The dhb Aeron Rain Defence Bib Shorts are an excellent pair of bibs for chilly days. The 'Rain Defence' just adds to a well fitting and comfortable pair of shorts. Rain can make riding miserable. Lycra is near to useless in cold rain so I was pleasantly surprised to find that my legs didn't freeze to useless lumps when the rain came down.
The shorts are also very well proportioned, with comfy bibs, and the pad is also excellent. While riding I experienced no bunching of material and the dense pad stayed just where it should.
Firstly, it should be noted that the name 'Rain Defence' means it will repel all but the heaviest and prolonged spells of rain. Rain will eventually get through but it will take a good deal longer than conventional Lycra, and what gets through will be significantly reduced. dhb has also used minimal stitching to help the waterproofing. This keeps your big working muscles dryer and warmer for longer. I found that rather pleasant on the chilly morning commute, especially when the heavens opened unexpectedly.
The cut is quite race orientated, coming from dhb's 'performance' fit. I found that the bib straps were tight over my shoulders when standing up, but perfectly supportive when in a riding position.
The Lycra on the legs is supportive yet not restricting, and I found that this stopped any snagging on the saddle. The legs are finished with minimal leg grippers, but because of the excellent fit, there was no upwards movement.
dhb has specced the CyTech Comp HP chamois, which features dense padding for long ride comfort. There is also an anti-bacterial cover, which I found comfortable for rides over four hours.
Aesthetically, the all-black design means that the shorts stay looking new for a long time. The minimal branding is also a subtle touch from dhb, meaning that the shorts will complement any jersey.
They fit perfectly and do what they claim very well too – at half the price of many, these are a real winner
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road.cc test report
Make and model: dhb Aeron Rain Defence Bib Shorts
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?
dhb says: "A high performance short designed to provide additional protection in changeable weather conditions."
For British cyclists then, this could be an all-year purchase. dhb has released it for the autumn as part of a full Rain Defence range. Firstly, they are correct about these being a high performance pair of bibs. They fit incredibly well. The protection in changeable conditions is also spot on, with all but the heaviest and prolonged rainfall being kept out.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
4% Other Fibres
Top Features of the dhb Aeron Rain Defence Bib Shorts
dhb Performance level kit
Breathable, water resistant fabric
Minimal seaming for additional water protection
CyTech Comp HP chamois suitable for 6+ hours in the saddle
Mesh back panel for ventilation and breathability
Shaped leg elastic with silicone particle gripper
The minimal stitching really helps to keep out water.
Rain gets through eventually, but only if it is prolonged and heavy. The rest of the time is spent in perfect dryness.
So far, I've remembered to not tumble-dry these. Thus, they have retained their weather-proofing.
Good length, perfect pad placement and supportive straps.
Not as light as your summer shorts, but these are designed to be a little more rugged.
The pad is nicely dense for long rides and has a soft cover. The straps feel tight when stood up but are perfect when in a riding position.
Half the price of some of its rivals.
How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?
Wash on cool, like all kit these days, and don't tumble dry. Stick to this and they'll stay perfect for ages.
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Really well, in terms of rain-repelling and comfort.
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The water just runs off. That and the styling is reserved so these will go with all your other kit.
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
If I'm being ridiculously picky, the thickness of the material meant that when the sun shone, they got a little warm. Not going to have that problem many times though.
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
Only let down by the fact that tumble drying will take away the rain defence. The rest is excellent quality for good value.
About the tester
I usually ride: Rose Xeon RS My best bike is:
I've been riding for: 5-10 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo-cross, commuting, club rides, general fitness riding, I specialise in the cafe ride!
Son of a Marathon runner, Nephew of a National 24hr Champion, the racing genetics have completely passed him by. Liam spends his time plodding his way through cyclocross races, very busy not winning. As an advocate for perfectly clean chains, he can be found cleaning his bike instead of training. A shop mechanic, Liam has many helpful skills, such as being able to identify 'cross tubs by the tread pattern alone. If you bump into him, he'll probably be eating.