General Cycling Discussion - Staying dry in wet conditions.
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09-10-03, 01:51 PM
I was just looking at pic's on CyclingNews.com of a tour in New Jersey called "Tour of Basking Ridge." Really wet. Looks chilly wet. The chilly part is what I would not like.
They look cold while just out in Lycra? If a warm rain, might not be so bad; other than fact, I am sensitive to slipping right now.
But I was wondering.. I have a lycra-like jacket that is water resistant. Think it is a 'windstopper' product...
If the weather is only a little cool, like near 67- 70 degrees (20 degrees C.), why has not someone made cycling shorts/jerseys that are water resistant and keep some warmth.? Has anyone developed such cycling apparel.?
09-10-03, 02:30 PM
It is a fun tour.
The problem is the water inside: so-called breathable fabrics that keep out water and transpire water vapor (sweat) do a good job of keeping liquid sweat inside, as well as rain or mist outside. None of these fabrics is designed for cycling level exercise. They do ok for hiking, walks, sedentary activity but anything that gets up a sweat quickly overpowers. So you can get wet from the rain or get wet from the sweat. My experience is that once you are wet it is really important to block the wind and prevent chilling. Worst cyclling day I ever had was a 2"/hr down pour near the top of a 7mi downhill with air temps in the 70-74F range. Instant chill, shiver and shake. Thought that hill would never end.
I stopped using the jackets, and only use wind block vests when it cools off with long sleeve knitted jerseys for warmth and leg warmers or leggings for the legs when the temp gets down into the 50sF. Steve
09-11-03, 05:25 AM
In the UK a lot of cycling is done is cool damp conditions, it may rain for a little while, then stop. Its hard to find the ideal solution, a lot of riders use a windproof, and carry a waterproof. Some windproofs can wick water away very effectively. Pertex nylon microfibre is used for highly windproff clothing, and combined with a wicking lining, is very effevtive:
Second Michael's statement, although for cool damp read cold damp.
I've found as long as I keep my top half dry and warm, the legs largely look after themselves, but even Gore tex sweats up.
Best solution I have found is an Altura Dalby jacket sprayed with proofing material, and ridden with pit zips, back vents all open.
09-11-03, 08:06 AM
i agree. i have a windproof jacket/jersey (my big purchase last year and it is AWESOME - has thinner lycra in the back and back of arms!). i keeps me very warm as it blocks the wind and has some water-blocking too, but is VERY breathable. it gets wet, but shields the wind so the wetness can be warmed by the body.
as others have said, a true "water-resistant" jacket or pant is just too hot for cycling. i have a cycling shell (Burley) with GREAT pit-zips, front zip and front/rear ventilation that i will wear either over a jersey or (when actually cold - i.e. less than 45F) i will wear over my windproof jersey. i also have windproof lycra pants (thin lycra on the backs) but these are too warm for anything over 50F.
except for long downhills, for cycling, water-proof or most water-resist stuff is just too hot. lycra of neoprene or windproof works better as blocks wind and holds only a little water but so that your body can warm the water, but allows lots of breathing so you don't sweat to death (try riding in a gore-tex hiking jacket or pants in 35-60F and you'll know what i mean - unless it's below freezing then it can be ok)
if you're cycling and the wind is blocked, you stay pretty warm, even when wet.
only other real concern is if you have long stops (>10 minutes) or long descents (then zip up the rain jacket pit-zips!)
i think the best solution is what i do:
* underneath mix of jerseys that wick water
* windproof jacket
* vented rain jacket for hard rain or downhills
* neoprene booties, windproof earwarmer(or hat), windproof gloves --- these are the areas that get cold!
and in the rain you DO NOT stay 100% dry. but then even when it's dry and sunny out you do not stay dry as you sweat!
note: i ride in all weather down to about -20C (0F) - below that it gets difficult to regulate temperature and keep hands/feet warm --- of course if i lived somewhere where it got that cold more than 4 days a year i might learn that too?
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