The Ibex Duo wool cycling short got a great review in “Adventure Cyclist” the roughly bi monthly publication the like named organization (www.adventurecycling.org) out of Missoula, Montana dedicated to cycle touring. Up front disclaimer: Two Wheel Transit carries Ibex products (jerseys, bibs, shorts, gloves, caps, arm warmers and leg warmers), so I am a little biased, but I have been a long time fan of Merino wool. I have a pair of merino wool “long johns” that I bought in the early 80's for back country ski touring that are a bit thread bare and darned in a few places but still usable.
Those have logged a lot of camping, ski and bike trips. Unlike a lot of wool, Ibex uses Merino wool, which has much finer fibers and so does not itch! It takes a little extra care, such as hand washing or gentle cycle and no tumble drying, but has many properties that make it well worth the effort. For one thing it is extremely durable. Another property of wool in general is that it works in many weather conditions. Even when wet, it provides good warmth. I was surprised to find out how well it performs in hot weather when I did a small tour around Lake Pend O'reille in the dog days of last July (95 deg). I suffered no more from the heat on the days I wore a medium weight merino jersey (Ibex Giro) than on the days I wore a typical synthetic jersey. Ibex wool costs a bit more than synthetic jerseys, but in my opinion is well worth it.
Here is the short article from Adventure Cyclist (Feb 2011, p35).
Ibex Duo Short Outside the bike itself and its components, I can’t think of anything more closely associated with cycling than tight-fitting shorts. You can find them in any bike shop and from any manufacturer of cycling gear, but they're not all the same. Like most purchasable items, you get what you pay for. If you're planning an extended bicycle tour, I'd recommend you strongly consider the Duo short from Ibex. I've been using the Duo exclusively since the spring and they're like the Oscar Wilde character Dorian Gray-- they don't appear to age. If Carhartt made cycling shorts, expect they'd be much like the Duo.
According to the Ibex website, they’re constructed of 84% Merino Wool, 11% nylon and 6% spandex, combining for a breathable and super non-smelly combination that Ibex has formulated specifically for its cycling line. The observant will notice that those numbers add up to 101% percent. Yeah, that's how good these shorts are. More specs: four-way stretch micro-fine polyester that's anti-microbial, a multi-dimensional 8 mm, nine panel chamois, and gripper elastic hems, all weighting in at 9.6 ounces. And they're made in the USA. Really, what more could you ask for?
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