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  1. #1
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    Long Cold Winter Commuting Support Thread 2017/18

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  2. #2
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    78 F and sunny here in Boston today. I 'll check back after turkey day.

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    I'll be back when Bedward's lake has frozen over

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    Might be a few more weeks. We're supposed to hit 80F here for the next few days.

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    Its already pretty cold in the mornings and there is snow in the mountains - it might be time to buy the Bar-Mitts. Last year, my hands were frozen so many times that I decided that Bar-Mitts are going to be essential this year.

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    ^^You'll be happy with them. They make a remarkable difference. Sometimes I have to take my gloves off in the winter if it is close to freezing and my hands are usually cold.

  7. #7
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    Cold in the mornings now here in Denver. We had the first "snowstorm" of the season last week too. Good times
    Whiskey

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    We're just starting to get frost. As far as bar mitts go, you can usually get ATV bar mitts for 1/2 what bike bar mitts. The main difference? Price.

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    ^^^^I second ATV bar mits. Mine may have been less than 1/2. I use them to keep my hands dry in cold rain as well.
    18" rigid Unit

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    https://youtu.be/cFPVWR2jzI4

    Some tips how to stay warm when its cold. I think most will have enough experience already but always nice to have a reminder and maybe even something new

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    Here in Colorado Springs it's been unseasonably warm, but I commuted in mid-30s temperatures on Monday. Everything but my toes were great, even sweating. I've got to get me some chemical toe warmers or electric socks to make those feet work. Even with insulated shoes, the last 30 minutes of my 90 minute commute wreaks havoc on my poor toes.

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    Got my schwalbe marathon winters yesterday: 2x20" bikes, 2x24" bikes and my 29ers.
    Only lights left to get. Commuting to kids' school will increase from 8 km to 10 km, one way, within a month due to moving.
    I'm guessing it'll be fun, at least some days.

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    I want to be a commuter, but today is only my second trip into work on the bike.

    I'm riding home when I get off at 4am, it'll be a perfect 65, but supposed to be a pretty good storm rolling in at 330a.

    Bring it


    Or maybe the wife will come pick me up haha

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by NesquikNinja View Post
    I want to be a commuter, but today is only my second trip into work on the bike.

    I'm riding home when I get off at 4am, it'll be a perfect 65, but supposed to be a pretty good storm rolling in at 330a.

    Bring it


    Or maybe the wife will come pick me up haha
    I said "Bring it" one time last year and ended up riding my fat bike through 9" deep streams that used to be intersections and roadways. Honestly, I didn't mind that, but the MUP parallels a pretty major roadway for a while an I was getting pushed around by waves formed by Semi-trucks blasting through that 6"-9" deep water at 45 mph. Pretty sure I still have water in my left ear from that.

    My winter commute season will start on new wheels as I managed to trash the road wheelset on my commuter and failed to salvage the rear rim on the MTB wheelset. At 208# plus a backpack, I think 32 spoke MTB wheels are the lightest wheels I can use on the road bike without repeat issues.

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    Good luck guaruska!

    NN I would think about it. What kind of storm is that? I rode once dspite a storm and ended up being blown around and climbing over fallen trees several times. Since then I have set limits on wind and lightning.

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    The storm waited til about 530 to hit!!!

    It was a windyyyyyyyyy ride home though

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    Can't say I'm a huge fan of windy days. I had two rides in a one month span two years ago that were 40-50 mph with another 5-7 mph added in for gusts. Preferred riding into or with the wind. On the 29r I kept thinking I was going to get blown over or have my wheels blown out from under me.

  18. #18
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forster View Post
    The most expensive bike in the world is still cheaper than the cheapest open heart surgery.

    Looking at your signature reminds me of a quote, apropos to this thread, and attributable to a number of our winter riding peers: "The most expensive studded tires cost less than the cheapest ER visit".

    Looking forward to winter.

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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclingdutchman View Post
    Good luck guaruska!
    Thanx. I'll c how long they "last", hehe. They do enjoy the commute, even more now that I got an app to measure speed (and distance, among other things). They get to 40 kmh (25 mph) on the slopes. Average just above 22 min on the 8 km.

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikesee View Post
    Looking at your signature reminds me of a quote, apropos to this thread, and attributable to a number of our winter riding peers: "The most expensive studded tires cost less than the cheapest ER visit".

    Looking forward to winter.
    That's no kidding. My ER visit and 8 hour stay with surgery for a fractured elbow would have been north of $20K without insurance. It was still nearly $1,800 in deductibles with insurance.

