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Thread: Black or White?

  1. #1
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    Black or White?

    Couple of decades ago I owned a few all-black cars/trucks in a row. When the last (full size Chevy PU) was stolen I replaced it with a white vehicle and immediately noticed that other drivers gave me more room and didn't pull out in front of me so closely. I was living with the aggressive drivers in Cleveland and the difference was like night and day.
    So I made a point of watching the colors of vehicles and how that affected visibility and my findings were eye-opening. Light-colored vehicles looked bigger and closer (as they could be seen clearly) and dark colors blended with the backround and were harder to identify. I lived just outside the city and on the tree-lined rural roads dark vehicles could blend in and become almost invisible while white cars looked huge.

    It seems to me that being seen and identified is one of the most important safety factors in our riding.

    The "style" now is blacked-out, in bikes and gear. Flat black is the least visible and the most popular. Wasn't like that 20 years ago, the only riders wearing all black were the outlaw wannabees.

    It just doesn't make sense to me. The black looks cool and badass but is it worth it??

    When I bought my new jacket my choice is mostly white. Wanted a white helmet but the model that fit the best was only in silver. Found some gloves with white fingers and plan to buy them. Planning to upgrade to a helmet in white.

    One of the things I've always disliked about Harleys is that they are "style before function". They're much better now but decades ago they were really horrible bikes (remember choppers?) but looked cool.
    Is that what this is about? Looking cool and just not worrying about visibility?

    And I admit that I'm an old fart who doesn't care what others think about me. Black or White?-bilt_techno_mesh_jacket_white_black_750x750-jpgBlack or White?-bell_mx9_adventure_mips_helmet_rollover-jpg

  2. #2
    Senior Member Black or White? dduelin's Avatar
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    My mesh gear is silver/black but I sew fluorescent cloth hi-viz green panels on the upper chest and back. The hi-viz contrasts greatly against the silver/black. My one-piece suit is completely hi-viz. My helmets are white. I believe it helps me stand out. Not foolproof, the blind wouldn't see a fire truck anyway.
    Dave

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  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by dduelin View Post
    My mesh gear is silver/black but I sew fluorescent cloth hi-viz green panels on the upper chest and back. The hi-viz contrasts greatly against the silver/black. My one-piece suit is completely hi-viz. My helmets are white. I believe it helps me stand out. Not foolproof, the blind wouldn't see a fire truck anyway.
    I've seen some bikers here wearing the Hi-Viz vests and might get one myself; saw they have them at Walmart for a few bucks. Just for here in the city where there are a million lights and side streets.

  4. #4
    Senior Member Black or White?
    Black or White?
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    I wear hi-viz religiously and am convinced it has helped me avoid some bad situations. However I have read some study somewhere along the way that stated a white helmet was still more effective at conspicuity than any other color.


    Iím supposed to respect my elders, but itís getting harder and harder for me to find one now ..

  5. #5
    Super Moderator Black or White? 670cc's Avatar
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    White is better than black, but they both blend in with the sea of white, grey, and black vehicles out on the road today. Get any light color and you will stand out. I personally like hi viz yellow, but I do have both a hi viz and a white helmet.

    I too, observed that white helmets stood out more than grey or black. Why anyone wears black gear, I’ll never understand. I’m not saying it’s wrong, just that I don’t get it.
    Last edited by 670cc; 2nd August 2019 at 16:50.
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  6. #6
    Senior Member Black or White?
    Black or White?
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    Why anyone wears black gear, I’ll never understand. I’m not saying it’s wrong, just that I don’t get it. Must be me; I’m weird.[/QUOTE]

    Ditto. As a motorcyclist I’m “programmed” to spot other bikes just as a matter of course and curiosity. But even with that predisposition I’m still caught off guard at times by the bike and rider all in dark clothing and gear. Just astounds me why anyone would do that and put themselves at such risk.


    Iím supposed to respect my elders, but itís getting harder and harder for me to find one now ..

  7. #7
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    I wear gray gear which has a 1" wide 3M reflective chartreuse stripe from one wrist, across my back, and ending at the other wrist. And again along the outside of both pant legs. Been wearing that since my mid-30's so I can't say I was an old fart when I started that. But most people I rode with were at least 20 years older so maybe an old fart at heart.

    Why motorcyclists won't wear high-visibility gear - RevZilla

    Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk

  8. #8
    Super Moderator Black or White? 670cc's Avatar
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    What I donít understand is why the hi-viz focus is just on riding gear. Why arenít the bikes painted in highly visible colors? Check out the Grom pictured below. If the Goldwing, CRF250L or the NC came in that hi-viz yellow color, Iíd have to go buy Ďem!

    Black or White?-b6cc9939-b36d-4813-9e1e-47d202a7d53d-jpg
    Black or White?-35f53982-0d5d-46f2-b579-80ed57710f3d-jpg
    Last edited by 670cc; 2nd August 2019 at 17:14.
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  9. #9
    Super Moderator Black or White? 670cc's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jspivy View Post
    I wear gray gear which has a 1" wide 3M reflective chartreuse stripe from one wrist, across my back, and ending at the other wrist. And again along the outside of both pant legs. Been wearing that since my mid-30's so I can't say I was an old fart when I started that. But most people I rode with were at least 20 years older so maybe an old fart at heart.

    Why motorcyclists won't wear high-visibility gear - RevZilla

    Sent from my Pixel 3 using Tapatalk
    I have to chuckle about that couple in the article wearing gear with hi viz highlights, while their bike and everything else is black. Why didn’t they do like me and just buy a yellow Goldwing? A yellow Goldwing has so much bright plastic it won’t matter much what color your gear is.
    Last edited by 670cc; 2nd August 2019 at 17:21.
    Greg
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  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by 670cc View Post
    I have to chuckle about that couple in the article wearing gear with hi viz highlights, while their bike and everything else is black. Why didnít they do like me and just buy a yellow Goldwing? A yellow Goldwing has so much bright plastic it wonít matter much what color your gear is.
    In 2005 I bought the first new Cobalt SS Supercharged that showed up at the local dealer. Great car, loved the color!Black or White?-62669542-jpg

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