Wool Apparel for Hot Weather?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    Wool Apparel for Hot Weather?

    The dry climate here makes technical fabrics perform admirably, but all those quick drying sweat soaked synthetics can make for quite the odor. Any one have some experience on the front range with lightweight wool jerseys, base layers, socks or shorts? Also any care and washing wisdom would be appreciated as well. Thanks Folks!

  2. #2
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    Smartwool socks rock for almost ANY application. Skiing, hiking, biking... I've never had a bad pair of Smartwool socks.

  3. #3
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    indeed, I have a few pairs of smartwool socks for various applications. They have served me well. Do yours ever got those little lint balls all over them?

  4. #4
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    The hiking socks pill a little... doesn't affect anything.

  5. #5
    t.i.t.s.ceo/FR amoeba rep
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    I just started wearing mostly wool this past year-

    smartwool longsleeve baselayer along with
    Dirt Rag wool jersey over that(this keeps me warm on most cold rides) ( i use this same setup for skiing as well)

    Gonna pick up a smartwool shortsleeve baselayer and start wearing that as it warms-

    yah and no stink after a few rides- unless you guys aren't telling me how bad i smell!

    I bought some nixwax woolwash and use half the suggested amount cause its pricey! I wash all the wool together in cold water and lay flat to dry. Havent tried Ibex but also have a Louis Garneau wool and it shrank a bit . or i got fatter!

    REI has a good selection of smartwool but be prepared to pay
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  6. #6
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    I dig Twin Six mid weight wool socks for most of the year. Only time I don't rock them normally is when it is really cold out (less than 20 degrees).

    http://twinsix.com/gear/the-stuff/socks

  7. #7
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    I've an advocate wool, for all seasons..even the CO heat.

    Sure, I have a random collection of synthetic baselayers and old school short sleeve poly button ups rescued from the thrift store, but merino wool, or wool blends are my go to fabrics. I wear wool socks all year long and have owned a large variety of technical wool apparel. The only cotton socks i own match my suit, and I wear that thing about 3 days a year.

    My favorite top is a short sleeve Smartwool jersey from their MTB collection, I think that it's been discontinued. It is actually a 75% wool and 25% poly blend. Nice loose fit, not cut like a road jersey, non-elastic hem, deep front zip and a low collar to block the sun or zip up if it gets cold.

    Favorite socks, Bridgedale by far. They used to make a MTB sock called the Impact, not sure what the current version is...maybe the X-hale series.

    In my experience wool wicks well, dries quickly, and doesn't smell like a toxic event at the end of a long gritty weekend.

    Why subject yourself, and your buddies, to the toxic off gas from synthetics?

    Porch.
    "If we were Vikings, Rocky Mountain aspen stands would be our Vahalla and its singletrack our bounty" - Mtn Flyer Mag #14

  8. #8
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    I only wear merino wool t-shirts to ride in. Make sure you look at the weight before you buy them, 200 weight is going to be pretty warm for summer rides. Anything under 200 is perfect for summer riding. It's hard to find ibex on sale but it's nice. I think icebreaker makes the nicest shirts and smartwool is really nice too. If you are on a budget, you can find it on sale but it's not always easy.
    Plenty of companies make merino wool stuff and it's not going to be as expensive as the brands mentioned in this thread.
    I have a few smartwool bike jerseys that are plain in color that i only wore a few times. I am not a jersey guy so if any one is interested...let me know. size large

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Porchsong
    <snip>
    Why subject yourself, and your buddies, to the toxic off gas from synthetics?

    Porch.
    THe only reason I can think of is that it's way, way, way, WAY cheaper with synthetics.

  10. #10
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    I'm an Ibex fan. But it's pricey stuff.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by SkaredShtles
    THe only reason I can think of is that it's way, way, way, WAY cheaper with synthetics.
    OK, granted. I'll give ya that one. Some of my other favorite shirts were about 2 bucks each at Savers. Wicking polyester, button up short sleeves, full collar to shade my neck, and style all day long, works for me.

