Leatt: Protect the digits with Leatt DBX 4.0 gloves:
Shoulder seasons are tough for biking. Temperatures can vary wildly. It could rain or snow. Roads and trails can be wet. Your cycling kit has to be versatile and flexible. So it’s always nice when a single piece of gear can cover a wide range of situations. The Leatt DBX 4.0 Windblock gloves are one of those pieces.
Leatt has only been producing cycling products since 2010. The company started with a single moto-x neck brace, branching into mountain biking by adapting that neck brace for downhillers. Since 2010, their cycling line has expanded to helmets, body armor, and gloves and they started making winter sports body armor and knee braces for skiers, boarders, and moto-x riders.
The DBX 4.0 Windblock Gloves were a nice introduction to the company. Leatt makes the back of the gloves out of a wind-blocking material (thus, the name) and the palm out of NanoGrip. The DBX 4.0s also have heavy-duty Armourgel impact pads on all knuckles and the 3rd and 4th fingers.
We’ve had these gloves out on a variety of circumstances from chilly, windy road rides to wet, sloppy fat biking to early spring trail rides. They’ve been our go-to gloves on winter commute rides. They have a moto look to them – the graphics are a bit loud, even on our black and grey versions. Other colorways are even louder.
Do they block wind? Yes. The main fabric kept our hands warm on chilly days without overheating them. There’s nothing particularly special about the windblocking fabric other than that it works.
We found the NanoGrip to live up to its hype – its touted as ultra-thin, stretchy and flexible. Over the last few months, we’ve handed the gloves to a few different riders and each commented on how good the palm material felt. Be aware, however, that there is absolutely no padding. Not a big deal on a mountain bike with cushioned grips, but we had some hand numbness when riding the gloves on chilly road rides.
One of our testers was very displeased with the touchscreen performance of the gloves. Another had some success. The tester who couldn’t get the gloves to work with his phone has a screen cover while the tester who didn’t have trouble has a bare screen. The screen cover may have been the difference. We don’t think it makes or breaks the performance of the gloves, but don’t expect consistent touchscreen compatibility.
Thank goodness we haven’t had to officially test the Armourgel yet. But, in goofing around and punching rocks and trees, we can tell you that it does provide protection. The DBX 4.0s are listed as certified as Personal Protective Equipment 89/686/EEC and CE impact rated Knuckle prEN 13594:2014. Mumbo jumbo? Not really – prEN13594 is the European standard governing protective gloves for professional motorcycle riders. So, they should cover you on your bike.
The gloves didn’t fit any of our testers perfectly, but that’s not unusual for cycling gloves. You have to find the brand that fits your hand shape. Two testers with average finger length/palm width found that everything fit except for the thumbs – they were too long. Our other tester with wide palms and shorter fingers thought all of the fingers were a bit long, but tolerable, and the palms fit just fine. Everyone tested large gloves. Our tester with shorter fingers probably could have gone with a medium, given the stretchiness of the fabrics.
Overall, we’re pleased with the performance of the Leatt DBX 4.0 Windblocker gloves. We can recommend them.