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Winter cycling shopping list - please comment

llyamahllyamah Posts: 32
edited November 2016 in Road buying advice
Hi all

I am looking to kit myself out for winter cycling and, being fairly new to all of this, I would be really grateful for some comments on my 'shopping list' below. I cycle to work every day (about 6 miles one way) and occasionally go on longer trips (up to around 50 miles). I already have some basic gear (including lights) but I wonder what else I should be getting for the winter.

Am I missing anything / going over the top anywhere? I'm not necessarily looking for comments on the actual products (though any are welcome) - I am more looking for comments on the items / quantities. Thanks in advance.

Mudguards (x1)

http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/sks-raceblade-pro-xl/

Overshoes (x1)

http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/bbb-hardwear-overshoes/

Leg Warmer (x1)

http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/sportful-no-rain-leg-warmers/

Gloves (x1)

http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/endura-strike-ii-gloves/

Base Layer (x3)

http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/dhb-merino-long-sleeve-base-layer-m-200-2/

Jersey (x1)

http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/dhb-aeron-roubaix-long-sleeve-jersey/

Bib tights (x3)

http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/dhb-classic-thermal-bib-tights/

Bib shorts (x2)

http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/dhb-bib-shorts/

Waterproof Jacket (x1)

http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/altura-night-vision-evo-waterproof-jacket/
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  • I would go with 2 base layers, 2 long sleeve jerseys, 2 bib (with 1 x leg warmer) and just 1 pair of tights as unless you really feel the cold you will spend more time in bibs with leg warmers. Add in a thin winter hat as well, something like a Merino beanie that will cover your ears and fit easily under your helmet.
  • cougiecougie Posts: 22,512
    Check out the planet x bundles. Really decent overshoes etc - you'll save a fortune. Get some cheap buffs whilst you're there.
  • sheffsimonsheffsimon Posts: 1,282
    Can you fit SKS chromoplastic full mudguards? Better than the Raceblades, if you can.

    http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/sks-chr ... guard-set/
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    If you don't already have them, some Woolie Boolie merino socks, but only if there's room in your shoes for them. (they'd be counter-productive if they result in your feet being squashed when you do up the shoes)

    Selection of Buffs; you can never have too many. My favourite has a polartec fleece at one end and the thinner stuff at the other so it's quite versatile.

    I also have a windstopper cap with fold down ear flaps which is very good worn under my helmet for cold / wet rides. The peak is good for keeping rain off glasses, and shielding eyes against the odd dickhead with lights on full beam

    I also have a beanie which I wear for very cold but dry daytime rides.

    Oh and I'd echo the earlier comment about proper Chromoplastic guards if your bike will take them.

    This time of year my go to cycling top is my Gore Phantom softshell; windstopper front, very breathable back, kind of water repellent but still warm when damp. Zip-off sleeves turn it into a gilet. Depends how hot you run really..
  • BobbinogsBobbinogs Posts: 4,841
    I think the Raceblade Longs (mkII) are a much better option if you don't have clearance for decent traditional mudguards. Just ditch the flappy front pieces as they do little, having already dumped all the spinning water at the gap for the brake bridge. Yes (same as Raceblades) they are not great for keeping the brakeblock area clean but they are better than nothing.

    For legwarmers it has to be the Nanoflex. They do lose their beading technology (although gentle lukewarm ironing returns this) they are excellent at keeping you warm, even when wet.
  • mostlymostly Posts: 113
    A skull cap, - good and cheap http://galibier.cc/product/windstop-cycling-skull/
    merino liner gloves saves on the washing /drying out glove situation, rab make some quality ones.
    I prefer a 'synthetic' base layer during the winter ie craft - https://www.prendas.co.uk/collections/u ... ase-layers
    A good windproof jacket/jersey and layer up according to the conditions.
  • dinyulldinyull Posts: 2,979
    I would go with 2 base layers, 2 long sleeve jerseys, 2 bib (with 1 x leg warmer) and just 1 pair of tights as unless you really feel the cold you will spend more time in bibs with leg warmers. Add in a thin winter hat as well, something like a Merino beanie that will cover your ears and fit easily under your helmet.

    I'd agree with this.