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    Quote Originally Posted by BCTJ View Post
    Its already pretty cold in the mornings and there is snow in the mountains - it might be time to buy the Bar-Mitts. Last year, my hands were frozen so many times that I decided that Bar-Mitts are going to be essential this year.
    I was toying with getting serious about year round riding and seen some mitts for low to mid $20's. They were advertised for scooters but a few good reviews by mtn bikers so what the heck ? They look like they do the job and I'm not out a lot of money if I don't get real into it.

    I'd have spent more for gloves and they'd be too bulky for the finesse of shifting and braking. We are still in some 60's and 70's with the occasional 35 degree days and high 20's at night. I'll get to try them out pretty soon though.
    In the Middle Ages, the biggest mistake was not putting on your armor because you were 'just going down to the corner.'

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    Quote Originally Posted by mikesee View Post
    Looking at your signature reminds me of a quote, apropos to this thread, and attributable to a number of our winter riding peers: "The most expensive studded tires cost less than the cheapest ER visit".

    Looking forward to winter.
    I think I have said that. Except it was "cheaper than a broken collar bone". On a side note, I have some 29er Gazza Extremes for sale.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Forster View Post
    That's no kidding. My ER visit and 8 hour stay with surgery for a fractured elbow would have been north of $20K without insurance. It was still nearly $1,800 in deductibles with insurance.
    Yeah, OTB with concussion and split skin, no broken anything, though the upper mandible was close, a lot of stitches, and the whole bill was over $10 G with $8 G for the ambulance. The studded snows were $100.

  24. #24
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    First 0C ride of the year today. Coyote almost hits my front wheel right out of the chute. Funny how you can be less startled by a wild dog than a farm dog. Must have something to do with the fact that Coyotes generally avoid humans and farm dogs will chase and bite anything.

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    ^^Wow, I've only seen a coyote once and it was when it was strongly warning me and my dogs to get away from whatever it was protecting in the woods. We were headed in the other direction and it came out to make sure we were moving along. I did hear one howling at the moon on a ride 2 nights ago.

    OK, I'm checking in, winter is well on the way. Today was the first real cold weather ride.

  26. #26
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    Today was 37 degrees when I left my house. I wore jeans for the first time since last March, gloves and a beanie under my helmet. Not looking forward to this.
    I like turtles

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    First cold ride for this Floridian was 50F this week. HAHA. Yes that's cold for us. What socks do you guys use to keep your feet warm? I'm going up north in January for vacation. Hoping to ride too if I get a chance(family vacation). I know wool is the way to go but I'm noticing some socks have 32%, some have 70% wool. Do you guys stick to riding specific socks or are any wool socks ok?

  28. #28
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    I like thin or mid-weight Darn Tough socks best. I've got some cycling wool socks (thinner) and Cabelas Wool socks. I pick socks that feel dense and fit in my shoes. Since I ride HV privateers and have a shim under the insole to help them fit (I'm between the regular and HV sizes) I can always take that out if I need more room. Same with my Lake 145s, I wear a 48 but winter shoes run a size small typically. The Lakes only come in 48 or 50 and the 50 is a true size 14 so I shim it too. I make my shims out of cork head gasket material from the auto parts store, but you can get away with any material really, I've used cereal box cardboard in the past too.

  29. #29
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    Was 38F this morning here in Vegas, ouch! That's cold for us so soon. Might have to where the long pants on the commute this week.
    Quote Originally Posted by DIRTJUNKIE View Post
    some weird crazed desert dweller.

  30. #30
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    I buy different thickness Smartwool socks for varying degrees of coldness.
    I like turtles

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    24F this AM in Boise Idaho. I have alot of money invested in winter bike clothing, so all is good the past couple of decades

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    45F this morning with a forecast of 30F, wish they'd get this straight. I hate having to lay out all the winter clothing options every morning.

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    ^^We got your 30F. You're welcome.

    I like Smart Wool, Darn Tough, Le Bent, Ice Breaker and a few other wool socks. Typically the more wool the better for me mostly from an anti-stink perspective.

    The cheaper WigWam socks aren't as good. Amazon has a brand called "People Socks" that are 70% merino and they are a decent sock for cheap $$
    https://www.amazon.com/4pairs-Premiu.../dp/B009CCS0HC
    (Although I just read some reviews that they aren't as good as they use to be)

  34. #34
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    ^^We got your 30F. You're welcome.
    Thank You, I really mean it!

  35. #35
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    Still unpacking from moving. Just found my base layers and biking jacket.
    I'm in a much better mood now.
    I like turtles

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    Quote Originally Posted by Forster View Post
    Click image for larger version. 

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    Just a reminder, it is Northern-Hemisphere Ride your bike to work in the winter week this week. My last day at the current job is Tuesday and I don't start the new job until January 2nd so I think I'll ride by the old office and wave joyfully on my way to getting coffee. Should be able to pile up some serious miles.

