Leave saddle sores in the dust with the Progetto X2 chamois.
Ernest Shackleton led his infamous trip to Antarctica aboard a boat he re-named the Endurance after his family motto: Fortitudine Vincimus (by endurance we conquer). A painfully apt name as Shackleton and his crew survived twenty months at the bottom of the world, an endurance feat we never want to get near. Endurance is also an apt name for these Castelli Bib Shorts, as they're made to survive epic bike rides.
Castelli makes no secret of their design ideas when it comes to shorts. Start with the chamois and build from there. These share many design traits with the top-shelf Free Aero Bib Shorts without sticking you with the same kind of price tag. The pad you sit on is Castelli's Progetto X2 chamois. It's a three-layer stretch pad. The top layer is soft and seamless bacteriostatic polyester fabric that wicks moisture away from your body. Underneath the top layer is a perforated viscous comfort pad located directly under the sit bones and the perineum to neutralize those high-pressure areas. The final layer has variable thicknesses. It's micro-thin at the edges and increases in thickness en route to the thickest area, under your ischial tuberosities.
The legs have Giro++ grippers, just like the Free Aero Shorts. Pronounced "Giro Two" in Italy, or "Giro Due," this is a single-layer gripper that integrates gripping material into the fabric as the shorts are being made, so you can barely feel them even though they hold firmly. This technology is pretty cool; they've taken 43% Lycra content fibers and stitched them inside PowerLycra, which is 24-28% Lycra. As you stretch the material, the 43% fibers start to appear on the inside. Giro++ grippers are soft and rubbery and grip great.
The body of the shorts have been simplified. They use an eight panel design to wrap around your body. The front and rear panels are made from Action PowerLycra, which is highly abrasion resistant. The side panels are made of Energia LycraPower. It stretches more horizontally than vertically so it offers good muscle compression. The ribbed knit surface also helps a bit with aerodynamics. The bib is a Lycra mesh that's thin, breathes well, and has great stretch.
While they simplified the design a bit, there are still smart design flourishes. Four-needle flatlock stitching works great and helps maintain the compression. The rear shorts panel that moves from your glutes up your back until the mesh takes over is also a savvy touch. Because of this, they fit better, closer, and they also wick better.
The Castelli Endurance Bib Shorts come in Black, Red, and White. There are reflective inserts on the back of the leg grippers. They come in sizes from Small to XX-Large.
Stretchy Action fabric wicks moisture ultra-fast thanks to the Castelli Prosecco treatment
Energia side inserts improve the fit and aerodynamics
Giro++ single-layer grippers comfortably hold the short in place
[body] 80% nylon, 20% Lycra
road biking, long-distance riding
Castelli Men's Apparel
35-37in (88.9 - 94.0cm)
37-39in (94.0 - 99.1cm)
39-41in (99.1 - 104.1cm)
41-43in (104.1 - 109.2cm)
43-45in (109.2 - 114.3cm)
45-46in (114.3 - 116.8cm)
30-32in (76.2 - 81.3cm)
32-34in (81.3 - 86.4cm)
34-36in (86.4 - 91.4cm)
36-37.5in (91.4 - 95.3cm)
38-40in (96.5 - 101.6cm)
40-42in (101.6 - 106.7cm)
36-38in (91.4 - 96.5cm)
38-40in (96.5 - 101.6cm)
40-42in (101.6 - 106.7cm)
42-44in (106.7 - 111.8cm)
44-46in (111.8 - 116.8cm)
46-48in (116.8 - 121.9cm)
How to Measure:
For best results, take measurements over your underwear.
Measure under your arms, around the fullest part of your chest.
Measure around your natural waistline, keeping the tape a bit loose.
Measure around the fullest part of your body at the top of your legs.
Using pants that fit well, measure the crotch seam to the bottom of the leg.
Measure from the center of your back to your wrist with arms held out.
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I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
Overall these Bibs were not bad. Bicycling Magazine rated these as one of the best bibs under $160 and I have to say that the fit and chamois were comfortable, but nothing special. The chamois held up fine under my 60 and 80 mile ride I put it through. The only issue I had, which to me was the deal breaker, were the thin straps. I have broad shoulders and the straps were thin and as a result dug in to my shoulders and made it uncomfortable. If these things had wider straps like the Pearl Izumi Pro bibs or something along those lines, they would have been fine. If strap width isn't a deal breaker for you, then these are a good product at a good price.
