The Black Bibs: feedback?

Haha I can agree with that. I think that part of the issue is that I sometimes find that the chamois is placed a little bit too far back. So that the majority of the padding is just behind where my butt touches the saddle and the from of the chamois ends just a little too low to cover what’s underneath.


To be fair I hear way more complaints about the black bibs than rapha core. More expensive doesn’t always mean better, but I believe the saying “you get what you pay for” is true at least to some extent.

I talked to a local guy who didn’t want to buy expensive bibs cause he said “if I do that and have to get 3 new pairs every year it’s expensive” turns out he was buying junk bibs and using them for a year and tossing them away. I convinced him he’s better off spending the money on a better product that will not be disposable AND provide better comfort.

That said I own a pair of Bontrager Velocis bibs which were $160 or so new and are the biggest POS in my closet as far as comfort AND wear. The Lycra is so stretched on the butt that I am too embarrassed to even wear them out anymore and they have been relegated to the trainer. But hey the material FEELS nice


Over the course of a year, $65 is 18 cents a day. For 3 pairs, that’s less than 60 cents. And that is just for one year. A nice pair of bibs lasts at least 2 years. Often more. There’s nothing wrong with prioritizing other things in life, and I understand that there are people what can’t afford that. I’m just saying that if you can afford 30 cents a day to be more comfortable on the bike for 2 years, I think that is a wise investment.


This misses something though. If you’re below a certain amount of money coming in each month, it’s extremely hard to get the initial money. It’s the same with cheap shoes or boots. Nice boots last many years and are easily a better value, but if you need shoes to wear to work today and only have $30 to get you through until payday, you can’t spend $300 on boots. Even more so with an item for a hobby, such as bibs.

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Exactly. And many Chinese shorts have pretty similar raised pads.

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So then my suggestion would be buy what you can now and save for better stuff later. Instead of 3 pairs of cheap bibs, buy 1 pair now and instead of 2 more cheapies later, save for a nicer pair.

This is why I try to recycle as much of my stuff as I can. Just got new MTB shoes and giving away my old pair. Yes they’re worn and bruised but they will help someone not buy a cheap pair now and save money for something else.

That said you don’t need nice stuff to enjoy cycling but it does make it more enjoyable


I’ve decided to try some aliexpress shorts, specifically these ones.


My understanding, is that the BlackBibs is just some china ones with good marketing.

I’ve had lots of bibs over the years, pearl Izumi, giodana, mavic, NZO, etc. Some of the really cheap ones did feel like wearing a diaper. Some had too short bibs and squished everything. So I’m thinking there is quality, which is universal for everyone … do they fall apart quickly? then there’s the fit, which is personal. These are just for the trainer (unless they’re really good, in which case I’ll order a few more pair for outside use).

The chamois looks pretty close to the BlackBibs. I thought on CyclingTips/NerdAlert, James said that most shorts from the main brands, use chamois from the same manufacturer.

^^^that looks like Pactimo’s marketing stuff in a way with that little hour dial:

That said I’m not so sure that the statement of “this company makes chamois for a lot of companies”, is any different from people who say that “Giant makes bikes for all the major manufacturers”

Curious how you get on with them, I really wouldn’t mind some cheap bibs for trainer rides at home.

The maker for most of the nice chamois is elastic interface. Someone can probably clear this up, but it seems the CyTech and Elastic Interface are two names for the same company. My favorite bibs, Ornot, are cytech and it’s a step above the other ones I have which are not.

Just passing along some info from that same Cycling Tips interview.

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Yes, that sounds right. I wish James on Cyclingtips would sort of do a reverse engineering analysis on 20 or 30 pairs of bib shorts and the CyTech catalog. “so these five shorts use a CyTech model X chamois, just with different colors. These 4 use the model Y foam but with a different cover …”. I greatly dislike how marketing skews the story we’re told about how say Rapha have this chamois, yet it might be the same as the Pearl Izumi Pro, just dyed a different color and with perforations or something.

I believe, that there are companies selling $100 bib shorts that are no better than some $30 china ones. Then there are some $50 china ones that are garbage. Sifting through the mess to find what is essentially a $100 bib for $30, that works with you, and then buying five pair (for trainer use for sure, but maybe for outside use if they’re decent), could be really good. No more (for me anyway) running bibs for a couple years after I should let them go, just because they cost $150+ when I bought them.