  37. #37
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    Second time this week I bet against the weather forecast of freezing rain riding and got caught mid-ride on a 20 mile ride testing my new commute to work. Shame, I'd just gotten the bike de-grimed from the last bike ride in freezing drizzle. One of these days I'll learn. After 34 years of commuting you'd think I'd know better.

  38. #38
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    If you haven't learned yet you probably never will.

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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    If you haven't learned yet you probably never will.
    I'm getting better at it. At least there wasn't 1/4" of Ice covering everything this time. You do find out quickly though that your Pearl Izumi skull cap isn't as waterproof as your Helmet rain cover. At the end of the day you do get to look back and say "That was pseudo-epic, I deserve a scotch." So it all balances out.

  40. #40
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    In the past I have been a fair weather commuter but I am getting fat and lazy again. Gotta start riding my bike back and forth to work again as I can't get myself to do any other form of exercising. Just about 4 miles each way, Wondering if jeans will be a bad choice. We'll see.

  41. #41
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    Quote Originally Posted by Birddog1148 View Post
    Wondering if jeans will be a bad choice.
    Jeans are never a bad choice when you have the right tool for the job:

    Long Cold Winter Commuting Support Thread 2017/18-beachcruiser.gif
    I will suffer no butt-hurt fools!

  42. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flamingtaco View Post
    Jeans are never a bad choice when you have the right tool for the job:

    Click image for larger version. 

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    Got one, hadn't intended to ride it tho

    Sent from my SM-T567V using Tapatalk

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    Quote Originally Posted by Birddog1148 View Post
    Wondering if jeans will be a bad choice. We'll see.
    Really depends on the temps and conditions. Denim is typically not considered a high performance material in terms of insulation or comfort while cycling or other winter activities. My favorite combination so far for stupid cold temps is nylon snow pants, over sweatpants and if needed, underarmor long johns. Layers, loose fitting, lots of flexibility. None of that would help me today though. It's -10F here and that's below my self-imposed limit. Can't keep the lungs warm enough without more gear than I have.

  44. #44
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    16 degrees today. Good thing I don't have work.
    I like turtles

  45. #45
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    0F and only getting colder this week.

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    Well I ordered some over pants from sportsman's guide. I don't want to have to ride the cruiser, last time I think 2 old men called me pee wee. Think the coldest I have ever been was -28 ambient when we came out our tent at the Northern Warfare school at Ft Greely, Ak. But we used snowshoes there.

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  47. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Birddog1148 View Post
    Well I ordered some over pants from sportsman's guide. I don't want to have to ride the cruiser, last time I think 2 old men called me pee wee. Think the coldest I have ever been was -28 ambient when we came out our tent at the Northern Warfare school at Ft Greely, Ak. But we used snowshoes there.

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    Yup, it gets that cold it becomes hard to solve the breathing hard/keeping the lungs warm/not fogging up the goggles equation on the bike. I remember temps down to -10F in Survival School, -20s in Duluth (XC Skiing at -16F), and -28F in Fairbanks (doing the coffee disappear trick) but I've dialed back to +10F as my minimum. Should reach that today here around 1300.

  48. #48
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    My commute is a combination of a folding bike and the railroad. In warm weather I just wear shorts but on cold days I wear jeans. Not really ideal. I do change into a uniform when I get to work but I'm really not interested in wearing my whole winter biking outfit into the city every day.
    My other issue is I have a 35" inseam. Not a lot is available that fits me.
    I like turtles

  49. #49
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    I often ride in jeans too. By now I have switched to stretch jeans or softshell pants. Especially the endura urban stretch pants are very office worthy and comfy on the bike too.

    When its colder I wear a windstopper pants over them to preserve some warmth and to keep the wind out. When its getting below freezing I wear usually a padded winterpants from craghoppers over it. Thats enough for me so far since we dont have much frost here.

    What temps are you riding in?
    Last edited by cyclingdutchman; 12-27-2017 at 12:51 PM.

  50. #50
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    Cotton is a really bad idea because a lot more moisture gets trapped and will chill you to the bone if you have a mechanical or have to stop for some other reason.

    I wear synthetic shorts with tights over them and 3-4 synthetic layers on upper body. Occasionally I throw a wool layer somewhere in there in extreme cold conditions. I don't generally ride when it is below zero F (a rare occurrence where I live).

    High 20's F and snow flurries on my morning commute.

    Winds will be 10-15 mph this afternoon and not much warmer. No problem for a <6 mi commute home... roughly half of it is in the woods.
    【ツ】 eDub 【ツ】

  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclingdutchman View Post
    I often ride in jeans too. By now I have switched to stretch jeans or softshell pants. Especially the endura urban stretch pants are very office worthy and comfy on the bike too.

