- Sizes: S, M, L, XL (see chart)
Heatwave Merino — Mountain Biking Australia, Jul 10
Ground Effect has gone through a few incarnations of their 'Heatwave Merino' fabric over the past couple of years. To begin with, this summer weight fabric was quite cool indeed but very stretchy and saggy once you chucked a tube and a few gels in the back pockets.
The next generation was more supportive but a little too warm to be considered a warm weather garment. In its latest guise, Ground Effect has blended the merino with polyester; 50% New Zealand merino against your skin with the polyester on the outside (it was previously a merino/nylon blend). While you still can't overload the pockets in the same way as you can with a study full synthetic jersey, the new fabric is a lot more supportive and you can pack a reasonable amount of stuff into the rear pockets - a handy thing if you don't always ride with a pack. As with the earlier incarnations, the Merino fabric remains relatively odour free and remained comfortable in warmer conditions - say up to 25 degrees.
By John Hardwick, Editor of Mountain Bike Australia magazine.
Egg on your Face — Spoke Magazine, Jul 10
Somewhat sensitive to any sartorial criticism, I was relieved when my new Ground Effect purple - errr, I mean eggplant - Submerino top got the nod from most of my macho riding mates, and a unanimous thumbs up from the women in my life.
My Submerino and I have been almost inseparable on recent rides. The revamped Heatwave Merino fabric, with its merino/polyester blend, wicks sweat and regulates my body temperature on those crisp days and cold nights. For these cooler months, it's a must-have.
While primarily intended as a base-layer, it's also a stellar performer by itself or when worn with a light undershirt. If you're an architect or just plain shy then you can always choose the black version.
Submerino — UnderGround, May 10
The Submerino is one of those products that had a name before I had even begun sketching the first designs. Along with the Ristretto, it was added to the Ground Effect range in 2003 and was an instant winner. We'd spent the previous couple of winters developing and testing next-to-skin fabric options. The whole merino phenomena already had a healthy head of steam in the market place and our range lacked any lightweight base layer garments. We trialled 100% merino, polyester, polypropylene and various blends in between. It soon became apparent that for cycling a blend of merino and polyester delivered superior performance. Merino absorbed sufficient sweat to avoid cold, damp skin while the polyester component prevented it from getting overloaded with moisture.
Building on the Submerino's success we cloned it the following year to create the women's Hot Toddy. A couple of years later we fiddled with its DNA to add flat seams and a hood that fits snugly under your helmet.
This winter we have tweaked the fabric structure for improved long-term durability. The polyester outer layer is smoother. The tighter knit delivers better dimensional stability and it's less prone to snagging when doing battle with the undergrowth. New Zealand merino sits against your skin for warmth and comfort. Starting its life as a simple black top seven years ago, the Submerino has spawned a whole range of alternatives ... eleven unisex and women's-specific styles, in five sizes and five colours.
Ground Effect Designer
Submerino — Bike Radar, Dec 09
Although the outer face is polyester to improve durability, you get soft merino wool next to your body here and very comfortable it is too.
We found the sleeves a little loose, but the snug body section keeps the fabric in contact with your skin so it can wick sweat effectively, and the extended back is plenty long enough.
Our thermosensors showed a medium level of warmth while riding, but we didn't get much colder when we stopped - our lowest skin temperature was higher than that of any of the other tops on test. Round neck models are available too, in sleeveless (£32) and short sleeve (£42) versions.
4 out of 5 stars
"Soft top with medium level warmth and merino's natural wicking abilities"
By Mat Brett, Cycling Plus
Submerino — NZ Mountain Biker, Aug 08
Ground Effect's Submerino long sleeve top has been a staple of winter riding for several years now. I've been a fan of merino for a while but this was my first time using Ground Effect's own 'Heatwave' fabric, a combination of merino and polyester. The combination puts the comfort of merino against the skin, while the polyester helps with the moisture transfer and durability.
Worn as an outer layer the polyester has a hardwearing feel, isn't as stretchy as straight merino, and shrugged off brambles without coming unstuck. The long sleeves make it perfect for autumn, winter and spring, and a long three quarter length front zip lets air in if you need it. The Submerino has a snug fit all over, including the arms helping with insulation when worn as a base layer under a jacket or vest. Living up to its reputation, the merino component provided warmth even when wet with sweat and ensured a stink-free ride even after several days use. An advantage of the dual component fibre is that that once washing is necessary, this top dries considerably faster then 100% merino.
