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Best racing suit? Logos on suit?

Discussion in 'Other Racing' started by Brian C. Stradale, Dec 11, 2003.

  1. Brian C. Stradale

    Brian C. Stradale F1 Rookie
    Lifetime Rossa

    Mar 17, 2002
    3,603
    Dallas, TX, USA
    I want to get the coolest (temperature) racing suit available.
    Any recommendations? OMP? Ferrari's Schumacher suit?

    Has anyone done the custom fitting via mail?
    Did it fit well? (I am an odd-sized person, so
    that may be my best bet.)

    For putting logos on a suit, do you need to use Nomex thread
    to avoid compromising the suit? Can you have embroidery on
    a racing suit?

    Thanks,

    Brian
     
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  3. Hubert

    Hubert F1 Rookie

    Jan 3, 2002
    2,642
    The Left Coast
    I've found teh sparco suits to be the most comfortable, and they run cooler tahn most -- from what I was told. Dunno about the stiching, but you shuold be wearing nomex underwear anyway... and, I've seen embroidery on suits.
     
  4. becker

    becker Formula Junior

    Feb 20, 2001
    310
    Arlington VA
    Full Name:
    Becker Cuéllar
    Brian

    The Sparco suit is good. Probably is best(like when choosing a helmet) if you find a place closeby to you and try it to find out your size later on you can buy it from the net(if cheaper) most places don't mind. Fortunately I'm not far from OG-Racing and they've been very friendly and let me try their stuff, once they even open a shrink wrapped item for me to see how it looks in my car and I didn't buy it(of course I asked first).

    About the patches and embroidery it's easy to have the patches made but I have not looked too deep into having them them fire-proof. I know some places they'd hand-embroid your name and stuff I'm looking into this myself.

    I'm sure somebody will have some more info

    Cheers
     
  5. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Apr 3, 2001
    11,237
    Austin, TX
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    Randy
    it isn't necessarily fire proof, but only fire resistant. having a nomex lined suit and safety equipment doesn't make you immune to fire, it just buys you time to get the hell out of the flaming car.
     
  6. speedmoore

    speedmoore Formula 3
    Professional Ferrari Technician BANNED

    Apr 15, 2003
    1,541
    Austin, Texas
    Full Name:
    D Moore
    Absolutely correct.

    Current technology has made the suits very light. My latest suit, I bought a replacement earlier this year, is a std. Tech 5 Sparco. Cost around $1,100. Looks good and fits sweet. Their inside out pro gloves are very nice too. I just replaced a set of Stand 21 gloves last weekend with the Sparco equivalent.....someone decided they needed my old gloves more than I did at Daytona last month.

    The best source is Wine Country Motorsports in Jupiter Florida..........http://www.winecountrymotorsports.com/ if you call the shop in Jupiter, ask for Craig and tell him David Moore referred you. He is very knowledgeable, used to work with me at the professional level at the track....so he's no dummy and knows the products. They have the largest combined inventory of Sparco, OMP, Stand 21, Bell, Bieffe and Arai products in the world. They can do nomex embroidery for you too and explain all the ins and outs of patches. There is a sizing chart on their site too. I happened to be in Jupiter and tried on "1". Craig looked at me, the sizing chart, and said "Here, try this on for size".

    I've done mail order custom fit suits in the past. They always come too tight. I like them a little loose, so I can wear my nomex undies as well as my coolsuit vest.

    I personally believe the STAND 21 is the very best, but Craig pushed me towards the Sparco....and I'm glad, I love it.

    Hope that helps.

    David
     
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  8. Jay GT4

    Jay GT4 F1 Rookie

    Oct 16, 2001
    4,995
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    e sempre incinta
    I've seen Nomex thread available on ebay and it isn't very expensive.
     
  9. ferraridriver

    ferraridriver F1 Rookie
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    Aug 8, 2002
    3,865
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    Dave
    If you're looking for cool, instead of cool looking, Stand 21's open weave is the coolest for a three layer suit. They are very comfortable, but look bagy due to the kinted fabric which is a Stand 21 exclusive.
    I have actually been too cold in the car! The wind goes right through the suit, sometimes it feels like you're walking around with your fly open.
    I'm on my second Stand 21 suit, and have been very happy with them.
     
  10. Brian C. Stradale

    Brian C. Stradale F1 Rookie
    Lifetime Rossa

    Mar 17, 2002
    3,603
    Dallas, TX, USA
    I am definitely looking for cool temperature... though I wouldn't want to look too dorky. How expensive are Stand21? I am having trouble figuring that out. Where's the cheapest source for Stand21?

    Thanks.
     
