Dorel-owned Sugoi was at PressCamp in Deer Valley to launch new road clothing, including women's bib-shorts which lower easily for comfort breaks. Chris Gagan, Sugoi's Director of Product, deftly demonstrated how women will accomplish this (he used a tailor's dummy). Normally, this would be drama enough for one day but, for his next trick, Gagan amazed editors with his bladder control.
He used two perspex columns, a bladder pump and some water to show editors how the company's NeoShell jacket is so breathable it doesn't need vents.
This jacket is made from a fabric developed by Polartec and has been available in the outdoor market for two years. Sugoi has exclusivity in the bike market through until the end of 2014. Information on Sugoi's NeoShell product range was released in January and the Deer Valley PressCamp was one of the first opportunities to show the actual products, and how breathable they are.
On standard breathable shells, breathability is achieved through diffusion: moisture and heat create enough pressure that perspiration vapour passes through the fabric. Soft shells trade waterproofness for greater breathability by making use of convection: an exchange of air allows more moisture vapour to escape. NeoShell is said to deliver the best of both worlds. The Polartec membrane allows air to pull moisture vapour out – even at extremely low levels of pressure.
NeoShell jackets will be available in road and mountain bike versions, RSE and RSX respectively.
Gagan demonstrated NeoShell's breathability by showing how much water could be forced through the fabric. This was accomplished with two water-filled perspex columns, capped with fabric. Gagan used a NeoShell jacket and one from a leading competitor (the fabric supplier for this jacket begins with G and ends in Tex)
By squeezing the hand bladder, air could be squeezed through the water. On the NeoShell jacket, water couldn't get past the fabric from the outside but the faux sweat was shown to exit from the inside. On the competitor's jacket no bubbles appeared on the outside when air was forced through.
This wasn't an exact scientific test for breathability but it makes for a good demonstration.
Now, back to that bib short. The RS Pro Bib with Pitstop Interface has two removable shoulder straps that unclip in the front, under the bust. The short can then be dropped. To make it into a bib short again, pull the strap back down and re-clip.