    I have a couple of pairs of tights that only get used in the really grim/cold weather over winter. Bibs with knee or leg warmers are more flexible and will get you a long way before you have to break out the tights.
  • Thanks for the replies so far.
    SheffSimon wrote:
    Can you fit SKS chromoplastic full mudguards? Better than the Raceblades, if you can.

    http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/sks-chr ... guard-set/

    I'm not sure, to be honest! The bike I have is a Giant Defy 0.
  • dinyulldinyull Posts: 2,979
    Giant do their own mudguards - I'd take a look at those.
  • sheffsimonsheffsimon Posts: 1,282
    llyamah wrote:
    Thanks for the replies so far.
    SheffSimon wrote:
    Can you fit SKS chromoplastic full mudguards? Better than the Raceblades, if you can.

    http://cycletowork.wiggle.co.uk/sks-chr ... guard-set/

    I'm not sure, to be honest! The bike I have is a Giant Defy 0.

    Looks unlikely, just looking at a pic online.

    As above, try these http://www.tredz.co.uk/.Giant-Road-Bike ... _34189.htm
  • kingrollokingrollo Posts: 3,198
    Dinyull wrote:
    Giant do their own mudguards - I'd take a look at those.

    I have the giant mudguards on my defy 2. Much better than I expected - very easy to fit no rattles - haven't had to adjust them yet - think they are only about £20
  • cougie wrote:
    Check out the planet x bundles. Really decent overshoes etc - you'll save a fortune. Get some cheap buffs whilst you're there.
    I'd be very wearing of buying PX clothing in general. I'd say of all the various bits and pieces I've ordered about 50% has been utter tat that's either gone straight in the bin or is still sat it the drawer un-used. Other items have been fine and I've got more than their worth out of them but it's VERY hit and miss and for that reason I've stopped buying from them.

    DHB on the other hand, has been a very high quality across every item I've had.
  • chippykchippyk Posts: 529
    It's a proper cliche but according to one or two of the old 'uns on the Saturday morning run, mudguards should be on all year because you never know if the weather might turn even on a sunny day.

    As for kit, I've some Decathlon kit that's good, nanoflex tights for proper nasty weather or some Bontrager RXL tights that are pretty good except in heavy rain. I'll use my Gabba with a base layer a lot in Autumn. My Rapha winter jersey (archive store) gets a lot of use if it's cold. I've long stopped buying Planet X kit, for the reason I think it's a false economy it's so hit and miss.

    Lip balm, I always get cracked lips if it's bitter cold and glasses to stop my eyes watering. A cycling gap helps keep the rain off my face too. I rarely get cold hands unless it's wet but my feet suffer but I carry some handwarmers to get feeling back in my fingers after a puncture in the freezing rain and sleet.
  • keef66keef66 Posts: 13,123
    I must've been lucky with Planet X clothing then! My £10 bargain neoprene overshoes are still going strong after possibly 6 years. The LS and SS jerseys I got simply refuse to fade / wear out / break their zips; I've passed them on to my son to make room in my drawer for other stuff, and he continues to get good use from them.
  • fenixfenix Posts: 5,437
    cougie wrote:
    Check out the planet x bundles. Really decent overshoes etc - you'll save a fortune. Get some cheap buffs whilst you're there.
    I'd be very wearing of buying PX clothing in general. I'd say of all the various bits and pieces I've ordered about 50% has been utter tat that's either gone straight in the bin or is still sat it the drawer un-used. Other items have been fine and I've got more than their worth out of them but it's VERY hit and miss and for that reason I've stopped buying from them.

    DHB on the other hand, has been a very high quality across every item I've had.

    I'll not argue with you on DHB - thats lovely kit.

    PX have been great for me - my windblock tights are PX - £30 or so.
    I have a casual jacket (meant to be for MTB I guess) gets worn umpteen days a year - must be 3 years old still fine.
    Clubman shorts - used umpteen times - fine.
    Overshoes- lasting longer than the posh ones I had from Endura I think ?
    Jerseys - fine - some tend to have saggier pockets - but the jersey was £10....
    Gilet - seems as good as my rapha gilet.

