Review by Marlon Slack.
There’s two sides to Icon. Half their of their apparel draws from a colour palette best described as ‘kids sneakers’ while their motocross jerseys wouldn’t look out of place on a 90’s football team. I guess this is what most people like – but it’s not for me. The other half of their products belong to the 1000 line – blacked out and earthy tones on military-inspired cuts, held together with buckles and press studs you could beat a man to death with. The Icon 1000 line is equal parts On Any Sunday and Mad Max. So when I found out the Basehawk jacket I was being sent to review sat firmly within their 1000 collection I was ecstatic.
Of all the items of motorcycle apparel available, I find it hardest to get excited about boots. Jackets? Easy. Gloves? There’s a dozen pairs I want at the moment. There’s even a good variety of Kevlar jeans that don’t look like they’re designed for my Gran. But protective motorcycle boots usually look like a cyborg’s leg sprouting tumours – with lurid bits of plastic and obnoxious logos hanging off at all angles. And for a long time boots like these were the only real option if you wanted to protect your feet and ankles. But then there’s the Icon Elsinore 1000. Modelled after motocross boots of the 1970’s, the Elsinore 1000 tries to combine traditional styling with modern safety features. I think they look fantastic, but if you think that they look like ridiculous steampunk accessories there’s no helping you – you’re probably not the target market for the Elsinore’s anyway. But if you like the look of them, you should seriously consider buying a pair. Here’s why.
By guest writer Ian Lee.
So you decide you are going to build a custom bike. From this starting point you have so many directions you can head in for the style of your build. Should your bike run motocross bars or clip-ons? Is it a good idea to lengthen your swingarm? Is it really a problem if you want to run both Firestones and pipewrap? All good questions if you are a run of the mill customiser. However, if you are in the same state of mind as the builders at Icon, then your ideas will stretch far beyond conventional means, to the realm of the post-apocalyptic.
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This is the review I have been putting off writing. Not that I didn’t want to write it, I just didn’t want Andrew (from Pipeburn) to read it. You see, one morning a few months ago I received a knock on my door and there’s a FedEx dude holding two large boxes. I quickly signed for them and opened up the first one and there in all its glory was a brand spanking new leather jacket from ICON. It’s probably a good time to mention that ICON are a sponsor of this site but we pride ourselves in giving unbiased reviews – just check out the last Icon product review). Anyway, after pulling out the jacket I instantly knew there was a serious problem – there was only one of them. The problem being there are two of us that run Pipeburn so when it comes to products like new leather jackets it can cause problems. I had two options. Don’t tell Andrew that I was sent the jacket and always wear my old jacket when we go for rides together. Or the other option was just to tell Andrew and see what his reaction was. I chose the later. So I text Andrew and he replies faster than Marion Jones on speed. “I want it!” he says. “you have a cool jacket and mine is shit”. He had a point, his jacket is ugly as sin. But this was going to be a hard one to hand over. So I try the jacket on and it fits perfectly. Then my wife walks in right on que. “wow! nice jacket” she says. The last time she said that was on our wedding day and I was wearing a very expensive suit. Seriously. This was a keeper, plus it was pretty much second hand now. Couldn’t give Andrew a second hand jacket could I?
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“How big is your head?” Scott asked me. Smart arse. I waited for the punch line. “No, seriously. What size helmet do you take?” Oh, right. “I’ve got an Icon helmet,” he said, “they’ve given it to us to review. It’s a large. You want to do it?” I was stoked. We’ve done reviews before on Pipeburn, but mostly of our own gear – which is a double-edged sword as you get plenty of time to really know a piece of kit, but then you wouldn’t have purchased it if you didn’t think it was the best option.
But this was different; a brand new helmet that I had no intention of purchasing was now in my hot little hands awaiting a full and detailed dissection. And that’s exactly what this is. I’ve got five month’s worth of detailed notes and a laptop with a fully charged battery – let’s do this.
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Love em or hate em, Icon know how to have fun – and isn’t that what riding a motorbike is all about? This video is fresh out of the box and features some of the Icon team riders tearing it up in a container yard on some of the Icon bikes. Enough said.
We would like to give a big shout out to Icon, especially their creative genius Kurt Walter who decided to support Pipeburn this year. Check the Icon blog to see what motorcycle goodness Kurt has posted today.
When it comes to creativity, Icon are the leaders of the pack. Not only in their helmet and bike designs, but also in their press releases and photography. This is how Icon’s talented Design Director Kurt Walter describes their latest project – the ‘dirty cafe racer‘:
She wanted me dead, that was clear. I could come up with no other reasoning for why she conducted herself in such a hostile manner. With her carbon cans barking like a tortured lap dog the Snakecharmer was hellbound on delivering pain. And not the kind of pain that you just walk off. No, she wanted to deliver the kind of pain that burns for weeks. Where every shower is a constant reminder of your failures. The kind of pain that forces you to sleep on your stomach eschewing blanket or even sheet. The type of pain that your wife not only doesn’t care about, but actively mocks. And who could blame her?
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It’s safe to say this drop seat rigid isn’t going to win any beauty contests. But then again it wasn’t built for that purpose. The Icon Death or Glory was built for one thing in mind – speed. One of the first thing that caught my eye was the plastic toy mirror, so I asked Icon’s design director Kurt Walter whether it was there to be ironic, he replied “I built a 2100cc powered rigid death machine virtually incapable of turning or stopping yet equipped with Ohlins forks on billet Attack triples. Garnishing it with a mirror stolen from my daughter’s Barbie bike just seemed appropriate. So yeah, I suppose the mirror is – ironic, sarcastic, humorous, ridiculous, stupid… all of the above”.
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Icon are renowned for their over the top helmets, jackets and bikes. Their latest creation is no different. This little green 76′ Yamaha TT500 has been done in true Icon style. Although, unlike the rest of their gear this has a really cool retro look. It makes me feel all prepubescent and stoned just looking at it. The incredible thing about this bike is the diverse range of parts. It has the front end from a 1990 Suzuki Katana 600, Handlebars from a 2002 Honda Reflex (the one thing I would change) and even a rear brake from a Hayabusa. For more pics and the full spec list of this impressive build visit the one and only Hell For Leather Magazine.
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