It is a pity you can only buy these suits in the US or import them as a personal import because for a commuter or someone who has to wear a suit they are brilliant.
My Roadcrafter is plain black, and is pretty waterproof but won’t withstand a biblical deluge. However even in monsoon like conditions the worst I have had is damp hips. Those are the down sides.
The upsides are a protective, weather resistant suit that takes 15 seconds to get on and off, with boots on! The pockets are excellent – just a few too many because I can never remember which ones my keys, earplugs etc are in. The suit is genuinely all weather as in the summer, open up what the Yanks call “pit zips” (armpit ventilation) and the back zip and even sweaty London traffic in the summer with a formal suit on under the ‘Stich is pleasant enough. In the winter, a fleece or heated Jacket is essential because the ‘Stich is unlined. Touch wood, I haven’t crash tested it but the armour and abrasion resistance looks good. The Yanks rave about it’s crash resistance. I’ll take their word for it.
If you have to ride with a business suit on underneath, this suit will take some beating. I have seen the BMW coveralls and they look good but are heavily branded, seem to be lighter Cordura (not an altogether bad thing as the might stow away into a pannier a lot more easily) but crucially sacrifice ventilation for waterproofing. A sweaty suit is going to look crumpled.
Not to put too fine a point on it, I really cannot stand tin boxes, and I do not own a car so getting to Court, looking smart and presentable is a big issue for me. For years I struggled with rolling up suit trousers, puting my jacket in the top box and getting changed in the Court toilets or the lawyers rooms in Court. I Bought the ‘Stich 18 months ago and would not be without it. If the price ($800) is too much the nearest cheaper alternative is the Held City Spirit coverall at about £250 but reports say it is a good bit of kit but needs about 8 zips and velcro compared to the Aerostich’s 2, and you need to take your boots off. If you can get changed indoors, then no problem. A lot of our people here swear by Held gear. I have not got any but just about everyone else here has Held jackets. The BMW coverall looks good (£420), but way too heavily branded, and lacking ventilation, but gaining on waterproofing.
If you need to ride to work and wear a suit, I would unhesitatingly recommend the Aerostich Roadcrafter. It isn’t pretty, but it is effective, practical and leaves a business suit in good nick even after a 2 hour ride.
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