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Wow Expensive Shorts Really Do Make A Difference!

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Wow Expensive Shorts Really Do Make A Difference!

Old 05-24-13, 01:21 AM
  #1  
sharp
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Wow Expensive Shorts Really Do Make A Difference!

I've been wanting to buy some new bib shorts for some time now, and I really wanted to step up to a mid level, if not top of the line pair. I was thinking mainly Assos or Castelli. Yikes, their top of the line bibs are EXPENSIVE! I was hesitant, not only because of the hogh price, but also because I had never tried either brand, and I did not know if they would fit? Then I ran into a sale at an online shop for $99 off on a top of the line pair of Bontragers RXXXL bib shorts. I didn't know if they were any good, but I did know that Bontrager's fit me. I had a thermal pair (about $50) and they fit me and I liked them. Unfortunately I crashed last month and they were destroyed, plus it's summer now and I needed a new pair! $100 seemed very reasonable, when the MSRP is $199!

Got them a couple of days ago, and wore them today for the first time. Wow! There is a real difference in comfort, at least in the pad! I was very impressed. Big difference in comfort, at least in the crotch /ass area when compared with low to mid level shorts and bibs!
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Old 05-24-13, 01:31 AM
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Incorrect. Quality ​shorts really do make a difference.
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Old 05-24-13, 04:16 AM
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Agree with above, price and quality are not synonymous.
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Old 05-24-13, 04:23 AM
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This has always makes me shake my head. People spend +3 grand on bike and have a problem spending $200 on the primary contact point. Glad you like your bibs.
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Old 05-24-13, 05:57 AM
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I discovered this myself a couple of days ago. I had one pair of bargain basement bike shorts with a thin chamois, which did little to none for comfort. I tried on some bibs and short at my LBS. I was ready to pull the trigger on $150 bibs, but they didn't have my size. I ended up buying some Bontrager shorts. These things are light years ahead of the old tired shorts I was wearing. My first ride in them, which included going commando for the first time, was a big improvement in comfort level. I still plan on picking up some bibs in the near future.
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Old 05-24-13, 07:05 AM
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anyone have the castelli free aero race bibs? im thinking about pulling the trigger and wondering what you think
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Old 05-24-13, 03:28 PM
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I have three pair of cycling bibs that I rotate. My least favorite are the Pearl Izum Elite Inrcool, just doesn't fit my body well. The Castelli Kiss are great for shorter rides because of their thinner padding, and they fit like a glove. My go to bibs for hot days and long rides are the Assos T FI.Uno_ S5!!! Way to expensive, but they feel awesome! I plan on wearing them till they are totally threadbare. I'm hoping I can get many years of riding out of them.
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Old 05-24-13, 05:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Gjc985 View Post
anyone have the castelli free aero race bibs? im thinking about pulling the trigger and wondering what you think

yes I do, and castelli are by far my favorite line of clothing and I have tried a few. I ride both the free aero and the endurance bibs / shorts
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Old 05-24-13, 06:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Gjc985 View Post
anyone have the castelli free aero race bibs? im thinking about pulling the trigger and wondering what you think
Absolutely brilliant, tight, comfy, no leg slide, and they look great.
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Old 05-24-13, 07:30 PM
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I could not agree more. I'm getting back into cycling after almost 2 years out and invested in a good quality bib this time around; can not believe the difference. Back then I cheeped out and got a couple pair of shorts from nashbar (their brand, ~$25 jobs). They were 'ok' but my sit bone was seriously tender for a few weeks. This time around, I spent the money and got a Pearl Izumi bib (not even their top of the line) and even after ~30 miles on a few different rides I have no discomfort. I had a better saddle on my old bike too...
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Old 05-24-13, 07:57 PM
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I got my first pair of Assos (S5 Uno) this past week, and to be honest, it doesn't seem like anything special other than it came in a box with a slick marketing booklet inside. PI P.R.O. is still my favorite set, with some mid range LG bibs being the runner ups. My Performance brand bib is ok, and they're my 3rd choice tied with the Assos Uno. What seems to be important is finding a quality bib that fits how you like it to fit, and that'll probably be as different as what saddles people choose.
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Old 05-25-13, 05:52 AM
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Originally Posted by Tom Sawyer View Post
They were 'ok' but my sit bone was seriously tender for a few weeks.
You need to ride the bike not just sit on it. Raise up over bumps let you legs absorb them, not your backside.
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Old 05-25-13, 05:55 AM
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bibs rule.
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Old 05-25-13, 06:32 AM
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Originally Posted by clausen View Post
You need to ride the bike not just sit on it. Raise up over bumps let you legs absorb them, not your backside.
Absolutely... unless I'm caught by surprise by an unnoticed bump I always raise up over bumps. I probably have an unfair comparison though, Nashbar shorts vs PI Bib but I'm glad I went in for something higher quality this time.
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Old 05-25-13, 06:41 AM
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I have a pair of Castelli Body Paint 2.0 bib shorts and Sorpasso Bib Kickers. Both offer the same pad and are top notch. The sizing is a bit weird (Body Paint = Large, Sorpasso = Medium), but I love them both. I'm testing out new saddles, and I'm not a big fan of my demo Fizik Arione VS while wearing my typical shorts (Voler Estrella pad), but while I was in my Body Paint bibs yesterday, the saddle felt great.