    When its colder I wear a windstopper pants over them to preserve some warmth and to keep the wind out. When its getting below freezing I wear usually a padded winterpants from craghoppers over it. Thats enough for me so far since we dont have much frost here.

    What temps are you riding in?
    What are endura urban stretch pants? I will have to look them up. My goal is to not have to change when I get there. Last time I tried riding in mildly cold it was my hands that got cold and maybe my ears and honestly I wussed out after that. A fresh high and tight will definitely require a better hat than the ball cap I normally wear but I finally broke down and ordered a helmet. And I have some of those things that go on the handle bars. It's cold here today, single digits but teens and 20s would probably be more normal or warmer.

    I looked those pants up, I'm not hip enough for them
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    Last edited by Birddog1148; 12-27-2017 at 04:21 PM. Reason: added info

  52. #52
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    It's going to be 13 degrees tomorrow morning when I leave for work. I'm driving to the train and taking the subway when I get to Manhattan.
    This is the time of year I break the Dahon down, service everything and replace the cables and brake pads and give it fresh tires.
    Know how many mechanicals I've had? Zero.
    I like turtles

  53. #53
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    My XT 9sp shifter is getting cranky about 10F, I believe the position cam is not rotating... release trigger is smooth and quick all the way to the stop, but no click, no release. I'll keep hitting it, eventually it works as advertised.

    The derailleur is not off center, the cable is properly released, it's just the release mechanism that's slow to get to where it needs to be. Anyone experience this?

    If you've got the new Camelbak bike bottles with the 2.0 valve... flip the bottle upside down to clear water before heading out. If water freezes above the valve, it's a lot of ice, you may not be able to break it up by biting the valve cover. Lesson learned.

    Apparently my Sigma computer doesn't show temps below 14F. Apparently that's what $40 gets you these days. That and an LCD that takes 5-6 seconds to change at those temps.
    I will suffer no butt-hurt fools!

  54. #54
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    ^^I have a shifter that gets grumpy in the cold too. Mine doesn't catch but if I load the lever up or down while shifting it will. Taking it apart and cleaning out everything you can helps too. I sprayed mine down with WD-40 then wiped/soaked what I could out of it. They don't need much for lube.

    Nope, I rode yesterday at -16F. My commutes at those temps are so much work that I wasn't up for another today. You'll notice this picture was taken from the dash of my slightly warm car. I think this is the first time I have skipped a ride due to temperature alone.
    Long Cold Winter Commuting Support Thread 2017/18-capture.jpg

  55. #55
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    -22???????? Where the hell do you live?
    I like turtles

  56. #56
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    Maine. The temp was varying from -16F to -19F for the whole drive and it bottomed out at -22F in the parking lot at work.

  57. #57
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    I shoulda known. My uncle lives in Freeport and he was telling me about the cold and the snow on Christmas day.
    I like turtles

  58. #58
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flamingtaco View Post
    My XT 9sp shifter is getting cranky about 10F, I believe the position cam is not rotating... release trigger is smooth and quick all the way to the stop, but no click, no release. I'll keep hitting it, eventually it works as advertised.

    The derailleur is not off center, the cable is properly released, it's just the release mechanism that's slow to get to where it needs to be. Anyone experience this?

    If you've got the new Camelbak bike bottles with the 2.0 valve... flip the bottle upside down to clear water before heading out. If water freezes above the valve, it's a lot of ice, you may not be able to break it up by biting the valve cover. Lesson learned.

    Apparently my Sigma computer doesn't show temps below 14F. Apparently that's what $40 gets you these days. That and an LCD that takes 5-6 seconds to change at those temps.
    The Factory grease is cold affected in many shifters, I've gone the spray lube route as well but I use a spray lithium grease (very light). You may also have cable/cable housing issues. I have more shifting issues related to rear derailleur cable/cable housing than anything else. With any of the bite valve camelbacks in the winter, I always squeeze the bottle a few times pointing upward to clear the remaining water. On my camelback pack I usually blow air through the tube until I hear/feel bubbles in the bladder. Below 20F the bladder is the only way I can ride the 45 minutes-1 hour of a commute without my water freezing up.

  59. #59
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    It's been cold here in the Midwest as well, but because the kids were off school, and their extra-curricular activities were cancelled during the holidays, I had the time to bike commute to work...so I wasn't going to waste the opportunity.

    I'm lucky to have a pretty awesome commute...60% dirt two track and 40% singletrack spread over 12 miles. All of it groomed or plowed in the winter. I rarely encounter a car on the ride.

