The key to this piece is the fabric that was developed for use by U.S. Special Forces with a simple objective: eliminate the need of adding or dropping layers during dynamic and static activities. We saw this as a solution to the cyclists layering problem. The fabric technology also allows for the transport of moisture without getting cold; so, unlike your puffy down jacket, this vest will keep you warm when moisture is involved.
We gave the shell of this piece a C6 DWR water resistant treatment. This allows water to bead up and keeps the surface of the piece from becoming saturated with moisture.
First off, I’m a medium/large torso (5’10” 165lbs.) The medium was too slim for me but the large fits perfect. And by perfect I mean the ideal piece for layering over a base, T-shirt, jacket etc. The vest is bomb proof durable and equally at home on the trail for cold shadow hour runs as well as the office beforehand. Love the collar and the hidden magnet closure at the neck is just one of the endless details that give Kitsbow their legend status level 11 for gear.
Pros: The fit is excellent (I went up one size from normal) Breathes surprisingly well Stylish enough to wear on/off the bike Cons: Operating the tiny zipper with gloves is a bit of a pain The back pocket is too small for most modern cell phones
Size: Size med is a little short but otherwise fits me great. I'm 6'1" 155-160 and slim in the torso. Style: 5 stars. Looks awesome. Function: Great for temps from high 20s to mid 40s depending what you put under it. Breaths well & has a little water resistance. Does not inhibit mobility even with technical riding. I particularly like: the collar to keep my neck warm, the magnets in addition to zipper so it snaps all the way shut when zippering one handed, the pockets are easy to get into and close securely while riding. I don't like the lack of more rear pocket access. I want to use this for 3+ hr rides and I don't want to wear a pack with it. There is not enough space for my smartphone + nutrition + packable rain/windbreaker + a couple small tools. Usually these would all fit in my rear jersey pockets but because the Arcana fits so slim (which I like in many ways) you can't access pockets in a jersey underneath it while on the go. It's a nitpick, but I way I think it could be improved upon. Overall: a great addition to my cold-cool weather riding attire. Versatile. Needs more pocket space if going to use on longer rides.
I’ve been looking for something like this for a while. Tired of puffy. Well made and looked good. But, sizing feels like it is for a woman. I can wear an XL in most Kitsbow. But this piece, I am sure an XXL would be to small. Too bad, would be a great vest.
I originally ordered a medium but it was too small (I'm 5' 9", between 145 - 150lbs for reference). I exchanged for the large and it is just big enough. Full disclosure, I wear this over a Wabi Woolens winter weight long sleeve cycling jersey. It's not incredibly thick, but it's not thin either so it must change the fit to some extent. The vest is super handy for the varying conditions of my commute. I keep it on top of all the other stuff in my backpack so that I can grab it when conditions change. It's a great addition to my layering system and can be worn unzipped for in between conditions. Even unzipped it doesn't flap around and get in the way. I got my vest on a clear out sale for which there were no returns or exchanges but Kitsbow let me exchange my medium for a large, which was very much appreciated. Very well made piece.