Saturday, 27 June 2009

Gear review - Altura Airstream Windproof shell

Altura make an extensive range of clothing for a variety of cycling activities. This jacket is part of their Airstream range and is a general purpose cool weather long sleeve top that is windproof at the front and breatheable at the back. The windproof material is polyester in yellow and the breathable back, side and rear of sleeves is in black polyester fleece with spandex. There are three rear pockets and a full length zip at the front with a fleece lined collar. It is available in a radiant yellow or a more subdued blue.

Like most shells, the fit should be close fitting and the Altura Airstream works well in this respect and the stretchy back gives a snug feel. When I first put this jacket on, I liked the feel of it as the front feels light and airy and the back feels warm and cosy. Out on the road, the jacket performs well in medium temperatures. It would be too lightweight for really cold weather unless working hard. Slower riders will find it most suitable as a three season jacket. The arm length is generous and allows for stretching out over the front of a bike. The yellow jacket provides excellent hi-viz capability from the front but the back of the jacket is all black and very little of the yellow is seen from the rear - just the shouders. Wearing a bright rucksack helps but also decreases breatheability.

I've had this jacket for a few months now. I always look forward to putting it on for the morning ride. When it's a bit chilly for bare arms, this jacket does the trick without being too warm. With the pockets at the back also being made of fleece, it keeps the lower back warm too.

Altura have a large range of clothing with models that change frequently. I checked a few online stores and there appears to be limited availability in some shops but I did find all sizes and colours available in others.

Likes: Excellent close fit, warm feel, wind resistance.
Dislikes: No zip pocket, no silicone hem grippers, could be slightly longer at the back. Lack of hi-viz from rear.
Rating: 4/5

Price: SRP £45

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i think you should review some rapha jackets,