A couple of weeks ago I thought I had better start looking for a lighter weight cycling jacket as my normal one is more of a winter weight one . I made a short list of requirements ie to some degree shower resistant , some reflective piping , at least a rear pouch and if possible either a chest or front waist pocket .
The next bit was to start looking at jackets and to see what was out there and what prices they were so I could work out my budget , I have tried both Altura and Endura winter jackets and both have left me disappointed so those two makes were crossed of the the list before it had even been compiled. Next off the list was Madison as my current winter jacket is one of theirs and again I am not impressed due to a lot of the reflective wording and other detail having all fell off .
Imagine my surprise when I was approached by Chinese company GearBest to pick some items that I would be happy to do some reviews on , I looked at the huge range of products they offer and thought to myself why not see what they do in the way of Lightweight Cycling Jackets , sure enough they had a few options which fitted the bill . On closer comparison I decided that I liked the look of the Rockbros “ Tour De France “ Summer weight jacket for one reason or another .
Once I placed my order to GearBest I was told that it was in stock and would be despatched quite shortly , sure enough the next working day I had an automated text that the parcel was en route via DHL this message also included a tracking number so I could check on its progress as it made its way across from China . Two working days later I had another text stating the parcel was due to be delivered within the next 24 hours , and sure enough it was delivered the following day before lunch time so all in all it only took about the same time as a second class letter does in the UK via the post office .
Once the parcel was opened I could see that it had been well packaged to protect it in transit . It’s always nice to see a product that doesn’t really need any packaging being well packed as it gives me confidence that the people packing the parcel are taking some pride in their job and know what they are doing .
On initial inspection I am extremely happy with the quality of the Rockbros “Tour de France” jacket and it certainly feels nice when on , the fit feels good . The first ride was done in nice sunny conditions with just a polo style shirt underneath, it felt warm enough , the return journey a couple of hours later was done with a sweat shirt over the polo shirt and although only 10 minutes long I didn’t feel overly warm and the jacket still felt right in terms of fit .
The zip is one that can be undone from around the waist once done up , which is a handy option I hadn’t thought about before but it allows you to open as much of the lower section as you want to for extra ventilation , whilst we are talking zips this one seems to work okay and has a good feel to it . The stitching to attach the zip to the jacket looks neat and strong . The zip on the rear pouch and two side pockets are a bit smaller but again they all feel and look of similar quality in operation .
The cut of the jacket is more a “Race” fit than a touring style one, this is mainly shown in the lack of a longer back section to cover your backside when riding without guards when the roads are damp , and the sleeves lack the slightly curved cut which some other jackets have . Both the cuffs and waist are slightly elasticated and the neck seems to be cut slightly higher than normal . The back vent goes across the whole width of the jacket to provide good ventilation and hopefully to avoid the boil in the bag situation .
There is some reflective piping along the seams and a thick reflective band across the back just below the rear vent , there is none of the reflective paneling or wording that many other jackets have which in my finding don’t normally last six months before they fall off . I will be using this jacket mainly on my leisure rides so should see a fair bit of use and it will be interesting to see how it fairs .
More details and specification of the jacket can be found by clicking on the