    It's been cold every morning (mid negative teens), and warming up to about 3 degrees for the ride home.

    Long Cold Winter Commuting Support Thread 2017/18-img_5171.png

    Long Cold Winter Commuting Support Thread 2017/18-commute-temp.png

    Long Cold Winter Commuting Support Thread 2017/18-commute-road.jpg

    Long Cold Winter Commuting Support Thread 2017/18-img_4209.jpg

    Surprisingly everything has worked really well on the bike. Including the following components which are can sometimes be troublesome in the cold, depending on brand/model.

    -Brakes: Guide RSC
    -Shifter: SRAM X01 Eagle
    -Dropper: Crank Brothers Highline w/ WorlfTooth Lever
    -Lights: Light and Motion Urban 350 & Taz 1200 (batteries don't like the cold, and indicate low charge right away, but they have yet to go out)
    -Tail Light: Lezyne three LED flasher, same story as the head lights...
    -Tires: 45 NRTH D5 & Wrathchild, Studded

    The only trouble I had was that the sealant in my tires froze, and it wasn't able to seal some really small pin holes in the tire sidewalls that opened up from running really low pressures int he cold. It resulted in a slow leak that would take about 8 hour for the rear tire to lose pressure.

    Clothing has been working great too. Very comfortable for up to 1.5 hours, where the toes start to get chilled, might need to add toe warmers for the longer rides. Depending on the level of exertion and speed, my thumb and index finger can get cold early in the ride.

    Feet:
    -45NRTH WolfGar boots, one layer light wool and one mid-weight wool socks-Japanther Insoles (better insulated)

    Hands:
    -Hestra Army Leather Heli 3 finger mitts.

    Torso:
    -Two thin base layers up top.

    -A Mavic jacket I bought on closeout a few years ago.

    Legs:
    -Summer bibs and leg warmers.

    -Patagonia Guide Backcountry Ski pants (I'm looking for a cheaper alternative before I wear these out)

    Head:
    -Gore Face Mask / Balacleva

    -45 NRTH lightweight wool cycling cap

    -Light tint two layer lens ski goggles.

    -Giro Montaro helmet
    Last edited by brentos; 12-29-2017 at 12:09 PM.

  60. #60
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    ^^Nice work. Good account of the gear you need for the cold. But stopping to take your glove off to take pictures...PRICELESS. At what temp did your Garmin stop displaying anything? I'll get plenty of chances to test my cold riding skills next week because we're stuck with these temps for as far as they are forecasting with high temps in the single digits.

  61. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    ...At what temp did your Garmin stop displaying anything? I'll get plenty of chances to test my cold riding skills next week because we're stuck with these temps for as far as they are forecasting with high temps in the single digits.
    The display on my Edge 500 goes completely blank at -6 deg. It's slow to respond below 8 deg. Have fun next week! It's not supposed to warm up much here either...

  62. #62
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    ^^Yup, I have the same one and it goes blank at about the same time. Mine reads about 4-5 degrees high so I don't get the badass/dumbass creds I deserve.

  63. #63
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    I can't remember it ever getting into the negatives here, I thought it was fairly cold this morning at 14F but I don't feel the need for anything special at those temps. Long sleeve jersey and a softshell, mittens and insulated boots worked just fine for my morning romp.

    You guys are hardcore.

  64. #64
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    Quote Originally Posted by bedwards1000 View Post
    ^^Yup, I have the same one and it goes blank at about the same time. Mine reads about 4-5 degrees high so I don't get the badass/dumbass creds I deserve.
    That's funny, mine reads about 5 degrees warmer than any other thermometers we have outside too!

  65. #65
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    My lcd display stops responding at -10C already but when I go inside I notice that it recorded everything as usual. Is that also the case with your sigmas or do they stop.working completely?

  66. #66
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    Mine records as normal.

  67. #67
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    Well I did an experiment this morning. light base layer, jeans, army boots with wool socks, poly hoodie and Army windbreaker PT top, surplus beany under my helmet and Odier handlebar mits with surplus mechanics gloves. It has warmed up considerably here in Northern Ohio, almost 20 with light wind and snow flurries. About 3.21 miles in about 25 min. My commute is .3.86 miles. Now my right thumb was numb at the end but I don't think it was cold. Worse part was I havnt ridden since August and very little all summer before that. So I really think that for the commute I have the winter will not be bad at all.

