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Cycling clothes for Spring... What works for you?

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Road Cycling “It is by riding a bicycle that you learn the contours of a country best, since you have to sweat up the hills and coast down them. Thus you remember them as they actually are, while in a motor car only a high hill impresses you, and you have no such accurate remembrance of country you have driven through as you gain by riding a bicycle.” -- Ernest Hemingway

Cycling clothes for Spring... What works for you?

Old 02-15-15, 07:16 AM
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Cycling clothes for Spring... What works for you?

Hi,

This year I decided to get some "proper" winter cycling clothes as my random bits of moth-eaten gym-wear weren't up to the job anymore. I'm now perfectly kitted-out for the colder days in UK with my Gore jacket, tights and base layer... but now we've seen some double-digits in London it's too warm.

I've researched various blogs but I don't really get what I'm reading. Do I need a short-sleeved thicker jersey (like the Castelli Gabba) and arm-warmers? Can such a jersey be worn without a baselayer as the year progresses? Maybe I need a more summery jersey with some windstopper layer for the colder days. Or do I solve that with a gilet?... I just don't know. So many combinations!

Ideally this will be flexible enough to cover me from, let's say, 10C (50F) to 20C (68F).

What's worked for you and what could work for me?
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Old 02-15-15, 07:26 AM
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50F I wear a normal jersey and arm warmers or a long sleeve jersey, a vest (gilet), and leg or knee warmers. Maybe also a cap/beanie under the helmet and toe warmers. 60F and above it's a short sleeve jersey and bibs/shorts.
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Old 02-15-15, 07:31 AM
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Originally Posted by Looigi
50F I wear a normal jersey and arm warmers or a long sleeve jersey, a vest (gilet), and leg or knee warmers. Maybe also a cap/beanie under the helmet and toe warmers. 60F and above it's a short sleeve jersey and bibs/shorts.
When you say "normal" can you give an example? I notice they vary quite a bit in thickness/protection.
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Old 02-15-15, 07:39 AM
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Have a look at my Cycling in Australia in the Spring albums ...

https://www.flickr.com/photos/machka...7625877711979/


The second one from the top is Cycling in Australia - Spring 2014

First one in the second row is Cycling in Australia - Spring 2013

Second one in the third row is Cycling in Australia - Spring 2011

And so on.

(I wasn't in Australia for Spring 2012)

In those albums you'll see photos of both Rowan and me, and what we're wearing.
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Old 02-15-15, 08:48 AM
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As I have seen and I am sure you have to that clothing selection is a personal thing. Some juat seem to retain or lose heat faster or slower than others.

So far, the guide posted in the winter cycling forum on clothing selection has a nice post where they list that they do and has been pretty good for me so far. It goes from real cold to real warm.
https://www.bikeforums.net/winter-cyc...tml#post850391

The other thing is to create a log of what you wear under each condition and come up with your own list based on the clothing you have to wear.

Might be nice to post it here for others to learn from.

Frank
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Old 02-15-15, 08:49 AM
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You don't need a different, heavier short sleeve jersey. I have one long sleeve jersey, and some of my short sleeve jerseys are thinner and lighter than others. Those I save for the warm summer days. I've seen other riders with very heavy long sleeve jerseys, and they look warm. But I've never tried one.

A selection of base layers is good. These should be wicking material, not cotton. For a couple of years, I kept track of what worked for me at different temperatures.

I usually wear warmer gloves. My hands get cold easily. I'll often bring a thinner or fingerless pair to replace the heavy gloves when it warms up.

It's hard to be dressed correctly with big swings in temperature during a ride. Sometimes, if it warms way up, I've sprinkled water from my water bottle on my forearms or my thighs to keep cool. That's helpful.

From coldest to warmest:


Jacket + jersey + layers

Vest + jersey + layers. I have a nice convertible jacket where the sleeves zip off and stash in the back pocket. A few years ago, I would bring a folded piece of newspaper or packing paper to fit under my jersey for a temporary "wind vest". It works great, especially for those rides that are colder at the start.

Long sleeve jersey with various layers: Heavier long sleeve base with a zip neck, thin long sleeve, or tee shirt base layer. Sometimes multiple layers under the jersey.

Short sleeve with a long sleeve base under. This works good for me.
Short sleeve with a tee shirt base.

I've never tried arm warmers.

Originally Posted by Fly2High
As I have seen and I am sure you have to that clothing selection is a personal thing. Some just seem to retain or lose heat faster or slower than others.

So far, the guide posted in the winter cycling forum on clothing selection has a nice post where they list that they do and has been pretty good for me so far. It goes from real cold to real warm.
https://www.bikeforums.net/winter-cyc...tml#post850391

The other thing is to create a log of what you wear under each condition and come up with your own list based on the clothing you have to wear.

