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Old 13 May 2007
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Joe Rocket Alter Ego 2 on overland trip?

I bought a Joe Rocket Alter Ego 2.0 for use in summer in Oz and it's been excellent jacket. The outer shell zips off and there is a large mesh area for ventilation but the armour is still attached, it does have a waterproof (?) inner liner but the only time that I used it during a down pour I ended up wet around my lower waist as it is a shortish jacket. The only other design issue I see is that some of the zips used to attach the outer shell have a very fine pitch and may not be very rugged in the long term.

Joe Rocket Product

The main question.

I was thinking of taking it on over land trip (Alaska -Argentina) the theory being while it's a lighter jacket most of my trip will be over the summer period and I plan to take a Widder vest (warming the body core), a light weight fleece jacket and lightweight thermals (insulation down the arms and legs) and a outer waterproof jacket/pants. The idea being the colder it gets the more layers go on.

Has anyone else tried this combo? Any suggestions or comments?

P.S I've only had the widder for a short time and while I haven't been able to test it in very cold weather I'm sold on it as a concept.
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Old 13 May 2007
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Alter Ego Zipper problems

Rain pants are cheap and work well if treated with Scotch Guard spray. To me, this method allows for the most versatility and comfort and Protection.

Good luck,


Last edited by mollydog; 26 Mar 2009 at 19:47.
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Old 13 Jun 2008
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Post trip report

We've finished our trip now and after wearing the Alter Ego jacket for nearly 8 months on the road I would give it a 6-7/10 rating for this sort of usage.

For the hotter parts of the trip removing the outer shell and having a mesh jacket with the built in armour was great. But as Mollydog said the fine pitch zips were very stiff, I had the outer shell on for several months and when I removed it for the first time in Mexico I decided not to try and put it back on until I could wash the jacket (When I did that after we got back the amount of "mud" left in the bottom of the bath was incredible) and this was on a trip that was mainly all tarmac riding, no serious dirt or off road dust at all. Even after washing there I need to use more force than I care too to get the shell zipped up again.

For the colder parts of the trip it was fine and using a layered approach worked for us (thermals, heated vest, jacket, waterproof shell) wearing more layers as it got colder (or wetter).

I didn't like the inner waterproof liner supplied as the jacket willl absorb a lot of water first and it takes ages to drain away and even longer to dry. We bought separate outer rain jackets from Dri-rider that worked very well. Wearing the rain shell over the jacket made the heated vest work much more efficiently.

We got rid of our light weight fleece jackets and bought a compressor jacket from mountain hardware. This was our best buy as it was windproof, light and very warm. The best part is that it packs down into its own pocket taking up very little room when not being used. It packed down to less than half the volume the fleece did. I think that mountain hardware now only sell a version with a hood which would not be as useful for this sort of trip. (hoods flapping around while riding will annoy any pillion). Maybe other outdoors clothing people sell something similar.

And the Widder heated vest was brilliant, the only reason that we could get away with using a lighter weight jacket was due to the vest. I found that out in Alaska when I blew a fuse that powered the vests. After 15 minutes of steadily getting colder I'd had enough and fixed it on the spot instead of waiting till the end of the day.

Hope that helps any future buying decisions

Ian J
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Old 14 Jun 2008
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I wonder if they are still using those crap zippers on the removable panels?

Last edited by mollydog; 26 Mar 2009 at 19:47.
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Old 24 Jun 2008
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I use my altar ego all the time, but my kathmandu windproof jacket goes with it as a layer underneath

For a really extended trip , I think I'd prefer a 3/4 jacket more like the length of my old belstaff - my layers kept sticking out the bottom of the altar ego.
They didn't get very wet as my tank bag took teh bruynt, and if you used a big rain coat over teh jacket, you wouldn't have an issue, but i'd prefer that layer to be covered i think

3/4 will prevent less chance of something coming untcked and goving an updraught - no fun. kidney belt would help if yo could be bothered.

BUT i highly reccomend the Altar ego for tripping around Australia, but alaska i would like something more for cold
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