iXS Sports Division Carve Evo Knee  2016 Mountain Bike Review

iXS Sports Division Carve Evo Knee 2016

Reviews / Body Armour

iXS Sports Division 91,945

At A Glance

The IXS Carve knee pad returns in an updated form for 2016 as the Carve Evo. The knee guards retain their lightweight structure without hard shell, meaning a very flexible and comfy fit for a gravity oriented pad. Changes from the 2015 model include additional padding above the main knee pad, plus sewn-in Velcro straps that double up on themselves so they won't shred the pad fabric – an issue some riders had with the older model.

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On The Trail

In practice durability seems to be great, after a dozen winter rides, several knocks and one slightly accidental machine wash (they’re officially handwash only) they’re looking good as new.
Despite being light, the X-Matter slow rebound foam provides an excellent level of protection, with good coverage that extends well down below the kneecap into the upper shin. Regular foam on either side gives additional protection, and a mesh back reduces overheating. Over numerous days out in all weathers I found the fit excellent, helped by two widely adjustable Velcro straps and a silicone strip inside the upper rim, plus the general 'bendiness' and low profile of the shell-free construction. This adds up to great all-day riding pads, and compensates for the fact you have to remove your shoes to get them off. They offer a huge range of 8 sizes, my pair came up a little small against the iXS measurement chart so if you can't try them on before you buy it's worth considering one size up or expect a snug fit.

Overall

It’s great to see a manufacturer responding to customer feedback with their improved version of the existing Carve. As a comfy, light, all-day pad that doesn’t skimp on protection, the Carve Evo’s deserve to be a popular choice for alpine, uplift and gravity-oriented riders and racers in 2016.

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By Ewen Turner
Ewen Turner is a self-confessed bike geek from Kendal in the Lake District of England. He runs a coaching and guiding business up there and has a plethora of knowledge about bikes with an analytical approach to testing. His passion for bicycles is infectious, and he’s a ripper on the trails who prefers to fit his working life around his time on the bike.

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