The Fox Ranger glove is a no-nonsense minimalist full-fingered glove from one of the most iconic brands in the mountain biking industry. I decided to give these gloves a try after hearing several riders sing the praises of riding with a minimally padded glove.
The Fox Ranger glove features a polyester palm and fingers that is minimally padded. The little padding that is added to the palms is provided by a simple double layer of the same material sewn on in strategic locations on the palm.
The fingers feature mesh side panels to improve the breathability of the glove. The back continues a slightly rougher polyester fabric that seems a bit tougher than the palms. The gloves do not provide any kind of armor and are intended for riders looking for some basic protection and enhanced grip. The back of these gloves also feature great graphics and I find them quite good-looking.
The latest model of the fox ranger also features conductive thread on the thumb and index finger for touch screen compatibility. While this may not sound like a big deal, I have found gloves that feature touch screen compatibility to be incredibly useful for things like starting and stopping activity tracking on my touch screen GPS watch and snapping a quick photo on my phone.
The closure on the gloves is provided by a velcro strap that is easy to handle while putting them on. Some riders prefer an elastic closure. However, I don’t mind the velcro closure at all and I find that it allows me to customize the fit.
Glove fit is a very personal determination. With that in mind, in use I found the fit of these gloves to be just fine. The materials used are both comfortable and light enough to provide ventilation and minimize sweaty hands.
The part of these gloves that has been hard to adjust for myself is the minimalism of the palms. I rode the first few months of my season with a glove that had a bit more padding in the palms.
When I switched to the Fox Rangers I immediately appreciated the additional feel that the minimum padding provided. The glove felt one step removed from riding bare handed. However, after riding for about an hour I started to notice soreness in my hands similar to what I experienced when I started mountain biking and “death gripped” the bars.
I found that the calluses on my hands started to developing into almost a blister as I switched cold turkey to these gloves. I felt as though these gloves gave me not quite the right amount padding. Perhaps if I gradually switched to them, or started the season with this lighter padded glove I would see more success. The soreness mainly went away as I continued use.
If however you are coming from riding with bare hands, these gloves would be perfect for you. They have a ton of feel and look great too!
I’ve ridden with these gloves for a few months. Crashed them a few times. The Fox Rangers have taken the abuse in stride and show no signs of pulled seams for frayed fabric. The velcro closer also has worked well and I haven’t had any problems with the velcro losing it’s “stick.”
If you are in the market for an affordable, minimalist mountain bike glove I would add the Fox Ranger to your short list. At around $15-$25 they have proven to be both comfortable and durable. The classic graphics and good looks are the icing on the cake. They are a great value.
- Quality Construction
- Good Feel
- Touchscreen Compatibility
- Not enough padding for some
- Some may not prefer the velcro closure