I’ll be sure to report in on these once they arrive. I will try to contrast against others I’ve tried. I would say I’m not as light/skinny as some on here, so these may well be great for someone with a CAT1 physique or they may suit more of a recreational physique. I know when I got Mavic ones once, to get the waist/arse to fit me, I’d have needed the quads of an olympic track sprinter to fill the elastic.


I wish there was more transparency as well. I contacted my favorite bib company to ask about their Cytech chamois and all they would volunteer is that it is “custom.”

I’m addition, I’m amazed at how many companies sell bibshorts without showing a picture of the chamois. Mind boggling.

Completely coincidentally, I just got this in an email from Orro.

So there’s no way Cyctech make the Endurance 2.5 HD just for Orro. Presumably there are x companies that also own up to using the endurance 2.5 hd, and then y companies who just claim ‘custom’ chamois or ‘custom cyctech’ chamois (and custom could be color, or it could be that the top fabric is cheaper than the regular endurance 2.5 hd.

This also annoyed me with bicycles when brands would claim to have “designed” a bike, but it’s actually an open mold frame, and all they did was spec the carbon grade and paint. If you choose a Cyctech chamois from their catalog (or sit down with their sales rep and tweak an existing chamois, that is not “designing” a chamois.

Now I do totally concede that maybe at the sub $100 level (USA domestic pricing), there may be no Cyctech chamois, and they could all be Chinese knock off chamois (I don’t know either way). But, for <90 min trainer rides and <2hr road rides, I do not know if that matters.

How have my shorts died in the past (multiple pairs have failed by some of the modes below)?

  1. Chamois breaks down and loses all padding ability
  2. Hole in the shorts lycra … not from wear, but maybe caught on something
  3. Lycra wore so thin that I was displaying everything to everyone
  4. Chamois stitching to lycra failed.

So apart from 1) above, I don’t have chamois lifespan issues, just chamois comfort (not saddle sore discomfort, but just some felt like I was wearing a diaper). So in conclusion, provided these (or another one I try next if these aren’t good) $30 ones are comfortable for me, and the lycra doesnt wear to see through or the stitching doesnt pull apart, then they’ll be fine for my trainer rides and maybe some weekend 90min to 3 hr rides. I’ll still have my Pearl Izumi Elite Sunday best shorts (out of the current half dozen pair I have, these Pearl Izumi pairs are my newest and most expensive. So I don’t use them on the trainer).

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Any update on the black bibs, used them for
1.5h sweet spot and they are good the material is nice and feels good Quality pads seems good. Delivery is still awful but I might actual order another pair - can’t believe I said that

I think it gets to a point where it doesn’t make sense to gamble on $30 bibs because if you hate them (which isn’t exactly far fetched for the quality expected), you are then buying another pair for $30 or more, when there are potentially better options for $60. Buy once cry once, even if the $60 and $30 use the same chamois but there could be other improvements like how it’s positioned or material or stitching quality etc.

Black Bibs would likely be about as “cheap” as I would go with reasonable expectations.

@Cleanneon98 - Totally. The question is though, are all $30 shorts actually $30 shorts, and are all $60 shorts really $60 shorts, or are some $30 shorts with an extra large margin?

Worst case, they’re trainer shorts for the 45 min workouts.


I bought a pair of BB Ultimate, and liked them enough to order two more. No complaints. For long rides I do prefer the Pearl Izumi Pro bibs, but save them for that purpose as they are 300% of the cost of Black Bibs.

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I’m sure it’s a bit of both which is why I just decided to get Pactimo for my outdoor rides since they were higher end and with consistently favorable reviews. Considerably more expensive but the best chamois I’ve ever used and great materials.

For a 1 hour trainer ride I’ll use whatever (BB or any off brand) but today doing a century had no discomfort. I liked my first pair so much I bought another and unless I crash them I’m expecting 5+ years of use from them

I’ve never gotten more than 3 seasons out of ANY pair of bibs I’ve owned lol. I wish I got 5 years.

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I have a pair of Pearl Izumi that I still use for MTB that I got I think in late 2016 or early 2017 I can’t remember. Some of the stitching for the chamois is undone but it stays in place and they still fit tight. The chamois is fine for short MTB rides but definitely broke down. These feel way nicer from the start compared to how those were, chamois is substantial