TUCANO URBANO PANTA NANO OVERTROUSERS
208g (228g including bag) XL Black (as tested) £44.99
Light-weight, packable, urban, commute, leisure, spring to mind when taking a first look at Tucano Urbano’s Panta Nano Overtrousers. Designed to the same standard at the Nano Zeta Jacket, they have a lot to offer on their own or as part of a layering system. This is, fundamentally, a shell garment, with some very nice touches. Equally, they are very much commute-leisurely-ride territory.
Pros: light-weight, very packable.
Cons: breathability toward the lower end of the scale, ankle adjustment a tad fiddly.
Ratings of PU5000mm for waterproofing and 5000g/m2/24hr for breathability are nothing to write home about. These are suitable for purpose, but if you tend to the sports-commuter live in very hilly or wet areas, you may want to look for a more technical bit of gear. Personally, I find breathability less of an issue with over-trousers than with jackets. However, a relatively low rating may not concern some – folk with E-Bikes, perhaps.
Seams are taped, which I’d expect at this price point.
The polyamide fabric is not especially tactile, but these will generally be worn over long trousers. When working outside, I’d tend to look toward something more flexible, even if not totally waterproof, for example, Showers Pass Skyline Trousers (much pricier, but a real favourite, tougher, too). No, the Panta Nano are for the commute to the workplace and, even better, home; gentle leisure rides with the family, too.
If the weather turns wet on the commute, the eminently packable Panta Nano, slips nicely into a packable sack and can be hung on a rucksack loop or other convenient spot to keep it out of the main luggage. There are Velcro tabs for compression and added security.
The waist is elasticated.
Getting them on and off is aided by a bellows below the knee. I’ve had no trouble getting them over size 9.5 (UK) brogues and Shimano SPD shoes. An acquaintance found things harder, but then his size thirteens take a lot of manoeuvring, full-stop. The bellow is held in place by big Velcro flaps.
Pull the front ankle hem pocket, and out comes a shoe upper cover. This is elasticated to the fore, with a reflective tab providing security at the heel: an elastic strap loops under the foot. It fits in with the convenient, packable, commuting theme.
In some ways, I’d have hoped for more reflective strips and patches on commuting trousers. However, reflectivity is rarely a deal breaker for me.
Whilst you could wear these when off the bike, it is worth noting that unlike some cycling over-trousers, there’s no reinforced seat. Not as problem on the commute. Most likely, but a limit to adaptability or use for other disciplines.
XL gave a comfortable fit: firm, but not tight, around the waist, and sufficient spare gusset for stretching over the top tube and pedalling. Whereas, I could have gone for a smaller size jacket – probably for the sake of vanity – I’d be lead by the size guide for the over-trousers.
Machine wash at 30C. Drying times are just about the same as the same brand’s Nano Rain Zeta Jacket. Two to three hours on the line on a cloudy day after an 800rpm spin; heading to overnight for indoor drip dry. I would tend to wash in something gentle or breathable gear specific. Note, Tucano Urbano do not insist that either are necessary precautions. I’m just cautious.
Drying Times 3/5
Drying times are just about the same as the same brand’s Nano Rain Zeta Jacket. Two to three hours on the line on a cloudy day after a 800rpm spin; heading to overnight for indoor drip dry. I tend to err away from hanging garments like this on a radiator.
Out and about, after a good dousing in the rain, it dries in around an hour at room temperature. Light drizzle disappears very quickly during a ride. As for drying out when packed, I’ve not commuted for long enough, but I’d remember to air it at the earliest opportunity.
When the rain came, whether sitting on the fountain steps or wobbling on one leg, they’ve gone on with ease with bellows pulled right out. If using the shoe-cover, remember to slip the elastic instep strap.
Removing over-trousers never comes so simply to me whatever the over-trousers (except for hefty-weight over-trousers that have full length zips). Having said that, whilst not overly problematic, it took me a while to get used to the positions of the Velcro fastenings. Likewise, I educated myself to ensuring the bellows were tucked in. not that I’ve had any distressing contact with the chain – but there’d only be one winner if there were.
The rain has been kept out. The shoe-cover pulls over the toe, and offers some additional protection to shoe uppers. That’s handy on an office commute where splattered smarts risk causing offence. I wondered, initially, if they’d stay in place. They have. Take care in the puddles; there's no protection for the sole.
In the same context, breathability is at the lower end of the scale. However, things have not become unpleasantly clammy at ten to twelve miles per hour over a forty-minute commute. I’d not want to be wearing them all day on a long tour. Sportier commuters will want a more technical garment – or are more likely to change from civvies into cycling specific gear. I’d wear these over moleskin trousers in winter, but I’d keep the speed down and twiddle the long hill on my current commute.
I’ve worn them on leisure rides, too. For leisure riding I rarely bother with over-trousers. Attempting to attack the hills quickly made things clammy. However, for a family ride – eight to twelve mph, in my case – these were adequate. After all, the family rarely rides for more than a couple of hours and will duck into the first café or pub when black clouds gather.
Keeping things at that 11mph mark and I have not slipped on any saddle – leather or synthetic.
It is worth noting that packability is much better than with weightier often higher-spec, waterproofs.
Firstly, I’ve seen significant discounts on the Nano Panta on-line.
Without going back to ancient crisp-packet waterproofs, you can find decent enough shop-brand over-trousers for a good deal less than £44.99. Mind you, they may well not have much in the way of breathability and watch out for the difference between water-resistant and water-proof. Having said that, some offer only a little less performance than the Panta Nano.
Endura’s Hummvee II are not technically water-proof, although they offer much more flexibility to those who just want one pair of over-trousers. A tad pricier than the Panta Nano.
Altura’s Nightvision 3 trousers offer double the breathability rating and greater reflective properties. Pricier, and minus the shoe-cover, but a good bet for the faster commuter.
At a similar price point are the Nightrider Waterproof over-trousers, from ProViz. Heftier weight, I’ve used these quite happily for winter commuting and touring, too.
Fundamentally, these are urban, commuting, or gentle leisure over-trousers. In that sense they fit their brief for short rides and short exposure to bad weather well. Packing down small, they are great for tucking in your pannier or rucksack before heading to town. Those prone to taking the long-way home or post work frolics on the trail, may want something more technical.
Verdict 3.5/5 Meet the design brief well, but if you only want one set of wet weather gear and you do more than commute, there may be better options.
PUBLISHED JULY 2020