Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 69
  1. #1
    Flash! ah–ahhh!
    Reputation: SystemShock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    21,692

    Wow... Merino Wool is Awesome. Who Knew?

    Used to be a synthetics guy, even tho' a jersey would stink bad after just one ride in warm weather. But, it was what was available.

    Then I heard some ppl talking wool awhile back, so I got a Nike '100% wool' jersey 'bout a year ago.

    It was nice, but nothing earth-shattering. It felt surprisingly baggy and shapeless, don't know if I just got it a size too large or if these just don't hold up very well. I guess it not being 'next to the skin' contributed to it performing 'good-not-great' for me... it's not quite as warm in cool conditions as I would've liked.

    The 'skin feel' was a little off too. It wasn't coarse or itchy or anything, but it didn't feel as good as synthetics on my skin either, for some reason.

    Then, just recently, I got an Icebreaker 200-gram long-sleeve shirt. Wow.

    Hate to sound like a frickin' commercial, but this thing is awesome. Lightweight, fits right next to the skin, feels good on the skin, and has a nice wide temperature range... layered with even just a regular ol' short-sleeve cotton t-shirt over it, I can go hike with it in total comfort with temps in the upper 40s, yet by itself it isn't too warm exercising in the 70s. And you have to wear it 'bout a half-dozen times before it finally gets smelly enough to bother washing.

    Thinking 'bout getting some of their 320-gram stuff for cold-weather cycling... to deal with the cycling wind chill n' all.

    The weird part? Both the Nike jersey and the Icebreaker shirt are labelled as '100% merino wool'. Someone told me that New Zealand merinos produce better wool than merinos native to other regions (did Nike use those?), but for all I know that's just marketing.

    Whatever, it works.


    edit– My gf is piping in and pointing out that her Smartwool top is awesome too.
    .
    Last edited by SystemShock; 12-05-2009 at 04:24 PM.
    Monkhouse: I want to die like my Dad did, peacefully, in his sleep... not screaming in terror like his passengers.

    SystemShock: About Faux News/the Right-Wing Bubble™ – the first thing a cult does is claim that everyone else is lying to you.

    Kitty:
    ROMNEY LANDSLIDE! Man its going to be fun in PO after Election Day


    Platypius:
    I'd rather fellate a syphilitic goat than own a Cervelo.

    Seamus: Saw Bjork poop onstage back in the day. It blew my teenage mind.


  2. #2
    waterproof*
    Reputation: Creakyknees's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2003
    Posts
    40,591
    um... sheep knew... and us old roadies
    * posted by Creakybot 2013 all rights reserved.
    * not actually waterproof.

  3. #3
    Eddy 53:11
    Reputation: JetSpeed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Posts
    2,430
    I learned that wool REALLY does work well two winters ago. I have three
    pieces of nice wool of varing thicknesses I ride with below 50 degrees.

    With wool as a base and a layer of something on top of that, like an Assos longsleeve
    windstop jersey, I can ride down to 20-25 degrees with just those two layers. Amazing . . . .

    Checkout Craft and Jonesware wool stuff. Fair price, good quality.
    Live vicariously through yourself.

  4. #4
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Posts
    1,076
    Icebreaker, Smartwool and Ibex all make awesome products. Patagonia has also started making some nice wool stuff. Other then the cost it is great.

    Get on Icebreaker's email list, they occasionally throw out some good deals (50% off one item, etc). I've been replacing all by synthetic stuff with wool as I have the money and can find deals.

    One of the things I love about wool is that it doesn't get nearly as a stinky as most synthetics. Great for commuting and touring.

  5. #5
    Flash! ah–ahhh!
    Reputation: SystemShock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    21,692
    The interesting thing about wool to me (aside from the fact that it works really farking well) is that it shoots a hole in the established 'man-made/high-tech/scientific thing always beats the natural thing' mentality.

    Sheep pwn armies of textile scientists. Again, who'da thunk it?
    .
    Monkhouse: I want to die like my Dad did, peacefully, in his sleep... not screaming in terror like his passengers.

    SystemShock: About Faux News/the Right-Wing Bubble™ – the first thing a cult does is claim that everyone else is lying to you.

    Kitty:
    ROMNEY LANDSLIDE! Man its going to be fun in PO after Election Day


    Platypius:
    I'd rather fellate a syphilitic goat than own a Cervelo.

    Seamus: Saw Bjork poop onstage back in the day. It blew my teenage mind.


  6. #6
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: stinkydub's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Posts
    251

    Merino Wool Rocks

    For cycling I have: Smartwool socks (lots), base layer, beanie, glove liners; Ibex knickers (awesome); EWR long sleeve jersey (Belinky); Swobo short sleave jersey. For work and regular wear i have: Smartwool zip sweaters (3 that i wear around and to work), socks (many); Icebreaker zip sweaters (2); Jos A Banks sweaters (5 or 6).
    Some stuff is better than others but I wear them all and continually on the lookout for add'l stuff on sale.

  7. #7
    banned
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Posts
    61
    .........
    Last edited by icebreaker; 12-21-2009 at 03:19 PM.