Submerino — Cycling Plus (UK), Jun 08
Ground Effect's Submerino is one of a range of merino wool goodies. The Baked Alaska has long been a Cycling Plus favourite, and the Submerino uses the same merino inner, with a harder wearing polyester outer concept - albeit without the wind blocking front panel.
The raglan sleeves fall nicely over the shoulders and the cut is closely fitted without being too clingy, so it works well both as an underlayer, by itself, or even over a jersey.
Sleeves are a good length for leaning over the drops and the back doesn't ride up. The material is soft but can snag a bit. Overall the quality is very good though - after a few months of touring abuse it looks almost new.
The Submerino is good value, especially as it's made in New Zealand. Plus a new shipping system ensures you don't get stung with any surprise tax charges either.
Verdict: A well priced merino layer with a great cycling cut; 8/10.
Submerino — What Mountain Bike (UK), Dec 07
Super fine, super warm and stink free merino wool blended with a hard-wearing outer face makes this another versatile top from the no-nonsense New Zealand firm. Ideal as a base layer or an Autumn/Spring jersey, this may end up being the most popular item in your wardrobe.
Submerino — UnderGround, Jun 06
I think the Submerino is one of those products that had a name before I had even sketched the first designs. We figured the play on its fabric and intended use as an under layer were too compelling. Along with the Ristretto, it was added to the Ground Effect range in 2003 and was an instant winner.
We'd spent the previous couple of winters developing and testing next-to-skin fabric options. The whole merino phenomena already had a healthy head of steam in the market place and our range lacked any lightweight base layer garments. We trialed 100% merino, polyester, poly-pro and various blends in between. It soon became apparent that for cycling a blend of merino and polyester delivered superior performance. Merino absorbed sufficient sweat to avoid cold, damp skin while the polyester component prevented it from getting overloaded with sweat. We fiddled with the mix before settling on Heatwave - a bi-component knit with 62% merino against your skin and 38% polyester outer.
Starting its life as a simple black top, the Submerino got the full makeover this season... three colour choices, a contrasting underarm gusset and the addition of an XS size option. Nice tweaks to an old friend.
Ground Effect Product Designer.
Submerino — NZ Mountain Biker, Aug 06
Ground Effect's Submerino combines the thermal benefits of merino wool and the durability of polyester to create a base layer top that should see gaudily-coloured polyprops well and truly banished to last millennium. The longer 'whaletail' back, slightly raised collar and body hugging fit contribute to excellent on-the-bike comfort.
It's seen use as abase layer in multiple layered riding in the South Island, while in the milder North it works equally well as the only layer under a waterproof jacket. And if you don't mind the form-fit look, the new colour combinations are much more stylish than a polyprop to don as your only layer. If you're not familiar with with the properties of merino wool you need to get acquainted soon - no itch, sweat wicking, warm even when wet, and for us heavy sweaters, the most important of all - no stink! We rate the Submerino as a must have for any serious year round mountain biker.
Submerino — What Mountain Bike (UK), Feb 04
The rising popularity of Merino wool is proof of its effectiveness as a base layer fabric. The Submerino is constructed from Heatwave fabric and combines a Merino inner layer with a hard wearing polyester outer. It's a good mix that works well; the Merino wool keeps you warm, dry and comfortable while the stretchy outer layer keeps the top directly against the skin for the best performance. A drop-tail back always keeps you covered in the saddle and the zip at the front improves ventilation. A big cold-weather base-layer , it can also be worn on its own during the milder days in autumn and spring times.
Performance: 9 /10; Value: 8/10
Verdict: Vesitile Merino and synthetic mix. Can be worn as a base or jersey top.
Submerino — What Mountain Bike (UK), Nov 03
Wool was the thermal choice before the advent of synthetic wicking fabrics, thanks to its incredible warmth for weight and the fact that it stays warm even when sopping wet. The Submerino's Heatwave weaves a hardwearing polyester onto the outside of the super soft, stretchy and cosy Merino wool for the best of both worlds. Fit is skin-tight but but is super stretchy, with a low but coochy collar and long sleeves and back. The mid-length zip gives ventilation control, making this a great minimalist long sleeve jersey or a killer base layer - although some may find the sheepy tickle too much. Postage from New Zealand is normally super fast and duty is now deducted automatically.
Performance: 9 /10; Value: 9/10
Verdict: Stretchy, soft and supercosy even when sodden - a real baaa'gain!
What Mountain Bike GOLD Award
A bi-component thermal fabric combining 51% merino wool and 49% polyester. Superfine 18.5 micron New Zealand merino wicks sweat away from your skin while the polyester provides a durable, non-pill outer. Lightweight at just 160gm/m2 and machine washable. Developed by Ground Effect and knitted for us in New Zealand.
