Very comfortable bib-shorts, ideal for cool weather conditions, at a fair-value price
Weight: 225g Contact: www.wiggle.co.uk
These dhb Vaeon Roubaix bib shorts are made from slightly thicker fabric than your standard summer shorts, making them perfect for end-of-season road races, cyclo-cross and sportives in cooler conditions, or just faster rides when you want to get a final few decent miles in before winter arrives.
The Vaeon range of legwear from dhb (the in-house brand of online superstore Wiggle) replaces the now-discontinued Pace range. We've previously reviewed the Pace Roubaix shorts here on road.cc and they were good, but these new Vaeon Roubaix shorts are a definite improvement.
Roubaix fabric is thicker than 'normal' Lycra. It's still smooth on the outside but slightly fleecy on the inside for warmth and comfort.
On these Vaeons, the fabric is stretchy and gives a nice close fit without being too tight. Despite the extra thickness, moisture from sweat is wicked away quickly.
These features make the Vaeon shorts very comfortable, and ideal for autumn and spring conditions – either on their own or teamed up with a pair of knee-warmers.
Here in the UK, they'll also do for those summer days when the weather is changeable. And in winter you can wear these shorts under a pair of full-length tights for even more protection from the elements.
The straps of the Vaeon Roubaix bib shorts are made from the same material as the rest of the shorts, with a mesh panel between the straps across the back to help airflow and avoid sweat building up. The cut is 'anatomical', meaning there are curved L-shaped side panels so the shorts align with the way your body bends when sitting on the bike.
The most important feature of a pair of shorts is the pad (aka the insert or chamois), and these Vaeon Roubaix bib shorts use a pad from specialist manufacturer CyTech. The male version employs the Giro pad, while the female version has the Speed pad. Both are good mid-range options with a reasonable foam thickness (thicker on the contact points where you need it most, a bit thinner where you don't) and anatomic construction to avoid chafing or rucking.
To stop the shorts riding up your legs, there are silicone grippers on the inside of the seam. Other features on these shorts include printed (and reflective) dhb logos on the rear and right-side leg panel and a little orange tab in the rear seam.
The only negative point about these shorts is the durability of the fabric. After about 300 miles, the two main contact points (where the shorts are compressed between the saddle and the rider's sit-bones) were showing signs of scuffing. To be fair, this happens to all shorts, and your correspondent's rear is on the bony side, and the saddle has an embroidered logo, but nonetheless you might expect the shorts to do more like 500 or 600 miles before the scuffs start to show.
The Vaeon Roubaix bib shorts are available in black only, and cost a penny under £43 on the Wiggle website (where, strangely, they're catogorized under 'Cycling Tights'). This isn't an absolute bargain, but it's still a fair price compared to similar quality Roubaix bib shorts from other manufacturers where you'll often be looking at £50 to £75 or more.
Very comfortable bib-shorts, ideal for cool weather conditions, at a fair-value price.
road.cc test report
Make and model: dhb Vaeon Roubaix bib short
Size tested: Medium
Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?
These cycling shorts are designed for cool-weather riding. On the Wiggle website the a brief description and highlights are as follows:
"Vaeon Roubaix leg wear uses a super soft fleecy performance fabric to offer reliable warmth through your Winter rides.
Anatomical form Fit
Lombardia 235g Roubaix Lycra fabric
Breathable and Warm
CyTech Elastic Interface Giro chamois
dhb branded elastic leg opening with silicone gripper
Reflective dhb logo on right leg and rear calf"
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
The website then goes into more detail on the Roubaix fabric:
"The fabric is made from 85% Nylon and 15% Elastane, making it a strong compressive fabric, with luxurious hand-feel. The fabric face in contact with the skin has been precision brushed to create a Roubaix finish. This means the inside is fleecy and soft to touch. These brushed fibres trap a layer of air between the fabric and skin, which acts as an insulation barrier between busy warm legs and the cold fresh air. This fabric is suited for general UK Winter conditions but not extreme cold."
Construction seems very good. All stitching is neat and tidy - especially important around leg seams, which get the most stress. The pad sits neatly in the shorts with no rucks.
These shorts are a very nice fit all round. Close-fitting without being too tight. No problems at all on a couple of 100-mile rides.
After about 300 miles, these shorts showed signs of wear on the contact points, slightly earlier than might be expected - even taking into account your correspondent's bony backside and saddle with embroidered logo.
These shorts are very comfortable indeed. No problems at all on a couple of 100-mile rides, as well as a few shorter faster rides.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Comfortable. Close fitting without being tight. Good chamois.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Not really a 'dislike', but the shorts fabric scuffed slightly earlier than might be expected on the saddle contact points.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
About the tester
I usually ride: an old Marin Alp, or an old steel classic My best bike is: an old Giant Cadex (can you see a theme here?)
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: A few times a week I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: touring, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding,