Biehler Thermal Rain kit
2020    photos:  Stan Koolen text: Jean Pierre Bolsius


When seasons start to change my mood often changes as well. When the temperature drops and the weather gets unpredictable, I normally need a little bit of time to get used to it, decompress and get back into that cycling grinta. A nice new kit helps with getting that motivation back. When the new Biehler Thermal Rain Collection arrived I couldn’t wait to test it and get back on the bike again.

In Autumn and Winter I normally follow a structured training plan for indoor training. I usually only ride my bike outside on saturday or sunday. I start early, like 07.50 am, to do a 100-150km loop with a full gazz segment somewhere halfway. It’s not that easy to find the right kit during this time of the year; warm enough at the start, breathable enough to prevent overheating when kicking the gears and water repellent enough for when it starts to rain.

Biehler Thermal Rain Jersey

I've tested the Thermal Rain long sleeve jersey classic blue in L (I am 195 cm and 81-85kg). When the temperature is around 10-15 Celsius I wear it with a short sleeve base layer and a gilet at the beginning of the ride or during a coffee stop. When temperature drops around 5-10 Celsius a long sleeve base layer and a gilet will do the job and when it’s really cold (below 5 Celsius) I use a shell jacket to protect me against the cold wind. What to wear in which temperature is really personal, but I think you can easily use the long sleeve as a top- or midlayer.


The fit is what I prefer: racy and tight, but with enough stretch and freedom of moving thanks to the Microfabric bi-elastic thermal fabric. The 3 rear pockets are perfectly reachable, which comes handy with bulky gloves in wintertime. The extra wide silicone gripper tape at the back hem ensures a tight fit and prevents it from rising up. Only point of attention could be the collar. I normally like short/low collars as they give enough room for my neck when sitting deep. When it’s really cold you're probably already wearing a buff. When putting the buff underneath your jersey it should give you enough protection against the cold. So a higher collar for me isn't really doing the job, but I think this is more a personal thing.

Changeable weather conditions

I've used the long sleeve a couple times in the rain and it passed the test thanks to the DWR treatment. The jersey is water repellent and the DWR coating should work for approximately 30 washes. I think this is a bit on the positive side. For full protection you'll probably need to restore it sooner than recommended. Often these factory-applied treatments are fluoropolymer based. These applications are quite thin and not always as effective. Restoring the repellency function can be done by using recommended DWR products. The jersey isn’t designed to be fully water resistant so I recommend a separate rain jacket when you expect a lot of rain. As said the Stelvio thermal fabric is warm and breathable enough to do your tempo rides in changeable conditions. The reflective Biehler logo’s helps keeping you visible when riding in the dark or when it’s really cloudy. The Biehler website states that the jersey is made of a fully dyed fabric. We've (me and Stan) tested two jerseys: the Blue jersey as seen in the photos and the Raw Sienna colorway. The Blue jersey is indeed made of a fully dyed fabric, but on the other hand the Raw Sienna jerseys is not. The color is printed on the fabric. Sadly I have to say that the quality of the print isn't any good. If you look closely the color is not a solid color but you can actually see the printed pixels. Also for a winter rain jersey this color is much harder to clean, especially after a wet ride the stains are much harder to remove and even harder when the DWR treatment has stopped working. So keep this in might when you're looking for a light colored winter jersey.

Thermal Rain Bibshorts

The bib short has a nice soft warming inner fleece and I like the slightly longer leg length. Like the Thermal long sleeves this bib short also have the warm and water-repellent Stelvio fabric and comes with the reflective tags and logos for additional safety. You only need water repellent leg warmers to keep you full protected against the elements.

The multi-density-pad is what I think one of the best pads in the market, but this is highly personal of course. The bib is a good, basic piece of clothing which you can almost use all year around, except for the really hot days here in the Netherlands. In comparison to the Essential bib shorts there's less compression (I have both in L), so my favorite bib short will still be the Essential. I really like the various colours of the Thermal Rain Collection. Especially the dark brown bibs is a really nice addition to the collection, a great alternative to the usual standard black shorts. The Thermal Rain bibs keep you protected from the rain and insulated against the cold but are breathable enough to cope when the temperature rises. I found the bib comfortable, supportive and pliable, and plenty warm enough. At €195,- they sit at top of the spectrum when it comes to winter bib shorts. They're not cheap, but they demonstrate pretty good value for money to me.


Biehler managed to release a nice Autumn- and Winter collection this year with several pieces from jackets to long sleeve jerseys, gilets and bib short/tights. There's no excuses to not get on your bike and work on those Covid-19 kilo’s! €350,- for a winter kit is a lot of money but I absolutely love the color, style and fit, the materials are high quality and comfortable, and it has great pockets. Time will tell how well the DWR treament holds up.

The Thermal Rain jersey is availble in sizes XS-XXXXL and retail for €155,20 incl. VAT and shipping. The Thermal Rain bib is available in sizes XS-XXXXL and retail for €194,96 incl. VAT and shipping