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allen

allen

allen

allenwrote a review of on November 19, 2017

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer
Fit: True to size

I've been cycling for years, mostly road, and have exclusively used Oakley sunglasses in one form or another. So of course I try their vented RadarLock Trail Prizm sunglasses when I turned to mountain biking. After a few uses, I felt they were a bit too dark for the trail, and despite being vented, still fogged up. Enter the Smith Attack sunglasses.

I exchanged the Oakley's for the Smith's. I knew you got two pairs of lenses with the Smith's, which includes a ChromaPop Contrast Rose lens, very similar to the Chromapop Smith goggles I use for low light skiing. Wow, what an improvement in light transmission and visibility! And the Contrast Rose still help cut the bright glare of the sun when I was in open field. And despite not being vented, these sunglasses fogged up less than the vented Oakleys! I am so impressed, I want to buy a pair for my son if Smith can do these in prescription form. Here's hoping. I recently purchased a Smith helmet and of course, the fit with these sunglasses is fantastic!

Great sunglasses, and the magnetic Pivlock is literally a snap to use. No instructions necessary. The only con I can think of is the case. I found you do have to take the arms off to store in the included case, and the arms do bounce around in the case, too. Would've been nicer if you could just leave the arms on folded. But that's a relatively small nit for such a great pair of glasses! Highly recommended!

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allen

allenwrote a review of on February 7, 2013

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

This is my first pair of Castelli cycling gloves (I'm just beginning to get into Castelli gear now). Took them out twice for rides that started in the low 20F (11F with windchill) and ended in the high 20s, maybe hitting 30F. Started out a bit cold, but once I got warmed up, the gloves kept me nice and warm for 30-40 mile rides. Would think they could go below 20 and still keep my hands warm.

My hands measure 7"from base of palm to top of middle finger. That makes me either a small or a medium per Castelli sizing. BC only had the medium so that's what I got. It fit well, a little bit long in the fingers, but not excessively so. It was still easy to change gears, brake, etc. I have tried on the Lightness glove and the small fits great, but the small Chiro Due might be a bit too tight. If they had a small Estremo, I would try those.

The gloves are fairly thick relative to other cycling gloves I have (Gore Xenon), but you feel that as extra warmth when you start out. The palm of the glove feels a little 'fleshy', like there was too much material there, but it didn't interfere with handling the bike at all.

Great glove, bought a second pair as soon as BC had another one in. Highly recommended!

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allen

allenwrote a review of on December 15, 2012

4 5

This is my first Castelli article ever. I slimmed down a bit from cycling the last 2 years and wanted something tighter fitting than my Gore Phantom jackets. Enter the Espresso Due.

The jacket is made from Gore's Windstopper membrane, albeit a different one than what Gore uses on its jackets. Castelli's is stretchier, allowing for a tighter fit that hugs, shapes, and moves with the body easily.

I am 5'7", 150lbs, 35" chest. Castelli's chart says I'm a small and that's what I went with. Fit like a glove! But this is the only jacket that I could go by Castelli's size chart. I've tried other Castelli jackets since this one, and I've had to size up and get a medium in those (Zoncolan).

This jacket is super warm. It is Windstopper everywhere, and medium pile fleece everywhere (by comparison, the Gore Xenon SO jacket is also windstopper everywhere, but only has a low pile fleece in strategic locations). The Castelli has lots of venting options though, 2 that are manually regulated by the rider (front chest and arm zips) and 2 that are not (shoulder vents, rear pocket vents.

Castelli rates the jacket 32F-50sF. I think they should subtract 5-10 degrees from either end. It's a fairly warm jacket and you will sweat quite a bit in it. But what's annoying is that if I have a lot of stuff in the rear pockets, I'll get some cold wind in the back, chilling my sweaty back. I've since learned to keep my back pockets lean with this jacket.

It's a great jacket, love the look and love the hand of the fabric. I think it has a lower temperature range than Castelli advertises because the jacket works so well, maybe too well, limiting its versatility (hence the -1 star).

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allen

allenwrote a review of on December 15, 2012

5 5

Great base layer! Use it to go cycling in the winter months. Does a great job wicking away sweat, and keeps me warm even when wet. Open the jacket and it dries fairly quickly, too. Awesome stuff.

I also have an older version of this shirt, recently purchased from BC (i.e., it's not old and shrunken). It seems like this new one is slightly larger so is not as skin tight as the previous version, which I like. But the new one does feel a little heavier and warmer. Either way, it's another great article from Smartwool!

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allen

allenwrote a review of on November 17, 2012

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

Great slim fit. Hugs the body well the way I like my baselayers to. I'm 5'7" and 150lbs and both their tops and bottom base layers in small fit me like a glove! I use these layers as baselayers while cycling in the fall/winter. Soaks up sweat like no tomorrow!

Versus Icebreaker: I like the fit of Smartwool more than the corresponding Icebreaker body fit item. IB feels a bit looser and not as snug as Smartwool. But IB feels a little bit warmer (260gm vs 250gm) and has those great thumb loops. But in the end, I think the snug (but not tight) fit of Smartwool will be more effective in the long run.

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allen

allenwrote a review of on January 31, 2010

5 5

Just returned from skiing with this jacket this weekend. Temps were about 2 degrees F in the morning, warming up to about 15F in the afternoon. I wore just a mid-weight Icebreaker base layer and an Arc Tau shirt and the Kappa SV. This combo kept me warm all day, if not hot during some points. Even when just sitting outside in 9F in the afternoon, I was still very comfortable. I had brought my Arc Hercules, but didn't need to break it out! :-) Luckily, it was not too windy, but I know that's not a problem for Windstopper!

Awesome jacket. Bought one for my wife as well!

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