Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

General cycling advice ( NOT technical ! )
Bmblbzzz
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby Bmblbzzz » 19 Sep 2019, 8:52am

deliquium wrote:
John_S wrote:Hi julk, Jamesh, Mike & NUKe,

The Paramo Men's Quito Jacket - the colour of the yellow hi vis one is good but it says that the jacket weighs 500g and to me I worry that this might be a bit thick/ heavyweight and it could lead to me overheating. It also has a hood and when cycling I wouldn't use a hood and I think that this might perhaps get in the way and be annoying.

John


A few years ago I tried on a Paramo Quito jacket when I was looking for a new cycling waterproof jacket.

I found it heavy and I didn't like the hood (preferring to wear a plain cotton cycling cap in the rain and a tight collared jacket). But the deal breaker for me was the SMALL being way way too big and baggy/flappy. I'm a slim bellied 37" chest. The sleeves were also rather uneccessarily voluminous in my opinion.

My personal OPINION, was it was more of an outdoor rambling jacket, rather then a dedicated cycling jacket.

I'm sure it would suit a great deal other folks though - these things are SO personal. - Any jacket really must be tried on and evaluated for fit and comfort before spending a lot of money!

I've got a Paramo jacket, not the Quito - can't remember its name - but the same material, and firstly I'd say it is breathable. Really very breathable, it's about the only waterproof jacket that deserves to be called breathable.

However, I'd agree that it is bulky and cut way too big. The long arms are apparently deliberate - the idea is that hikers can pull the sleeves down over their hands for protection from wind and wet up on the moors (or wherever) - and they seem to have carried this over to their cycling jacket. Also, I'm not sure they're terribly generous with the reflectives - though to be honest, this applies to many manufacturers who claim to have reflective features.

ratherbeintobago
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby ratherbeintobago » 19 Sep 2019, 9:30am

I thought Showers Pass had a sale on ATM?

mattheus
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby mattheus » 19 Sep 2019, 9:38am

Bmblbzzz wrote:Also, I'm not sure they're terribly generous with the reflectives - though to be honest, this applies to many manufacturers who claim to have reflective features.

AFAIK no-one has managed to solve the reflective-breathable-waterproof problem. So the more reflective area your jacket has, the worse its performance on other criteria.

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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby Bmblbzzz » 19 Sep 2019, 11:16am

Certainly those Pro-viz 100% reflective jackets seem to be incredibly sweaty. That's from observation and comments from owners, I don't have one, I know people with them. AFAIK the reflectivity comes from tiny glass beads, so it's no wonder they don't breathe!

John_S
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby John_S » 19 Sep 2019, 1:29pm

Re: the reflective / breathability problem reading about the Resolute Bay jackets they say that their reflective detail is integrated as the reflective stripes are woven into the fabric and so maybe this will help alleviate some of the issues.

Time will tell when I get the jacket.

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deliquium
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby deliquium » 19 Sep 2019, 4:49pm

Just to add to my previous comments and posts by others, I've just taken delivery of a NEW replacement of a several years old and very happy with (apart from tight cuffs) Gore Bike Wear GPATH Paclite jacket from eBay for £75 inc post and free Paypal return :)

At the same time as ordering a small Showers Pass Elite 2, with 10% discount and free return if not happy. £175 total.

Obviously won't be able to try it out in the real world rain - but will be interesting to compare general fit and personal comfort.

It's the vents that I'm keen to see if they can reduce the boil in the bag effectively, albiet at £100 more :wink:
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soapbox
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby soapbox » 19 Sep 2019, 7:24pm

Thanks to everyone who has responded the the OP. It's always a relevant question, and I hope the thread continues with suggestions as new products emerge, because everyone is in the market for a waterproof jacket at some time or another.

Bmblbzzz
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby Bmblbzzz » 19 Sep 2019, 9:18pm

deliquium wrote:Just to add to my previous comments and posts by others, I've just taken delivery of a NEW replacement of a several years old and very happy with (apart from tight cuffs) Gore Bike Wear GPATH Paclite jacket from eBay for £75 inc post and free Paypal return :)

At the same time as ordering a small Showers Pass Elite 2, with 10% discount and free return if not happy. £175 total.

Obviously won't be able to try it out in the real world rain - but will be interesting to compare general fit and personal comfort.

It's the vents that I'm keen to see if they can reduce the boil in the bag effectively, albiet at £100 more :wink:

To test ventilation or breathability, how about putting the jacket on and doing an indoor trainer session? If you have an indoor trainer, of course, or if a friend has one you could use. I'm not sure how effective it would be as a test, because obviously it wouldn't be conducted in rain; also, no breeze. I'm also dubious of the acceptability of sweating buckets in a jacket you're going to return.

