Confessions of a self-admitted wuss

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SCgurl
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Confessions of a self-admitted wuss

#1 Unread post by SCgurl » Sat Nov 22, 2008 1:33 pm

You Canadian folks will laugh at this, but-

It's a beautiful, sunny, clear, dry day here in SC. So why am I inside on the computer and not out riding? Because it's friggin' 40 degrees outside! :cold:

I haven't ridden in 2 weeks. Forget about getting me out in the morning on the way to work-the birdbath has been frozen over every morning. No matter how many layers I wear, I get around the block and go "NUH UH!" and revert to the cage. It's not the discomfort, really-it's that I can't stop shivering. If I can't stop shivering, I can't steer.

It's so cold, I can't steady my hands long enough to check tire pressure.

Maybe it's that I feel the need to wear a t-shirt, knit shirt, and a sweater indoors (at 68 degrees). Maybe it's that it was 90 degrees here 2 weeks ago, and the temps dropped overnight. Maybe it's that I rode all summer in the same 90-100 degree temps, with 80% humidity.

All I know is, if I can't find a jacket with the equivalent warmth of my ski jacket soon, I will be wearing said ski jacket (which is not bike-friendly-it rides up in the back) until the temps come back up to normal. And if I don't ride soon, I'm liable to go postal.
:shooting2:

I've tried leather and textile, and nothing seems to cut the chill. I don't think my bike's battery will handle heated gear. So if you folks in the colder climes would be so kind as to: a) tell me what you wear or b) take your cold air back, it might prevent me from moving to, say, Costa Rica in search of tolerable temps.

Thanks for letting me rant!
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#2 Unread post by Shorts » Sat Nov 22, 2008 6:32 pm

:lol:

Well the wind chill got me pretty good up here. The small thing that really made a difference was a neck warmer. I just wore a fleece wrap and cinched it with its little cord to make it snug and comfy. It was the smallest winter thing I did that made the biggest difference.

For pants, I wore Under Armour underneath my riding jeans (that were already warm with the kevlar layer).


I've never tried these but they seem like they'd do a job is the hand guards that go in front of the handlebars. They keep the wind off.

Also, get a good screen for winter. It makes a very big difference.

They key to staying warm when its cold out there is cutting the wind chill.

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#3 Unread post by goodies » Sat Nov 22, 2008 7:35 pm

I hear you SC!! Your not alone! I am in the Charlotte NC area, it has been bitter and record lows. I am one of those to that will have a jacket on when it is 70 too :) I did go last Sunday, it was low 50's, but the wind chill made it so much colder. I couldn't hang long, even with chaps and my other warmer gear. I seen a guy riding to work the other morning and it was 17!!! He became my hero!!

Hopefully tomorrow it is supposed to be mid 50 and no wind, so I am going to try it again.

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#4 Unread post by dr_bar » Sat Nov 22, 2008 8:53 pm

Take a look at page 161 in this online catalog... The storm walker jacket only draws .6 amps of power... Although, I think the Stormrider vest is the one I'll be getting and it pulls 4.1 amps. It will also heat my body to 122*F and keep it there if I so desired, with that said, the thermostat is also on order....

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#5 Unread post by ofblong » Sat Nov 22, 2008 9:11 pm

i wear

teknic textile jacket with liner
heated leather gloves (hooked right to battery mmm toasty warm. makes my hands sweat at 40F if turned on)
thermasilk long johns,

blue jeans
and under 35F i wear my carhart coveralls.

That combo has kept me warm down to 14F. 14 I could start to feel the cold through the clothing. Oh and I have a WINDSHIELD on the bike.
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#6 Unread post by SCgurl » Sat Nov 22, 2008 9:43 pm

*Sigh*.... :roll:

I tried again today. Mostly, with borrowed stuff-this is still experimentation for me. Today's run:

Long johns (both leggings and shirt)
Jeans
chaps (that were big enough to ride up and cover part of my big butt-go figure)
long sleeve t-shirt
long sleeve knit shirt
long-sleeve fleece pullover
Big ol' leather jacket (that the friend I borrowed it from swears by)
Fleece Buff as a neck warmer
Knit scarf around neck and tucked into jacket, but covering mouth
Knit hat
Full-face helmet with vents closed
Leather gloves
Knit gloves under those
2 pairs of socks
And a partridge in a pear tree... :laughing:

So, I traded the cold for ever having any hope of disrobing in time to use the restroom if need be. Or, you know, moving my arms higher than waist level. And it took assistance just to get on the bike.

