Men's Bib Front Cycling Shorts Buying Guide

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Cycling shorts are a form of compression sportswear that add comfort and can improve a cyclist’s speed and stamina. Bib shorts are a variation of this type of cycling garment, and employ a different design to the standard waist-high shorts. There are number of factors buyers should consider before buying a pair of bib shorts, including the material they are manufactured from and the size.

Although there are plenty of cycling stores and specialist websites that stock this form of cycling clothing, it is advised that buyers instead search for bib shorts on eBay. The site has a vast selection of cycling parts and accessories, and buyers will find that items sold on the site are generally at lower prices than those elsewhere. The following guide shall explain the key points buyers should consider before making a search, and how to find a pair of bib shorts on eBay.

Bib Front Cycling Shorts

Cycling shorts are form fitting and use synthetic and natural materials to keep the shorts tight around the body. There are a number of reasons why the shorts are worn this way.

· Wearing cycling shorts increases the level of comfort the cyclist experiences when on the bike, and these shorts will reduce the level of friction between the legs and the saddle. The majority of bib shorts also have a chamois sown into the base of the shorts, which acts as an additional layer of padding.

· Cycling shorts are made from materials that have good sweat wicking properties, and this keeps the cyclist cool even in hot weather.

· Wearing cycling shorts reduces air drag, which in turn improves aerodynamic efficiency allowing the cyclist to achieve maximum speed.

Cycling shorts are available to buy in waist-high and bib styles. Although waist-high shorts are more common, many professional cyclists prefer bib shorts. Some cyclists state the wearing waist-high shorts can become uncomfortable around the stomach, especially on longer cycles. Bib shorts eliminate this problem by using a suspender system to keep the shorts up rather than an elasticated waist. Cyclists who prefer the bib style also say it’s more comfortable as more of the body is kept in place by the bib. Bib shorts are especially popular with female cyclists as they offer more support and can be worn under other garments such as a tee shirt or a cycling jersey.

Bib Front Cycling Short Sizes

It’s important that buyers find a pair of bib shorts that fit properly. Wearing bib shorts that are too tight will increase chaffing and restrict movement, leading to discomfort and occasionally over-perspiring. If the shorts are too loose they will sag and can catch wind, causing air drag and slowing the cyclist down. Buyers should be aware that every manufacturer has their own size guide, so always check what the exact measurements are first before placing a bid. Below are the general sizes for men’s bib cycling shorts.

Sizes

XS

S

M

L

XL

XXL

Waist

28”

30”

32”

34”

36”

38”

Inside Leg

30”

32”

32”

34”

34”

36”

Bib Cycling Short Materials

Bib shorts can be manufactured from a number of synthetic and natural materials. A large majority of bib shorts on sale today are made from more than one material, and the buyer should spend some time thinking which fibres would suit them best.

Lycra

Lycra is one of the most commonly used materials in the manufacturing of sportswear. This synthetic material is tight fitting and is able to retain its fit over a long period of time. Lycra is also very light and has reasonably good sweat wicking properties. Bib shorts made from Lycra are ideal for use on average to warm spring and summer days, and will keep the cyclist cool and comfortable. Lycra is not suitable for use in colder weather, as it does not have very good insulating properties, unless combined with another material such as merino wool. Buyers will find that bib shorts made from this material are available to buy for very reasonable prices.

Polyester

Another synthetic material commonly used to make bib shorts, polyester is thicker than Lycra but possess better sweat wicking properties. Polyester is popular with cyclists because of its strength, and it is easy to care for. Polyester can be machine washed, but buyers are advised to let it dry naturally to avoid shrinkage. Polyester is very comfortable and soft to touch, but because of its synthetic nature buyers with sensitive skin who are considering buying polyester bib shorts should buy shorts that have been blended with another material such as cotton. As with Lycra, bib shorts made from this fibre are available for low prices.

Merino Wool

Merino wool is a natural material used in the manufacturing of many types of cycling clothing including jerseys, caps, shorts and tights. Merino wool is high quality wool with excellent insulating qualities, and is worn by cyclists in winter and autumn. The wool is brushed back on the inside making it fleecy, which in turn traps body heat and reflects it back to the cyclist. This material is also one of the softest to touch and is the number one choice for those with sensitive skin. Merino wool is more expensive than the other materials mentioned on this list, but it is long lasting and quite strong.

Nylon

Nylon is the strongest synthetic material, but this does come at the expense of breathability. Nylon does not have as good sweat wicking properties as polyester, but is warmer which makes it more suited for lower temperatures. Bib shorts made from nylon will last a long time and have good fit retention, but bacteria can build up in the shorts quite quickly and they will start to smell if not washed regularly. Nylon bib shorts should be washed by hand in warm water and left to dry after every cycling session, and shorts made from this fibre will be slightly more expensive than those made from the other synthetic materials.

Bamboo

Bamboo bib shorts have excellent moisture absorption qualities and are perfect to wear when cycling on hot days. This material will keep cyclists cool and is naturally anti-bacterial meaning the shorts stay cleaner for longer and require less washes than other materials. Using bamboo for the manufacturing of cycling clothing is a relatively new practice, but it is becoming increasingly popular with both professional and amateur cyclists. Bib shorts made from this material are generally more expensive than the synthetic materials, but not as costly as merino wool.

Coolmax

This is a synthetic material that was invented by an American fabric manufacturing company called Investa, and is fast becoming the top choice for many cyclists. Coolmax has possibly the best sweat wicking properties out all of the mentioned materials, and it greatly reduces chaffing and irritation. This material is also very strong and will not shrink when washed. Coolmax is anti-bacterial and as with bamboo requires less washing than the other materials.

The Chamois

As mentioned above, the chamois is a layer of extra padding sown into the base of most bib shorts, and adds another layer between the cyclist and the saddle for comfort purposes. The chamois also directs perspiration away from the body and helps keep the cyclist cooler for longer. These tend to be made from thick foam or plastic, and it is recommended that all buyers aim to buy bib shorts that have one.

Conclusion

Bib front cycling shorts are a form of cycling clothing that can greatly benefit a rider. The bib short is a more comfortable alternative to waist-high shorts, and many professionals opt for this option when competing. Buyers should consider the size of the shorts and the materials it has been manufactured from, as this will influence what type of weather the shorts should be worn in. The thinner synthetic materials like Lycra and polyester are suitable for use in warm weather, whereas thicker fibres such as merino wool should be worn in colder temperatures.  

It’s a good idea to shop for bib cycling shorts on eBay as the site has a large selection of sporting goods at lower prices. eBay’s extensive database of users means new items are currently being listed, so if having difficulty finding a specific pair use the Wish List option to alert other users about what is wanted.

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