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Is this stuff awesome or what!

I have used various base layers over the years, mainly polyester or polypropylene. I never wanted to spring for the pricy wool stuff mainly because I am cheap, and didn't think it could be all that much better.

I was wrong.

Just received a thin Smartwool long sleeve base layer as an early Christmas present, and within 1 week I am highly addicted.

29er content: I wear it to commute to work on my 29er.

Why do I like it: it does not stink.

I don't notice much difference in performance or comfort compared the synthetics, but the stink factor is way, way, way down. The shirt I am wearing right now has been through 1.5 trips to work and a 45 minute run.....no smell. My synthetic stuff stinks after just the ride to work.

Anyway, I'm jazzed with the stuff and thought I'd share. Now I want socks, several more shirts, etc...still hate the prices though.
 

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King Pin
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Surly's long sleeve jerseys are made from the miracle fabric. I've been abusing mine for three or four years now, and have probably washed it five times (seriously!) in spite of daily wear in the wintertime.

It DOES NOT stink, ever.

Warm when it's cold/not TOO warm when it's warm, and no itchies.

(Surly Smartwool sockies are nice too!)
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·

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Wool is awesome.

- Comfortable
- Stays warm when wet
- Does not stink, even after commuting in the same outfit for 1 or 2 weeks without washing
- Natural, not made from petroleum, good for environment. etc.

Smartwool and Ibex make really nice stuff but my favorite is Icebreaker: http://www.icebreaker.com/home.aspx

Rivendell also has nice wool:
http://www.rivbike.com/webalog/clothing/

The only downside with quality wool is that the stuff is expensive and addictive
 

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Cold. Blue. Steel.
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I love their socks and have heard great things about their base layers. But, I am a newly addicted fan and advocate of Icebreaker, a New Zealand based company specializing in those amazing Merino sheep.

Here's the link:
http://www.icebreaker.com/

I can tell you that I wear my Skin 260 long sleeve shirt all week long before washing it- and it doesn't even smell (other than like my deoderant) when I drop it in the washer!
Uses include commuting in the cold, yoga, hiking and wearing it under my shirts at work!
:D

OGG
 

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Squalor
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Yep wool is the best. I got hooked on the smartwool socks last year at the Ouachita Challenge. All that walking and sweat and my feet NEVER hurt. My wife wears my socks about 3 days a week now. She's hooked too!

Been wearing Spot wool jerseys for about a year and they are nice in all temps (I've worn mine when the heat index was around 100...I still perfer it to syn.)

My wife asked what I wanted for Christmas...I said anything that used to BAAAAAAA...

I still really like Capilene from Patagonia...but man does that stuff reek...

LP
 

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Que je suis bete!
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wool, the wonder fabric

I forget where the test report was, but in thermal loss, particularly when wet, wool and leather still beat all the man made stuff for layering. You have to watch your wool though. Even some of the modern apparel stuff can itch, particularly shirts and sweaters. I have several smartwool products, lots of socks, a few sweater shirts, and one of the shirts does belie its wool heritage with out a base layer.
 

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giddy up!
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Yep, smartwool is great stuff. I'm a big fan of the 3/4 trainer socks in black.....I must have 10 pairs.

For jerseys I really like Spot. I have the grey long sleeve and it's going on 18 months without a washing. It doesn't stink in the least and just keeps getting more comfy.

B
 

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Padre said:
uhhh....gross!
I second that, seriously Donkey that is just nasty, no smell or not. I have smart wool sock and also Defeet wool socks and I might wear them for a couple of days, but 18 months!?!? Imagine what is living in that jersey by now....
 

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Novem fugit.
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One of the best places to get it is sierratradingpost.com. One word of
caution: ALWAYS line dry your wool, no matter what the tag says. I've
got SmartWool socks with 2 years and hundreds of trail running miles
on 'em. Good gear.
 

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I bought a cycling jersey from Ibex. It seems really thin, but it really keeps me comfortable. Even when it seems really cold out, all I need is a windbreaker over the jersey.

As far as stink goes... I can't say that it works as well for me as others claim. I can use mine about 3 times, before they start to smell. Mind you they don't stink at that point, but I wash them anyways.

I also agree about other synthetic fabrics stinking bad before 1 ride is over.
 

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giddy up!
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OrBikbldr said:
Twice a week for 18 months = about 75-80 weeks or 150-160 times wearing it without a washing....
But....during the summer I probably only wear it a few times total....so we're likely ONLY in the 45-50 range:)

For reference....the tag says that you can go 5-6 rides without a wash...so I've been pushing it a little bit:)!

Cheers!(picture of the offensive article for reference:)
 

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As usual the big guy gets pimped. I clicked on the links above looking for some wool base layer or a wool jersey. Smartwool does have xxl, but Icebreaker doesn't. I also searched some of the big online/catalog bike retailers (Nashbar, Pricepoint, etc.) and found only a few. I did find the Spot jerseys in XXL, but I am concerned with the fit. Donkey, what size is yours and what size do you normally wear in normal T-shirts. I read a post on dirtrag forums (I think) saying the Spot jerseys ran small. Anybody ever try the Dirt Rag wool jerseys?
 
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