Homegrown British brand Morvelo's Stealth Stormshield Bib Knickers are a robust and versatile pair of three-quarter-length tights.
I'm a big fan of three-quarter-lengths for riding off-road. The small bit of skin exposed to the elements just helps to keep you slightly cooler at the lower speeds of cyclo-cross where wind chill isn't such a factor as it can be out on the road. Similarly, the length sits well underneath a baggy pair of shorts and kneepads when out on a mountain bike.
The Stormshields are constructed from Morvelo's midweight water- and wind-resistant Stormshield material, with a Miti SuperRoubaix fleece lining. This combination leads to a garment that feels like a quality item the moment you pull it on.
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The shoulder straps are wide and sit well on your shoulders and are made from a mesh material that keeps the top of your back and shoulders from getting too sweaty when pushing hard. The leg grippers are a thinner Lycra fabric, and could have done with being a smidge tighter on the calf for me. I have quite skinny legs and it just felt like if they'd been a tiny bit tighter the grippers would have sat in place better on my legs. It's a very minor niggle though.
The pad is an Italian Dolomiti dual-layer chamois, according to Morvelo, and it was very comfortable, regardless of what saddle I was sitting on or what discipline I was riding. It's constructed from two different layers of high density memory foam, and is a bit thicker than some I've tried. Often I don't get on with thick pads, but this one is great.
Out on the bike, the fabric's water and wind resistance is very effective. Despite the name, I never wore the Stormshields in proper storms, but on the countless wet and windy rides I've enjoyed during the testing period they have held up admirably. The water won't bead up and roll off the material like a fully waterproof garment, but there's enough resistance to the cold, wind and damp to keep you going even for a few hours. The flatlock stitching has put up with plenty of use and abuse during cross racing, commutes and Welsh trail centre days without complaint.
> Prefer longs? Check out our guide to the best bib tights and trousers
Price-wise, I think the Stormshields are pretty reasonable. They're a quality bit of kit and feel like they'll last for years, and as such I think £100 isn't out of turn when you compare them with similar high-quality offerings, such as Sugoi's £119.99 RS SubZeros. And at the time of writing the Stormshields are reduced to £75.
Overall, my experience with the Morvelo Stormshields has been great. They are a versatile, warm pair of three-quarter-length tights that should last you plenty of seasons of crappy weather to come.
Robust, versatile and warm three-quarter-length tights that are built for British weather
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Make and model: Morvelo Stealth Men's Stormshield Bib Knickers
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?
Morvelo says: "The legendary MITI SuperRoubaix fabric has been developed so that the mid-weight brushed fleece-back polyester not only keeps the heat in but the micro-fibre weave also lets the sweat evaporate. It's used to provide warmth and flexibility to our 3/4 bib shorts and our added StormShield water repellence keeps the rain out. A dual layer perforated chamois that is designed to excel on 2hr - 6hr rides. They have also been extensively tested in short and harsh Crit and Cyclocross races as well as 24hr solo MTB races so we know they are incredibly adaptable and perform to the highest standard. Created from 2 levels of high density memory foam using the latest in aircell technology to reduce pressure points, the first level provides maximum shock absorption for the hip and pelvic bones leaving the perineal area without pressure for additional comfort. The second level of perforated foam allows for supreme ventilation and moisture management. The chamois is then covered with a soft but resilient outer layer.
"Our Printed Gripper Elastic (PGE) keeps a firm yet gentle grip around the calves and the brushed fleece bib straps provide maximum warmth whilst keeping everything in it's place. Not matter what you ride, our ThermoActive shorts will keep you rolling in comfort throughout the cooler months."
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Thermal x Water Repellent x Windproof
Miti SuperRoubaix fleece backed lycra
StormShield Water Repellence
Italian Dolomiti dual layer chamois
Brushed fleece-back straps for maximum insulation
Flat lock stitching
Heat seal label
Again from Morvelo
Panelled construction for superior fit
Pedal Panel behind the knee removes the central rear seam for pedalling efficiency
Rubberised Morvelo seam tab
Handmade in Europe from Italian fabrics
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How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The fit and the quality feel.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
The Lycra calf grippers were not quite tight enough.
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
Use this box to explain your score
Generally when I give something an 8 it's because I have enjoyed using it, and I would be happy if I'd bought it myself. This pretty neatly sums up my feelings for these bibs. They're not a 9 because they didn't excel, or actively impress me at any point – as a 9 should. They fit me right, and just did what they said on the label with no fuss.
Age: 23 Height: 182cm Weight: 75kg
I usually ride: Kinesis Pro6 My best bike is: The first steel bike I made
I've been riding for: 10-20 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, cyclo-cross, commuting, club rides, sportives, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, mountain biking
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