Let me just say, I don't even know where to start... I've been hesitant about posting this review as I know it will result in backlash. But I try to make reviews as accurate as I feel is possible in my own eyes. If you are a fan of Fairtex, I suggest you stop reading you now as this review will more than likely piss you off.
So I reviewed the BGV1s, I felt initially they were a better glove but in the end they came in at a B-. Still a good glove but I just felt Fairtex gets a lot of passes. It had some issues that I felt couldn't be overlooked from being stiff and unforgiving, to the lack of a grip bar. I felt the quality was great though, somewhere along the line though the Sherdog myth is the quality of materials were on par with Reyes, sadly they are not even in throwing distance.
So what does this all mean? It means I wanted a better Fairtex glove and people said I would enjoy Fairtex had I given another model a shot, so here I am, rolling into the BGV5 review.
The Materials: I felt these were better and even side by side with my BGV1s the 5s looked better, and felt better. Again though Fairtex's leather is pretty far from Reyes quality leather, or Winning, Beaulieu, or some of the "other" Mexican brands out there. I mean its great leather don't get me wrong but it is no where on par with those companies. Id say if you were comparing vs the generic Everlast or Title yes Fairtex is quite better.
The padding: It is god awful... Around here another myth is Reyes is a puncher's glove and you can break your hands and mess up your hands. I've used them for YEARS and YEARS with NO issue. BOTH the BGV1 and 5 aggravated my hands and wrist (we will get into that later) that I had to strictly use my Winnings and my Ring to Cage customs for over a week while my hands slowly healed. I was not about to take time off. These are supposed
to be sparring gloves, so my sole intent was to use them for sparring. So I logged in three rounds by the end of the 2nd my knuckles were throbbing, BOTH of my wrists were throbbing. These gloves have absolutely no shock absorbing value. While they didn't damage my sparring partner the shock absorbing value of these gloves were about as good as 20 dollar Everlasts. I gave the gloves the benefit of the doubt, halted the timer and rewrapped. I landed a straight right on my sparring partner and it felt if lightning struck my hand and went almost to the elbow. The padding in these gloves are complete shit and overhyped.
Ive been threw a PLETHRA of brands, title S2 & gels, ringside, Ring to cage, Beaulieu, Winning, Boxeo, Reyes, Classics, Zepol, Windy, Triumph United, Hayabusa, and theres more.
And this is coming from the guy that USES Reyes on the bag! The padding the BGV5 IS garbage. I shouldn't NEED to use Gel Knuckle guards so gloves are usable!
And I know that someone will come up and say but Strat, you never tried Thai gloves extensively. I tried Windy, and in almost every regard OTHER than the leather they are superior (Windy Proline)! Hayabusa (MMA) isn't a boxer's glove either and my rating of those were ranked one of the best!
Skip Fairtex, its overhyped especially for the price you pay. Even against Ring to Cage pound for pound the Deluxe MiMs are LEAGUES above the padding of Fairtex both BGV1 and BGV5, I wont even try the BGV9 now because of the padding issues with Fairtex.
The Feel: I wont cover the way the padding feels as I've discussed that the in paragraph above. The feel without punching is great, you can make a solid fist, the thumb is much more comfortable than in the BGV1. I was not a fan of the wrist half closure, I prefer the full 360 for more support. The gloves were easy to manipulate I felt.
The Leather: Again, No where near Reyes, though it is good quality, I feel this needs to be stressed because the word on the street is, it is on Reyes level. I assure you it is NOT.
The look: The look is sleek, its mostly smooth, the leather on the backhand wrinkles up rather easily it is not tight like the gloves I am used to. The thumb look is like something Ive never seen before. Its massive and its huge, but it doesn't bother me, its just different. The black is a super nice glossy black. If the review was based on looks alone, this glove would rank high. But this review encompasses more than just looks.
The Liner: I only put about 5 rounds in, 3 rounds of sparring, 2 rounds of light bag work. The liner seemed to work out pretty good, but someone would have to test this for more than 5 rounds.
The Wrist: It was okay at best, I felt the BGV1s were far superior in this regard. The 5s left me with the feeling of "Meh, its alright"
The Weight: Like before the Fairtex's run heavy at 17.1 oz per glove. But its always better being heavier than lighter especially when it comes to sparring. That's just my opinion though.
Overall: I don't know how you can justify buying and KEEPING these gloves unless you are a die hard Fairtex fan. A lot of areas to me are subpar and the padding is not suitable for sparring and forget bag work. They sport a 70 dollar price tag from Muay Thai fighting but shipping costs will bring the glove into the 90-99 dollar range. I think for that price range these gloves fail. There are so many better options out there. Again, if you like Fairtex, then these may be the gloves for you. Otherwise, move along and get something else. If you HAVE to get Fairtex I would suggest getting the BGV1s over these. The padding seriously brings the glove down to the barely usable category.
Other Thoughts: Now I know what you guys mean when you say a glove does not absorb shock. It literally felt like having an aluminum bat and taking a swing at a tree or something stupid. I could feel every shot that I landed both in my knuckles and my wrist, and this was in SPARRING! Now when someone says OMFG you use Reyes on a bag? I'm going to say Dude if you think that's nuts, I used Fairtex PERIOD!
Score 69% / D+
For those that do not like to read (©ClampXVII)
+Grip bar and thumb lock standard in this model
+Beautiful Black Glossy colored leather
+Padding protects sparring partner
+Liner worked pretty well for the short amount of time I used these gloves
+/- Price (only if you can skip the shipping)
-No shock absorbing ability on the padding
-Half wrist closure is not very supportive