Sugoi's bright idea.
It's dusk, overcast, and lightly drizzling. You want to get in a spin after work to clear your head and loosen up your legs. We all make this decision, and we all occasionally make the mistake of going out without proper reflective gear, putting ourselves in unnecessary danger in low-light conditions. With the advent of Sugoi's spectacularly redesigned Zap Bike Jacket, we no longer have an excuse for flouting safety.
This new jacket premiers what Sugoi is calling, alternately, Pixel or Zap Woven fabric. This fabric incorporates micro-glass beads into the actual material. Before Sugoi's Pixel, our only recourse in low-light situations has been a few strips of reflective material that, hopefully, catch headlights or street lamps at the right time. Even previous iterations of the Zap Bike Jacket were only given reflective highlights. But with Pixel, the entire jacket is reflective, from collar to cuff, shoulder to hem.
The Zap Bike Jacket also provides a high degree of less-revolutionary but equally appreciated water resistance thanks to its polyurethane component, and its exaggerated sleeves and rear hem keep your wrists dry and protect your back and saddle from the rooster tail of water that'll be pinwheeling off your rear tire in the rain. (Your riding buddies remain unprotected — but, if they don't like it, remind them that they can always take a pull or get off your wheel.) The full-length front zip is waterproof and the seams are taped to make sure there are no leaks. The rear pocket also zips shut to protect your personal effects.
The Sugoi Zap Bike Jacket - Men's is available in five sizes ranging from Small to XX-Large in the colors Black, Matador, and Super Nova.
- Item #SUG002I
- Q & A
Highly mixed opinions... regret the buy
- Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Visibility - (when tested with a flash camera) amazing. I have experienced cars slowing and giving me a lot more space than usual.
Cut - long cut in the rear and sleeves keeps you protected well in foul weather.
Protection from the elements - have had this in drenching rains and stayed mostly dry on top.
Construction - taped seams and durable (so far) sewing.
Cut - very baggy feel. The length of the garment is spot on for cycling, but the volume of the actual jacket is maybe 30% what you'd probably need. This means that you get bunching if you are carrying a pack. It also is a huge pain if you have to unzip a bit to cool off as the wind goes right in and creates a parachute effect. This then leads to reduced over-the-shoulder visibility when riding in the drops.
Temperature - I have worn this from 15F to 70F and it's definitely for the lower temps. There is no breathing to the fabric and so you will quickly clam up and get soaked with any effort. However, with less of an effort and some layering, it does keep you quite warm on those very cold days. Because it's so easy to get clammy in this jacket, you often need to unzip a bit to dry out and cool off. However, as noted above, this causes problems.
Construction - the pixel dots come off VERY EASILY. I wear a light pack and am now missing almost ALL of the pixel dots from the jacket where the pack makes contact (shoulders - front and back, back - lumber and between the back of the shoulders).
Overall: The only real pro to this jacket is the visibility factor. Without the pixel dot feature, I would have to rate this jacket 1 star based on it's function as a cycling piece. However, the ability to be seen could save your life and this might warrant spending the extra dollars for the pixel fabric. But given that the pixel dots come off the of the jacket so easily (after several rides with a backpack they were almost gone), this feature is quick to be lost. Truly disappointed.
What's the sizing on this jacket? Sugoi uses a pro, medium and relaxed fit or something similar but I cannot figure out which this is.
This is a semi (medium) fit, no need to size up in this piece.
It's a pretty loose fit if you are used to a more race cut (almost baggy).