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Aerostich WINDSTOPPER Electric Vest
- Product Review (submitted on March 14, 2014):
I ride year round, 30,000 miles a year, on a V-Strom with OEM windshield; and I live in Ohio, so temps range from mid 20s F - 100 F.
I've owned 2 non windstopper (standard model) Aerostich vests, and 1 non windstopper Aerostich AirVantage vest over the past decade. My wife still owns and regularly uses a non windstopper Aerostich vest that is 5+ years old.
I recently got rid of the somewhat ill fitting AirVantage (I had bought it used so I took the size it was offered in which was a tad big) and replaced it with a correctly sized new Aerostich windstopper vest. The windstopper is my favorite of all the ones I've used, as it is warmer than the non-windstopper versions, thinner, and lighter. It packs much smaller, too. USA made and the quality is top notch - I have no doubt this will last, just as the others did, for years. I replaced the others only due to size fluctuations over the years, not due to any defect in the product.
I would strongly suggest spending the extra $10 and getting the windstopper version.
I personally prefer no arms on the vest (that's what makes it a vest, duh!) because it keeps the vest much smaller to pack; and the optional arms aren't heated anyway.
Also, a note on sizing because I didn't see anything already posted specific to that: follow the sizing chart, it is accurate. I found myself right on the line between L and XL. Under normal circumstances, I'd be inclined to go to the next largest size (XL) but in this instance I opted to go to the smaller size (L) and it was a good call. The vest is perfectly snug, which is what you want for optimum heat transfer. I am 6-00, 220, 39-40" waist, 44-46" chest.
Lastly, a note on a thermostat vs. the standard switch - obviously opinions vary, but I found that I like my vest either "on" or "off". My AirVantage had a thermostat control with it, and I disliked it immensely. It added weight, complicated things (where to hang it?), and I felt the heat output was diminished at maximum setting from what it was with the standard switch that comes with the vest. I personally would not opt for the thermostat.
I think the basic windstopper vest by itself is a gamechanger and a top notch product, no accessories needed.