River Road Laughlin Jacket
This is my first dedicated jacket after 35 years of denim jackets for riding. My OCD nature had me looking at jackets and reading reviews for about 2 months. I am very happy with this purchase. I wanted a jacket that did not shout "motorcycle". This one fits the bill. The liner certainly ups the comfort quotient in cooler temps - down to about 45 or 50 degrees for me. I originally ordered at small, per the sizing chart. It did not fit well. The Medium is perfect with room for an extra layer if needed and room to move around and breathe, liner in or out. The ventilation is modest at best, but that is remedied by allowing more flow through the main zipper in front and opening up the sleeve zippers with the snaps closed up. The jacket initially has an odd, petroleum fragrance about it: this went away after the first ride, and subsequently smelled like suede, which is what the brown one looks and feels like. The elbow and shoulder pads are perfect placed for me and not obtrusive. The back pad is nominal, but better than nothing. About the only aspect of this jacket that is not perfect for its intended purpose, are the zippers. The zippers are not very robust and the main front zipper - the one you will use the most - is rather fiddley in its engagement. The ends don't slide together easily, especially if gloves are on. The liner has a same low-rent zipper. I suspect that it will fail if used frequently. The buttons for the liner sleeves and back are not robust and will likely need re-sewing with use. When and if the zippers fail, I will have a tailor put in some high quality zippers. The price allows you to this easily as the other jackets I looked at were much more expensive, although they did have higher quality zippers. The rest of the jacket has a nice quality about it; the seams feel strong and the metal snaps are stamped with the River Road logo. The company River Road seems to take pride in the product as it came with a simple plastic bag and a branded hanger. I am very stoked about this jacket and would buy another one should this one get stolen. By way of background, I ride mostly on weekends, occasionally to and from work, and for 1-3 hour rides for fun on a 1973 Honda Scrambler without any windscreen.
January 1, 2015
Great look and function, Good range of airflow and light weight.
November 20, 2014
Big Bang for the Buck
This is a stylish jacket that packs a lot of features for the money. You get a liner with pockets, armor in the back and arms, and pockets in the jacket also if you decide to remove the liner. Has zippered vents for air flow also. I am 6 foot 195 and I purchased a large. It fits me pretty tight, especially with the liner in so I cannot wear say a thick sweater or shirt under it, but I'm getting used to it. Perhaps it will break in over time. The jacket is well made and rugged. I am very impressed so far with River Road, they seem to make very good products for the rider. Overall it's a good jacket, just remember it may fit a bit small and you might need to go one size up if you like a little wiggle room.
November 17, 2014
Perfect for the changing weather
Liner and Pads are easily removable
Not to bulky
Can put on a sweatshirt or hoodie underneath for when it gets colder and won't feel constricted
Not terribly waterproof (maybe have an hour in light rain before you start feeling wet)
October 27, 2014
Good features and a ride in style.
As other people have said, probably the only downside is the stubborn zipper. But I expect it to wear in.
It's great in style and probably runs on the bigger side. So keep that in mind while buying.
Watch out when removing the liner as I already tore one of the buttons off.
October 13, 2014
Great all around jacket
If your looking for a multi season jacket with built-in protection that doesn't scream "motorcycle" this is it. After wearing it for a month in everything from high 80s to mid 60s temps, I can say it's very comfortable. I've only ridden with the removable liner removed, so I expect it will be quite warm in the much cooler temps of the fall. The venting allows decent air flow in the warmer months, but I would not push it in the hotter months (90+). When buttoned up it feels pretty windproof and keeps warmth in even without the liner. Styling is great for the subtle look. Only drawback is the flimsy zippers.
October 4, 2014
Wait for Laughlin 2.0
Let's take this in context... This jacket is at the low end of jacket price choices; still, it is supposed to be a motorcycle jacket. Unfortunately the fabric's weight, comparatively loose weave, and external seam construction, all suggests the Laughlin's abrasion resistance is going to be lower than it should be even at this price.
Further, as the other reviews noted, the main zipper's quality is poor to the point of being unusable. The zipper's teeth simply refuse to operate smoothly (especially at the neck bend) even when treated with graphite.
So why didn't I send it back? The collar. I wanted a jacket that was cheap, could do cold, was a socially-stealthy Low-Viz; and found that no one else offers a collar like the Laughlin's which zips-up high to protect your neck. So for $20 I had a tailor replace the main zipper; and for the cost of a large bar of fabric wax ($15) I treated the coat to increase the jacket's wind resistance.
The elbow and shoulder armor pockets are large, and I found that Icon's regular (not their D3o) replacement armor inserts fit right in and don't move around. Comparing dimensions with available back armor replacements I think Forcefield's # 001 back insert would have been the closest fit in shape and size to the back armor pocket, but I decided to just trim up a Viper ST D3o pad that I already had.
In regards to fit, I am 5'11 & 190 lbs and found a size Large fits me perfectly, but only without the removable liner (which proved to be bulkier than my other winter layers that do fit under this jacket).
Why am I not recommending it? Although this is a great looking, low-key jacket with some great features, it needs to be constructed with a moto worthy, denier rated fabric. Do that River Road and I may pony-up for another one.
September 25, 2014
A good alternative to black
I wanted a brown jacket to wear on top of my thermals but under my leather vest. The River Road Laughlin suited my needs style wise. With the armour removed I can happily wear this as a casual jacket off the bike.
I'm a big guy (6'7)and I ride with ape hangers so I bought the biggest size. The issue with fit for me is that it's a little to loose in the torso region and way to tight and short in the arms. Given I wear this jacket with longer gloves it isn't a major issue however it probably means it won't come out in summer.
Quality is good however the zippers could be a little better. But it is what it is - a cool looking cheap jacket.
August 25, 2014