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Castelli's Chiro Due gloves are good-quality mid-weight gloves for cool autumn/winter days - although not for the very coldest rides.
The Chiros owe much of their performance to the fact that they're made from a Gore Windstopper fabric throughout - and that includes the cuffs. No cold air gets through it. Plus, although these gloves aren't designed to be waterproof, no rain gets through the Windstopper fabric either. It can soak through the seams but not through the fabric itself.
More warmth comes courtesy of Thinsulate insulation that sits between the glove upper and your hand - but not on the less exposed underside . The 40g variety of this fine-fibred synthetic insulation doesn't provide as much warmth as the more weighty versions but it has the advantage of being extremely low bulk.
Castelli give the temperature range of these gloves as 5-10C. I agree with this although, as ever, it'll come down to the individual. (By the way, last time we checked the Castelli website it gave a temperature range of 10-18C for these gloves. That's a mistake.) If you buy a pair with enough room you can always wear liner gloves underneath for extra warmth. With no cold air getting though the Chiros, a pair of thin merino gloves inside will make these useable when the temperature is a few degrees cooler.
The palms and the underside of the fingers are textured Pittard's leather that grips very well and there's a small amount of padding in there. And it really is a small amount. I found that fine on shorter rides but I wanted mitts underneath for extra comfort on rides over about 90mins or so. Again, it'll all come down to your personal preferences on that score.
You get good reinforcement in that section between your thumb and forefinger (does that part of your hand have a proper name? It should) and a useful microsuede panel on the back of each thumb to take care of all your wiping-away needs. That stripe across the back of the hand is reflective and the subtle Scorpion logo is a neat addition.
The only negative comment I have to make is that I often found it difficult to get my hands back inside these gloves if I took them off mid-ride. Say you get a puncture or have to delve into your pockets for some change; you have to take your gloves off. Although the Windstopper fabric is breathable, the soft fleece lining and your hands will inevitably be a little bit damp, and that makes things difficult. It's something you find with loads of close-fitting gloves. Wearing a stretchy liner glove cures it... but you might not want that extra warmth or bulk.
Ah, I do have one other little moan. There are two tiny holes in each of the cuffs where the little bits of plastic that held the merchandise tags went. They're hardly noticeable but still... Grrr!
Mid-weight Windstopper autumn/winter gloves with good warmth for their bulk -the price is steep, though
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Make and model: Castelli Chiro Due Glove
Size tested: 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?
Here's what Castelli say, "Our Chiro glove has been a favorite for years and now gets an update for even better fit and better insulation on the palm making it suitable for a wider range of conditions.
WindStopper fabric throughout
Made for comfort in cold weather riding
Lightly padded textured leather palm
Microsuede thumb panel
There's really not much insulation on the palm although the wind won't get through there. All the Thinsulate is on the back of the hands and the fingers. Those are the exposed bits so it makes sense.
Tell us some more about the technical aspects of the product?
The main fabric is from the Gore Windstopper family which provides lightweight windproofing. Thinsulate 40g provides exceptional warmth for its bulk because of the fine fibres used and their density.
Very impressive, my only problem being getting the gloves on again after taking them off mid-ride.
Well made using excellent materials. Durability won't be a problem
This isn't a mark for their weight as such; more for the amount of warmth they provide given their light weight and lack of bulk.
Windstopper fabrics are generally pricey and Thinsulate is usually a little more expensive than an unbranded equivalent. It's all good stuff... but you're paying a lot for mid-weight gloves
Tell us how the product performed overall when used for its designed purpose
Comfortable with a very good level of warmth
Tell us what you particularly liked about the product
The warmth and comfort for the lack of bulk
Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product
I've mentioned that I struggled to get them on after taking them off mid-ride. Plus, the price is a hard one to swallow
Did you enjoy using the product? Yes
Would you consider buying the product? I wouldn't spend this much on gloves except for deep-winter insulators
Would you recommend the product to a friend? As above
Age: 40 Height: 190cm Weight: 74kg
I usually ride: My best bike is:
I've been riding for: Over 20 years I ride: Most days I would class myself as: Expert
I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, sportives, general fitness riding,
Mat has been in cycling media since 1996, on titles including BikeRadar, Total Bike, Total Mountain Bike, What Mountain Bike and Mountain Biking UK, and he has been editor of 220 Triathlon and Cycling Plus. Mat has been road.cc technical editor for over a decade, testing bikes, fettling the latest kit, and trying out the most up-to-the-minute clothing. We send him off around the world to get all the news from launches and shows too. He has won his category in Ironman UK 70.3 and finished on the podium in both marathons he has run. Mat is a Cambridge graduate who did a post-grad in magazine journalism, and he is a winner of the Cycling Media Award for Specialist Online Writer. Now over 50, he's riding road and gravel bikes most days for fun and fitness rather than training for competitions.