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review

Velotoze Tall Cover

8
£14.99

VERDICT:

8
10
Fantastic bad weather protection and great for racing and time trialling, but lack breathability for longer rides
Weight: 
98g

The Velotoze Tall Covers are overshoes simply made from rubber, not that dissimilar to Marigold gloves. They provide highly impressive rain and wind protection with arguable aerodynamic benefits, but a lack of breathability leads to sweaty feet in warmer weather or on longer rides.

Getting the Velotoze Tall Covers on is a battle, if you try to fit them on like regular overshoes. Velotoze suggests the best way to fit them is to first pull them over your feet and up your ankles, slip your shoes on, and then stretch the overshoe over the top and front of the shoe.

The first time you use them does take a while, but you soon get the knack of it. Just don't try to do it in a hurry. Velotoze also recommends reapplying some talcum powder after a few uses, as that helps with the removal. Rubber, talcum powder, we're on thin ice here...

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The rubber material forms a second skin. It's like they've been shrink-wrapped into place. The overshoes have a cleat hole and another hole at the heel, to help with the fit. Unlike regular overshoes, though, there are no zips or Velcro straps to fail.

They are snug around the ankles and at first it's a bit irritating as they apply more pressure than other overshoes, but I quickly got used to it.

The first benefit they offer is fantastic bad weather protection. They completely block wind and rain, and I detected no ingress of water during some very wet rides. They easily surpass most other overshoes for weather protection. Apply some silicone spray and the mud will slide right off them.

A second benefit is the aerodynamic one, though it's harder to support with no wind tunnel data. They don't look that dissimilar to the overshoes worn by Team GB and Wiggo, and that seems to have prompted what amounted to about half the competitors in my local 10-mile time trial to rush out and buy them. As far as smoothing the airflow over any sort of shoe, there's no question the super-tight fit achieves that.

The downside is that after some rides my feet and socks were soaked. There is zero breathability. Even a short 10-mile time trial, plus a 30-minute warm up beforehand, was enough to get my feet really sweaty. Not pleasant.

While there's no reason why you couldn't wear them for a longer ride in cooler temperatures, they are most definitely a product best saved for road racing and time trialling. You're going to look a bit of an idiot if you rock up to a club run in a pair of these I reckon, but don't let that stop you.

They're available in two versions, short and tall as tested here. The short ones are a good option over a summer race shoe, but do look a bit odd with exposed socks. The seal around the top isn't as good as the longer version, and is susceptible to letting water drip in. The tall version looks better and provides better protection from the elements. They're available in three sizes and a choice of colours.

Verdict

Fantastic bad weather protection and great for racing and time trialling, but lack breathability for longer rides

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road.cc test report

Make and model: Velotoze Tall Cover

Size tested: VeloToze, Tall, Red Large

Tell us what the product is for, and who it's aimed at. What do the manufacturers say about it? How does that compare to your own feelings about it?

VeloToze says: "veloToze Tall shoe covers are designed for road cycling on cold, rainy or snowy days. Whether it's race day, training day or just another commute day, veloToze tall shoe covers will keep your feet dry, warm and comfortable."

Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?

Waterproof: designed to form a tight seal with your calf, to keep your feet and shoes dry

Windproof: windproof materials keep your feet warm even on cold morning or winter rides (5C/40F to 16C/60F)

Lightweight: made of a flexible, lightweight material that doesn't retain water when wet

No zippers or velcro straps : innovative design flexes over your shoe, so there are no vulnerability points, like zippers or velcro

Aerodynamic: smooth, flexible material creates a form-fitting design

Compact: easily fits in jersey pocket or saddle bag

Rate the product for quality of construction:
 
8/10

Well there's not really much to them, but they're well designed and well shaped, and the cleat cutout is accommodating of most types of cleats.

Rate the product for performance:
 
9/10

Impressive wind and rain protection, and arguably good aerodynamics too, but lack breathability for longer/warmer rides.

Rate the product for durability:
 
7/10

Initial concerns about the material tearing have so far proved unfounded, but you do need to treat them more carefully than regular overshoes. Probably not suitable for commuting.

Rate the product for weight, if applicable:
 
9/10

There's really very little to them, and therefore they are light on the scales.

Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:
 
8/10

They're quite snug around the ankles, but you soon get used to that. The sweaty feet is the biggest downside really.

Rate the product for value:
 
9/10

Cheap enough to invest in a couple of pairs, and better bad weather protection than more expensive overshoes.

Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose

For racing and time trialling, they're brilliant. I'd question their suitability for general riding and commuting, on the grounds of breathability and durability.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Aerodynamics and bad weather benefits.

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

My sweaty feet!

Did you enjoy using the product? Yes

Would you consider buying the product? Yes

Would you recommend the product to a friend? Yes

Use this box to explain your score

Overlook the lack of breathability and these are ideal for tackling wind and rain, perfect for racing and time trialling, but for commuting and general riding they're a bit overkill.

Overall rating: 8/10

About the tester

Age: 31  Height: 180  Weight: 67

I usually ride:   My best bike is:

I've been riding for: 10-20 years  I ride: Every day  I would class myself as: Expert

I regularly do the following types of riding: road racing, time trialling, cyclo-cross, commuting, touring, mountain biking

 

David has worked on the road.cc tech team since July 2012. Previously he was editor of Bikemagic.com and before that staff writer at RCUK. He's a seasoned cyclist of all disciplines, from road to mountain biking, touring to cyclo-cross, he only wishes he had time to ride them all. He's mildly competitive, though he'll never admit it, and is a frequent road racer but is too lazy to do really well. He currently resides in the Cotswolds.

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