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Winter Cycling Don't let snow and ice discourage you this winter. The key element to year-round cycling is proper attire! Check out this winter cycling forum to chat with other ice bike fanatics.

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Old 11-04-05, 04:13 AM   #1
quitchat
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Base Layer,Cotton or Polyester?

Hi,I'm new to winter cycling.
It doesn't go extremely cold in my city(about 32 degree.F to 45 degree.F).
I'm just wondering what base layer material should I choose,cotton or polyester(coolmax)?
How big of a difference could it be?
Thanks.
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Old 11-04-05, 05:25 AM   #2
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If your commute is 45 minutes or less you can pretty much wear whatever you want as a base layer without serious consequences, it's when you go for longer rides the hightest fabrics become more important.
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Old 11-04-05, 05:52 AM   #3
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Generally you never want to use cotton- you want wool, polypro- or another synthetic. Basically you want something that will wick away moisture to keep you warm while also being able to dry quickly when you have to throw the clothes back on.
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Old 11-04-05, 06:15 AM   #4
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If your ride is short and easy and you dont break into a sweat cotton will do. For more athletic riding or hills, polyester or wool will handle sweat much better.
Hills can be a problem , with rapid changes in work rate and cooling rate. I used polyester tops for all my Just Riding Along in a hilly town.
Generic hiking T shirts and long sleeved tops are cheaper than specialist cycling jersies.
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Old 11-04-05, 06:48 AM   #5
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There's some nice ls base layers for around 20 bucks that work great. They should fit pretty tight and grip around wrists.
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Old 11-04-05, 06:56 AM   #6
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If you have an Old Navy in your area check our their clearance rack. I recently picked up a bunch of "outdoor active" polyester shirts long and short sleeve for about $7 each.

The shirts are "jersey weight". Unlike cycling jerseys they don't have pockets in the back...but you can't beat the price and they make great base layers.
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Old 11-04-05, 10:23 AM   #7
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Base Layer Questions

Base Layers
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Old 11-04-05, 10:33 AM   #8
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Cotton kills. That's an old hiking adage, but it's worth remembering.
Use a synthetic or wool. I like expedition weight thermal underwear tops.
http://www.sierratradingpost.com/xq/...qx/product.htm
http://www.sierratradingpost.com/xq/...qx/product.htm
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Old 11-04-05, 10:36 AM   #9
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Under Armour ColdGear
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Old 11-11-05, 05:25 AM   #10
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Campmor has a good price on Duofold Poly

Lightweight polypropylene is perfect for any moderate activity in cold weather.
100 percent polypropylene with Transpor movement technology.

http://www.campmor.com/webapp/wcs/st...berId=12500226
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Old 11-11-05, 06:43 AM   #11
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I got myself some silk underwear from TJ Maxx. It was $9.99 for the lightweight and a little more for the mid weight.

If you want a little bit of style check out these Brooks shirts.

http://www.runbargains.com/browse.cfm/4,123.htm

They work real well.
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Old 11-11-05, 07:14 AM   #12
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Wal-Mart sells Starter "DryStar" poly shirts in both long and short sleeve (well, no short sleeve this time of year). Some are the smooth nylon feel shirts while others are a brushed cottony feel. I have several of the cottony feel type and I love 'em. They go for under $8. They also have wind pants (I'm wearing some now). I wore these wind pants on Wednesday when the temp was about 28 deg. My legs were slightly cool to start but warmed up quickly.
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Old 11-11-05, 07:39 AM   #13
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I would look at some better base layers like made from Craft.. I found some deals on there base layers at: sierra trading post..

http://www.sierratradingpost.com/sea...or_results.htm

Most places rarely put there items on sale.. They are great and they make another model for very cold weather called the S3 windblock..

http://www.coloradocyclist.com/commo...42,37047,37456
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Old 11-11-05, 08:06 AM   #14
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I wear a nike pro fit shirt for my base layer. OMG it is tight!
I've lost quite a bit of weight but discovered I have a ways to go before wearing this base layer on its own. I look like I'm pregnant.
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Old 11-11-05, 11:04 AM   #15
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I like a poly base layer but I like cotton on the top. this seems to give me a wide range of temps I can handle without overheating or getting cold. about 50 to about 35 degrees. in summer I tired a 85% poly 15% cotton shirt and it was cooler then the pure poly shirts.
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Old 11-11-05, 05:45 PM   #16
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Cotton is rotton.

I switched from polypro to wool because it seems to keep me warmer even after I stop, cool down and then start riding again. It tears more easily though and hence doesn't last as long.
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Old 11-11-05, 09:58 PM   #17
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Merino wool is nice when it's cool. Doesn't stink like polyester after you sweat in it. Avoid cotton.

http://www.ibex.com/F05/Products.php...&Category=1035
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Old 11-12-05, 04:25 AM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ritehsedad
Wal-Mart sells Starter "DryStar" poly shirts in both long and short sleeve (well, no short sleeve this time of year). Some are the smooth nylon feel shirts while others are a brushed cottony feel. I have several of the cottony feel type and I love 'em. They go for under $8. They also have wind pants (I'm wearing some now). I wore these wind pants on Wednesday when the temp was about 28 deg. My legs were slightly cool to start but warmed up quickly.
I also have some of the Wal-Mart Starter "DryStar" shirts. They are a great value. Target has a line of polyester shirts and pants from Champion called "C9". They are inexpensive, and well made. They have them in store, as well as, online.


http://www.target.com/gp/browse.html...&node=10825231
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Old 11-12-05, 06:40 AM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Walkafire
Under Armour ColdGear
I agree. I have two shirts. They are expensive, but they last (I wash them in gentle). I can get down to about 20F with just the ColdGear and a nylon shell. My commute is usually 25-45 minutes each way in the winter, depending ont he weather and the route. (Record slow time-60 minutes. Record fast time-19 minutes.)

That said, I'll check out the cheaper stuff the next time I'm at a Target.

Last edited by Daily Commute; 11-12-05 at 06:47 AM.
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