Hi all. I have a pair of Firm Grip brand General Purpose gloves I bought from Home Depot. The palms are made with a washable synthetic suede material. The first day I used them, I wore a hole through the top of the palms, right where they join the fingers. If they hadn’t worn through in the palm, they would have worn through at the fingertips of the index and middle fingers. I was shoveling gravel, not at all a hard use situation. Apparently the faux suede material was pulled apart somehow. But, I have to say, the gloves were light and comfortable, and gave you plenty of dexterity.
So what gloves do you like? I have had plenty of the old-school, leather or leather/canvas gloves that don’t fit well but last pretty well. I would like something that fit better, but still had plenty of durability, especially in the palm and fingertips.
Gloves are kind of a throwaway item – but you hope that you get more than a day or two of longevity out of them. Like some other PPE we had some guys who eschewed wearing gloves citing a variety of reasons. Most would don a pair when they were working on rough masonry or demolition tasks, welding working with chemical strippers or acid. We bought in bulk – mostly general purpose leather/canvas gloves from manufacturers like Wells-Lamont, Ansell or MSA – depending on what our supplier had at the best price.
I usually just get cheep bulk packs of dipped gloves, After wasting money on $20+ gloves only to find myself replacing them a week later I just get whatever is cheep to throw away, with the only exception I do spend a little more during the cold months.
Yes - now that I’m not buying them in lots of 100 or 144 pairs for the business at something like $1.50 a pair - I’ll buy them at Harbor Freight for something like 5 pairs for $8 to $10. They are fine for a few days use, you don’t feel guilty tossing them out when they get dirty or worn - and there perfect to “donate” to the scouts for Boy Scout projects
Thank you, ladies and/or gentlemen! (You can’t be too careful nowadays.)
So far, both the cheap and the expensive gloves I’ve had (purchased from HD) have worn out in the same places, which to me means they could easily have been reinforced. The wear zones, for me, are the fingertips (on all four fingers) the crease where the fingers join the palm, and the inside of the thumb. Why not just cover those areas with rubber or something?
But I just got a new pair of full grain leather gloves (FirmGrip brand) for $10. I will proactively reinforce the wear areas with PlastiDip, which is what I have used to repair or reinforce old gloves. We’ll see how long they last.
I prefer no frills Wells Lamont leather gloves for rougher stuff (usually messing with brush/thorns) and just cheap rubber coated cloth gloves for stuff like rebar that’s been in the sun all day. For digging like you mentioned, well, I just destroy my hands the first few days and once they toughen up I’m done with gloves except for more extreme cases.
I’ve had pretty good luck with the Mechanix Wear gloves. Well, specifically the ones with their synthetic leather product marketed as “4x Material”. I can’t say I’ve been as satisfied with all of their other products. Very good dexterity and very good durability. I find AutoZone and Advance Auto Parts carry them pretty regularly.
I did a lot of looking recently and settled on Superior Glove. Many of their gloves are made in Canada, and they’re very well constructed and priced. I got a pair of heavy leather gloves that are impact absorbing, plus lighter eight ones that have very high puncture and cut resistance. Been very happy with both so far.
The only time I’ve ever spent $50 for gloves is my fleece lined leather gloves for walking the dog in -10F weather. They are the only glove I’ve found that you can take off to pick poop that will actually warm your hand back up when you put them on.
My thought is still that work gloves are disposable items - they get dirty - wear out and even grow wings sometimes flying out of the jobsite never to be seen again. So there were no $50 gloves in our PPE orders.
But winter gloves - that’s another thing entirely. I did what was called okpik training for cold weather survival - both as a student and trainer in Maine. Polypropylene glove liners, gloves and then Gore tex over-mittens - were just one strategy for keeping your hands warm. The 3 layered approach cost quite a bit more than $50 - but no frostbite at sub-zero temperatures
I usually stick with the Hardy Mechanics gloves the Harbor Freight sells, because they are comfortable, offer decent protection, and can be had for as little as $3.99 a pair, when on sale, or $5.99 usually. I often lose gloves, so I try to purchase low cost gloves, so I am not too upset when I lose them.
Not a lover of gloves but when I do, I like the kevlar / dyneema cut resistant ones with the black foamed neoprene fingers and palms. These give me a tight fitting glove for dexterity with some protection from metal edge / splinters whatever.
3M make good ones, as do several others. In my parts of the world they would be $15-20 a pair equivalent.
Interestingly my wife has really taken to then for gardening. They last far better than leather, afford protection from thorns and broken glass when weeding and have been through the washing machine many times over.
In hot countries, I’ve had people complain against wearing work gloves because of summertime heat / sweating. In real cold, the gloves I describe don’t seem to provide any warmth at all …
Like most PPE I like then to be suited more to a purpose.
I have a set for yard work - they are leather wells lamont of some sort. tan with some stretch - and suede liner on the palm. thorny bush - hard branches - dirt - whatever they don’t seem to care. They live on that side of the garage.
I have a set for car work - specifically brake/suspension work. bolts are bigger - dexterity isn’t the primary concern but dirt and chemicals and beating the crap out of my hands is the bigger concern. Here I use a set of Mechanix gloves I got from a distributor on crazy sale. decade old atleast.
Oil changes - cheap o rubber gloves either form HF or better yet off my sherrif’s car kit. (seriously - they go though them like candy for crime scene stuffs so he has to keep a box or 2 in his car - occasionlly he tosses me a half used box - why. why not - so make friends with a cop). Reason - easier clean up. I’m not so much worried about exposure to ______ and cancer causing ______ as I only change oil in maybe 6 cars total though the year - but it is easier clean up.
I work on aircraft and I treat my car similarly in that when I’m working a system with nasty chemicals (or using nasty chemicals - nitrile gloves that have some texture on them. What we used at work was some industrial brand I think they are Uline. anywho nothing is more corrosive than Skydrol 3 once used. Longer story but I swear it can degalvanize steel. Dot 3 Brake fluid isn’t very far behind. It will burn like hell into that paper cut you didn’t know you had. Or under your nails. Glove up. Cleaning parts in the solvent bin - glove up.
Other work like taking off heads on an engine - no gloves. I need to feel and I can wash my hands.
Now the oddity - yard work again. Occasionally when you can find them on clearance sale. Golf gloves work wonders in the summer for holding on to things. Yes you have to buy 2. Synthetic leather golf gloves wick sweat wonderfully. I mean it’s for holding on your your club right - well it works well for holding on to your string trimmer, or drill or whatever when it’s 99 and 98% humidity. They dry fairly quick and hold up OK. Not for heavy yard work though. Yes I use my old golf shoes when I mow with the walk behind also - better traction.