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Old 07-17-2012, 08:23 PM   #1
OaklandStrom OP
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Olympia Phantom - long term review?

I've searched and searched, and I haven't found much about the Olympia Phantom suit written in the last 5 years.

Do you have one? How long? What do you think about it?

Thanks!
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Old 07-17-2012, 10:13 PM   #2
Walterxr650l
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I have had mine for about 4 years now. The seam on the back side of the thigh on both legs has ripped out. The seams in the crotch of the liner are ripping out. One of the pocket zippers has broken. The pull tab on the main front zipper broke off. I replaced it with a key ring.

All the Velcro is annoying. When the suit was newer, I often would have my arm get stuck to my leg while zipping the leg zipper. If they had reversed the position of the hooks and loops on the leg, this would not have been a problem.

I would not buy the suit again. That is my opinion.
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Old 07-18-2012, 06:07 AM   #3
MillCreek
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I have had mine for 4.5 years now. Mine has held up very well with no broken seams, zippers or anything else wrong with it. The high viz is problematic to keep relatively clean and there are some permanent stains on it that don't come out regardless of how I clean it. But the safety issue in the gloom of the PNW makes it worth it.

I wash my textile gear once a year in Tech Wash and Nikwax wash-in waterproofing. It still keeps me dry in the rainy Seattle weather. If something happened to it tomorrow, I would buy it again. I chose it over the Stitch based on all the leakage problems with the Stitch.
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Old 07-18-2012, 06:41 AM   #4
sillymike
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After it's 3rd season, mine went into some-retirement (only used for late-fall/early spring 'cold' rides).

The +
All the seams/zippers held up OK
Even if dirty, it will still get you noticed
Loved all those pockets
The Velcro is has strong as before

The -
Most of the reflective piping frayed off.
After the 1st season, seams would let water in...
Waterproof zippers... are not really waterproof.

So I went back to a jacket/pant setup, with removable waterproof liners.
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Old 07-18-2012, 06:54 AM   #5
Grainbelt
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Four years, 50k miles, re-waterproofed with Revive-X last fall. I don't wear it much in July and August, but then I don't ride much when it is this hot anyway.

Still keeps me dry in all but the most torrential rain (crotch pooling eventually occurs). I haven't had a seam fail, but I've never used the liner.

I agree the velcro is a bit of a PITA but it has become less so now that it is broken in.

For the price, I'm pretty happy with it. Wish it had a pass thru for heated gear, I just cut a hole in one of the pockets.
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Old 07-18-2012, 10:58 AM   #6
OaklandStrom OP
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Thanks for the replies.

I'm still debating the "one piece vs jacket & pants" options. I currently have a jacket & overpants, but I'm not convinced the overpants would do much good in a crash.
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Old 07-18-2012, 12:37 PM   #7
RossM
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I've had mine for over a year but only use it in the winter. No visible wear but water resistant is the term I would use. The Velcro would keep me from buying it again, it is truly a PITA. I use the Stealth (no Velcro) most of the year and really like it.
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Old 07-18-2012, 02:30 PM   #8
MillCreek
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^^^ I leave the legs zipped and Velcroed all the time. I have found that taking my shoes on and off to put the suit on or off is quicker than doing the leg zippers and Velcro. So the only Velcro I do is over the main zipper.

Plus one on the Stealth in hot weather. I use that suit as well.
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Old 07-18-2012, 09:50 PM   #9
Renegade_Azzy
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had mine for a year now.

Off the top of my head:
Nice protection.
Fits best with liner
Not for 80+ degree days
arm vents pretty useless
back pocket useless, unless you are into asphyxiation
liner is toasty
no provision for easily carrying a firearm
either tall and wide, or short and thin. Sizing is to be desired
Make sure you zip it right if expecting rain.
easy on, easy off.
reflective panels nice
started to fray after about 8 months of riding
shoulder armor never seems to stay in right spot
elbow armor seems to be in a place where it will just slide away and leave you exposed, unless you crank down on the strap past the velcro or have mammoth arms.
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Old 07-19-2012, 03:08 PM   #10
a2ronm
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Location: Somewhere North of Charleston, SC
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This is my 3rd piece of Olympia gear (Patton, Bushwhacker, now Phantom). I got the Phantom to replace a (actually 3) BMW Coverall. I got it in Feb 2011. I wore it daily as a commute suit until May-August when it is just too hot here in South Carolina for this garment, started wearing it again in September, quit wearing it this past May 2012.

The good:

High Vis is very visible.
Warm, even without the insulated liner that I've never used despite riding in 20 degF weather during freak snow in Alabama last December.
Mostly functional pockets (chest pockets had smallish openings and the left chest Napoleon pocket I mostly never used).
Flexible, not uncomfortable.
Value priced.
No busted seams, minimal fraying, holding up physically well.

