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on October 14, 2012
This review is for the Gore Phantom 2.0 Windstopper SO Jacket in Neon Yellow. First of all, I'm 6' 3" and 212 lbs. I ended up ordering the XXL after trying on an XL in-store. The XXL is closer-fitting (not tight) in the shoulders with a little more room everywhere else. Don't think I'd be able to layer anything under the XL so the XXL is perfect for me. As has been mentioned in other reviews, the short jersey sleeves under the long-sleeves are a little tight but not restrictive or uncomfortable at all. Material is soft and the neon yellow is very bright. Zipping on and off the sleeves is relatively easy with two zippers on each side.

During a ride to work last week, I started in the dark with temperatures around 40 degrees. I wore a sleeveless Nike Dri-Fit shirt underneath and a backpack over the top. Stayed warm for the full hour-and-a-half. Looks like mid- to low-30's tomorrow and I'm not going to add anything. I think with a long-sleeved thermal undershirt I'd be good into the 20's. On the ride home, temps were up to about 55 but cooling off. I zipped off the sleeves and was fine as the temperature dropped. The wind-stopping ability is really impressive.

All-in-all, I would highly recommend this jacket.
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on December 17, 2013
I was looking for a jacket that would be suitable for cold weather riding in California, which means temperatures in the range of 35-60°F (2-15°C). The jacket had to be versatile enough to be useful in not-so-cold conditions without causing me to overheat, but toasty enough to keep me warm when the temperatures plunge.

I considered a couple of jackets, including the well-reviewed and ever-popular Pearl Izumi Elite Barrier Jacket, but I skipped it because the water-proof shell causes me to overheat quickly, despite having a breathable back. Almost all jackets with that type of material make me feel muggy and damp inside. For that reason, I narrowed my choices to breathable, soft-shell materials, ones similar to Gore WindStopper (not GoreTex, as that one's for rain).

Of the different Gore Bike Wear jackets made with WindStopper, the Phantom 2.0 struck a good balance of form and function. It has three rear stretchy pockets to carry essentials and detachable sleeves to dump heat but keep your core warm. I thought I'd miss the front pocket for personal electronics, but so far I've done without.

The jacket has kept me warm in 40°F temperatures, with only a short-sleeved jersey as my sole "base" layer and the jacket as my outer layer. It did very well on descents, blocking wind effectively. The neck collar isn't too snug that it blocks wind completely, but it also doesn't let wind seep in too easily. About the only time I've had to unzip the front to dump heat is during sustained climbs. This will be suitable for all but the most inclement of weather.

The detachable sleeves are a nice idea, but I think they can be improved on. The zippers can't be used as ventilation to dump heat. There are two zippers on each sleeve surrounding the armpits. While it's relatively easy to detach the sleeves while wearing the jacket, it's not easy to reattach them without removing them or having someone else help you. They fold just enough to be stored in the rear pockets, but you'll definitely notice the bulge while carrying them. When detached, there are built-in "sleeves", much like a regular cycling jersey.

As for how they fit, the chest/shoulder area may seem to be tight, but it may have more to do with it having the sleeves more than anything else. They're sized like cycling jerseys -- somewhere in between pro (tight) fit and club (loose) fit. The sleeves tend to hug your arms more, unless you have really, really skinny arms. I'm 5'8, 195 lbs, 41" chest, and wear L-sized jerseys from Capo, Pearl Izumi, Voler, etc. I got the L-sized jacket and it still has room for additional inner layers. The XL version felt just a tiny bit too baggy, but not overly so.

Compared to other similar jackets from Gore (e.g. Contest, Fusion Tool, Power, etc), this one has the fit (semi-form-fitting vs pro-fit or loose fit), material (soft-shell vs active shell), and pocket (stretchy vs zipper) combination that I prefer. The Alp-X and Xenon are the next jackets to consider, although they are much pricier.
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on February 21, 2014
The service I got from Competitive Cyclist was excellent...!

This is about the jacket itself....This was to be my second jacket, as I love the first one, and wanted this color for safer riding on cloudy low-visibility days..

I ordered exactly the same size and model# as I've had and loved for nearly a year, and when I got it, I first thought that maybe my Christmas/Holiday dining experiences had caught up with me...;-)

Upon closer examination and measuring, I determined that Gore is now cutting this jacket to a much, much tighter fitting standard than previously...The body? Part me, part the jacket...But the arms were now so tight I could not wear my skin-tight arm warmers under the sleeves, and I know my arms are not any chubbier than they were...!

By comparing the seam-to-seam measurements with the new and old jackets, I was amazed to find out that the cut was between .5" and 1" narrower in all dimensions....overall length of the arms and body was exactly the same, so I'm sure I had a 'large' to compare....

I'm now forced to find another jacket.....the XL size was just longer and had longer arms...the body did fit well, but the overall length was for someone much taller than my 5'9"s.....!
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on November 27, 2012
Just wore it in 35 degree weather. Stayed perfectly warm! Go with a larger size because they do run small.
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on April 13, 2013
This is a great jacket. It has sleeves that can detach using zippers. It has pockets on the back. Its very good at blocking the wind. Great alone in ~50-60 degree weather, great as an outer layer in colder weather.