    Honestly, some of the old school polys are not so bad in the stink dept. I find that my "new school" high tech shirts that claim to be oder resistant are the worst.

    Porch
    "If we were Vikings, Rocky Mountain aspen stands would be our Vahalla and its singletrack our bounty" - Mtn Flyer Mag #14

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by Porchsong
    OK, granted. I'll give ya that one. Some of my other favorite shirts were about 2 bucks each at Savers. Wicking polyester, button up short sleeves, full collar to shade my neck, and style all day long, works for me.

    Honestly, some of the old school polys are not so bad in the stink dept. I find that my "new school" high tech shirts that claim to be oder resistant are the worst.

    Porch
    Yeah - it helps when you don't give a rat's a$$ how much you stink out your mates.

  13. #13
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    I wear wool year-round. In the summer, I usually wear a 150 g/m2 vented Icebreaker shirt.

    This is my main hot weather riding shirt (stock Icebreaker photo, that's not me)


    But, yeah, the stuff works great in the heat, you just have to go thin and vented, just like any other fabric.

  14. #14
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    Yah- that would be too tight for my taste! i want a little room to wiggle ya know! That is why i like the smartwool baselayers a little room to breath.

    That looks almost as bad as these:
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  15. #15
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    Yep, it's snug, but I don't like loose fitting shirts for trail riding.

    Icebreaker and Ibex do have a few dedicated mountain biking jerseys (usually a little more relaxed fit than what I posted above), but they tend to be thicker fabric and don't have the perforated venting like the above.

  16. #16
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    I've been using Ibex, Icebreaker and other wool stuff for the last few years. I actually stopped using padded bike shorts entirely and just ride in wool undies and gusseted nylon shorts. Anyway...

    My *only* complaint is that the lighter 'summer weight' wool is pretty fragile. I've had to patch up just about all of my base layers after a single season. Still usable but it's a consideration. Any of the heavier weight wool layers hold up well.

  17. #17
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    I have an icebreaker 260 g/m tee for cooler weather and a couple lightweight smartwool tees for summer. I like them better than synthetics for sure.

    For a mid-layer, you can go with a very expensive outdoor designer brand like smartwool or ibex, but you can also get ultra fine merino wool sweaters for next to nothing on ebay. The big disadvantage is they need to be handwashed or they will shrink while the expensive brand name stuff is usually preshrunk and machine washable. But for a mid layer it is a good trade off unless you don't mind spending more.

    Also, if you have a Costco membership, they sell 3 packs of wool socks for $9.99 that are 99% identical to smartwool hikers and are made in the same factory with the same materials. I have owned both for many years now and they are the same quality as smartwool.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by davec113

    Also, if you have a Costco membership, they sell 3 packs of wool socks for $9.99 that are 99% identical to smartwool hikers and are made in the same factory with the same materials. I have owned both for many years now and they are the same quality as smartwool.
    +1 on the Kirkland wool socks from Costco - they are my go-to for all but the warmer summer rides.
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  19. #19
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    I too have gone all wool except for when it is really stinkin' hot. But that's probably cause I don't have a really light weight wool jersey yet.

    A year or so ago I picked up a couple of Swobo merino jerseys off of chainlove that totally converted me.
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  20. #20
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    Cough < theremightbeacertainshopthatisfullofwoolfetishists andhasibex,icebreaker,swobo,andevenalightsemi-syntheticjerseymadeoutofcoffeethatcontrolsstinknat urally >Cough

    Cough< justsayin >cough

  21. #21
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    supercalifragilisticexpialidocious

    Quote Originally Posted by flowtron
    Cough < theremightbeacertainshopthatisfullofwoolfetishists andhasibex,icebreaker,swobo,andevenalightsemi-syntheticjerseymadeoutofcoffeethatcontrolsstinknat urally >Cough

    Cough< justsayin >cough

  22. #22
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    I was gonna say, Salvagetti has wool up the ying-yang. Although I've been really happy with my Defeet stuff and I HIGHLY recommend the UnDwool and Wooleator socks. Sometimes they have sales.

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