Bib Shorts - Assos V Rapha

Discuss light weight issues concerning road bikes & parts.
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Carbon_Cowboy
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by Carbon_Cowboy

I prefer the fit/fabric of the Rapha, but the chamois of the Assos. Like mentioned earlier, the Assos has a noticeable compression, while the Rapha is a thinner fabric and I believe cooler in hot temperatures. Another feature I like about Rapha is the open back. Since this is the part of you body with the least air cooling I always get a little sweaty on by back. Rapha doesn't use the T-strap back like Assos, which I believe helps with cooling.

In addition I would like to add that IMO Etxeondo has the best bottoms (bibs/tights) on the market. The sizing is weird (especially for the tops), but great chamois and overall bibs.

tri
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by tri

tommasini wrote:Just curious what you are using to wash your shorts. I've got Assos shorts over 10 years old and they still look, fit, and perform like new. Using a mild soap - usually Dove dishwashing liquid.


I use a liquid detergent called Ariel sensitive, washing machine program for synthetics at 30*c.

by Weenie


kos
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by kos

Anyone who thinks Pearl Izumi is better than either Rapha or Assos is simply hilarious.

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ultimobici
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by ultimobici

tommasini wrote:
tri wrote:What about wear and tare for the Raphas? Last season I gave assos a try. Bought 3 pairs of the Assos, T FI. Mille S5 bibshorts (longleg). While I really like the bib itself and can't really comment on the pad because it's degraded the same on all (they still feel comfortable). The thing I noticed is that they didn't stay black all that long (I wash my bibs after each ride irregardless of length of the workout).

How long do you use a pair of bibs (expected use)?


Just curious what you are using to wash your shorts. I've got Assos shorts over 10 years old and they still look, fit, and perform like new. Washed after each ride using a mild soap - usually Dove dishwashing liquid.

My thoughts too.

I think most of us baulk at the cost of the Assos cleanser and choose to use a cheaper alternative. But many end up using a "gentle" version of regular laundry detergent which isn't ideal. I did a little research into the actual constituents of the Assos cleaner, which was surprisingly easy. All you do is google "assos active cleanser data sheet" and you'll find it.

http://www.assos.com/fileUpload/downloa ... nglish.pdf" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

Then just found the closest thing to it, which I found to be The Method Laundry Detergent. Damn sight cheaper too! So much so that I now use it for all my clothes, not just cycling.

http://methodlaundry.com/" onclick="window.open(this.href);return false;

After almost 18 months of daily use and daily washing my Assos shorts, roubaix shorts & tights are still black with no discernible fade to grey.

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mrowkoob
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by mrowkoob

I have about 10 bottles of Assos cleanser lying somewhere. I you want it just pay the postage and it´s yours... It reeks of perfume. I use nonallergic, environmentally friendly detergent.
I´ve been through most bib brands (not rapha) and now I only use Assos bibs and have so for the last 8 years now. I have plenty of others lying around but that is what fits me the best. You can write all sorts of statements about the different high end bibbrands (In my mind there are only 3 assos,castelli and exte-ondo) but it all comes down to what you personally prefer therefore just as when discussing shoes it all comes down to your personal experience. Try out a few different brands and then go with the ones you prefer.
The unbearable wallet lightness of being a weightweenie

LionelB
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by LionelB

For me Assos hands down. Tried the Rapha one did not like the chamois at all.

For durability, my older Assos Bib is over 10 years old and going strong.

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ultimobici
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by ultimobici

mrowkoob wrote:I have about 10 bottles of Assos cleanser lying somewhere. I you want it just pay the postage and it´s yours... It reeks of perfume. I use nonallergic, environmentally friendly detergent.
I´ve been through most bib brands (not rapha) and now I only use Assos bibs and have so for the last 8 years now. I have plenty of others lying around but that is what fits me the best. You can write all sorts of statements about the different high end bibbrands (In my mind there are only 3 assos,castelli and exte-ondo) but it all comes down to what you personally prefer therefore just as when discussing shoes it all comes down to your personal experience. Try out a few different brands and then go with the ones you prefer.