Just for a comparison, I learned to ski in the Alps, at night, in February, at 3900 meters. I wore the fleece pullover, 2 t-shirts, jeans (uh huh, jeans-I was ill-prepared), wool gloves, and long johns. Aside from my gloves freezing to my poles, I was fine. Actually, I was sweating. Although there were a few shots involved as well... :innoncent:

I have a windshield on order. I need it, like, yesterday.

Thanks for the suggestions on the heated gear-I'll have to see if my bike can be wired for it. Of course, this wouldn't be a problem if we didn't have freakishly cold weather. :blink:

And goodies-I thought you guys were getting the really hard freezes? I know we're usually a good 10-15 degrees warmer than you folks...
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#7 Unread post by blues2cruise » Sat Nov 22, 2008 11:11 pm

I wear a balaclava under my helmet. It keeps the neck, chin, and ears warm.
I also wear a lightweight down jacket under my riding jacket. My riding pants have a quilted liner.
I finally resorted to heated gloves because my hands would never warm up no matter what gloves I used.

You can get some of those heat packs that last for about 5 hours to stick inside your boots. They will keep your feet warm on a cold day.

It was about 45F here today. I didn't put my down jacket on until the sun went down. I'd guess it was about 38F by the time I was heading home.
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#8 Unread post by Brackstone » Sun Nov 23, 2008 7:27 am

SCGurl if my wife was riding i'm sure she'd be exactly like you so I find it very amusing and a great write up!

Any chance we can get a picture of you when you are fully geared out with everything you listed above? I would absolutely LOVE to see that :D
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#9 Unread post by ofblong » Sun Nov 23, 2008 9:13 am

ahh no wonder your cold. Trust me that windshield will make more of a difference in keeping you "wamer" than you can ever imagine.
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#10 Unread post by SCgurl » Sun Nov 23, 2008 11:42 am

Brackstone (puts finger to nose)-you get it!

Re: pics-yes, a pic was taken. Unfortunately, that camera is headed back to Savannah as we speak. If you have ever seen "A Christmas Story" and remember Ralphie in the snowsuit-well, that's what I looked like. Only in leather and with a much tinier head :laughing:

In other news-whoooohoooo! It's supposed to get to 70 degrees today! 8) I might be able to do something with that!

I've ordered yet another jacket (Kilamanjaro) since the reviews seemed to indicate it was a good jacket for cold weather. I'm going out looking for Carhartts today (had forgotten about those). I also ordered fleece glove liners. I've been knitting a neck gaiter for about 2 weeks-I need to step up that schedule. And as soon as the BF wakes up, we'll start looking at wiring the bike for heated gear (he's done the whole EE thing). Other than that, I think it's gonna be just wait for the windshield. And keep looking for my own chaps. They seemed to cut the cold on the legs the best so far.

Today's lesson-we now know that fat people are not necessarily comfortable in cold... :wink:
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#11 Unread post by goodies » Sun Nov 23, 2008 7:33 pm

SCgurl wrote:*Sigh*.... :roll:

And goodies-I thought you guys were getting the really hard freezes? I know we're usually a good 10-15 degrees warmer than you folks...
We have been!!! Record lows, with a wind chill that unbeliveable. I have been miserable and starting to get mean. I don't even want to stop and pump gas, I let the gas light come on in the cage before I forced myself to stop. :evil:

But today it did get up to the low 50's and I got to ride some. Not long enough, I hung until my nose started running and my hands were numb.

long johns
jeans
chaps
sweatshirt
my riding jacket with the wind liner
thermsulate gloves

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#12 Unread post by SCgurl » Sun Nov 23, 2008 10:01 pm

I did get out and ride a whole 20 miles before I couldn't take the chill.

