Specialized RBX bibs, first impression
Went to the LBS to get a pair of bibs to use a $100 gift certificate I had. The selection wasn't huge: Capo shorts with the LBS logo on it, Assos F1, Bontrager bibs, and 2 Specialized bibs. Since I have a pair of Assos Mille that I will never wear, I skipped over the F1's. The Bontragers also didn't appeal to me, so it was down to the Capo ($119) and the Specialized RBX ($169) that I tried on. I ended up getting the Specialized because I liked the compression they gave.
These bibs have a long inseam, with a wide gripper that was looser than the fabric of the leg. On the inside is silicone Specialized "S" logo for the grippers. Turning the grippers out they hugged my legs decently. The fabric has a square pattern that feels nice. I got the large size, and with my ~37" waist they offered a snug fit, but not overly tight. They come up pretty high above the waist, which enhances the comfort, yet it is quite a pull to have to stretch them to go to the bathroom. There is also a pocket in the back of the bibs. I wish they had the leg pockets like my DeSoto 400 mile bibs do though! I'm spoiled by those.
The chamois has 3 densities of padding. A low density outer layer that's divided into 2 different colored sections with a tiny seam. The main padding has medium in the tip and middle section, while the seat part has a higher density. The shape of the padding looks rather phallic, instead of a saddle shape. In trying them on in the store, it seemed that the chamois was a little wide in the middle of it. I figured this might be due to that I was not sitting on a saddle.
I went for a 30 mile ride yesterday on them. The shoulder straps are comfortable, but do seem like they could be a tiny bit longer for my 5'11" height. The comfort of the chamois was very good, almost as good as my DeSotos. However, the middle section of the chamois did feel just a tiny bit too wide while on the saddle. It felt as if it as cutting into my skin a little. This could cause some serious chafing for really long rides. One note to add here is that I didn't wash these before using them. So washing them could remove this concern, but I thinkt most performance fabrics don't come with a finish like many cotton fabrics come with.
Overall, after just one ride, I'd say they're worth a look into. The chamois issue could be just me for all I know. What would I change other than that? Thicker fabric in the back to prevent the "rear window" over time. Slightly longer straps, although this didn't bother me at all during the ride. Tighter leg-ends without grippers would be a huge plus. Maybe a tiny bit shorter of an inseam.
I have a single track mind
Check out hottest road bike products from these brands!