Red Rider wrote: I might try some sort of thin leggings though, and some of the merino stuff mentioned sounds very cosy
I find a pair of Skins does the trick with the chilly mornings, cold evenings commuting to and from work.
open topic, for anything cycling related.
I find a pair of Skins does the trick with the chilly mornings, cold evenings commuting to and from work.
If it is icy cold, my tip would be to have a hot cup of Milo and do some some starjumps or whatever to get the blood circulating before cycling or just cycle faster to warm up
No point in wearing insulation if your body is cold - just like putting an ice cube in a thermos, it will stay cold.. If you cycle really slow like my missus then you would never warm up so you would probably need the layers.
I used to cycle in London in the snow and get all hot and sweaty once I got to work if I wore too many layers, thickish gloves and buff as a balaclava which would send steam up and fog my glasses. Then I thought blood is the best way to warm and regulate your temperature so I dressed much lighter with a layer to keep the wind and rain out that was breathable. Plus it was 'normal' to cycle in your office attire so I didn't want to be sweaty, although I just wore my button shirt (saving it from being crinkled) and some weather proof shorts.
Now, I'm in Melbourne and my commute three times longer, I think I'll just put on the wind vest and mudguards. I'm going to stick with the fingerless gloves for now and see how it goes when winter sets in.
Also, baklava would provide a nice layer of insulation, if you eat enough of it...
OP is cycling a 10km commute. At this distance it still reasonably viable to ride in office clothes. I do this (well, a buttoned shirt and 'office-suitable cycling trousers, and my SPD shoes that get changed at work). The most important part of my winter wardrobe is my Rapha short-sleeved merino base-layer top. It absorbs sweat, wicks it away and does not stink. As mentioned earlier I also have a good rainjacket that gives good wind protection too, and if it rains, overpants and booties. For days that are just col air I either wear the rainjacket or a windstopper vest and the full-finger gloves.
I commute 10kms in this and if kunalraiker does not have change facilities this will be feasible for hm. If there are change facilities and lockers it will be an even choice whether to ride in work clothes or do the whole quick-change thing eg. friends of mine who ride to the CBD from out in Northcote about 8-9kms and choose to wear office clothes even though there are change facilities available at work.
I do have change facilities and use them currently, riding with work clothes is out of question as I do sweat a bit and would not like to be in that state throughout the day.
I can assure you, that does not happen. You have a pretty flat commute so few hills to work up a real sweat. On arrival, you will break out in a bit of a sweat, so the trick is
1. Dress lighter, to suit the weather; carry your jacket in your bag, or leave it in the office. In winter wear a merino undershirt to absorb perspiration,
2. Pedal easier for the last 1-2kms,
3. Take a little time to cool down on arrival, relax while locking you bike etc. If possible (not always so for me) avoid going straight into a heated office
4. Go to the facilities and have a sparrow-bath - splash the face; wipe down the chest, neck and under-arms with baby-wipes; apply some roll-on deodorant. All this takes just a few minutes.
In fact in the winter months I rarely have to go through this whole routine as on most cold mornings I barely even work up a sweat.
A bit of sweat is manageable, and contrary to the publicity of the deodorant industry, it will not create BO until bacteria breed up.... takes 12-24hrs generally. Perspiration is after all mostly just water and a bit of salt. Don't get conned into the ultra-clean myth, part of the reason we have such a huge car-dependence going on.
As the motto on my then-teenage son's Lynx said - "never underestimate the power of smell" Utter carp.
That looks great !
I've broken ice going for a dive in a quarry about 10 years ago, New Year's Day !
About minus 3, wind chill about minus 10, was under neath barely zero.
Visibility was great !
If I wore all that I'd cook. I cycle in <5 degrees in shorts, T shirt and a jacket. I still get to work feeling warm enough. Still, we are all different so wear what suits you.
I love cycling in Winter, I rekon the winters seem less cold than they were before I started cycling. Plus, it doesn't really get too cold here (we're not putting on studded tyres!).
For my commuter, I bit the bullet and put on some front and rear mudguards. They don't look too bad, but I'm not really a fan of mudguards, but they're practical and I was honestly surprised at what a difference those Crud Catchers made.
Clipless pedals: I didn't get covers, but I find that if i stuff them with old newspaper (sourced from tea room) and change it a couple of times, they're dry by home time.
Lights - Katmandu have a USB rechargeable set which I used all through last winter and hardly missed a beat, they're on sale now for $30 and are worth that [they went funny for a while but fixed themselves]. Bright but not super bright. I also bought a 1600 Lumen magicshine light off ebay for $150 and it's overkill for commuting, but I use it for winter early morning rides on the MTB as well.
I also got some spoke lights from FocalPrice for a couple of bucks a pop to help side on visibility and they work a treat (be prepared to wait for shipping, takes around a month to arrive from memory).
My Jacket - I got the charcoal one, but bloke at work got the orange one and I rekon for visibility, it would be the better one to get.
Gloves - I have BBB Coldzone gloves for late autumn/early spring and BBB ColdShield (sorry couldn't find a link) for winter.
Pants - I just wear shorts although a mate has bought some leg warmers and swears by them and may be convinced during winter to order some
Also keep a spare pair of underwear and socks in your pack.
I also have a beanie under the helmet which helps the head.
