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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 10-03-06, 12:02 PM   #1
FraAngelico
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Wool

where's a good place to shop for wool clothing?
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Old 10-03-06, 02:57 PM   #2
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Ibex makes incredible stuff. Warm, comfy, durable. Damn expensive. Smartwool does more than just socks and can be found discounted sometimes. Though generally not for cycling, Filson has some remarkable wool goods as well. In any case, just remember cheap wool is often no fun to wear.
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Old 10-03-06, 07:09 PM   #3
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I'm a big Ibex fan, but I can only afford their stuff on sale. They have weekly specials as well as an outlet store. They have a website at www.ibex.com.
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Old 10-03-06, 09:24 PM   #4
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Having never worn wool until last winter, I've learned that some non-merino wools are very dry and itchy and need to be broke in like jeans. The oils from your skin seem to soften the fibers and once broke in, they're wonderful. One sweater was just too itchy so I just rubbed lotion on the sweater, and let it sit for a day or two and then washed it. And that worked well.

I'm considerin the Ibex Breakaway tights but they don't appear water resistent (and I'm worried they'll bind around the knee). Anyone know about these tights?

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Old 10-04-06, 12:54 AM   #5
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MEC had some nice Merino wool stuff for reasonable prices, especially if you can get it on sale.

Otherwise, you can check your local thrift shops and see what they might have in the way of wool. A good thick wool vest, for example, might be just the thing on a cold winter's ride.
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Old 10-04-06, 08:02 AM   #6
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I'd buy wool skivies new, from Ibex, Smartwool, Devold, Filson. A company called Mountain Gear in spokane and on the web often has smartwool tops on sale, also the Ibex sale section like someone else mentioned

mid layers at the thrift stores. Look for a "%100 merino" label in vintage goods for no itch.
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Old 10-04-06, 11:04 AM   #7
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I have a SmartWool med. wt. tee-shirt. Its comfy, has held up through several washings, is great for casual riding and in that capacity it wicks sweat suprisingly well. I'll probably order a couple more.

P.S. Which cycling jerseys use elastic at the arm cuffs and waist?
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Old 10-04-06, 11:26 AM   #8
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For shirts (Zip-T LS), IMO Smartwool is softer than IBEX, and can go through the dryer instead of hanging. REI has a house brand that sells for half the cost of the other two, and is almost as soft as the Smartwool, and still softer than the IBEX. I won't hesitate to continue wearing the IBEX, but wouldn't buy again (other than the Shack Jacket I really want). I wouldn't hesitate to get the REI items again.

In terms of socks, again REI is cheaper and just as soft (though not as fancy styles) as Smartwool. Costco is selling 4 packs of Merino Wool medium weight wool socks for the cost of one pair of REI (~$10). I haven't tried personally, but am told they are just as soft as REI, and they look like they were made by the same manufacturer as REI. I wore the REI socks day in and day out last winter; it was my feet's favorite winter ever.
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Old 10-05-06, 06:11 PM   #9
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I just checked the web sites for Ibex and Smartwool...man that stuff is expensive!
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Old 10-05-06, 06:12 PM   #10
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Australia?
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Old 10-05-06, 06:15 PM   #11
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Australia what?
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Old 10-12-06, 10:58 AM   #12
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thanks everyone, i think i'm going to splurge for some ibex. i'm a pedicabber and will be out all winter here in nyc. hoping wool really does "keep you warm even when wet".
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Old 10-12-06, 11:19 AM   #13
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I know it's been said already but check your local thrift shop and save BIG bucks. I just picked up two very nice wool sweaters for a total of $14. There were so many wool sweaters I had a hard time choosing.
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Old 10-12-06, 11:25 AM   #14
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Originally Posted by Jacob J
I know it's been said already but check your local thrift shop and save BIG bucks. I just picked up two very nice wool sweaters for a total of $14. There were so many wool sweaters I had a hard time choosing.

Exactly ... because a lot of people buy, or are given, wool sweaters because they are supposed to be high quality, etc. ... but then they discover that they are allergic to wool, or it is uncomfortable, or it takes too much effort to clean it, or whatever ... and so a lot of them show up in thrift stores.
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Old 10-12-06, 12:45 PM   #15
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http://www.sierratradingpost.com for deals, as well as http://www.backcountryoutlet.com and http://www.altrec.com/shop/dir/outlet/ for clearance specials etc.

I just picked up a less half price icebreaker 'olympia zip' from ems.com. Woot!
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Old 10-12-06, 01:35 PM   #16
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Anyone know how to recognize SmartWool while at a thrift store? Is SmartWool super thin?

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Originally Posted by Machka
Exactly ... because a lot of people buy, or are given, wool sweaters because they are supposed to be high quality, etc. ... but then they discover that they are allergic to wool, or it is uncomfortable, or it takes too much effort to clean it, or whatever ... and so a lot of them show up in thrift stores.
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Old 10-12-06, 02:04 PM   #17
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Smartwool is thin, mostly, but it's a brand with a little stick figure type logo:
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Old 10-12-06, 02:21 PM   #18
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Hmmmm, I'd love a few pairs of wool socks!
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Old 10-12-06, 03:32 PM   #19
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Hmmmm, I'd love a few pairs of wool socks!
So go to your local Walmart and pick some up!

IMO Kodiak are the best, I've got three pair and I live in them all winter, but they tend to be a little bit pricey (~ $5/pair), however any old work socks will do.
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Old 10-12-06, 03:40 PM   #20
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jacob J
I know it's been said already but check your local thrift shop and save BIG bucks. I just picked up two very nice wool sweaters for a total of $14. There were so many wool sweaters I had a hard time choosing.
I also picked up 5 sweaters of various thickness and weight for $3 bucks each at a local Goodwill. I will admit, not all of them are very stylish, but they are very warm.
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Old 10-12-06, 09:51 PM   #21
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What kind of fit would you guys say smartwool tops have? What about Ibex tops? Are they sized to be worn loose or more form fitting?
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Old 10-12-06, 10:33 PM   #22
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they both make T-shirt type looser garments as well as close to skin. id recommend everyone treat themselves to a nice new, close to skin long underwear top from either smartwool or Ibex. I personally think Smartwool longjohn tops are pretty durable, they don't make any cycling specific tops. for SS jerseys, and winter Knickers, Ibex is great! and good softshells as well....

for itchless performance at the thrift stores, look for the "%100 merino" labels. trust me on this one.
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Old 10-12-06, 10:45 PM   #23
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Ibex is great! and good softshells as well....
.
My Ibex softshell is my most worn item of outerwear, both on and off the bike
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Old 10-12-06, 10:59 PM   #24
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Ok well I'm mixing up washable wool with SmartWool. SW IS probably washable in the washing machine. But how can you tell if a no-name brand can go in the machine? Drier?
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Old 10-13-06, 12:30 AM   #25
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if its a new garment it will have universal care symbols. i think the circle with the dot in it means washing machine. I'd never dry my wool in the dryer, but smartwool brand tops can go in the dryer no problem as well. i doubt any other wool you'd find at the thrift store would be machine driable.
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