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Discussion Starter #1
I was RMS looking at Gerbring heated vests but they didn't have my size to try on properly. At $219 they are a bit pricey.
At BK they have heated vests that are regularly $120 on for $100.

Question is has anyone tried the ones at BK? Do they work relatively well?

I don't mind paying for quality but it has to worth the money at the same time.

Suggestions?
 

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Three hour tour guide
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I've had one of the ones from BK for a few years now, the best 100 bux i ever spent. The only thing you'll need to add is an off/on switch on the wiring...
 

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I have a Widder that is probably to $$ for what it is. Having said that, it is the best accessory I have EVER bought.
 

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Ride Solo
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I've had the $100 vest, and it's great. However a Gerbing or Widder (which is what I'm using--with the "arm chaps") can crank out far more heat if needed, and I've needed it in the past. I'd rather have something that can get too hot and have the option of turning it down, than not having enough heat. Also, I'd recommend springing for the full jacket liner if it fits comfortably under the gear you have. Widder and Gerbing seem to have fairly good reputations when it comes to customer service.
 

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Three hour tour guide
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Gotta agree with Brent, having only ever owned the one you are talking about, I have at times felt the need to more heat and heated arms would be a very good thing. If the more expensive one does have heated arms that would make a huge difference..
 
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I bought the cheaper vest at BK (manufacturer - Black Jack??). Cheap, hot and did the job. Mine eventually developed a "hot spot" at one point on the back, it became painful and too hot to wear. They have a one year warranty, but I didn't bother attempting to get it dealt with as I am pretty sure I had it more then a year. (I commute all year so I wear a vest nearly every day for about 6 months).

I bought a Widder to replace it. This version (System 2) is priced in the same range as the Gerbing you are looking at. Nicer construction then my old vest, seems more durable. I got the one with the heated collar - sweet idea! I am not thrilled with their connection point for the wire at the waist, it seems bulky and poorly positioned to me but it is a minor annoyance.

My vote is in support of spending more and getting a Gerbing or Widder. Both reputed to be good products and you can add more heat coverage with their various attachments.

FWIW I also picked up a set of heated grips (by Oxford) at Modern Motorcycles on Commercial Drive. Super addition for cold weather riding. I have ditched my heavy gloves and ride in a medium weight leather glove now. Way better control feel, I can actually find the horn or turnsignal buttons with my thumb. Highly recommended, especially if you ride the mountain/canyon roads as they can get cool in the Spring and Fall.

Rob
 

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Twinfan said:
FWIW I also picked up a set of heated grips (by Oxford) at Modern Motorcycles on Commercial Drive. Super addition for cold weather riding. I have ditched my heavy gloves and ride in a medium weight leather glove now. Way better control feel, I can actually find the horn or turnsignal buttons with my thumb. Highly recommended, especially if you ride the mountain/canyon roads as they can get cool in the Spring and Fall.

Rob
Hate to hijack this thread....but are you happy with the Oxford heated grip kit? I've seen these locally, and the price seems reasonable with the controller provided. Do you find the heat to be equal on both sides? (is there a specific left and right grip?). Thanks.
 

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I've been very happy with my Gerbing stuff. They back it 110% as well, I'm on my second pair of heated gloves after I wore out the lining on the first pair. Just rode down to the shop outside Olympia one day, showed them the gloves, and they grabbed me a new pair without a hassle.

Another time I dropped in and they repositioned a wire that was heating up a particular spot too much. Gratis.

I'll definately buy from them again.
 
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GSP said:
Hate to hijack this thread....but are you happy with the Oxford heated grip kit? I've seen these locally, and the price seems reasonable with the controller provided. Do you find the heat to be equal on both sides? (is there a specific left and right grip?). Thanks.
Wicked good stuff! The heat seems very even on both sides. Probably becuase the heating element is layered inside the rubber/plastic grip and not stuck directly on the metal bar. At first I thought the left was cooler, but then I realized my left hand is "busier". You are constantly opening your left to work the clutch and that lets a bit of air flow under your glove, cooling the glove. When I drone along on the highway and keep a constant grip, the left is exactly the same as the right.

