When it comes to niche products, not many come close to the Outeredge Full Zip tights for sheer obscurity. These tights are designed specifically for warming up for cross and mountain bike races where a fast start is crucial. By incorporating two zips running the full length of each leg, these can be whipped off in literally 5 seconds, for minimal start line faff.
Constructed from a heavy fleece lined material, these things are the mutt's proverbials when pre-riding courses in the depths of winter. They are thick enough that whilst not waterproof, it takes a good soaking for any water to seep through the material. Wearing these as part of your warm-up or course pre-ride also has the added benefit that you can keep your kit nice and clean for the start line – you can take satisfaction that you at least look pro if nothing else.
When it comes to fit, the Outeredges are a tad on the small side compared to the average. I usually take a Medium when it comes to bib tights but found the waist to be especially narrow and would have preferred a Large. Given you're only likely to be spending up to an hour in them at any one time, unsightly creases aren't such a problem so it's worth sizing up.
The waist comes up quite high so they'll easily cover your backside from the cold and mud. Unfortunately, the waist is cut level front to back so there's quite a bit of material to get in the way when you're bent over riding. As a set of tights for everyday riding, these are perhaps not the best choice as a result of this crude fit, but for their intended purpose, this isn't such an issue.
The zips are some reassuringly chunky models from YKK and are stout enough to survive even the fiercest tugging from a frantic rider late for a start. Mud has proven no problem for them either as they just plough through it as though it wasn't there and the zip tags are long enough to be easy to handle with thick gloves on.
The downside to such stout zips is that they're not the most comfortable things whilst riding. For a warm-up though, they're just fine.
In addition to race warm-ups, I also found them useful for those first few chilly minutes on the turbo trainer in a cold garage. Once warm, you can easily strip them off without even having to get off the trainer and breaking your rhythm.
At £35, the price is just right for something that you'll not put too many hours into, but that will vastly improve your start line experience. Go to any cross race and you're likely to see a handful of these which speaks volumes for their suitability for that discipline. As far as other options go, Zepnat are the only other manufacturer I know of which offers a similar product at a similar price.
Most racers will have experienced the start line scenario where they're either shivering trying to stay warm, or frantically trying to get their leg warmers over their shoes. For not very much money, the Outeredge full zip tights provide a solution to both of these cases.
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road.cc test report
Make and model: Outeredge Full zip warm up tights
Size tested: Black, 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?
For cross or mountain bike racers looking to stay warm on the start line. They can be easily taken off and tossed to a helper moments before the gun goes off.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
Fleece lined for great comfort
Full length zip for easy off after warm up
Excellent Wicking effect for stay dry warmt
From the material itself to the zips, this is a stout piece of kit which should survive a good measure of tugging and pulling.
Very warm in use and can be stripped off in seconds
See quality of construction
They loose out in the comfort stakes due to their basic cut and inflexible zips. For a typical warm-up though, they aren't going to cause a problem
Although you're not likely to be wearing them for too long, they're relatively cheap and do the job they're intended for
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? Yes
Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes
About the tester
Age: 20 Height: 190cm Weight: 70kg
I usually ride: Giant TCR Advanced 2 My best bike is: Canyon Ultimate CF7
I've been riding for: Under 5 years I ride: Every day I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, sportives, mtb,
For 5 years, racing was my life and I went all the way from a newbie bonking after 40 miles, to a full-timer plying my trade on the Belgian kermesse scene. Unfortunately, the pro dream wasn't meant to be and these days, you're more likely to find me bimbling about country lanes and sleeping in a bush on the side of the road.