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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 12-26-12, 04:21 AM   #1
TheQuinch
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Trouser Trouble

Um, hi everyone, first time poster and I figured I'd jump right into the fray.

I've been biking to work for the past few years, about ten kilometers in each direction, and I've been consistently hitting a pants problem - namely, after a couple of months, they start to fray and soon rip, usually around the crotch and thighs. Any advice on how to prevent that?
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Old 12-26-12, 05:38 AM   #2
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a] Wear trousers that aren't cotton only, but that are made from purely artificial fibers, or a blend of the two.
b] Use a well maintained Brooks saddle or a leather one of a comparable brand. So the friction between trousers and saddle is minimized.
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Old 12-26-12, 09:30 AM   #3
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a] Wear trousers that aren't cotton only, but that are made from purely artificial fibers, or a blend of the two.
b] Use a well maintained Brooks saddle or a leather one of a comparable brand. So the friction between trousers and saddle is minimized.
Do the leather saddles really reduce the friction on rides, I thought they were just for show? I may have to look into one for my commuter. Thank you for the advice.
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Old 12-26-12, 09:32 AM   #4
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Get bike specific pants, then switch to your work pants once you get to work?
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Old 12-26-12, 10:02 AM   #5
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^^^^^ This ^^^^^

I'm partial to the cycling pants/tights/shorts method since it means that no matter what the weather, no matter what happens on the way to work (flat repair, mechanical, crash) I have clean dry pants to work in.
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Old 12-26-12, 11:07 AM   #6
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Originally Posted by whitenhiemer View Post
Do the leather saddles really reduce the friction on rides, I thought they were just for show? I may have to look into one for my commuter. Thank you for the advice.
Yes, they really reduce friction. People who use a hard leather saddle often find they need no other cycling-specific clothing; the padded shorts, etc. all become dispensable. The key is a hard, smooth saddle that supports you where you need support, and gives no unnecessary padding.
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Old 12-26-12, 11:25 AM   #7
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I have getting a pair of the swrve pants, as a college student I can wear casual stuff. Does anyone have experience with them?
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Old 12-26-12, 11:45 AM   #8
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I got Russell Sweat pants, a the local Box chain store.. compound knit 100% polyester.
outside smooth, inside fleeced.

50/50 cotton/ poly will work too..
Black hides chain contact marks.. .
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Old 12-26-12, 12:14 PM   #9
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Yes, they really reduce friction. People who use a hard leather saddle often find they need no other cycling-specific clothing; the padded shorts, etc. all become dispensable. The key is a hard, smooth saddle that supports you where you need support, and gives no unnecessary padding.
+1

I have witnessed many a flame war in these forums over Brooks saddles... but I have to say this:
Riding a Brooks saddle may change your cycling habits forever.

Many people misunderstand the purpose of cycling shorts with chamois in them. The chamois isn't primarily for padding... it's there to reduce friction between your butt and the saddle. A properly maintained Brooks saddle's smooth surface almost eliminates that friction. I own many pairs of cycling shorts that only get used for long rides. For anything under 40 miles or so, I wear regular unpadded Nike or Under Armor compression shorts or regular khaki cargo shorts. Cycling specific apparel is optional.

Just so you know how biased I am... I own 10 bikes and 9 of them are equipped with Brooks saddles.
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Old 12-26-12, 04:18 PM   #10
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I'm with the cycling trousers people. I used to think it was ridiculous to buy clothing specifically for cycling, until I started running into the same kind of problems you're having and tried some cycling clothing and couldn't believe how much more durable they are and how much more comfortable I was. Save up some money and invest in some cycling trousers. Money well spent.
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Old 12-26-12, 04:47 PM   #11
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Polycotton trousers work well and there is no need to change at the end of your ride. I get about 1-2 years from a pair.
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Old 12-26-12, 09:03 PM   #12
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WickedOne- I have been using the Swrve cordura/cotton cycling trousers for a while and really like them. They are durable and comfortable and have a gusseted crotch that reduces friction and have just a tad of stretch to them that is really nice. Highly recommended!
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Old 12-26-12, 09:26 PM   #13
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Thanks, I have been looking at there denim ones..
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Old 12-27-12, 08:41 AM   #14
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I used to use trousers years ago and when I switched to cycling specific pants with the wind proof front and breathable back, it made such difference in comfort and durability that I use these all the time now. In the summer, well padded shorts are best of course.
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Old 12-31-12, 08:47 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squegeeboo View Post
Get bike specific pants, then switch to your work pants once you get to work?
That's what I do, but it's a little cold out for biking shorts.
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Old 12-31-12, 08:57 AM   #16
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[h=1]Novara Headwind Bike Pants - Men's[/h]check out REI.com great price!

http://www.rei.com/product/815145/no...121231145548:s
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Old 12-31-12, 09:25 AM   #17
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That's what I do, but it's a little cold out for biking shorts.
You need pants, not shorts. There are many bike specific pants that would likely work well for you.
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Old 12-31-12, 09:37 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by squegeeboo View Post
Get bike specific pants, then switch to your work pants once you get to work?
+1
I have done this since 1973.
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Old 12-31-12, 12:58 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ijsbrand View Post
a] Wear trousers that aren't cotton only, but that are made from purely artificial fibers, or a blend of the two.
b] Use a well maintained Brooks saddle or a leather one of a comparable brand. So the friction between trousers and saddle is minimized.
I like leather saddles, but a side effect of wearing your nice light pants on them is that they can exude oils. You might want to be very ginger with the Proofide if you are going to be wearing you work pants.
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Old 12-31-12, 02:27 PM   #20
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Khaki slacks on a Brooks saddle ? you just put a saddle cover on..

there is a reason why traditional bicycle race shorts and tights were black.

I would not fail to keep the Proofide treatment up,
to preserve the saddle that you put out over $100 to get.

just because you wear light colored pants occasionally..
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Old 12-31-12, 02:34 PM   #21
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The skirt edge of my B17 cut two slices in a crease on the insdes of my dockers, and I suspect my Pro has also been doing this to my pants for a few years. Other than that I just wear Dockers and ride Brooks and it's fine. Since the OP has ripped pants, I recommend Dockers and a normal saddle.
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Old 12-31-12, 03:31 PM   #22
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Cycling pants vs regular trousers depends on the situation.

For regular commuting to and from work I wear cycling pants. My commute is long enough to get a good sweat going and I prefer to have my office clothes clean & dry. (I also shower at work.)

If I'm just going a couple clicks to a local store I'll ride in whatever I'm wearing. I just put on an ankle straps to prevent them from getting caught in the chain.
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