Stocking filler prices and winter resistant kit tend to catch the eye at this time of year, and a box of goodies just in from Cycle Stuff Direct seems to match those criteria.
Among the range of clothing and accessories on offer are gloves, some commuting overshoes and cheap lights that might help see you through the season. BikeRadar also checked out a pair of affordable helmets that claim decent specs for the spend.
Windproof or waterproof gloves
A Cordura outer makes the Eigo Rogue waterproof glove (RRP £25, currently discounted to £18.74) flexible, and a waterproof membrane is used to keep the water out. There’s a neoprene double cuff and velcro closure, plus reflective piping and a snot wipe.
The Eigo Windster (RRP £16.99, currently discounted to £12.74) is said to keep off plenty of weather, but without taped seams there’s no ‘waterproof’ claim. It has an Amara palm, gel foam padding and a windproof, breathable membrane. It also has a neoprene cuff, terry wipe and reflective piping.
Both gloves are available in sizes from S to XXL.
Eigo’s Windster overshoes share the same breathable membrane as their glove namesakes. They have rubber soles, use a combination of velcro and zip to close and have a £22 price tag, although they’re currently being offered at a discounted price of £16.50.
At £17.99 (current discount to £13.49) the Eigo Neoprene overshoes – in case you hadn’t guessed – are made using neoprene, the fabric most associated with wetsuits. That’s a good start towards keeping you warm in filthy conditions, but getting the stretchiness right was a focus for the designers, who have fitted a waterproof zip up the side, with a hole under your heels for grip off the bike.
Both sets of overshoes come in sizes S to XXL.
Road and commuting lights
If you ride on the road or cycle path, lights are essential at this time of year, and buying a pair of front and rear beams is usually a cheap way to be seen.
Tura’s Force 6 set includes a one watt front light and five LED rear. Both lights have a number of flash/continuous modes, and some side visibility. The pair costs £25 including batteries, with an online discount price of £17.50 at the time of writing.
Elsewhere, the Tura Lizard Mini Safety set comprises a one LED front and one LED rear strap-on lights that accommodate a 31.8mm bar and will fit round some helmet vents. There are flash and continuous modes, and you get a claimed flashing runtime of 70 hours from the two-battery white light. The lights are yours for £10, including batteries (current discounted price £7). A basic water-resistance test of a three-mile ride in lashing rain, plus a return leg in mild drizzle, proved successful.
Road and MTB helmets
Arina helmets are also available from Cycle Stuff Direct. We looked at the Corse (a road lid at the top end of the budget range) and the Spirit (a light trail option).
The Corse has 23 vents, a claimed weight of 255g for the medium with visor (ours was 294g) and an RRP of £54.99 (discounted price £41.24). A firm-feeling click-lock strap and rubberised wheel are used to adjust the fit, and there's some padding on the adjuster. Although it’s marketed primarily for road use, the Corse does include a visor (and plugs for when you’re not using it).
The Spirit, with its more aggressive styling, is designed mainly for mountain biking. It has 19 vents and a claimed weight of 270g for a medium size, including visor (our large weighed 296g). A Slide-Lock adjuster system helps the helmet grip your head with minimum fuss, and the Spirit costs £39.99 (current online price £29.99.
For more information, see the Cycle Stuff Direct website.