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Jon

Jon

Boston

Jon's Passions

Snowboarding
Biking
Running
Hiking & Camping

Jon's Bio

I'm an outdoor enthusiast with a software engineering problem. I love anything that let's me go fast or push my limits including biking, running, snowboarding, and soccer.

Jon

Jonwrote a review of on June 8, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: 32

If you're between sizes, go down. I wear a 32/33 depending on brand, and the 32 is excellent. I have 24.5" quads, and these are trim, but not tight. Length-wise they hit just above my knee.

These are extremely comfortable with lots of stretch. I also have two pairs of Mission Ridge pants, so I'm clearly a big fan of this fabric.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on June 2, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I use this after biking to work on warm/hot days. The small works well for me, but I keep my hair short (#2 buzzer) so you may need to size up. It dries quickly, doesn't stink after a couple uses, and packs down really small for the ride.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on April 13, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

40" chest, 32" waist

I wore this once on a test-run.

I love the fabric; super light, sheds a drizzle, and breathes really well. That's been covered pretty well in the other reviews, so enough of that. However, I'm not sold on some of the fit decisions. The chest and arms are great; trim but not tight. The sleeve length could be longer and I wish they used thumb holes instead of the Arcteryx-style wrist closures. I'm used to wearing light gloves, then using thumb holes or balling up my hands and pulling the sleeves down when it gets too cold, which I can't really do with this. I'm not a fan of the hem either. It's not long enough to cover my butt, so the stretchy part rides up and gives me this goofy-looking mushroom top. I'd like to see a long hem to cover the butt with stretch around the whole circumference to keep it place or the current length with no stretch so it doesn't ride up.

I'm torn; I love the fabric, but hate some of the fit aspects.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on April 7, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I have a 1 year-old Aussie mix, and this is awesome for fetch. It's about the size and weight of a baseball, so you can really chuck it, and it has a little bit of whistle when thrown. The odd shape makes for some interesting bounces on hard surfaces, and it's large enough not to fit under the couch which I like.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on April 7, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: Large

11.5 shoe, L

I got a pair of these for free from a trail race last year, and I loved them enough to buy two more pairs. They're super comfy, don't stink, and the 1/4 length is great for cycling and trail running.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on March 31, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: Runs small
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 175 lbs

It's light, reflective, keeps my ears warm, and the sweat out of my eyes. I wear a medium Giro road helmet and the fit on this is good, not great. There's a heavier-duty elastic band in the middle that pinches my ears unless I position it just right, which is annoying, but not a deal-breaker. If you're looking for a headband/helmet-liner, or if you have a big dome, the half-buff might be a better option (I have both).

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on March 24, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: Runs large
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

40" chest, 32" waist

I love the material; reasonably warm, and super comfortable. I like the cut in the sleeves, chest, and neck, but wish the waist was trimmer. I did get this on sale, so I took it to my tailor with all the money I saved. Not surprisingly, first thing she said was "That's a nice shirt."

I don't think I'd pay full price for regular fit, but if OR made one just like it in slim, I'd buy them all.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on March 24, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: Runs large
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: 32x32

I originally bought a pair of grey ones in a Toad&Co store last year, and liked them enough that I just got another pair in the honey brown. The fabric is wonderfully stretchy and soft, and looks a little cleaner than your standard jeans.

I usually wear a 33" waist, but found the 32" to be a better fit; doesn't require a belt, but not overly tight. I also normally wear a 30" inseam, but decided that was a touch too short, so I got the 32" and had a tailor take off an inch.

I have 24.5" quads, and these are perfect. I tried on some of their slim-fit pants, and they felt too restrictive. If you have muscular legs, regular fit is the way to go.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on March 15, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times
Fit: True to size
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

40" chest, 32" waist

My old rain shell bit the dust after a few years of heavy use, so I decided I wanted to upgrade a little. I needed something to check these boxes:
1. Trim enough to fit a button-down or light fleece and not much else.
2. Packable enough that I won't think twice about bringing it when I travel.
3. Durable enough not to get trashed by backpack straps.
4. Breathable enough that I won't feel like I'm in a sauna when bike commuting.

