Dhb’s Finchdean is a shapely and beautifully tailored jersey cum jacket for temperatures between -2 and +12 degrees so ideally suited for cold, early season rides. However, for all its considerable charm you’ll need to stash a waterproof shell in one of the three rear pockets to keep you singing in the rain, sizing excludes smaller riders and its at the absolute limit of what I’d be prepared to pay for a Polyester derived garment.
Marketed as a windproof jersey, thanks to sophisticated panelling and quality cut it feels really close while still being quite generous-I usually struggle with medium Jerseys around the shoulders but fit felt just right with a good quality, middleweight merino base layer. Riders who are particularly sensitive to cold might just be able to sneak a jersey beneath, transforming it from jersey to training jacket without losing any of the sculpted fit. Dhb has always impressed with the standard of detailing on their clothing and the Finchdean doesn’t disappoint.
There’s the increasing obligatory MP3/mobile phone breast pocket, three traditional, if generous rear (four if you count the zippered middle which is large enough to swallow a typical compact camera or wallet) although the rubberised zip-tags can be a touch fiddly wearing heavier weight winter gloves-especially on the fly. Reflective logo and subtle Italian tricolour break up the really sharp blue/black livery, incorporating some subtle safety to boot.
Chasing through the seasonally chill and very exposed lanes,bracing winds couldn’t penetrate the material-even around the zipper, thanks to a well- insulated internal flap. A fleece-lined collar not only provides further insulation but is cut to eliminate annoying contact with most helmets.
Snug cuffs and sensibly long cut completes the package and slams the door on chill-regardless of how low your bike’s cockpit. Breathable stretch panelling brings notable improvements over the 2008 model’s moisture management but riding through an hour’s steady rainfall without a race cape will still leave you feeling soggy.
Superbly cut jersey for cold, dry days but limited sizes will disappoint smaller riders.
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road.cc test report
Make and model: dhb Finchdean windproof jersey
Size tested: M
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?
"The Finchdean range – top performance kit which looks good and feels great"
This jerseys boasts all the great design features of the original dhb Finchdean Long Sleeve garment with the added benefit of innovative panelling using Windtex fabric. The triple-layered Windtex membrane is both wind and water resistant and offers great thermal insulation while remaining highly breathable so it works to keep the body at a controlled temperature. Thermal stretch inserts on the side panels enhance this. There’s no shortage of pocket space with three rear and a zip chest pocket for an MP3 player"
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
90% Polyester (Windtex) 10% Spandex (panels) three open top elasticated rear pockets, one zippered for valuables,zipped breast MP3/ mobile phone pocket.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
There's no doubt the Finchdean (Named after a small village the Wiggle riders regularly pass through) is a very competent jersey cum jacket for cooler season's training duties with superb cut and generally good design. It insulates against wind chill completely without leaving the rider feeling boiled in the bag thanks to more sophisticated polyester material. However, it is only water resistant-fine in light, showery conditions but a race-shell jacket is a good idea for longer rides and more challenging weather.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
Great cut, laden with nice, practical design features
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
Sizing discriminates against smaller riders and it's at the upper limit of what I'd be prepared to pay for a garment derived from Polyester.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Possibly
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes, but competition's pretty tough at this end of the market
About the tester
Age: 36 Height: 1m 81 Weight: 70 kilos
I usually ride: Rough Stuff Tourer Based around 4130 Univega mtb Frameset My best bike is: 1955 Holdsworth Road Path and several others including cross & traditional road
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Experienced
I regularly do the following types of riding: cyclo cross, commuting, touring, fixed/singlespeed, mtb,
Shaun Audane is a freelance writer/product tester with over twenty-eight years riding experience, the last twelve (120,000 miles) spent putting bikes and kit through their paces for a variety of publications. Previous generations of his family worked at manufacturing's sharp end, thus Shaun can weld, has a sound understanding of frame building practice and a preference for steel or titanium framesets.
Citing Richard Ballantine and an Au pair as his earliest cycling influences, he is presently writing a cycling book with particular focus upon women, families and disabled audiences (Having been a registered care manager and coached children at Herne Hill Velodrome in earlier careers)