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Stronger Than Steel
What’s behind our tougher-than-nails dyneRope fabric
The holes vary in size, each one revealing a patch of bloody skin and dirt.
The shorts are shredded, the body bruised and beaten by the tumble.
You race XC and ride trails long enough, there’s no escaping it. Some days we’re a little luckier, staying upright and unscathed, minus a few scratches on our arms and legs. Depending on how tight the trail is— how many fingers of branches and boulders reach out to kiss us as we pass—we may fare slightly better. Or worse.
And so it goes for the brave who ride off-road, knowing that scrapes and hard knocks come with the territory. But what if we created a textile that could fight back? A beefed-up material that behaved like our legendary Lycra blends—silky smooth and comfortably compressive—yet didn’t tear when we hit the deck? A fabric injected with extra abrasion-resistant, skin-saving firepower?
The brief was ready.
Now, it’s important to note there are loads of brands out there making fantastic armor and pads that focus on protection from impact. Our mission, however, revolved more around abrasion resistance i.e., shielding your skin. The difference is weaving—quite literally—protective elements into a cycling-specific fabric that’s as comfortable, stretchy, lightweight, etc., as the materials used to construct your go-to bib shorts. Enter dyneRope:
Without divulging too many specifics, we’ve weaved a special black polyethylene ripstop lattice into the fabric, a gridwork made from a specific fiber that’s 15 times stronger than steel. Look closely; you’ll see it on the surface. This potent combination carries a similar handfeel to our crispy Kompressor fabrics—ultrathin, shell-like, and hardy, now with a “rebar” skeleton for added durability and tear-resistance. More remarkable is its 4-way stretch makeup that flexes with your muscles, all while remaining exceptionally breathable. No one is making anything quite like it. As you read this, the BMC MTB Racing Team riders are leaning on their dyneRope-equipped XC Bib Shorts for an added boost.
Our new TRAIL Collection also benefits from this super fabric, as we created arm and knee protectors with panels of dyneRope, effectively giving you second-skin sleeves that resemble arm and leg warmers. We stash them in our packs for the ascent, then slip them on for added coverage during dicey descents.
The long-sleeve jersey and future TRAIL products also include panels of it, giving you a little extra dose of protection without tacking on weight. “The risk of falling is always around the corner. Here’s where the dyneRope comes into play: positioning it in strategic points, this fabric offers greater security and allows you to hit the trail with more confidence,” says our off-road product development team. The test? We’ve hit the dirt, snagged tree limbs, and had run-ins with Moab’s sandstone trail furniture—escaping all of it with our gear and, most importantly, skin intact.