Dainese Steel Pro gloves review – are they worth the price?

Dainese Steel Pro gloves
My new Dainese Steel Pro gloves

I’ve been riding motorcycles for nearly 20 years and owned many pairs of gloves, sampling different manufacturers and models along the way. I prefer full gauntlet race-style gloves since they protect more of the forearm past the wrist. A quick check reveals that some gauntlet gloves cost as little as $50 while others can exceed $500. Price plays a huge part in choosing riding gear for most riders, so it’s fair to ask if a bargain glove is as good as more expensive one. This post explains why I recently purchased the Dainese Steel Pro gloves for $360.

My experience with Dainese vs. Furygan quality

Dainese Steel Pro glove

This is my second pair of Dainese gloves, my first pair being the Pro Metal RS from 10 years ago. Unbelievably, that pair gave me over 6 years of riding and track day protection without significant degradation, so I was fully convinced that Dainese gloves were of very high quality. That said, I wasn’t so enamored with the cost of another pair of Dainese gloves, so I started looking around at other brands when it came time to replace them.

I purchased the Furygan AFS 19 race gloves after seeing them at the motorcycle show and knowing that Johann Zarco wears their gear while racing in MotoGP. They were half the cost of their Dainese counterparts while also looking very cool, so I was quite happy with my purchase. Some of the reasons for the price difference were obvious at the start, and others took a few years to reveal themselves.

First, they don’t offer the same level of protection for the pinky finger, which is extremely vulnerable in a lowside crash due to being the outward-facing digit of the hand. Note the photos below:

Dainese DCP protection
Dainese Steel Pro gloves with distortion control armor for the pinky finger

This is the Dainese DCP distortion control system on the Steel Pro gloves, a strategic set of armor plates designed to protect the pinky finger in a lowside crash.

Furygan AFS 19 glove
Furygan AFS 19 glove pinky finger and delaminating “leather”

This is the pinky finger on my Furygan AFS 19 glove, which you’ll notice has a small slider for protection but nowhere near the level of armor that the Dainese offers. You can also see from this picture and the one below it that after a few years the “leather” in certain areas has started to delaminate. I’m no textile expert, but I know real leather doesn’t delaminate, so at least parts of this gloves are made to look like real leather but are not.

Furygan AFS 19 delamination
More parts of the Furgyan AFS 19 glove “leather” delaminating

That said, the crucial parts of the Furgyan glove are real leather, and the palm is goat leather specifically for its better feel on the grips. I can honestly say that it had the best grip feel of any glove I’ve used. The delaminating sections are still structurally sound so I didn’t fear for my safety, but it looks terrible, and the stuff was flaking all over the place.

The Dainese Steel Pro gloves offers more

Some other features that stand out on the Dainese Steel Pro are the larger palm impact slider and the small bristle pad at the base of the fingers to reduce slip on the motorcycle grips. And my old Pro Metal RS gloves never delaminated anywhere after years of canyon rides and track days, so all of the leather is actually… leather.

Dainese Steel Pro gloves
Impact slider on the Dainese Steel Pro gloves
Dainese Steel Pro gloves
Grip helper pad on the Dainese Steel Pro gloves

I do prefer the feel of the Furygan AFS 19 to the Dainese Steel Pro gloves, but part of that comes down to the more plentiful armor and reinforcement on the Dainese model. Between the extra protection, no doubt borne from Dainese’s incredible experience in motorcycle racing, and my previous experience with the durability and materials quality of their gloves, I can wholeheartedly say that the Dainese Steel Pro gloves are a worthy purchase if your budget allows.

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