Pactimo's Alpine RFLX Thermal bibs are a good cold-weather option for drier days. They're not the warmest and there's no surface treatment to repel rain, but they're comfortable and well made with some useful visibility features.
The flatlocked seams and Miti® Lombardia stretch fabric, with its brushed internal finish, make these bibs nice and cosy from the off. The large stirrups mean they don't ride up at the bottom, although I sometimes found them a bit flappy round the ankles at speed. Each ankle has a decent slab of Plastotex Pixel® reflective Thermal fabric which does a great job of catching headlights after dark. There's one on the thigh, too, but since these are US-designed it's really on the wrong leg for UK roads.
The pad, a CyTech Elastic Interface Liege Carbonium, is good, especially for shorter trips. The padding is comfortable and all in the right places; it's excellent for rides of a couple of hours; beyond that I could have done with something a bit more heavy duty at times.
The fabric is breathable enough that you can wear these bibs on a fairly mild day and not cook, but the flip side of that is that when it gets really cold you'll start to feel it. Having said that, they're good to around freezing. Let's assume you have some deep winter tights somewhere. Or you just don't go out when it's properly brass monkeys. You'll get a good few months' use out of these each year, anyway. They've worn well and survived multiple washes without incident; they should last just fine.
At £115 these are on a par with the likes of Castelli and Sportful's mid-range offerings. You can spend a lot more on bibs, and you can get similarly-specced tights from the likes of dhb for a good deal less. For the money they're a decent pair of tights, but the performance isn't exceptional and it's a pity they don't do a UK-road-friendly version with the thigh reflective on the other side.
Good bib tights for the in-between days with useful reflective detailing if you're out after dark
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Make and model: Pactimo Alpine RLFX Thermal Bib Tights
Size tested: XL
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?
Winter is coming and the days are getting shorter and darker. Make sure you stay warm and visible in Pactimo's Alpine RFLX™ Thermal Bib Tights. The left-side thigh strip and large, rear calf panels are designed with RFLX™ reflective fabric from Plastotex, an innovative Italian manufacturer. This revolutionary fabric has refractive elements impregnated directly into the cloth that 'explode' with brightness when illuminated by exposure from direct light, such as a car's headlights.
Italian Miti® Lombardia stretch fabric, featured throughout the rest of the tight, will be soft and cozy against your skin. Due to its high-performing breathability, it not only keeps you warm and dry, but prevents you from over-heating as you put in those winter miles. Built with Pactimo's signature Silhouette™ Engineering, these tights use innovative articulation and a unique strap and front panel design to allow you to enjoy longer rides with less material bunching, chaffing and discomfort. The Alpine RFLX Thermal bibs feature CyTech's Elastic Interface™ Liege Carbonium chamois for exceptional freedom of movement and comfort.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Designed with Silhouette™ Engineering
CyTech's Elastic Interface™ Liege Carbonium chamois
Italian Miti® Lombardia stretch fabric
Plastotex Pixel® Thermal fabric
YKK Semi-auto locking ankle zippers
Breathable mesh uppers
100% flatlock stitching
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
They're good bibs for cold and dry days.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Comfortable, good reflectives on the ankles.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The pad is good rather than great, stirrups can be a bit flappy at speed.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Maybe
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Maybe
Age: 42 Height: 190cm Weight: 100kg
I usually ride: whatever I'm testing... My best bike is: Kinesis Tripster ATR
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mtb, Mountain Bike Bog Snorkelling, track
Dave is a founding father of road.cc, having previously worked on Cycling Plus and What Mountain Bike magazines back in the day. He also writes about e-bikes for our sister publication ebiketips. He's won three mountain bike bog snorkelling World Championships, and races at the back of the third cats.