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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby PH » 19 Sep 2019, 10:39pm

Bmblbzzz wrote:To test ventilation or breathability, how about putting the jacket on and doing an indoor trainer session?

That wouldn't do much to test the ventilation which relies on air flow.

rmurphy195
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby rmurphy195 » 19 Sep 2019, 11:04pm

I've got one of these for Winter use, been very happy with it
https://www.mountainwarehouse.com/mens-cycle-top-p25023.aspx/yellow/
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby simonineaston » 22 Sep 2019, 9:50pm

I've had a Paramo Ciclo jacket in hi-viz yellow for 2 years now and have been thoroughly delighted with it. Very comfy, very weather-proof, great fit for me and beautifully made. It is heavy and it was expensive and I suspect it'd be too warm for vigourous cyclists, but for me, it's perfect! I look forward to winter so I can wear it again!
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andrew_s
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby andrew_s » 5 Oct 2019, 12:38am

Bmblbzzz wrote:Certainly those Pro-viz 100% reflective jackets seem to be incredibly sweaty. That's from observation and comments from owners, I don't have one, I know people with them. AFAIK the reflectivity comes from tiny glass beads, so it's no wonder they don't breathe!

Yes, that is the case.
The silver reflective material is lots of tiny glass beads stuck on with a binder, and it is very poor in the breathable stakes. This is why most jackets designed for active use, where breathability is important, only use small amounts of it, as either piping along seams, or just on fringe areas such as the flaps covering pockets or the zip, round the cuffs, collar or hem.
In addition, the beads get rubbed off in due course, especially on piping, which stands proud of the jacket surface.
The alternative reflective material is micro-prismatic plastic, as commonly found in yellow sam browne belts. This is even worse at beathability.

Brightly coloured breathable jackets are fairly common.
In terms of breathable fabric, the best (and usually most expensive) are Goretex Active (note that there are several varieties of Goretex, not all as good), eVent, or Polartec Neoshell (rare).
However, even these share a common problem with cheaper fabrics - they depend on a DWR (durable water repellent) coating to make rain bead up on the surface of the jacket, so the fabric has somewhere to breathe the water vapour from inside out into.
After sufficient rain, the DWR will be overwhelmed, and the surface will wet out, so there's a continuous film of water on the outside of the fabric, at which point the jacket becomes effectively non-breathable.
The older the jacket gets, the quicker it wets out. You can do a fair amount by good care - keeping it clean, and reproofing occasionally (i,e, restoring the DWR using Nikwak or Grangers etc) , but it will never be as good as new.

As stated above, the best fabric for comfort is Goretex Shakedry. It's very breathable, and the surface of the fabric itself is water repellent, rather than relying on a coating. That means that wetting out doesn't happen to any significant degree, and the jacket will carry on breathable in all day rain.
Unfortunately, the outer layer is made from the same stuff as the inside of your non-stick frying pan, and is much the same colour (i.e. dark grey or black). Don't hold your breath waiting for any real improvement in its visibility. So far, "improvements" have been limited to adding small panels of normal waterproof material.

I've gone for Shakedry, combined with dynamo lights set to automatic, which turn themselves on as soon as the light starts to get dim (usually the case in proper rain).

Bmblbzzz
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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby Bmblbzzz » 5 Oct 2019, 5:32pm

AIUI the DWR is also prone to wearing off with use, being a coating on the surface. This doesn't (again AIUI) affect waterproofness - as long as the underlying material itself is undamaged - but as you say it effectively destroys the breathability.

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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby Barks » 7 Oct 2019, 12:14pm

DWR coatings can be ‘refreshed’ by cool ironing or a cool just warm tumble dry. Nikwax make products that can reapply the DWR coating. Just remember though effect ventilation is far more effective than any ‘breathable’ fabric and in rain (when you would expect to wear these things) the breathability is far less efficient than cold dry breezy air. There is no 100% solution no matter what any of the manufacturers might claim, and be even more wary of the claims made by v. expensive brands.

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Re: Can anyone recommend to me a breathable, brightly coloured & reflective waterproof jacket?

Postby PH » 7 Oct 2019, 12:37pm

andrew_s wrote:. You can do a fair amount by good care - keeping it clean, and reproofing occasionally (i,e, restoring the DWR using Nikwak or Grangers etc) , but it will never be as good as new.

There is unfortunately a bit of a conflict there, as the reproofing bonds better to any already existing on the fabric. So if you do a good job of the cleaning... you've just washed it all off.
I don't think there is a right answer, I'm currently washing in a very mild soap solution, which isn't enough to do a thorough clean, then reproofing, it's working so far and I can accept the jacket looking a bit grubby.