I really enjoy riding with these bibs. The chamois is really comfortable and has held up well throughout a summer/fall of riding. The straps are comfortable and lightweight and durable enough for frequent use. The only issue which others have also pointed out is the sizing. I have worn Large bibs in the past but for these I had to get the XL size. I am 6'3" 190 lbs with a 33" waist and the XL fits me really well- the Large was far too restricting.
I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
If you're thinking of buying these because they are less expensive than the BodyPaint bibs you'll be happy with the Progetto X2 chamois. However, the reviews are correct that point out the difference in sizing. Those who own Castelli bibs feel they'll be safe in ordering the same size, like I did (mine was XL). I own two sets of the team issued bibs with the Kiss3 chamois and expected that the Endurance bibs would fit the same. They felt about 2 sizes too small. Perhaps this is why the Progetto X2 chaffed at a critical point. The front of the chamois is not as expansive as the Kiss3 and I was surprised to find the seam of the bibs and the seams of the pad uniting right in the front. Maybe a larger size would have eliminated this but I'm hesitant to try.
Otherwise, the bib material is heavier than I expected and the shoulder straps are narrower than I expected. Again, a larger size may have been more pleasant to wear. The Progetto pad is better than the Kiss3 from my perspective. Not significantly noticeable on a shorter ride though.
I have 3 other pairs - made in Croatia - they fit perfectly and are awesome bibs. These ones are made in Morocco and are 2-3 sizes too small. Unfortunately this is the second time I've we experienced this with Castelli products coming from your shop - that is the sizes being so totally off - are they outsourcing to manufacturers with shoddy quality control? It would be helpful to note where the products are made because with my beloved Castelli that does seem to be a factor.
Thanks for the quick refund though - always a pleasure to deal with CC!
I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions
I'm in between a medium and large in bibs (5'10", 160lbs) and I got the Large. They are a little big, but the mediums were a little small... so whatever, they work fine. I really like the padding, and how they are sort of a mix between an everyday bib and a more race-oriented one. I'm also a fan of the minimal design.
I gave it as a gift, but have feedback to share
I purchased these for my dad for fathers day this year and he really likes them. He has been on a few rides in them so far and says they are very comfortable and breathable. His only issue with them is the sizing, he owns a few other pairs of Castelli bibs and these are the same size, however he said the straps of the bibs seem to short, they dig into his shoulders too much. They aren't so uncomfortable in the shoulders that he would return them but just something he is trying to work with. Other than the shorter straps they do seem to fit true to size.
The basic external material and design of these is virtually identical to the Velocissimo Team shorts that I have . I think the reason why we get the "Endurance" name is because the other shorts have the mid-level KISS3 pad while these have the higher-end Progetto X2 pad. That's why you pay a $20 premium for these. Whether the more advanced pad offers greater comfort on longer rides I haven't yet been able to determine--I wear the Velocissimo shorts on 60+ rides and feel just as good. But then my rear end isn't a connoisseur with highly refined tastes in chamois.
In short, these are good shorts and I've no complaints; however, unless you know that the chamois is absolutely what you need then it might make better sense to get the Velocissimos. You won't go wrong with those, even on longish rides. Plus they have some cooler designs.
I like these shorts, right along the lines of the lesser Velocissimo Due and Equipe shorts, but with a lighter fabric. The big change is in the chamois to the "advanced" Progetto X2, but it doesn't do it for me. It's a very large chamois, not really an improvement on the Kiss3, just a bigger is better and we put gel in it approach. Everything else about the short makes them perfect as the go to bib, but I'll save a little money and keep getting the velocissimo's. True to size, so they run small by compare to most brands, I wear a medium in Capo, Pearli, LG and most everything else but a large in Castelli. The fit is snug, but it's as close to a race product as you can get without being for racing.
I'm training for my first Century. I want bib shorts or regular shorts that provide required protection. Whether this or another model, what's your reccommendation? So far my longest ride has been 60 miles. Thanks
Jim - I am very picky about my shorts/chamois and have used these on my latest century ride without any problems. The chamois is very comfortable and I'm 6'3" 195 lbs. I highly recommend the Proteggo X2 chamois by Castelli or the chamois in the Capo Padrone bib shorts for long rides and comfort. Good luck!
