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  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    124

    Bolero vs arm warmers - packing for a tour

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    I am beginning to collect some more clothes for my tour in June. I am self supporting solo, first for an overnight, then some 2-5 day later on in the summer. I like sleeveless jerseys but the mornings can be cool. Do you like Boleros or arm warmers? I have arm warmers but don't love them and have the luxury of affording a bolero. How do you like them?

    For a week long tour with opportunites to wash overnight I am planning on 2 sets of riding clothes, rain gear, two set of town/camp clothes and camping gear. I have back packed, so I am used to going light. I just wonder if I am under packing in the riding clothes area. I figure one set on, one set clean (or drying off the back of my panniers!).

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2010
    Posts
    6,449
    I like boleros, but if you are on the bike, you can't take it off without stopping. (Or you shouldn't, anyway).
    So long as the wheels are still turning, life is good.

    Battswebb

    Pinarello Quattro~CAADX~ Zurich Lemond
    Specialized Romin Saddles

    Surly Krampus!

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,102
    Boleros only work under certain conditions, i.e. for me,< 55 or so in the AM, and only with sleeveless jerseys. I find my bolero (a Terry, well made and it fits me) just doesn't do well with short sleeved jerseys, only sleeveless. The ss jerseys kind of bunch up around the shoulders and just look funny with it. So, the only time I really have worn my bolero consistently is when we were in Spain and it was 50 or so in the AM and 80-95 in the afternoon. Mine is the original version, with a thermal inside, but they do have a lighter weight one.
    I would vote for the arm warmers. More versatile. If you pair them with a vest and/or sleeveless base layer, they will work for a wider range of temperatures, and they can be peeled off when it gets warm. If you can find ones that are women specific and come in sizes, they work fine. Otherwise, they do fall down.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
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    2011 Guru Praemio
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  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Looking at all the love there that's sleeping
    Posts
    4,172
    I prefer a bolero for its versitility. Simply, I find arm warmers never stay up if you take them off and then have to put them back on for some reason. The bolero, you can take on and off a bunch of times, and they never ride down your arms and bunch up at your wrists. For touring I'd definitely go with a bolero.

    I have some Pearl Izumi boleros with a zip front. Love 'em.
    2007 Seven ID8 - Bontrager InForm
    2003 Klein Palomino - Terry Firefly (?)
    2010 Seven Cafe Racer - Bontrager InForm
    2008 Cervelo P2C - Adamo Prologue Saddle

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Central Indiana
    Posts
    6,132
    Quote Originally Posted by 7rider View Post
    I prefer a bolero for its versitility. Simply, I find arm warmers never stay up if you take them off and then have to put them back on for some reason. The bolero, you can take on and off a bunch of times, and they never ride down your arms and bunch up at your wrists. For touring I'd definitely go with a bolero.

    I have some Pearl Izumi boleros with a zip front. Love 'em.
    Out of curiosity, what brand(s) of arm warmer have you tried? I wear Sugoi warmers and have never had a problem with them not staying put. They're pretty snug.
    Live with intention. Walk to the edge. Listen hard. Practice wellness. Play with abandon. Laugh. Choose with no regret. Continue to learn. Appreciate your friends. Do what you love. Live as if this is all there is.

    --Mary Anne Radmacher

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    Newport, RI
    Posts
    3,834
    Funny you should ask, because I happen to be wearing a bolero right now, and I didn't ride today. I love them even off the bike. I have on a '50s style skirt, and the bolero reminds me of a shrug, so it's kind of modern vintage. Only problem with this outfit is the chain lube on the sleeve. Oh well.

    I wear the Terry light weight one the most. The thermal one is a bit too warm, and the problem Crankin described is probably due to the fuzzy inside. The light one I have is silky.
    '02 Eddy Merckx Fuga, Selle An Atomica
    '85 Eddy Merckx Professional, Selle An Atomica

    '10 Soma Double Cross DC, Selle An Atomica

    Slacker on wheels.

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Feb 2005
    Location
    Concord, MA
    Posts
    13,102
    I have Shebeest arm warmers in an x-small (I have short, skinny arms). They stay up fine. So do the Sheila Moon ones I have.
    The PI unisex ones sucked.
    2015 Trek Silque SSL
    Specialized Oura

    2011 Guru Praemio
    Specialized Oura

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,645
    PI arm warmers fit me fine and don't slide down, not the wool ones nor the fleece ones. And I can pull them back up after I've pushed them down, no problem.