  11. ferraridriver

    ferraridriver F1 Rookie
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    Dave
    That's the downside to Stand 21, they are pricy. I know of no cheap source.
    Most top line suits are 3 layer, so you can get by without wearing Nomex underwear with most sanctioning bodies.
    Stand 21 has an unique open weave which allows the breeze to go right through it. Of course there has to be a breeze, :)
    If it's coolness when just walking around, then just peel off the top and tie it around your waist. If you're driving a closed car, then I don't think it's going to make much difference what you wear.
    You might look into a "Cool Vest" I hear they work, but have never tried one.
    If you should ever have the occassion to put it's protection features to use, God forbid, I'd rather have a Stand 21 than anything else, but then I drive an openwheel single seater surounded by fuel bags.
     
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  13. KennyH

    KennyH F1 Veteran
    Owner

    Aug 13, 2001
    5,225
    NYC
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    Kenny

    I could be very wrong but here we go:

    The policy of the FCA is to keep the windows open (if possible, Challenge cars can't) so you can give point-bys, and god forbid there is an accident, they can extract you from your car. I've ridden in numerous Ferraris on the track; Will H's black 512tr the most- and it gets VERY hot in the car, even with the windows open. If the Stand 21 suit really does let the wind pass through, and I had the money, I would get one without thinking twice..
     
  14. ferraridriver

    ferraridriver F1 Rookie
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    Perhaps the first question I should have asked is "Are drivng suits required?"
    I have instructed at numerous track events, FCA, and others. I have never worn my driving suit. I only wear it when required by the sanctioning body.
    But that's just me, I have no problem with others wearing a driving suit even if not required,
     
  15. KennyH

    KennyH F1 Veteran
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    Aug 13, 2001
    5,225
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    Kenny
    I believe in the higher classes they are required- Will, Matt, Steve or Adam know better then me though- I believe a helmet is required no matter what, and in the suits are recommended throughout.
     
  16. Brian C. Stradale

    Brian C. Stradale F1 Rookie
    Lifetime Rossa

    Mar 17, 2002
    3,603
    Dallas, TX, USA
    For about 2/3 of my driving, a driving suit is required.
    I always have my window open for signaling.
    I usually have my A/C on for comfort... and still its hot...
    I do most my driving in Texas heat.

    Soooo... a breezy suit would be worth a lot to me.
    But you haven't answered just how much we're talking about here... and do you order them direct from the manufacturer?

    Thanks,

    Brian
     
  17. ferraridriver

    ferraridriver F1 Rookie
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    Aug 8, 2002
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    I spent about $1300 for a custom suit 7 years ago. I ordered it through their distributor in LA, whom I believe is no longer in business.
    Your best bet is here http://fransurf.com/lareunion/stand21/accueil/acceuil-2.html
    Hope this helps.
     
  18. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
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    Apr 3, 2001
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    Austin, TX
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    Randy
    some courses, like Motorsport Ranch, where Brian will be doing a lot of driving - has a policy that you must wear a suit when driving as a member or a guest of a member. DE events at MSR do not require suits. but it all comes down to the track requirements and the requirements of who you are running with. Some vary, even in higher groups, where it is just you, a car and your balls that you wish to risk if such an event should happen.

    One other thing to note when considering a suit, gloves and shoes - these are buying you time. Also, they are protecting you from other items. Not everyone has a lexan windshield like Will H in the 512tr race car. So, if glass shatters - it will cover you. Are you okay with that if you are wearing jeans and a t-shirt? If the car catches on fire for some odd reason, how will you get out? With your bare hands? Just things to consider when contemplating the big IF. That is, if you should purchase certain safety measures.
     
  19. rexrcr

    rexrcr Formula 3

    Nov 27, 2002
    1,572
    Kalamazoo, MI
    Full Name:
    Rob Schermerhorn
    Don't worry about Nomex thread for sponsor patches. The patch is not fireproof, so cotton thread will let the patch just fall off if you're actually on fire, and does not compromise the suit.. Otherwise, you'll have a burning S/F patch securely attached to your suit.

    Embroidery is a different deal though.

    Rob
     
  20. BigTex

    BigTex Seven Time F1 World Champ
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    Dec 6, 2002
    73,190
    Houston, Texas
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    Bubba
    Went by the Simpson facility in New Bransfels Texas this weekend.
    They have the 2004 catalog available with all helments and suits, belts, and all that good stuff.

    You'd have to try real hard to spend more than $1000, per my cursory review.

    Cavallino Classic and New Orleans Pirelli event both had specs on suits required for participation.

    My .02
     
  21. atlantaman

    atlantaman Formula 3

    Mar 31, 2002
    1,726
    Roswell, Georgia
    Full Name:
    Charles
    I have 2 sparco, 1 OMP, 2 simpson, and 1 Pyrotect suits that I have used.

