Bikerumor Review: Zoic Loudan Short and Guru Freeride Jersey

zoic-clothing-review09-cover

I’ve been kickin’ it in the new Zoic Loudan Shorts and Guru Jersey for a few months and really like them.  The Loudan shorts are from their Streetside collection of casual cycling and commuter clothes, while the Guru 3/4 sleeve jersey is from their Mountain Bike collection.  Both are great, and the shirt works just as well for moderate temp riding around town as it does on hot days on the trail.

If you’re looking for some comfy, durable threads, read on.  Both are made with Bamboo, and thus far the jersey has proven to be quite durable against tree wrecks and kept at bay the “perma-funk” that plagues so many synthetic materials.  (there’s a pic of the unscathed Guru and the very scathed skin after the break)

The shorts have some of the best pockets ever for holding stuff securely while pedaling without awkward bouncing or pulling.  After spinning around in them since about May, it’s obvious Zoic knows how to build cycling-specific garb.

Hit ‘more’ to read the full review…

zoic-clothing-review09-30

ZOIC LOUDAN SHORTS:

The Loudan Short is a new style for 2009. They’re made with Zoic’s ‘Environmentally Enlightened’ fabric, which is a 50/50 blend of Bamboo and Cotton. The fabric feels amazing…super soft without being thick, durable without feeling heavy. In fact, they feel really light on, and they flow really well when pedaling. I wore them during the Goldschprintz in Atlanta (video here) and managed to tie pro rider Thomas Turner wearing them…so if they can handle 120+ rpm pedaling, they’ll likely work just fine for any sort of casual or mountain bike riding you’d normally wear them for.

They feature a double snap / zipper fly closure with an internal drawstring.  There are belt loops, too, but the drawstring was all I used.

zoic-clothing-review09-22

The pockets are great for riding, too. There’s a large zippered, flap covered pocket on the right leg for wallets or MP3 players. They have a nice rubber grip to grab, and a headphone cord port at the top of the pocket with a loop near the top of the short to keep the cord under control.

zoic-clothing-review09-29zoic-clothing-review09-27

On the left leg, there’s a thinner zippered pocket that holds a cell phone perfectly. My iPhone fits perfectly and never jostled around uncomfortably when riding. I use a smaller credit card sized wallet that’s about 1/2″ thick with cards, ID and business cards, and I could easily fit both that and the phone in the pocket without it seeming bulky or awkward when walking around or riding.

zoic-clothing-review09-25

The muted Black Olive color goes with just about any T-shirt I’ve got (and I have way too many), and after numerous washings, they still look fresh. The washings, however, bring out the only two things I don’t like about the shorts. 1) The drawstring comes out of the shorts every wash. Every. Single. Time. I even tried snapping the shorts shut and tying the string before washing. Still came out. It’s not terribly hard to feed it back through, but that’s five minutes of my life that I could be posting something to Bikerumor. The second thing is that the pocket flaps on the rear pockets curl up as they come out of the dryer (shown in one of the pics above).

Loudan Short Features:

  • 12″ inseam with a flat front waistband and an integrated drawcord for adjustability
  • Streetside fly with zip and double snap front closure
  • Tagless waistline
  • Tonal stitch details
  • 2 Back flap pockets
  • Left sunglasses pocket
  • ZOIC grommet for MP3 pocket and headphone accessability
  • MP3 cord loop
  • Signature “Diamond Gusset” for superior range of motion
  • Environmentally Enlightened
  • MSRP: $60
  • Colors: Black Olive (tested, Large) or Grape Leaf, which are very similar in shade.
  • Sizes: S, M, L, XL, XXL, 3XL

Bikerumor Rating: Zoic Loudan Shorts:

I really liked these shorts and wear them frequently.  They’re light and cool in the Summer, move well and look good.  Normally, I’m not a fan of the fancy stitching and detail fabrics, but I actually kind of like it on these.  The enviro cred from the Bamboo is nice, and it lends the fabric a smooth feel. As mentioned, the only real complaint I have is the drawstring coming out during every wash…If Zoic fixed that, they’d have a perfect pair of shorts on their hands.  With that in mind, I’d give them 4.5 Thumbs Up.

bikerumor-thumbsup-4-5

BIKERUMOR GURU 3/4 SLEEVE JERSEY

zoic-clothing-review09-20

The Zoic Guru is their ‘Freeride’ jersey from their men’s Mountain Bike Collections.  It’s a blend of 57% polyester / 43% Bamboo Active Carbon.  Bamboo is a great material for performance fabrics because it has natural anti-microbial properties (unless it’s manufactured as Rayon…interesting bit on Wikipedia about this…but since Zoic’s is not listed as Rayon, we presume it’s made the other way).