Might be nice to post it here for others to learn from.

Frank
Yeah, I've been on group rides where some riders had jackets, gloves, tights and booties while others had arm warmers, shorts, and fingerless gloves.

I did the log thing, and would check it before a ride. "Lets see; It will be 52F at the start, and 61F at the end. I'll check last spring's list..."

Last edited by rm -rf; 02-15-15 at 09:00 AM.
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Old 02-15-15, 10:26 AM
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Lots of advice and options, find what works best for you, but you will not regret buying a wind vest (gilet)
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Old 02-15-15, 11:13 AM
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I live in Florida and tend to ride in the early mornings, so the bulk of my riding this winter has been in the 40-70F range (predominantly 50-65F). I have found that I can wear pretty much the same kit, but change out head cover, gloves, and shoe covers depending on the temperature, and I'll be comfortable.

Here's my breakdown:
60-70F: No helmet liner, full finger cycling gloves, Under Armour Coldgear base layer top, regular summer short sleeve cycling jersey on top, regular summer cycling bibs, Nashbar thermal leg warmers, Defeet wool socks, regular cycling shoes, Defeet slipstream overshoes.

55-60F: Add Gore cycling cap.

45-55F: Change out Defeet overshoes for Gore thermo overshoes.

Below 45F: This is when I switch to my winter bib tights, jacket, & lobster-style gloves (my hands have a propensity to get really cold).

Bottom line, a base layer top, jersey, and leg warmers are really what you need for the temp range you're discussing. I hope this helps!
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Old 02-15-15, 11:15 AM
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Originally Posted by Fly2High
So far, the guide posted in the winter cycling forum on clothing selection has a nice post where they list that they do and has been pretty good for me so far. It goes from real cold to real warm.
https://www.bikeforums.net/winter-cyc...tml#post850391
Frank
That's a great post, thanks
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Old 02-15-15, 12:11 PM
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Originally Posted by part_robot
Hi,

This year I decided to get some "proper" winter cycling clothes as my random bits of moth-eaten gym-wear weren't up to the job anymore. I'm now perfectly kitted-out for the colder days in UK with my Gore jacket, tights and base layer... but now we've seen some double-digits in London it's too warm.

I've researched various blogs but I don't really get what I'm reading. Do I need a short-sleeved thicker jersey (like the Castelli Gabba) and arm-warmers? Can such a jersey be worn without a baselayer as the year progresses? Maybe I need a more summery jersey with some windstopper layer for the colder days. Or do I solve that with a gilet?... I just don't know. So many combinations!

Ideally this will be flexible enough to cover me from, let's say, 10C (50F) to 20C (68F).

What's worked for you and what could work for me?
This is perfect, I have ridden with Merino wool exclusively for many years. Perfect in all weather conditions, hot, cold, dry, wet. Never smells of BO, the perfect material.
Men's Shak City Roller | Ibex Outdoor Clothing Cycling Jersey
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Old 02-15-15, 01:58 PM
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Originally Posted by surgeonstone
This is perfect, I have ridden with Merino wool exclusively for many years. Perfect in all weather conditions, hot, cold, dry, wet. Never smells of BO, the perfect material.
Men's Shak City Roller | Ibex Outdoor Clothing Cycling Jersey
Merino for the win! My socks and my base layer are made from the stuff and I absolutely love it
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Old 02-15-15, 04:18 PM
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I feel like I'm being dumb here but I don't see much mention of these long sleeve jerseys being used without a base layer. Are they intended to only be used with a base layer or can they be worn on their own?
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Old 02-15-15, 05:26 PM
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Originally Posted by part_robot
I feel like I'm being dumb here but I don't see much mention of these long sleeve jerseys being used without a base layer. Are they intended to only be used with a base layer or can they be worn on their own?
Sometimes I wear my long-sleeved jerseys with a base layer (especially if I think it will be a bit cooler out there), sometimes I don't (especially if I think it will be a bit warmer out there).

If it is a long ride, and will start cool, but might warm up, I might wear a short-sleeved jersey under a long-sleeved jersey with the intention of removing the long-sleeved jersey at some point.
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Old 02-16-15, 03:16 PM
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Originally Posted by part_robot
I feel like I'm being dumb here but I don't see much mention of these long sleeve jerseys being used without a base layer. Are they intended to only be used with a base layer or can they be worn on their own?
Either way. For me, a base layer typically is good for 4 or 5 degrees cooler. And a long sleeve jersey is usually okay up to 70F / 21C, so it's great if the starting temperature is around 57F / 14C, and it'll be getting warmer during the ride.

This all depends on sun, how hard I'm riding, how much uphill or long downhills on the ride, etc. And I always feel warmer in the spring compared to the fall.
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