Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby Slapheid on Thu 29/Sep/11 1:53pm

Hello, I couldn’t find any related threads on here...

I have a number of synthetic bike tops which a few years old and now perma-smelly. Currently a 40°C wash barely gets them fresh smelling and they are honking after an hour of use.

Does anyone here have a successful method of cleaning synthetics?
Bleach? Boil wash? White vinegar? Acetic acid? Borax? NICWAX Basewash?


Can’t afford to replace all commuting gear with Merino….
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby Zoom on Thu 29/Sep/11 2:00pm

Soak in nappysan - hang out in the sun to dry. The sun really helps. Polyprop does tend to smell and not much seems to really work
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby Trail on Thu 29/Sep/11 2:02pm

Not all synthetics are created equal. I have bought synthetic tops that ponged after their first use and other tops that are absolutely fine. I would be replacing the pong tops with ones that do not stink so quick. Does not have to be merino, just something that does not stink up as quick.

Other option might be to try a good long soak in Napisan (or the equivilent home brand nappy soak). Stuff in there will kill the bugs and will remove any organic dirt buildup.
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby Trail on Thu 29/Sep/11 2:04pm

Also mentioned here thread-for-general-discussion-t111953-345.html

here is a tip if searching for stuff on vorb. Search in google, with the word "Vorb" included in the search... it often gives you more relevant results than using the search engine on here.
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby Slapheid on Thu 29/Sep/11 2:25pm

Cheers guys, I will give Nappysan a shot.

Oh it should be noted, I sometimes try and get a few days (read: a week) wear out of a top :paranoid:
Last edited by Slapheid on Thu 29/Sep/11 2:46pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby Trail on Thu 29/Sep/11 2:28pm

Oh well in that case, try soaking yourself in napisan overnight...
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby wpp1 on Thu 29/Sep/11 2:51pm

I use polyprop tops for a week before washing. they don't smell. the trick is to hang them up to air dry straight after use. if you just drop them in a heap then they will smell.
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby great uncle bulgaria on Thu 29/Sep/11 4:10pm

Trail wrote:Oh well in that case, try soaking yourself in napisan overnight...

:withstupid: :lol:
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby Simonius_Titius on Thu 29/Sep/11 5:40pm

Once they get established some of the honk bugs are terribly persistent, maybe they are related to the ones that get into towels left wet and rolled up.

Hot wash doesn't seem to bother them.
They need serious soaking in Napisan or chlorine bleach like Janola. Both are bad for your washing machine - soak in a bucket not the machine, use a double rinse. I try to run a nonbleach load straight afterwards or just an empty load.

I don't know if sunlight works by killing the bugs or breaking down their pong products but it helps.

Cross infection is a problem. Clean all your gear and everything that touches it in one go.
Don't use chlorine bleach (Janola etc, sodium hypochlorite) on Goretex-type jackets.
Bleach damages the rubber elastic in Lycra too, I don't know if chlorine is worse for that than oxygen/peroxide (Napisan etc) bleach.
Janola and wire brush for your skin.
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby FLATULENTFRIEND on Thu 29/Sep/11 5:52pm

This is why I love my Kathmandu Polartech LS tops. I’ve had most of them for probably 13 or 14 years and they’re still in excellent condition, don’t smell (even though I keep each one on for days) and warm as :thumbsup:
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby swtchbckr on Thu 29/Sep/11 11:24pm

hell, i'd never get a week out of a polyprop, a day or two at most, just from the scratchy uncomfortableness more than anything, but the pong isnt so good either. but easily get a week with a merino. i've found merinos have taken years to get any armpit pong at all. the damp towel thing tho has struck a couple from too long on a rack in a damp environment and not enough sun, but enough sun has sorted them out eventually.
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby great uncle bulgaria on Fri 30/Sep/11 1:09am

I wore merino pretty much every day for about 8 month tramping climbing and travelling in south america
washed once
never smelt

you can get cheap ones at LWR outlet shop on Montreal st (chch) sometimes
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby jacks0n0 on Fri 30/Sep/11 8:14am

great uncle bulgaria wrote:you can get cheap ones at LWR outlet shop on Montreal st (chch) sometimes


Alas, LWR is munted. It was great for getting cheap thermals for cheap students.
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Re: Smelly Synthetic Baselayers?

Postby swtchbckr on Fri 30/Sep/11 9:00am

Weft Industries, just down the road from where LWR was, on Orbell St, are good for cheap merino stuff. not great range, but reasonably priced... when they have their sales you get to rub shoulders with the blue-rinse set who get all their possum-merino stuff there.


also. Untouched World is pricey as, but their sales are good for quality shit.
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