Author Topic: Rain clothing?  (Read 14005 times)

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Offline dombrosk

Rain clothing?
« on: May 12, 2004, 12:38:14 am »
I'd be curious to hear what folks have found works best for riding in the rain.  There are some lower priced options out there using a new 3M fabric, then there's the high-price Gore-Tex.  My hiking outfit just seems to channel water down my butt, so I'm looking for tips on biking-specific gear.
Thanks in advance!

Offline Jackalope

Rain clothing?
« Reply #1 on: May 12, 2004, 06:43:43 am »
From my experience, hiking or biking with a rain jacket and no rain pants doesn't really work.  I think you need the combo of both, and that should probably do the trick.

I've never owned any Gortex, usually a simple breathable/ waterproof layer will do.  I have a Marmot Precip and Columbia rain pants I believe.  Keeps me pretty dry

Offline JayH

Rain clothing?
« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2004, 11:50:44 am »
I use a set of Marmot Precips both jacket and pants (not the full zip ones) and they work well.  Some of the more cycling specific rain jackets have a extra length of fabric that covers the butt area so perhaps that is what you're looking for.  I think I've seen some in a Performance catalog before...  

I do sometimes commute with just a rain jacket, days when it's really warm, I would simply sweat up rain pants (goretex or not) so I'll simply just wear the rain jacket.  

Everything kind of needs the other if you want to remain dry. Booties without pants is tough cause water will run down your legs unless you really cinch the booties real tight.  

Offline wanderingwheel

Rain clothing?
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2004, 06:40:17 pm »
My favorite rain wear right now is the inexpensive O2 stuff.  It's light, fits well, and is very breathable.  For cycling, your jacket should have an extended tail as others have mentioned, especially if you do not have a rear fender or rack.  I don't like Goretex, and other waterproof fabrics, for cycling because they are too heavy and not very breathable.

Offline dombrosk

Rain clothing?
« Reply #4 on: May 30, 2004, 10:50:34 pm »
Thanks to the folks who've responded.  The Marmot Precip seems very comfortable, and has a hood which would be useful in camp.  More specialized bike gear like Pearl Izumi offers a butt flap, but never a hood.  
---If you've ridden with Precip or similar items with hoods, is the hood useful while riding, either under or over your helmet, or is it just something you'd put up when off the bike?
---If you've ridden with gear with a butt flap, how handy is that?  Will you ride longer in the rain before putting on rain pants because of it?
!!! Thanks for the generosity of all the riders who share their knowledge on this forum.  For a new-bie it's a fantastic resource!

Offline judyrans

Rain clothing?
« Reply #5 on: June 01, 2004, 04:13:04 am »
---If you've ridden with Precip or similar items with hoods, is the hood useful while riding, either under or over your helmet, or is it just something you'd put up when off the bike?

You can wear the hood either over or under your helmet, but it's very important that the hood doesn't obstruct your vision whereever you wear it. Personally, I've never owned a hood that met that requirement. Also, you tend to get sweaty when wearing a rain coat, and wearing a hood leaves no place for the heat and moisture to leave via your neck. Never the less, a hood is handy when you are off the bike and not wearing your helmet. I use a detachable one and carry it in my raincoat pocket. Or try a "Seattle Sombrero" for off bike use. It also is a good sun hat, keeps your head warm on a cold day, and there's a cord to hold it on when the wind blows. Try a search, or, REI has them. Unfortunately, they aren't cheap.

While I'm riding, I use a helmet cover. Cheap helmet covers come free along with some hotel/motel rooms. It's called a shower cap. Handle gently as they tear easily. Also, they may not fit a large helmet. In addition to cheap shower caps, there are also some plastic bowl covers from the grocery store that may work. Or, you can buy a helmet cover made of GoreTex or similar material. (Adventure Cycling sells some.) Having it made of a material that breathes helps, but the perfect raincoat/helmet cover material has not yet been invented.  Another advantage of a cheap helmet cover is that you can use it to protect your bicycle seat from dew and rain during the night if it's parked outside, or even if you stop riding and run inside during a downpour.

---If you've ridden with gear with a butt flap, how handy is that?  

It definitely helps to have a raincoat/flap long enough to cover your back so that the water drains to the ground rather than down your shorts. If you don't use fenders, or aren't carrying gear on your rear rack, you'll get a nice muddy stripe down your back. If the flap is too long, it may end up between you and your seat causing your seat to get wet. Also, if it's too long it may catch on your saddle as you get up and move forward, a rather embarrasing way to crash.

---Will you ride longer in the rain before putting on rain pants because of it?

Yes, rain pants are a nuisance. They tend to get all sweaty inside. They stick to your legs and make pedaling harder, or they flop in the wind if baggy. However, they can help keep you warm (if not exactly dry) on a cold, wet, windy day.

Offline floyd

Rain clothing?
« Reply #6 on: June 14, 2004, 03:29:39 am »
I've been commuting all winter in the south Puget Sound area and try as little as possible to wear rain gear.  My favorite combination has been a light wind jacket and wool tights and use a rain jacket only when it's really pouring.  The wool tights really surprised me, they're much better than synthetic in all conditions that I have experienced.  If I have to use rain pants I wear them only over bike shorts and try not to work up too much sweat.

Offline JayH

Rain clothing?
« Reply #7 on: June 14, 2004, 12:21:32 pm »
The hiking rain jackets, like the Marmot Precip typically have a guyline in the hood, normally when hiking in the rain, I would pull that tight to form a nice seal, while still maintaining decent peripheral vision. Biking, however, it would not be enough. And it might cover too much in the brim area.  

Usually, I roll the hood up and don't use it in the rain. I would use a cycling cap under my helmet for cases where it's cool outside and raining. Otherwise, in the summer, I wouldn't wear any headgear, just a jacket over my chest and arms. It would be way too hot to wear a hat and helmet for me.   I've never owned a cycling specific rain jacket so I've never rode with a butt flap.  


Offline petehern

Rain clothing?
« Reply #8 on: July 01, 2004, 06:40:41 pm »
Here's a thought: don't bother with rain gear. I'm currently on a cross-country ride, and have gotten rid of my rain clothes. Why? Well, rain just isn't that bad! It's quite refreshing. Rain is all about attitude.

However, this probably only holds in the summer, when getting cold is not a concern.

Offline perpster

Rain clothing?
« Reply #9 on: July 02, 2004, 08:06:04 pm »
The Marmot doesn't appear to have pit zips. Personally, I think they're a must--they allow on the move temperature control. Years, no decades, ago, I had a Performance rain suit w/GoreTex. I loved it. Jacket got destroyed but I still have the pants (& use them when needed). I just bought the Burley rain jacket sold on this site. Very nice! Only thing I miss is the hood!! I called Burley & they feel it's too dangerous to ride with a hood.

Long tail very helpful, as others have stated.

Don't forget shoe covers, especially if you hate that squishy feeling/sound every time you pedal! When jacket overlaps pants, and pants overlap shoe covers, you can stay pretty rain-dry. With pit zips you can stay pretty sweat-dry, too.