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Cold-weather windproof mitts

This topic contains 44 replies, has 20 voices, and was last updated by  StuInMcCandless 6 mos.

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mpm

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Jan 23 2014 at 1:23pm #

Anyone have any suggestions? I’ve tried searching several places without luck. Icebike.org’s suggestion, Vulpine Adaptive, has gone out of business. Too bad, because they looked like exactly what I’m looking for — a windproof shell to go over a normal pair of gloves. I have Kinco insulated leather ski gloves and wool glove liners, so I don’t need any more insulation, but those don’t quite handle wind as well as I’d like below 10 degrees F.

Search “mittens” here to see a good example of what I’d like to find: http://icebike.org/Clothing/Ctestedonice.htm

  • This topic was modified 6 mos, 1 week ago by  mpm.

RustyRed

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Jan 23 2014 at 2:03pm #

I’ve been looking at Marmot gloves and mittens, but find them out of my price range. I don’t NEED to go out in brutal temps, but would love to. I’ll save $300 and workout indoors.

“Marmot Expedition Mitts ($115!!). These mega-mitts are wonderfully warm and made for Mount Everest climbers or South Pole scientists. They are puffy, PrimaLoft-stuffed waterproof mitts that have kept our hands toasty in extreme temps as low as minus-30 F.”

“Marmot does make an even warmer mitt if you don’t mind shelling out big bucks. The company’s 8000 Meter Mitt (see above) costs a sky-high $275 and is designed for high-altitude cold. It is really three mitts in one, including a waterproof shell with a Gore-Tex mitt insert as well as removable 700-fill goose down mittens.”


mpm

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Jan 23 2014 at 2:07pm #

Yeah, that seems to be the issue — all the mitts I’ve seen have their own insulation. I just want a cheap Cordura shell to fit over my gloves.


gg

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Jan 23 2014 at 2:08pm #

So far my Hestra ski gloves have been great. They make a mitten of the same size. You can get them at Fox Chapel Ski, they have them in stock.


Benzo

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Jan 23 2014 at 2:11pm #

They look a lot like the trash messenger bag picker glove with a zipper. They do have a fleece inside (just like the vulpine). You might be able to ask them to do a custom order and have them add a zipper (they are built to order anyway). Stock though, they run $75. They might even be able to build you a set without the liner.

http://trashmessengerbags.com/index.php?cID=285


cowchip

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Jan 23 2014 at 2:52pm #

I use russian military surplus trigger finger mittens
At a llittle over $20 a pair they are awsome warm


dmtroyer

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Jan 23 2014 at 3:40pm #

Ski Gloves generally work pretty well, with some loss of dexterity.


mpm

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Jan 23 2014 at 3:54pm #

dmtroyer wrote:Ski Gloves generally work pretty well, with some loss of dexterity.

I currently own these $20 ski gloves:

But as I mentioned, below 10 degrees F they’re not great in high-wind conditions.

Since I haven’t heard where to buy anything under $50, I’m just going to buy these $20 ski mitts:


Vannevar

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Jan 23 2014 at 3:57pm #

RustyRed wrote:I’ve been looking at Marmot gloves and mittens,

RR, I’ve just recently purchased a pair of Marmot Randonnee gloves. Most expensive gloves I’ve ever held in my hand. Warmest and driest, also. My experience with them over the two Polar Vortices (?) leaves me so glad I bought them.


jonawebb

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Jan 23 2014 at 4:01pm #

I think the problem is you’re looking midwinter. You would normally be able to find lobsterclaw gloves from one of the discount suppliers under $50, I think. I’ve not had problems with them keeping my hands warm enough down to about 15° F.
OK, here you go:

http://www.treefortbikes.com/product/333222390310/192/Swix-Split-Mitt-Lobster.html

In my experience the gloves don’t need to be super warm because you generate heat while biking. This is road biking down to 15. I haven’t found a good solution below that for an hour bike ride.


Drewbacca

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Jan 23 2014 at 4:29pm #

jonawebb wrote:In my experience the gloves don’t need to be super warm because you generate heat while biking.

Too bad for me, I have the world’s worst circulation and my hands/feet are the weakest link… I’m definitely investing in better gloves and shoes before next winter.


mpm

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Jan 23 2014 at 4:44pm #

http://www.treefortbikes.com/product/333222390310/192/Swix-Split-Mitt-Lobster.html

In my experience the gloves don’t need to be super warm because you generate heat while biking. This is road biking down to 15. I haven’t found a good solution below that for an hour bike ride.