The not so good:

Leaks, unreliable for anything other than short light rain, I had to carry an external rain suit. The I-can-live-with-it left-hand sleeve leak was followed by a complete suit soaking during a road trip that left me blanket wrapped in a laundry mat as I dried out the suit and fleece liners I was wearing.

The high vis gets dirty, still works but looks grungy. Since my other High Vis gear does the same probably typical.

Garners comments like "...are you a skydiver?" even as I stood next to my motorcycle.

The velcro drives me crazy, the long runs on the chest and legs seal well but getting good "bubble" free runs takes a couple tries.

When you stop for a break or get where you are going and take it off............if it's cold out, you still need another jacket.

The CE armor is the hard low end type, I replaced all but the back armor with the better armor from one of the BMW suits.

Too hot for summer, even with all the vents open. If you had to wear a rainsuit over it, heat stroke is a possibility.

I realized that I was destined for a Roadcrafter 1 piece if I wanted to forgo the rainsuit or zip-in waterproof liners. I actually was planning on making a stop at Duluth during my cross country trip last month and get measured and fit, but ultimately I decided to go 2 piece for the flexibility they give.

I've got about 6,000 miles on a KLIM Badlands set now. No rainsuit required, minimal velcro.

I realize that I paid less for the Phantom than I did for just the Badlands pants and I don't expect the Phantom to have the same performance as the Badlands....

I feel I gave the Phantom a fair shot (11 months, some 10,000 miles) the "waterproof" issue is what really turned me away from it.

My personal opinion, your experience may vary...............
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Old 07-19-2012, 04:57 PM   #11
high dangler
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ive had one for 3-4 years now i guess.
In my book its a cold weather suit..Ive tried to wear it in warmer temps like 70s and its just to damn bulky/hot
I bought it big and layer as need be Very warm and i dont use the liner. Its been completly waterproof and nothing has malfunctioned.
I give the suit a big thumbs up!
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Old 07-20-2012, 07:08 AM   #12
outsidein
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Renegade_Azzy View Post
had mine for a year now.

Off the top of my head:
Nice protection.
Fits best with liner
Not for 80+ degree days
arm vents pretty useless
back pocket useless, unless you are into asphyxiation
liner is toasty
no provision for easily carrying a firearm
either tall and wide, or short and thin. Sizing is to be desired
Make sure you zip it right if expecting rain.
easy on, easy off.
reflective panels nice
started to fray after about 8 months of riding
shoulder armor never seems to stay in right spot
elbow armor seems to be in a place where it will just slide away and leave you exposed, unless you crank down on the strap past the velcro or have mammoth arms.
I have the AST jacket which is basically the top half of the Phantom suite.

1) No issues with shoulder or elbow armor not fitting, I'm 6' & 180 and take a medium. I think the previous poster's issue with armor may be due to an in correct fit.
2) Chest vents and particularly arm vents are very effective and flow a lot of air unless you are behind a large shield - they need to be in the wind though. This jacket will keep you cool but you must be in forward motion to force air through the vents, otherwise it will be an oven.
3) No fraying issues after 3 years heavy use but main zipper pull did pull off, replaced with a key ring.

.
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Old 11-13-2012, 08:05 PM   #13
firedad415
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Had the Olympia Phantom for a few years now. Worn it a few times while cold out, but always preferred a two piece set up. Lost some weight and the Phantom fits a lot better through the shoulders and gut. Still a little tight in the shoulders (vertically) when bent over some (off the bike). No real binding while riding. I am 6 foot, 230lb (down from 270) and the suit is a 2XL. I like the fit and finish of the suit. I haven't seen any wear to speak of since I have only worn it for about 5 rides since buying it from Mike at Tellico Motorcycle Outfitters (best place for Olympia). Got it for about $240 shipped. Picked it up while at his shop, on a ride, in June of 09. It was an 08 leftover I think. Great guy, nice place, awesome prices!
Today was the first long ride in truly inclimate weather. 6 hours. 45 degrees. Steady (no downpours) rain all day. Mixed Roads/speeds. About 140 miles into the ride, I realized (at a gas/potty break) that I had sprung a leak. It wasn't horrible, and was confined to the belly area. It got me wet in about a 14 inch spot. Nothing anywhere else. It was at this point I called the suit a failure at being "waterproof" and donned my Frog Toggs (also poor waterproof wares) and the two seemed to stave off the rain for the remainder of the journey. Even with the leak, I was still plenty warm with just the liner, a long sleeve shirt and shorts under the suit. Warmer still with the Toggs over the suit.
I have never "treated" the suit and feel like that I shouldn't have had to at this point, but, apparently I was wrong. I guess I will never have a reasonably priced "rain proof" suit that lives up to my old Hein Gerrick, Ballistic two piece. I road from Jacksonville FL to Norfolk VA in Jan 2002, in 35* and constant rain/sleet for 11 hours straight, and not a drop of water penetrated that gear! That was the best winter gear I had ever owned.
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