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Clydesdales/Athenas (200+ lb / 91+ kg) Looking to lose that spare tire? Ideal weight 200+? Frustrated being a large cyclist in a sport geared for the ultra-light? Learn about the bikes and parts that can take the abuse of a heavier cyclist, how to keep your body going while losing the weight, and get support from others who've been successful.

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Old 08-14-12, 05:04 PM   #1
JakiChan
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Do I want a jacket with arms that come off?

After two rides across the Golden Gate Bridge, I've decided a light riding windbreaker is in order. I tried this one on at the Pearl Izumi factory store that I liked, but when I got home I found that it came in two versions - the convertible version that I tried on and a regular version with arms that don't come off.

The convertible version is $20-ish more than the regular version. Not a huge amount of money, but what I like about this jacket is that it is moderately priced. And I'm worried that when/if I lose the last 25 pounds that it might become a bit too big, so I don't wanna spend too much money.

So that being said - how many of you fellow Clydes prefer to ride with a vest? I'd prefer $55 to $75, but I'm considering spending $75 to be happy rather than $55 and be less than happy - just wondering if folks find the removable arms to be worth it.
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Old 08-14-12, 05:07 PM   #2
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Myself, I prefer the sleeves that come off.
Now the Black Knight in Search for the Holy Grail may have a different answer about wanting arms that come off.
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Old 08-14-12, 05:11 PM   #3
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After having gone around in circles on the same subject earlier in the year I would say a wind shirt / vest and arm warmers would be the way to go.

Actually arm warmers alone are surprisingly comfortable in cool weather. I'll wear just those down into the 50s. I also bought a variety of base layers that are very comfortable into the 70s, so i kind of mentally juggle which set of warm things I want to wear when I get up to go.

As for jackets- the main issue I have is that when they're too warm, they're WAY too warm and they're hard to stow. Arm warmers take up no room in your jersey pockets, and a wind vest is similarly small.

YMMV. Gore Phantom II was what I was looking at but they're apparently out of stock. keep your eyes peeled for the III I guess.
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Old 08-14-12, 05:16 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by TrojanHorse View Post
After having gone around in circles on the same subject earlier in the year I would say a wind shirt / vest and arm warmers would be the way to go.
So then I'd get the jacket with the arms that come off and use it as a vest.

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Actually arm warmers alone are surprisingly comfortable in cool weather. I'll wear just those down into the 50s.
I've got a set. Riding back across the GGB at 2pm they didn't do squat. I wanted wind protection for my core.

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As for jackets- the main issue I have is that when they're too warm, they're WAY too warm and they're hard to stow. Arm warmers take up no room in your jersey pockets, and a wind vest is similarly small.
Not much difference between a wind jacket and a wind vest, really? I can't imagine the arms taking up that much room.

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YMMV. Gore Phantom II was what I was looking at but they're apparently out of stock. keep your eyes peeled for the III I guess.
Even in closeout/discount that's more than the options I'm looking at and more than I wanna spend at this point. It's on amazon for $90 - I'm debating $55 vs $75.
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Old 08-14-12, 06:14 PM   #5
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So get what you want, I was just offering up some tihngs I thought about. My jacket does not fit in my jersey pockets, and it's just a waterproof shell. Wind vests tend to be very insubstantial except for some wind blocking material in front.
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Old 08-14-12, 06:54 PM   #6
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Kind of strange, The links you posted show the removable sleeves with a back pocket but doesn't say it on the page.

The link that says pockets, one rear and two front doesn't show it on the jacket (magnifier).

My PI windbreaker has no pockets ($70) and that sucks. Gina's has removable sleeves and several pockets for $110. I wish I had paid the extra $30. I did buy mine before we bought hers but knowing now, I'd go for the options.
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Old 08-14-12, 07:08 PM   #7
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Do I want a jacket with arms that come off?

I have the jacket with sleeves. Got it on sale. Rarely wear it. Might more in winter
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Old 08-14-12, 07:21 PM   #8
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Yes, you need it. ;-)
Wind jacket with removable sleeves is a very versatile piece of gear.
Allows for many layer combinations to adjust quickly along long rides or sudden changes in weather.
I do have a couple vests, hardly use them now. Can't find a scenario in which the vest would work but the wind jacket (sleeves removed) wouldn't. If i were starting all over, i'd skip the vests completely.
Make sure it has pockets!!
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Old 08-14-12, 08:19 PM   #9
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I really like the versatility of the jacket with removable sleeves. Great for vacations or when you are packing in advance of the ride not knowing what conditions will be.
Mine has a large back pocket, two front zipped slash pockets, and some interior mesh pockets.
The entire jacket can be turned inside the back pocket and zipped shut; then there is a elastic strap with a clasp to carry it around your waist.
A removable hood would be awesome but mine doesn't have one.
I use it in vest mode most of the time for improved ventilation. I'll start morning rides or finish evening rides with the sleeves on. Arm warmers don't fit me well at all.
Sugoi makes a jacket with sleeves that attach with magnets instead of zippers. It's almost like magic how fast it is to change from vest to jacket or vice-versa. Wish they had a women's model in HiVis.

Last edited by nkfrench; 08-14-12 at 08:28 PM.
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Old 08-14-12, 09:27 PM   #10
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Quote:
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Kind of strange, The links you posted show the removable sleeves with a back pocket but doesn't say it on the page.

The link that says pockets, one rear and two front doesn't show it on the jacket (magnifier).
Well, with the convertible one I'm pretty sure about the configuration. I scanned the bar code at the store and that's what came up on Amazon, and the UPC changes from year to year. I could be wrong, but Amazon returns are easy.
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Old 08-15-12, 05:29 AM   #11
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I love mine but where I live I sometimes ride with it, arm warmers, merlino wool shirt and undershirt and Jersey and wool leggings and riding leggings and boot covers, hand warmers and foot warmers....Really I love mine.
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Old 08-16-12, 02:15 AM   #12
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I have a mid-weight PI jacket with removable sleeves that I really like, but I've never removed the sleeves. Once I think I unzipped them a bit to get more airflow. If I had a choice I personally wouldn't get this type again.
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Old 08-16-12, 03:37 AM   #13
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I have the Canari Eclipse Jacket - llbean $65. I love it. I use the vest more than the vest jacket combo. It also turns into a fanny pack for days it warms up. In my opinion, the removable arms are worth the extra $$.
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Old 08-16-12, 12:39 PM   #14
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I went to to an LBS to check out a Showers Pass jacket and decided that I really wanted the PI jacket and I paid for the removable sleeves. It'll be here Friday - just in time for a short ride on Saturday.
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Old 08-16-12, 01:16 PM   #15
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If the arms came off of a jacket I bought I would return it and demand a refund.
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Old 08-16-12, 07:52 PM   #16
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I own a Gore Phantom jacket with removable sleeves. I like the versatility of the zip-off sleeves. I often start out wearing the full jacket in the morning, zip off the sleeves after a couple of hours, then have the vest completely unzipped by mid-day.
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Old 08-16-12, 08:07 PM   #17
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I own a Gore Phantom jacket with removable sleeves. I like the versatility of the zip-off sleeves. I often start out wearing the full jacket in the morning, zip off the sleeves after a couple of hours, then have the vest completely unzipped by mid-day.
^^^^^ +1

I wish I had a convertible rain/wind shell and light micro fleece or softshell jackets.

I am forever trying to determine whether I need my long sleeve base layer, jacket, vest etc. And most days I face a scenario as described by sstorkel, where all of them would be ideal at some point of the ride. It's New Zealand, where we get three to four seasons packed into each and every day.
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