Technically, this jersey’s pretty straightforward. The only “feature” is the zippered right sleeve pocket, which has an reinforced headphone cable port on the inside for MP3 players.  The stitching you see on the shoulder is decorative, it’s not holding a second panel of fabric inside.  That said, the fabric is plenty tough…I nailed a tree with my shoulder on a mountain bike ride.  When I say nailed, I mean I had to stop and it almost made me cry.  I had a lump in my throat.  It hurt. Bad.  But, as you can see below, the shirt was unscathed:

zoic-clothing-review09-08

That was almost two months ago, and it left a scar.  Looking at the Guru Jersey, you’d never know it happened.

Several of the rides I tested this jersey on were mid-day Summer mountain bike rides, one of which was about 3-1/2 hours and included 30 minutes of riding home on roads in the direct sun.  Even though it was very warm out, the Guru never felt warm, and it wicked away moisture quickly.  Prior to trying this, I never would have thought a longer sleeve jersey would make any sense, but if you run the risk of falling a lot or need something to cover some light padding but don’t want to overheat, the Guru’s a good choice.

And, even after months of use and washing, it still looks good as new and hasn’t developed any permanent odors like so many other garments.

Features:

  • Tagless neckline
  • Mock crew neck with contrast v-neck binding
  • Contrast stitch detail on sleeves
  • ZOIC screen print on front
  • MP3 pocket with logo’d zipper tape
  • Wicking
  • Anti-microbial
  • (ee) Environmentally Enlightened
  • MSRP: $45.00
  • Colors: Pearl Blue (looks cream), Olivine (0live), Bombay (Orange, tested) and Black Olive (brown)
  • Sizes: S, M, L, XL, XXL

zoic-clothing-review09-13

Bikerumor Rating – Zoic Guru Jersey:

Eco cred, good breathability and durability and (as evidenced below) darn good looking.  What’s not to like?  I give it Five Thumbs Up!

bikerumor-thumbsup-5

Comments

Kristibee - 08/28/09 - 4:05pm

Pertaining to your comment about the wikipedia article on bamboo fabrics, I have to let you know that the bamboo fiber used in these products are processed in the same way rayon is… extruded through nasty chemicals. If they were processed in the same way as linen or hemp they would be noticeably more rough–the same way linen or hemp feels.

oilcanracer - 08/28/09 - 6:04pm

is that guy a giant on a 26″ cruiser bike? or is the bike smaller?

mc - 08/29/09 - 6:30am

Um…you are riding on the road w/out a helmet? Tsk tsk tsk this after giving Obama a hard time for not wearing one while out of a ride with his daughters

Editor - 08/29/09 - 10:01pm

Um…yeah, you got me. In my defense, this was a staged photo just outside our office only for this post.

As for me being a giant or riding a small bike…a little from column A, a little from column B.

SBGrad - 09/02/09 - 6:31pm

Did I miss any mention of a pad with the Loudan shorts? I went to Zoic’s website to find out the info (shorts don’t come with a pad or a liner, provide your own), but this is something that needs prominent mention in any review of street shorts. My apologies if you mentioned it and I missed it.

Editor - 09/02/09 - 11:18pm

No, they don’t include padded shorts on the inside, but there are hook tabs on the sides of the waistband for attaching some of the “liners” that Zoic sells. I think they may have a pair of shorts very similar to the Loudan that do have a padded liner, but not sure what they’re called. They’re on their website.

Post a comment:

Comment sections can be a beautiful source of knowledge, conversation and comedy. They can also get pretty ugly, which is why we've updated our Comments Policy. If your comment isn't showing up or suddenly disappears, you might want to check it out.