Free 2-Day Shipping on Orders Over $50*
Noel

Noel

evanston, il

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on December 3, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

Last year, I spent the winter riding on a Cycleops Jet Fluid Pro trainer, which is a "dumb" trainer. I used a PowerTap hub in my rear wheel to measure power so that I could use Zwift. Everything worked great, and I was amazed how quiet the trainer was compared to magnetic units I've used in the past.

This year my wife wanted a dedicated trainer, so she took the Cycleops and I got to upgrade to this, the Wahoo Kickr Snap. Oh man, it's amazing!!! I honestly didn't think it was possible, but it is even quieter than the Cycleops. It is the quietest trainer I've ever used, bar none. As you might be able to tell, this is really important to me, because I live in an old wooden apartment building with neighbors downstairs who I like, and don't want to hate me.

As for the "smart" trainer aspects, the Kickr Snap is always within ~2-5% of the power reading from my PowerTap hub, so I trust it. The variable resistance when using Zwift (how I do most of my indoor training) is amazing, and feels pretty realistic. Overall I couldn't be happier with this trainer.

If you forced me to find one flaw with the trainer, I can think of only two. First, it's annoying to have to stop and calibrate the unit by "spinning down" 10 minutes into every ride, but this is a small price to pay for a power-meter smart trainer at this price. Also, even though the stance of the trainer seems just as wide as the Cycleops, the Kickr Snap is more likely to rock side to side when I'm doing an all out effort (~800 watts...hey, I'm little). This is no big deal for me, but if you can push 1,000+ watts in a sprint, you may find yourself rocking this trainer more than some with wider stances.

In short, I couldn't recommend a trainer more highly.

(1)

 

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on September 29, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've put it through the wringer

You don't need it. Mechanical shifting works perfectly well. You have to remember to charge batteries (albeit very, very rarely). It's not much lighter than it's mechanical brethren...

But, oh man, once you've tried it you will never ever ever want to go back. In a word, it's perfect.

I chose eTap over Ultegra Di2 because I don't like wires and I wanted to install it myself. Turns out, it works perfectly on Shimano 11 speed drivetrains as well. I'm pretty handy with a wrench and was able to install it in about 2 hours, including time to re-wrap my bars (which takes me longer than most people).

Setup and adjustment takes about 3 minutes. I did it while watching the SRAM youtube setup video and it worked flawlessy. Once set up, it has never missed a single shift. It is quiet, unobtrusive, reliable, and beautiful on the bike. Bonus, it talks natively to my Garmin Edge 520 so I can see what gear I'm in, what the ratio is, and the battery level so I don't forget to charge. I've been riding on it about 8-10 hours a week for maybe six weeks and my batteries still show full power (it's flat in Illinois so I don't shift too much).

No doubt, this is a pricey upgrade. But I can't imagine better money spent for nothing more than a good feeling.

(3)

 

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on April 23, 2016

3 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

So everything about the construction of these shorts is top notch: workmanship, materials, chamois. But for me, the legs are too short. When I first put them on they're fine, but by 5 minutes into a ride they've slid up my thighs at least two inches and the material bunches up in the groin where the leg meets the chamois. Today I wore them with knee warmers that have a grippy rubber ring around the top to keep your shorts in place and they still slid up, right above the top of the knee warmers. These may have to be retired to turbo trainer duty.

(0)

 

0 Comments

0 Comments

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on March 3, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I have both this and the other Castelli mesh baselayer, and while they cost about the same amount, this one is head and shoulders above its sibling. The material is much thicker, stretchier, and more substantial. I find this type of mesh baselayer keeps me cool on hot rides and warm under my kit on cold rides, so I wear one on essentially every ride. I also think it takes the brunt of the sweat, and as such I feel like I can wash my jerseys less often, which lets them live a bit longer. All-in-all, this is my concept of the perfect baselayer and I could not recommend it more highly. Other comments are accurate, when you take it out of the box it will look like it was made for a small child...trust me, it stretches.

(1)

 

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on March 3, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

I just wore this for the first time today. It's ridden in my back pocket on at least half a dozen rides, but this morning it was chilly with warmer temperatures predicted, so I threw it on to start. It is almost completely wind proof, and didn't get sweaty until I really started working. There is some tricky venting in this jacket that lets it breathe a bit without making it too "open" to the elements. Then, with a few miles left in the ride it started to rain lightly and this was just enough to keep from getting too wet. Again, it breathed fairly well in the rain too. For a jacket you can roll up and stuff in your pocket for every ride, this is about perfect. I have the vest too and love that as well. Only complaint, it's a bit baggier than much of my Castelli kit.

