Winter is just another riding season here in Oregon, thanks mainly to snow-free weather and heated riding gear. But although I love heated gear, I’m not so fond of all the wires, especially the ones I have to thread through the sleeves of my jacket to power heated gloves. Now there’s a way to go wireless with heated gloves—the Ignitors from Fly Racing.
The Ignitors start out by addressing winter weather in a traditional way, with Thinsulate insulation and a waterproof and breathable Hipora liner. There’s an adjustable wrist strap and a drawcord gauntlet adjuster to block wind and water from running down your sleeve into the glove. The fingers and palms are leather, and the fingers are pre-curved so the Ignitors feel broken in as soon as you put them on.
From here on it gets interesting. Rather than connecting the gloves to a 12-volt power source such as your bike’s battery, the Ignitors are powered by 7.4-volt lithium-ion batteries, one for each glove. The batteries plug into the gloves and fit in zippered pouches on the back of the gauntlets. Each glove has a built-in controller with pushbuttons to control three levels of heat. Three red lights on each tell you how high the glove is set. A charger that plugs into any wall socket is included.
After an initial overnight charge before first use, the batteries come up to full charge in about 2.5 hours. Fly says they’ll last about 2.5 hours on high (100 percent power), 3 hours on medium (66 percent), and 4 hours on low (33 percent) before needing a recharge (this information is printed on the zippered carrying pouch everything comes in).
The first time I wore the Ignitors on a very chilly day I started out on low power, but quickly ramped up to high. The lithium-ion batteries are no match for straight 12-volt power, but they come close. By alternating short blasts of full power with longer intervals at lower levels, and turning the gloves off at stops and during the midday when the temperature went up enough to rely on the passive insulation, I was able to conserve battery power for most of a day’s ride. A windscreen or hand guards to break the brunt of the wind would help, too.
If you’re a commuter or student riding to work or class, the Ignitors will keep your hands comfortably warm, if not hot, both ways—just recharge the batteries before you head home. For longer rides, battery conservation is important—or a spare pair of batteries kept at full charge—but the gloves’ passive insulation is good enough to make the battery heat Plan B in many cases. Ignitors won’t replace my wired gloves entirely, but unless I’m going on a long ride in very cold weather they’ll be my first choice.
Ignitors are available in sizes S-XXL, and come with a charger, two batteries and a carrying pouch. Suggested retail is $179.95
FOR MORE INFORMATION: Call (208) 376-8400 or visit flyracing.com