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review

Specialized RBX Adventure Over-Shorts

8
£75.00

VERDICT:

8
10
Good quality baggy shorts that work well with bibs; comfy and neutrally styled, they're good on and off the bike
Good looking
Comfortable
Hardwearing fabric
Rear pockets are a bit small
Mesh inner pockets can be fragile
Weight: 
349g

At road.cc every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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The Specialized RBX Adventure Over-Shorts are good quality touring/adventure shorts that are ideal for riding and general larking about. They're comfy on the bike, neutrally styled off it, and work well with Lycra.

These shorts are a fairly classic length and style: with an 11in inseam they sit just above the knee, and they're constructed from a twill-weave cotton/nylon fabric that has 8% Spandex in the mix for a bit of stretch.

> Buy these online here

There's a seat panel that stops all the seams meeting where you're sitting on the saddle, and the leg hems are welded rather than sewn so they don't catch or rub on your legs when riding.

2020 Specialized RBX Adventure Shorts - logo.jpg

There are loops for a belt, four pockets in the usual layout, and a zipped valuables pocket at the front too.

2020 Specialized RBX Adventure Shorts - zip pocket.jpg

A strip of reflective is added inside each leg which you can expose by turning up the hem.

There's nothing ground-breaking here, but the shorts are very nicely made, and they're comfortable on the bike. Sometimes you don't want the Lycra look, but you do want the comfort of a proper pad, and these shorts work really well over a lightweight pair of bibs; in fact I found them to work especially well with some shorts designed for indoor training. They don't bunch up or rub and they're comfortable for a good few hours in the saddle.

2020 Specialized RBX Adventure Shorts - detail.jpg

All the pockets are decent, though both front and back could be improved in my opinion. The front pockets use a mesh inner which I've always found to be less durable than a full fabric inner, although it does offer a bit more venting. The rear pockets are plenty wide, but for me could do with being a touch deeper.

2020 Specialized RBX Adventure Shorts - back pocket.jpg

All that being said, I didn't really have any issues during testing. There's enough space for your phone and your wallet if you're off to the shops, and you can lob snacks in them for longer rides if you want to.

2020 Specialized RBX Adventure Shorts - front pocket.jpg

The twill fabric has lasted well during testing, and they're easy to care for, coming up like new from a standard 40°C wash.

At £75 they're not cheap: Endura's excellent Hummvee shorts are £60, and they come with a padded liner included. You can pay much more, though: Chrome's Folsom shorts, for example, are £120. The RBX Adventure Over-Shorts feel like a good quality garment that'll get plenty of use, so you'll get your money's worth.

> Buyer’s Guide: The best casual cycling commuter wear

All in all, these have become one of my favourite pairs for general use, and I've worn them out on the bike plenty too. If you're looking for a pair of shorts to add to the wardrobe for both on- and off-bike use then you could do a lot worse than these.

Verdict

Good quality baggy shorts that work well with bibs; comfy and neutrally styled, they're good on and off the bike

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Specialized RBX Adventure Over-Shorts

Size tested: Large/36in

Tell us what the product is for

Specialized says, "Style is in the eye of the beholder, and all who behold the new RBX ADV Over-shorts will fall in love with their style – the twill weave fabric is tough and stylish while the 11' inseam (size 34 waist) falls just above the knee for a casual, athletic look."

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Specialized lists:

Twill-weave fabric is durable and casual-looking, providing a technical advantage on any Adventure.

Two rear pockets, two front pockets and a secure front pocket provide ample room for carrying all your cargo on the ride.

11" inseam (size 34 waist) falls above the knee, allowing plenty of room to run pads.

Fabric Content: 50% Cotton, 42% Nylon, 8% Spandex

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
9/10

Good quality fabric, durable stitched seams, welded hems, reinforcement stitching on pocket corners: all good.

Rate the product for performance:
 
8/10

Very comfy on and off the bike, work well with Lycra underneath.

Rate the product for durability:
 
7/10

Main fabric isn't heavy but it is resistant to snags. Mesh pocket liners would likely be the first thing to go.

Rate the product for fit:
 
8/10

They're cut well for riding and not riding.

Rate the product for sizing:
 
8/10

I was wearing a 36, they fitted well, they were better with a belt off the bike. I'm normally between a 34 and a 36 depending on the current pies-to-miles ratio. A 34 might have been a bit snug right now  1

Rate the product for weight:
 
8/10

Pitched about right.

Rate the product for comfort:
 
8/10

Nice and comfy on and off the bike.

Rate the product for value:
 
6/10

Decent value – a little more than some, a lot less than others; £75 is a fair whack for a pair of shorts but you'll get plenty of wear out of them.

How easy is the product to care for? How did it respond to being washed?

Washed on 40° cycle with no problems.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

Very well.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Comfy, neutral styling, well made.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

The pockets weren't quite there for me.

How does the price compare to that of similar products in the market, including ones recently tested on road.cc?

Endura's Hummvees are £60 with a liner; Chrome's Folsoms are £120 without. They're middle of the market.

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 overall score

They're really good casual shorts that you can ride a long way in, in comfort. They're not perfect, and £75 is a fair whack, but overall they're very good.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 47  Height: 189cm  Weight: 94kg

I usually ride: whatever I'm testing...  My best bike is: Kinesis Tripster ATR, Merida Scultura, Dward Design fixed

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, time trialling, cyclo cross, commuting, touring, 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.

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