Thanks for the offer. I did the search when I was having to pay retail. Now I'm working for an Assos dealer it's not an issue. That said the Method stuff is way cheaper and doing a fine job.

I'll probably try a pair next week once I've been paid.

Thanks for all the positive & helpful posts.

xrs2
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by xrs2

Just to be clear...the OLD Assos bib shorts had the Cytech pad. The new shorts contain a very thin blue pad.

My experience, and the experience of one of my friends, is that the new Assos pads are quite uncomfortable and tend to bunch up. The old Cytech orange pads were awesome. I think this is a case where they improved something that didn't need improving.

The Rapha classic bib shorts have the same pad as the old Assos shorts. That said, the new Rapha bib shorts do not fit me very well. The seam in the crotch area tends to dig in and cause pain on long rides.

In short, the best bib shorts I have ever owned are the old Assos (orange Cytech pad). The new Assos shorts with the blue pad are terrible, and the new Rapha bib shorts with the Cytech pad are acceptable but not great.

Overall, I find the newer Assos stuff to be uncomfortable and does not fit me well at all. I'm not sure who their intended market is, as I'm built like a cyclist (6' tall, 145 lbs, big legs, skinny upper body) and it fits poorly.

I'm still searching for a good alternative to the old Assos bib shorts. Currently trying some Castelli stuff.

indigo
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by indigo

OP, any reason you specifically only want to compare to Rapha, not Capo, Castelli or other high-end stuff ? IMO, assos ultra comfy and with the superb post sales repair service, why change ?

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ultimobici
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by ultimobici

indigo wrote:OP, any reason you specifically only want to compare to Rapha, not Capo, Castelli or other high-end stuff ? IMO, assos ultra comfy and with the superb post sales repair service, why change ?

I'm not looking to change, just augment my wardrobe!

I like Rapha's jerseys, jackets & gilets but I'm just wondering really.

limba
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by limba

Just try them for yourself and you'll know.

idler
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by idler

Have to agree regarding the Assos blue chamois. It does not suit me at all - it does not seem to be attached to main material of shorts except around the edges - I have made mine usable by hand sewing the chamois to the shorts in the area where my sit bones are located. Others I know, however, swear by the Assos shorts/chamois and maybe my problems stem from the fact I have narrow sit bones.

With the Assos shorts you also have to get exactly the right size - I have a pair of large and a pair of mediums, the former are very chaffing after a short time on the bike.

My actual favourite shorts are Castelli for the Progetto X2 chamois and Gore Xenon for short/chamois. I also have a pair of the Raphas which I like better than the Assos.

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kgt
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by kgt

mrowkoob wrote:You can write all sorts of statements about the different high end bibbrands (In my mind there are only 3 assos,castelli and exte-ondo).

+ giordana and santini IME

limba
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by limba

It's all personal preference. I prefer Rapha to Castelli and Ondo and everything else but if the OP wants to know which bib will fit him best he really has to try them on.

by Weenie


cookiemonster
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by cookiemonster

kos wrote:Anyone who thinks Pearl Izumi is better than either Rapha or Assos is simply hilarious.


I was given some top of the range Pearl bibs as a sample to test (unlike Rapha and assos, Pearl do a range with cheap'ish, moderate and high-end kit so to be clear this was their top line stuff). They're easily as good as my Assos kit - same orange dimpled pad, quality stitching and proper slim race fit.

On the Assos vs Rapha question, as other have said, if you're constrained to these two only, and you're ambivalent about the brands themselves, then its down to personal fit. I've a cupboard full decent kit from a selection of brands, it's all fantastically good stuff - at this level its down to fit, aesthetics and brand image (kind of like the bikes themselves I guess!)

jon

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