Held Carese Gore-Tex Jacket
Probably the internet's longest review of the Held Carese. From a guy that rides everyday in all conditions + dirt
I rarely write reviews as I'm super pressed for time, well, all the time, but I wanted to help out other guys researching gear. It's tough to find any info, especially on the European high end stuff. I hope you find this useful.
I'm 6' 4", 190 lbs. Everything fit perfectly on this jacket except for the sleeve length. On me, the end of the sleeves hits right on the "break", where the wrist becomes the hand.
I almost sent it back at first as I prefer the length to hit halfway down my palm, but I realized after wearing it around my office for a bit that there are two advantages to the slightly short (on me) sleeves:
1) The shortness leaves a gap (without cuffs cinched down with the included strap) that flows a lot of air on hot days with short gloves.
2) It fits in a full gauntlet glove easier and doesn't jam it up. The fabric is fairly stiff, so too much length there and it would be trying to push on your gloves all the time.
I have worn this in 38F all the way to 101F.
We had a brutal and unusually hot humid summer here in San Diego. I can honestly say you will not find a dual sport jacket that flows more air to cool you down and then can seal up completely for the cold/wet and keep you warm.
This thing has an unbelievable amount of vents, front, back, side, you name it. For the first two weeks, I kept finding new ones. Not joking.
Without the liner in, it flows about 90% of the amount of air that my mesh jacket does. I took this out on a 64 mi dual sport dirt and paved ride recently and the temp range was about 48-85F.
Started out on highway early am with all vents closed and no liner in, was perfect with just a t shirt and thin long sleeve layer . By the time I was working the bike around on dirt, I had all vents open and a nice breeze working through the jacket. Was comfortable all day.
Below 50F, I put the liner in and it warms right up, as well as blocks all the wind. I'm cold now with temps in high 30's, low 40's in the early am commute hours, so time to consider wearing a high quality thin insulating layer, maybe heated.
One thing to consider: you won't be able to zip up the neck on this with the liner in (which also has a neck) if your base insulating layer is anything over t shirt thickness and includes the neck part. I can barely just zip this up over a t shirt plus a thin insulating layer that also has a zip neck.
Have not tested it in a driving, heavy hours long storm yet. Just a normal rain. Stayed dry, no leaks anywhere for a half hour at least. One look at the Gore Tex liner and you can tell rain is not going to be an issue on this. The shell shed all the water that hit. I know it's not waterproof, so I'll have to figure out why that was the case. I will update to see how soaked the shell gets and how long to dry after I ride in some serious weather.
It fits snug and looks great. It's very adjustable to your exact sizing needs, and gives you a long, trim, lean, fitted look. This is NOT the jacket for you if you're overweight or have a huge belly. Sorry, just sayin!
This is how motorcycle gear should fit for safety and aerodynamic purposes. The snug fit means the pads are where you need them to be in a get off and there is zero flapping in wind on the bike at speed.
I just don't get the baggy gear I see all the time. Even some of the other high end brands look like a garbage bag once you have it on. I've tried on Klim and BMW dual sport gear-it fits big. Klim is huge.
On the color: I wanted a light jacket for two reasons:
1) I ride everyday, in traffic. This means certain times of the year, I get cooked in searing, blazing hot sunlight but am moving slow. I need the jacket to reflect as much light as possible to keep me cool. Plus in dirt, you are typically working more at slower speeds.
2) People see you easier, especially at night, which I ride in a lot.
Dark dual sport jackets make no sense.
I gave this a 4 out of 5, but would be 4.5 if there were half steps because at this price I think it should come with the SAS TEC back armor upgrade. The foam that's in there right now is just to show that there's a pocket for back armor-it's basically the same stuff name brand memory foam beds have. I own one. Trust me, the foam is not up to a crash and slide unless it's a foot thick, at least. It offers no protection in a get off.
Other than that, this jacket has all the bells and whistles you could want. Convertible from hot weather airflow mode to cold and wet weather warm and dry mode. Waterproof pockets on the outside, heaps of little interior and exterior and even hidden stash pockets, adjustable fit everywhere it counts, even an elastic draw cord closure on the bottom to seal it up more, the little magnets are handy, attention to detail is amazing, pants zip in jacket, etc, etc. You really have to see in person to appreciate it.
INVEST IN THIS IF:
Your part of the country rains sometimes, and those times of year are fairly predictable. Here in San Diego, we have two seasons.
It's hot, dry and sunny most of the time. Then it rains in winter for about three months and is a type of cold ocean air cold.
If your part of the country rains and gets sunny, then rains again and you can't really nail down when that is going to happen, or it happens throughout the year, you're better off getting something with the Gore Tex laminated to the shell because while putting the liner in is not that hard, it's not something you would want to do on the side of the road in the rain.
Once I put the liner in, because of the weather here, I don't have to worry about taking it in and out all the time. This type of jacket is perfect.
Also get this if you want a top of the line adventure jacket that flows a ton of air for hot weather riding. The venting is incredible. Almost as good as mesh, but with orders of magnitude more protection.
I really like this jacket and am looking forward to getting years of service from it. While one jacket is never enough to fit all the applications you can use it for if you're an everyday rider, this one comes pretty close.
If you've been thinking about it, pull the trigger. You won't be disappointed. Held delivers extreme quality, and so does Revzilla.