Good quality wiring kit. The variable controller is an absolute necessity, I would not be happy going back to one of the "High-Off-Low" versions now. I would stronly recommedn that you wire these to a relay that is activated by a circuit tied to the ignition and now wire them directly to the battery. Too easy to forget and leave them on or have someone else push the button while your bike is parked. The your battery is pooched.

Rob
 

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The $100 job has done me fine for commuting at +4 '. I've had it for years and think it's a god buy. However, I'd sure like heated arms, and and on/ off switch and or temp control.
 

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Oh, and blue tooth technology so I don't look like a jerk trying to walk away from my bike while still plugged in. :laughing
 

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I have used the $100 one for years. You can buy a heat controller if you don’t want just the on / off. I never felt the need for more heat as I always carry a one piece with in the hard bags, and that plus the vest is killer!

The deal is not how much heat the vest makes makes but how much you can keep inside your suit. So I prefer a lower total wattage and better clothing. I hate worrying about fried alternators and voltage regulators and other wring crap.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Thanks everyone for the info. I ended up with the Gerbing's mainly cuz I liked how the heating elements were arranged. The outside of the vest also doesn't make me look like a lumberjack which is nice.
One thing I notice is how fricken hot the thing gets. I need a heat controller now! When does the spending stop??

Oh and thanks to Xander (Alex) and the always lovely Heather at RMS. Super helpful, informative, and low pressure.
 

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So does anyone have one of these for sale? Or something I can borrow this weekend? :)

Also, what's involved in wiring for it? Will I need to buy more for that or does it all come together?
 

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I've had the full heated jacket for a little while now, and it's the best thing EVER!!! I am an absolute wimp when it comes to the cool weather, and the jacket keeps my entire upper body nice and toasty on the colder days. The only drawback is that because it's a full jacket, there is some restricted movement in the arms, but now that I've got the thing, I wouldn't have it any other way.

J Scott, in terms of wiring the thing, it's really simple - one connection goes to the positive of your bike's battery, and the other connection goes to the negative connection, voila - you're set. I've had DJPaul make a custom connection in the plastics of my VFR so I don't have the wire hanging out from under my seat, but until I had that done, it was very easy to install.
 

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I've had the full heated jacket for a little while now, and it's the best thing EVER!!! I am an absolute wimp when it comes to the cool weather, and the jacket keeps my entire upper body nice and toasty on the colder days. The only drawback is that because it's a full jacket, there is some restricted movement in the arms, but now that I've got the thing, I wouldn't have it any other way.

J Scott, in terms of wiring the thing, it's really simple - one connection goes to the positive of your bike's battery, and the other connection goes to the negative connection, voila - you're set. I've had DJPaul make a custom connection in the plastics of my VFR so I don't have the wire hanging out from under my seat, but until I had that done, it was very easy to install.

love to have a look under the skirts at this custom connector next time :)

my heated vest (with the addition of a lil roller switch, and a couple of receptacle swaps) also the best accessory I ever bought. I got the one from BK and it's more than enough for me :)

Cory
 

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So does anyone have one of these for sale? Or something I can borrow this weekend? :)

Also, what's involved in wiring for it? Will I need to buy more for that or does it all come together?
wouldn't part with my lifesaver heated garmets :laughing however I do have the gerbings and they all interconnect together to use only one plug on the bike; gloves, jacket, pants and socks.

Getting the vest now then pick up the gloves later; those will be the two needed items for cold riding.
 

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I've got both the canadian made vest ($80 in Calgary!) and a Gerbing.
Aha! The Gerbing is a jacket liner, very thin, not bulky, but has heat going down the arms.
If you can pop for the extra dough, go for the heated jacket liner and controller.
Dial in your level of "toasty," and it'll extend your riding season.

It adds to the list of questions I usually get when I roll off the bike in a parking lot. Such as:
"Aren't you cold?"
No, I'm wired for warmth.
"Where y'all from?"
(Where we don't end a sentence in a preposition). Canada.
"Y'all ride that from all the way up there?"
Yes.
"Aren't you cold?"

You get the idea.
 
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