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  1. #1
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    waterproof and breathable gloves? do they exist?

    I ride in 45-70 degree weather, so I don't wear gloves for much warmth.
    I've tried many bicycle gloves over the years and I actually prefer Mechanix gloves that are for automotive repair. They are fine in light rain but my hands get soaked for long rides in downpours, where wet gloves are far more uncomfortable than just bare wet hands.
    Just wondering if there is a such a thing as a waterproof and breathable glove that resists downpours yet minimize sweaty hands.

  2. #2
    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Back in the day Swobo had some wool gloves that were my favorites for such conditions (well more like 35-60 for me, wet 60+ hands is fine). Haven't found anything comparable as of yet. The closest is TurfKing Thermal grip gloves, but they're only good for about a half hour in real rain. Maybe an hour in light drizzle/heavy mist.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

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    Certified Bike Brat Burton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by techman View Post
    I ride in 45-70 degree weather, so I don't wear gloves for much warmth.
    I've tried many bicycle gloves over the years and I actually prefer Mechanix gloves that are for automotive repair. They are fine in light rain but my hands get soaked for long rides in downpours, where wet gloves are far more uncomfortable than just bare wet hands.
    Just wondering if there is a such a thing as a waterproof and breathable glove that resists downpours yet minimize sweaty hands.
    They USEd TO exist but I`m not sure whats on the market today. During the 70`s I bought a complete rainsuit made from 1st generation Gortex. It was a bit stiff and hellishly expensive but unbelievably good in heavy rainstorms. Then they went to generation 2 and three and the stuff was more comfortable and fell apart all too fast.

    I still have and use that 1st generation suit but have trashed all the Gortex I`ve bought since.

    The next best thing on the list seems to be a wetsuit and kayaking gloves.

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    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    I have some wetsuit gloves, but find them difficult to dry. Even after 6 hours on a radiator they're still wet in the fingers and they develop a bit of the stink finger. A tad too warm for 50+ and don't breath well.

    Never looked into kayaking gloves.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

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    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    Thinking back to my Swobo wool gloves I thought I'd do a search for wool gloves and the Ibex and Fox River Grippers look like interesting candidates. I probably won't buy them this season, however. Wonder if other riders have tried them. Of course wool's not waterproof but warm when wet and very breathable.

    http://www.rei.com/category/40005931
    Last edited by LesterOfPuppets; 03-12-11 at 12:29 AM.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

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    Sealskinz make waterproof socks and gloves. Their socks are fantastic but the gloves never work for me, they feel too sweaty.

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    Senior Member meanwhile's Avatar
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    Sealskinz work for me, but why not try treating your current gloves with Nikwax? I've known people use it to make even jeans breathably waterproof.

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    Senior Member late's Avatar
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    Old Man Maine

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    Certified Bike Brat Burton's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    I have some wetsuit gloves, but find them difficult to dry. Even after 6 hours on a radiator they're still wet in the fingers and they develop a bit of the stink finger. A tad too warm for 50+ and don't breath well.

    Never looked into kayaking gloves.
    Hi Lester - you`ll probably find that wetsuit and kayaking gloves are made of the same material. Kayaking gloves can be easier to find in some areas and can have more aggressive grip textured palms to assist with holding a wet paddle.

    None of them are easy to wash and dry as the material is actually waterproof and its usually the seams and perspiration that result in that clammy feeling.

    The only technique that works is to literally turn them inside-out, wash and dry the insides, optionally dust with baby powder, and then reverse them again.

    Montreal rain can be both wet AND cold and I don`t mind being wet but cold can be dangerous so ocassionally you might see some idiot out driving on the bicycle paths in heavy rain wearing a shorty wetsuit. That idiot would probably be me. Some people just don`t know when to stay home!

  10. #10
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    I have an older version of these that work fairly well. Spray on some Camp Dry for extra protection from the rain and you should be good.

  11. #11
    SE Wis dedhed's Avatar
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    Waterproof and breathable, in a high exertion use, has been a myth in my experience
    '68 Raleigh Sprite, '02 Raleigh C500, '84 Raleigh Gran Prix, '91 Trek 400

  12. #12
    It's got electrolytes! chucky's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dedhed View Post
    Waterproof and breathable, in a high exertion use, has been a myth in my experience
    +1...if the OP isn't looking for extra warmth then the most breathable and waterproof material will be living skin.

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    Senior Member meanwhile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by dedhed View Post
    Waterproof and breathable, in a high exertion use, has been a myth in my experience
    It's true of membrane based clothing, but I have a Paramo Velez Adventure Light jacket that lets me ride at full tilt in a rain storm without getting much damper than I do riding at the same speed in dry weather. Decent summary:

    http://www.outdoorsmagic.com/product...sted/3160.html

    Basically, the stuff "super-wicks" so fast the sweat gets pushed out even in the rain. I don't think you can buy it in the US but in the UK it has been the standard among really hardcore outdoor types for at least a decade.

