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Cycling clothing is technically inferior to Outdoor clothing(15 posts)

Cycling clothing is technically inferior to Outdoor clothingFez
Jan 28, 2003 1:44 PM
Softshell jackets seem to be all the rage this year. Lightweight, windproof, waterproof, warm, and have a very slim cut (no bulk). They claim you don't need to layer much at all under them, hence the slim cut and the enhanced mobility. And they are also very warm due to Gore Windstopper and special fleece inside.

So last Xmas the wife bought me one for skiing and tooling around, and today I decided to try it cycling.

This thing is so much better and warmer than my Pearl Izumi Barrier Cycling Jacket. And it keeps me dry. In contrast, the Pearl Barrier jacket has a cheap nylon covering in the front to keep wind and water out, but it doesnt let moisture out very well so I come back soaking wet in perspiration.

The only thing bad about cycling in my softshell jacket is that it is NOT cut for cycling. Which leads me to my rant. Why doesn't Marmot, Mtn Hardwear, Patagonia or NorthFace make these in a cycling cut? Or why don't the cycling manufacturers start using technically superior materials for their jackets?
Why?...because that would make sense. nmeschelon
Jan 28, 2003 1:59 PM
What shops are you patronizing?onespeed
Jan 28, 2003 2:04 PM
I am thanking the cycling gods for my current collection of winter teams jackets made of that same "Windstopper and special fleece" inside stuff. Here in NYC my daily commute from Brooklyn over the BB all the way to Midtown, is only possible with the specially cut and designed for a maximum mobility pro cycling wear that I got off of Pro Bike Kit. I have only to wear a long sleeve jersey and another summer jersey under that to stay warm. My Castelli 2003 pants with just my shorts on under them have been adequate for me to ride in very comfortably.

If I didnt have this "cycling specific clothing" I would not have been able to have kept up my commute throughout these last 3 weeks.

I think on Tuesday riding in the temperature was 9 degrees without windchill.
What shops are you patronizing?Fez
Jan 28, 2003 2:31 PM
I find the best selection of cycling wear is probably mail order, either at Performance online or Colorado Cyclist.

For outdoor wear, there is no shortage of Outdoor "Superstores" that have awesome selection and brands. An REI store is a pretty good example. And the Seattle REI is probably one of the best. But when you go to the cycling dept inside those same superstores, the pickings are usually slim. And bike shops usually have an even worse selection.
Cyling clothing is just a bit different...snwbdrhoon
Jan 28, 2003 2:08 PM
I've been running softshell pants (Cloudveils) for about 2 winters now. They're great (and the bottoms don't seem to get in the way of spinning). I usually can run only a pair of bike shorts until about 35 degrees. After that throwing some leg warmers on underneath (that's what I did a few days ago here in Boston) or if it gets really cold a pair of tights or long underwear.

Cycling gear and Outdoor gear are all species of the same breed. It wouldn't be cost-effective for Marmot, MH, Patagonia or TNF to make cycling specific winter gear because they know that you and everyone else will use the gear for all winter pursuits (and quite honestly how many people do you think in the US are cycling in the winter outside, it's tough enough to get people to ride in the summer).

On the other hand, my USPS rain jacket makes a killer spring skiing and running jacket. So it goes both ways.

Cut is very important so you should take a look at the recent issue of VeloNews (Bicycling also reviewed some of them) which profiled offerings from Cannondale, Castelli, Sugoi, and Louis Garneau. They're all using windbloc and some other water-resistant fabrics that basically is a softshell. They're expensive, but what soft shell isn't?

Happy riding. It's 7 degrees F, time for the trainer!
re: Cycling clothing is technically inferior to Outdoor clothingbugleboy
Jan 28, 2003 2:12 PM
pearl does make such a jacket. Actually all the cycling clothing manufactorers do. You just have something like the zephyr, which is just a windbreaker basically. One of the new materials is call "Event". Some use gore-tex. You just need to ask your local shop about it. It isn't cheap, but neither is northface stuff.
"Event" stuff I saw was just a shell.Fez
Jan 28, 2003 2:26 PM
Looked like a goretex shell competitor. Stiff with a nonstretch nylon w/ laminate and no fleece lining.

