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How much kit to have?

SMESME Posts: 348
edited December 2016 in Commuting general
This year I've been commuting (cycling rather than PT) more often. Lately the roads are filthy and sometimes I've cycled home in fog. My kit gets a little damp but dries out well for the next ride. Needless to say it does get quite mucky though.

So, how do you seasoned commuters cope, kit wise? Is it a good idea to have 5 sets if kit, clean for each day of the week? Or is it just accepted that by the end of the week I'll have mud splattered jersey, etc?

And what about tights... A fresh pair for every day, or a quick chamios clean with a wetwipe?

Or maybe somewhere in the middle - 2 or 3 sets of clothing (which would then cater for a rainy day if one lot was soaked)?

In essence, do I buy less sets of good kit, or more of something cheaper?

Cheers,
Steve

Posts

  • The RookieThe Rookie Posts: 27,748
    I keep using them until they look manky and then wash them, if they are wet when I get home I'll put them through a rinse cycle which takes most the spatter type debris out before drying them.
    Helps that I'm in t-shirt and shorts for 11 months of the year though I think. Also while my cross country commute occasionally has some mud I don't get the 'traffic debris' you get in a city made up of rubber and diesel particulates.
  • A chamois will get pretty sweaty after a commute. Personally I would say one day - one chamois otherwise you are storing up potential skin and odour problems.

    Do you have mudguards? That may help protect you from the winter muck.
  • smoggystevesmoggysteve Posts: 2,909
    SME wrote:

    And what about tights... A fresh pair for every day, or a quick chamios clean with a wetwipe?

    Do you wear clean underwear every day? I would definitely change the tights every ride unless you want to risk getting saddle sores. A Bacteria laden sweaty sponge next to your skin is not very hygienic. I would suggest for the slightly less cold days buying some leg warmers you can put on under a pair of shorts instead. This way you can change the shorts every ride and maybe not need to wash the leggings until the end of the week. You can also keep the tights ready for when you really need them.
  • fat daddyfat daddy Posts: 2,605
    how far are you riding

    I started in full cycling kit, but it turns out due to the time spent on the bike I don't require padding my censored so just wear underwear with non padded shorts /shorts and leg warmers / leggings / waterproof trousers depending on the weather.

    outer clothing gets cleaned when it gets too muddy, underwear naturally every day, bits inbetween dependant on how much work I have been putting in
  • New shorts/longs every day. The top depends on how hard I've ridden, and might make 2 days wear.

    But it is possible to do washing during the week you know? Hang it up in a doorway and it'll be good to go next day.
  • I've got two pairs of Vulpine rain shorts that get rotated, three pairs of bib longs (unpadded) that can be worn if it's cool, I don't wear padded anything, just boxers (which obviously get changed every day) and full length mudguards so I don't have to worry about being covered in mud. I'm lucky that I can sit around in work in my shorts.

    Top half I'll favour a Vulpine thermal gilet for the cold and dry with a merino jersey/baselayer (one or the other depending on temp) or a POC AVIP jacket if it's wet.

    Obiovuly a casquette too, I have a Rapha winter one if it's cold, otherwise I just do a pot luck dip.
  • fat daddyfat daddy Posts: 2,605
    But it is possible to do washing during the week you know? Hang it up in a doorway and it'll be good to go next day.

    buy the right stuff and it comes out the washine machine dry after a light spin and you can put it on straight away.

    Cant do this with bibshorts or any thing with an expensive name on it though as you cant spin, heat, cool, look at it without it falling apart
  • dinyulldinyull Posts: 2,962
    SME wrote:

    And what about tights... A fresh pair for every day, or a quick chamios clean with a wetwipe?

    Do you wear clean underwear every day?

    Do you change your boxers every half hour?
  • SMESME Posts: 348
    A chamois will get pretty sweaty after a commute. Personally I would say one day - one chamois otherwise you are storing up potential skin and odour problems.
    Do you have mudguards? That may help protect you from the winter muck.
    SME wrote:
    And what about tights... A fresh pair for every day, or a quick chamios clean with a wetwipe?
    Do you wear clean underwear every day? I would definitely change the tights every ride unless you want to risk getting saddle sores. A Bacteria laden sweaty sponge next to your skin is not very hygienic.....

    Yeah, point taken (that'll teach me to make silly comments without thought when on night shifts!). But, up until last week, this wouldn't have been an issue. Like Fat Daddy, I used to wear basic undies with 'tailored' jogging bottoms until they wore out, which has done for commuting throughout the year. I have a few pairs of padded shorts and just one pair of padded tights (at the moment). AND.... I've worn boxers under the tights! Yes, shock, horror... I know. But for this week it's been convenient - it's easier in the mens changing room at work, and I don't have a pair of Calvin Kleins hanging out of a rear pocket when I do reach work.