Those Swix mitts look good. With most bike clothing, I agree with you that you generate your own heat — my legs and feet are rarely cold because they do most of the work and I flex them constantly while pedaling. However, my hands mostly just sit there and while I don’t have bad circulation, when the wind blows over (and through) the gloves, it can’t keep up with the rate of heat loss. Below 10 degrees seems to be the point where my fingers become numb after 30 minutes or so.


mpm

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Jan 23 2014 at 4:54pm #

Does anyone know of a source for rubber mitts? Just a thin, dish-glove-like mitten would be perfect (and probably dirt cheap).


Mick

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Jan 23 2014 at 5:12pm #

My experience is that I need more thermal protection for my hands while biking than while walking or doing other ourdoor activities.

My hands can get painfully cold while commuting. I also think my guitar playing deteriorates if I ever let my hand get that cold

My experience goes down to about 0 F.

I just use good gloves, with good gloveliners under them and good mittens over.

I looked for just a simple shell mitten (for easy storage when not needed), but I got some with insulation as mpm has said.


reddan

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Jan 23 2014 at 5:13pm #

You might want to look into some pogies. While the off-the-shelf ones seem a bit expensive, I suspect you could whip up something similar out of any windproof fabric, or even use cut-down milk jugs or something similar.


Vannevar

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Jan 23 2014 at 5:16pm #

Major pogie porn here: http://45nrth.com/

I’m sorry.


helen s

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Jan 23 2014 at 8:59pm #

I have a pair of ski gloves, and finally figured out the liners are too think and cut off finger circulation, so now with a thinner liner glove, they are good into the teens.
For single digit temperatures, I take newspaper bags, punch holes for my thumbs, and have a nice cheap pair of green windbreakers.


J Z

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Jan 23 2014 at 9:01pm #

jonawebb wrote:I think the problem is you’re looking midwinter. You would normally be able to find lobsterclaw gloves from one of the discount suppliers under $50, I think. I’ve not had problems with them keeping my hands warm enough down to about 15° F.
OK, here you go:

http://www.treefortbikes.com/product/333222390310/192/Swix-Split-Mitt-Lobster.html

In my experience the gloves don’t need to be super warm because you generate heat while biking. This is road biking down to 15. I haven’t found a good solution below that for an hour bike ride.

Huh…those would’ve come in useful today.


RustyRed

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Jan 23 2014 at 10:32pm #

Vannevar wrote:

RustyRed wrote:I’ve been looking at Marmot gloves and mittens,

Vannevar wrote: RR, I’ve just recently purchased a pair of Marmot Randonnee gloves.

RustyRed wrote:I know, your glove porn got me drooling over gloves that will keep me from getting frost-nip again.

Vannevar wrote:

Most expensive gloves I’ve ever held in my hand. Warmest and driest, also. My experience with them over the two Polar Vortices (?) leaves me so glad I bought them.

RustyRed wrote:

I have the advantage of small hands that will fit into man-sized gloves with woman-sized gloves as a liner. I’m ‘borrowing’ Hubby’s nicest pair of gloves for a ride tomorrow and I’m convinced that a triple layer of protection will do the trick. I’ve been off the bike for over a week and I’m desperate.


RustyRed

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Jan 24 2014 at 10:00am #

reddan wrote:You might want to look into some pogies. While the off-the-shelf ones seem a bit expensive, I suspect you could whip up something similar out of any windproof fabric, or even use cut-down milk jugs or something similar.

Lots of DIY pogie tips here: http://forums.mtbr.com/fat-bikes/diy-pogies-563134.html

I’m loving the pair they made from an old jacket’s sleeves.

I wonder if these $20 mitts made for ATVs would work? In the reviews, there’s a couple of cyclists who use and love them.

http://www.cabelas.com/product/Classic-Accessories8482-QuadGear8482-ATV-Mitts/716428.uts


jonawebb

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Jan 24 2014 at 10:08am #

I rode today and discovered that my lobsterclaw gloves don’t work well enough for 3°, even on a short ride. Quite cold. Next time I’m going to add another layer underneath. I’m done with this not-riding-because-its-too-cold stuff.


reddan

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Jan 24 2014 at 10:30am #

I rode today and discovered that my lobsterclaw gloves don’t work well enough for 3°, even on a short ride. Quite cold. Next time I’m going to add another layer underneath. I’m done with this not-riding-because-its-too-cold stuff.

Jon, have you tried thin wool glove liners, like the SmartWool ones sold at REI? I’ve worn them under my winter gauntlets, under lobster claws, and under regular fingered and fingerless cycling gloves; they seem to add about 10 degrees of comfort in all cases.