- Composition: 51% merino; 49% polyester
Man vs Wild
Merino is unrivalled for comfort as a body layer. It absorbs more moisture than synthetic fibres, mopping up excess sweat rather than letting it settle and cool on your skin. However high-aerobic activities like cycling will often overload ordinary merino. Heatwave's polyester component repels moisture to avoid total saturation of the fabric - so it dries faster to keep you toasty.
Heatwave™ Merino tops are intended to hug your body, ensuring the fabric sits against your skin to wick sweat away - keeping you dry and not chilling out.
Hot 'n' Cold
As a single garment Heatwave™ Merino regulates your temperature through a wide range of conditions. Delivering comfort in all but the hottest climes. Yet it is versatile enough to layer under a WindFoil™, Vortex™ or HydroFoil™ shell in winter.
This chart is a guide only – if you fall in-between sizes, the right size for you will depend on your body shape and how loose or tight you like to wear your clothes. It's no hassle to swap it, if your first choice is not the best fit.
169 - 178 cm
175 - 185 cm
183 - 191 cm
98 - 104 cm
105 - 111 cm
112 - 118 cm
73 - 79 cm
80 - 86 cm
87 - 93 cm
94 - 100 cm
87 - 95 cm
96 - 103 cm
104 - 111 cm
112 - 120 cm
Unisex vs Women's Sizes
Most Ground Effect designs are unisex. The jackets, tights and baggy tops generally fit both men and women equally well. Fitted garments like cycle shorts and some tops are more gender specific so there is generally a women's version in the Outskirts range.
Some Ground Effect designs have an additional 'fit' description to help guide your sizing choice.
Closer fitting tops and jackets with less flap. Typically favoured by disciples of the tarmac, intent on travelling hard and fast. Size up if you need more room.
Also describes the Snug-as-a-Bug fit of Heatwave™ Merino bodywear. These tops are intended to hug your body, ensuring the fabric sits against your skin to wick sweat away — keeping you dry and not chilling out.
Middle-of-the-road comfort for all-purpose riding. Not too tight or too loose — just right for most cyclists in most conditions.
Big and breezy to match your attitude. Lets the breeze blow up your kilt and helps ease the transition from singletrack to café. The default choice when matching with baggy shorts.
Woolly underwear for keeping winter chills at bay. Throw the Submerino on under your Frosty Boy and discover the unrivalled properties of merino wool against your skin to keep you warm, dry and comfy. Dive dive.
> Heatwave™ hi-performance thermal bodywear combines a merino inner layer with a fast-drying polyester outer.
> Seamless underarm gusset.
> Raglan cut with flat seams for enhanced comfort.
> 'Snug-as-a-bug' fit keeps the fabric against your skin to wick sweat away.
> WhaleTail™ longer back for greater cycling warmth.
> Weight: 230 gm.
> Made by us in New Zealand.
Why is Heatwave Merino so comfortable next-to-skin?
> Heatwave combines the comfort, warmth and low-odour properties of merino wool with the durability of polyester. Merino wool absorbs more moisture than synthetic fibres like polyester or polypropylene. This makes it very effective in dealing with excess sweat - it is absorbed into the fabric rather than settling (and cooling) on your skin. The polyester component repels moisture which avoids total saturation of the fabric - helping it to dry faster. The strength of the polyester also maintains the shape of the garment and minimises wear 'n' tear and pilling.
> The Baked Alaska and Popsicle are intended to be used as a stand alone cycle top in cool, as opposed to cold, conditions.
> The Ristretto, Model T, Robin Hood, Submerino and Hot Toddy are all base layers - best worn directly against your skin.
> The Median Strip, Berglar and Flying Nun are riding jerseys, with additional features including three rear pockets and long front zips. For use in both hot and cold climes and versatile enough to wear as an insulation layer in winter.
> Try to avoid cold-water detergents, those with bleach, fabric softener or 'oxygen whitener'. Bleach rots natural fibres like wool. Sodium Percarbonate (the main ingredient in oxygen whitener) can make colours run. Fabric softener can do both.
> Warm machine wash, 40°C.
> Where possible look for a product with a neutral pH level (pH 7) to avoid damaging the wool. As a rule of thumb, product that is easy on the planet is also easy on your body. Select a mild plant-based soap like Ecover, Ecostore, Earthwise or Aware.
> Wash colours separately.
> Most Ground Effect gear dries super-fast so drying on the line or hanging over the bedpost does the trick. Or use a dryer on a warm (not hot) cycle.