Welcome to another installment of Rider Review, I’m Mic and I’ll be your host.
Today we have another Tour Master Product. In fact, the last of the Tour Master/Cortech Products for awhile. I promise.
It does seem I have a lot of Tour Master products, but the main reason is, it was easily available, and it just always seemed to fit the bill.
However, this is actually the first Tour Master product I purchased, and it now has been a couple year since I have purchased it.
I hope the review is a good representation of my feelings about this product, because I feel everyone needs a rainsuit for riding, cause eventually you’ll get stuck in a downpour you were not expecting.
So without any further ramblings, lets continue on today’s review of the Tour Master Defender 2-Piece Rainsuit.
Manufacture: Tour Master
Item Name: Defender 2-Piece Rainsuit
Item Category: Riding Gear – Rainsuits
Manufactures Website: http://www.tourmaster.com/xcart/catalog/Defender-2-Piece-Rainsuit-p-88_8.html
In The Wild: $62.95 – $70.00
• Size matched jacket and pant are sold together.
• Waterproof, Polyurethane-backed nylon shell with sealed seam construction.
• Features an Aqua-Barrier under-the-helmet hood to help eliminate seepage in the collar area. The hood easily stows in a hidden collar pocket.
• Contoured, microfiber-lined collar features an adjustable Velcro® closure.
• Polyester mesh lining enhances air circulation and comfort.
• Two large side-entry hand pockets, waterproof zippered chest pocket and a bellows thigh pant pocket.
• Underarm grommets allow airflow that diminishes moisture build-up.
• 3M™ Scotchlite® reflective piping and Tour Master’s signature reflective triangles help increase nighttime visibility.
• Sized to be worn over motorcycle riding apparel.
• Hanging loop is built into the jacket collar for post-ride air drying.
• Dual wind flap and Velcro® main jacket closure keeps moisture sealed out.
• Pants feature a high-density nylon seat panel to minimize slipping and add strength.
• Elastic flex panel pant waist provides a comfortable fit.
• Elastic cuffs with Velcro® closures help eliminate water encroachment into the sleeve and leg.
• Removable suspenders and leg stirrups.
Like most of my riding gear, it is usually purchased out of necessity after the fact. I somehow put myself into situations that while in it, I realize “I do not have the right gear for the job”, and this rainsuit was no different.
Every year, I pick a few friends, tell them to clear a weekend starting with Friday afternoon, and take them on a 3 day ride through Southern Washington and Northern Oregon’s wonderful scenic roads.
These roads, are the ones you dream about riding every day. Miles of long banked sweepers and tight technical corners all laid out on smooth pavement set in some of the most gorgeous breath taking views.
This is riding in the Columbia Gorge. A vast network of roads that squiggle their way through the mountainous terrain, along the winding rivers, and across the valley floors.
So back on topic here, this usually takes place at the end of August, beginning of September. I always check weather reports ahead of time, but with the Pacific Northwest and our unpredictable weather we have, it seems like clock work rain will eventually sneak into the forecast that time of year.
The first year we did the South of the Border run, we had a beautiful Friday, Saturday, and Sunday morning. But on the ride back to Seattle, as soon as we would crest Snoqualmie Pass, we hit rain.
Leather does an OK Job with keeping rain out. But only if it is freshly oiled, and not just baked for the last few days in 100 degree temps for hours on end. Black leather especially.
Eventually rain permeates the leather.
Not a huge deal, as the ride back into Seattle is not entirely to long after this point.
The next year, however, the weekend went exactly the same, except for 1 major difference. Not only did we hit rain the moment we got over Snoqualmie, we hit a monsoon of rain.
Rivers of water went crossing the Interstate while we made our way closer to Seattle. By the time I got home, not only was I completely soaked (Thank goodness it was warm), but as was my gloves, my helmet, everything.
This prompted me to look at purchasing a set of rain gear.
Luck would have it, that a week later, a friend of mine had setup a nice little bike night with one of this race sponsors, Adventure Motorsports in Monroe Washington.
They have a great selection of apparel and their staff was very knowledgeable and helpful at the same time. On top of that, they were giving a pretty hefty discount to people who made purchases that night.
So with that, I tried on a couple suits they had with the help of their staff, and ended up deciding on the Defender Rainsuit.
One of the great things about this rainsuit is it comes in its own little carry pouch. Which makes it easy to roll up, compress and stash away in a backpack, tailbag or large tank bag.
Secondly, it’s very light weight. It is not made to insulate, it is made to wear over your gear and rappel water.
It also comes with overpants. Although, I guess if you are already wearing overpants, and you put these over them, they would be overoverpants? Ok, I think I just confused myself.
So outside of these little things, how does it perform?
Well, it performs as you would expect.
I’ve used it on my morning commute in the winter time often when the rain is really coming down hard. I have never had an issue with it not keeping water away from me.
The one downside of the construction is everything is only single stitched.
The wrist straps and leg straps, if tugged on a bit to aggressively can detach them. This is an easy fix by just resewing them on, and adding some reinforcements.
Secondly, the suspenders are not removable as the details suggest. They clip to the front, but are sewn in the back.
The little under the helmet thing they have works ok. Not well enough however to really mess with IMHO.
I wish it also had a couple more pockets then it does. The jacket has a single breast pocket, and the pants have a single accordion style pocket. It would be nice if it had side pockets on the jacket to stow your gloves or hands while off the bike.
But overall, I am extremely satisfied with this product. It does exactly as it should, is small enough to pack away, and easily enough to put on and take off. The benefits of the gear far outweigh the faults, and the stitching issue is easily resolved in a couple minutes.
This is something I would recommend everyone to have. Whether you are a fair weather rider or a hardcore year round rider, it’s just nice to have when you are not sure of the weather. Also, if you plan on taking a trip for any amount of time, you really should be prepared, and this is cheap insurance for those rainy days.