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Oneten Altitude bib shorts – review

As Chain Reaction Cycles' in-house brand, Oneten aim to offer good quality kit at a competitive price and the Altitude bib shorts hit the mark. They're not the most sophisticated shorts on the markets but they have a great fit, quality feel and simple styling for everyday use, though the pad is best for shorter rides.

Given the recent spell of sunny, warm weather, these shorts have been out and about exposing my winter (pale) skin. The shorts have an eleven-panel construction and the shaping is spot on, with no crumpled fabric or baggy areas, and the compressive fit offers a good level of support. The shorts sit well when pedalling and when standing up on a climb or sprinting, without the fabric unduly shifting.

The medium weight Lycra mix (220g/m2) fabric gives the shorts some flexibility in terms of warmth and, paired up with leg or knee warmers, they work well for early spring morning rides that stretch through lunchtime, when the sun’s warmed up nicely, or as the evening approaches and the temperature begins to drop again.

The chamois has proved itself to be comfortable, if a little prone to holding on to moisture, but it’s effective and adequate enough for a good few hours in the saddle, though I’d probably choose something else for an all-day ride. The chamois is said to be anti-bacterial and has a ‘3D gel foam’ design. Without pulling the shorts to pieces, its hard to see what this actually is, but the multi-density construction puts extra padding where it’s most needed.

The bib straps are made from light mesh fabric with wide shoulder straps which provide plenty of support and sat well when riding, without bunching or digging in. The mesh continues down to belly button height and the small of the back, and that improves breathability in these areas.

The legs have silicone grippers at the ends which lock the shorts in place effectively, and they haven’t  caused any friction or irritation in use. There is also small nod to visibility with a reflective logo positioned vertically on each lower thigh. Other than that, the styling is simple – all black, which is no bad thing.

Conclusion

With a good fit and competitive price point, Oneten Altitude bib shorts offer plenty for the money. The chamois may not be the best for long rides but the shorts have still performed admirably and would serve as a reliable, workhorse piece of kit for commuting or training.

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