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  1. #1
    I didn't even own a cat..
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    Merino wool baselayers...cheapskate questions

    Again here I am asking questions about baselayers....I just went to Marshalls and bought two 100% Merino wool sweaters for less than $20. They are nice sweaters but I bought them with the idea to use them as my baselayer. One is a zip up high neck sweater while the second is a V-neck sweater. I compared it to my gf's smartwool baselayer and it seems to be just slightly heavier. Has anyone tried this method? I also got a fleeced lined wicking baselayer zip up high neck athletic jersey for $15. I think that I'm set to get my behind outside riding....once the damn weather quits raining...

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by ncvwnut
    Again here I am asking questions about baselayers....I just went to Marshalls and bought two 100% Merino wool sweaters for less than $20. They are nice sweaters but I bought them with the idea to use them as my baselayer. One is a zip up high neck sweater while the second is a V-neck sweater. I compared it to my gf's smartwool baselayer and it seems to be just slightly heavier. Has anyone tried this method? I also got a fleeced lined wicking baselayer zip up high neck athletic jersey for $15. I think that I'm set to get my behind outside riding....once the damn weather quits raining...
    Well, I hear ya about the precip. It stopped raining here for about an hour this morning. I walked outside and got scared. I thought the world was ending.

    IMO there's absolutely nothing wrong with what you're doing. I wear a lot of non-cycling specific clothing. Wool is a terrific fabric. It'll keep you warm even when it's soaking wet. It also has a pretty wide temperature range at which it's comfy. Not knowing where you live, it's hard to say what you might need or like.

    I tend to run a little hot. When everybody else are wearing lined jackets I'll throw on a flannel shirt. I'm in N. Ohio, and I ride all year. My standard winter bike wear includes a Polartec-like turtleneck that I get from Sahalie. It's called Butterfleece. Nice stuff. It's feather light and medium thickness-nice long sleeves, half zipper front. Unfortunately there's no pocket(s). That'd make it perfect. Over that top I wear an unlined windbreaker cycling jacket that also zips up into a turtleneck. That's ALL I wear on top until the temp gets around 20F. At that point I add a short sleeved wicking t shirt.

    Cycling specific wool tends to be quite pricey. Kudos for getting something reasonable at Marshalls. Another advantage that wool has is that it doesn't hold body odors like other fabrics. I'm not sure what you can do about cleaning it. Dry cleaning is always an option, but that costs a lot. Some wool can just be tossed in the washer. Woolite might work too. You'll have to read the labels & decide for yourself.
    Before you criticize someone walk a mile in their shoes. That way when you criticize them you'll be a mile away & you'll have their shoes.

  3. #3
    I didn't even own a cat..
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    I live in Indy so the weather is so up/down. At least you have a bit more consistent weather up in N. Ohio. I actually bought a women's Dri-fit fleece lined shirt at Marshall's for $17. As for washing the sweaters, I plan to wear a cheap wicking shirt underneath so I don't have to wash them too much. I will probably handwash the sweaters with some woolite or a small amount of detergent. I usually wash delicate stuff in a pillow case to keep it from getting beat up or twisted in the washer. I think my stuff is dry clean or hand wash only. I thought those who read this thread can learn something about finding cheap and new winter riding clothes. I bought a used winter cycling jacket for $50 so I think I'm fine. This buying stuff has been too addictive. I have to stop......

  4. #4
    djg
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    I'd say an inexpensive merino wool sweater from a place like marshalls or costco can make a great winter layer for a fraction of the price of a cycling specific wool garment, although I'd be inclined to wear a base layer underneath it. The only catch really, relative to some wool jerseys/trainers (not all) is that if it's not washable wool, you need to do the hand wash/block dry thing, which is a certain amount of trouble, and if it's your first or second layer, you might need to do that fairly often.

  5. #5
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    My $3 thrift store merinos vs. $85 Rvendell jersey

    When I bought my Rambouillet, I splurged and put a merino jersey on the plastic, too (I don't even WEAR jerseys--I ride in T-shirts most of the time--but there it was, and I was already in spending mode). I love the bike, and the jersey's really nice.
    A couple of months later, though, I was looking in a thrift shop for some furniture for my daughter's apartment and cruised the clothing racks. Among the sweaters were a bunch of those fashionable-in-the-'80s merino sweaters (like polo shirts, only with long sleeves). I bought two of them for $3 each, I think it was, to use on the bike. I'm not a clothing expert, but when I compare them to the jersey, there are only detail differences. In weight, softness, construction, stitching etc. they're nearly identical. The cheap ones have little collars, which I don't like much, but that doesn't hurt the performance, and for three bucks....

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