After searching around and getting a recommendation from Leta, I decided on the Axiom. It's trim enough to look good with just a t-shirt, but has enough room for my Atom LT if needed. It's packable enough to fit in a medium Eagle Creek cube with a base layer or my wife's rain coat without having to force it. I've used it 6 times and the durability seems to be fine. Based on the other reviews, I have nothing to worry about there. Breathability is activity dependent as always, but this jacket surprised me. I can wear it up to 50 while biking before I start sweating like crazy and actually felt chilly standing around at 60 when the wind was blowing, which is very similar to my running jacket which isn't waterproof and has lots of ventilation holes.

I know it would add some weight, but I'd still like to see pit zips for when I'm super active (bike commuting). The hem isn't tight enough for me to return it, but a little more room would be nice.

My biggest regret is that when I stopped to help someone change a flat, I casually laid my jacket on my bike, and got some grease on the hood. Totally goofed on that one..

Since I'm sure you'll read this Leta, how would you compare this to the Realm? I didn't know about it until I already bought this and put some grease on it.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on March 9, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

39.5-40" chest, S/M

I ordered the S/M and M/L in this, plus the M/L Salomon ADV Skin 5, and ended up keeping the S/M Duro which says a lot because hydration vests are Salomon's wheelhouse. If you don't want to watch the sizing video, 34-40 is S/M, and 39-45 is M/L. I'm right in the middle, but opted for the smaller size because a vest like this should be snug.

The Good:
I really like the overall design and materials. The squishy mesh inner doesn't chafe at all, and you could probably go shirtless. The pocket selection is solid and the compression straps on the back keep everything locked-down. I run with my dog, so I carry his leash in the big pocket, poop bags in one kangaroo pocket, and a 1/2 cup measuring cup for him to drink out of in the other, plus my phone, buff, and a gel in the front with room to spare. The main reasons I kept the Duro are the excellent bladder integration (easy removal/refilling) and the stiff plastic strips on the front for the straps. They provide the perfect amount of structure and prevent one side of the vest from being higher than the other. Seriously. So nice having everything lined up without having to think about it.

The Bad:
Fit is subjective, but I think Osprey could do a better job here. Only offering two sizes in a running vest seems crazy. Ultimate Direction has 3, Salomon has 4 in their Advanced line, and a whopping 5 in the S-lab. If Osprey added two more sizes, they could ditch the side compression, extend the rear kangaroo and front mesh pockets, and really dial in the fit. Check out the Salomon vest for what I mean.

If the Duro fits you without having to cinch everything down a ton, you'll love it.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on March 6, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

18.5" torso, S/M

I got a 34L M/L for Christmas, which is what I originally wanted. After using that for a couple weeks, it seemed too big, so I had a pack fitting done and ended up sizing down to the S/M. After two more weeks, I decided the 34L version was just too big, so here I am with the 26L.

I love the pocket selection, kickstand, and ventilated back-panel. The zippered side pocket is too small for my phone, but it holds a tube, hex set, and a couple levers just fine. I found the zippered tablet pocket holds my larger-than-normal pump without affecting the laptop at all. I keep my coffee inside the main compartment and use the stretchy pocket for keys and building pass.

I hate the stretchy load-lifters. Some people like them, but I found they bounce when going over bumps and amplify the side-to-side motion when pedaling off the saddle (think climbing a hill where your body naturally goes side-to-side a little). I also really wish they had a hip belt with pockets like most of their other technical packs. It would be a great spot for keys/building pass and wouldn't dig into my side like the current one. I may end up removing it because it's fairly uncomfortable.

I spent a couple weeks debating whether to pick up a Manta 28 because the suspension is so good, but ended up with the Radial because I carry a laptop everyday. I can't decide if I've made the right choice though...

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on March 1, 2017

4 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I do all kinds of active stuff, so I have lots of water bottles; most of which are the basic plastic ones from races, but I have a couple nice ones (Camelback Podium/Eddy). If I'm hiking, biking, travelling or playing some soccer, I'll grab ones of those because they're bigger and I don't really need something insulated.

