Stadler Force Pro

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by expatbrit, Nov 27, 2012.

  1. expatbrit

    expatbrit Still pretty much a n00b.

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    So much gear, so many threads; here's mine.

    I've been on a quest for waterproof, vented, protective gear that fits. I live in the desert, but apparently I'm absolutely unable to get rain gear out and put it on in time -- and I can't find rain gear that fits anyway. One or two close encounters with hypothermia convinced me that I should wear rain gear -- and I still don't So waterproof in the outer shell, and I'll suffer being hot. In the hottest days down here, there's mesh gear.

    It'd be relatively easy if it wasn't for the fact that I'm a bloody mutant; 6'7 and I've managed to get my weight down under 200lbs again (and I was 230 at my heaviest ever) with disproportionately long arms and short stubby legs. I've tried various brands and never found anything that actually fit me (the Kilimanjaro I've been riding in I swim in the chest and belly, and the arms are only just long enough). BMW stuff is close, but still too big by the time it fits my 7' wingspan. 'American-fit' gear is right out.

    OK -- so Aerostitch. Except I'm too far outside the norm to adjust to fit, dammit. \ And inner rain liners? No thanks. That ruled out the Spidi 'slim', though it was damn close. Rev'it doesn't fit and doesn't make talls. Rukka's the same.

    Stumbling around on here, I found Stadler (http://www.stadler-bekleidung.de/). Feedback was good, their stuff was good, and then someone said that they did custom. Gore-tex Pro-shell, decent vents, and custom? It was time to start saving some shekels and ask them how much.

    Unsurprisingly, the answer was 'a lot'. There doesn't seem to be much else out there though that was even going to be close, so I took the plunge. They were absolutely excellent in answering my flood of e-mails, questions, and helping me sort through their products and get the right one -- and when I was on the fence between the Track Pro (leather and cordura) or the Force Pro (super fabric and cordura) pushed me towards the latter -- which is actually cheaper. They sent out a sheet, got a slew of my measurements, and determined that I was going to have to have custom. (This is my shocked face, typing).

    I ended up ordering the Force Pro jacket and Ace Pro trousers. They break my 'no black in NM' rule, but I decided I could live with that.

    Once we got that out of the way, and sent off the bank transfer, it was time to settle in and wait. Buying stuff from Germany was less difficult than I expected, with the exception of the aforementioned bank transfer. No credit card here, so the money got shuffled off and over.

    They were bang on on their manufacturing time; 10 weeks was what I was told and it was just under that. So at the end of September it was shipping out, supposedly to be in my hot little hands in 10 days or so. That, of course, was not to be -- 2 months to the day later, I finally got the little notice in the mail saying that they were awaiting my signature for collection. That was yesterday, so this morning I went to pick the stuff up.

    First -- the gear itself. It has GREAT SWATHES of superfabric. The entire outside of the arm, a significant proportion of the back of the jacket, portions of the chest. The knees of the pants, the hips -- all the key slide areas. The rest is high density cordura, along with keprotec stretch panels for comfort. It has chest and underarm vents (my preferred configuration), with the former being backed by a 3D panel to ensure that the airflow isn't stopped. Rather than just zippering open, they have a pull back and snap open panel that exposes a relatively small area. I've ridden in over 100 degrees in my Kili with a lesser vent system and survived, so I'm not too worried about it, except for the black. We'll find out how that does next May. The trousers have a Gore Lock-out as a vent on the calves, so we'll see how that works. The armour is Knox and SAS-TEC, with a solid back protector (HOORAY) as well as the usual elbow, shoulder, hip, and knee. There's a relatively limited amount of reflective piping; I'll get some pics later and add them to this.

    Stitching and manufacturing appears to be great -- as you'd expect from the price, which is WELL into the Rukka ballpark (though cheaper than the Armas). It's surprisingly light and flexible, and full of nice 'attention to detail', from a hold back snap on the collar to concealed adjusters for the arms.

    It even looks pretty good on; no more dork in an inflatable jacket look, at least for now.


    It's amazing how nice it is to have gear that fits. It moves well, and they got it right first time, out of the box. Armour that stays in place and doesn't flop around. There's enough space in there for a heated vest, which will pair well with my EXO2 gillet for the cold days. It's reassuring to have a decent back protector, so I don't wear my track one (which I am admittedly terrible at). There's a 300 degree zipper between jacket and trousers, so I anticipate it working well as the temperature continues to drop.

    Of course, I haven't got to ride in it yet, other than to drop the Mutley at the stealership because the radiator decided it was more of a sprayer than a cooling device.

    Photos and more to follow.
    #1
  2. levain

    levain STILL Jim Williams

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    Yes. Pictures please!
    #2
  3. BeachMoto

    BeachMoto Been here awhile

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    You will love it. I have had an Airgate Pro (fortunately off the rack size fits me) for the past 6 months and it is AWESOME!
    #3
  4. levain

    levain STILL Jim Williams

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    How's the venting on it? The only thing I'd trade my Rukka Armas for is a suit of comparable build with venting. It seems like the Stadler suits all have quite a bit more venting than the Armas does.
    #4
  5. BeachMoto

    BeachMoto Been here awhile

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    The venting is great. The goretex fabric panels covering the large chest mesh vent panels are removable. There are small vent tubes that run horizontally from the mesh panels to under the arms, pushing air all around the chest and back. There are also two under arm zip vents.

    I rode in 119 degree temps across Kansas this past summer and the jacket was great.

