When ‘King’ Kenny Roberts started the trend for dragging a knee, kneesliders were little more than bits of old rubber.
Nowadays, however, you can get leather or plastic sliders in all shapes, sizes and designs. You can even specify extrathick wet weather ones and different compounds to suit a track’s abrasiveness.
Plastic kneesliders are made in a variety of ways, but the most common is injection moulding. Some manufacturers, if their logo is set into the slider, have it made in plastic beforehand to the height of the slider and placed in a slider-shaped mould. TPU (thermoplastic polyurethane) is then injected around this to form a solid puck. By creating the logo beforehand, manufacturers ensure their logo will still show when the slider is worn (like a stick of Blackpool rock). Interestingly, racers often have the Velcro the other way to road riders with the hooks on their leathers and the fabric on the slider’s back to make changing them quicker and easier.