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Mar 20th 2018, 06:04 PM   #1
 
  Mar 2018
  Gig Harbor

  2008 BMW R1200GS Adventure
What gear for PNW Daily Rider?

So Iíll be getting (something... still not sure) by this weekend. Been out of the loop long enough that I donít know what brand is offering the most features/safety for the money.

Do you guys have any recommendations for helmet and gear? Iím not a flashy person and have always liked the tasteful flat black helmets. Iíd like Bluetooth connectivity, but the most important thing is obviously it not letting my head break.

And what jacket/boots/gloves/etc do you all like for this rainy area?

I will be riding year round, unless there is snow/ice.
Mar 21st 2018, 06:18 AM   #2
 Sentinel's Avatar
 
  Jun 2016
  Poor Tortured

  2015 Kawasaki Concours 14 - The Origame Sea-Dragon
mostly, 4th.

LOL.

Hi Viz. Fuck "style" and go for "alive".
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Mar 21st 2018, 08:25 AM   #3
 coastrider's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Oregon Coast

  2017 BMW R1200RT
Your budget will likely drive some of your choices. If you are riding year round that means rain so if it was me that would be my next consideration.

Helmet style, full or partial, is a personal decision. I like a full helmet for safety and would also go that route to keep dry.

If I was commuting every day and wanted to quickly be able to walk into or our of work I would go for a waterproof one piece suit. I went to the Aerostich pop-up event in Gresham and liked their gear. I think the Roadcrafter one-piece would be a great northwest daily-rider outfit. It is very quick to step in and out of and fairly waterproof. Obviously that is an expensive way to go. For less money you can go with a rain suit that goes over some conventional riding gear.

I have summer gloves and winter gloves. The summer gloves have some sort of a synthetic fur lining that makes them comfortable but they become quite hard to put on once wet. So make sure your gloves are OK when wet. Two pair would be nice in the winter so you can alternate days and let one pair dry out for a day between rides.
Mar 21st 2018, 08:40 AM   #4
 albatrosscafe's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Issaquah

  2015 Yamaha FZ-07
I also commute year-round. Here is everything I need for commuting in harsh weather:

- Riding Gear -

Helmet: Shoei GT AIR
Suit: Firstgear Thermo 1-piece suit
Boots (97% of the time): Alpinestar Roam 2
Boots (3% - only in torrential downpour): Regular ole' Muck Boots
Gloves 1: Held Warm N' Dry (seem to be discontinued?)
Gloves 2: Some other winter/waterproof pair. Couldn't tell ya the brand though

- Misc. Gear -

Bike: 2015 Yamaha FZ-07
Heated Grips: Yamaha OEM universal heated grips
Dryer: Peet Motorsports dryer (has attachments for helmet, gloves, and boots)

I prefer a one-piece weatherproof suit as opposed to 2 pieces. It's easy to put on and take off over everything, and you don't have to worry about a seam in the middle to buckle up or that weather can get in at. I wear a synthetic moto jacket underneath it for added protection (suit itself has no armor).

I have 2 pairs of gloves. If one day I get completely SOAKED I just like to have a fresh pair to wear the next day while the other dries. Not necessary if you have a dryer, but more of a personal preference.

My Alpinestar waterproof boots I've been using for over 3 years now. They are good in light to moderate rain and cold, but in heavier stuff my feet get wet. If I am going out for the day and its already pouring when I leave the house, I'll just wear regular rain/mud boots that I know won't leak at all.

My Shoei GT-AIR helmet has been great. Has the little fabric thing that goes around your chin to block out some of the wind/noise. I like the "flip down sun shade" it has as opposed to changing out the windscreen. It is comfortable.

IMO a dryer is essential. It takes a lot of the stress out of worrying if your gloves, helmet, or boot will be mildewy or wet by the next morning. Also, I think heated grips (no matter what gloves you have) are necessary if you want to ride in close-to-freezing temps. They made a huge difference for me both in comfort and in control of the motorcycle.

This setup has worked for me for 25k miles so far on my FZ-07. I like that suit and everything else because I can ride in cold temps (been in as low as 24 degrees) or warmer and wet temps and be comfortable either way, although I will say that 50+ degrees gets a little warm if the sun starts to break through when it should be raining.

Hope this helps.
Mar 21st 2018, 09:09 AM   #5
 CaptainAwesome's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  WA

  Harley Davidson LR-S
Hi-Viz is for day time, retro-reflective is for night time.