  68. #68
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    Long Cold Winter Commuting Support Thread 2017/18

    It's been in the single digits here (west Michigan) for a week and a half, tomorrow it's supposed to get up to 19*f with little to no snow and I'm trying to convince myself to take the fatty to work. I've got about 2 miles of cruddy sidewalks that are usually covered in plow spray, then 7 miles of "paved" trail that probably has about 3-6" of snow (will be slow but should be fairly smooth) and another mile or so after that of sidewalk to work. I've got all my gear laid out, panniers packed with work clothes, and lights charging, but it's so easy to say that I'm going to be too tired after undoubtedly staying up late to watch the college football playoffs. Someone tell me to quit being a baby and just do it.

    Sincerely,

    Man whose discipline resolution has so far not changed in 2018

    Edit: decided to drive out and check the conditions of the paved trail, glad I did. It was either 10" of powder/ice or frozen foot holes. Not feeling that right now, will try again at some point, hopefully some rogue snowmobilers will pack it down at some point.
    Last edited by kyle_vk; 01-01-2018 at 08:24 PM.

  69. #69
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    Figured this was the appropriate spot for a cold weather question:
    I recently bought a Crossrip 3 with a full 105 groupo. This last week I have experienced some weird hydraulic brake issues. While on my ride (1hr ride), my lever actuation is normal upon first compression. But once I engage the brakes once again, the next time I feather the brakes, I have very very minimal lever pull in order to engage the brakes. This pattern happens each and every stop I experience on my way home. Both front and rear. I am using Shiamno.
    This has happened only in this past week and a half in these frigid NH temps.

    Am I experiencing the cold weather affecting the Shimano mineral oil at such cold weather?
    If so, what is causing this intermittent issue? I have not bled these brakes since I bought the bike 4mths ago, but have not had a reason to do so.
    I have had Shimano Saint brakes on my fattie that saw countless winters without issues..


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  70. #70
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    I don't think it's a cold fluid issue, sounds more like a bleed issue to me.

  71. #71
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    Quote Originally Posted by Classy View Post
    Figured this was the appropriate spot for a cold weather question:
    I recently bought a Crossrip 3 with a full 105 groupo. This last week I have experienced some weird hydraulic brake issues.

    How cold are we talking?

  72. #72
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    This has been the past week+. And is looking like will be the trend in the foreseeable future.


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  73. #73
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    Quote Originally Posted by Classy View Post
    This has been the past week+. And is looking like will be the trend in the foreseeable future.

    Not cold enough to matter. Bleed 'em, and if that doesn't solve it look for a bad seal impeding fluid flow.

  74. #74
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    Quote Originally Posted by mikesee View Post
    Not cold enough to matter. Bleed 'em, and if that doesn't solve it look for a bad seal impeding fluid flow.
    Good advice. I've seen a few of those J kits pose issues.
    In the mean time, I'm on the fattie for my commutes!

    Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk

  75. #75
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    Quote Originally Posted by Classy View Post
    Figured this was the appropriate spot for a cold weather question:
    I recently bought a Crossrip 3 with a full 105 groupo. This last week I have experienced some weird hydraulic brake issues. While on my ride (1hr ride), my lever actuation is normal upon first compression. But once I engage the brakes once again, the next time I feather the brakes, I have very very minimal lever pull in order to engage the brakes. This pattern happens each and every stop I experience on my way home. Both front and rear. I am using Shiamno.
    This has happened only in this past week and a half in these frigid NH temps.

    Am I experiencing the cold weather affecting the Shimano mineral oil at such cold weather?
    If so, what is causing this intermittent issue? I have not bled these brakes since I bought the bike 4mths ago, but have not had a reason to do so.
    I have had Shimano Saint brakes on my fattie that saw countless winters without issues..


    Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk
    I get the same thing with the Shimano brakes on my fatbike. They are fine when it's warm but when the temps dip below 0F the lever travel is almost 0. I've used other Shimano brakes with mineral oil without the problem. I did have something weird happen today. I set the bike down on it's side and when I picked it up I had no rear brake until I pumped the lever.

    I am really doubting the bleeding/bad seal advice because it happens repeatedly in the cold and it is both the front and rear at the same time.

  76. #76
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    Been rough. It was just shy of 60 this morning

  77. #77
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forster View Post
    Below 20F the bladder is the only way I can ride the 45 minutes-1 hour of a commute without my water freezing up.
    If you want to use bottles, the insulated camelback podiums get me through an hour and half at 15-20F, starting off with room temperature fluid.

    I should note that the bottle that had the frozen water in the valve was on the bike in the garage while I slept during the day. Right beside the bike on the steps of a ladder were my two older bottles with the smaller openings to the valve. One of them had water sitting on the valve that did not freeze. I think the larger opening of the 2.0 bottles permits a greater thermal loss that the heat from the water inside the bottle cannot keep up with (thermal transfer through the bottle and into the cap).

    Not an issue, just an observance.
    I will suffer no butt-hurt fools!

