control to give the wrist a bit of respite on those longer journeys? Let’s see now, one microcontroller, a Pololu motor driver board and a GL1800 cruise module might just get the ball rolling …… it’s tinker-time!!!!! 😀