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    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    http://www.outdoorsmagic.com/forum/f...dt/4/UTN/8705/

    ... from the same forum shows evidence that they were working on gloves, but since it's now 6 years later and they don't have gloves on their site I think it's safe to say that they've thrown in the towel as it were.

    Those jackets better be pretty miraculous at $200 +++
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

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    coprolite fietsbob's Avatar
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    Consider a Cycling rain cape, it covers your hands so the gloves themselves dont have to be waterproof.
    because the cape is.

  16. #16
    Insane Bicycle Mechanic Jeff Wills's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    http://www.outdoorsmagic.com/forum/f...dt/4/UTN/8705/

    ... from the same forum shows evidence that they were working on gloves, but since it's now 6 years later and they don't have gloves on their site I think it's safe to say that they've thrown in the towel as it were.

    Those jackets better be pretty miraculous at $200 +++
    Yeah... but I was out this morning... in the rain (my wife insisted). I'm consistently amazed at the performance of my Showers Pass jacket. I was actually reasonably dry from the waist up.

    FWIW: I had on my Gore-Tex gloves. Warm enough, but they get sweaty inside. Apparently I am built like an old big-block Chevy: large, heavy, and prone to producing steam.
    Jeff Wills

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    Quirky Grifter LesterOfPuppets's Avatar
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    My favorite shell is by Helly Hansen. I got a Marmot shell to replace my torn HH this year, but it's not as nice. It doesn't have a full mesh liner like the HH so I need to wear longsleeve shirts to be comfortable in it. HH was on sale for $50. I got the Marmot for $80.

    Thinking about getting a couple of GoreTex patch kits and getting the HH back in action for next winter.



    Back on the Glove front I'll have to check out those Sealskinz, although they look a little warm just from pictures on the internet. That and the cost makes me think I'd prefer some of the wool choices I mentioned earlier.
    Last edited by LesterOfPuppets; 03-13-11 at 12:42 AM.
    1980ish Free Spirit Sunbird fixed * 1996 Mongoose IBOC Zero-G * 1997 KHS Comp * 1990-ish Scapin * Lemond Buenos Aires Triple

  18. #18
    Truck Driver Totaled108's Avatar
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    I second the wool gloves, but layer them. I have ridden for over an hr in downpours at 35 degrees, I use army surplus wool gloves, with wool mitts over then, very breathable, not so water proof, but keep your hands warm even when soaked.

    If you are needing to look 'cool' though, you may have to look elsewhere.

    They dry fast too. If its a rainy ride to work and the gloves are soaked, I wring them out, hang them to dry over a small heat source and they are dry by the end of the work day. Even if they are still wet, your body heat will warm them up and they will keep that warmth throughout your ride. Nature made it better then human made for curtain things, this being one.
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  19. #19
    Senior Member meanwhile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    http://www.outdoorsmagic.com/forum/f...dt/4/UTN/8705/

    ... from the same forum shows evidence that they were working on gloves, but since it's now 6 years later and they don't have gloves on their site I think it's safe to say that they've thrown in the towel as it were.

    Those jackets better be pretty miraculous at $200 +++
    I can honestly say that the jackets are completely miraculous.

    Paramo stuff has a very long life span, so the cost (which is more like $300) is amortized over around 10 years. You can wash and re-proof the jacket in a domestic washing machine and even fix a badly torn Paramo with a sewing needle - if you did that to a membrane jacket it would leak through the needle holes. But it's the comfort that's really outstanding - not just the breathability, which is maintained in heavy rain, but the windproofing, venting options, and physical flexibility. My Velez feels like I'm wearing two silk pajama tops one over the other - very soft, not taped seams - I can even role up the sleeves for venting. Plus it replaces a midlayer too - you wear it over just a wicking T expect in very bad weather. Windproofing and breathability are so good that people use them in the Arctic. (Paramo make insulation layers that fit over the Velez so you don't have lose your shell when adjusting your insulation.)

    In case you can't tell: this stuff has completely transformed my winter cycling experience in the UK. I love it to pieces.

    It's only limits are that it is too hot to wear in real summer weather, and that it won't pack really small - you're supposed to wear it all the time and use the venting rather than pack it away. This works for all but about a couple of months a year if you live in the UK. (A which point I carry a Pertex windshirt sprayed with Nikwax in my pocket.)

    But, no, no gloves.
    Last edited by meanwhile; 03-13-11 at 07:46 AM.

  20. #20
    Senior Member meanwhile's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by LesterOfPuppets View Post
    Back on the Glove front I'll have to check out those Sealskinz, although they look a little warm just from pictures on the internet. That and the cost makes me think I'd prefer some of the wool choices I mentioned earlier.
    It might make you feel better to know that they need liner gloves for British autumn and winter weather. And Sealskinzs need re-proofing every so often. Use Nikwax glove-proof. The weak spot of the glove is very mediocre grip, even if they are called "Ultra grips." However, I do not get sweaty hands while wearing them.

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