So I just got a job as a messenger this week. I've ridden through Chicago winter before but not 8 hours a day, 5 days a week. I'm going out to yojimbo's today to get some bmx pedals and foot straps for their durability, I've already broken one of my forte pedals and the metal cages are uncomfortable to be riding in all day. With the snow I feel like I'm gonna need new wheelset/tires. Right now I'm riding on some mistral wheels with all condition armadillo tires, the wheels are taking a beating out there and I'm looking for something more durable. I'm on a budget till I start making some money so I'm wondering if anyone has any advice on what's most important for intensive winter riding.
Also I need to gear up for the cold weather and I'm just curious what everyone is wearing to stay dry/warm out there?
Thanks in advance, Chicago's bike community is awesome and this site is proof.
Hey Jeff...Congrats on the job!
Hit-up the bike winter site, there is loads of advice on winter clothing and gear.
Wide-cage pedals are probably not a bad idea for winter riding but there are lots of times when you may need to get a foot down quickly, or even both feet, so I'd think twice about the straps.
-some sort of eye protection-- I use safety glasses as I've never been able to find goggles that work for me
-Layers for upper body-- preferably thin with a little air in between
-I've always found jeans just fine for winter riding without any sort of outer layer-- YMMV
-some sort of face mask
-lobster style gloves if possible
-boots that are well insulated and ideally a little on the roomy side
-2 layers of thin socks
Congratulation...your going to work hard and have fun. Clothing; do anything you can to stay dry. You'll heat-up by riding and moving in/out of buildings. Once you get wet you'll get cold. So focus on staying dry. Gear, invest in clipless pedals. Shimano MTB pedals work well. Wheels, ride with what you have for now. Determine later if you want new wheels built up.