Pssst-goodies-I say we run away and hang in, say, Key West for the winter. I'll take you about 3.5 hours to get here, it takes about 5 hours to get to Jacksonville from here, and from there, well, times are fuzzy-I figure we can make it by Friday.... :laughing:
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#13 Unread post by coffee_brake » Sun Nov 23, 2008 11:00 pm

SCGurl,
I was born and raised around Charleston and still go back often (maybe we can meet up this summer for a ride!)

You sound strangely cold to me, may I suggest from my own "raised in warm climates" strategies:

Don't wrap up tight. Leave room for air, the warmth is in the air *between* your layers. I wear big boots with regular thin wool socks so there is air around my toes and I am warm.
Please consider that this is important under your leathers too. You need a floppy warm layer (wool for me) under your wind-cutting layer (leathers) so your warmth can stay near you and not get squished out the sleeves and bottom. Trust me, if you are feeling cold, the wool won't itch you a bit. I like wool better than fleece because it is thinner and stays warm even if you get a little damp. Fleece will NOT keep you warm if it gets wet.

If your layers are tight around your body they won't work to keep you warm.
If you are cold by the time you get your tire gauge out, maybe your metabolism is slower? Honestly, I go to the gym and stay in shape just so I can ride more, and longer. It keeps my metabolism high and I stay warmer all winter and handle the heat better in the summer.

I do run heated gloves because I can't find a good way to keep a warm layer of air around my hands while keeping control of the bike. I used to shiver uncontrollably too, until I discovered that wool under leather was unbeatable for chest, legs, and feet (don't forget a wool scarf to keep your neck and chest warm, you can tuck it into your helmet chinbar to keep the wind out) will keep you warm with or without a windshield.
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#14 Unread post by TylerR » Tue Nov 25, 2008 10:44 pm

Heated gear, woman!!! I bought a Gerbing heated jacket liner and gloves (they plug into the jacket) a couple of years ago. Once you've gone heated, you'll be SO glad that you did! There are lots of other brands out there - Tourmaster, etc. so do some research to find out which one would be right for you. :D
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#15 Unread post by goodies » Wed Nov 26, 2008 10:28 am

SCgurl wrote:Pssst-goodies-I say we run away and hang in, say, Key West for the winter. I'll take you about 3.5 hours to get here, it takes about 5 hours to get to Jacksonville from here, and from there, well, times are fuzzy-I figure we can make it by Friday.... :laughing:
I am on the way!! Woohoo!!!

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#16 Unread post by ofblong » Wed Nov 26, 2008 3:58 pm

Florida is overrated. Way to many old people that dont know how to drive (or go across 3 lanes of traffic without flinching to get to some store they want to be at). I would rather head to Texas myself.
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#17 Unread post by SCgurl » Sat Dec 20, 2008 11:44 am

Thank you, Canadians and western folks, for taking your cold air back-it's been 80 degrees F here for the last week and a half.

Of course, this was after putting a windshield on the bike, spending many hours trying to figure out how to wire my bike for heated gear, spending hours online looking for chaps that might fit and warmer jackets.

But that's OK, we're supposed to freeze again Monday. So now I will put the windshield back on the bike and put the mesh jacket back in the closet. I did manage to score a brand-new, super-warm Harley leather jacket on Ebay for $75 (no, I don't ride a Harley and yes, it really is a Harley jacket :laughing: ). I can pull out my brand new heated gloves that I haven't used yet, and, although I still haven't managed to acquire chaps, the long johns work OK. The jacket seemed to help the most.

So, in short, I'm not moving to Costa Rica just yet. We seems to be alternating weeks for hot and cold.

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#18 Unread post by blues2cruise » Sat Dec 20, 2008 2:26 pm

You're welcome! :lol:

It's about minus ten here in the sunshine.
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#19 Unread post by Wrider » Sat Dec 20, 2008 4:47 pm

Yeah it's a pretty chilly 58 here right now...
Think I'll go for a ride on my buddy's bike! :laughing:
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#20 Unread post by ceemes » Sat Dec 20, 2008 7:52 pm

Wrider wrote:Yeah it's a pretty chilly 58 here right now...
Think I'll go for a ride on my buddy's bike! :laughing:
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