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There's nothing flashy about dhb's Turbulence jacket, but this windproof shell from Wiggle's in-house clothing brand ticks all the essential boxes for the category, and has a few nice additional touches that set it apart.
This is a snug-fitting windproof, so if you've put on a bit of winter lard, it's time to get off the couch and shed it. I'm 178cm and 88kg, and our size L sample fits me fine round the chest, shoulders and hips, but is a bit, ahem, snug round the tummy. Time to cut down on the pies and up the milage, then.
The fabric is a tightly-woven ripstop nylon that very thoroughly shuts out the chill. Mesh sections under the arms alleviate that 'boil-in-the-bag cyclist' feeling and the back is also vented to let the sweat escape.
All-nylon garments can be harsh on softer bits of flesh so there's a very light fleece lining at the neck to eliminate irritation, and the neck hem has a very slight curve so it's higher at the back. The broad elastic at the cuffs needs to be over a jersey or glove cuff to seal out the wind as it it's roomy, at least round my skinny wrists.
The lower hem has a dropped tail and is lightly elasticated; just enough to keep it in place, but not so much that it rides up to your waist. That's impressive. I feel like I've spent my entire riding life swearing at rain jackets for riding up at the waist because of elasticated hems and wondering if anyone who chose that feature had ever actually ridden in their product. Someone at DHB clearly takes ride-testing seriously, because the elastic tension here is spot on. Chapeau!
The Turbulence has a few flashes of reflective as a nod to night-time visibility, but it's clear that 7pm winter commuting is not its main intended use; dhb's imaginatively-named Waterproof Commuter Jacket fills that role.
But the Turbulence does pack down fairly small. It'll easily stuff into a jersey pocket, so you can start a ride wearing it and stow it when things warm up.
You can roll it into its own back pocket, too, though that doesn't get it down to the minimum possible size as the pocket's fairly roomy. It also has a tiny internal pocket for your keys and change.
If you do get caught in the wain, water initially beads off the fabric, which seems to have some sort of DWR coating (Durable Water Repellent), but it's not properly waterproof and the seams aren't taped so you do get wet eventually. DHB describes it as 'light shower proof' and that's about right.
There is a women's version of the Turbulence, as there is of almost all DHB's jackets. We haven't tested it, but browsing the website one female rider remarked that it'd be nice if there were some completely non-girly colour options and in fact could she please have a women's jacket in the same teal as the men.
That niggle aside, the Turbulence is spot on for current conditions and will get you through cold mornings till the weather gets properly summery.
Packable lightweight windproof that's hard to fault for the money.
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Make and model: dhb AW13 Turbulence Windproof Jacket
Size tested: Large, Blue/Grey
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?
Speed through the chilly winter air in style and comfort. The Turbulence Jacket offers effective windchill defence with a slim footprint and all the features you need out on the bike; the perfect outer layer for cool, crisp Autumn/Winter road rides.
Forget the Windchill Factor
The dhb Turbulence Jacket was developed to keep you warm and comfortable as you cycle through the cold, frosty Autumn/Winter months. Whether it's winter sportive training or a year-round cycle commute, the Turbulence Jacket takes care of the Windchill factor, so you can focus on your ride.
The lightweight, durable nylon microfibre shell forms a barrier against the chilly winds, light rain and road spray, helping you maintain your core temperature even when the thermometer approaches zero. The high collar, drop tail and elasticated cuffs offer all the coverage you need to speed through the crisp winter air in style and comfort.
Keep your cool on the climbs
When your route starts to climb, so does your temperature. The Turbulence Jacket features a breathable shell to let heat and moisture escape from within, and generous mesh under arm panels for additional ventilation, so you can keep your cool on the way up the climb and stay warm on the fast descent back down.
Aerodynamic Slim Fit
The Turbulence jacket is built for a slim fit in the cycling position. The drop tail keeps your lower back fully covered while your back is curved to reach the drops, and the generous sleeve length keeps your wrists covered with your arms extended on the hoods.
The fit is designed to contour with your body for an aerodynamic fit and minimal excess fabric, helping you glide the air without flapping.
A Quality Finish
With custom dhb branded hem binding, YKK zips and durable reflective trim, the Turbulence Jacket is finished to the highest standard. A spacious rear pocket with zip closure offers secure storage of your multi-tool, CO2 cartridge, spare tube and energy bar, everything you need to keep moving.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Lightweight Windproof nylon outer fabric for breathable windchill and light rain protection
Slim fit for an aerodynamic profile with minimal excess fabric
Mesh underarm panels for additional ventilation and moisture transfer
Rear zipped pocket for storing your ride essentials securely
Reflective details for eye-catching visuals in low light conditions
Elasticated cuffs to seal out the elements and provide a tight interface with your gloves
Drop tail for extended coverage in the road cycling position, and protection from road spray
High Fleece lined collar for comfortable, abrasion free neck coverage
Zip garage at collar to eliminate scratching
Custom dhb branded hem binding
Refined, understated dhb styling
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Snug, non-flapping fit; cut, shape and detailing.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes.
Would you consider buying the product? Yes.
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes.
Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?
DHB's quality and especially fit and design has come on in leaps and bounds in the last couple of years. It's gone from being Wiggle's cheap and cheerful house brand to a clothing line that can hold its head high among substantially more expensive company.
The turbulence is no exception. This could easily be a £60 or £70 windproof.
It's very much a go-faster jacket, most suitable for riders in a hurry. This a jacket for training and riding fast in, not for pootling to the shops.
Age: 46 Height: 5ft 11in Weight: 85kg
I usually ride: Scapin Style My best bike is:
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: commuting, touring, club rides, general fitness riding,
John has been writing about bikes and cycling for over 30 years since discovering that people were mug enough to pay him for it rather than expecting him to do an honest day's work.
He was heavily involved in the mountain bike boom of the late 1980s as a racer, team manager and race promoter, and that led to writing for Mountain Biking UK magazine shortly after its inception. He got the gig by phoning up the editor and telling him the magazine was rubbish and he could do better. Rather than telling him to get lost, MBUK editor Tym Manley called John’s bluff and the rest is history.
Since then he has worked on MTB Pro magazine and was editor of Maximum Mountain Bike and Australian Mountain Bike magazines, before switching to the web in 2000 to work for CyclingNews.com. Along with road.cc founder Tony Farrelly, John was on the launch team for BikeRadar.com and subsequently became editor in chief of Future Publishing’s group of cycling magazines and websites, including Cycling Plus, MBUK, What Mountain Bike and Procycling.
John has also written for Cyclist magazine, edited the BikeMagic website and was founding editor of TotalWomensCycling.com before handing over to someone far more representative of the site's main audience.
He joined road.cc in 2013. He lives in Cambridge where the lack of hills is more than made up for by the headwinds.