Endura Track Mitts – long term test

Posted: June 2, 2011 in 2011, Product Reviews
Tags: ,

In my book, six months is a long time for a pair of track mitts; they seem to dissolve before my eyes once the three month mark is hit.

As you should be able to see from the photo they have lasted pretty well, retaining shape, colour and well, just about everything. The proof of the pudding, as the saying goes, is in the eating so how do they feel when in use?

Tough to get on, they are very snug on the hand. The ones shown are XL and while my paws are quite large, they aren’t huge. A snug fit is good as far as I am concerned, I hate gloves that flap about and twist round your hand.

On the back of the glove there isn’t a dedicated ‘snot wipe’ so you have to make do with smearing nasal dribblings on the back of the glove, functional but not fantastic; having said that, a dedicated wipe can get pretty minging after a while. There is an area of reinforcement between thumb and forefinger and this has lasted really well. If you do any sort of milage on a road or CX bike, this area takes a beating, thus far, these gloves have taken it all and come up smelling of roses! The velcro….yes the velcro; this has to be the Achilles heel. I can’t put this in too fine a way…it is crap! Too small and not ‘sticky’ enough, as soon as I rest my hands on the bars it pops open. If the gloves were not so close fitting it would be a real problem. Note to Endura – bigger, stickier velcro please….like now!

So to the palm, there are three areas of padding/reinforcement. The two grey areas are a sort of rubberised concoction and to be honest, I can’t see that they help at all. The pressure point padding that sits on the heel of your hand stands proud of the glove and seems too small to actually do much. When I first got the gloves I thought they were probably going to be inadequate however, all I can say is that I rode the short loop (100k) of the Bucks Offroad Sportive a couple of weeks ago and I forgot I had any gloves on. They did their job in a quiet and unobtrusive way, caused me no grief and by the end of the ride I had no issues with pain or numbness at all. The back was soaking wet but that is another story!

The ‘fingers’ are made of a quite thin material, backed with some sort of nylon (the red section in the picture). There is a single row of stitching and this is something I want to take issue with. A single row of stitching is not enough, gloves always fail around the fingers and these are no exception. The fingers are beginning to fail particularly because of another shortcoming. Getting these darn gloves off is a pain, a real pain. They are very snug but Endura have seen fit not to include any loops for you to pull on – loops which help you get some purchase on the glove: because there are no loops, you have to pull at individual fingers in sequence, giving a series of little pulls to free the rotten things from your hands. Inevitably, this means you pull at the ends of the fingers, the area with least reinforcement. Note to Endura – loops please!

I wash these gloves after every use – well they sit in the bottom of the shower and get paddled about with muddy, soapy water. From day one they have been cardboard like in feel and this has never improved. A proper wash in the washing machine made no difference. Softer gloves would be nicer but I suppose they would not last as long. A trade off them between longevity and comfort.

I can’t remember what I paid for these but they were not what I’d call ‘budget’ gloves but there again, nor were they that expensive.

On balance then, a decent pair of mitts for use on and off road. A bit tough to get off but if you can put up with that, a thoroughly worthwhile purchase. If Endura could sort out the velcro and the loops they would be pretty near perfect.

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