Making padded cycling shorts

Discussion in 'UK and Europe' started by Steph Peters, Aug 13, 2003.

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  1. Steph Peters

    Steph Peters Guest

    I wear womens' padded cycling shorts for my daily bike ride. Womens' shorts have no central seam
    between the legs in the padding, to avoid chafing sensitive areas. They are difficult to find in any
    size, and almost impossible in my current size 24, and are rather expensive. I've got some old
    rather overstretched ones where the cotton lycra fabric of the shorts is wearing out, and one pair
    that have worn into several holes, no longer repairable. However the padding on both pairs is fine
    and could be used for many years more. So I'm contemplating making my own shorts and salvaging the
    padding from the old ones. I can take the better fitting old pair of shorts apart and reckon I can
    make a pattern from them and tweak it to fit.

    Anyone ever made a pair of bike shorts and can offer me some tips? Where can I buy nice matt
    cotton lycra in dark colours, not that bright shiny stuff? I've been told that to make the seams
    properly stretchy they should be overlocked, but I don't have an overlocker and it wouldn't be
    worth buying one just for this. Is it possible to sew such stretchy fabric successfully on an
    ordinary zig-zag machine?

    This thread is cross-posted to uk.rec.cycling and uk.rec.sewing.

    --
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  2. Jim Price

    Jim Price Guest

    Steph Peters wrote:

    > Anyone ever made a pair of bike shorts and can offer me some tips?

    I've never made a pair of bike shorts, but my tip would be to use Google for tips.

    > Is it possible to sew such stretchy fabric successfully on an ordinary zig-zag machine?

    Try putting the following into Google:

    sewing lycra "zig-zag"

    It seems to come up with a few things which may work with your sewing machine. You'll have to tell
    me if any of it makes sense, as my expertise lies mainly in cycling and computers...

    > This thread is cross-posted to uk.rec.cycling and uk.rec.sewing.

    Crumbs, that must be a first. I can't crosspost the reply, as my news server doesn't carry
    uk.rec.sewing!

    --
    Jim Price

    http://www.jimprice.dsl.pipex.com

    Conscientious objection is hard work in an economic war.
     
  3. Marc

    Marc Guest

    Steph Peters <[email protected]> wrote:

    > Where can I buy nice matt cotton lycra in dark colours, not that bright shiny stuff?
    Try a google for "pennine outdoor"

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  4. >I've never made a pair of bike shorts, but my tip would be to use Google for tips.

    Have a look at

    http://www.sable.demon.co.uk/sewing/mine/cycleshorts.html

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  5. On Wed, 13 Aug 2003 23:50:29 +0100, Steph Peters did issue forth:

    > Anyone ever made a pair of bike shorts and can offer me some tips? Where can I buy nice matt
    > cotton lycra in dark colours, not that bright shiny stuff? I've been told that to make the seams
    > properly stretchy they should be overlocked, but I don't have an overlocker and it wouldn't be
    > worth buying one just for this. Is it possible to sew such stretchy fabric successfully on an
    > ordinary zig-zag machine?

    Not sure about obtaining the lycra, but inserts are available here:

    http://www.outdoors-unlimited.org/detail.asp?cat=13&id=56

    Huw
     
  6. Steph Peters

    Steph Peters Guest

    Jim Price <[email protected]> of wrote:

    >Steph Peters wrote:
    >> Is it possible to sew such stretchy fabric successfully on an ordinary zig-zag machine?
    >
    >Try putting the following into Google:
    >
    >sewing lycra "zig-zag"
    >
    >It seems to come up with a few things which may work with your sewing machine. You'll have to tell
    >me if any of it makes sense, as my expertise lies mainly in cycling and computers...
    Found several suggestions that make sense, and a couple I didn't understand. What I need is someone
    who has tried it to tell me what works and what doesn't.

    >> This thread is cross-posted to uk.rec.cycling and uk.rec.sewing.
    >Crumbs, that must be a first. I can't crosspost the reply, as my news server doesn't carry
    >uk.rec.sewing!
    Not surprising, because it doesn't exist. Should have been uk.rec.crafts.sewing - I should have
    remembered that, because when the sewing group was being created I was the one who said it should be
    part of the uk.rec.crafts hierarchy. So I've put an identical post on the sewing group, but not
    cross posted.
    --
    If the world were a logical place, men would ride side-saddle. Rita Mae Brown Steph Peters delete
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  7. Steph Peters

    Steph Peters Guest

    [email protected] (marc) of wrote:

    >Steph Peters <[email protected]> wrote:
    >
    >> Where can I buy nice matt cotton lycra in dark colours, not that bright shiny stuff?
    > Try a google for "pennine outdoor"