Cyclegear has a lot of helmets you can try. My full face is a Shoei and comfortable. Bluetooth can come later with some aftermarket stuff, start with a helmet that fits well otherwise it will give you a headache all day. They have different shapes to them depending on the shape of your head.


I have two sets of gear; winter and not-winter.

For rain you want Gore-tex and a pinlock on your helmet visor. Triumph of Seattle has some pretty decent gear.


I know you're also looking at bikes, if you find one that can run Pilot Road 4 tires on it I would highly recommend it. Makes a huge difference in the rain and you're enjoyment in riding in it.
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Mar 21st 2018, 12:53 PM   #6
 albatrosscafe's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Issaquah

  2015 Yamaha FZ-07
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainAwesome
...a pinlock on your helmet visor.
I forgot about "pinlock" and I totally agree! Nothing sucks more than having a visor open in a downpour because it fogs up!
Mar 21st 2018, 01:38 PM   #7
 
  Mar 2018
  Gig Harbor

  2008 BMW R1200GS Adventure
Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainAwesome
Hi-Viz is for day time, retro-reflective is for night time.

Cyclegear has a lot of helmets you can try. My full face is a Shoei and comfortable. Bluetooth can come later with some aftermarket stuff, start with a helmet that fits well otherwise it will give you a headache all day. They have different shapes to them depending on the shape of your head.


I have two sets of gear; winter and not-winter.

For rain you want Gore-tex and a pinlock on your helmet visor. Triumph of Seattle has some pretty decent gear.


I know you're also looking at bikes, if you find one that can run Pilot Road 4 tires on it I would highly recommend it. Makes a huge difference in the rain and you're enjoyment in riding in it.
I just picked up a 2003 VROD 100th anniversary with 8500 miles. Good for Pilot Road 4?
Mar 21st 2018, 01:58 PM   #8
 Thumperpilot's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Rome

  SV650S, CRF450R, and others
I would go one piece. Less hassle and there is only about 1 month of weather where it might be too warm.
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Mar 21st 2018, 02:21 PM   #9
 paradox206's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Des Moines

  M1200S, VFR800, XR650R & GSXR750
Road 5 tires are actually out now, which is what I'm getting for my Monster (they've been great on my VFR for commuting).

I'm another person to recommend a one-piece suit, specifically an Aerostich Roadcrafter. I'd suggest filling out the sizing request the Aerostich website to find out what size you should go with, then go one size larger and buy a used suit on eBay for half the price (these were the steps I took and it worked out perfectly). It makes commuting to work SO much easier compared to having to change in a bathroom stall when you get there (unless you're lucky and have a private office). If you're against looking like a dork though, I liked the build quality and fit of Rev'it gear, especially the Gear 2 pants paired with a comparable jacket of theirs (like the Ignition Jacket). I also like Dainese, but they're totally cut for Italian models, or you have to go up a couple sizes and they still don't fit quite right (at least for me).

Pinlock is also a must, but if you don't have a Pinlock ready visor or a helmet with a Pinlock visor as an option, you can get an Invision fog insert (formerly known as Fog City) which is the poor man's Pinlock insert. It's better than the spray on stuff or wearing a Respro Foggy, which may or may not work depending on how your face/nose is shaped (they don't work for me).

I'd also make sure you get properly fitted gloves. Too often people buy gloves where their finger tips touch/press against the inside finger tips of the gloves when gripping the bars and even minor fingertip pressure can cut off circulation. If you read Dainese's glove fitment procedure they're quite adamant about this point (and I've learned from experience). I also like "Grip Puppies" (foam grip covers) to eliminate some of the buzz in my bars and to help keep my huge hands from over-wrapping the grips. Some people think they're stupid looking, but they make my hands feel great and the added diameter of the grip provides me better throttle control. I even use them on my track bike.

As for the rest of the gear, I like SIDI Cobra Gore-Tex boots and my Arai Defiant Pro-Cruise helmet. I do not like my Sena 20s com system, as it's not rated as even water resistant per Sena (listening to "group pairing" over and over again and not being able to turn it off without detaching it in a light rain storm SUCKS), but the Sena 30k is supposed to be water resistant. My Sena SMH-10 never gave me any issues though and I should have never bothered to "upgrade".
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Edited by paradox206 on Mar 21st 2018 at 02:24 PM
Mar 21st 2018, 03:33 PM   #10
 alienbogey's Avatar
 
  Feb 2016
  Gig Harbor

Consider an airbag vest or jacket.