  78. #78
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    Quote Originally Posted by cyclingdutchman View Post
    My lcd display stops responding at -10C already but when I go inside I notice that it recorded everything as usual. Is that also the case with your sigmas or do they stop.working completely?
    The fluid inside LCD displays "thickens" to the point where the metal particles suspended in it cannot orient. This has no impact on the functionality of the sensors or processor used to record information. There's not really anything ELECTRICAL wise within these computers that would be affected by even extreme cold, but the plastic housing or wire sheaths could be susceptible to cracking at extremely cold temps if struck or moved excessively, which could lead to corrosion of internal electrical components, contacts, connections, etc.
    I will suffer no butt-hurt fools!

  79. #79
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    Quote Originally Posted by Classy View Post
    Figured this was the appropriate spot for a cold weather question:
    I recently bought a Crossrip 3 with a full 105 groupo. This last week I have experienced some weird hydraulic brake issues. While on my ride (1hr ride), my lever actuation is normal upon first compression. But once I engage the brakes once again, the next time I feather the brakes, I have very very minimal lever pull in order to engage the brakes. This pattern happens each and every stop I experience on my way home. Both front and rear. I am using Shiamno.
    This has happened only in this past week and a half in these frigid NH temps.

    Am I experiencing the cold weather affecting the Shimano mineral oil at such cold weather?
    If so, what is causing this intermittent issue? I have not bled these brakes since I bought the bike 4mths ago, but have not had a reason to do so.
    I have had Shimano Saint brakes on my fattie that saw countless winters without issues..


    Sent from my SM-N920V using Tapatalk
    Do you store your bike in a warm location?

    Sounds like cold seal deformation. When you first press the levers, the piston moves outwards, it has no choice. If the seal material is not a proper mix for cold use (many aren't) and the design does not allow for cold deformation, the seal deforms (as it is designed to do), but does not, or very slowly springs back to it's initial form. The results in the piston not returning to it's proper resting position, instead keeping the pad very close to the rotor. When you release the lever, a negative pressure is created in the line, and the level compensates by releasing fluid from the reservoir into the line. The result of this is instant brake with little lever movement.

    Sitting in a warm location, or a long enough time in the cold typically results in the seals eventually springing back to their proper resting position. Try putting a hair dryer on the pistons immediately following a ride during which this occurs, before bringing the bike inside. If the problem disappears immediately, it's the piston seals.

    If the issue persists, turn the dryer on the lever. If this resolves the issue, the problem is most likely due to a restricted movement of fluid between the line and reservoir. Every time you depress the brake, the "free" movement is the result of fluid moving from the line into the reservoir. The occurs until either a valve is closed or a hole is covered by the piston sweep (design dependent). If fluid movement into the reservoir is blocked or restricted, the line pressure must increase.

    Regarding mineral oil, cheap oils will get sluggish just below 20F, while quality oils (which TEND to have a lower wax content) can perform well down to -20F.

    I have experienced no performance change down to 10F, the coldest temperature I've hit so far. I've got a saint lever/zee on the front (Shimano MO) and an Avid Elixr 1 on the rear (MOTEX DOT 5.1). Neither lever has produced a noticeable change in feel (sweeping pistons until the pads engage) or pressure required to apply the brakes.

    I love cycling in the winter, but hope to never experience riding in -20. Temps below 0 are probably not in my budget.
    I will suffer no butt-hurt fools!

  80. #80
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flamingtaco View Post
    Do you store your bike in a warm location?

    Sounds like cold seal deformation. When you first press the levers, the piston moves outwards, it has no choice. If the seal material is not a proper mix for cold use (many aren't) and the design does not allow for cold deformation, the seal deforms (as it is designed to do), but does not, or very slowly springs back to it's initial form. The results in the piston not returning to it's proper resting position, instead keeping the pad very close to the rotor. When you release the lever, a negative pressure is created in the line, and the level compensates by releasing fluid from the reservoir into the line. The result of this is instant brake with little lever movement.
    Good explanation. But it seems like if the fluid was drawn from the reservoir that it woudn't make it's way back there since there is nothing pushing the pistons back. When my system warms up the brake travel returns to normal. It seems to happen most noticeably below 0F.

  81. #81
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    No bike involved but it's 11 degrees in NYC today. The railroad switches and the train doors were having freezing issues. Took me 3 1/2 hours to get to work. Normally takes an hour and twenty.

    Woulda been better off on my fatty.
    I like turtles

  82. #82
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    I've had terrible luck with Shimano brakes in the cold.

    All have suffered from the symptoms described...

    All of my XTR 988 calipers leaked mineral oil below 25 degrees, and would visibly yellow the snow around the pads. When Shimano was contacted, they said they weren't designed for those temps so I would have to deal with it. Twenty....five....degrees...

