Oakley Assault Gloves Guest Gear Review - ITS Tactical

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Oakley Assault Gloves Guest Gear Review

By The ITS Crew

Oakley knows they really hit the mark with their assault gloves. Their appearance and overall design got them a contract with the U.S. military Special Forces community and many private contracting agencies all over the world.

However, putting the name brand aside let’s take a non-biased look at how they perform operationally and in training.

The design:

  • Carbon Fiber Knuckle Shielding
  • Full grain leather palm with micro venting
  • 4 way stretch material and joint panels in fingers
  • Sure grip fingers
  • Available in Black & Desert Tan

I purchased these gloves last December from U.S. Standard Issue for around $40.00 (They normally cost anywhere from $50.00 to $80.00) and was excited to put them to work. My first day wearing them it was a bit cold and I came to a fast decision that these gloves are made for warm weather/desert wear. I would not recommend these for long periods of wear in cold weather, due to their breathable design. The feel of the gloves is great and you keep most of your dexterity while wearing them. This makes a huge difference when determining what gloves to wear and is a definite plus with these Oakley assault gloves.

OakleyGlovesRippedMy first day on the shooting range ended with both gloves torn where the thumb meets the tang of my pistol. I was so upset by this, because I’ve worn over a dozen different kinds of tactical gloves over the course of my career and never had any rip or tear after just an hour or two of use on the range. I realized then that these gloves were more of a Cadillac tactical glove and retired them to operational use only. This is sad, because I believe you should train like you fight and not wearing the same gloves operationally as you do in training can be detrimental. (See Photo for glove damage)

Since tearing them on the range I have worn them operationally about 30 plus times and for operational use I’ve fallen in love. On two operations I was a breacher with a RAM tool and hit my knuckles both times on the door. The carbon fiber knuckles were a blessing and I sustained no injuries, scrapes, or bruises. Since seeing how well the gloves work for breaching, many of my fellow breachers have ordered pairs. I’ve found that the protection on the fingers and top of hand is second to none when it comes to tactical gloves.

I’m planning on taking the gloves to a tailor to have a strong piece of leather cloth sewn on the gloves from the thumb across to the other side of the palm. I believe this will alleviate the wear and tear issues on the meat of the hand and give the gloves more durability.

The last and major issue is that Oakley does not make a fire retardant version of these gloves. This is a major draw-back for many tactical teams here in the United States due to the use of dynamic entry and flash bangs.

All in all these gloves are stylish, comfortable to wear (in warm weather), have great over hand protection, offer above average dexterity, but are not as durable as most would like. For the price they are worth a pair, but just know you are paying more for the name and logo on the glove than they are really worth.

Editor’s Note: Please join us in welcoming Trigger Pull, a veteran law enforcement officer currently assigned to a full-time tactical team,  as a guest gear reviewer on ITS Tactical.

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  • YouDontNeedtoknow

    Oakley has a new SI assault glove that is FR.

  • BravoCharlie

    Thank you! I picked up a pair of the same glove, same color, from USSI and was incredibly let down when they went damaged after the first outting. They’ve not been taken operationally as a breacher but I can confirm that the knuckle protection, although noticeably “present” on certain terms of dexterity (namely making a fist), do help when you accidentally get a hand slammed against a brick wall. I could not agree more that you’re paying for the name and not the material/durability. Since then I’ve now moved to Outdoor Research for my choice of glove (note their FR, cold insulation, and longer glove for tucking in and keeping cold out), though I do miss the resolve a carbon fiber knuckle protector. Who knows, maybe I’ll let the Oakley’s do a round someday since you’ve given them full endorsement operationally. Thanks again for a great (and name-brand-foresaking) article.

  • Reddog

    Trigger pull, thanks for the review. A couple quick questions: The last sentence isn’t clear-are the gloves not really worth the price, or the name and logo not worth the price? Also, did you make contact with Oakley about the rip? Did they have a chance to fix/replace the gloves and decline? It seems like shooting should be a “normal” use for gloves like these. Just curious.

  • Keydet

    Oakley does make a “Tactical FR Glove” not the exact same design, but similar and with FR properties. https://secure.usstandardissue.com/Product_Detail.cfm?id=231

  • Reddog,

    They are worth the price if you can get them on U.S. Standard Issue for around $40 bucks and I would only wear them operationally. Mostly I think you pay for the name, but I do like the knuckle and finger protection they provide and still keep the dexterity. As far as the F/R kind they have now, they are much thicker, and have less protection. Thus they are not the same gloves. I’ve worn them and would only recommend them in cold weather when dexterity is not an issue. Thanks for the comments.

  • I’ve gone through 3 pairs of these in the last 3 years and have been great. The only failure I’ve seen is at the wrist strap where I’ve ripped them putting on. I have very large hands an even the XXL are tight. The Carbon Fiber knuckles are awesome and provide an armor plate basically!

