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Kalf Zero waterproof gloves review

20 Mar 2020
Verdict:

Great at keeping your hands warm and dry although sizing seemed strange and dexterity limited

Cyclist Rating: 
For 
Warm • Waterproof
Against 
Strange sizing • Limited dexterity

Kalf is a relatively new brand on the scene and one that I grew fond of quite quickly and so I was eagerly looking forward to using the Kalf Zero waterproof gloves.

In its first drop a few years ago, I reviewed the brand’s short sleeve windproof jersey and bibtights and was incredibly impressed. Quality and performance-wise, Kalf's kit really stood up to more established brands and seemingly at a much more respectable cost. And, I must admit, I was particularly attracted to the iridescent branding used.

So on receipt of the gloves I had high hopes, so the question is: did the Kalf Zero waterproof gloves meet my expectations?

Buy the Kalf Zero waterproof gloves from Evans Cycles here

Warm and waterproof

It’s been quite a terrible winter, hasn’t it? Lots of rain, copious amounts of wind and cold temperatures. Without the right kit choice, cycling has literally been unbearable for me at times.

Luckily, with the Kalf Zero gloves, one of my key extremities, my hands, were kept suitably wrapped up throughout winter.

The inner Thinsulate wadding is soft against my hands and does just the job at protecting me from the bite of the cold. It was also helped along by a long cuff that could easily tuck underneath a jacket and provide an added section of protection from the cold.

For me, personally, I found them a little too warm but, then again, I have incredibly sweaty, warm hands. However, when I allowed my father to commute to and from work in these gloves for a week, he couldn’t speak highly enough about their insulating properties. So a big tick there.

Another tick is the waterproof properties. You must be wary of some products that claim to be ‘waterproof’ as they are often just one heavy shower away from being disproved. But with Kalf’s Zero gloves, I’m happy to report this is not the case.

In the light rain, the kind that soaks you through, the Nylon-mix hands and neoprene cuff acted as a perfect deterrent from moisture and for the heavier showers, it proved impermeable, too.

The same fleece inner that keeps you warm also does a good job at keeping the hands comfortable. It’s soft and causes no irritation and when leaning hard on the bars out of the saddle it even provides a touch of cushioning.

Sizing woes

However, what you may find is that the sizing comes up a little strange because despite being a glove, they didn’t really fit like one.

I tested a medium which according to the size chat is suited for a palm 8.5cm in width. Yet, for my 9cm-wide palms, this was still too big. As were the fingers, too, which seem very wide even on my sausage-like mitts. It was even to a point where the glove would move free of my hand causing the glove to twist and contort at times. If I sized down to a small, these issues would have likely been solved but I’d have been quite away from the size guide provided by Kalf.

Buy the Kalf Zero waterproof gloves from Evans Cycles here

And this weird sizing issue also seemed to cause an issue with dexterity.

These are pretty heavy duty gloves - for the darkest winter commutes and coldest, wettest days - so I expected them to have a pretty bulky feel, akin to a ski glove but not to the extent I discovered.

While braking wasn’t a problem, changing gear was, especially when riding with electronic gears which are notably more sensitive. I couldn’t really tell if I was clicking through the gear and had to rely on my pedal stroke getting easier or harder to really inform me if I had clicked through.

While bright orange may clash with much of my kit, I was not too miffed by Kalf’s colour choice for the Zero gloves.

Buy the Kalf Zero waterproof gloves from Evans Cycles here

Correctly coloured

So many brands use plain old black which while looking cool, is useless for keeping you seen by motorists. The orange used by Kalf is bright and easy to see while the 3M strip across the back of the hand reflects light that turns you into a shining signalling beacon when indicating to turn.

At £40, the Kalf Zero waterproof gloves make par among their competitors. Proviz retails its waterproof gloves at the same price while Gore’s C5 gloves are retailing at £43 currently. Kalf’s option is also £10 cheaper than Castelli’s Perfetto gloves and a full 50 per cent cheaper than Rapha’s opposite number.

So as a comparison, Kalf’s pricing seems to be bang on and just right for the consumer.

Summary

In conclusion, I do like these Kalf Zero waterproof gloves. When it comes to keeping out the winter elements, they do the trick. It’s just that issue of fit, I cannot get my head around it.

But with fit being such a personal thing, I could easily see it not being an issue for many other riders and these actually being the perfect option for many, many foul-weather riders.

Price: 
£40

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