Riding through the winter - gear advice
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Thread: Riding through the winter - gear advice

  1. #1
    Registered User Array
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    Riding through the winter - gear advice

    I've decided to use my bike for my commute this winter. I used to (bi)cycle year round but thats too much of a pain to get cleaned up for the office now. I've ridden 20,000 km this season on my motorcycle and am confident I can handle the <10 km daily commute safely. I ride a CBR600 which means I have little weather protection. My bike is black also so visibility is really important.

    I have a heated vest and sidi boots already that will be suitable, but am looking for a rainsuit and gloves.

    It looks like the Triumph Chevron oversuit is pretty decent for only $100, however I wonder whether I should look for a waterproof/breathable suit instead, and it may also be overkill for such a short ride.

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  3. #2
    Token Aussie Array Taint's Avatar
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    I wear a 2 piece Teknic rain suit that I use whenever it starts coming down. It is comfortable, doesn't leak and I just leave it strapped to the back of my bike. The jacket is bright yellow so visibility is not really an issue.

  4. #3
    All-weather biker. Array
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    Winter Gear

    I have a waterproof textile jacket, waterproof MEC pants that can be rolled up and stowed, winter gloves and waterproof boots.

    I have a higher windshield for the F4, I just installed heated grips (nice) and I have a heated vest for when it's close to zero.

    I tried a one piece suit for a while but it was bulky and some times you only need wet weather gear in the morning or to bring along "just in case."

    Last winter I only missed riding for one week due to snow and ice, the winter before it was almost a month.

  5. #4
    Registered User Array Acuracura's Avatar
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    I wear the aerostitch roadcrafter 1 piece suit. It is great in that you can step in and out of it in a minute. You can wear your normal clothes under and when you get to work just zip it off and it's like you just stepped out of your car. It isn't particularly warm because it is gore-tex and breathes quite well but it is completely waterproof. All you'll need is a pair of waterproof boots and you can leave your work shoes at work or pack them in your packback. The suit can be a bit bulky when you’re not wearing it but the first thing I do when I get to work is hang it up. The roadcrafter is also suitable for wet days in the summer as I mentioned is breathes well and it has pit zips you can open for further venting. A heated vest and grips would make your commute more comfortable.

    Forgot to mention waterproof gloves will keep your hands dry and warm. The alpinestars ones I got are pretty much like snow gloves so you can just get a pair from your local ski shop. Also, a high vis reflective vest will save your life more times than you'll ever know.
    Last edited by Acuracura; 10-31-2010 at 05:13 PM.

  6. #5
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    I used to commute through the year on a GS500 and then an SV650N (use a VFR now). I have some triumph pants and a Rev'it jacket that are waterproof - but pretty much any waterproof textile will work just as well. You'll find dedicated raingear to be superior though as waterproof textiles will still soak up a lot of water, even if you are dry you'll be cold when you put them on for your ride home. I ended up pretty much just using a leather jacket and waterproof overpants plus a thin Triumph raincoat. Worked the best for me, and flexible if the weather changes on you. If you can't spring for waterproof boots you might consider a pair of gore-tex socks, can get them from MEC. Always keep your pant legs outside your boots, and keep your jacket cuffs outside your gloves.

    What made the absolute biggest difference in comfort for me was getting a heated jacket liner with heated sleeves. Much more so than heated grips. Having the heated sleeves keeps the blood that's flowing to your hands warm, and that plus a decent set of gloves will keep you comfortable. Also, make sure your hands are warm when you put on your gloves. If you gear up beside your bike outside (while it's warming like I do), slap and rub your hands before you put your gloves on. Remember to keep your gloves warm when you're not wearing them, don't leave them outside or your hands will never warm up. A balaclava is also a wonderful invention.

    Watch for ice, and a high-viz vest is a really good idea. Think about putting a thermometer on your bike (my VFR has one built in) and if it gets down to 3-4 degrees, be super careful. And remember that cagers don't slow down in the rain, even if you can't see a thing.