    I have a Rukka Armas too. The fabric on the Stadler feels more flexible and softer but as you know Rukka is very uncomfortable above 80 deg. I switched to the Rukka last week when temps here dropped below 60 or so.

    I may end up selling the Rukka but I love the elastic inner cuffs, they help a lot in the cold weather. I can get away with shorter gloves since cold air going up the sleeve is no longer an issue.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
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  6. kevinj

    kevinj Been here awhile

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    Glad you found gear that fits. Sounds like it was quite an endeavour.

    I'd also love to see pics and hear more about how the gear holds up. We don't get many Stadler reviews on this site so you are in the position to make a valuable contribution :).
    #6
  7. expatbrit

    expatbrit Still pretty much a n00b.

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    There's advantages to being mutant tall. They do not include 'finding gear'

    Finally! A contribution. :)

    Actually, I was surprised how few reviews there were. They're great people to deal with, and price-wise (given the Euro) very comparable with Rukka (until you add the custom fitting for me, of course). It doesn't have all the high-tech (Outlast, massive use of Armacor, etc, but it's right in the ballpark with the superfabric, proshell, etc.

    I should get some photos at least of it laid out today.
    #7
  8. levain

    levain STILL Jim Williams

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    Any chance of a separate post on the Airgate Pro? I've read about those vent tubes, but couldn't figure out how they worked, and well they sound a little like marketing bs. Happy to read that they actually perform as expected!
    I don't know why Rukka refuses to put any venting on their suits:huh
    #8
  9. expatbrit

    expatbrit Still pretty much a n00b.

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    Pics time. (After a quick resize, since dropping 3000x4000 images into this seemed a touch anti-social).

    Back of the jacket. Note the large area of superfabric. This also defines the areas of the back protector, fairly much -- it's pretty large and makes me feel significantly happier than the small piece of foam in other jackets I've owned. Also note the Scotchlite piping around this area, and the superfabric down the entire outside of the arms and over the shoulders -- all major abrasion zones.

    [​IMG]

    Close up of the arms, showing the 'concealed' adjusters.

    [​IMG]

    Only two external pockets. I'm not a fan of the 'adventure' jacket with pockets everywhere. I either never use them or I stuff things on them, forget, and can't find them again. (While looking ridiculous with random bulges in various places). The only thing I use it for is stashing a camera while riding, so we'll see how that works. Note the 'zipper garage' at the top of the pocket, for protection.

    [​IMG]

    Chest vent, and superfabric panel:

    Closed:

    [​IMG]

    Open:

    [​IMG]

    Back, showing the 'air-pipe' system. (I think). Basically this should hold the vent away from the skin, and let air flow. I'll figure this out in 6 months:

    [​IMG]

    We'll see how much air this actually flows. There's also an underarm vent.

    While it's still unseasonably warm here, I'm sure I'll be using the quilted liner. It zips around the entire jacket, has it's own separate zipper fastener as well over the front. I tend to wear liners zipper there in general, rather than fastened to the jacket so that's nice.

    [​IMG]

    Front view. Superfabric, vents, and not a full 3/4 jacket but longer than a 'sport' one. There's a 300 degree zip to the matching pants.

    [​IMG]
    #9
  10. expatbrit

    expatbrit Still pretty much a n00b.

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    Also note the dog hair. Apparently this will show. :)
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  11. expatbrit

    expatbrit Still pretty much a n00b.

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    Here's the 'rear view' of the trousers:

    [​IMG]

    See the superfabric in the seat, and the additional 'grip' panels just below those. There's also keprotec stretch panels for flexibility. Also note the zips at the base to get over the boots; this just opens up as a gusset. (There's a similar one on the sleeve of the jacket that I forgot to photograph.) This works in conjunction with a velcro tab to give a set and forget option. I'm used to overpants with long zips, so this takes a bit more work to get on over my Vendramini boots.



    Gore-tex lockout closure as a vent on the calf:

    [​IMG]

    front view; super fabric on knees as an abrasion zone.

    [​IMG]
    #11
  12. expatbrit

    expatbrit Still pretty much a n00b.

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    And wearing it:

    [​IMG]
    #12
  13. C/1/509

    C/1/509 Long timer

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    Let us know how it works.
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  14. Bazgab

    Bazgab Been here awhile

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    That suit looks great, I am greatly interested in any more user impressions once you get some time with it. Stadler is at the top of my list now for my next gear purchase.
    #14
  15. totomoto

    totomoto Been here awhile

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    Do you have cats? Other wise the combo looks good!
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  16. CharlieFox

    CharlieFox Been here awhile

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    What was the reason for choosing different models for the jacket and pants?

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  17. expatbrit

    expatbrit Still pretty much a n00b.

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    A dog. Apparently, the black cordura both attracts his fur and shows it. Oh well.
    #17
  18. expatbrit

    expatbrit Still pretty much a n00b.

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    There isn't a 'Force Pro' in the trousers; they have the Ace Pro, Flex Pro, and Race Pro. The Ace Pro are the 'matching' set for the Force Pro, with the same fabrics. (Goretex ProShell, Cordura, and Superfabric). It's what the Stadler customer service recommended as a pairing -- the Flex Pros are armacor and cordura, and are a match for the Airgate Pro, the Race Pros leather and cordura and go with the Track Pro jacket.

    They also have the lockout vent in the calf, which should extend their wear and make them more comfortable in hotter weather on trips, I hope.
    #18
  19. CharlieFox

    CharlieFox Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the explanation.

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  20. UAS

    UAS Been here awhile

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    Nice write up and it all sounds and looks very nice. Oh, dog hair in our house...not just a condiment...:D
    #20