  8. #8
    Frog Whisperer
    Reputation: Touch0Gray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Posts
    36,598
    really....wool......hard to believe huh.....

    I am a 57 year fan of wool and other natural fibers.....Merino being my absolute favorite of all time


    edit: WOOL is what the synthetics are TRYING to copy!
    Of course I'm sure...that doesn't mean I'm right......

  9. #9
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: zmudshark's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2007
    Posts
    2,651
    Quote Originally Posted by Touch0Gray
    really....wool......hard to believe huh.....

    I am a 57 year fan of wool and other natural fibers.....Merino being my absolute favorite of all time


    edit: WOOL is what the synthetics are TRYING to copy!
    Kinda like steel, eh?

  10. #10
    Frog Whisperer
    Reputation: Touch0Gray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Posts
    36,598
    yep!..............
    Of course I'm sure...that doesn't mean I'm right......

  11. #11
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: ragweed's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Posts
    239
    I discovered Merino wool this fall and have to jump on the bandwagon. Works just like the ads say -- keeps you warm when its cool and then with its incredible wicking properties it really does keep you cool as that morning ride warms up.

  12. #12
    Frog Whisperer
    Reputation: Touch0Gray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Posts
    36,598
    some stuff copies better than others, ever tried to photocopy blue pencil? (called non-photo blue) for a reason
    Of course I'm sure...that doesn't mean I'm right......

  13. #13
    Frog Whisperer
    Reputation: Touch0Gray's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2003
    Posts
    36,598
    for what it's worth, wool is just as warm wet as it is dry!
    Of course I'm sure...that doesn't mean I'm right......

  14. #14
    Flash! ah–ahhh!
    Reputation: SystemShock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    21,692
    Quote Originally Posted by Scott B
    Get on Icebreaker's email list, they occasionally throw out some good deals (50% off one item, etc). I've been replacing all by synthetic stuff with wool as I have the money and can find deals.
    Thanks for the info.
    .
    Monkhouse: I want to die like my Dad did, peacefully, in his sleep... not screaming in terror like his passengers.

    SystemShock: About Faux News/the Right-Wing Bubble™ – the first thing a cult does is claim that everyone else is lying to you.

    Kitty:
    ROMNEY LANDSLIDE! Man its going to be fun in PO after Election Day


    Platypius:
    I'd rather fellate a syphilitic goat than own a Cervelo.

    Seamus: Saw Bjork poop onstage back in the day. It blew my teenage mind.


  15. #15
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Aug 2008
    Posts
    145
    I've been wearing a layer of wool for winter cycling for years; just cant beat it.

    Smartwool also makes a nice lightweight wool Balaclava, that is very warm, and thin and fits under my helmut with very little bulk -- it really cuts the wind burn on cold days.

    Joseph

  16. #16
    Flash! ah–ahhh!
    Reputation: SystemShock's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    21,692
    Quote Originally Posted by ragweed
    I discovered Merino wool this fall and have to jump on the bandwagon. Works just like the ads say -- keeps you warm when its cool and then with its incredible wicking properties it really does keep you cool as that morning ride warms up.
    Yeah, it's really hard to screw up and be uncomfortable with this stuff, 'cuz of the wide temp range, and the wide variety of weights (something like 140-gram to 380-gram, I think).

    You'd have to guess very wrong on what the weather's gonna be like and/or just not be aware of what the different weights can do. Even then, you can be pretty far off, and it's still fine. Pretty close to idiot-proof.
    .
    Last edited by SystemShock; 12-05-2009 at 05:31 PM.
    Monkhouse: I want to die like my Dad did, peacefully, in his sleep... not screaming in terror like his passengers.

    SystemShock: About Faux News/the Right-Wing Bubble™ – the first thing a cult does is claim that everyone else is lying to you.

    Kitty:
    ROMNEY LANDSLIDE! Man its going to be fun in PO after Election Day


    Platypius:
    I'd rather fellate a syphilitic goat than own a Cervelo.

    Seamus: Saw Bjork poop onstage back in the day. It blew my teenage mind.


  17. #17
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Oct 2009
    Posts
    309
    Quote Originally Posted by SystemShock
    Someone told me that New Zealand merinos produce better wool than merinos native to other regions (did Nike use those?), but for all I know that's just marketing.
    It's the area in which the wool is grown that matters - in cooler areas it is easier to produce ultrafine wool (<18 micron). The finest grades in Australia and NZ are sold at special auctions, with Italian suiting manufacturers paying astronomical prices (partly as marketing for their wares).

    The wool you are discussing is not purely a natural fibre - it has been treated with an oxidative process invented by the CSIRO to shrinkproof it.

    Another thing that should be mentioned is that for some people (myself incuded) no amount of treatment makes wool wearable next to the skin. I believe it is the scale on the fibres which causes the reaction but whatever it is we find it unbearably irritating.

    Since I live next to what was once the busiest wool port in the world and about 20 k from the place where the treatment mentioned above was invented this seems a little ironic.
    Last edited by Mark Kelly; 12-05-2009 at 07:36 PM.