The softshells use a nylon that has lots of stretch and is "quieter." And they also have Gore Windstopper fleece or Polartec Powerdry to keep things warm.
re: Cycling clothing is technically inferior to Outdoor clothingraptorUW
Jan 28, 2003 3:10 PM
I love my windproof fleece jacket. It, and tights of similar construction have been the best purchases i've made in a long time.

To answer your availability question, they are out there. All the major makers have a product like this, and pro-team wear is available too.

I own a USPS jacket (made by giordana) - before y'all start laughing - it has one of the tightest, slimmest fits available...thats why i bought it. considering that the jackets are supposed to fit like ls jerseys (mine even has 3 back pockets) & i'm 6'/140, i didn't have much choice. I've been comfortable in it from 45 F to 0 F(w/ windchill) depending on what layers i use..anywhere from ss jersey to two LS baselayers.

i also own biemme A-tex tights. They don't have the nice contour-seams of a product like assos or castelli, but they also retail for 1/2 as much.

I'd recommend the biemme bib-tights to most anyone...i went a size up to allow for some additional mobility & inseam lenght - the windproof fabrics typically are not as stretchable as typical short/tight fabrics.

Friends have the biemme jacket...if you have a squat (or shall i say typical american?) body type, it should fit great, and is also well priced. giordana makes a "plain" jacket that is also priced well.

If searching for a jacket, you'll find that some models have non-windproof sidepanels/underarm panels. These breath better than all-windproof models. I think they have a greater temp range than the full-winter models. however, they are more expensive (castelli/assos/pro-team stuff).
re: Cycling clothing is technically inferior to Outdoor clothingGEORGIADOG
Jan 28, 2003 4:05 PM
I know what you mean! I've been running in a Marmot top this year and it is extremely warm! I only wear it in 20 degree though because it will sweat you to death! It would be ideal for cycling. As for Mtn. Hardwear, I've used the gloves for cycling and they work great.
Not cold enough for your PI Barrier jacket...biknben
Jan 28, 2003 5:50 PM
I'm riding in the teens with my PI Barrier Jacket and think it is a godsend. Is it possible that you are just overdressing. I don't use my Barrier jacket until the temps get down to freezing. Above that it is to warm.

I'm the opposite of you. I'm biking, skiing, and running in my bike stuff. In this unusually cold spell I'm loving my Barrier jacket and Am-Fib tights.
Not cold enough for your PI Barrier jacket...Fez
Jan 28, 2003 7:47 PM
For riding in the teens, how many layers do you have under that PI Barrier Jacket?

I have been using mine in temps between 30 and 40F. Usually have a thermal shirt and a jersey with a full zipneck, since the neck on the Barrier Jacket is not airtight on its own. Also using AMFIB gloves and AMFIB long tights and some sort of hat/ear protection. Feel OK and could go forever, but the feet still get cold, despite using smartwool and a fleece windstopper shoe cover.
2 base layers & LS jersey...biknben
Jan 29, 2003 5:06 AM
I wear a PI base tank (forget the material), a polypro tank, and a long sleeve jersey under the Barrier jacket. On the bottom half, I have bib shorts with Am-Fib tights.

On a ride last weekend, it was 20*. I used a short sleeve jersey instead of long sleeve. The jacket was all I had on my arms. I was comfortable.

If you're drenched in sweat you are dressed too warm. Might want to go with a PI Zephyr type jacket that provide the wind protection without the thermal lining.

Results vary from person to person. Layering requires a little micro-management. I dress to warm up during the ride. If I'm confortable after 20 minutes I'm good for the day. If I begin to get too warm I'll unzip the chest or remove my head covering to vent.
be warm, buy XC skiing gear (nm)Wise
Jan 28, 2003 9:17 PM
be warm, buy XC skiing gear (nm)Suddha
Jan 29, 2003 10:10 AM
REI Headwind jacket - wind/water resistant front, breathable back, long tail cut for cycling.

The REI Hut Hopper jacket is roughly the same, but marketed for XC skiers. The Hut Hopper pants are awesome too, for either Nordic or cycling.

All of these are soft shell garments.

Patagonia has decent cycling apparel as well.
Even for jerseys and shorts.......getoffmywheel
Jan 29, 2003 10:40 AM
Pearl Izumi and Nike seem to be the only ones that have figured it out since they make stuff for other sports.