Tested: Aerostich AD1 Light overtrousers.
Where: Spain, Morocco, Ireland; wherever it’s cold and wet.
Price: $367 from Aerostich.
Weight 1220g + armour. Available in grey, black and tan.
See also: Rukka PVC onesie.
What they say:
Perfect for dual-sport, adventure, touring and daily riding. Fully seam taped, unlined, HT200D Nylon GORE-TEX® jeans-cut pant with full length separating side zips inner and outer weather flaps to help the pants go on and off fast yet keep rain and wind out.
What I think
• Usual excellent Aero taped-seam quality
• Easy to put on and take off
• The right amount of useful pockets
• Great contoured cut; don’t feel bulky
• Breath well and waterproof so far
• Long, but OK because ankle can be cinched in
• No fancy washing requirements
About time I reviewed my Aerostich AD1 Light pants. They’re pitched as lighter weight 200D Cordura Gore-tex overtrousers; less stiff to suit the occasional rider rather than ice-road commuters who’ll want Dariens or Roadcrafters in heavyweight 500D; two names which helped make Aerostich’s name in the US among Iron-Butt long-haul pros. Riding hard, fast and often, a 500D Roadcrafter is the best thing for 85-mph slides down the highway.
But who does that any more? Indeed, unlike many riders it seems, I rarely wear overtrousers at all, unless it’s actually pouring or very chilly. I don’t mind getting wet legs if the end is nigh, but when it isn’t I like the fact that I’m tucked, zipped, studded and velcro’d into my AD1s. Strict trademark laws make casual use of the V-word forbidden in the US. Jeez – and I thought I making a quick joke! Looks like I guessed right: in the US they must say ‘hook-and-loop’ which rolls off the tongue like a mouthful of old wool.
On me the AD1s fit is just right: comfy and unobtrusive – as high praise as you can bestow on motorcycle clobber. You don’t feel like you’re schlepping around in a pair of baggy, swish-swooshing bin bags. The curved cut of the double-stitched seat and knees all help, and Aerostich do go out of their way to give you more than just S, M, L and XL. With their detailed sizing chart (right) you have little excuse to not get the right fit.
No complaints with breathability or waterproofing either – legs don’t really sweat or get cold. But when they do, one of the best things is the ADs are easy to put on and take off; a big incentive when you really ought to pull over and do one or the other but don’t want to faff about or risk tripping over, banging your head on your rocker cover and waking up in a hospital corridor.
What you get
I chose my ADs in ‘long’ to get right down over the boot. They have two-way 47-inch zips right down the outside of each leg, so if you want to vent you can modulate down from waist or up from ankle (or just use Twitter like everyone else). At the top you can also reset the waist circumference with studs by an inch on each side (right). I have my 38″ Ls on the bigger setting and there’s a short elastic triangle at the back to take up the slack when lunch catches you with your trousers down. The zips have a full length rain flap of course and at the ankles have a big reflective panel (above left) allowing you to pull them in over boots or whatever. I find this is also useful in taking some of the 1220-g weight off the waist, especially as they’re so long (on my 38 Ls the inside leg is 34″). I wish my Klim Outriders did that (before I got it done myself). This support also avoids the need for braces.
You’re in Aero-Land so you know there’ll be a few pockets knocking about. Left thigh has a 8 x 7-inch velcro™ flap pocket with more v*****™ over the top to take a map pocket. On the other thigh is a same-sized pocket with a water-repellant side zipper. At the hips are two more velcro™ flap pockets and there’s another v-free open pocket at the back, plus a cunning, easily missed SAS-style zipped stash belt (right).
I’m not a great fan of the bulky TF3 Aero-armour (left), even if it might be technically better than slimmer examples like D30 (right) which will attach to the velcro™ inside the knee, or ForceField lattice armour which won’t. Knee pads are handy for kneeling by the bike of course, not just crashing. There’s more you-know-what™ along the sides of the waist hem and inside the shins, for more armour perhaps.
Recent trips have included coming back across close-to-freezing then rainy Spain in December, and a dawn-to-dusk mid-summer ride up the British Isles (right) where in June the chances of rain are high.
On both occasions the AD1s did the job unobtrusively, keeping the chill out, the rain off and the stuff in [the many pockets]. A classic unfussy and functional design as you’d expect from Aerostich, and quite probably comparable with any other high-end membrane rainwear out there.
Thanks for the pants, Aerostich