(0)

 

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on January 26, 2016

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it once or twice and have initial impressions

These are far and away the most comfortable tights I've ever worn. There's something about the fleecy lining, the material of the straps, and the high cut that make them feel like lovely pajamas.

I haven't had a chance to ride much distance in them yet (mostly stuck on the trainer due to rain and snow), but the chamois feels great on first impression.

Overall the quality of construction is top-notch. These are some serious bibs.

Only quibble, the ankles are a tiny bit loose on my bird sized legs, so I'll need to get some thicker wool socks, perhaps.

(0)

 

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on December 10, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

These are perfect for me. My other shoe covers are hard-shells with a zipper that are absolutely bomb-proof, but they take forever to get on and off. So, I end up wearing these Diluvio covers all the time. They are super easy on and off. The fit is great for me. I wear a 42.5 road shoe (which is pretty smooth with only one boa tightener) and the S/M fits my shoes perfectly. A couple nags: the loop that you use to pull them on is pretty big and dangly, I cut it off after the first ride. The closure system is really easy with velcro, but because the inside is a bit fuzzy, the velcro is always getting stuck to the inside of the cover in the laundry, etc. Finally, they are pretty short in the ankle. Sometimes at the end of a long ride I realize they're no longer covering the bottom of my tights and my sock is showing. Just something to keep in mind. For me, they're just what I wanted.

(0)

 

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on November 5, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I'm 5'7" and 130lbs with very small calves. I got the X Small and they fit perfectly. They're tight, but there's plenty of stretch and they don't slip down. The two beads of sticky stuff on the top hem are great, one for your leg, and one for your shorts over top.

(0)

 

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on November 5, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I echo everything said in the previous reviews, especially about the "see through" nature of the shirt. One thing that hasn't been mentioned, wearing an undershirt like this is a great way to help keep arm warmers up (if you're like me and have issues with that). I'm 5'7" and 130lbs, size S/M fit perfectly. I was afraid it would be too big, but the shirt is very stretchy.

(0)

 

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on November 5, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

This vest has a great fit, like all Castelli pieces I've worn. I'm 5'7" and 130lbs, and I got a size small. It knocks down the wind and pairs really well with arm warmers down to the low '50s or high '40s. The one thing is, it tends to get some condensation build up from sweat on the inside. For a single ply, light weight shell I wouldn't expect it to be too breathable, but it's worth a mention. Also adds a pop of visibility to dark cycling clothes.

(2)

 

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on November 4, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I'm not sure what to say about this chain. It fits my legacy 9-speed Shimano drivetrain, and it works. How can you fault that?

The chain came with a pretty sticky lube, so I'll probably strip it and re-lube it with something nicer for the winter. Other than that, it's quiet and it works. The quick link is always nice. Pushing the pins to make the chain the appropriate length is also easy, as there are indents on the ends of each pin.

(0)

 

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on November 4, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I replaced a very old pair of Speedplay X5s with these. Essentially, everything is the same. They perform perfectly.

A side note. When I installed the new cleats on my shoes, first I reused the plate from my old X5s. Second, I tightened the (4) screws into the cleats way too tight. Both BAD ideas!

It was all I could do to stand my full body weight on the pedals and stamp down to get clipped in. Then, the cleats creaked and groaned with every pedal stroke. I thought I was going out of my mind. Finally, I actually read the instructions, which said never combine parts from older and newer pedals and cleats, and also gave an insanely low torque value for the cleat screws. Once I remedied those two issues, they work flawlessly.

(0)

 

0 Comments

Noel

Noelwrote a review of on November 4, 2015

5 5

Familiarity: I've used it several times

I previously wore a 43 in Specialized shoes, but after trying on some fi'zi:ks at a local shop, I decided 42.5 would be better. These fit perfectly. For the size, they are a bit narrower than my specialized shoe, which fits my foot very well. The look is unparalleled at this price. In white, they are the best looking shoes I've seen, in my opinion. At first, the tongue, which is short and a stiff combination of leather(ette?) and mesh, dug into the front of my ankle. The first couple rides were pretty painful and I started to develop a sore. By the third ride, the tongue had begun to soften and I don't even notice it anymore.

(0)

 

0 Comments