Author Topic: cycling capes: the good, bad and ugly  (Read 2384 times)

Cudzoziemiec

  • Моя планета голубая, я люблю тебя и обнимаю
Riding a bike through a city is like navigating the collective neural pathways of a vast global mind.

Graeme

  • @FatherHilarious
    • Marsden and Slaithwaite Churches
37. Because travel is the finest educational system of all; and cycling the cheapest, easiest, and most educational means of travel - Kuklos' 39 Articles

Cudzoziemiec

  • Моя планета голубая, я люблю тебя и обнимаю
Riding a bike through a city is like navigating the collective neural pathways of a vast global mind.

Re: cycling capes: the good, bad and ugly
« Reply #28 on: 09 April, 2022, 02:14:07 pm »
A late reply from me.  My primary wet weather gear is a cape.  I use the Carradice bright yellow synthetic one (not the waxed cotton one) but I have a People's Poncho too, which is a little lighter and shorter.  I echo most of what tatanab said early on in the thread.  They are much easier to get on and off than separate jacket and leggings & they can be unzipped to give plenty of ventilation when the rain isn't particularly persistent or heavy.  I wear mine for short rides or all day rides.  My legs can get a bit wet from the knee down when there is enough wind to blow the rain across but then again, when the wind does that, it usually dries out the trousers pretty quickly when the rain stops (or I change direction).  I have full mudguards and flaps.  When it's really wet, I use Eager spats and occasionally (not often) a sou'wester & stay very dry all over.  I notice no significant effect due to wind but I'm a slow roller and also notice wind whether wearing the cape or not.

Re: cycling capes: the good, bad and ugly
« Reply #29 on: 22 June, 2022, 05:58:00 pm »
I've just bought the bright yellow Carradice cape to try on very wet long rides. Mister Wobbly OTP sauntered around a very wet Audax last weekend looking dry and snug! I'll need to give some thought to the GPS though... or become a 'proper' navigator and laminate my route sheets!

Re: cycling capes: the good, bad and ugly
« Reply #30 on: 28 June, 2022, 03:22:50 pm »
I used a cape in my younger days because everyone did, probably the Carradice plastic one from memory. Nowadays I just wear my winter cycling jacket which is a thick fleece-lined Gore Windstopper jacket. Although it doesn't claim to be waterproof I find that even in the worst weather the rate at which water penetrates is slow enough that I don't get cold, and when I remove it at a cafe stop I swear that I am dryer than anyone wearing a waterproof jacket. I used this for the Tour of Rheged last October which was both windy and wet pretty much all day and was comfortable, though to be fair the temperatures weren't too bad.

The only issue in cold and wet weather is my feet and hands. A cape doesn't really help your feet but your hands can be a lot more comfortable. I've recently got a pair of gloves made from a neoprene like material which have performed well in cold wet weather, the only downside of these is that they aren't very breathable so your hands end up wet whether it rains or not.

Re: cycling capes: the good, bad and ugly
« Reply #31 on: 28 June, 2022, 04:25:30 pm »
I've just bought the bright yellow Carradice cape to try on very wet long rides. Mister Wobbly OTP sauntered around a very wet Audax last weekend looking dry and snug! I'll need to give some thought to the GPS though... or become a 'proper' navigator and laminate my route sheets!

I recently purchased a Garmin (Edge 530) and ended up putting my cape on whilst using the Garmin to navigate.  I have my Garmin mounted to the side of the stem on the handlebar (wide drop bars) and I have a bracket mounted bar bag.  The cape usually covers the bar bar.  I found that with my thumb in the cape loop, I could lift the cape over the handlebar just enough to check the turning/route and replace, without much ado.

The only issue in cold and wet weather is my feet and hands. A cape doesn't really help your feet but your hands can be a lot more comfortable. I've recently got a pair of gloves made from a neoprene like material which have performed well in cold wet weather, the only downside of these is that they aren't very breathable so your hands end up wet whether it rains or not.
I wholeheartedly agree about the protection a cape affords the hands - I often end up taking my gloves off when using the cape.  I do find that when the rain is not too horizontal, a cape gives my legs and feet very good protection from the rain.  I've got SKS Longboard mudguards too so that helps a lot.  I occasionally wear Eager spats but to be honest, I don't usually bother for summer use unless it's really belting it down before I leave the house.  I wear them more in the winter, whether raining or using the cape or not, when they afford some warmth due to their windproofness, and they also give better protection from all the wet muck off the roads that even my Longboards don't stop.