  • Brockb

    I haven’t tried out the Oakley’s, but I did use the Wiley X model just like it for about two days and they started to come apart at the seams. The gloves that I ended up using the most were the Mechanix brand gloves. They held up through everything I was working with. Plus they are cheap!

  • Graham Monteith

    I almost bought a pair of these at the last gun show I went to. But I didn’t have 35 bucks on me. But I’m glad I read this.

  • Jester

    I’ve been wearing these for years, still have the originals with the seperated palm, although they’ve seen better days. Currently I have two of the current models and I love them. Best pair of gloves I’ve owned.

    One question… Has anybody cut the trgger finger off? Did you have any issues with it after?

  • Mark Scammell

    I am somewhat shocked by the lack of durability these gloves have shown on the range, I was literally going to order a pair of these today for prolonged use on the range. So now the question is “What is the best glove for range work?” I am not bothered about the warmth of the glove, any pointers would be appreciated. I found a brand called Line Of Fire. Has anyone used them?

  • Mark,
    The best I have ever used that seem to have the most longevity are the Hatch Operator “CQB” gloves. Give them a try, but make sure you get the shorties unless you like the long arm version that goes halfway up your forearm.

  • I’ve used both the Oakley and the Hatch gloves in training and operationally. I had the same issues with the Oakley gloves as the author. The Hatch gloves did better in the thumb seam but the wrist strap comes off way too easy. If Oakley could solve the stitch problem and Hatch could fix the strap problem, the two gloves would be very hard to choose between…

  • Ryan Allen

    I have been looking at these for about 6 months now. 2 coworkers have bought them and my first impression was it was hard to grip/manipulate a pistol with them on. It was not as bad with the sub gun and the rifle but I was hoping to wear them on patrol as well as for entries. The other option that has been discussed in the forum somewhat are the Mechanix brand gloves that also have knuckle and top of hand protection. I’m debating getting a pair of these to try as well.

  • Keith

    I have a pair and on occassion I may pack them along for a day of shooting. But…
    I think its the “ubber” appeal of the SI AG’s. I found them to be a nice good fit, love the knuckle and over all design, as I can pick up a dime with them but the do fall apart fairly easy. I’ve had several of the finger pads fall off. In the end…

    I prefer my NONEXs.
    ( hellstorm / BPG )

  • Agent 000

    I own a pair of Wiley X Hybrids. They have removable knuckle protectors and are made of kevlar and nomex.

    I’ve heard that many L.E. agencies do not allow their officers to wear hard knuckled gloves when dealing with the public because of the intimidation factor. It sounds very “hippyish”, but I guess if your agency doesn’t allow them, a good option would be a removable knuckle.

    My agency does allow us to wear them, but the reason why I chose the Wiley’s was because of the comfort factor without the protector. If I know I’m getting into heavier situations then I slide the protector in advance and I’m ready to rock.

  • Mark Scammell

    Trigger Pull

    Thanks for the advice, Brother.

  • Reddog245

    Sorry to be redundant, but let me revisit my second question, as it seems like a common issue now among the users. Doesn’t Oakley have some sort of materials and workmanship warranty that will fix or replace these if they fail? They have a 45 day satisfaction guarantee, which this would easily fall under. Has anyone tried to have them fixed or replaced? Or just as importantly to the company, let them know they have a problem so they can fix or improve the product? Our company learns from the customer service department, but reacts to the warranty department, because that is costing us money. If they are first rate except for the stitching, let’s help them fix the stitching issue so that we (actually you all, as I am out of the line of fire these days) have a superior product.

    • Matt B

      I warrantied out two pairs of the gloves for the same thing, the last time I was sick of paying to send them back and just bought a size bigger thinking I had them too tight. They did the same thing. I like them otherwise.

      I told Oakley, they didnt seem to be interested in what I said.

  • Madnet

    I guess I’m too old school…I prefer my Nomex flight gloves. We serve tons of search warrants and I conduct outdoor marijuana grow eradications throughout the summer with helicopter insertions and extractions. I find the old Nomex flight gloves still wear the best for me. I’ve tried the Oakley’s and they just didn’t wear that well for me for what my application is.

  • Jay

    Its so aggravating to have to buy stuff like this knowing that SF guys get it for free. Its like oh well we can just give the infantry guys Hatch gloves because they’re cheaply made. I wish we got good stuff that we wanted like good chest rigs and pouches instead of the we get. It almost makes me wish we never got issued the stuff so that we could just buy whatever we wanted.

  • Jayson Southworth

    I love the Oakley’s but the quality has always sucked. I was issued a pair to test when hadn’ t yet been released 12 years ago or more. looked cool as hell and we had never seen anything like them. every pair that I’ve been given fell apart quick!!! most of us now buy or are issued the simple mechanix brand M-pact gloves because they last..you cannot beat them…

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