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Winter Weather Gear

Discussion in 'Motorcycle Talk' started by Gaebrial, Sep 18, 2012.

  1. I am looking to purchase some gear so that I can ride comfortably in the coming winter months, so I am looking for some advice.

    1) Do you prefer heated gear or layers?

    2) If I would like to ride in the cold (and possibly rain knowing the weather), what would you recommend (jacket/pants) on a $700 budget?

    3) What else should I consider?

    I will be riding for pleasure (no commuting, no extended rain-riding) and will need a cut comfortable for riding a sportbike. Thanks!
  2. Best thing I can say is get stuff that fits. The second jacket I bought, I bought with the intentions of specifically using it when it gets colder out but its fit prevented reduced its odds of being used that way. Turns out, if wind can get in you will get cold.

    My original motorcycle jacket that has 3 total layers, and fits relatively snug, ended up being a pretty good jacket for year round riding. Throw some decent winter gloves on and a gator and you're good to go.

    But, I'd have heated gear if I could. I may be able to ride year round...but it's not nearly as comfortable in the winter as it is in the summer.

  3. Texasl

    Texasl Totally Charming Retired Moderator Staff Member

    1.) I prefer to operate in layers, with zip out liners and sweat shirt/fleece when the weather gets really cold.

    2.) If you are looking at casual riding with the possibility of getting caught out in rain my recommendation would be good textiles (A*, Ballistic, Fly) with inexpensive overpants and a waterproof rain jacket. However, if you have a $700 budget, an Aerostitch Roadcrafter suit is not out of the question. That is the going away choice of the hard core long distance riders.

    3.) Take care of your hands. I have yet to stylishly crack the code on keeping the hands fully protected in seriously adverse conditions. The closest I have come is a set of Polar Hands, bar mitts that go over the hand grips, but that most likely will not work for something like a CBR. Your best bet/compromise may be electric gloves.
  4. For $700 you can get a small Honda, with a working heater and windshield wipers. They come with a coffee cup holder, usually.
    Deacon71 likes this.
  5. Texasl

    Texasl Totally Charming Retired Moderator Staff Member

    Yeah, but OP doesn't live in an area where the term "ice fog" is part of the daily lexicon of the weather guesser during 3-4 months of the year.

    (Although I must admit that as I approach 60 :scared I tend to hop into the truck a go the 6 miles to catch a bus to work when the weather drops into the 30's and starts refilling the lakes. :roll:)
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2012
  6. Mic

    Mic Retired

    If you want the best gear for the Pacific Northwest, look at

    Look at the Mercury Jacket if you want a more sport bike oriented jacket cut:

    And Ezeon Pants:

    I've been wearing their gear for several years now, I have the Discovery Jacket and the Challenger Jacket (along with EZeon Pants for both).

    Their jackets and pants allow water to actually penetrate through the cordura layer, as cordura is good at being abrasion resistant, but not so good at keeping water out. A lot of companies try different types of treatments to try and make stuff waterproof, but in the long run, it just breaks down.

    With BMG, there is another fabric under the cordura, that is like goretex. Keeps the water out, keeps you dry.

    The water then just "flows" out the "gutter" along the waist of the jacket. On the pants, same concept, gutter is at the ankle cuff.
  7. Lone Rider

    Lone Rider Streetfighter

    Heated grips and good gloves (1st Gear makes some great ones for heated grips)....,or heated gloves (What I have). Pinlock shield if you wear Shoei is a must.
  8. For heated gear I've found that I loved Tourmaster's Heated Vest but my bike did not. Since it attached to the battery and drew a lot of power even when it wasn't on. Destroyed two rectifiers and a stator because of it. I actually returned it a few months prior to my bike breaking down because the vest stopped working. But when it worked it was awesome!

    Now I run a lithium battery powered vest made my Mobile Warming. Not only is it great on a bike but anything else where it can get cold, hunting, snowboarding, etc. It doesn't get as hot as the Tourmaster but for only being re-chargeable battery operated it's amazing! Also no more hanging power cords! The company also makes gloves but I've never tried them.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2012
  9. Anything that looks like this works super fine, reflects heat off your body. I could be riding in my tshirt in the rain and still be warm.