    But hence this post - this situation cannot be allowed to continue! Now, going back to joggers with undies is OK until I suddenly decide that, instead of getting a train part way home, I'll cycle all the way - then it gets sore. On the other hand a pair of chamois tights for every day of the week is a big outlay. So I just wondered how regular commuters tackle the problem.
    .......
    But it is possible to do washing during the week you know? Hang it up in a doorway and it'll be good to go next day.
    I live in a 1 bed rented flat, has electric storage heaters and no tumble dryer (or space for one) - this time of year nothing dries that well over night!
    And as for this...
    dinyull wrote:
    SME wrote:

    And what about tights... A fresh pair for every day, or a quick chamios clean with a wetwipe?

    Do you wear clean underwear every day?

    Do you change your boxers every half hour?
    ... wasn't this covered in a topic some weeks back about buying 2nd hand shorts/tights?
    So I'm not going there - I have a few ideas from the replies above, leg warmers, etc.
    As for a fleece jersey, I might just get another of the one I have now and just change when it's wet from rain or too muddy.

    Thank you all, each and every one, for the replies - they've given me something to think about.

    Thanks all,
    Steve
  • LukeTCLukeTC Posts: 211
    I have 3 bibs and 1 set of tights. Usually rotate it, on milder days or when it's not raining i'll chuck on the shorts with some leg warmers, you can probably do a week in the same set of leg warmers if you ain't getting minging in them I've found. Then it's just a midweek spin wash to get me to the weekend and then a proper clean on Sunday.

    As for jersey's you can get 2 days out of one, especially if you stick a base layer underneath.
  • In answer to the original question: Enough that I can wash & dry it between needing to wear it.

    For me that means (at least): 2 pairs longs, 2pairs shorts, 2 winter long sleeved jerseys, 2 short sleeved jerseys, 1 pair of knee warmers, 1 pair of arm warmers.

    In reality I think I have 4prs shorts and 6 short sleeved jerseys though...

    Everything dries pretty much instantly apart from the chamois in the longs & shorts - so in OP's situation perhaps more lower garments required than otherwise.
  • SMESME Posts: 348
    In answer to the original question: Enough that I can wash & dry it between needing to wear it.

    For me that means (at least): 2 pairs longs, 2pairs shorts, 2 winter long sleeved jerseys, 2 short sleeved jerseys, 1 pair of knee warmers, 1 pair of arm warmers.

    In reality I think I have 4prs shorts and 6 short sleeved jerseys though...

    Everything dries pretty much instantly apart from the chamois in the longs & shorts - so in OP's situation perhaps more lower garments required than otherwise.

    Thanks, all sounds sensible. I think another pair of tights, wnd then some legs warmers with my shorts will be quite adequare... Hadn't considered leg warmers previously for some reason.

    Thanks again, all.
  • lancewlancew Posts: 680
    3 sets of summer/winter.

    Quick wash on the machine. Wear 2, wash 2, have one dry to wear.

    I will reuse a jacket/gilet/gloves/hat. Shorts/base/jersey gets a wash every time.

    I have a spare pair of shoes in case of really wet days so that I can dry them properly.
    Specialized Allez Sport 2013
  • wolfsbane2kwolfsbane2k Posts: 2,992
    I ride circa 8 miles each way, - 40 mins in, 30 mins back.
    I started out in may last year with a run on aldi/lidl cycling stuff:
    5 of : shorts ( 3 shorts, 2 3/4) , SS jerseys, LS compression base layers, socks.
    2 of : LS jerseys, leg warmers, arm warmers.
    1 LS rain jacket.
    That did me for summer, changing every day, and I needed to change everything every day.
    Come autumn/winter cooling & the increased fitness, I'm not running as hot/sweaty as I used to, and with only 3 3/4 shorts, change those every 2 days, ( I really cherish my knees) or if I have a particularly muddy ride. I have the same merino SS Base layer all week under a L/S top now, with a fresh one LS top midweek depending on situation. I always change my socks.
    This way it allows me to do a single halo sports wash at the weekend, and it's ready again for the next week.
    Intent on Cycling Commuting on a budget, but keep on breaking/crashing/finding nice stuff to buy.
    Bike 1 (Broken) - Bike 2(Borked) - Bike 3(broken spokes) - Bike 4( Needs Work) - Bike 5 (in bits) - Bike 6* ...
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