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Windrider (Stubborn)
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
So I'm finally getting settled at the new job & have begun commuting a couple of days a week (12 miles each way). It's been about 20 years since I've been able to commute & I've really enjoying it. That being said I have a few questions for the experts:

1.) How do you deal with the smelly clothes? We have a shower & a couple of lockers, but there is no ventilation in the lockerroom..so the stuff reeks. I've started packing an extra pair of shorts for the ride home.

2.) What do you do for lunch?

3.) Any recommendations for rear Pannier racks and bags?

Thanks in advance.

Len
 

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midnight melon mounter
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I'm surprised your clothes get so funky. Clean shorts and jersey shouldn't be that bad after just 12 miles. When you wash them, are you pulling them out of the washing machine quickly enough? The mildewy smell from sitting in the washer for a few hours after the cycle will magnify with a little body heat.

I find an under-helmet wicking cap keeps the helmet funk out of my hair. I wouldn't commute to work without one.
 

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Windrider (Stubborn)
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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I exercise...I sweat.......especially as I cool down.

What can I say?

I use a headsweat always.

Len
 

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I hang my shorts in my locker, and take my shirt and base layer to my desk and drape them over a box, so everything has more room to breathe.

For lunch, think flat foods. On Mondays I bring in a package of pitas, 2 packs of meat, 1 of cheese, and a bag of baby carrots. Leave it in the fridge and make samwiches each day. (Generally will leave the office for lunch 1x a week w/ coworkers.)

No idea on panniers- I use the smallest lumbar pack made my Mountainsmith- the advantages of leaving all my work clothes (socks & shorts excepted) and getting them drycleaned right there when needed.
 

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Hermia commutes
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I definitely try to hang or drape my bike clothes in the morning so that they're wearable again in the evening. It's not a problem in the winter, but in the summer even my wimpy little 4 mile commute means soaked clothes by the time I get in. I've never gone so far as to smell them, though. I'm pretty sure I just don't want to know. Try spreading them out as much as you can.

I use the Jandd grocery panniers, and I pack my lunch in an insulated lunch box b/c I have limited fridge access. One grocery pannier fits my clothes, purse, and lunchbox. I've crammed more in in a pinch. But I'm a relatively small female, so you may need a second pannier... I'd definitely keep as much clothing as possible at work. I keep all of my shoes in a file drawer during the winter.
 

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My commute is 14 miles each way and at first I used a medium Timbuk2 messanger bag. It made my back very sweaty and was often too heavy with what I have to carry to be comfortable. I'm now using a rear rack and pannier purchaced from REI which I love. I much prefer the weight to be on the bike now, and not my back.

The rack wasn't any thing special, http://www.rei.com/product/682277 but has served me well so far for my commute and trips to the grocery store, etc. I really wanted one of the Tubus' mentioned above but needed something right away and this rack was on sale.

The pannier I purchased was also from REI, http://www.rei.com/product/748088?c...o9*Panniers Novara Commuter Pannier Single. It's got many seperate pockets for storage and a removeable rain cover which packs into one of the side pockets.

I've had no complaints so far with this set up and the bag has proven fairly water proof (with cover) during a few rainy commutes.

As far as sweaty clothes are concerned, I get the luxury of storing my stuff in an electrical room at work, where I can lay out my clothes to dry and not have to worry about offending smells and such. But I think maybe packing a spare pair of shorts and jersey and putting the sweaty ones in a grocery bag tied up until you got home might work.
 

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Windrider (Stubborn)
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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks all.

Len
 

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Can you hang your clothes anywhere besides the locker room? Mine get hung up on hooks in my office, right next to the bike. If not the office proper, what about a garage, mechanical room, file storage room, etc.?

I pack my normal lunch and it goes in my panniers. We have fridge space here, so no issue with storage.

I'm using the Transit Pro panniers from Performance. They're the right size, good enough for commuting 3-4 days a week, and the price was right. They can be had for ~$60 on sale. If I were touring long distances, I'd want something better, but these are getting the job done for now. My biggest complaint is the retention system. They stay on well enough, but are a PITA to put on and off frequently for shopping trips. I might retrofit them with an Arkel hook kit.
 

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Jannd make great panniers - mine are still in use after 10 years - so far they have survived law school, touring and commuting abuse - they look brand new and are great quality

I did a product review which is on the site somewhere

for most commuting now I use a Carradice Seatpost Bag which is the best commuting compromise
 

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Premium Member
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Drape your clothes over your bike.

Pizza. Delivered.

We like Jandd large fanny packs but their panniers are first rate too (we tour with a set of their Mtn Panniers. You might look at the Jandd commuter briefcase (PM me with your mailing address and I will send you mine).
http://www.jandd.com/detail.asp?PRODUCT_ID=FCBP
 

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Smelly clothes, I put them in a plastic bag, and Febreze them.

I use 3 Nashbar bags and a rack. A small handlebar bag for carrying my food. Large framebag for wallet, phone, tubes, pump. Rack Trunk for clothes for work, and clothes for my ride home.

