19 December 2008

More on reflective vests

Posted by todd under: Safety gear .

Here’s more from Jason Nunemaker on the Carhartt reflective vest (I passed Jason’s recommendation along yesterday — thanks Jason! BTW — Jason writes some funny stuff, and he has lots of good cycling tips):

Hi, Todd — here’s more on the vest, straight from the horse’s… well, let’s just say “mouth.” :-)

Apparently, ANSI ranks this sort of reflective stuff by classes. My vest (shown) is a Class 2. Even better is a Class 3, which (as far as I can tell) needs sleeves so it can offer more side visibility. G&L offers a Class 3 on their Web site, but it wasn’t in stock at the store. I like this one better because of the orange contrasting — it really seems to make the reflective pop off the already annoyingly bright yellow.

The one question mark for me is breathability — my night riding is usually the result of short (and cold!) winter days around here, so I can’t say how this will perform when the temps rise. There are mesh versions of similar vests that might be better in the summer.

4 Comments so far...

Safety Vest Manufacturer Says:

19 December 2008 at 4:53 pm.

I had a class 2 vest like you but I recently switched it in for a class 3. I must say that the sleeves make it much more reflective without inhibiting movement. I highly recommend you switch to a class 3 vest, especially if you are going to do a lot of night riding.

Karen Says:

5 March 2009 at 1:18 am.

Todd: When I lived in Louisville (Highlands neighborhood if you know it) I road TARC to work most days and loved it for the reading and pondering time. I had complete strangers stop and offer my rides to work, so odd they thought it that a woman in business attire might actually ride the bus! The idea!

When I bike home from work without my husband, friends and coworkers often ask if I’d like to pack my bike in their car and catch a ride home with them. It is sweet that they worry about my safety but I think they don’t realize totally that riding home really is a great way to end the work day.

Amy Says:

25 July 2009 at 3:11 pm.

I’m not sure if you are an average guy cycling or a guy doing average cycling. I know you aren’t average. I think on the whole you are above average, with only a few fleeting moments of below averageness. Average or no, I admire the fact that you cycle to work. Makes me wish I had a set of wheels.

Rider Says:

16 November 2011 at 7:13 am.

These vests really stand out — a big step in visibility.

Where I live, it is often hot and humid. I find the vest I have (don’t know the brand — another rider had two and gave me one) is too hot for many rides.

I’d like to find one that doesn’t oven up on me.

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Yes, that's me, Todd Van Campen. No, I'm not wearing a helmet. Yes, I usually wear one, so please don't scold! Seriously, I endorse wearing a helmet! Pinky swear! In fact, I almost ALWAYS wear one (while riding a bike anyway). (On the other hand, if YOU don't want to wear a helmet, I have no problem with it.) I don't remember what happened on this particular day. Fortunately for all of us it makes for a less-nerdly picture. My exceptionally talented professional photographer friend Charles Bertram took this photo.

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