Oakley Pilot Glove or SI Assault Glove
I have yet to review a pair of gloves but these gloves have seen hard use from me over the past year and a half and I figure its time they get there day in the spotlight. I would also like suggestions on a glove to possibly replace these. It needs to be fairly breathable and not bulky and knuckle protection is a plus.
The Oakley Pilot gloves are a mish mash of various materials that in the end seems to make an exceedingly comfortable glove. I cut the tag that says the materials and to be honest most of you dont really care but I will list them from memory. The palm is a very thin leather with tiny vent holes. The knuckles are carbon fibre with a padded underside. The section closest to the wrist is made of neoprene. Above that is a ridged weaved fabric complete with a firmly affixed Oakley O. The area surrounding the knuckles and at the base of the fingers is a nice and strong died leather. The top of the fingers have neoprene leather and the ridged fabric on them. The sides of the finger are covered with leather at the tip and a stretchy venting fabric along most of the length. The tips of the pointer and middle finger have a thicker piece of leather on them to aid in longevity and grip.
The Oakley Pilot is a mid length glove that extends slightly past the wrist joint. It is made with warm climates and manual dexterity in mind. The entirety of the glove is covered in a way to let out moisture and heat to keep your hands fit to fight. This makes for a fairly light glove but it comes at a cost. The thin materials can give up along the seams of the fingers and I have witnessed this in friends as well as my own (pictures of this later in the review). That said these gloves do hold up fairly well to the abuse of military life. I have been using mine for a bit over a year and a half and use them for almost everything. I use them in the wood shop, as moving gloves and throughout the rigors of my Army job. I liked them so much I ordered a black pair for my motorcycle.
At the wrist of the cuff there is a textured grip of nine raised rubber nubbins which aid in putting the glove on. These work well but will eventually start to come off. The wrist part of the glove can be tightened with a Velcro strap to ensure your gloves doesn't come off or foreign object like a shell casing or bugs get in. I have fairly large wrist and hands so I don't often use this strap other than to secure my gloves to my gear when not in use. The cuff is made of a neoprene material and is holding up great so far on all of the gloves I have seen.
The tan leather in the knuckle region of the glove is stained with a nice tan die. It is a smooth piece of leather on the tan version while a slightly textured version on the black. The carbon fibre knuckle is double stitched in to ensure it doesn't get ripped off easily. The underside of the knuckle is padded with a nice foam that even when you give a decent punch to something it's not really felt. I can confirm that it is very painful to get it in the face. My hands were soaked and I was yanking at something and my hand came free and met up with my lip. It hurt a lot and my teeth made a visit to the inside of the back of my lip. This knuckle has also protected my real knuckles from all sorts of smacks and dings in an urban environment. Just above the knuckle are four rubber exhaust ports. I haven't really noticed them doing a whole lot except with a strong wind or when on my bike.
The fingers are made up of several materials and different features. The tips of the middle and pointer finger are covered in a thicker leather to stop them from wearing down. They were also given little grippy circles on them made of a rubber like material. This material will go away eventually with repeated use. You should be able to see this in my photos.
The palm of the glove is made of a thin perforated leather. I like this a lot because I can feel my weapon a lot better and it allows for awesome breathability.
All good things must come to an end and these gloves are not the exception. I have had the textured grip on the wrist lose its nubs, the grips on the fingers come off, and holes through the side fabric of the fingers. Does this bother me well yes and no. I really like these gloves and I know sacrifices need to be made in order to have the level of breathability, flexibility and weight these gloves have. I also put them through a lot of hell for example tons of rain CLP from the machine gun shoot and wear an tear as work gloves. They held up decently well for that but they are decently expensive and some of the faults happened early in its life.
I do think I got my money's worth and would recommend these gloves to others. If you have a glove you would like to recommend me to try that has similar features please go ahead.
I know the quality of the pictures is still fairly sad but it's the best I can do with a point and shoot camera and the lighting in my barracks.