    I've also had umpteen merino socks from them. The only problem I can think of is that my wife seems to lose them in the washing. And now when I need them for winter - where are they ? Not entirely PX's fault tho...
  • With gloves, I'd layer too (after all, it works for every other part of the body)

    Liner gloves (Gore running gloves or similar), regular gloves, and lobsters for the top. Typical thick winter gloves get sweaty inside or horribly wet (and impossible to dry) if rained on. Layered gloves dry easily and you can add/remove according to conditions.

    I use a headband rather than beanie as my head gets hot but my ears get cold below freezing (they're perfectly calibrated to OC...) A buff cut in two works well.
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • lincolndavelincolndave Posts: 9,441
    I assume you have some decent socks , i find merino wool socks ideal for winter Cycling
  • JesseDJesseD Posts: 1,961
    Very much up to you as some people run hot, some run cold.

    But if I were you I would be looking at:

    2 x decent long sleeve base-layers (Wiggle will be fine or maybe some of the thicker ones from rugby brands from Sportsdirect like Under Armour or the like)
    2 x String Vest type base-layers (layering up is better than thicker layers, I have Giodarnna ones)
    2 x Decent bib-tights – pref rain proof ones (Sportful No Rain ones are good)
    1 x Legwarmer – pref rain resistant ones like Castelli Nanoflex or Sportful No Rain.
    1 or 2 pairs of bibshorts, when the weather gets gold or it’s raining I would defer to bib-tights (I do 85% of my winter riding in bib-tights)
    1 x waterproof overshoes (look at Galiber.com as theirs are good)
    2 x long sleeve jerseys (roubaix material ones DHB are fine)
    1 x Softshell jacket (DHB do a good one)
    1 x autumn glove (thinner one is fine, I bought mine from a camping shop and they are not bike specific)
    1 x winter glove (I have sealskins ones which are good for all but really freezing temps, but would agree with meanredspider’s comments)
    2 x skull cap (Roubaix material type ones)
    Couple of cycling caps (use these a lot)
    1 x rain cap (has a rain proof material on them to stop cold rain getting through)

    And for the bike:

    Mudguards (not race-blades as they are censored )
    Saddlebag with spares such as inner tubes, puncture kit, spare chain link, chain tool (or multi-tool with this on), tyre levers etc
    Obsessed is a word used by the lazy to describe the dedicated!
  • zoomer42zoomer42 Posts: 124
    Thermal neck scarf
  • JesseDJesseD Posts: 1,961
    zoomer42 wrote:
    Thermal neck scarf

    Oh yeah, a couple of these as well, I have 2 from Ebay which are fine, cost around £3 I think and I have a Polar one which was free with a Polar HR watch I bought years ago.
    Obsessed is a word used by the lazy to describe the dedicated!
  • Best advice received on here for me was make sure your toes have plenty of room inside shoes, even if you have to wear thinner socks. It's the air around the feet that warms up and keeps your feet warm, if you cram your feet into shoes due to thicker socks then the benefit is lost. You can get good merino thinner socks (and by thinner I don't mean summer weight, just not the Woolie Boolie type unless you have plenty of wiggle room).
    Re tights - I did automatically go for a couple of cheaper pairs when just starting some years ago, but the past few winters I've worn thermal shorts with leg warmers - just means you need to buy fewer items and you can mix and match to suit the temperatures. Knee warmers for Autumn and Spring as well.
    As mentioned above, the Buff is one of the best inventions ever - so versatile, and they come in some great designs and materials, from the polar buff to a thin merino. Get two or three and one can be worn as a neck warmer.
  • jgsijgsi Posts: 5,062
    Having run through sets of plastic mudguards .. all eventually being rattled to death by the standard sh it british road.. some quicker.. some slower but they all die.
    Bit the bullet and went for PDWs.
    Price makes you wince.. but now after 8 weeks of 200 mles per week... they are proving to be:
    silent
    keeping the bike clean
    keeping me clean
    allowing me to live with the 23mm tyre limit.. but I run tubs that allow 80-90 psi without worrying about pinch punctures.

