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Rain gear suggestions for Solvang Century?(8 posts)

Rain gear suggestions for Solvang Century?MeDotOrg
Mar 6, 2001 8:54 AM
As I look at the 5-day forcast on, I'm getting pretty nervous about riding 100 miles in the rain. I don't normally do much rain riding. Other than neoprene booties, a jacket and gloves, what tips do experienced riders have for a century in the rain? Carry a pair of extra socks in a baggy, helmet cover, etc....?
It's in Southern California right?Alex
Mar 6, 2001 9:01 AM
Neoprene booties?!?!?! You live in Southern California and you own neoprene booties?

OK, down to business - you don't need booties. Nor do you need extra socks. Nor do you need a helmet cover.

If you don't like being wet, bring a light rain jacket. I've done a few rainy centuries and it's actually quite fun if warm enough. I would make sure to have at least two spare tubes. I always flat more in the rain, I think it's due to debris washed towards the curb. And bring the case for your glasses. After a while you'll want to take them off.

Neoprene booties! Good gracious!

Central CA, actually ...Humma Hah
Mar 6, 2001 10:01 AM
... I figure I'll bring a light windbreaker and my leg warmers. I agree -- unless it is quite cold, just get wet. Bring something dry to change into after the ride. I'll also drop by the store to see if I can find a sample-sized container of something like Vaseline Intensive Care to "waterproof" any chaffing.

My first century, a solo effort decades ago, encountered an hour-long cloudburst early in the ride. The biggest problem was causing 2 flats (water rushing in the gutters makes glass chips tumble and makes flats more likely), so have tubes, patches, etc, and maybe a shop rag in a baggy to wipe the tube dry.

Otherwise, I just got soaked. I dried quickly when the rain stopped. And wearing raingear just gets you soaked in sweat. Your choice: soak in clean rainwater, or soak in your own juices.
Thoughtgrz mnky
Mar 6, 2001 4:06 PM
I've seen people take a section of old inner tube and use it like a gasket between the seat post and the top tube, over the binder bolt. The idea is that you avoid a lot of water thrown from the rear wheel running down the slot in the top tube and collecting in the BB. This works better on some bikes with the binder bolt area projecting above the top tube (i.e. OCLV) and is more suited to the less bomber BB's (i.e. Dura Ace).

I find a decent layer of capilne or some poly material that doesn't absorb water and still retains insulating properties to be pretty helpful. I also highly reccommend shorty poly socks like the ones you can find at REI - life always seems much better if your feet are comfy - I find I blast through all sorts of water on the MTB and am still happy. The cotton stuff is for the birds. Try coating the glasses with one of the low friction coatings like Rain-X so the water runs right off and you can still see.
No cotton ...Humma Hah
Mar 6, 2001 4:22 PM
... I must agree with that. I've been known to ride in polyester slacks (I don't own any long-legged riding pants). Polyester dries quickly. You need a dorky-looking strap to keep the cuffs out of the chainring, but I find a well-worn old set of slacks to be remarkably comfortable.

My bike spent an awful lot of time in the rain, even slept outdoors for about 7 years, and I never had any indication of water getting down the seat tube. Inside the frame is pristine, no rust, no evidence of water.

I used to over-grease my bearings, which did provide some weather-tightness, at the expense of mess and drag. At the moment, it is lightly greased, and if I do ride in the rain I'll probably clean and re-grease the bearings afterwards.

I recently got it painted -- the paint on the top tube was worn thru and I'd always had trouble with that. Riding in long pants in splashing mud and grit meant my pants were chronically gritty, and acted like sandpaper. Anyone wanting to protect their paint during rain rides should be conscious of rubbing against the top tube, or apply some sort of protective cover (bar tape maybe).
Thanks for the tips- Anyone use RainX on Prescription Glasses?MeDotOrg
Mar 7, 2001 7:00 AM
I called the Rain-X consumer hotline and they do not recommend using it on glasses because:

1. It has both alcohol and silicon, which could conceivably mix with water and splash into your eye (possible - but I could live with that risk).

2. It may not mix well with any lens coatings or treatments that have been used on your glasses (I guess you'd have to check with your optomitrist).

So I'm wondering if you, or anyone you know, uses Rain-X on prescription glasses? Don't want to ruin my glasses for one race...
My one experience with Rain-X ...Humma Hah
Mar 7, 2001 10:17 AM
... convinced me it works best in a driving rain, above 45 mph.

I generally just slow down so I can make out where I'm going, and carry a soft hanky or some tissues to clean them if they get really grimy.
Rain Capes!MRD
Mar 7, 2001 1:32 PM
I use a rain cape and keep it half unzipped. Since mainly the back and arms get hit by the rain, that's usually good enough. There are many rain capes with side and arm meshing, so you don't sweat up big time. Then i wear a nice baselayer to help with wicking. Sometimes I also wear a cycling cap under my helmet. it gets wet and soaked, but the visor keeps the rain out of my face. If it clears up, you can stick the cape into your pocket.

Another easy fix for the feet is to get goretex socks. Keeps them from getting soggy. Lastly, pearl amfib leg warmers ( i forget the name) keep the legs from getting really cold.