  83. #83
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    Now my butt is wet, rode the fatbike back and forth to work and thawing occurred between the 2 rides.

    Sent from my E6810 using Tapatalk

  84. #84
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    Quote Originally Posted by brentos View Post
    I've had terrible luck with Shimano brakes in the cold.

    All have suffered from the symptoms described...

    All of my XTR 988 calipers leaked mineral oil below 25 degrees, and would visibly yellow the snow around the pads. When Shimano was contacted, they said they weren't designed for those temps so I would have to deal with it. Twenty....five....degrees...
    Don't know about the XTRs but my 2016 Deores are solid down to -15F so far.

  85. #85
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    Quote Originally Posted by Birddog1148 View Post
    Now my butt is wet, rode the fatbike back and forth to work and thawing occurred between the 2 rides.

    Sent from my E6810 using Tapatalk
    I hate having a wet butt.
    I like turtles

  86. #86
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    Looks like work is sending me to Grand Forks byt the end of the month for 1-2 months. Work is supposedly about 2 min drive from the hotel were at, so I was looking at biking this. Though the temps are aabout -10F (-30F wind chill). What kind of layers do you recommend looking at? I was gonna get some thicker wool for base, but not sure where to go for the other layers. Dont think Ive seen temps below 10ish, and that wasnt too bad. But this..........

    Oh and is it still safely bikeable? Anyone from around the area?

  87. #87
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    I'm not from around there but safety will depend on your route. If the temps are that low the roads will be constantly icy since it is too cold for road treatments to work well so studded tires might be good. For those temps I do tall socks, 2 layers on the bottom & 3 layers on top. Hands and feet are the hardest thing to keep warm but with a trip that short it won't be bad. I'd also want a face mask...and a hat. Definitely a hat!

    It will take you longer to dress and undress than it takes your to ride. It almost doesn't seem worth it.

  88. #88
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    i was typing this before I noticed your commute was short, so it may not be as much of an issue, but i'll post anyway. also check up a few posts there are some detailed responses in similar temps.

    those are some low temps! lowest around my parts is about 0F, but that's kind of rare.

    definitely things like wool (merino), goretex, fleece, poly. I have some goretex booties I wear in colder temps, and typically 2 pairs of wool socks. Maybe some type of insulated boot.

    this company has some interesting boots and whatnot, though I haven't tried them since it typically doesn't stay super cold for long.
    https://45nrth.com/

    for gloves I have the pearl izumi barrier wrx, which are pretty warm. you may need more though (bar mits?).

    the easiest way to keep warm, other than having enough layers on your core, is headgear. full face mask + scarf. you could even have a hat over the mask if necessary. They are typically thin and will fit under a helmet.

  89. #89
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    that 45nrth stuff looks good. Thanks for the help

    Theres actually a location that is 1.5miles away, and another thats 17 miles. Not sure how I feel about the longer commute yet though. Thats an hour and a half according to google

  90. #90
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    Kinda warm tomorrow morning (16F). I always seem to have trouble getting the gear right in certain temperature bands. Around 10F wear everything, 25-30F pretty much the same gear anywhere in the range, 40-50F same thing. 12-20F seem to be either cold or hot, 30-40F usually either hot or chilled. It's just weird.

  91. #91
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    Quote Originally Posted by Forster View Post
    Kinda warm tomorrow morning (16F).
    Around these parts thats a freezing morning

  92. #92
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    Quote Originally Posted by kdirk View Post
    that 45nrth stuff looks good. Thanks for the help

    Theres actually a location that is 1.5miles away, and another thats 17 miles. Not sure how I feel about the longer commute yet though. Thats an hour and a half according to google
    45nrth stuff is also some of the most expensive gear out there.

    17 miles! That's a different story at -10F. All other things being equal you will be slower at that temp so it could be 2 hours. What temps are you used to riding in? What kind of a bike are you using? Riding 17 miles at -10F is probably something you want to ease into.

  93. #93
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    Quote Originally Posted by kdirk View Post
    Around these parts thats a freezing morning
    We've had some pretty frosty mornings. As it turned out this morning was closer to 12F. Record for me personally in the last 10 years was -15F ambient. I haven't ridden in temps that low since the late '80s.

  94. #94
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    So...I thought I was gonna wear shorts to work this morning (51F) when I got up, but by the time I was ready to ride it was 33 and raining. I'm as masochistic as any cyclist, but I think getting hypothermia is an activity better saved for after work.

  95. #95
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    I haven't had the Shimano brake issue and my set are much older. That's very bizarre and not a good response from Shimano.
    There is not much choice between rotten apples.

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