J Z

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Jan 24 2014 at 10:41am #

reddan wrote:

jonawebb wrote:
I rode today and discovered that my lobsterclaw gloves don’t work well enough for 3°, even on a short ride. Quite cold. Next time I’m going to add another layer underneath. I’m done with this not-riding-because-its-too-cold stuff.

Jon, have you tried thin wool glove liners, like the SmartWool ones sold at REI? I’ve worn them under my winter gauntlets, under lobster claws, and under regular fingered and fingerless cycling gloves; they seem to add about 10 degrees of comfort in all cases.

Good thing I read this prior to pulling the trigger on those lobster claws. With the SmartWool glove liners, how cold are you good to, out of curiosity?


jonawebb

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Jan 24 2014 at 10:45am #

reddan wrote:Jon, have you tried thin wool glove liners, like the SmartWool ones sold at REI?

Yeah, that’s next.
BTW a runner here recommends hand warmers (the kind made from iron). I’m sort of down on these because I don’t like using stuff up to ride my bike. But they probably work.


Pierce

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Jan 24 2014 at 10:50am #

I think another problem with cycling gear is that they’re trying to cater to the widest possible audience, so a “cold weather” glove is probably designed for people who think riding in 40 degrees F is like an extreme sport, whereas we’re cycling in negative temperatures with our general gloves and being like “grrr!” as I was this morning

My balalaika over the handlebar trick worked somewhat, but was kind of pain too


richierich

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Jan 24 2014 at 10:57am #

“Too bad for me, I have the world’s worst circulation and my hands/feet are the weakest link… ”

Me too, but I learned just this winter that keeping blood flow to the extremities has a lot to do with keeping your core warm, because your body prioritizes warming vital organs and won’t send blood to your toes if your stomach isn’t toasty. I started wearing an extra tank top under my other winter layers and resisting the urge to unzip my coat or ditch a shell mid-ride, and suddenly my fingers and toes are pretty comfortable with wool socks, regular winter shoes, and not-super-expensive REI lobster gloves.

I was quite comfortable like this yesterday, whereas last year my extremities were suffering with temperatures 10 degrees warmer.


reddan

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Jan 24 2014 at 11:08am #

Good thing I read this prior to pulling the trigger on those lobster claws. With the SmartWool glove liners, how cold are you good to, out of curiosity?

Well, this week, I was riding with a pair of Bellwether gauntlets I picked up at Thick in the fall, plus the glove liners…fingers never got chilly, even after 45 minutes at 5 degrees or so. I don’t know what the lower limit is on that combo for me.

With the Borealis glove/claw hybrids and the wool liners, I was comfy down to about 10 degrees. IIRC, I rode with them at 6 degrees once, and found that my hands got a bit chilly after 20 minutes or so…never numb, but not comfortable.

When we’re not being thermally violated by a polar vortex, I usually just wear the wool liners and fall-weight full finger gloves, at least down to the mid 20s.

If the temps are going to vary a good bit, and not likely to go below 40, i’ll wear the liners and fingerless gloves, so I can peel the liners out if my hands get too warm.


WillB

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Jan 24 2014 at 12:46pm #

J Z wrote:Good thing I read this prior to pulling the trigger on those lobster claws. With the SmartWool glove liners, how cold are you good to, out of curiosity?

I’ve got the Pearl Izumi lobster gloves, and I wear the smartwool liners under them. For me, as long as my hands start out warm, they’re usually good down to about 20 degrees (for a 30 minute commute). Below that I start to get a bit cold. This week I ordered some mitten covers to go over them because they’re just not quite doing the trick in this type of cold.


Pierce

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Jan 24 2014 at 1:18pm #

I also have the problem that I live on top of a hill and commuter through a valley, so whatever warmth I start with (which isn’t much, since where my gloves are (my kitchen) is around 40 degrees) is lost by the time I get to the bottom of the hill and then I have to regain the heat as I ride through Braddock

I have some giro non-lobster gloves and am considering getting some thick fleece or something and making a lobster cover for them


J Z

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Jan 24 2014 at 1:28pm #

reddan wrote:

J Z wrote:
Good thing I read this prior to pulling the trigger on those lobster claws. With the SmartWool glove liners, how cold are you good to, out of curiosity?

