Capsule Review: OMM Rotor Vest

Posted: 07/02/2016 in Uncategorized
Tags: , , , , , , ,

That’s the fella.

It’s a while since I bought much new kit – I’ve got shoes, socks, tights, shorts, tops, wind-proof tops, waterproof tops, a hat, a torch, bags and so on, and to be honest I’m kind of used to it, so don’t feel the need to go out replacing stuff.

However, for a while now, I’ve wanted an insulated best of gilet – partly for running, but also to bolster the warmth of my not-quite-four-season jacket when I’m out and about.

I’ve hummed and hahed, and not found one that was right, but kept running across the OMM Rotor Vest. I tried on the smock (same thing but with arms) a while ago, but it had an odd cut and there seemed to be too much body and not enough arm length for me.

Saying that, I came across the vest version at the same time, and thought it looked canny. So when I found I could get one at a discount when my local running/outdoor shop was looking to reduce stock ahead of refurbishment, I parted with my pounds to find out it would work out.

The first thing to note is that the extra-long zip on the front is not an extra-long zip, it’s a split zip. The top is a fairly normal zip, the bottom is the entry to a tiny pocket, which doubles as a stuff sack. The join looks to be a thick line of stitching, and I ended up getting the XL rather than the L simply because it was a tight fit over my head on the L and I figured that line wouldn’t last long. On the XL, the zip opening was just longer enough to fit without getting taut.

I could have got away with the body fit on the L, though it was pretty snug, the XL had a bit of room to move. I can’t imagine I’ll be wearing more than a base layer below, so I don’t know I’ll need much more space.

This afternoon, I headed out for a check – it was cold, windy and I had a long sleeve base, tights and the Rotor on for. Bit of warmth and wind protection. The outer material is Point Zero, which feels silky to the touch and which is wind proof. The fill is Primaloft Gold.

The little lower zip opens providing venting if needed – pretty good for me as I get hot around the exact spot. I had it open some of the time closed other and with a it of judicious top-zip action I never overheated. The bottom of the vest has an elastic aged draw cord, which would be pretty useful in colder conditions, though I didn’t feel the need – there were a couple of times in the gusto we parts of the run where I got a blast of chilly air up the back or through the arms, but they were few and far between and I didn’t stay cold for more than a second. Overall, the Point Zero did the job and I didn’t feel the wind penetrating the material at all.

I tend to find my forearms are like radiators – they need to be kept able to breath or they just sweat the heat away, and for me the vest is a great design, and teamed with a waterproof for rain I think it would work well in anything up to a proper freeze. The Primaloft Gold gave just the right level of heat retention for a run on a chilly, gusty February afternoon.

One run in and I’m impressed, it fills a hole between a wind-proof top and a long-sleeve insulated top like my Inov-8 insulated top. Once I’ve had more of a play with it I’ll try and update this capsule review, but so far it’s a nice piece of kit.


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