    Just like anything - get them the same shape your arms are and they'll fit you better.

    I can't imagine a bolero snug enough not to flap, that would fit over a short sleeved jersey, and I don't wear sleeveless.
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Jul 2006
    Location
    Looking at all the love there that's sleeping
    Posts
    4,172
    Quote Originally Posted by indysteel View Post
    Out of curiosity, what brand(s) of arm warmer have you tried? I wear Sugoi warmers and have never had a problem with them not staying put. They're pretty snug.
    Biemme. They are fine when I wear them, say on the morning commute. They just don't stay up on the afternoon ride. That's why I prefer the bolero - especially if I knew I wasn't going to be able to wash things every day or would wear the same piece several times.
    2007 Seven ID8 - Bontrager InForm
    2003 Klein Palomino - Terry Firefly (?)
    2010 Seven Cafe Racer - Bontrager InForm
    2008 Cervelo P2C - Adamo Prologue Saddle

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Location
    Middle of good old USA
    Posts
    30
    Neither the arm warmers or the bolero take up much space......... I know, when touring, the idea is to travel as light as possible, but it might be worth it to take both. Wear the bolero with sleeveless tops and the arm warmers with ss tops. You might want to have at least one ss top with you. Gives you one more option, if needed. Will you have both front and rear panniers? Carrying sleeping gear? Cooking gear? It all makes a difference in how much room you have for "extras."

    Personally, I like to take clothing that can be worn while cycling and while off-bike. Wicking fabric, but not necessarily bike jerseys on top. (I do always wear bike shorts, for the comfort, but usually with a skirt over.)

    SR

  11. #11
    Join Date
    Sep 2006
    Location
    Oslo, Norway
    Posts
    4,083
    I have state of the art thermal arm warmers from Assos, and I can't stand them. They stay up and keep me warm and are very versatile and lightweight and all that, but the silicon bands on the inside grip onto sensitive skin all the way up near my armpit. I don't think they're too tight for me, I just don't like the feeling and only wear them when space is very short. I'd love a nice bolero, and I think I'd find it easier to peel off when riding than the arm warmers.
    Winter riding is much less about badassery and much more about bundle-uppery. - malkin

    1995 Kona Cinder Cone commuterFrankenbike/Selle Italia SLR Lady Gel Flow
    2008 white Nakamura Summit Custom mtb/Terry Falcon X
    2000 Schwinn Fastback Comp road bike/Specialized Jett

  12. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2007
    Location
    Uncanny Valley
    Posts
    14,645
    Neither pair of my PI arm warmers has silicone grippers. The fleece pair has very light elastic inside the top seam, and the wool ones are a stretchy knit all by themselves. They stay up fine.

    (My DeSoto arm coolers have silicone grippers, which actually don't irritate my arms the way silicone grippers on shorts irritate my thighs, but the DeSotos are such a weird shape that they don't stay up. Fit, fit, fit.)

    And with arm warmers, you don't have to peel them all the way off. You can just push them down around your wrists and either have them available to pull back up if it cools off again, you start a descent, etc., or take them off safely whenever you break for another reason.
    Speed comes from what you put behind you. - Judi Ketteler

  13. #13
    Join Date
    Mar 2009
    Location
    Michigan
    Posts
    124
    I have wool arm warmers, but they are a little itchy. I am not a wool wimp either! I think for the sake of savings, I have decided to wait on the bolero, though I still want one. I am going to use my clothing budget towards saving from my new bike. I still have to sell the old one first though
    Touring this great country, one State at a time! Michigan Summer 2013.

  14. #14
    Join Date
    Jun 2012
    Location
    Seattle
    Posts
    3
    On our tour this spring (two months, Italy-France-Spain) I was pretty happy with a button up shirt, which could cover my arms for warmth, be worn unbuttoned if it was too warm, and taken off without dealing with the helmet when it was really not needed. And when it was clean, I could wear it as "civilian" clothing.

    I did have occasional thoughts that a bolero might be nice, but having multi-use items was more important to me.

  15. #15
    Join Date
    Jun 2006
    Location
    S. Dak.
    Posts
    490

    bolero

    A bolero soaked in water can cool you down in hot temperatures.

 

 

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