Well, this week, I was riding with a pair of Bellwether gauntlets I picked up at Thick in the fall, plus the glove liners…fingers never got chilly, even after 45 minutes at 5 degrees or so. I don’t know what the lower limit is on that combo for me.
With the Borealis glove/claw hybrids and the wool liners, I was comfy down to about 10 degrees. IIRC, I rode with them at 6 degrees once, and found that my hands got a bit chilly after 20 minutes or so…never numb, but not comfortable.
When we’re not being thermally violated by a polar vortex, I usually just wear the wool liners and fall-weight full finger gloves, at least down to the mid 20s.
If the temps are going to vary a good bit, and not likely to go below 40, i’ll wear the liners and fingerless gloves, so I can peel the liners out if my hands get too warm.

Cool, thank you. Alright, got irritated and took a page out of cowchip’s playbook. Picked up a set of wool liners and military surplus trigger mittens (which look like the poor man’s version of lobster claws) for under US$30. We’ll see how this goes, will report back next week. The cold hands/fingers thing is…undesirable.


mpm

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Jan 24 2014 at 1:29pm #

WillB wrote:
I’ve got the Pearl Izumi lobster gloves, and I wear the smartwool liners under them. For me, as long as my hands start out warm, they’re usually good down to about 20 degrees (for a 30 minute commute). Below that I start to get a bit cold. This week I ordered some mitten covers to go over them because they’re just not quite doing the trick in this type of cold.

Where did you order the mitten covers from? That sounds like exactly what I’m looking for.


Drewbacca

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Jan 24 2014 at 1:59pm #

richierich wrote:Me too, but I learned just this winter that keeping blood flow to the extremities has a lot to do with keeping your core warm.

Glad it worked for you, but, I’ve already eliminated the possibility that I wasn’t keeping my core warm enough. I can easily break a sweat in the core due to too many layers and still have ice-cold hands/feet… :( Honestly, I’m uncomfortable when it’s 60 degrees out, nevermind negative wind-chill. I’ll wear layers and a hoodie into the 80′s. I think I’m broken.

jonawebb wrote:I rode today and discovered that my lobsterclaw gloves don’t work well enough for 3°, even on a short ride. Quite cold. Next time I’m going to add another layer underneath. I’m done with this not-riding-because-its-too-cold stuff.

What brand? Also, I’m not sure if I read it here or elsewhere, but those hot-hands things can be stretched by placing them in an air-tight bag when not in use.


WillB

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Jan 24 2014 at 2:21pm #

mpm wrote:Where did you order the mitten covers from? That sounds like exactly what I’m looking for.

REI: http://www.rei.com/product/857997/komperdell-thermo-mittens-2013-closeout

Haven’t gotten them yet, so I don’t know how well they work, but I was having trouble finding mitten shells that weren’t $70.


jonawebb

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Jan 24 2014 at 3:38pm #

Drewbacca wrote:What brand?

Mine are cheap Nashbars, which probably aren’t as good as those Swix ones I referenced earlier. Those look like they extend farther up the arm.


salty

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Jan 24 2014 at 10:48pm #

I think there’s a lot of variation depending on your biology. I don’t break out the PI lobsters until it gets in the 20s or my hands will sweat. In the single digits my thumbs get a bit cold – I thought about putting on the glove liners this week.

I also haven’t zipped the pit zippers on my jacket yet, and I’m still sweaty when I get to work – even though it’s mostly downhill.

I’m basically a human furnace.


Benzo

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Jan 27 2014 at 11:43am #

I dig my waterproof ski gloves with handwarmer pockets. They are a bit bulky, but I can work my shifters fine. They worked fine during the sub-zero commutes. My only wish is a snot wipe on the glove.


J Z

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Jan 27 2014 at 12:03pm #

Military surplus trigger gloves seem warm enough with the wool liners. Only potential issue, for me, is that I have grip shifters on the commuter, so I’m “pinching” the bar between thumb and forefinger and using the three remaining mittened fingers to brake.


cowchip

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Jan 28 2014 at 6:51am #

If you would like to try them let me know ?


J Z

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Jan 28 2014 at 9:33am #

@cowchip, those military surplus trigger gloves/mittens worked well for me today, with the addition of wool liners and a small chemical heater packet slid in there.

I went with the standard multiple layers of socks/plastic bag in cycling shoes, booties over them, plus these things below.

http://www.heatfactory.com/toe-warmer.html

For the 5 or so days a year it might be necessary to do this, seems good enough for now, until I can find something better.


RustyRed

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Jan 28 2014 at 7:11pm #

My cheap ATV pogies arrived today. Looks like it’s going to warm up after tomorrow, so I should try them out!

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