  18. #18
    Baltic Scum
    Reputation: seeborough's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Posts
    1,829
    I agree. The only wool item I will wear are DeFeet winter socks. Everything else has to be synthetic.
    Was juckt es die stolze Eiche, wenn sich ein Schwein an ihr kratzt?

  19. #19
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2009
    Posts
    2,746
    It is good stuff. I guess the US millitary has been doing some reseach with it and the scientific mumbo jumbo about how well wool works for clothing is really impressive compared to anything else that's ever been used for clothing.

    Personally for cycling the quality of a shirt as long as it's not cotton doesn't enhance my experience so I ain't going to pay $50-$80 for undershirt.

  20. #20
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2005
    Posts
    4,463
    Quote Originally Posted by SystemShock
    Used to be a synthetics guy, even tho' a jersey would stink bad after just one ride in warm weather. But, it was what was available.

    Then I heard some ppl talking wool awhile back, so I got a Nike '100% wool' jersey 'bout a year ago.

    It was nice, but nothing earth-shattering. It felt surprisingly baggy and shapeless, don't know if I just got it a size too large or if these just don't hold up very well. I guess it not being 'next to the skin' contributed to it performing 'good-not-great' for me... it's not quite as warm in cool conditions as I would've liked.

    The 'skin feel' was a little off too. It wasn't coarse or itchy or anything, but it didn't feel as good as synthetics on my skin either, for some reason.

    Then, just recently, I got an Icebreaker 200-gram long-sleeve shirt. Wow.

    Hate to sound like a frickin' commercial, but this thing is awesome. Lightweight, fits right next to the skin, feels good on the skin, and has a nice wide temperature range... layered with even just a regular ol' short-sleeve cotton t-shirt over it, I can go hike with it in total comfort with temps in the upper 40s, yet by itself it isn't too warm exercising in the 70s. And you have to wear it 'bout a half-dozen times before it finally gets smelly enough to bother washing.

    Thinking 'bout getting some of their 320-gram stuff for cold-weather cycling... to deal with the cycling wind chill n' all.

    The weird part? Both the Nike jersey and the Icebreaker shirt are labelled as '100% merino wool'. Someone told me that New Zealand merinos produce better wool than merinos native to other regions (did Nike use those?), but for all I know that's just marketing.

    Whatever, it works.


    edit– My gf is piping in and pointing out that her Smartwool top is awesome too.
    .
    Funny, I'm wearing a Bodyfit 260 as I type. I like the tall zip collar and the fact that I can wear it for weeks without washing it. The stitching is coming loose on the collar, but I can get that fixed easily. Durability of the Icebreakers may be an issue. I had an identital shirt I wore for two winters in Maine. It got pretty ratty and thin. It might just be from wearing the damn thing all the time.
    Try some of the generic merino wool socks on Ebay. They're every bit as good as the Smartwool stuff, but much cheaper.
    The shirts are best combined with a light wind-proof jacket. The combination of a Mountain Hardware Tech jacket and an Icebreakers shirt is the perfect combination for a very wide range of temperatures.
    Last edited by Jesse D Smith; 12-05-2009 at 09:59 PM.

  21. #21
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    May 2002
    Posts
    1,056
    I thought everybody knew. Well I guess System is the last to know. I feel sorry for the very few who cannot wear wool for whatever reason. Just like down being the best insulator wool is the best fabric for managing temperature and moisture. Welcome to the club System

  22. #22
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation: rmsmith's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Posts
    493
    I really like the feel of rough wool fibers of Filson Mackinaw Wool against my skin. I'm often outdoors inspecting stuff in below freezing weather, and I stay comfortable in two layers, inner 18-oz/yd^2 and outer 24-oz/yd^2 with buttons, no zipper.

    I rode my touring bike today in 24-degree ambient weather albeit somewhat slow at 15-mph wearing the two wool layers along with my Campagnolo balaclava and Pearl Izumi lobster gloves. In really cold weather perspiration condenses on the inside of the typical nylon outer shell, but with wool the perspiration escapes leaving the garment dry.

  23. #23
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2006
    Posts
    72
    I agree wholeheartedly that wool is the wunderfabric. I've used Ibex stuff for a while and just discovered Joneswares. They make great stuff and are very accommodating.

  24. #24
    RoadBikeReview Member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Posts
    392
    I am a HUGE Icebreaker fan and have a wide range of their shirts. The 200 is great as a cycling base layer and the 260 is nice when the temps get lower. I also wear them all winter as undershirts and I just love them.

  25. #25
    Yet Vertically Compliant
    Reputation: tethernaut's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2008
    Posts
    111

    Merino Addiction

    Careful, that IceBreaker stuff is seriously addictive. One hit is all it takes. I tried an IB baselayer for cold weather cycling last fall. Now I have a whole drawer full of that sh!t, and an empty wallet.

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •  

Sea Otter Classic

Hot Deals

Contest


Latest RoadBike Articles


Latest Videos

RoadbikeReview on Facebook