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Commuting Bicycle commuting is easier than you think, before you know it, you'll be hooked. Learn the tips, hints, equipment, safety requirements for safely riding your bike to work.

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Old 09-25-07, 05:26 AM   #1
Big Ron
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Cold weather clothing selection

I came up with this list over the course of a few years of riding and have found it to be very helpful for me to select clothing for the ride in to work. Many people probably have different tolerances to heat/cold than I do, but its still a useful guideline to start with, just shift the temp ranges according to your preferences. Ideally you should be a bit chilly, but not cold as you start out. I typically don't ride in below freezing temps, (had enough of that as a paper boy in Wisconsin) so the list stops there.

60F and up Shorts, jersey, socks, riding gloves, glasses
55-60F Add arm warmers (or long sleeve jersey)
50-55F Add lycra tights
45-50F Add wind vest and long fingered gloves
40-45 Replace riding socks with wool socks, add 2nd layer (or warmer) long fingered gloves
32-40 Add 2nd layer of socks, 2nd layer of tights, 2nd layer of long sleeves, head band.

Above temps assume no heating from sun, no cooling from wind, and no rain. Adjust accordingly for those conditions.
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Old 09-25-07, 05:32 AM   #2
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so riding at 32 in just tights. SOme tights are pretty thin. Some of us feel the chill faster than others. Below 45, I favor insulated tights. I am still searching for the right base layer, so I can ride layers over thick winter jackets.
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Old 09-25-07, 05:41 AM   #3
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You don't seem to wear a base layer. That makes a huge difference in comfort for me. I just buy the cheapest wicking t-shirts I can find. I start wearing a wicking T when temps drop to around 60 or lower. When it gets really cold, say below 40, I wear a long-sleeve T under a long-sleeve jersey, and then a vest over that. Jackets make me sweat too much, so I seldom wear them unless very, very cold.
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Old 09-25-07, 06:03 AM   #4
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There is practically an infinite number of options for cold winter wear.

Leg warmers fill in the gap between 60F and 50F quite nicely.
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Old 09-25-07, 06:09 AM   #5
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I find that tights with 3/4 pants are good down to about 15-20f.
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Old 09-25-07, 06:19 AM   #6
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60F and up Shorts, jersey, socks, riding gloves, glasses
50-60F Add leg warmers and balaclava (Not Baklava). I have asthma and cold weather causes me problems. I need my cold air filtered.
40-50F Add old pair of jeans and a wind jacket
20-40 add wool sweater and shoe covering.
Under 20 I don't ride. If I have a break-down, I don't want to freeze trying to fix my bicycle.

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Old 09-25-07, 07:25 AM   #7
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I second what tarheel said.
I don't start wearing arm warmers until it drops below about 50 or so. I try to dress for how I will feel 5-10 minutes into my ride. A tight base layer makes all the difference in this range. I have a couple of tight, sleeveless Under Armor tops (got them cheap thru a team deal) that I'll wear under my cool max t-shirts. This extra layer can help bridge the gap between the short and long sleeve zone.
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Old 09-25-07, 07:57 AM   #8
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leg warmers

Quote:
Originally Posted by DataJunkie View Post
There is practically an infinite number of options for cold winter wear.

Leg warmers fill in the gap between 60F and 50F quite nicely.
Oh yeah, don't forget the leg warmers. I use knee warmers and break them when the temps are below 60. Keeping those knees warm is the best way to prevent injury. I use knee warmers down to about 45, and then start using unpadded tights over my bib shorts.
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