I am 6'3" 200 lbs with a 36" waist. The XL fits perfectly. The inseam length is a little short (9"), but they are Euro-shorts, I expected this. The compression is excellent keeping everything in the right place and keeping legs strong.
Now for the down side... The chamois, was initially comfortable, but after 10 miles, I began feeling it right on my sits-bones. This is not supposed to happen. Have an older pair of LG shorts, that are wearing out, that never caused this issue. I tried the PI Pro bibs, the chamois is awesome, the fit not quite as good for my height. I read all the reviews on the Castelli and I have to say that I am surprised at the feel given all the development. The Castelli's have a vicious gel insert and I think it compresses too much and is thicker than almost any other Pro-level chamois I have tried. I do find that it is more bearable in the drops than the hoods. In these shorts, it is quite possible that the bib is rotated a bit to far forward and contributes to the discomfort on the sits-bones.I stuck with these for my last 5 rides, but yesterday the pressure started almost immediately and made for a uncomfortable 2 hours in the saddle.
Update 8/17/2012- After 58 days, one of the seams let go in the back during a ride. This was not cool.. Took some serious ribbing during group ride. So now in order to keep these functional I'll have to put more time or money in to re-sew the seem. Disappointed with the quality. For near $200 this should be better. I have down graded these from 2 stars to 1 star. RC is awesome.. took the shorts back and provided a refund... Great customer service.
Until this point I had only ever worn shorts. Been hearing the hype for ever about bibs from a friend so I decided to buy some. I had only every worn Pearl Izumi shorts, but I had been using Castelli jerseys for a few years and loved them so I though I would try their bibs. I bought two pair of the Presto and two pair of the Endurance Bibs. The biggest thing I have to say about these is the chamois is so much better than the Pearl Izumi Elite In-R-Cool shorts I had been using. I had a few sores from my old shorts and as soon as I got on the bike with the Castelli Prestos I did not feel any pain the whole 30 mi ride. Heck after the first 10 minutes I was trying to remember what all colors they had so I could order some more and just what I should say in my review.
The next day I tried out the Endurance and they are just as comfortable. Which I guess says something to how good the Kiss3 chamois is because I thought they both felt great. I do think the Progetto X2 would be better for longer rides though. I rode 55 mi on the Endurance and had no pain. I was sold. I will also say that I really liked the leg grips on these. They stay in place great but there is no feel of the rubber or gel on your leg gripping or pulling hair when you move them. I ended up ordering all three colors in the Endurance 4 pairs of the Preston and one pair of the Velocissimo Equip to go with an Acid Green jersey I had. You seem to get so much more choices in color when you buy bibs compared to regular shorts.
This is my first pair of bib shorts (always just wore bike shorts) but I must say these are really, really comfortable. I bought them for my first metric century and picked these on the strength of others' recommendation here. It didn't disapppoint in terms of comfort and fit. Wore them a few weeks before the metric ride to break them in. On the first ride, I could tell, this is the one for me. Got another pair 3 weeks after. After all, it's not often you find the right one for you. I am 6 ft and 200 lbs. I got the XL.
I'm 6'1" (185cm), 182lbs. with 26" (66cm) thighs, 15" arms and I wear 33W pants (actual waist meas. = 35"). I'm large for a cyclist and have been using the Castelli Ergo Tre bibs. The Kiss 3 pad is ok but only for shorter rides - 20 miles or less. It leaves me sore though and prevents me from riding on consecutive days. Lighter/smaller cyclists though seem to really like the Kiss 3 pad. The bike seat also makes a difference.
I recently received the Castelli Endurance Bib. I ordered an XL in black and it fits me perfectly. They have a visually simple design and the fit feels a bit odd compared to the contours of the Ergo Tre. The only standout graphic is the logo. The lettering on the leg hems is attractive and the leg grippers are a wide band of vertical rubber stripes that do a great job without pulling hair. The overall subdued look of this bib actually looks great when paired with any top. The garment quality / craftsmanship is excellent.
Now for the really important part: BUY THIS BIB! The Progetto X2 chamois (pad) is incredible. On my first ride I instantly knew - despite my firm seat - that I could go 50 or more miles pain free...and I can ride consecutive days. I now have several rides with this and I haven't gone back to my Ergo Tre bib. This chamois is used in Castelli's most expensive bibs. At this price they should've sold out already!