Main Project Inspirations: Cycling wind/water proof jacket

For our main project I went back and forth on what to make. It is truly the hardest decision in this class…

I really wanted to make something for my van, since I am working on building it out. Some of the ideas included making a custom roof rack with a deck and slide out beam to support hammocks. This was a cool idea as I would have to learn to weld, which is a skill I intend to acquire this semester. The aesthetic would have been “van-life.”

Figure 1. Van-life

The other two ideas I had involved electronics. One was a led car window display that would be programmable to say things like, “oops, I’m sorry,” or “get off my tail!”

Figure 2. LED display

The other was a custom sounds car honk with buttons that could be programmed for each different sound.

Figure 3. Custom sounds car horn

But after thinking really hard about what I wanted this project to be, and discussing it with my wife, I went a completely different direction. I decided make something for one of the things I am most passionate about, cycling. The reason for this decision was not only because I love cycling (and I also coach for a local bike team), but because I have hopes to work in the bike industry after graduation. So I wanted this project to put me out of my comfort zone and do something I haven’t really done before, yet it is related to cycling. So I landed on making some sort of clothing article for cycling. What I have in mind is a very light weight and packable wind/rain jacket. And sure, there are plenty of companies that do this and have great products, but I want to go through the whole process of making this on my own, and expanding my skills set. The aesthetic that this embodies is a “cycling aesthetic,” plus a “minimalist aesthetic” since it is light-weight. Below are some images of the inspiration for this product I chose to pursue.

Figure 4.

Figure 5.

Figure 6.

Thank you for reading.

Benjamin Robles


Image References:

Figure 1.

Figure 2.

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Figure 4.

Figure 5.

Figure 6.



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4 Comments. Leave new

  • Hailee Pritchard
    February 23, 2020 5:26 pm

    Hi Benjamin! I love your inspiration behind this project, and will be really interesting to make. Do you have anything specific you want to work differently than other jackets? Are you planning on sewing the materials together? I can’t wait to see how the final turns out!!

    • Benjamin Robles
      February 23, 2020 6:43 pm

      Hey Hailee, yeah I do plan on sewing the materials together. And the jacket needs to be compact enough to fit in a bike jersey pocket and also have a hood that fits over a helmet. But yeah, totally new to me so I might be reaching out to classmates who might have some experience here.

  • Jackson Hootman
    February 20, 2020 4:42 pm

    Hey Benjamin! It’s great to see you are pursing a passion of yours for your main project. I think you have selected an idea that will be a great learning experience. As you start to brainstorm more specific ideas, my question for you would be what can you do to differentiate yourself from other jackets out there? How can you implement more creative thinking in this project? It may be worth talking with your cycling friends to see if they have any complaints with their rain jackets. Perhaps they will point something out you can fix.

    • Benjamin Robles
      February 23, 2020 6:46 pm

      Hey Jackson, yeah think talking to my biking buddies will be a very good thing to do as some ideas might spur from there. As of now, I am just going to prototype and try to even make one. Once I have that down I might implement something different depending on user feedback. Thanks for your comment.


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