Am touring from London to Berlin, which cycle shorts?

saucepan10 Posts: 4
edited March 2014 in Road buying advice
I am touring from London to Berlin and haven't toured before so I'll not be riding amazingly hard but have been told cycle shorts are a must, but I wont be able to afford the best, 40 pounds is my limit really, any advice?

Thanks :)


  • Wirral_paul
    Wirral_paul Posts: 2,476
    Bib shorts would always be my choice - cant stand the waistband on non-bib shorts which can get very uncomfortable (for me at least).

    Have a look here....
  • Buy 2 pairs of lusso shorts
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • My tip - clean pair for each day. Lesson learnt from multi day event last year
  • Is it not possible to wash them in the evening then just wear them a bit wet in the morning and being synthetic they will dry quite quickly?
  • northpole
    northpole Posts: 1,499
    To be fair, you could find yourself with more than one day in which you have to ride in the rain in which case shorts being a bit damp won't matter.

    Generally though you'll want to start the day with them as dry as possible - I suspect if you wash them early evening, they should be dry by next morning. I would still make every effort to take a second pair of shorts for a trip of that length.

    Stating the obvious perhaps but also make sure you take sufficient chamois creme for the journey - it will make a world of difference.

  • Wirral_paul
    Wirral_paul Posts: 2,476
    I tried that myself last year in France but never managed to get the pad dry enough overnight - even after absorbing as much into a dry towel straight after washing. I wouldnt fancy wearing a damp pair of shorts myself - must surely risk a higher chance of sores etc?
  • marcusjb
    marcusjb Posts: 2,412
    The route between London and Berlin doesn't go via Southern Europe does it?

    Touring in Northern Europe does have it's hassles with getting stuff dry. However, you don't say if you are camping, hosteling or hotels - as you go up the comfort levels, you often may have a better chance of getting things dry.

    You might get away with one pair in Spain etc., but I wouldn't want to be slipping into a pair of still moist shorts to start my morning off. It is going to greatly increase your risk of getting a filthy infection and your knob falling off (or, if you are female, well, let's not go there - but I am sure you want to avoid it).

    Go with two pairs, wear one, wash one. If the weather is dry, I carry a small mesh bag (the ones you can use for washing delicates etc.) and hang that on the panniers with the stuff that needs to dry that day. Wash the dirty shorts as a matter of priority once you have set up camp (if you are camping) as you may be able to catch an hour or two of evening sun.

    If the weather is wet - well it gets difficult for sure. There are no easy answers that I have found! Hotel and hair dryers!
  • saucepan10
    saucepan10 Posts: 4
    edited March 2014
    I'll be camping most of the time, okay so 2 pairs are almost a must for northern europe, I'll take the advice. Can I use vaseline instead of chamois creme, or is the cream more for preventing infection rather than lubrication?

    Also would it be better to have two different pairs of shorts so the shape is a bit different , so with different stress points/seams/where it rubs?
  • marcusjb
    marcusjb Posts: 2,412
    If you want cheap but effective bits protection - conotrane

    Most chemists will not want you buy that, but use the more expensive sudocrem. Conotrane is easier to apply though.

    As used by a lot of very long distance cyclists.

    Different shape pads - to me, if anything is rubbing/chafing/whatever, it means your setup isn't quite right and no shorts will fully solve the issue.

    Some people seem to accept sores as an inevitability, but I don't think they are. Get the position right and you minimise the risk of them occurring.
  • mercia_man
    mercia_man Posts: 1,431
    Definitely two pairs of shorts and make sure you wash the dirty pair as soon as you set up camp for the night. I try to get them on the line by 4pm to get a chance of drying them before nightfall. Cleanliness is really important to prevent sores on a multi-day tour. A little pressure point can turn into a pimple and then a boil.

    I personally like to use two different types of short because the shape of the pad is slightly different. In my experience, this gives you some relief. I once did a three week tour across France using two identical pairs of Boardman shorts which I had found really comfortable on long day rides. It was a mistake because the pressure points were the same each day. On a subsequent three week ride across France I used two pairs of different Assos shorts and the change each day between different pads was a real relief.

    Any sort of lubricating stuff like Vaseline or sudocrem (or Marcus' recommendation) will help prevent chafing but I feel an antiseptic cream like Germolene (my favourite as it has a local anaesthetic) or Savlon is really useful for rubbing on every night to ease soreness and prevent spots developing.
  • cougie
    cougie Posts: 22,512
    What shorts do you wear now ?