I learned this the hard way. I carry 1 cotton t-shirt, and 1 athletic shirt to wear for my ride home. Cotton T-shirts get wet, but they don't stink, so I wear them after I showered. I used to wear my athletic shirts that wick sweat after I showered, but they stink after they get wet. On humid days, I'm still sweating for at least 1 hour after I showered. I change out of the cotton shirt after I completely cool down if needed.
 

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Banned
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Wool Jersey- keeps the stink away.

Frozen lunches- Kashi, healthy choice, etc- small, easy to pack reasonably tasty. OR, I tag along with my co-workers when they go out to lunch. No one has ever complained that I don't drive.

Panniers- love my Arkels- absolutely bulletproof. Probably overkill for commuting, but rock solid year round- they worked fine all winter and they have yet to leak, despite the fact that they aren't actually waterproof.
 

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Yo no fui.
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1.) How do you deal with the smelly clothes? We have a shower & a couple of lockers, but there is no ventilation in the lockerroom..so the stuff reeks. I've started packing an extra pair of shorts for the ride home.

Ride at an easy pace in the morning. It's never been an issue for me in the cooness of the morning, really. Are you wearng too many clothes such that you get hot? Wool is the greatest invention since mutton.

2.) What do you do for lunch?

I normally eat leftovers I bring in tupperware (in a plastic bag) or buy some food at the grovery store. Sandwiches are great.

3.) Any recommendations for rear Pannier racks and bags?

I have a small North Face lumbar pack I use sometimes and I also use this clip on rack and trunk bag. It's nice and works with all three of my bikes. http://forums.roadbikereview.com/showthread.php?t=126328
 

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banned from the museum
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I usually have something like spaghetti mixed with veggies for lunch, or chicken and rice, or something like that. I prepare it during the weekends, and usually put 5-10 of the cheap little take-along Tupperware-type things in the freezer. I try to keep enough different things that I have a variety. Then I just leave it out when I get to work, and it is usually not quite thawed at lunch time.
 

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passive/aggressive
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I am responding because I haven't seen anything about washing clothes at work yet. I will wash my clothes in a sink with a little soap. They are performance types so they dry before I head home. I avoid washing my shorts unless I can hang them outside but the top gets washed as does my head band (Halo which works great for 11-14 miles in 100+F).

I also lay my clothes out under my desk so they are out of sight.

I eat salads for lunch. Packed in a shallow tupperware. They are light and filling when protein and fats are added.
 

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Premium Member
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Smelly clothes are a great way of keeping people out of your office...(see picture)...:p


Seriously, I wash my shorts out when I arrive in the morning.. I then use the old pro trick of tightly rolling them up in a towel. It removed almost all the water...unroll them and lay them out to dry...They are dry in less than an hour...
 

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No Crybabies
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smelly?

Been doing this 2 years, and I have yet to have any smelly clothes issues. I was starting to think something really bizarre must be going on with you, like a having a rich garlic diet or something, but then I did recall that our humidity runs about 10-25% here (Fresno). Things stay dry or dry out really fast.

I wonder, though, if there are different short or laundry detergents that might make a difference. I just don't think bike clothes should be getting smelly in 12 miles.

Wool has its own issues. Mine tends to smell like "wet dog" when at all moist.

I keep most of my work clothes (lawyer uniform -- shoes, ties, suits, shirts) at work, and have a dry cleaners pick up and deliver. Works fantastic. Just carry underwear and socks back and forth. Therefore, don't need much carrying capacity on the bike, especially since I drive at least once a week. Just use a trunk back on a rack in the winter, as the weather then is much more variable. Almost never rains in summer here.

I keep a small fan under my desk. When I came in with wet gloves some days in winter, I'd dry them out with the fan.
 

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Windrider (Stubborn)
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22,029 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Fixed said:
Been doing this 2 years, and I have yet to have any smelly clothes issues. I was starting to think something really bizarre must be going on with you, like a having a rich garlic diet or something, but then I did recall that our humidity runs about 10-25% here (Fresno). Things stay dry or dry out really fast.

I wonder, though, if there are different short or laundry detergents that might make a difference. I just don't think bike clothes should be getting smelly in 12 miles.

Wool has its own issues. Mine tends to smell like "wet dog" when at all moist.

I keep most of my work clothes (lawyer uniform -- shoes, ties, suits, shirts) at work, and have a dry cleaners pick up and deliver. Works fantastic. Just carry underwear and socks back and forth. Therefore, don't need much carrying capacity on the bike, especially since I drive at least once a week. Just use a trunk back on a rack in the winter, as the weather then is much more variable. Almost never rains in summer here.

I keep a small fan under my desk. When I came in with wet gloves some days in winter, I'd dry them out with the fan.
Yesterday at 7 am it was 82 degrees with 85% humidity....trust me, I was soaked by the time I got to work.

I use some fabreze in with the wash to fight the smell...but, it still gets pretty rank.

Small fan is a great idea. I think I'll also buy one of those small racks for under my desk to hang the stuff up.

Len
 
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