Reducing odors and laundry hassles , the New Spanish Method
I've evolved a new system to reduce the hassle of having to go down three flights of stairs and deal with the laundry room and it's expenses. It's an adaptation of the "Spanish Method"....
First off, for shoes when it gets really cold I do away with clips, booties, and just wear hiking boots and strap pedals. No more cold feet, much less time spent fumbling. Wearing clips in traffic is suicidal IMO anyway.
Wool is now getting re-born in my kit, especially merino, which is awesome, but it's delicate, so wash it by hand in cold water.
I still love the polypro/polyester pile stuff, but we all know that reeks with body odor, because it retains bacteria and maybe oils too.
Sooo, I will scrub down before a ride, the less bacteria on my body, the less in the fabric.
For return to the house,
I put a plastic bin in the shower, like a kitty litter bin. It has a wire handle. I leave it near the front of the tub.
I will jump in the shower with all the pile on. This works best if you shower within a few minutes from coming in the door. Training rides are especially reek-producing. If you wait until the next day, the reek builds and then it snowballs upon itself.
If you stay on top of it, you will have no reek.
So I'll run the shower on my pile, and just brush it down with a light scrub brush and soap, remove each piece, and add it to the bin, which is slowly filling up anyway from the excess shower water.
A few scrunches in the bin with some HOT water will kill the rest of the bacteria etc. You can even do this without soap BTW. The hot water is a sufficient enough nuke, but eventually maybe after session 3, you'll need soap, but not that much.
Let it all soak for a few minutes while you towel dry.
I hang some cargo netting from the showerhead and just stuff the pile in that to hang, it drips dry fairly quickly (15-20 mins). This is what I love about the stuff.
Then I'll toss it in front of an air purifier that I have running anyway, has a small fan, enough to dry it all by morning.
So no running downstairs.
No putting quarters in the washer.
you're using pretty much the same amount of water as showering.
Lots of hot water saved vs. using the washer.
electricity saved in drying.
Ideally, if you do this every time you use synthetics, they won't reek. I have also read that Borax is good to add to the water, I've also used water softener salt , huge bag 4.99. It seems to nuke odors well.
If you decide to use laundry detergent, you can get away with just a tiny capful. Even handsoap works fine, just doesn't "melt" quickly.
You can also use the military "plunger" method in the shower. just plunge everything in the plastic bin like 10 strokes, then rinse. Or use your foot.
If you really want to make the rinse process easier install a drain plug near the bottom of the bin. just remove the cork to let it drain, refill to rinse, then hang dry.
Just set an egg timer or something so you don't forget to take the stuff out of the stall to hang dry. Otherwise it might get mildewey. But in winter in the house with the heat on, I can dry stuff just fine even in the closet, draped over stuff, etc.