design headquarters are located in Squamish, British Columbia, a part of the world that sees more than its fair share of rainy weather, with up to 90 inches of liquid sunshine falling every year. Given that fact, it only makes sense that 7mesh's first entry into the world of cycling apparel would be a high-end rain jacket. Constructed from Gore-Tex's Pro fabric, which was originally developed for mountaineers who wanted a waterpoof and breathable fabric that was capable of surviving the harshest conditions, the Revelation jacket was tailored specifically for cycling, with a unique fit that's unlike anything else on the market.
At 283 grams (actual), the Revelation jacket is quite light, especially considering that 7mesh have managed to include two decent sized zippered side pockets, zippered side and forearm vents, along with a detachable hood. The hood is designed to be worn under, rather than over, a helmet, in order to ensure it stays in place no matter how nasty the weather or the terrain. All of the seams are fully taped, and YKK water resistant zippers are used throughout. Sizes: XS-XL. MSRP: $450 USD. www.7meshinc.comThe hood is designed to be worn under a helmet, and attaches with three small snaps. 7mesh haven't skimped on the little details, like a fleece lined collar and a zipper garage to protect your neck. Fit and Function
When I first put the Revelation jacket on, I was struck by just how different the fit was - the fabric was snug around the upper chest, yet loose around my shoulder blades and lats. However, as soon as I hopped on a bike it all made sense. The forward leaning position that's inherent with cycling created room in the upper chest, and decreased the looseness in the shoulders, making the jacket feel like it was tailor made for my body. There was no excess fabric flapping around, and there was plenty of freedom of movement, enough to navigate tight, twisting trails that demanded extra body motion without feeling encumbered. Although I didn't use it that often, preferring to rely on my helmet to block a good portion of the rain, the Revelation's detachable hood does fit well under a helmet without being obtrusive or making it hard to turn your head from side to side.
Mother Nature provided plenty of chances to test the Revelation against every style of precipitation imaginable, with conditions ranging from the ever-present 'light rain mist' to full-on deluges of Biblical proportions. No matter what was falling from the sky, the jacket repelled it without ever becoming soaked through. The Gore-Tex Pro fabric breathes very well, and I was impressed by how dry the inside of the jacket stayed, even during long, strenuous climbs where there wasn't much air circulation. It is possible to overwhelm the fabric's transpiration capabilities, especially on warmer days, which would cause the jacket to feel a bit clammy and saturated, although this was a much less common occurrence than with other rain jackets I've worn, and would dissipate quickly once the amount of airflow increased.
Being able to keep the elements out is all well and good, but durability is also a crucial consideration for mountain biking apparel, and this is where the Revelation shines. In addition to subjecting the jacket to the usual wear and tear that comes from brushing against tree branches and blackberry bushes, I unfortunately also had two large crashes during the testing period, one of which had me skittering and bouncing on my side over a section of frozen roots, and the other involving an off-kilter landing and a subsequent rag-dolling through the rocks and dirt. I didn't quite make it out unscathed, but the jacket did, without the slightest rip to be found, a testament to just how tear and abrasion resistant the fabric is. Forearm vents and side vent help with temperature regulation, although the side vents can be tricky to use with a pack on.Issues
When wearing a hydration pack, access to the side vents is difficult, especially if you're trying to quickly open them to dump some heat while still on the bike. The extra little bit of resistance created by the water resistant zippers doesn't help matters either, making one handed operation tricky. If they were positioned slightly higher this wouldn't be an issue, and I doubt that the there would be a noticeable difference in the amount of ventilation. Also, the wrist opening is on the small side, and isn't elasticized in any way, which can make it challenging to take off the jacket with gloves on, even with the velcro closure fully undone. A small detail, but for those times when you start getting that feeling of overheating accompanied by a twinge of claustrophobia, a clear signal that shedding a layer quickly is crucial, it'd be nice to be able to keep your gloves on while doing so. Pinkbike's Take:
|It may sound strange, but it seems as if 7mesh have made the Revelation jacket a bit too cycling-specific. The way that the Revelation is tailored makes the fit less than ideal for anything other than actually riding, since the tightness around the shoulders feels awkward when you're off the bike. If it were more multi-purpose, a shell that could be used for other sports like skiing, backpacking, or even just making a run to the grocery store on a rainy day, it'd be slightly easier to justify the asking price, although any way you look at it, $450 is a hefty sum for a rain jacket that's made in China. However, that doesn't mean the Revelation should be completely written off - the durability and actual construction are top notch, which could make this a worthy option for someone who's tired of going through a jacket (or two) every single season. If you're continually finding yourself staring at scraps of shredded nylon, purchasing something that's more expensive, but also more durable, could be the way to go. - Mike Kazimer|
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