Why is it that so much of the wet weather gear on the market is black? OK, they may have a slither of reflective material or a patch of flouro fitted, but in my mind, to be seen, the suit really needs to cry out “Hello, I’m here, please don’t crash into me!”
The BMW ProRain 3 suits certainly tick the visability box. They only come in one colour – Bright yellow. Yes, they are expensive (just over £100 on ebay) but offer a good option for an all in one suit. They are made from a weird, rubbery, slightly stretchy, slightly grippy material which makes getting the suit on a bit tricky. Once on though, the suit does do a very good job of keeping you dry. To be fair, if you put the suit on at home in the dry and then put your boots on, they’re not too bad to get on, but when standing at the road side, already slightly damp from being caught in a shower, they are a bit of a struggle. BMW have done a good job to make getting in and out of the suits as easy as possible, but it’s all relative isn’t it? The zip is long and runs right down to the crotch with an extra flap in there to keep your ‘important bits’ dry. The lower legs unzip to make flared trousers that any aging hippy would be proud of, but still, roadside, we found clambering in to them to be a bit of a 2 man job.
So, once on, do they actually work? Yes they do. They survived some massive torrential rain storms, especially in SE Asia and didn’t let a drop in. Even the external breast pocket (it’s the only one) kept things super dry. It’s a shame they didn’t fit any leg pockets though, as retrieving any forgotten items from your jeans is like a session at a yoga class. The seams are welded and there is a reinforced section in the ‘seat’ of the trouser part.
We also opted to wear them quite a bit in dry, cold conditions, just to keep the wind off. In warm and rainy conditions they did seem to suffer a bit from condensation build up and our ‘nether regions’ felt a little damp. We’re not 100% sure if that was from sweat, condensation or some seepage from pooled water, but I am talking pretty huge, tropical rain along with temperatures of 25 degrees plus.
My wife Kate, being a proud holder of a ‘Black belt in Origami’, could stash her size ‘small’ suit back into the mesh stuff sack it came with. Being an impatient male, I couldn’t be bothered with the faff and just rolled it into a bag, safe and sound, where it waited for a rainy day. A last note on sizing; for my 6ft frame a ‘large’ fitted very nicely, but for Kate, standing a slender 5’ 6” even the small (no XS available) gave her a look that any Teletubby would be proud of.