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Archive for November 2007

Wintersocks – SealSkinz & Smartwool

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Well no surprise the weather has turned cold in New Hampshire. So last Saturday I got out my Smartwool and SealSkinz socks. They make a nice combo for winter riding even if you wear sandals like I do. The SealSkinz are mildly breathable and very windproof. The Smartwool socks are comfortable and warm even when you foot gets damp.

This is the combo I used was great success when cycling in Labrador and Newfoundland in rain when the temperature was in the low 50’s and the wind was very strong. They kept my feet warm and dry even in sandals.

Unlike the SealSkinz gloves the socks stand up well in the rain and don’t absorb water (I am hoping they haven’t changed the socks). I have several pairs and always take them with me if cold rain or wind is a possibility.

I like the way that Smartwool socks fit and feel. They keep my feet warm in sandals except when it is very windy or raining on cool to cold days. The only downside is that they are fairly expensive and don’t seem to last very long. Life is reasonable but not great for the price.

I usually buy my Smartwools on EBay. I usually get seconds at less than $10 a pair (list is over $18).Other good sources are Campmor and Sierra Trading Post.

For SealSkinz, Karst Sports usually has the best price. The current sale price is $35 for a pair. Expensive I know but these will last a long time and serve you well.

Remember, keeping your hands and feet warm during winter rides will go a long way towards keeping the rides fun. Layer you core so you can let it breathe as you warm up but keep your hands and feet protected if it is windy or getting towards mid-afternoon when temperatures drop.

Written by Roland

November 20, 2007 at 8:11 pm

Posted in Recumbent Clothing

SeakSkinz Waterproof Gloves – Beware

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I have been a fan of SealSkinz waterproof socks since I used them when riding in Newfoundland and Labrador. They really do the job of keeping your feet warm in 40 and 50 degree rain. So when I saw they also have gloves I ordered a pair.

Here is the product description for the gloves:

SealSkinz unique Waterproof MVT (Moisture Vapor Transpiration) gloves are designed to keep your hands dry – completely dry! You need SealSkinz when you hike, camp, fish, work outdoors, bicycle, whenever you need wet weather protection that only SealSkinz can provide.

I expected the gloves to keep my hands dry and warm on cool to cold rain days. Instead they acted like sponges and my hands froze in water logged gloves. I thought this must be a mistake no one could get this so wrong. So I called the manufacturer and they explained there may have been a problem with a batch of gloves and sent me another pair.

I finally tried the second pair out last weekend in 46 degree rain and exactly the same problem. After only a few minutes the gloves became very heavy and felt like wet sponges on my hands. Very quickly my hands became very cold and I had to turn back. These gloves are definitely not waterproof and don’t keep your hands warm. These are the worst performing rain gloves I have ever seen.

I still can’t believe that the company that makes SealSkinz socks could get things so wrong but my experience with my first two pairs has been awful. These gloves definitely aren’t waterproof and don’t keep your hands warm. I am back to wool or poly gloves with rain covers when needed.

I am hoping others can tell me my experience with SealSkinz gloves is a fluke but for now stay away from these gloves.

Written by Roland

November 7, 2007 at 2:11 pm

Posted in Equipment