However, this is perfect for taking coffee to work while bike commuting. I can throw it in my bag or the stretchy side pocket and secure it with a carabiner and not have to worry about it leaking or falling out. While 18oz is small for water, it's great for a cup in the morning, and another in the afternoon. Dishwasher safe is a big plus too! $30 is pricey, but the leak-proof, carabiner-friendly design are pretty cool.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on February 22, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

I got mine as a gift 2 years ago, and its lived on my desk at work ever since. The wide opening is great for the ice machine, the lid controls the flow, and the insulated design keeps the condensation puddle at bay. I prefer a traditional mug for coffee, so I can't comment on how well it keeps stuff hot.

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on February 22, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Everyone needs a minimum of 2 bags in their life. A 20-30L backpack, and a carry-on legal duffel. The backpack is up to you, but this should be your duffel. I've had mine for about a year, and can honestly say it's the best overall carry-on design you can buy. Most people who travel have realized you can fit more stuff in a duffel vs a similarly sized roller because you don't have to account for the wheels or handle. However, what separates this from the rest of the duffel world are the pockets, carry options, and clam-shell opening. Packing cubes take this to another level. Go with the Eagle Creek Pack-It Specters to save weight.

Pockets:
1. The tiny exterior pocket will hold a pair of shoes or a couple pairs of flip-flops, keeping them separate from your clothes. Best option is wear the shoes, pack the flops.
2. Small exterior pocket has organization for all your cords, wallet, passport, travel docs, etc. I always carry my phone, but found the padded pockets holds my Anker battery perfectly for emergency juice. Having this stuff accessible while not showing off the rest of your stuff is key.
3. Large interior pocket will hold a variety of cubes. I recently returned from 8 days in Costa Rica and brought 2 large cubes, 2 medium cubes, 1 small cube, and a toiletry bag with room to spare.
4. Two small interior pockets hold small items. I used one for socks, and the other for some emergency meds and a small travel camera.
5. Behind the small interior pockets is another that's great for keeping items flat. It held my suit and wife's dress for a wedding we went to last summer without any trouble. Alternatively, you can keep this pocket empty and use it for dirty/clean clothes depending on where you are on your trip.
6. Laptop sleeve. Want your laptop, but don't want to carry a second bag to keep it protected? Done.
7. Tiny pocket with zippered bottom for sliding over a roller. I don't use a roller, but it's good for holding my kindle and pass while boarding.

Carry Options:
1. Two handles make grabbing it out of a trunk or overhead bin easy.
2. Backpack straps are wonderful if this is only bag you bring. Otherwise, tuck them away, and the use the...
3. Shoulder hardness for when you're also carrying that 20-30L backpack. You can remove this and stuff it into the backpack strap area when not in use.

Clam-shell:
Having the bag split in half makes packing and accessing your stuff much easier than a traditional duffel. You'll come to love it when you can just open the bag on the floor in the hotel, and see everything nicely laid out.

The Black Hole series gets all the recognition, but this is the better travel bag. Like everyone has mentioned, the 3-5 day suggestion is crap, and will easily get you through twice that. If you want to go full travel-pro, get one of those super compressible day packs (Sea To Summit, Osprey Ultralight, etc.) for all that Costa Rican coffee you're going to bring home...

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Jon

Jonwrote a review of on February 19, 2017

4 5

Fit: Runs small
Height: 5' 10"
Weight: 175 lbs
Size Purchased: Medium

40" chest
32-33" waist

I didn't buy this, but tried it on at the local Arcteryx store in Boston while shopping for a new shell. I have an Atom LT, so I'll compare it directly to that.

Fabric: Seems more durable than the Atom, and more closely resembles the Gamma series in overall feel, which I prefer.

Fit: It feels trimmer overall, and is most noticeable in the waist and arm holes. The waist is fine for me, and had enough room for a t-shirt and wool baselayer. I have larger shoulders, and the arm holes felt restrictive in the pit area. I can't tell if it's fabric build-up, or needs more room in the arm hole/chest , but I found it uncomfortable, and wouldn't like it for everyday wear.

Open up the pit area a bit, and I'd probably take the Proton over the Atom.

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