liam7020 wrote:wheelbuilder wrote:Rapha has done a fantastic job of promoting themselves. They helped turn Assos from a halo-brand that everyone thought was the absolute pinnacle of technical performance and styling to an almost irrelevant brand worn by old guys, fat guys, and Fondo hardmen. I work one block away from their San Francisco Cycle Club. That place is absolutely bumping. 9 out of 10 fastish club riders and expendable income types that ride in San Francisco Bay area wear Rapha. I mean everything. Bibs, base layer, jersey, vest, socks, and re-branded shoes. It has become almost a joke in and of itself. A caricature of what a roadie is in San Francisco and Marin. Too bad the stuff kind of sucks. Imported boring fabrics with a run of the mill Cytech Chamois and en vogue minimal branding. On the topic in general.............It is important to me to own finely made Italian kit actually made in italy, with some real effort and research put into fabrics, chamois, and hopefully loud italian style. Feeling like I look properly put together, makes me feel good about myself, and in turn makes me ride better.
BTW.......Rapha really is pretty good stuff. Head and shoulders above joke brands like Castelli. I just like to give them a hard time cause they are so utterly ubiquitous around these parts.
Castelli? Is that the same joke brand which produced the Gabba jacket which half the pro peleton wore with the manufacturers logo blacked out because it was so superior to their sponsored clothing? The same jacket that Wiggins bought for the whole Sky team at the time when Rapha were their actual official clothing sponsor?
There is no dispute that the Gabba jacket is very good, and led to other brands developing similar performing outerwear, but c'mon. Castelli? Castelli is what Freds think is high end and continues to be wrought with sizing problems, QC problems, and general slopiness even within the same line and model. Chamois' sewn out of position, super low quality materials that last two or three rides, sizing so bad that users have no clue what is going to fit them. Not to mention production that is scattered all over the globe.......again, sometimes within the same line and model, which leads to huge sizing problems......China, Vietnam, Croatia, Bangladesh, Romania, Phillipines. Their stuff always looks great, with undeniable flair, but.........