This time it’s a proper blog…Without breaking out into GOT-mode the Melbourne winter that has been coming for a while has arrived. Whilst this makes ski-bunnies very happy, it’s the start 3 months of of cold, wet and generally crappy weather. My wife reckoned I was as cold as an ice block after last Tuesday’s ride, the wind chill factor the westerly or northerly is pretty significant this time of year. Its particularly tough on the hands as my old gloves just weren’t warm enough. So a few weeks ago I bought 2 new sets of long finger ‘winter’ style gloves from local bike shops in Port Melbourne. They are:
BONTRAGER VELOCIS WINDSHELL GLOVE
Bontrager’s blurb describes these gloves as being lightweight, windproof and water-resistant. The main material being something called “Profila Windshell fabric” which weirdly looks a lot like vinyl but is highly wind and water resistant.
The inner glove surfaces are fleece lined which does a great job of keeping your hands warm. Whilst they are thick and will take time to wear in, they are not really padded except for the palm. The gloves cover the wrist and have velcro clasp and elastic banding to provide a snug fit. The silicon grip is placed on the palm side of the thumb and first two fingers. This seems to work. Overall they are very well made and after about 20 hours of use haven’t shown any signs of splitting at the seams. Mind you at the $70-$80 price point you would be greatly annoyed if that occurred. Bontrager does have a 30 day unconditional warranty, provided you’ve got the receipt.
The main issue I have with these gloves is the fit. People in the US must have long thin hands. A medium gave me a tight fit over the back of my hand and through the the palm, but came with ridiculously long fingers. The small size wouldn’t even fit on my hand. I’ve been trying to mould the medium size glove into the shape of hands ever since I bought them. I think this will come with use over time. This is one of the reasons that I don’t buy gloves online. You really have to try them on. I’m giving them 3 and 1/2 Marvs.
BELLWEATHER WINDSTORM GLOVE
Bellwether’s blurb describes the Windstorm glove as a mid-weight, full finger cycling glove, offering protection from windchill. They are also supposed to be breathable thus preventing overheating leading to sweaty hands.
The key feature being that the gloves are predominately composed of softshell neoprene. The inner glove is fleece lined. This is comfortable, very warm and stretchy but offers minimal water resistance. I’ve worn the gloves for about 2 weeks in cold, windy conditions and they have been very effective in reducing windchill. The gloves are also cut with a high elastic wrist and have a velcro clasp to secure them. The big plus in these gloves is that Bellweather seems to offer a greater range of sizing. I found the size 8 to be a perfect fit. They were also approximately $15 cheaper than the Bontrangers. Overall, I would say they are well made. None of the stitching has split and the material of glove has held up well.
They are very warm, but I’ve found that I’m getting very sweaty wrists. So I think the breathability is also limited. They have some reflective decals on the back of the wrist. I’m starting to this material crack and lift on the fingers. I also found the positioning of the silicon grip on exclusively on the palm a bit surprising. I’m not sure whether the gloves would become slippy on break levels in the rain. They do not have any padding of any kind. I’m giving them 4 Marvs.
So hopefully that’s useful information if you are considering purchasing gloves soon. Its only a couple of weeks until Le Tour.
Until next time, safe cycling