Finding a full finger cycling glove is easy. Finding a good full finger cycling glove can be a challenge. The Planet Bike Orion Gel Full Finger Cycling Glove is a surprisingly good glove for cool (not cold) weather cycling. I say “surprisingly good” because it exceeded my expectations.
I have read a lot of reviews for different cycling gloves and have come to the conclusion that most of the negative comments about gloves are made by people who are trying to use the gloves for conditions they were never designed to handle. The Planet Bike Orion Gel Glove is intended to be the first full finger glove you use in the fall and the last one you use in the spring before your regular summer gloves come out. These gloves are great for temperatures between 45 and 55 degrees. However, this temperature range will vary depending on the type of cycling you do. A commuter or mountain biker might be able to wear these gloves in slightly cooler temperatures because they are generally moving slower and the wind will not impact them as much as a roadie riding along at 25 or 30 MPH.
The palm of this glove is made of terry and the body is made of a four-way stretch woven spandex—these two pieces are held together with a thin strip of woven Lycra. This glove also has a large Velcro closure, so you can either keep the glove tight or loosen it up a bit as the temperature rises. The photograph of this glove on the Planet Bike Website (and most online retailers) fails to show the silicon fingertip prints (strips) on the index and middle fingers. These silicon strips really increase your grip as you try to grab a carbohydrate gel package out of your back pocket.
There is a ventilated mesh on the back of the glove to increase ventilation. This mesh is a mixed blessing—you will love it if you are a commuter but on a windy 45 degree day it provides more ventilation than you will probably want. The truth is that no glove can be perfect in all situations.
The gel padding on the palm of this glove does an excellent job at reducing vibration. When I first tried this glove on I had serious doubts about the gel padding because it is thinner than I usually like on my gloves. However, I used these gloves on several 50 to 60 mile rides and they were actually very comfortable. I’ve had some gloves that left my hands numb after only 20 miles.
Planet Bike Orion Gel Full Finger Cycling Gloves retail for $26 and they come with a limited lifetime warranty against defects in material and workmanship. If you ride in temperatures below 45 degrees you need to check out the Planet Bike Borealis Winter Full-finger Cycling Gloves (review forthcoming).