  10. I vote heated gear over layering. I always felt like Randy from the movie "A Christmas Story" who was all bundled up to the point he couldn't move freely when layering. I like my Gerbings microwire liner and pants. When the cold starts to creep in, I turn on the controler and within seconds I can feel the heat. Since you're in Tacoma, I highly recommend you stop by their facility in Tumwater and try stuff on. Also, I recommend the full liner over the vest style. It will keep your arms warmer longer and make it a simple plug-n-play setup if you decide to use heated gloves.
    Last edited: Sep 19, 2012
  11. Thanks very much for all the suggestions, I really appreciate it. I will definitely look at each of them after work.

    I got sick after riding a few nights ago, so its probably time to step into something a bit warmer.

    Please feel free to add to the thread if you have any further suggestions.

  12. i ride year round and with $700 you will get set up very nicely this is what i have and i am warm down to 0* and dry in super downpoors <----- local to the pnw .. they make the majority of heated gear for all the other brands its just theirs re-branded

    waterproof pants

    jacket you can find it on sale sometimes for $99- $150
  13. Question: Is the draw on the system from heated gear too much for the battery or stator output? I would like to get some heated gear but have always worried it would drain my battery down.
  14. It depends taz. My bike is meant to be a race bike and can't handle much else besides an HID kit. Bikes meant for a lot of external draw like touring bikes for instance can handle the draw. I'd look up reviews about your bike and what other people have done.
  15. no you should be fine ... most bikes have a small alowance for extra wattage.. and the thing is unless its pissing down and 36* you wont have the heater on hi especialy if your wearing the gear i sugested as you will have the liner in and be comphy

    also buy a battery tender and just have the bike hooked up when its not being ridden :)
  16. Most modern bikes wont have issues with newer heated gear so it really depends on your bike specs and that is what you'll have to look at.

    Heated gear all the way. I wore layers for 3 years of commuting in the pnw and finally switched over to heated gear last year. OMG what a difference in comfort!!! The heated gear just flat out rocks. A major perk of heated gear other than staying warm, is that you're not so bulky that it makes movement difficult.

    Your $700 budget is VERY reasonable for heated jacket, troller, gloves (if you wanted electric gloves), coat, pants, and boots. I do not recommend a 3 layer waterproof jacket like one member mentioned above. I used one for 3 years and hated it every time I put it on. It would never dry out completely for the next day and when encountered with too much water, it would start to get damp on the inside which made the cold bite even more. Get a jacket with a good waterproof outer shell and a removeable warm inner layer. I got lucky and snagged a brand new $700 defender jacket for $240 shipped and it is frickin amazing.

    Gloves are going to be a tough one as the hands are the ones that get cold first typically.
  17. You don't say what u consider cold or length of rides, BUT:
    Heated if your bke has enough output.

    Gerbring- pants, jacket, gloves.

    rainsuit as it adds a windproof layer.
    handguards/elephant ears

    see #1 above, and remember the alt has almost 0 output at idle.
  18. Lone Rider

    Lone Rider Streetfighter

    I have winter gear that has the waterproof membrane on the inside. Not so good for all the rain riding I do. My 1st Gear TPG set is not so good in wet wet riding. I stay dry but the outer jacket gets soaked and needs to be hung every wet ride.
    So from my experience something like the 1st Gear Kilamajaro jacket with outer waterproofing is good.

    Since you sound relatively new to cold riding and got sick on these warm-hot days there are some things you probably havent dealt with.
    #1 Cold hands ruin a otherwise fine ride. Get heated stuff. Period
    #2 Cold tires really can ruin your day. Takes awhile for tires to warm in the cold and wet.
    I run sport touring tires which warm quickly. Still it takes a number of miles to warm.
    #3 Foggy visors really suck. Numerous cures out there.
    Can think of many other things but those are my big 3.
  19. I have a Firstgear kilimajaro jacket I would sell you. It is a size large .. Its is very warm. I have only used it half a dozen times. Yours for only $60 obo

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