Dare2b have recently been plugging away expanding their product range, and in particular, concentrating on their new ski wear and cycling designs.
Having owned various Dare2b jackets, shorts and softshells, I recently turned my attention to their latest “do it all “Headset” jacket, as it appeared to offer fantastic value for money and looked pretty good too.. Looking over the jacket, the built in features ticked most of the boxes I look for in a shell jacket. Waterproof zips all round, long pit zips, drop tail, two deep pockets, small chest pocket and a fixed hood are all present and correct. Attention to detail is as good as the big specialist brands.
Although titled “Headset jacket” its not a cycling specific design, the style and construction suggest that its more of a tough general purpose “all mountain” shell for use from Autumn through to winter and targets activities like ski-ing, hillwalking / mountaineering. Weighing in at 800 grams, its certainly pitched at the burlier end of the scale, clearly focusing on durability rather than light weight and packability….which will no doubt draw the attention of freeriders, enduro participants or lovers of winter forays into the hills. Lovely and soft, the four way stretch fabric feels great, and there was no cold or clammy spots inside, even when wearing a short sleeved t-shirt underneath.
The hood works reasonably well, but it would benefit having a longer and stiffer wired peak, as it could flop down occasionally in high winds or heavy rain, but on the whole, peripheral vision was good, and the hood volume is large enough to fit over a helmet, which is a big plus in downpours.
I spent two days cycling and hillwalking amongst the Scottish hills in typical changeable weather wearing the Headset jacket, and I was pleasantly surprised to find it very breathable for the money, although not quite reaching the standards of “Event” or “Gore Tex”, I felt that it was only an issue when the DWR coating wore off and the outer fabric “wetted out”, or when wearing the jacket on the hot, clammy drizzly days I encountered.
Having said that, I remained fairly dry for the majority of the time I used it, and only suffered a couple of damp patches on the nylon upper arms and shoulders, but in all fairness, I would expect that to happen with any outdoor shell garment when confronted with that kind of weather.
Although priced at £120, you can usually find the jacket on the Dare2b website at a discounted price.
- Quality Feel and fit
- Funky design and colour choice
- Drop tail
- Large volume hood
- Elasticated drawcords and adjusters could be bigger and more glove friendly
- Hood peak could be stiffer
- Poor DWR coating
Reviewed by Raymond Clarke
- part polyester taffeta lining
- 1 x zipped internal pocket incl
- MP3 port
- Weighs less than 800g ( based on large size )
- Breathability rating. 10000/M2/24!Hrs
- Waterproof and breathable Ared V0220000 polyester 4 way stretch fabric
- Durable water repellent finish
- Taped seams
- Grown on technical wired peaked
- hood with high collar and adjusters
- Roll away hood function
- Hi-tech water resistant centre. front zip with inner zip guard
- Underarm ventilation zips
- Articulated sleeve design
- Adjustable cuffs
- 1 x zipped chest pocket with water repellent zip
- 2 x zipped lower pockets with water repellent zips
- Adjustable shockcord hem
- Part mesh
- £120. MRRP