    Right now the website only has non-cotton lycra in fluorescent green. I don't think I'd want
    shorts in that colour even if I were a standard size person, and with the size of my backside I
    can't even bring myself to imagine it. I'll drop them an email and see if they can come up with
    anything more suitable.
    --
    If the world were a logical place, men would ride side-saddle. Rita Mae Brown Steph Peters delete
    invalid from [email protected] Tatting, lace & stitching page
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  8. Steph Peters <[email protected]> wrote in message

    > I wear womens' padded cycling shorts for my daily bike ride.
    What you do in private is none of our business! Only joking, I've made quite a few pairs of cycling
    shorts (learning sewing and how sewing machines wors as I went along).

    I disassembled an old pair (4 panel) by unpicking them and copying the separate parts onto some
    brown paper as a pattern, include a bit extra all round each part if you just cut your shorts out
    along the existing seams.

    I just used black lycra from Remnant Kings which was a wee bit thinner than I'd like but conceled my
    modesty ok even when wet (look out for light colours!!!!)

    Use a zig zag stich with around 10 zigs per inch (ie quite close together) and be prepared to use
    the first pair as a test piece with a view to making a better pair next time.

    Sewing in the liner is a bit awkward trying not to get puckers in the finished garment.

    If you fing a source of heavier lycra (Coolmax or summat) please let us know.

    Give it a go, it's not expensive and no one else you know will have personally tailored shorts.

    Good luck, Robert
     
  9. Steph Peters

    Steph Peters Guest

    [email protected] (Robert McDonald) of http://groups.google.com/ wrote:
    >Only joking, I've made quite a few pairs of cycling shorts (learning sewing and how sewing machines
    >wors as I went along).

    >I disassembled an old pair (4 panel) by unpicking them and copying the separate parts onto some
    >brown paper as a pattern, include a bit extra all round each part if you just cut your shorts out
    >along the existing seams.
    >
    >I just used black lycra from Remnant Kings which was a wee bit thinner than I'd like but conceled
    >my modesty ok even when wet (look out for light colours!!!!)
    >
    >Use a zig zag stich with around 10 zigs per inch (ie quite close together) and be prepared to use
    >the first pair as a test piece with a view to making a better pair next time.
    >
    >Sewing in the liner is a bit awkward trying not to get puckers in the finished garment.
    >
    >If you fing a source of heavier lycra (Coolmax or summat) please let us know.
    >
    >Give it a go, it's not expensive and no one else you know will have personally tailored shorts.

    Thanks for the encouragement Robert. I have a bit of an advantage over you when I start, having done
    plenty of dressmaking before, so I know that I can make a pattern that fits.

    Where are Remnant Kings? I suspect nowhere near where I live, as I've never heard of them.

    How wide was your zig-zag stitch? It seems to me that the seams on bike shorts need to be able to
    stretch a lot for them to be comfy to wear, so getting this right will be important.
    --
    An expert is someone who knows some of the worst mistakes that can be made in his subject and how to
    avoid them. Werner Heisenberg Steph Peters delete invalid from [email protected]
    Tatting, lace & stitching page <http://www.sandbenders.demon.co.uk/index.htm
     
  10. Sue

    Sue Guest

    In message <[email protected]>, Steph Peters
    <[email protected]> writes
    >
    >Where are Remnant Kings? I suspect nowhere near where I live, as I've never heard of them.
    >
    www.remnantkings.co.uk - "Scotland's first choice for fabrics..."

    If you find anywhere selling sports weight lycra by mail order could you post the URL?
    --
    Sue ]:(:)
     
  11. Steph Peters

    Steph Peters Guest

    Sue <[email protected]> of wrote:

    >In message <[email protected]>, Steph Peters
    ><[email protected]> writes
    >>
    >>Where are Remnant Kings? I suspect nowhere near where I live, as I've never heard of them.
    >>
    >www.remnantkings.co.uk - "Scotland's first choice for fabrics..."
    >
    >If you find anywhere selling sports weight lycra by mail order could you post the URL?

    From Sally in uk.rec.crafts.sewing:
    >Point North, www.pointnorth.co.uk, sell fabric for activewear, or www.whaleys.co.uk if you don't
    >mind dyeing your fabric (it's easy, I can give you directions). Whaleys are very helpful with email
    >or phone enquiries and happy to send out samples.

    These both have cotton lycra and one even has 2 varieties of Coolmax. Colours mostly black, one
    navy. I've sent off for samples to find out what the weights are, and will try to remember to let
    you know what turns up and what it looks like.
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