You can find Castelli bibs on sale, and when they are, they are a fantastic buy. I wouldn't mind picking up a pair of Castelli Endurance bibs, the cheapest offering with the X2 pad. I've also considered some Assos bibs as well. Ribble has a pair for $152. I'd hate to order the wrong size considering how far I'd have to ship it back...

Also curious how PI Pro bibs feel. After trying on jerseys, I think the PI Pro Leader jersey takes the cake for my favorite jersey.

Also considering other Voler shorts. I just don't like the Estrella pad.
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Old 05-25-13, 07:08 AM
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Originally Posted by THSdrummer View Post
I have a pair of Castelli Body Paint 2.0 bib shorts and Sorpasso Bib Kickers. Both offer the same pad and are top notch. The sizing is a bit weird (Body Paint = Large, Sorpasso = Medium), but I love them both. I'm testing out new saddles, and I'm not a big fan of my demo Fizik Arione VS while wearing my typical shorts (Voler Estrella pad), but while I was in my Body Paint bibs yesterday, the saddle felt great.

You can find Castelli bibs on sale, and when they are, they are a fantastic buy. I wouldn't mind picking up a pair of Castelli Endurance bibs, the cheapest offering with the X2 pad. I've also considered some Assos bibs as well. Ribble has a pair for $152. I'd hate to order the wrong size considering how far I'd have to ship it back...

Also curious how PI Pro bibs feel. After trying on jerseys, I think the PI Pro Leader jersey takes the cake for my favorite jersey.

Also considering other Voler shorts. I just don't like the Estrella pad.
Check chain reaction - very pleased with their pricing on Castelli bib shorts.
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Old 05-25-13, 07:38 AM
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In bib shorts, the first thing is the pad/insert/chamois, the second is the Lycra compression material, the rest is just packaging and marketing. The price sweet spot so far for me is the Castelli Aero or Endurnace with the x2 pad. The PI PRO with 4D pad is very good too for longer rides; the Assos UNo is nothing specially and it's not really designed for longer rides; but the Mille and SS are top notch but pricy. I heard tri guys swear by Desoto but I haven't tried yet. Another way I have good luck with is the Sugoi RS; they are very comfortable for long rides for me, but they don't seem to work for a lot other people. I saw their new RSE line. With a different pad the other day for a very reasonable price. I may give them a try next or when they go on sale at the end of the season.
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Old 05-25-13, 07:39 AM
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I got a pair of Sugoi Evolutions at half price. Haven't looked back.
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Old 05-25-13, 07:46 AM
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I ride with high end Castelli and Descent and yes, they make a big difference in comfort and slight compression. Only Bontrager I have is their XXX stem and h20 cages.
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Old 05-25-13, 10:52 AM
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Originally Posted by ThinLine View Post
I ride with high end Castelli and Descent and yes, they make a big difference in comfort and slight compression. Only Bontrager I have is their XXX stem and h20 cages.
+1
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Old 05-25-13, 01:53 PM
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Originally Posted by Tom Sawyer View Post
I could not agree more. I'm getting back into cycling after almost 2 years out and invested in a good quality bib this time around; can not believe the difference. Back then I cheeped out and got a couple pair of shorts from nashbar (their brand, ~$25 jobs). They were 'ok' but my sit bone was seriously tender for a few weeks.
Lots of body parts will be sore when you get back into cycling after almost 2 years out, whether your kit is basic or quality.
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Old 05-25-13, 03:22 PM
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Bibs do rule -- though I find most other women I ride with don't like them as much. I actually prefer the European mens kits fit, oddly. My favorite are Vermarc and Castelli, though Capo makes a very comfortable lightweight bib. I also like Nalini though the cut is small so I usually size up.

I have bibs made specially for women though I've never found much difference between them and the mens. I sometimes wonder if women are actually designing them. The one caveat is Rapha but it's way too pricey for me.
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Old 05-25-13, 03:50 PM
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Originally Posted by clausen View Post
People spend +3 grand on bike and have a problem spending $200 on the primary contact point.
You can't understand why some people don't want to drop $600-800 on enough bibs/shorts to get them through the week?
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Old 05-25-13, 03:57 PM
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Originally Posted by Dunbar View Post
You can't understand why some people don't want to drop $600-800 on enough bibs/shorts to get them through the week?
Wash your clothe more than once a week. Not a difficult problem to solve. I've seen guys who where broke hand washing there kit after every ride.
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Old 05-25-13, 05:57 PM
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Quality is usually more expensive, usually. You get what you pay for.
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