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Discussion Starter #1
Several people have asked me what I wear to keep warm when I'm riding in the winter so I thought I'd put together a post and show you.



Starting at the top left, I have a heavy leather riding jacket. Next is a thinsulate liner, a fleece jacket, a leather vest, a heavy fleece under shirt and a cotton turtle neck (keeps my beard from getting caught in the undershirt zipper). Below that I have my leather chaps, Draggin' Jeans (the kevlar in the knees really works well to keep my knees warm), some heavy fleece long johns, Carhartt Arctic socks and my lace up boots. I wear a 3/4 helmet with a full face shield and a fleece liner. The gloves are leather ski gloves with a thinsulate liner on the palms and wool on the backs. This setup is what I wear most of the winter. Most of my winter riding is in the 20-45(F) range. Above that, I remove layers. Below that I'll add a full face balaclava and a heavy wool scarf. When it gets down below 0F I'll add glove warmers to suppliment my heated grips.

This is my own personal choice that I find works well for me and the environment I ride in. Your needs will vary from mine so my best advice is to just keep trying things until you find what works for you. This works best for me.

Happy Trails!

sanoke
 

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sanoke,

Question, do the heated grips keep your whole hand warm or just the palm? Thinking about putting some on my bike. I layer my clothing also but no matter what gloves I use the hands still get cold.
 

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1994 Honda Shadow VT1100C. 1993 Honda VF750C Magna.
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One criticism, John.

The helmet isn't in the fastest clour (matt black). :lol:

Great selection and a great post. We have gales here in the UK at the moment, together with flood warnings. I am a sissy and the Shadow has stayed in the garage. :lol:

Respect

Collector
 

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Ok, from the pictures I remember of you...you are not a big guy...so tell us...

Just how do you move in all those clothes? :lol:

I haven't done a lot of really cold riding lately. When I was doing it, I would layer up too. The basic principle is...keep the wind off of you. Beyond that, your body heat should keep you warm. Except for my hands...that is. That is why the only piece of electric clothing I own are gloves. And they are a life saver, for me.
 

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Thanks for the info San,

I do want to add one thing. Your body is likely much more highly adapted to cold weather than many of us. I do quite a bit of other outdoor activity and read quite a bit on the human body's acclimization process. Repetative exposure to extreme cold or extreme heat will increase your body's ability thermo-regulate. For example, the inuit people can run around with their faces uncovered outdoors in Alaska and only have a red nose while I would likely have frostbite within 30 minutes. For a great explanation of the body's gradual adaptation to extreme tempratures I recomend checking out pages 88-90 of Cody Lundin's 98.6 Degrees: The art of keeping Your Ass Alive. This book also tells you how to make a heck of a survival kit that would fit in a saddlebag.

Anyway, all of this to say that Sanoke is a hard core son of a gun. Many of the rest of us could use the same gear and feel "colder" than he does until we do it enough times for our body to get used to it.
 

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Thanks John!

I really have to improve on my cold weather riding gear. I wear about half the stuff you do in cold weather and there is no need for me to be so cold. ( I think thats where the crazy in crazy canucks comes in :wink: )

Thanks for the post.
 

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Now I know why you ride in the winter, You wouldn't be able to walk with all that gear on :lol:
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Bigguy2x said:
sanoke,

Question, do the heated grips keep your whole hand warm or just the palm? Thinking about putting some on my bike. I layer my clothing also but no matter what gloves I use the hands still get cold.
The grips keep my whole hand warm but I had to find the right gloves to make that happen. The trick is to have a thin lining on the palms to let the heat in and heavy lining on the backs to keep the heat in. I also waterproof the backs of my gloves and that helps to block more of the wind.
Collector said:
The helmet isn't in the fastest clour (matt black).
Yea, next time I take the spray can to the Yamaha, I'll have to fix that. :wink:
Spirit_1100 said:
Just how do you move in all those clothes?
Don't have to, the bike does all the moving for me. The trick is to just never get off. :wink:
Kingham said:
Many of the rest of us could use the same gear and feel "colder" than he does until we do it enough times for our body to get used to it.
You do have a point. In addition to riding every day that I can, I always go out for about an hours walk every morning at 5AM. With the wind, it can get pretty nippy at times. Guess that helps keep me used to it.

Lisa, the trick is to just keep trying different things and sooner or later you'll find what works best.

Paulie, you're right about that. I certainly don't walk very far in that getup.
 

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Great post. Sharing like that is what many riders, myself included, needs. I'm not a serious cold weather rider but there was good info for anyone.

Thanks

Benny
 

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It was 18 degrees here in Maryland on Thursday. I rode in to work wearing the following:
Top
Leather M/C Jacket w/o liner
Fleece sweatshirt
T-Shirt over a L/S T-Shirt
Bottom
Long Undies
Jeans
Chaps
Balaclava

FirstGear Voyager Gloves
HJC CL-33 3/4 helmet w/full faceshield

No worries or chills

Radar
 

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Sanoke,

If you'd change to a electric jacket interliner you could do away with the leather vest/fleece turtleneck. Maybe one other item. But you could lighten the cloth thickness' a little with the electric stuff(for the body core). You'd still be using the leather jacket/liner....but you got a bunch more "flexibility". :roll:

Lower body stuff is good, except for the "lace style" boots. Never had a pair that I liked for riding bike. :wink:

Maybe you should "borrow" a electric jacket liner and try this slim downed method.

Bullzeyet
 

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Just to add my 2 cents... I can't say enough about "Smart Wool" socks.
The are designed not to lose shape after a hundred washings. It takes too long to get your toes warmed back up after a cold ride. These work.
Of course, good boots add to the comfort.
 

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Great list of stuff to use!! Another item I picked up last weekend but have not used yet are disposable hand warmers. I was at Lowes checking out some tools and saw some of those hand warmers that you just open and shake and they get warm. I used to use them years ago when I went hunting and got to thinking that they might work for riding also.
On boots, in cold/wet weather I wear my work boots. I have a pair of Danner boots and they are great for cold and wet weather. In normal weather I have a pair of Army boots that are fantastic for riding. I guess I am a leather fanatic but it doesn't matter if it is hot or cold I am going to be wearing leather boots, chaps, and gloves all the time.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
bullzeyet said:
Sanoke,

If you'd change to a electric jacket interliner you could do away with the leather vest/fleece turtleneck. Maybe one other item. But you could lighten the cloth thickness' a little with the electric stuff(for the body core). You'd still be using the leather jacket/liner....but you got a bunch more "flexibility". :roll:

Lower body stuff is good, except for the "lace style" boots. Never had a pair that I liked for riding bike. :wink:

Maybe you should "borrow" a electric jacket liner and try this slim downed method.

Bullzeyet
Good suggestion. I've thought about trying one but I don't really have any trouble with flexibility as it is now. I've worn the stuff often enough that it just all seems like a natural fit. Guess it's all in what you get used to.
 

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I use to dress similar to Sanoke but felt I was to much mass and felt uncomfortable but (I was warm) except the fingers, so now I go electric jacket liner and gloves and no more bulk and ride real comfortable, should done it this way a few years back, but hell then they didn't have all this tech'e crap......... :lol:
 

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Bigguy2x,
Go ahead and get the heated grips and you won't regret it. I installed a pair of those grip heaters on my Shadow (the ones that go under the grips, made for snowmobiles) and I absolutely love'm. I then decided to put a pair of them on my Yamaha work bike for those chilly mornings. It will feel so nice ot have warm hands (and a much safer ride!)
-Nothing worse then having frozen fingers while riding. >PD<
 
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