The main points from me are some lights ($30), mudguards ($23), gloves (roughly $50 for the coldshield ones I bought) and jacket ($50 - $80). But as you've probably seen, everyone's different when it comes to cold weather riding. Seems a bit expensive, but stuff should last more than a season, but the stuff I've bought has lasted me 1 - 2 winters and still going strong.
I concur with Tim Re: Ballarat winters, as such I'm going to be buying one of these to keep my chin from getting to chilly this winter or a stubble one....
I was told, I know I know by you guys not to buy the cheap stuff.
Anyway got this cheap wind jacket but it doesn't breathe since there are no vents.
Any recommendations on a cheap ventilated wind jacket, not looking for any thermal properties - just pure wind protection.
Have you considered a windproof vest? I have an excellent one that is windproof front and shoulders but mesh back, keeps me warm in the torso but not overheated. If it's really cold air I just wear my Showers Pass rain jacket with the pit-zips and cuffs open.
"Cheap" depends on your timescale. If it's too cheap, you might have to buy it again before too long, and that can be more expensive over time.
I'm guessing this economic wrinkle is partly the reason why BigW, Target, etc have such big stores and revenues - people keep on saving money buying the same thing every three months
For cheap-over-the-longer-term recommendations, the Mont Hammerhead and Showers Pass jackets get good marks.  adding, these are wet-weather as well as windproof jackets.
Yep, had this discussion with a random bloke in the hardware store, I was buying a good garden fork when he wandered up with his partner and picked up the cheapest one he could find. She asked him why he wasn't buying a more expensive one like 'the other guy' and he replied that he could buy 3 for the price of the one I was holding. So as I walked past I commented that yes, that was indeed the case, but at least I wouldn't be the monkey wasting time by driving back to the hardware store multiple times to buy the same item. The look on the guys face was priceless.
I don't bother with any type of waterproof jacket or anything, they never breath. At the most a windproof vest that can be easily removed if too hot.
I have a 20 odd km commute, so leave about 7am, can be pretty cold out south-westish in the mornings.
On a clear crisp morning - I usually start with 2 pairs of gloves, both long fingered, one a nice toastie pair, the other thinner. 2 pairs of socks, including a thermal pair. Leg & arm warmers, a beanie (cycling specific) this is mainly cause I have no hair (well, I shave my head. I am also slightly follicly challenged. ) and it keeps the ears nice & toastie too. And it's easily removable when stopped at lights. A thin base layer & top & sometimes the wind vest mentioned above.
I usually stop about half way at the most & remove most outer layers. Takes a few minutes, but I am not a fan of the cold.
And a balaclava in your mouth!
I would recommend that you invest what you can afford on a good quality shell jacket that is windproof, water resistant and breathes eg. Gortex Paclite for rain or Gore Windstopper for drizzle. I think a jacket would be fine for your 10km commute but if cycling further a vest would be best as you'll get too hot at the end of the ride even if you have pit zips.
I have all three for various conditions and activities and shop around for a good deal to avoid their heavily marked up retail price. They last for years and you'll use it a lot as you're cycling everyday then you'll wear it when travelling around the world, camping, going out and whatever activity which exposes you to the elements. Think of it as an investment as those cheapies will make you sweat, uncomfortable and will de-laminate in no time, then you'll be a monkey going back to the shops buying a replacement.
However, I believe that you shouldn't waste money on a more expensive item if you will hardly use it eg. a specialised tool which you will only use once or driving a 4WD in the city (w*ankers
I guess now you just have to try what works for you as it will be a trial and error process what makes you more comfortable.
ps. I probably wear more layers once I'm in the office as I'm sitting still in the poorly operating aircon system
Then just be careful going around corners on wet wintery roads.
Ask me about the hole in the elbow of my Ground Effect shell jacket
I still wear it in preference to the cheaper one I bought to replace it. It's just a little bit too ventilated in one place.
That's my experience, too, Lloyd. I went through several cheapies until settling on the ones that have 2.5 layers or whatever the marketeers call them these days. Wish I'd had the guts to spend properly earlier on.
If you don't have the moolah upfront, Kunalraiker, you can settle for an inexpensive vest and some arm warmers you can take off after the first ten minutes of many rides.
same - you go through a development process and start off with the cheapies but then you're better informed of what you want in your next upgrade No point blowing out on something then realise "i should have got one with this..." However stores are pretty good with offering exchanges these days.
but if you're strapped for cash, you gotta stick to your budget or even try and find second hand which I try to do too or just drink less beer...or home brew
Living in Melbourne and commuting year-round, I would almost never wear my nice merino beanie on my commute rides. I am similarly follically-challenged with a no. 1 clippers cut.
I don't feel the cold much so, although follically challenged a beanie is unnecessary for me. The lump of foam I'm forced to wear makes my head sweat enough already.
A decent jacket is essential. I recently bought one and haven't used it yet but jackets are definitely the go. You start out cold with the jacket all zipped up, warm up a bit and you can undo part or all of the front and if you get really warm you can take it off. Very flexible because riding you will feel cold at first with the wind going through you but warm later when you have been riding for a while. I don't wear my jerseys except on warm days so just a T Shirt under my jacket in winter. Don't worry about the legs, they won't get cold in our now mild Melbourne winters (did I mention I don't feel the cold and you should do what suits you?), I just wear shorts.
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