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Speedaholic
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Discussion Starter · #1 ·

Well, the weather outside is frightful,
but riding is so delightuful.

So what is everyone's secret for staying warm?

I personally go with the layer method.
Start off with a some nice, soft, fleece long underwear. Can get it at walmart in the hunting section for pretty cheap. Nice, soft, and comfy. I think it was called polar fleece. The cotton stuff is good too, but thinner.

For a sweater, I wear one of those fleece pullovers, usually a size smaller than normal so it doesn't bunch up under my jacket. It has a little bit of a collar, that fits snug around my neck when I zip it up. I'm a big fan of fleece.

And over the top, a nice layer of black leather. Like a good friend once told me: "Buy leather, cows will keep you warm." If the sun ever comes out, black will get warmer quicker than a lighter colored suit. I've had a set of Fieldsheer pants and jacket for years, no perferation at all, and zips up with a full circumference zipper so it'll seal you up pretty good. One piece Aerostich suits are supposed to work pretty good, especially when it gets wet. I just personally like leather better.

Socks, usually two pair, I'm a big fan of Thorlo's. Thick, and warm.
They got just about any size/color/thickness you can fit under a boot. And boots, definitely. I got an old set of Gearne's, no perferation. I've heard steel toed boots suck when riding around freezing, but never tried it.

http://www.thorlo.com/

I finish it up with a balaclava, and shut all the vents on the helmet.

Gloves: I personally haven't found a set of gloves that kept my hands warm, still gave good feel on the controls, and had good styling. If anyone has any suggestions, I'd be interested.

I've found that for emergencies, a set of those latex mechanics gloves worn under your riding gloves, will warm your hands up a good bit, actually make them start sweating. And a newspaper under your jacket will keep in some heat, and the the wind off your chest.

Personally, my limits for long distance comfortable riding is about 40 degrees. 'Bout the coldest I've ever ridden is 20. I'm sure there's people out there that ride all day at 50 below on black ice, but that's not my bag, baby. Just haven't found a way to keep my fingers warm. Maybe heated grips? Anyone tried that?
Or a heated vest?

 

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Forum Leader,
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I do the same thing. Layers are the key. You can find some killer deals on polar fleece stuff at www.sierratradingpost.com

I have never used heated grips but those that have them say they are the shit in cold weather. I have a pair of Alpinestar winter riding gloves that work pretty well down to the 40 degree mark.
 

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Gore Windstopper fabric (used by Mountain Hard Wear brand gear). Thin, warm, and totally airtight. You can ride around in freezing weather with just a Windstopper pullover, and not feel a bit of cold. Of course, under a jacket it's unbeatable. Pricey though; a pullover retails for $115 or so. All you need is one.

For base layers, Patagonia Capilene (available in silkweight, lightweight, middleweight, heavyweight, and expedition weight). There's generic versions that are less expensive and work just as good. If you're cold they trap heat, if you sweat they evaporate it super fast, creating a cooling effect, and keeping dry. You can go jogging in freezing weather, then sit down on a park bench, and never be hot, or cold. It's like having a thermostat.

Combined, it's a perfect combination. Like Brad said, get them tight fitting. That way they can wick the moisture off your skin, and trap heat without drafts, while fitting under your jacket/pants.

Blue Ridge Mountain Sports, and Wild River Outfitters carry both lines (both in VB), or discounted at campmor.com
 

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Wannabe racer................
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Layers can't compete with a set of First Gear pants and jacket. I went to the First Gear site but couldn't find my stuff on there; mine's pretty old.

But trust me. If you want to keep warm just get some First Gear gear. It's warm and comfortable.
 

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Wannabe racer................
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Hatchman said:

Personally, my limits for long distance comfortable riding is about 40 degrees. 'Bout the coldest I've ever ridden is 20. I'm sure there's people out there that ride all day at 50 below on black ice, but that's not my bag, baby. Just haven't found a way to keep my fingers warm. Maybe heated grips? Anyone tried that?
Or a heated vest?
My first winter here all I had was my CB750. It was crazy. I was living in my apartment with just my entertainment center, air mattress and one pot to make my mac and cheese in. Had to trek back from the grocery store with my goods in my backpack and tank pack. What fun those days were.

There all fully heated suits you can buy. Pricey, but they're out there.
 

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Problem is, if you drop the bike below 3k rpms, the bike will die due to the excessive power being drawn from the suits.

I used to live up north, seen plenty of suits, gloves, socks, vests etc. That was always a problem.
 

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Same as most of the above but I add a neck gator that tucks inside my jacket and switch to mittens rather than gloves.

The neck gator can be tucked into the bottom of the helmet and stops wind from getting in around the bottom and the mittens better tranfer heat from the usually warmer inner fingers to the usually fridged outer digits plus less exposed surface area.

These two items have made a huge difference for me.
 

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The coldest I've ridden in was the Polar Bear ride a few years ago up North. Can't even remember the temp. After that I got Gerbing heated gloves & jacket liner. The gloves are great 'cause the electrics run down the fingers, not just to the palm. :thumb
I used to ride to work every day in D.C. all through the winter. The looks I got were priceless! :laughing Little did the people know who were out walking around looking at the crazy bitch on the bike that I was comfy & warm! :D
 
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