The only weird thing is that the zipper on mine is left handed, meaning to attach the zipper you actually hold it in your left hand and bring it to the right. Perfect if you are left handed. As a right hander, I got use to it pretty quick and it doesn't bother me anymore.
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on November 12, 2013
I have used this jacket on only a few rides so far but I really like it. It is very comfortable and the Windstopper fabric on the front really does the job. The back is better ventilated so I don't overheat. I wore this on a 109 mile ride where I encountered about a 30F temperature difference (early start plus going through San Francisco). In the warm sections the ability to zip off the sleeves and open the chest was great but having the sleeves and closing it up made all the difference riding through wind and fog.

The cut works great on the bike with sufficiently long arms and enough tail to keep me covered in back. The rear pockets work well and provide a place to put the sleeves while riding.

I think the "breathability" of this jacket is what really makes the difference. Most windbreaker or rain oriented jackets end up becoming a portable body steamer after a bit of riding. The ability to have a high level of evaporation through the back makes it very comfortable.

This jacket is not the type that rolls up into a small ball and disappears into a jersey pocket. While it is definitely not heavy, it is also not compact enough to easily stow in a jersey pocket. I plan to wear the jacket the whole day when I wear it, but this is made much easier for "spring conditions" by being able to remove the sleeves. The main zipper seems backward, but I have adjusted to that. The sleeves zip on and off easily, but it takes a bit of looking at the sleeve to determine if it is the right or left one.

I am very impressed with this jacket and look forward to using it for both road and trail riding.
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on March 24, 2015
I've had this jacket since Christmas - this thing is amazing. I've managed to ride 1000 miles since I received it and the windproof and breathe-ability of it allows a wide range of temperatures to be accommodated. It fits a little odd but once on the bike everything lines up. I've used it in 20 deg commutes of 12 miles with a base layer and a thin fleece under it and was VERY comfortable. For the record, I'm 5'10, weigh 175 with an athletic build, and the LARGE was perfect. Washes easy enough. Definite recommend!
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on March 24, 2015
This jacket is very warm. So much so that at 50deg, all I use is the vest portion with a long sleeve jersey and I am more than fine. I used the full jacket on a 42 deg morning ride with a long sleeve jersey and it was more than warm enough. The sleeves are attached with two zippers. The positioning of them is not accommodating to reach while riding to get some venting. I found it very difficult to remove the sleeves without completely removing the jacket. Speaking of venting, it would have been nice if there were some additional vents to open as the temp rises during the ride. If you are going to ride in 50deg+ weather, I would get something a little lighter. You will probably be too warm with this. I give it 3 stars because of the zipper positions on the sleeves, and lack of venting. I would recommend this jacket for 40deg riding.
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on March 4, 2016
Really like this jacket! It's very visible (i got yellow) which is definitely nice for riding on the roads. It also breathes pretty well. Although it does seem to primarily dump air out the back, which seems to then be slightly impeded when wearing a backpack while mountain biking. But i still haven't felt like i'm overheating or drenching myself from the inside out. Since i use it mountain biking i've also gotten it pretty dirty and muddy and it cleans up really nicely as well - no stains or anything in spite of some VERY muddy conditions. (Although the cleaning instructions on the tag do not agree with the cleaning instructions that describe the garment). As indicated in the product details it is NOT water proof by any means, it seems to shed a little bit of light mist, but prolonged exposure to moisture will eventually soak through and get you wet and cold. (Which i know from experience). Also, because i'm a little daft, i suppose, i did not really realize this does not convert to a tank top, it converts into a short-sleeved jersey. No complaints, i actually rather like it, i just didn't realize it when i bought it (although it is clearly evident from the pictures). I will say this, and this is my main gripe, there are two zippers for detaching each sleeve, and, for me, at least, they're very awkwardly placed; it's very hard for me to detach or reattach the sleeves by myself while wearing the jacket. As a matter-of-fact, i have not been able to successfully do either without a little help while wearing the jacket. (While NOT wearing the jacket it's not a problem at all).
When detached the sleeves are a little bulky to stick in the back pockets, but it still works. And putting the sleeves in my backpack works great.
I've worn this in the 40ies through the 50ies without being too uncomfortable.
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on November 22, 2014
If you are in reasonably good shape go with your size. I read the reviews here and ordered size L which was way too big for me. I am 5'8 and 160 lbs and wear M in Castelli, Giordana and PI. So I returned L and got size S which fits great and leaves enough room for a base layer and a LS jersey if the temperatures get chilly. Unless you are totally out of shape and carry way too much weight in your belly, don't bother reading the reviews and go with your size, do not size up by any means.

The jacket itself is great, blocks the wind completely and is warm enough with a base layer for anything above 50s. Below that you will probably need a good LS jersey to keep you warm on top of the base layer. Four stars only because the shoulders 'puff up'. More of of a cosmetic issue because of the removable sleeves and zippers.

I highly recommend this jacket if you want to keep cycling in cool/cold weather. It's a must.
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