    Best winter investment yet
  • webboowebboo Posts: 6,054
    Those of you suggesting leg warmers for winter. Are you all riding in Spain or do you like numb nuts. Riding in East Yorkshire to day temps 6 degrees but according to met office a feel like temp of 0 degree I was getting cold wearing wind block tights.
    Leg warmers are a March to October kit item in the North of England unless you spent your childhood living in a cardboard box eating gravel for breakfast :D
  • Ha - I'm in shorts pretty much down to zero (none of your southern North of England softness ;) ) - leg warmers below that. Winter tights over shorts below about -5C - but we're onto Ice Spikers and MTBs down there.
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • Ive never seen anyone in just bib shorts in temperatures lower than 5 degrees c.
    I'm sorry you don't believe in miracles
  • hsiaolchsiaolc Posts: 492
    Your list looks fine.

    You don't need leg warmers if you have three tights. Leg warmers is good for autumn and spring so if you don't have one then a nanoflex one (or any that has wind and water resistance is good).

    As some mentioned a head band or scarf is nice to have. I have one of those rapha hood and it goes protects head and heck from the cold and it is more than enough most of winter. If really cold then the winter hat is very cosy.

    Maybe your feet doesn't get cold? But normally I have very thick winter shocks on with winter over shoe. I even have feet warmers in the shoe on very cold days and it is so lovely but that's a luxury.

    Mudguards I tend to like roadracer MK3 and I have it on normally all year round just to keep my bike cleaner and everything else cleaner throughout the year.

    If you want waterproof feet then go for the velotoze overshoes. Make sure you wear them right to present water ingress into the shoes when it is raining.

    The bibtights from DHB is great but maybe you want to upgrade to the deep winter ones with winder proof and water resistance together with a bit more protection against the cold. I just recently bought them and I think they are great for the price.

    Of course you need gloves and the one you chose doesn't look like it has a lot of cold protection. The only winter glove that I have that I think it really works is the rapha winter glove but I am sure there are others out there that does the job equally. When it is really cold normally I have marino inner glove lining to go with the winter glove to go to the 0c factor.

    For jersey I think the Gabba 2 is a must ( I have many different brand of winder jerseys and they all collecting dust except the specialised event jacket) and with different layers of base layer you can go massive temperature range with them.
  • hsiaolchsiaolc Posts: 492
    Ive never seen anyone in just bib shorts in temperatures lower than 5 degrees c.

    I haven't seen bib shorts but I have seen one guy in shorts and t shirt in zero degree riding. Makes me looks like a wimp.
  • hsiaolchsiaolc Posts: 492
    Ha - I'm in shorts pretty much down to zero (none of your southern North of England softness ;) ) - leg warmers below that. Winter tights over shorts below about -5C - but we're onto Ice Spikers and MTBs down there.

    Very hardcore. I am in full gear blow 8C already! :)I like to feel comfortable. I am sure I can ride in those temp with those clothing but it would be a torture for me.
  • hsiaolc wrote:
    Ha - I'm in shorts pretty much down to zero (none of your southern North of England softness ;) ) - leg warmers below that. Winter tights over shorts below about -5C - but we're onto Ice Spikers and MTBs down there.

    Very hardcore. I am in full gear blow 8C already! :)I like to feel comfortable. I am sure I can ride in those temp with those clothing but it would be a torture for me.

    I hate tights so I'll put up with quite a bit to avoid wearing them. A mate named a Strava Segment on my commute "Cornbeef Curve" in honour of the colour of my legs in winter :oops: :lol:

    I do notice a lot of people wearing head gear at temperatures way above when I would. I only cover my ears at zero too.

    It must be in my genes though. When we first moved to the Highlands, the neighbours were a bit shocked that my 6 year old son was wearing football shorts in the snow.
    ROAD < Scott Foil HMX Di2, Volagi Liscio Di2, Jamis Renegade Elite Di2, Cube Reaction Race > ROUGH
  • Meh, we used to play rugby down to -10 in shorts - nobody would dare wear anything above and beyond the usual shirt, shorts, socks and undergarment of choice or the ribbing would be more unbearable than the cold...

    As for the Northerners & eating gravel for breakfast being behind it - no, personally it's just that I don't (and never have) felt the cold. Worked in Canada (outside job) down to -40C - not a problem at all. Get much above +15C though and I wilt dramatically. Shorts down to 5C; add kneewarmers down to 0C and put longs on below that.
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