    Out of these--the Pyrotect(used by many f-3 and f-1 teams) is BY FAR the best one.

    Try E-Bay for a cheap deal if that is where you are heading but beware !!! some regulations require a 2 or 3 layer suit or a 1 layer with nomex underware.

    I have 3 suits That I am selling now- the Pyrotect(3 layer) fits someone 5-10 to 6-0 and less than 160lbs($250), a 1 layer nomex same size with Gulf Oil patches ($125) and 1 really nice embrodered Yahoo racing suit(nomex 1 layer) XL fits someone 6-3 6-5 and 200+ $160.

    will try to post some pics tonight
     
  22. KennyH

    KennyH F1 Veteran
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    Aug 13, 2001
    5,225
    NYC
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    Kenny

    Very interested- I'm 5'11, 160-165lbs and in the market- please email me if possible kennyherman@aol.com... Chances are you have a buyer :).
     
  23. Brian C. Stradale

    Brian C. Stradale F1 Rookie
    Lifetime Rossa

    Mar 17, 2002
    3,603
    Dallas, TX, USA
    It seems knit is better than woven, filament better than spun, and high percentage of Kevlar vs Nomex is better than more Nomex, and certainly better than Nomex III. Putting that with brand info:

    Stand21 ST2000 = multi-directional stretch Aramide (FIA 8856-2000)

    Pyrotect NASA I/II = Nomex outer / Kevlar inner + large knit bands for cooling

    OMP Technica = Nomex outer / Nomex Delta C knit inner + knit arm hole and back bellow

    Sparco Top 5 = Nomex outer / knit Nomex III inner + elastic Nomex arm holes and back panel


    Based on cooling, they seem to rank: Stand21, Pyrotect, Sparco, OMP

    Based on price, they seem to rank: Pyrotect, Sparco, OMP, Stand21,
    where the Stand21 is about double the price of the Pyrotect.

    So, it would seem the Pyrotect is the best choice, UNLESS the Stand21 is significantly cooler.


    Has anyone used both Stand21 and Pyrotect?


    Thanks,

    Brian
     
  24. Ingenere

    Ingenere F1 Veteran
    Silver Subscribed Owner

    Dec 11, 2001
    5,909
    On the Limit
    Full Name:
    Dino
    I picked up a couple of OMP suits from an unlikely source. I got a Ferrari pit crew suit from a buddy that is an engineer for the team...and I got a Zonta suit from a friend at Jordan.

    Fortunately I'm small...so Zonta's suit was a perfect fit. My pit crew suit is a little big around the middle...must be too much pasta served to the team!

    Anyway...the OMP suit is great, light and perfect for track days...

    Ciao

    Dino
     
  25. TOM B

    TOM B Formula 3

    Jul 24, 2003
    1,038
    Orange County, NY
    Full Name:
    Thomas Buckley
    I've used a number of different brands and OMP is my favorite. I was lucky to have one of their retailers nearby so I could try different sizes. Don't get the suit tight. Loose is better. Air is an excellent insulator against fire. I'd stay away from custom fit suits. They never turned out right for me. Maybe if you had a professional tailor do the measurements .

    Another reason loose is better-----to have room for Nomex underwear. Even a 3-layer suit + underwear only gives you 34 seconds of protection from direct flame impingment. Barely enough time to sigh and say "What the f*** was that ?"

    Another thing. Instead of trying to have everything color-coordinated ----- please get orange gloves. It helps the guy behind see your hand signals.

    As for fire proof thread holding on the patches------don't worry about it. When you're on fire, losing some patches will seem very insignificant. :)

    Feel free to send me a private message if I can be of more help. Good luck.


    Tom
     
  26. atlantaman

    atlantaman Formula 3

    Mar 31, 2002
    1,726
    Roswell, Georgia
    Full Name:
    Charles
    Stand21 provided me with a suit years ago for a few f-3 races and it was really nice. all depends on what you are driving and in what class.
    for track days you may only need 1 layer, open cockpit--you have plenty of wind to cool you off and ventalate. closed cockpit--better hunt down a cool suit .

    Currently I am using a Benneton F-1 Sparco suit with a JinkinsComfort detachable Cool Vest under it. Contact me if you need CoolVest info-I am a distributor as well.
     
  27. Jay GT4

    Jay GT4 F1 Rookie

    Oct 16, 2001
    4,995
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    e sempre incinta
    I've also seen quite a few ex-arrows Sparco suits comming up on ebay.
     
  28. Schatten

    Schatten F1 World Champ
    Rossa Subscribed Owner

    Apr 3, 2001
    11,237
    Austin, TX
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    Randy
    good tip, something I have not thought about.
     

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