Whether you are riding the latest carbon fiber bicycle or a garage sale special, when you’re riding in colder temperatures you won’t perform well without the proper cycling kit. Finding the right combination of warmth and breathability is essential which brings us to the Isadore cycling kit in this review. We’ll be looking at three items specifically: the Signature Winter Bib Shorts, Echelon Long Sleeve Jersey and the Echelon Gilet. If you’re not familiar with Isadore, it’s a Slovakia based cycling apparel developed by professional cyclists brothers and are well known for their premium quality, commitment to sustainability and modern designs.
The Isadore Signature Winter Bib Shorts, Echelon Long Sleeve and Echelon Gilet combine sleek minimalist aesthetics with high performance materials and construction.
The Signature Winter Bib Shorts retails for $250 and was developed to fill the gap between winter tights and summer bib shorts. The bib shorts combine a seamless 4D chamois with a NanoSphere surface finish and waterproof membrane for protection from the elements. The Echelon Long Sleeve Jersey has a retail price of $225 and is a versatile long sleeve jersey that can be worn on its own or layered for colder days. The jersey features a clean and minimal aesthetics with nearly no visible branding and a racefit with lycra construction. Finally, the Echelon Gilet is a featherweight cycling gilet that retails for $145. The gilet has a wind resistance construction and form fitting profile that can easily be stored in a jersey pocket. Together, this cycling kit is designed to keep you warm yet maintain breathability and minimize bulk for high-intensity workouts.
|Signature Winter Bib Shorts||Echelon LS Jersey||Echelon Gilet|
|Likes||+ Large reflective panels keep you visible in low light|
+ Great combination of warmth and breathability
|+ Comfortable yet second-skin like fit |
+ Attractive minimalist aesthetics instead of heavy branding
|+ Compact and pack-able design|
+ Dual zippers for easy temperature control
|Dislikes||– Only available in black||– Racefit will make you second guess cheat days||– Only available in black|
|Where to Buy (US)||Isadore||Isadore||Isadore|
With Isadore’s commitment to sustainability, it shouldn’t come as a surprise that all the items are shipped in compostable plastic bags.
SIGNATURE WINTER BIB SHORTS
Isadore developed the Signature Winter Bib Shorts to fill the gap between winter tights and summer bibshorts. Although it may seem like wearing bib shorts on a cold day seems odd, the Signature Winter Bib Shorts are perfect for high-intensity workouts on cooler days without worrying about overheating. Isadore rates the bib shorts temperature range to be +5 to +20 Celsius (41-68 Fahrenheit) which we found to be quite accurate. On colder days the bib shorts can be combined with leg warmers and base layers for extra warmth or the bib shorts can be worn on their own in higher temperatures. Warmth is achieved by incorporating brushed inner material with reinforced waterproof panels. The exterior finish also features their NanoSphere surface finish that allows dirt and grime to simply wipe off.
We found the size guide to be accurate as the medium size fit our 6’1” 165lb test rider well – unlike the Ale Klimatik which required sizing up. The multi-panel construction and use of elastic materials give the bib shorts a race-fit that contours around you. Even the Italian made chamois is preshaped with a seamless design that doesn’t inhibit your motion or add any bulk. The chamois has a multi-layer construction that we found provided comfort on the saddle for quick interval rides and multi-hour rides. Although the retail price is expensive, the Signature Winter Bib Shorts the premium construction and versatility to be used throughout the year. We also appreciated details such as the large reflective panels that ensure you remain visible despite the all black finish.
ECHELON LONG SLEEVE JERSEY
The Echelon Long Sleeve jersey combines the warmth of a long sleeve jersey with a race-fit to optimize aerodynamic performance. Isadore offers the jersey in a number of colors from the attractive dark red Zinfandel shown here to more subtle Anthracite (dark gray) and Tradewinds (off-white) color schemes. Visually the Echelon Long Sleeve looks quite similar to the Signature Long Sleeve with it’s solid color scheme and minimalist aesthetics. Branding is limited to a small Isadore logo on the side which is even less than minimal kits like the Gore C5 Thermo. To optimize the fit, the long sleeve jersey combines two types of Lycra: a perforated breathable material and a second soft material. The breathable material is placed along the side panels to allow for temperature regulation while the other material finishes the front and rear panels.
You’ll want to second guess cheat days as the Echelon Long Sleeve Jersey has a racefit that doesn’t leave much to the imagination. Although the jersey looks like it’s painted on, the stretchable material is surprisingly comfortable with no pressure points or restrictions. The medium size was a perfect fit for our 6’1” 165lb rider and can even accommodate base layers underneath it on colder days. It can also easily be worn even beyond the -5 to 10 Celsius (23-50 Fahrenheit) range Isadore specifies on its own or with additional layers. As with other Isadore products there are thoughtful details such as zipper garages, reflective details on the cuff/hem and even an inner loop to route headphone cables through. The large three pockets are also well constructed and fairly tall to accommodate longer items.
Whether you call it a gilet or a vest, it’s an essential part of a cycling kit that can protect your core from cold descents or wind chill. The Echelon Gilet follows the same Echelon philosophy of understated design and high performance construction. It’s an extremely light gilet that can be packed away in a jersey pocket when it isn’t needed. Isadore describes the material as a wind resistance Swiss three layer membrane fabric. It’s combined with stretchable Italian mesh material on the rear and sides to achieve a tailored fit. Dual adjustable full-length zippers on the front allow for easy temperature modulation.
As with the other products, the medium size fit our 6’1” 165lb rider well and had racefit. The gilet easily fits over multiple layers such as the long sleeve jersey and even a base layer thanks to the stretchable fabrics. As with the other Isadore products, premium details such as reflective edging, color-coated zipper pulls and the understated design really set the Echelon Gilet apart from other products on the market. Even though the gilet feels paper thin, the wind resistance front panel keeps your core protected from wind chill. Thanks to the packable design, it’s ideal for climbing on colder days as you can remove it for climbs and then put it on for the fast descents.
Overall, we found the Isadore Signature Winter Bib Shorts and Echelon items to be well made and offer impressive breathability. It’s a flexible cycling kit that can easily be layered up or down to accommodate shoulder season rides or even cooler morning rides. We found the sizing for all the items to be accurate to the sizing guides and surprisingly comfortable despite the racefit. The multipanel construction and use of elastic materials along the side panels allow them to easily stretch and contour around your body without inhibiting your range of motion or creating pressure points. Premium details can be found throughout the kits from the reflective detailing, zipper garages to the minimalist design language. If you’re looking for shoulder season or colder weather cycling apparel that won’t get in the way of high-intensity workouts or slow you down then we’d recommend the Signature Winter Bib Shorts, Echelon Long Sleeve and Echelon Gilet.
Disclaimer: The product for this review was provided by Isadore. The views expressed on this website are solely those of the authors and are here to help people make an informed choice before a purchase. The authors or the blog itself does not get any monetary compensation from the product manufacturer or third-party websites/vendor links that are posted here.