All photo's are Copyright of Scott Swalling or the tagged Photographer. (Background photo Scott Swalling Photography).

About Me:

24Hr MTBike racer and general bike rider, climber and mountaineer. Good coffee drinker and cake eater (any cake, seriously, don't leave your cake laying around). Also, I like to try new things that challenge me.

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Endura Laser Jacket and MT500 shorts

Sometime ago I purchased a Endura Laser jacket from Cycleworks.  The jacket has been worn a few times and proved to be bit more breathable than expected, but not much and it is not why I bought the jacket.  I bought it to stay dry and warm.

The jacket in constructed from 50% polyester and 50% nylon, has easy to adjust wrist straps, easy to use baffle on the collar, large pocket on the back which it packs into when not in use.  Keeping in mind I chose this jacket to keep me warm and dry in woeful weather, so I will ignore the breathability.  I'll also ignore the fact that Endura have updated this jacket, although maybe at the detriment to the product.

The jacket is bright without being too loud and the reflective pipping, logo and dots on the arm apparently stand out quite well according to friends.

As I mentioned I have had the jacket for sometime and never used it in conditions that have truly tested it.  I have ridden in damp or light rain, but never an extended down pour.  However, the other week on the ride home from work this and my new MT500 shorts go their test: Drowned Rat Test, more below.

Endura Laser Jacket

Endura MT500 Spray Baggy shorts, information and picture borrowed from Endura and remains the property of Endura.

MT500 construction:

  • 4-way lightweight stretch Cordura® front
  • Waterproof 3-layer fully seam taped rear to prevent splash back
  • Integral jacquard stretch adjusters
  • Zipped thigh vents with sprung pullers
  • Rear stretch waterproof panel
  • Waterproof crotch panel in durable 3-layer Cordura®
  • Reflective thigh logos
  • Zipped front flap pockets
  • Hem adjusters
  • Clickfast™ compatible

 So these are touted as a spray short and have been tested as and are great, the leg adjustments are perfect, the leg vents well positioned, two decent front pockets if need and loads of waist adjustment.

The cordura and spandex (yes it says spandex on the label) mix is genius and works like a charm, these are super comfy to ride and do what they say on the tin.  Keep spray, puddles and light rain at bay.  So what about heavier rain? See below.

Drowned Rat Test:

Those in the south of England would know that last Wednesday was a little wet.  My normal ride home was in about 1/2 inch of constant water, even up most of the hills.  The climb up through Denbies Vinegars was a stream about an inch deep.  The rain was constant, it was one of those rides, you resign yourself to getting wet before you step out the door.

So I had set off from the office with this mind set and ploughed through the water happily, my merino X-Socks doing there job of keeping wet feet warm, the MT500's standing up to the heavy rain and wash back from the front wheel in an unexpected manner, the Laser repelling everything.

It was about the point I started up the first climb I noticed the shorts start to fail, but only on the thighs, this was expected to happen kilometers back.  The Laser was still keeping me dry and warm.

I pressed on, Exposure Max lighting the way over wet, sodden ground, slippery roots hidden by leaves around or through the puddles and mud.  My butt still felt dry and the Laser continued to work as the water steamed off the Exposure.

After an 1 1/2 hours of this in constant heavy rain and splashing through mud and puddles I arrived home.  With one very muddy bike and I was covered head to toe.  But I still felt warm and had a grin on my face.

I took off the Laser and the only dampness was my sweat, the Laser had finally been tested in the conditions I expect it was designed for and was a success.  The MT500 shorts had been pushed beyond their design specification and exceeded expectations, by cycling shorts underneath were drier than expected (still a bit wet, but they should have been soaked) and the water beaded off the water proof seat and crotch of the shorts.  I suspect that the cycling shorts had only got wet from water that had come in through the front of the shorts which are only splash/spray proof.

All round top marks to Endura on these products, an excellent purchase.  I just hope that haven't compromised the Laser jackets performance in these conditions in the Laser II.

Happy, is now a little wet, cycling.

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