What are you using?
Bonus points for telling me the cheap ones from Sierra Trading Post or where ever will make me a happy man.
My incoming Wabi VSalon jersey thank you.
REI lightweight Merino wool, zip neck. It's a little warmer than a poly of the same weight. Doesn't stink either. I also have some cheap wool crew necks that I got in the hunting section of the Ann Arbor K-Mart 25 years ago, but those are a little too thick unless it's below 20F.
To the OP...couldn't find my wool this morning. Grabbed a Hincapie base layer. Got home...threw it away. Synthetic base layers have their place. Just not on me when my wool is the appropriate garment based upon the temps.
The mountains are calling and I must go.
- John Muir
The name is Guy Fazzio
anything works, though I have found that my 2 Icebreaker ones are not as soft as Smartwool and withstand washing more poorly.
I want a pink Rapha v-neck one but can't bring myself to shell out the $$$.
my name is Matt
I like the Patagonia Wool 4 Base Layer. I wear it as a long sleeve jersey in the fall/spring.
Also craft makes/made a sweet wool baselayer. I wear the shit out of that.
This is great, thanks everyone. Lots of options. Small old sweaters are something to think about, but what I really need are t-shirts. If I wear a ls baselayer w/o a t-shirt under it I wind up colder, or maybe this is an issue with wearing crap synthetic baselayers? But its true with street clothes too.
I/O Merino. The brand was started by a large wool processor in Australia and are the only merino brand that actually owns their own factories to do the grading, cleaning, processing, spinning and knitting. This is a pretty big thing because ultimately those first steps are what determines how soft the wool will be. They only used the best ultra fine merino in their own product as they wanted it to be a showcase of their ability. The yarn is spun with a patented process that uses low torque, this makes for a softer yarn that is more durable. Merino wool is pretty delicate, the most common failure is small holes in the garment. This happens because the yarn has let go in a small section due to being pulled beyond it's stress point. High torque wool is all ready under a greater stress and is more susceptible to this. The second advantage to low torque is it being softer, the ends of the fibre are under less stress in that the little tiny pointed end of the fibre tends to lay flat when spun into yarn at low torque. It's the ends up the fibre sticking out that cause wool to itch, the softer the grade of wool and the better it's spun the softer it will be.
I handle our webstore and any direct consumer feed back. I've lost track of the number of emails and calls I've received from people (90% of them women) that rave about the softness of I/O Merino's wool. The women's sports top and boy briefs we sell are the number one item I get feedback on. Women who say they wouldn't previously wear wool even as a base layer over other undergarments are shocked at how they can wear the I/O undergarments. That to us is the biggest testament to the quality of the product.
For winter riding to wear under a jersey I recommend the LS Crib. It's an open rib knit fabric that does an amazing job of moving moisture and keeping you warm. The rib knit is very delicate but that same openness to the knit it what really helps it work.
A more traditional flat knit version is the LS Crew. It's 160g/m2 nice and light with good stretch.
As a mountain biker I have been wearing the Signature Tee's and LS Tee's for riding tops. Not baggy like some DH freeride jersey, but not skin tight like a regular base layer or regular riding jersey. They pair great with regular baggy riding shorts.
For colder ride here in North Vancouver I add the 3/4 tights under my baggies and my knees stay toasty warm.
Currently there is a 50%-65% off sale. Started on Friday and ends today about 5pm pst when I change the prices back.
This thing. I wish I had one when I was racing cross in December. Very snug fit, even on my scrawny waif body. Amazon.com: Helly Hansen Men's Ice Crew Shirt, Black, X-Small: Clothing
MEC also sells Patagonia's merino wool base layers. Expensive, but I wait for a MEC sale and then buy a couple of them. The mid weight is really well made and lasts a long time.
I have a couple of Rapha merino base layers too, also purchased on sale. After six years of wearing them, they're finally starting to get thin in spots. They're equivalent to the lightest Patagonia merino weight. Long in the torso, so it protects your lower back
Like mainemike, I also use old cashmere sweaters as a base layer. Their softness is unmatched, way softer even than merino. The main downside for me - the cashmere I own is relatively heavy and thick in weight, so it is VERY warm. I use it as a base layer only when it's below freezing, otherwise it's far too warm for me.
Provided you have the scratch, the Outlier short sleeve merino base layer is as soft and well made as it gets: OUTLIER Ultrafine Merino T-Shirt
Icebreaker is nice too. I like the cut of the Rapha but it tends to stink pretty quickly and both of mine got a bit of discoloration fast. They call it "cream" but one of mine is more of a "nasty yellow." I still wear basically four base layers for most of the year, on and off the bike. Wool rocks. I need more v-necks but think Rapha might be the only one?