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Craft Performance Bike Bib Shorts



Quality construction but poor performance and fit

At every product is thoroughly tested for as long as it takes to get a proper insight into how well it works. Our reviewers are experienced cyclists that we trust to be objective. While we strive to ensure that opinions expressed are backed up by facts, reviews are by their nature an informed opinion, not a definitive verdict. We don't intentionally try to break anything (except locks) but we do try to look for weak points in any design. The overall score is not just an average of the other scores: it reflects both a product's function and value – with value determined by how a product compares with items of similar spec, quality, and price.

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Craft usually make good stuff, but despite excellent build quality their Performance Bike Bib Shorts have some major flaws.

At £70 the Performance Bikes are in a competitive price bracket, with dhb's Aeron range and Endura's FS260 Pro II shorts leading the pack. They certainly look the part, with angled leg panels, subtle changes in colour and a flashy, technical pad that's labelled up like a cow in a butcher's shop poster. Build quality is excellent, with flatlocked seams, tight stitching and a reflective logo on each leg.

Sadly the designer has clearly been taking advice from Mr Shaun William Ryder because the shorts are definitely a loose fit. The legs panels don't support at all and there are wrinkly bits around the seat area that just don't feel right. I like shorts that make me feel like I'm strapped into a go-faster technical garment. I don't really want them to feel like a pair of my mother's big pants. I tried a size L and they fitted well enough, it's the cut that's wrong.

For me it's the pad that really lets the shorts down though. With multiple sections of varying foam density it looks great but there's a huge snag. The middle line of the pad is very wide and made of the thinnest foam. As a result the whole pad folds in half while you're wearing the shorts giving a perma-wedgie that is incredibly annoying. It's worse off the bike, but even in the saddle it niggles, irritates and generally spoils the ride.

I could be charitable and suggest that it's just one of those things, and that they just don't suit my body shape but I've tried more than my fair share of shorts over the years and these are the only ones that I've had this problem with.

Despite the quality, these are destined to spend their days at the bottom of my drawer, only coming out when everything else is in the wash, which is a real pity.


Quality construction but poor performance and fit test report

Make and model: Craft Performance Bike Bib Shorts

Size tested: Black, 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?

Sad lack of marketing blurb on Craft's website.

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

Thin polyamide shell fabric with channel structure in the seat area for cooling, durability and moisture transport

Body control fabric with 4 way stretch

Ergonomically placed seams follow the anatomy of the moving body

Elastic leg endings with silicone print on the inside for a secure fit

Smooth and durable flat lock seams

Reflective prints for extra visibility

Craft Performance Pad

Inseam: 25cm, 10"

Rate the product for quality of construction:

No grumbles about construction - these are a quality pair of shorts in that respect.

Rate the product for performance:

They lose points for the slightly baggy fit and that annoying pad.

Rate the product for durability:
Rate the product for comfort, if applicable:

Off the bike the constant pad wedgie is hugely annoying. On the bike it's still very irritating.

Rate the product for value:

Quality is good, but performance doesn't justify this kind of money.

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

Not so great. I won't be reaching for these in a hurry.

Tell us what you particularly liked about the product

Build quality

Tell us what you particularly disliked about the product

Constant wedgie from the folding pad and the loose cut.

Did you enjoy using the product? No

Would you consider buying the product? No

Would you recommend the product to a friend? No

Anything further to say about the product in conclusion?

Quality shorts let down by awful pad and baggy cut.

Overall rating: 4/10

About the tester

Age: 42  Height: 5' 8  Weight: er....85kg

I usually ride: Kona Dew Drop, Dawes Century SE, Carlton Corsa  My best bike is: Guess SC1 scandium

I've been riding for: Over 20 years  I ride: Most days  I would class myself as: Experienced

I regularly do the following types of riding: time trialling, commuting, general fitness riding, fixed/singlespeed, Audax and long distance solo rides


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Joselito | 11 years ago

Sadly. the designer has clearly been taking advice from Mr Shaun William Ryder because the shorts are definitely a loose fit.
Good, good, good, good, good, Double double good, double, double good.

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