returning rider after 25 years..
and seeking gear advice. I've riddin about 30k miles that ended some time ago. Back then we had leather jackets, semi decent helmets and leather gloves. Things have indeed changed. My kid got a BMW 650 GS, Rev it jacket and a German made helmet. The vented jacket is good year round, helmet is far more coverage and lighter, etc.
I'm buying a cruiser, and will be riding it for work as well. It has a windshield, so gravel in the eyes should be a lesser problem.
I have a decent leather jacket for mild weather for now. I'm looking at hot, humid summer and 20*F winters, some rain maybe as I have a fair weather part time job. Recommend me some decent gear that won't break the bank..
I make most of my living on motorcycles. PLEASE take the Motorcycle Safety Foundation Basic Rider course. No excuses. Just do it. You previous experience means little. The old saying about practice make perfect is dead wrong. Practice just makes PERMANENT. Odds are that riding without training just means the rider is good at doing the wrong things.
Windshields: Are not worth a shit as eye protection. Windshields are sized so that you look over them,not through them. Gravels, road debris, etc will all mess up your face and eyes unless you wear a face shield.
I do not buy leather anymore. I like the protection, and I have a couple thousand dollars in leather gear hanging in the closet. But it doesn't work well for me, since its often too damned hot to wear. Supremely constructed leather does no good if its not on you. I've been buying textile jackets of various kinds. Two good textiles jackets - one full three quarter lenght winter wieght with liners and one mesh bomber length jacket with liners - takes me from March to November on the Canadian border. Gloves - you'll need at least two sets - summer and spring/fall
The textile jackets aren't as good in a crash as leather BUT, textiles on you beat leather in the closet. I've bought AGV, ICON, FirstGear, Bellstaff, and others. I've been happy with all of them.
Helmets: You do not need to buy a $600 helmet. Some of the pricier ones are a bit lighter, or have better paint/graphics if you want to look like Ricky Racer, but a lot of modestly priced DOT helmets do a really good job.
try web bike world
for reviews on gear. There is about a year's worth of reading there.
I'm riding in much the same climate and I've found that a mesh one piece suit is ideal for my commute. Easy on and off. I got mine from Teiz Motorsports
. With the liners and proper layering, balaclava, neck gaiter, winter gloves it was sufficient for high 20s, but only for the duration of my commute –– any more than an hour and I'd be looking for something else (likely heated gear.)
Don't forget real boots! Sliding down the road with a motorcycle on top of your leg is no time to discover the deficiencies of using work/hiking boots for riding boots.
Froz - both my son (new rider) and myself are taking the MSF course. I can't very well tell him to take it and I not do it.. We are gonna take advanced basic and intermediate courses also. Nothing beats good training..
mnd: Figured you'd have the strait scoop and the 'dollars and sense" method as well. I do wear eye pro, windshield or no windshield. I once got a huge juicy bug right between the eyes at about 45 mph once, and once was enough..
Not sure if I want to go for a full faced helmet just yet, I still ride with my old 3/4 bucket and yes i know they have a shelf life. i know the full face is more protective.
Any advice on rain gear?
Originally Posted By Ops:
Any advice on rain gear?
Very little motorcycle gear that is advertized as "waterproof" actually is (or at least I haven't found it yet.)
I've been in some pretty amazing rain and the Frog Toggs kept everything dry. You do have to remember to stop and put them on though.
They work really well as an extra wind layer when it gets cold.
we buy a couple dozen sets off rain suits for use in BRc classes. Frogg Toggs last about two classes and they are torn in the pits and crotch.
You can buy a cheap motorcycle rain suit. It will last as long as it takes you to brush the suit up against a hot pipe, then it melts.
I am using a tourmaster sentinel. It works well. About $75 for the jacket and same again for pant. MUCH more durable than frogg toggs, and there is a nomex like material lining the insside of legs so it does not melt. I would buy it again in a minute.
I took the free Edmund Motorcycle riders program here in Oklahoma.thinking it would help me get my endorsment, well every thing was cool untill the cop
came through the cones on his full dressed at a good clip! I thought holly molly I had better jusst go home now cause ain[t no way in hell i can do that.
But at the end of the day my old 95 shadow with it's 37 degree rake was doing just fine. That piece of paper was of no help in gettinng my M on the licence.
But I then took the ERC course because I was afraid even with even 40 years of riding experience i might not be able to pass the Norman Okla test.
The course was at the old North side mall 36 and lottie. and DonBrowning was the head master(damn fine man and a good teacher) I had problems
from the start because they were teaching you to look through your turns and there was a lot of loose fine gravel on the lot.
I told him I'm looking up as muxh as I can,as an afterthought I can see why it was what it was.
There are no perfect clean swept streets and you will encounter loose gravel and and everyday.
And in the end we all lear ned from the class. Bob