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best pair of waterproof pants?

Old 01-21-10, 08:10 PM
  #1  
meeegun
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best pair of waterproof pants?

hi

i found out today on my ride to work that my waterproof pants are (unfortunately) not exactly waterproof. i am using the sierra designs microlight pants. i have worn them before and not had any problem. but today was a steady amount of rain and i ended up with wet-butt...which is not only unsightly its also uncomfortable! good thing work is a casual place and i was able to take off my wet jeans underneath and just wear my thermal pants and the rain pants. i am now in the market for a more waterproof pair of pants. i was hoping i could get some recommendations on something that will not give me wet-butt on a 2 mile commute in light rain.

specifically, i want something:

1) inexpensive--$50 or less. college student here...

2) breathable is not necessary (but ok as long as its also waterproof). i tend to be cold more than hot and it takes a lot for me to overheat.

3) lightweight and packable

4) completely waterproof--no wet-butt please!

if anyone has a favorite pair of rain pants, i'd love to hear about them

thanks

meagan
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Old 01-21-10, 08:19 PM
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electrik
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Well, i just use standard heavy duty rain-pant... they're sweaty though.

The trouble with any waterproof-breathable is that they will all eventually give you wet-butt since you are squishing the water through the little pores and the pressure and squirming will wear out the DWR coating quick. Consider yourself warned about that $130 pair of rain-pants.

These are totally water-proof a similar fabric would work... but like i said they get sweaty, so not ideal for cold...

Switching to a bicycle saddle that doesn't hold water might help
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Old 01-21-10, 08:41 PM
  #3  
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I wear Marmot PreCip rain pants. They're pretty nice, but also $80 or more.
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Old 01-21-10, 08:56 PM
  #4  
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i use the ones at walmart(also a college income). they were like 20 bucks. completely waterproof, not breathable, cheap, and adjustable sizing including at the ankles which was a huge plus. no issues with quality and i have used them for 4 months...
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Old 01-21-10, 09:39 PM
  #5  
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If you have a wet butt, can I assume that you don't have fenders? Good long fenders are cheaper than a good pair of rain pants (e.g., Showers Pass) and they keep the bike cleaner too!
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Old 01-21-10, 09:59 PM
  #6  
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Originally Posted by electrik View Post
The trouble with any waterproof-breathable is that they will all eventually give you wet-butt since you are squishing the water through the little pores
Never had this happen until the seam seal failed after five years or so.

Originally Posted by electrik View Post
and the pressure and squirming will wear out the DWR coating quick.
Definitely.


Personally I am looking at raceface aqua-not since the fit of the newer MEC pants didn't thrill me, and they've been discontinued anyway. The raceface fabric does away with the DWR coating, apparently, and I've been pretty happy with the jacket so far. None of this is in the OPs price range, though.
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Old 01-21-10, 10:15 PM
  #7  
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Electrik: my saddle is a terry women's butterfly it doesn't seem to hold water, but maybe it does? my pants were only $20. i assumed that since they were rather cheap i wouldn't have to worry about any water coming through on account of them being a fancy (expensive) breathable material...guess i was wrong! i thought i had a standard rain pant, hence me coming here to ask for specific brands that may work since my choice clearly didn't. thanks for the recommendation i checked it out and i think it might be what i need. sweaty is really not a problem for me as i tend to be very cold and it really takes a lot for me to sweat (and when i do it tends to be my back and upper body).

Arcanum: i actually have the marmot precip jacket and find that it is not all that waterproof either but since i am usually pretty layered up the minimal amount of moisture the material lets through isn't a huge issue.

mr fly: no fenders. seems like a hassle to take them on and off especially when i will still end up needing rain pants to keep the rest of my legs dry anyways. even with a fender, the top of my legs would get completely drenched by the rain (this area in addition to my rear was pretty wet by the time i got home today). carrying a complete change of clothes with me back and forth really isn't feasible either (student means lots of heavy textbooks+ no rack or panniers= space is at a premium in the back pack...and a 50 mile commute by train to boot). besides, i am unsure i have enough clearance for a decent fender anyways. probably just the clip on one would work. i have a '98 bianchi eros.

Last edited by meeegun; 01-21-10 at 10:37 PM.
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Old 01-21-10, 11:36 PM
  #8  
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I have some $30 Columbia's I found at Sports Authority. Packable and slips over shoes.
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Old 01-22-10, 01:16 AM
  #9  
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Fenders. They keep the wet off your butt.

Other than that, PVC. http://www.gemplers.com/product/G266...low-Rain-Pants
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Old 01-22-10, 02:30 AM
  #10  
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meg,
No fenders, no problem.
bill

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/te...005&hasJS=true
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Old 01-22-10, 09:30 AM
  #11  
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Originally Posted by meeegun View Post
hi

i found out today on my ride to work that my waterproof pants are (unfortunately) not exactly waterproof. i am using the sierra designs microlight pants. i have worn them before and not had any problem. but today was a steady amount of rain and i ended up with wet-butt...which is not only unsightly its also uncomfortable! good thing work is a casual place and i was able to take off my wet jeans underneath and just wear my thermal pants and the rain pants. i am now in the market for a more waterproof pair of pants. i was hoping i could get some recommendations on something that will not give me wet-butt on a 2 mile commute in light rain.

specifically, i want something:

1) inexpensive--$50 or less. college student here...

2) breathable is not necessary (but ok as long as its also waterproof). i tend to be cold more than hot and it takes a lot for me to overheat.

