Ibex Breakaway II Jacket Review

April 18, 2014
Ibex Breakaway II Jacket
Ibex_Breakaway_Bike_Test
Ibex Breakaway II Jacket Ibex_Breakaway_Bike_Test
GEAR INSTITUTE RATINGS
80
Weather Resistance
6
Breathability
9
Mobility & Comfort
8
Weight
5
Attention to Detail
8
Value
4

The Good

  • Warm for the weight
  • Super-breathable
  • Excellent mobility and stretch

The Bad

  • Expensive
  • Absorbed more wetness than comparable synthetic jackets
THE VERDICT

The Ibex Breakaway II’s stretch-woven nylon/wool shell shed early-morning mists easily. The Breakaway II became my go-to piece for cool-weather cycling. Ibex blends unmatched breathability and streamlined warmth in an understated active softshell.

ITEM DESCRIPTION

The Ibex Breakaway II is a stretch-woven nylon/wool softshell jacket.

FULL REVIEW

Weather Protection 
While its nylon shell holds its own against early-morning mistiness, and its wooly lining holds an impressive amount of heat, the Ibex Breakaway II couldn’t fend off much in the way of actual weather. On the plus side, this jacket felt pretty comfy even when it got soaked!

Breathability 
Since I tend to be moving pretty quickly whilst outdoors, I’ll take superior breathability over superior weatherproofness any day. The breezy breathiness of the Breakaway II was really only a liability on fast, cold-weather bike descents; I otherwise loved its best-in-class vapor-permeability.

Mobility/Comfort 
Experienced wool-wearers may notice the subtly coarser feel of rambouillet wool compared to merino; I did not feel that it compromised the jacket’s comfort at all. Uniform stretchiness throughout also contributed to high scores here.

Weight
There were neither extraneous bits nor useless bobs anywhere on the Breakaway II, but wool ain’t all that light. Nearly a full pound may be a reasonable weight for a wool jacket, but it looked a bit hefty among the other aerobic jackets here.

Attention to Detail
I noticed and appreciated that both textiles Ibex used (both their double-weave and plain wool) had very similar stretch characteristics – while this may seem like a minor point, it’s one that too many designers overlook. My only complaint was with the hem-adjust cord-lock that lacked the tiny tether that would have made it one-hand operable.

Value
Despite its excellent design and workmanship, its Canadian origins, and the luxurious feel of its fabrics, I felt that $275 was a little spendy for this jacket.

 


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