The customer service guy really knew his stuff and nailed the fit. I thought I needed an XL, but he talked me into a L, and it fits near perfect.
Sorry I don't have better pics; these are the only ones I have and the top box blocks a lot of the jacket. Still, you can see the fit, more or less.
November 13, 2012
Well made quality product.
Well made quality product, sleeves are a little on the long side but not too long to be a problem.
Waterproof even after 4 hours in steady rain.
Will need an extra warmth layer if it's cold.
November 5, 2012
Held quality throughout
STYLE AND QUALITY: The jacket is shipped in a nice zipper Held bag, and the overall style is top notch. This is one of the best looking jackets I've seen. This is not a lightweight jacket, with the back armor upgrade it weighs 7.5 lbs. Build quality is evident throughout, it doesn't disappoint and compared to other high-end jackets it easily justifies the price.
FIT: I'm 5'7", average build (shirt size 16x32) and had tried the jacket in medium, which fit ok with the liner removed, but with the liner and a couple layers underneath would have been too tight for my comfort. The large fits nicely, even without the liner. The side and arm adjustments provide sufficient range to dial in a good fit depending on under layers.
FEATURES: There are nine air intake vents on the jacket, and three exhaust vents on the back. The magnets, arm straps and neck flap retainer all work well to hold the vents open at speed. This jacket provides about the maximum ventilation available in a four season jacket or one that's not full mesh. The shoulder and elbow armor are first rate, the back pad should be replaced with the upgrade. There are too many pockets to count. The cell phone pocket is too small for my OtterBox encased iPhone.
RECOMMENDATION: This jacket fits the bill for year round touring all weather gear that should last for years of service.
August 30, 2012
The best adventure jacket period.
I spent a considerable amount of time checking out, I think, all adventure jackets including all videos before I pulled the trigger on this one. I wanted one jacket that could do everything! This jacket was the right choice for me. I'm 5' 9'' 185lbs, 44'' chest and 32'' waist. The XL fits perfect like a tailored suit while being able to move around. It feels light compared to other jackets with comparable protection and features. I live in Lake Tahoe NV and often ride 500mi loops thru the Black Rock desert and back. No problems with 100F sections the venting works great. I have only done cold nite rides so far but I can tell this jacket will handle the cold great. I'm looking forward to testing the jacket in the winter.. Super high quality! I am very happy with this jacket!!
KTM 990 SMT
August 20, 2012
Excellent quality and packed with features
Having owned several higher end jackets, I'd rate this one among the best. The craftsmanship is top cabin as are the materials. I purchased it recently, so can't speak to the jacket's endurance over the long run, but judging by the level of quality, I expect it to hold up well.
I'm a little leery of the abrasion resistance a mesh jacket can offer, so was looking for a jacket that's built sturdy but vents well for hot days. The outer shell on the Carese breathes very well for a 500D non-mesh material. And when you really need air flow, the venting system is highly efficient and intelligently engineered. For instance, the arm cinches are designed so they still function properly when the sleeve vents are opened (a problem area on many other jackets). The lower sleeve vent runs from the cuff to just below the elbow cinch. The upper sleeve vents runs from just above the elbow, up to the armpit and down along the torso to the waist. The flaps on the chest vents are held open by magnets so can easily be operated while riding. The storm flaps on the main zipper can be magnetically held open on both sides of the zipper, creating another large, mesh-backed venting area.
Complaints about this jacket are minimal, but I would have appreciated hand-warmer slash pockets, and the jacket does not include an insulation layer.
The overall fit of this jacket is very comfortable and true to size. I’m 6’, 185 pounds and an XL fits well.
April 11, 2011
Best Jacket I Ever Owned
First off I called and Anthony took the time to check the best sizing for my build, height and arm length. Went and actually looked at one and sent back an Email a short time latter with what my best fit would be, now that's great customer support.
I thought I would need a 2XL like a Revit however I would have had to much chest flap so the XL is perfect. I am 6-2 190 with long arms, so I was concerned with the sleeves creeping up my forearm, this is not the case I have plenty of sleeves. I'm in SoCal and only really have 2 seasons so I don't need the liner, removing the liner gave extra arm length, additionally the air flow is great on hot days, at night just layer a sweet shirt.
The picture color is deceiving it looks better in person.
The Held Carese offers fantastic protection and looks great doing its main purpose, providing safety.
When it arrived I was impressed on the packaging, the enclosed zipped garment bag and Held Hanger. The Held Carese Jacket itself is a thing of beauty when you take out the liner you see the extra nuance that make the jacket a $700 Jacket.
It offers plenty of pockets as well as a neoprene cell phone holder. My last Jacket was a BMW Trail guard, this jacket is much more superior and wears better IMO.
The overall service at revzilla is bar none, the videos are priceless. Attempting to find a retailer that has this equipment on site, virtually impossible. Thanks Revzilla for the unbiased informative reviews we all respect the work you guys do for the motorcycle community.
September 13, 2010
This XL jacket fits incredibly comfortably. I'm 6"4" 185lbs and I haven't had a jacket fit this well since my old BMW Savannah. There is a ton of venting - including LONG pit zips under each arm. One negative - no internal waterproof pocket - just the two front pouch pockets. Other than that is one incredibly well engineered and detailed jacket. Looks great off the bike as well.
Last thing - the pocket for the back protector is a proprietary Held shape - be sure to order the Held SAS Tec protector.
July 24, 2010