Advice on Commuting Wool and Panniers

This topic contains 12 replies, has 10 voices, and was last updated by  james.a 2 yrs, 11 mos.

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Aug 21 2013 at 10:05am #

I purchased my first wool cycing jersey recently, and I LOVE it. A few times a week I park in the Waterfront and bike the rest of the way into work. Currently, I’m just wearing an under armor T-shirt, but I feel like it’s still wet from sweat on the way home. I used my new jersey, and it’s perfect, but I prefer to have something that looks more like normal clothing for the commute. So:

Can anyone recommend good wool commuting clothing? A polo shirt style perhaps (and another with long sleeves for cooler days)? Shorts? Again, looking for things that look like regular clothes.

Also, I was trying to find a pannier that can double as a work bag. Enough to carry a laptop and a change of clothes. I don’t commute every day, so I’m not too worried about waterproof. But, I want it to look like a regular work bag.

I’ve done some google searches, and I’ve seen things online, but I’m trying to see if anyone has any actual experience with the products and can recommend some….



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Aug 21 2013 at 10:14am #

I’d suggest looking at Ibex stuff if you want wool in a lot of different forms.


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Aug 21 2013 at 10:51am #

layers –

For outdoor activity in the cold (generally hiking or skiing for me but I see no reason it should not work on a bike), I like a wool undershirt and then I usually have some number of synthetic layers over it followed by a shell.

So I would say to spend money on a good wool base layer and then after that it really doesn’t matter as much.


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Aug 21 2013 at 11:30am #

I second Sara’s suggestion of Ibex. They’ve got quite a bit of stuff that doesn’t look too bikey. As for the pannier, I’ve got an Ortlieb office bag and I love it. It’s waterproof, has room for my work clothes (packed in one of those Eagle Creek clothes folders) plus lunch, pens, paper and whatever else with lots of briefcase style pockets. Plus, if you get one with the newest attachment system, most of the hardware stays on your rack so the bag doesn’t have any hooks or anything sticking out and looks pretty much like a briefcase. They’re expensive, but totally worth it.


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Aug 21 2013 at 12:05pm #

Ortlieb is definitely the way to go… the In-Town or DownTown models are good choices…

At least, until I get around to cutting up the tweed coats I’ve been collecting from Good Will and start making some sweet tweed panniers.

rice rocket

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Aug 21 2013 at 12:08pm #

Get some wool socks too. I’ve switched my whole wardrobe to wool socks, no more stinky shoes.

I have Icebreaker and Ibex jerseys, Icebreaker is a little more “sporty” (more stretch in it and tighter fitting), the Ibex is definitely sturdier though.


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Aug 21 2013 at 1:34pm #

Thanks all! I have already switched to wool socks (and I have the keen clipless sandles to aviod socks all together).

In addtion to the Ibex line, I saw today that Ralpha is having a summer sale, and they have a few wool polo shirts (long and short sleeve) that are clearanced to a price reasonably in line with Ibex. I may check one of those out.

Additionally, I love the looks of the Ortleib Office Bag. I will absolutely be pursuing that.


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Aug 21 2013 at 2:49pm #

Giro New Road.

Good looking stuff, cheaper than Rapha for the most part, and mostly sewn in CA.


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Aug 21 2013 at 3:14pm #

I have this:

Hardware comes with it, which can be annoying at times


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Aug 21 2013 at 7:39pm #

I’ve been looking at this.

Right now, I have a dedicated pannier and just strap a workbag on to the rack. Ugly, but functional.

Someone was selling a Timbuk2 backpack pannier the other day, looks like it got picked up fast.


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Aug 22 2013 at 10:02am #

@Eric – that is EXACTLY what I’m looking for. I see places listed as distributors, but do you know speficifically where I’d be able to order this? I don’t think I can do it from their site.


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Aug 22 2013 at 5:22pm #

Good question.

Pgh isn’t really the town to be in for a selection of fashionable bike clothes…..

I’ll find out for you.


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Aug 23 2013 at 10:44am #

I wear a combination of Rapha and Outlier but I was going to suggest the Giro New Road line. Bug Adam at Thick about it; he’s been looking for a reason to get that stuff in.

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