3) lightweight and packable

4) completely waterproof--no wet-butt please!

if anyone has a favorite pair of rain pants, i'd love to hear about them

thanks

meagan
I'm surprised $20 pants kept you dry for as long as they did!

Is the bike stored outside with the saddle able to take up moisture before you sit on it? Unfortuntely, even some of the best Goretex pants won't keep you dry for very long where there is compression (e.g. your weight on the saddle with the pant material inbetween) on a wet surface. Any water getting thrown on you is going to find a way in somewhere. I looked up your bike and something like these are one option:

Fenders - http://www.rei.com/product/723111

Water getting thrown on your back drips down to your butt......then you have a wet butt.

I haven't seen a saddle yet that doesn't hold some amount of water. A bike saddle is simply a leather/synthetic fabric covered sponge. I looked up your saddle and do not see any features that would shed water. Actually, I see that it is perforated so I would think it would suck up water like crazy and hold it close to your butt. While not sexy, I use plastic grocery bags to cover my saddle when it is in the bike racks and if it is really raining hard I leave it on when riding. I haven't had a wet butt since.

You could try treating the saddle with silicone spray but I would think that would rub off rather quickly.

For added carry capacity (extra clothes), you could get a larger backpack or get a seatpost clamping rack with a bag to go on it (like the Topeak offerings). You just have to watch the weight you put on it. I ride with a messenger bag (work stuff, clothes), Topeak trunk bag (lunch, repair gear, clothes) then navigate into Boston on the subway and it is very doable.

I don't think you'll be finding pants for under $50 that will keep everything from the waist down bone dry. I would suggest plan to be at least a little damp.

Last edited by zanq; 01-22-10 at 10:04 AM.
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Old 01-22-10, 09:39 AM
  #12  
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I have the $20 walmart rain pants. I also use Rain Mates and have fenders on my bike.

I used to use rain chaps with a cape. I was less than pleased with that combination. But it was after all, drier than nothing at all.
I can't wait to use my J&G jacket in the rain. I did have an O2 rain jacket and pants. I felt they lacked durability.

I love my jacket for winter riding. I use the Rain Mates like windbreakers for my legs. Very effective.
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Old 01-22-10, 02:14 PM
  #13  
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I tried Montane Featherlite showerproof pants but they are not proof enough for heavy rain, esp the cold variety. No amount of reproofing with Nikwax can seal them but they are far more breathable and packable than waterproofs.

For this winter I got some Montane Atomics. They are totally waterproof and breathable enough. Ive been using them since November and would recommend them.
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Old 01-22-10, 02:27 PM
  #14  
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I've heard good things about these but haven't used them.

http://www.campmor.com/outdoor/gear/Product___77702

Paul
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Old 01-25-10, 08:34 PM
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You're not going to like this, but what I've been wearing almost every day this winter are Gore Bikewear Gore-tex Paclite shell pants. They list somewhere around $200, but my wife snagged them at REI for less than half of that and the best news was that they were completely paid for with just *part* of our REI Visa card dividend. I have another pair of EMS Gore Paclite pants, but I only use them below 10F as they are for hiking and are quite a bit baggier and accomodate 200W Polartec underneath. My wife found those for me too, for less than 100 bucks. Maybe I should rent out my wife as a Technical Wear shopper?
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Old 01-25-10, 10:30 PM
  #16  
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Originally Posted by asok View Post
Fenders. They keep the wet off your butt.

Other than that, PVC. http://www.gemplers.com/product/G266...low-Rain-Pants
+1 on the fenders and PVC pants. I use the same combination and it keeps me dry. I wouldn't want to ride for long distances in those pants but for my short commute to school they are perfect.

Originally Posted by bmwstbill View Post
I don't care who you are that's funny right there!

Another tip; forget about shopping bags on your seat - a more stylish and practical approach is to use dollar-store shower caps. It's like they were tailor-made for the application and they also double as helmet covers!

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Old 01-25-10, 10:52 PM
  #17  
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This is what I wear, and I live in Vancouver (rainy 9 months out of 12). Loose fit. Paired with a hydrocycle jacket, I'm completely dry after 3 hours of riding in the rain. The price is in Canadian dollars.
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Old 01-26-10, 01:43 AM
  #18  
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I've found there really isn't such a thing as waterproof. All the fancy breathable stuff will leak eventually, and the cheap waterproof stuff keeps in so much sweat I'm soaked anyway.

I've settled for comfortably damp, lots of wool, polypropylene and the like. Even if I'm wet by the time I get to work, it doesn't matter because I feel just fine. Dark colors hide water best
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Old 01-26-10, 03:05 AM
  #19  
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Dunno if you're into camo but there are a lot of military surplus Gore-Tex pants in the $20ish range.
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Old 01-26-10, 03:44 AM
  #20  
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shop shop shop then shop some more

you can find good quality waterproof pants - just keep looking.

I have expensive gortex pants from EMS that I got as a gift for hiking in the rain but they work great cycling too.

last year I got a great cycling specific rain jacket at REI for $50 (that was 50% off!) so keep shopping! ;-)

+1 for the clear shower cap on the helmet

for feet I use rubber overboots I found for $35.
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Old 01-27-10, 02:16 AM
  #21  
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I've been riding inGoretex Paclite pants made by Smms. They work great but are pricey.
http://www.simmsfishing.com/site/pac...n_pant_09.html

Here are some less expensive options.
I haven't used them but the company has a great name for quality and standing behind their stuff.
bill


http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/te...rid=2146251080

http://www.cabelas.com/cabelas/en/te...006&hasJS=true

Last edited by bmwstbill; 01-27-10 at 02:28 AM.
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