FirstGear Flame Jacket

First Gear Fire Jacket: $400

Since the first bolt of lightning struck a tree somewhere in a Jurassic forest, fire has had the power to captivate, fascinate and most importantly turn dead cow flesh into steak. So quite naturally, when the fine proprietors at First Gear decided to amplify the mystique of the biker jacket, and take it up a notch, BAM! (sorry Emerill) They turned to a tribal flame motif to provide that "Je ne sais quoi". Which I think is French for, "We surrender".

The Fire Jacket is made of top grain, drum-dyed black leather, with either a red or silver flame motif underlaid. Climate control is managed by a pair of full-length vents along the seams of the back panel and one down the left breast. Vented cuffs also allow for airflow to the arms via dual zippers crowned with leather tassles for easy access even with gloves on. Speaking of access, you'll find your Marlboro soft pack in either the interior or exterior chest pockets, or the two traditional zippered handwarmer pockets. Either that or you left 'em on the bar.

The zip-in, vest-style liner offers an attached velcro-secured neck warmer, and features fanciful retro motorcycle images and the company's slogan, "Great rides always start in first gear". Which is true in almost all cases, except when your "great ride" is initiated by performing a rolling burnout in second gear to maximize it's duration before peeling out . . . but I digress.

I don't believe in conclusions -- it's this simple: If you really want a jacket with flames on it, buy this one, I like it and wear it all the time.

If you don't like, don't buy it. Available in Men's and Women's sizes, First Gear leather garments are warranteed to be free from defects in materials and workmanship for a whopping ten years from date of purchase by the original buyer. By then you'll probably be a lot fatter and need a new jacket anyway, so don't complain.

First Gear products are not available online. So go check one out, try it on, feel the heat, and get your flame on! To find a local First Gear retail outlet go to

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