Saturday, February 17, 2007

Product Review: J&G Cyclewear Rain Cape

As promised, here's a review of the J&G Cyclewear rain cape. As mentioned in the last post, the cape is incredibly light. I'll skip further explanation the product, as it is described in detail here.

So how did it work? I must report that I was wet and cold when I got home. This does not, however, diminish my esteem for this product. For two reasons:

First, let's just say that I picked the ideal conditions to test this thing. On Feb. 1 Savannah received 1.20 inches of rain and I think most of it fell during my ride home. Not only was I hit by rain from above, plenty of water was splashing up from below. The streets were subject to significant "ponding," as our local weather forecasters like to say. In some places, such as the intersection of Habersham Street and Victory Drive, the water was up to my bike's rims. I'm running 26 x 2.1 Continental Town & Country tires, so there's quite a bit of rubber between my rims and the road. I don't think I would have remained dry if I'd ridden home vacuum sealed in a Space Bag.

Second, part of my moisture control problem was surely due to user error. The cape has fabric loops underneath. The idea is to grasp the loops and position your hands on the handlebars so that the cape forms an awning over your legs. About halfway home I discovered that slightly repositioning my hands provided more coverage. The cape does not have a hood. And that's good. Proper adjustment at the neck would kept my shoulders and back drier. It can be adjusted at the waist, which I also neglected. A gust of wind exposed my backside momentarily. I won't let that happen again.

Another cool thing about the cape is that it is supposedly made in Oregon, which probably makes it the only non-food item I've ever owned that was manufactured in that state.

Perhaps I'll post a review after I've used the cape during a more typical rainstorm. At any rate, I can say that it performed well enough to receive my enthusiastic endorsement. Whatever that's worth.

4 comments:

beth h said...

I also own a Jackson & Gibbens cape, an old one. The reason they're so chea is that they don't seal their seams. YOU have to. Buy some Seam Seal, turn the thing inside-out and seal all the seam stitching. Then it'll be more waterproof. But yeah, it's a good bike cape.

nagle said...

Hello.

I'm a Grad Student in the Graphic Design department at SCAD. I'm working with a group on a class project that we're going to try and get picked up by SCAD for use in conjunction with their website.

Our idea is to create a website that serves as a one-stop shop for incoming and transfer students to SCAD concerning all things bicycling in Savannah. We are going to include information covering on-bike safety, local laws, places to shop, theft prevention and ways to get around town safely.

I am writing to see if you would be interested in getting interviewed, as a seasoned Savannah cyclist, for inclusion on the site. We could conduct the interview via Instant Messanger if you'd like.

Please email me if you are interested: jnagle {at} auchendesign {dot} com

Thanks!

Jon Nagle

Anonymous said...

Do you still like the cape? Thanks.
Robert

John said...

Robert:

I'm still happy withe the cape, but I haven't had another chance to use it. It's been awfully dry here. The first real rain we've had in weeks happened this week, but it came in the middle of the night.