I have a Helite jacket and my wife has the Helite vest. Advantage of the vest is that it can go over whatever you're already wearing.

I see you're in Gig Harbor - if you'd like to stop by to check them out send me a PM.
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Mar 21st 2018, 03:43 PM   #11
 CaptainAwesome's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  WA

  Harley Davidson LR-S
Quote:
Originally Posted by Didley
I just picked up a 2003 VROD 100th anniversary with 8500 miles. Good for Pilot Road 4?
A quick Google on your tire size:

Front tire: 120/70-ZR19 60W
Rear tire: 180/55-ZR18 74W



Looks like only for the front. One of the problems is the PR4s are pretty soft and Harleys turn the wheels pretty hard with a lot of weight on top and to make it even worse they run larger wheel sizes than most other bikes. The Harley forum should have some recommendations on what works best... that's available for the wheel size. On the bright side the factory ones do go for over 10,000 miles.

I don't mind not having PR4s on my bike. The problem is is what makes a Harley more fun than normal on a sunny day makes it less fun than normal on a wet one. I have no trouble riding mine in the rain, granted I can tell my factory tires aren't gripping as much as the PR4s did in the wet, but you just have to keep that in mind and ride like it's raining. Only real problem I have is if I ride like I want to I'll spin the rear wheel. Always feels in control like you just put it into neutral, but it's annoying... like you just put it into neutral, lol.
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Mar 21st 2018, 05:05 PM   #12
 Chrishil54's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Kirkland

  2009 V-Star 1100 Custom
I ride year round, unless it's down to the freezing point. The gear that I use:
Hi-Viz BiLT helmet with integrated sun visor or an HJC with pinlock & reflective stickers on it.
Joe Rocket 2.0 jacket with removable insulating liner.
BiLT riding pants with removable insulation.
BiLT riding boots (shopping for replacements though).
Goretex Fabric cruiser gloves.
Two piece rain outfit that goes over my other gear.
Neck warmer.
Freeze Out glove liners.
Four Plastic grocery bags (doubled up) between my feet and the inside of the boots. (don't laugh, my feet don't get wet nor cold that way).
Polar fleece shirt under the jacket for those cold day.

Keep the rain gear on the bike as you never know when you'll need to use it. It also works great as another layer on those really cold, dry days.

Like any outdoor activity, I can't stress enough about layering. It's a lot easier to take a layer off if you're warm than it is to find something mid-ride if you're cold.
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Mar 21st 2018, 08:49 PM   #13
 
  Mar 2018
  Gig Harbor

  2008 BMW R1200GS Adventure
Thanks, guys. Really a ton of useful information that I never needed riding around the swamp.

For the anti-fog stuff... my new Bilt helmet doesnít have the pin locks so I need to spray the inside visor with something.

It may be weird, but when scuba diving, your spit is the best fog-preventer there is for your mask. Iíd see guys show up with expensive anti-fog sprays and I would just be spitting away.

Difference is that you canít bresthe through your nose when diving, so maybe the fact that your whole helmet will smell like dried spit makes it not such a good idea.
Mar 22nd 2018, 01:33 AM   #14
 Thumperpilot's Avatar
 
  Jan 2016
  Rome

  SV650S, CRF450R, and others
I've got Cat Crap for my visor. I'm not very good about using it but it does work.
Mar 22nd 2018, 04:07 PM   #15
Rix
 Rix's Avatar
 
  Apr 2016
  tacoma

  2014 vstrom 650, 2005 fz1, 82 cm400, 82 450 nighthawk, 83 virago 500, 71 cb175, 70 cl100, 1984 magna
What i'm using and is working quite well currently:
Firstgear jacket, kenya model.
pockets, so far waterproof, lotsa vents. after 3 years of pretty continual use, the zippers are getting a little sticky. I haven't done anything to remedy it. some wax would probably help.
Aerostich darien pants. Awesome. waterproof, easy on/off.
klim element short gloves. first pair would get slightly damp in downpours. gore replaced under warranty.
tcx gore tex boots. i forget which model. waterproof, not too hot. good stuff.
arai xd4 with pinlock. good helmet. gets a little hot, probably in part due to my windshield.
kinda get splashed a little inside the helmet sometimes. not terrible.
used it snowmobiling......didn't do so well. lots of fogging, but..... I was on a snowmobile.

I have other gear i use more in summer. I don't see any one set of gear being perfect for everything.
I WILL be getting a roadcrafter.
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