  7. #6
    Ridin hard n dirty Array Mr.Sushi ya ha's Avatar
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    Heated grips are amazing! for the $69.00 it was the best money spent after my heated vest...I got the kit that fits under the grips and bought dirt bike grips for the smaller diameter.. The kit adds a bit to the diameter...Then you can run smaller gloves and dont get cramped hands if your small handed..
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  8. #7
    hates you all. Yes, you.. Array bomber's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by drewnabobber View Post
    that plus a decent set of gloves will keep you comfortable. Also, make sure your hands are warm when you put on your gloves. If you gear up beside your bike outside (while it's warming like I do), slap and rub your hands before you put your gloves on. Remember to keep your gloves warm when you're not wearing them, don't leave them outside or your hands will never warm up. A balaclava is also a wonderful invention.
    +1 So many people get good raingear, a heated vest, and forget to pick up some nice gloves. If you're one of those people that your significant other (or lay of the day) hates it when you put your freezing feet anywhere near them in bed, get some awesome gloves, maybe heated grips, and thick socks.

    And if you pass on the balaclava, a neck warmer is also nice.

  9. #8
    Registered User Array
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    +1 for the heated grips!! My hands are always the first thing to get cold and they help a lot! And definitely a neck warmer of some sort.

  10. #9
    Registered User Array 4wheelsLESS's Avatar
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    Here is my rain gear thread. I'm quite sure there are lots of other related threads too.

    The only thing I haven't been able to acquire are waterproof gloves. I pack with me 2 extra pairs that the retailer told me were waterproof. All together 3 pairs of gloves I have with me at all time. I also have a pair of yellow dishwashing gloves just in case.

  11. #10
    Token Angry Asian Array mr.ping's Avatar
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    glove is very important...all weather glove is a must. *more important than heating grip*
    "BTW, How do you say "In the name of Bhudda, get the fuck out of the left lane" in Mandarin and Cantonese? "- OneTrack

  12. #11
    NOOOOOB Array htdub's Avatar
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    I'm just about to pull the trigger in a heated jacket liner.
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  13. #12
    Squid Launcher Array Langosta's Avatar
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    I'm using alpinestars drystar series and so far it's been very warm and comfy. My setup is:

    P1 drystar sport touring jacket
    P1 drystar sport touring pants
    drystar apex gloves
    Sidi b2 boots

  14. #13
    Token Angry Asian Array mr.ping's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by htdub View Post
    I'm just about to pull the trigger in a heated jacket liner.
    i got one...that i dont' really use much..let me know..
    "BTW, How do you say "In the name of Bhudda, get the fuck out of the left lane" in Mandarin and Cantonese? "- OneTrack

  15. #14
    Registered User Array bakwheeltango's Avatar
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    all that gear is great....

    but what are you using for tires?
    you want something that works in the cold and wet, not something that requires warming up for traction.

    I have ridden the last 4 winters and I use a sport touring tire mostly the Michelin Pilot Road 2.
    It's great in the wet.

    cheers

    oh... Burnaby Kawi has a couple touring one piece suits that they are blowing out.
    last I looked there was a medium and an XL.
    Last edited by bakwheeltango; 11-01-2010 at 03:48 PM.
    Z1000 - GSXR1000

  16. #15
    Registered User Array 4wheelsLESS's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bakwheeltango View Post
    all that gear is great....

    but what are you using for tires?
    you want something that works in the cold and wet, not something that requires warming up for traction.

    I have ridden the last 4 winters and I use a sport touring tire mostly the Michelin Pilot Road 2.
    It's great in the wet.

    cheers

    oh... Burnaby Kawi has a couple touring one piece suits that they are blowing out.
    last I looked there was a medium and an XL.
    I just put on Metzler Z6 Roadtecs'. They're supposed to be one of the better ones for wet road.

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