Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Follow up review on Castelli's Cardio Bib Tights

I mentioned these in my GamJams Review for winter tights a couple of weeks ago and said I'd post up some more once I'd worn them a few more times. I think I've now worn them enough to get a good feel for them and for the most part I'm pretty happy with their performance.

The tights are lined with a very nice and soft red fleece, my only fleece lined tights. They are moderately thick, mostly owing to the layer of fleece and the Large size fit me well. I generally wear a 31 or 32 inch waist and 32 inch inseam which will usually mean a Medium though for these the Large is the way to go.

The ankle cuff has the rubberized inner lining that keeps the legs of the tights down and your sock pulled up and a scorpion design one on the outside also in case you are layering or pull the socks over the outside. Of course there is also a sufficiently long ankle zip with reflective fabric over top for easy in and out and for visibility.

The chamois is pretty comfortable; comparable to what I have in the Pearl Izumi Attack bib shorts and Hincapie team shorts from my Racing Union team kit. I'm not sure I have the saddle time and experience to really be able to tell most chamois' apart though I'll say this one is no better and no worse then my other mid-level shorts. I find them perfectly fine.

My one and only complaint about these tights is in regards to the chest straps. I bought these because they were on Chainlove for pretty cheap and I really needed some riding tights (I was using my knickers for everything). The design it appears is to keep the straps off the nipples thereby eliminating any nipple chaffing. A good idea, except I have never had that problem with any of my bib straps. Instead these simply place unwanted pressure on my shoulders while leaning forward; nothing too serious but I'd imagine on longer rides fairly bothersome.

As for warmth these tights stack up wonderfully. I used them New Year's morning with the sub-freezing temps at the ride start and they were great. I never felt cold in them with just shorts underneath for some extra cover on the sensitive regions.

Overall I'd say these tights are great from the waist down. For the price I paid on Chainlove they are also very good all over though if you're not paying 60% off I'd avoid the style of straps offered on the Cardio Bib tights.

No comments: