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Winter Advice

AdrianStuartAdrianStuart Posts: 140
edited September 2012 in Road beginners
I will admit that I started this summer due to the TdF and Olympics but I am absolutely loving it.

With the winter approaching, I was wondering what do I need to keep me riding in the winter.

Obviously winter clothing etc, but would it be beneficial to have "winter" tyres if they even exist

Posts

  • Godders1Godders1 Posts: 750
    If it’s icy then I’d avoid riding altogether (get a turbo trainer!). You can get spiked tyres but the smallest I know of are 700x32 so probably wouldn’t even fit on most road bikes. Another problem is the effect of salt and grit and other wintery badness on your bike. It’s worth fitting mudguards or even getting a second/cheap bike for winter riding.

    And yes, it’s very much worth investing in decent winter clothing, otherwise it’s a pretty miserable experience (and you’ll probably just stop going out). Stacks of threads on winter clothing if you search.
  • Like wot he says.

    I find continental ultragator skin tyres are great winter tyres,but, for when the weather is really censored a turbo is ideal. I always struggle in winter as after about two hours my "pinkies" are frozen. Some people are more hardy than others.
    Tail end Charlie

    The above post may contain traces of sarcasm or/and bullsh*t.
  • BordersroadieBordersroadie Posts: 1,052
    Muguards, full length, with mud flap, will make it far more enjoyable and will mean you have to clean your chain/front mech/brakes etc less frequently. And you will be much drier, especially your feet.
  • I always struggle in winter as after about two hours my "pinkies" are frozen. Some people are more hardy than others.

    Do they not sell "Winter gloves" or are they pretty much useless? :D
  • t.m.h.n.e.tt.m.h.n.e.t Posts: 2,265
    I always struggle in winter as after about two hours my "pinkies" are frozen. Some people are more hardy than others.

    Do they not sell "Winter gloves" or are they pretty much useless? :D
    They do, but they cut the fingers off them and sell them as "summer gloves" for the 3 days of sunshine we have.
  • slowbikeslowbike Posts: 8,498
    I will admit that I started this summer due to the TdF and Olympics but I am absolutely loving it.

    With the winter approaching, I was wondering what do I need to keep me riding in the winter.

    Obviously winter clothing etc, but would it be beneficial to have "winter" tyres if they even exist
    I have 1 bike - yup - just 1 ...

    no mudguards, no special parts - just ride it ... (ok mudguards would be nice for this winter!) - clean it down after the ride and it'll be as good as ever ... a bit more attention to the chain & cassette is advisable!
    ice & snow you need to be more careful of though ...

    Clothing - some long leggings, overshoes, decent gloves, balaclava and above all a water/wind proof jacket - keep the cold wind out and you'll stay warm (ish!) ...

    Anyone tried carrying warm drinks with them on a ride? Or do you still just find a nice teashop?!
  • Monty DogMonty Dog Posts: 20,614
    I enjoy riding in winter as much as summer, the key is getting the right kit. Clip-on mudguards keep the spray off your bum, otherwise it gets pretty unpleasant, likewise overshoes keep your feet dry and warm. If riding in a group in the wet, not having long mudguards is anti-social as getting a faceful of muddy spray for hours on end is pretty horrible. Accept you are going to get 'damp' either due to rain or sweat / condensation, the key is keeping warm rather than trying to stay dry. Waterproofs are all but useless as they simply don't breathe well enough. How many layers also depends on how hard you are working and for how long.
    Make mine an Italian, with Campagnolo on the side..
  • rc856rc856 Posts: 1,139
    Get a good base layer.
    For some reason I've spent the last couple of winters with a few layers but last winter I eventually got a proper base layer, a Helly Hansen merino wool long sleeved top, and I could wear that under my jacket.
    Less layers but better layers.
  • team47bteam47b Posts: 6,424
    I moved.
    my isetta is a 300cc bike
  • gronygrony Posts: 75
    Was about to post a similar thread myself. One thing I'd like to know whether people still go on training rides on dark winter nights, is it a case of wrap up, stick the lights on and get on with it, or do you scale down training?
  • tenbartenbar Posts: 94
    I enjoy getting out on dark winter nights. Like you say, dress accordingly and get some good lights on. It's great fun although I do avoid it when it's sub zero and there's likely to be ice about, especially if you've got some tasty downhill sections.
  • Duffer65Duffer65 Posts: 341
    I also enjoy riding in winter...UNLESS it's icy or there's heavy snow. I just add mudguards and lights to my bike and wear warmer gear, long sleeve thermal tops or Roubaix arm warmers, bib tights or Roubaix leg warmers, merino cap, gloves, overshoes etc. I don't have a turbo or rollers so it's go out and ride or nothing.
    Where would you be if you fell down a hole?.. Stuck down a hole... in the fog... Stuck down a hole, in the fog, at night... WITH AN OWL!
  • ShutUpLegsShutUpLegs Posts: 3,522
    team47b wrote:
    I moved.

    Best advise.

    Close thread.
  • ProssPross Posts: 25,462
    Some decent lights (even if you don't intend riding when it's fully dark it's worth having some for those grey, gloomy days), mudguards and some fairly rugged tyres for the bike.

    For you - a decent set of bib tights, long sleeved jersey, rain jacket, possibly a thermal jacket, good winter gloves (warm but not too bulky, water resistant is a bonus) and some overshoes. Some people seem to go way overboard in the amount of clothing they wear in winter but I guess everyones comfort levels are different, I prefer to start off slightly cold and warm up rather than start warm and overheat. I use Pro Tarmac overshoes and Pro Ultimate winter gloves, last winter I was riding early mornings at temperatures down to -5 and other than a bit of cold in my finger and toe tips for the first 10 minutes or so these served very well. The overshoes won't keep your feet dry but they protect your shoes, keep your feet warm and keep the worst of the rain off.
  • As others have said, layers are the key for keeping warm, mudguards the key for keeping clean/dry, lights for keeping safe. Lights work well in gloomy weather but also when there is bright low-level sun casting deep shadows. A decent quality softshell jacket is a great friend when the weather is below 10C.
    'fool'
  • As others have said, layers are the key for keeping warm, mudguards the key for keeping clean/dry, lights for keeping safe. Lights work well in gloomy weather but also when there is bright low-level sun casting deep shadows. A decent quality softshell jacket is a great friend when the weather is below 10C.

    Good stuff. Thanks for the replies.

    What recommendations does everyone have in regards to mud guards?
  • bails87bails87 Posts: 13,317
    Crud RoadRacers if your bike doesn't have mounts. I use SKS Bluemels on my CX, which does have them.
    MTB/CX

    "As I said last time, it won't happen again."
  • MichaelWMichaelW Posts: 2,226
    Winter tyres are generally a bit fatter than summer ones to cope with unexpected potholes in the dark. On many bikes you have to choose between wider tyres or mudguards, if this is the case use mudguards; plenty of riders use the same tyres summer and winter.
    Snow needs a bit of tread, ie touring or commuter style rubber. Ice tyres are spiked and need a lot of clearance so are restricted to CX, hybrid or MTB bike styles, ie your backup or "winter" bike.
    You can spend lots on winter clothing but I have many winters of serious riding on fairly cheap stuff. You need a good windproof, heavier than a summer, featherweight version and a good base layer (not cycling specific). A separate waterproof for actual rainfall should be bright, reflective and well vented. Inbetween midlayers are not too critical and woolly jumpers work well.
    Use layers, dont just wear them, add or remove them as needed. A sleeveless insulated layer worn over your shell can be removed easily.
    Feet are always an issue. Winter footwear should have room for some thicker woolly socks and should not be vented.
    Gloves, neck buffs, earwarmers as required.
    For base layers use synthetic wicking materials or good quality superfine Merino. In really hilly country I may take a spare baselayer and switch at the top of a major climb on a cold day.
  • Venting, as mentioned above. Cycling stuff has plenty of vents for heat loss. When this is not so important, tape them up. The slot in the sole of many shoes, slots in the front of the helmet, can all be closed or reduced in the cold weather.
    'fool'
  • hipshothipshot Posts: 371
    3 words. Michelin Krylion Carbon.
    +1 (700x25)
  • unixnerdunixnerd Posts: 2,864
    Anyone tried carrying warm drinks with them on a ride?

    I always fill my bottle with hot water, takes the chill off it even after an hour or two.

    If the road's wet I use my tourer with mudguards rather than get my good bike filthy. Lots of carrying space for extra clothing and waterproofs too. Tourer has Schwalbe Marathons, heavy but lots of grip in the wet and very puncture proof.

    My winter jacket has full length zips from the armpit down. So I can avoid sweating but can also stay dry in a hail storm. Overshoes are a must as are clear glasses to keep the wind out of your eyes.
    http://www.strathspey.co.uk - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible Price.
    Specialized Roubaix SL3 Expert 2012, Cannondale CAAD5,
    Marin Mount Vision (1997), Edinburgh Country tourer, 3 cats!
  • get rid of the clip in shoes and get some normal pedals and thermal hiking boots and forget about speed . thats the only way you will keep your feet from freezing . or just go for a run
  • unixnerdunixnerd Posts: 2,864
    get rid of the clip in shoes and get some normal pedals and thermal hiking boots and forget about speed . thats the only way you will keep your feet from freezing

    The reason I put SPDs on my mtb was that in the wet my feet kept slipping off the pedals. I'd recommend sticking with SPDs over the winter but using overshoes.
    http://www.strathspey.co.uk - Quality Binoculars at a Sensible Price.
    Specialized Roubaix SL3 Expert 2012, Cannondale CAAD5,
    Marin Mount Vision (1997), Edinburgh Country tourer, 3 cats!
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