Review: Tate Labs Rain Fly Rear Mudguard
Many readers will have seen and/or used an Ass Saver mudguard. The neat laser-cut plastic flap slots underneath your saddle, and provides valuable protection for your butt; while adding only minimal weight and aerodynamic drag. It is a KISS (Keep It Simple Stupid) approach to reducing the "mud-slick" effect.
The Ass Saver works well; but it isn't without its faults. The most significant downfall for the Swedish designed product, is that it rather too easily goes askew; exposing your back to your rear wheel. The second, is that it doesn't really provide protection for the back of your legs, or for a saddlebag or rear light housed on your seatpost. The new Tate Labs Rain Fly promises to follow in the lightweight minimalist footsteps of the Ass Saver, but to overcome these two short-comings.
The guard attaches to your seat stays using simple zip-ties, which means it will fit onto almost any frame, whether road, cyclocross or MTB. It sits solidly in place, and has proven resistant to moving; even with knocks, off-road riding and bike washing.
As mudguards go, the Tate Labs Rain Fly looks good, too. It looks aero, minimalist and sleek. 'Fenders' aren't meant to enhance the aesthetics of your bike, they are designed to improve comfort; but this one doesn't take away too much from your bike's street cred.
Crucially though, does it work? I am pleased to say it does, rather well. Much like an Ass Saver, it significantly reduces the amount of mud and spray plastered onto your vulnerable back. In addition though, it also protects the back of your legs from spray; keeping them warmer and more comfortable. It also does a great job of keeping your seat-collar, saddlebag and rear light muck-free; all of which are worth protecting.
It is a similar KISS approach to the Ass Saver; but I would argue it provides equal simplicity, but with better protection. KISS that mucky butt goodbye!
View the Tate Labs Rain Fly Mudguard at Wiggle (Link)