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Old 10-06-2009, 04:51 AM   #7606
MoBill
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Joined: Mar 2007
Location: NJ
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I've been using the Spot tracker for a few months now. It's a good method for me to send a heads up to my wife when I'm out of cell phone coverage--which isn't often, but in the Barrens here in NJ and also during recent trips through VA and NC it's been great to be able to set up camp and hit the "OK" button to send her a message that I got there safely.

Additionally I used it later to reconstruct my tracks when I couldn't download my GPS and my log was full.

The first generation unit is for sale for under $100 right now, so gettem while they're hot.
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Old 10-06-2009, 05:26 AM   #7607
Chadx
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Location: Bozeman, Montana
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tremor38
On the subject of gloves, what brand did you go with?
All my heated gear I received about 3 weeks ago and am just now starting to need it (morning commute temps in the mid 30s). My gloves are the Firstgear Carbon heated. They are made, for Firstgear, by Warm & Safe, and are identical, except for labeling, as the Warm & Safe Carbon. My liner is a Gerbing's "Gordon Gerbing Limited Edition" (The gray colored one you see around). I was going to hold out for the new microwire technology, but got a killer deal on this one ($130 new) which inluded the harness, etc. so went with it.

I haven't used the liner a whole lot yet so no opinion there. I used it to power the gloves, but am now using a Y cable and using the gloves without a liner. I went with the "on/off switch" to start, to ensure this is the route I wanted to go. It's $14 vs. the $90 for the portable dual controller. I'm now a believer in heated gear so ordered a dual-controller, which arrives tomorrow. Then I can control the gloves and liner separately.

I love the gloves so far. Today is the first real cold day I'll commute. 26 degrees and it will be cooler in the valley by 2 to 6 degrees. My ride is about 17 miles and 25 minutes. I did that commute down to 19 degrees last year, without heated gloves. It always took 30 minutes for my pinkies to thaw even when on my wife's BMW 650CS which has heated grips. The cold air hits the back of my hand more than the palm so my hands would still freeze with the grips. Definitely not as bad as without the heated grips, though. Still, that is why I decided to try the gloves, this year, warming the back of my hands. Will give my thoughts tonight.
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Old 10-06-2009, 09:21 AM   #7608
mtntrails
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Gerbings Gear

Gerbings heated gear is excellent IMHO. The gloves are a little bulky, but they keep your hands / fingers nice n' toasty.

One of the primary reasons I chose a WRR over the 690 Enduro was the ability to run heated gear. 350 peak watts of electrical output is impressive - especially for a 250.
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Old 10-06-2009, 09:46 AM   #7609
cyborg
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtntrails
So, tell me about your experience with the SPOT unit. I have been thinking about utilizing one of those.
On this same Nevada ride recently we were 90 miles North of Elko, near Jarbige, on a remote gravel road, no cell phone coverage, when a county pickup cut a blind corner on the gravel road and hit my riding buddy (and his hard Happy Trails luggage) who was up front. The truck flew into a deep gully and it took awhile for the driver to fix a blown tire and get the truck out of the gully so the shaken-up driver could drive for 30 minutes to get into his cell booster range to call for help. My buddy ended up with a broken clavicle, scapula, 8 ribs and a punctured lung. We had a SPOT and the the 911 button was used. Elko emergency services did get the SPOT call but because their chopper was down, it took 1-1/2 hrs to get emergency vehicles out to that remote area. We saw no other traffic in 5 hours out there, very glad to have had the SPOT -- it does work.

My friend is doing OK now, healing up. He was life-flighted to Reno from Elko for surgery at 1am in the morning.
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Old 10-06-2009, 10:15 AM   #7610
mtntrails
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Thanks Cyborg

Wow! Glad your buddy is doing OK. That is an impressive testimonial. I also like the idea of an "OK" button to let your family know you have arrived safely when out of cell phone range.

I'm in!
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Old 10-06-2009, 10:23 AM   #7611
Fast1
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cyborg
On this same Nevada ride recently we were 90 miles North of Elko, near Jarbige, on a remote gravel road, no cell phone coverage, when a county pickup cut a blind corner on the gravel road and hit my riding buddy (and his hard Happy Trails luggage) who was up front. The truck flew into a deep gully and it took awhile for the driver to fix a blown tire and get the truck out of the gully so the shaken-up driver could drive for 30 minutes to get into his cell booster range to call for help. My buddy ended up with a broken clavicle, scapula, 8 ribs and a punctured lung. We had a SPOT and the the 911 button was used. Elko emergency services did get the SPOT call but because their chopper was down, it took 1-1/2 hrs to get emergency vehicles out to that remote area. We saw no other traffic in 5 hours out there, very glad to have had the SPOT -- it does work.

My friend is doing OK now, healing up. He was life-flighted to Reno from Elko for surgery at 1am in the morning.
Those types of situations certianly don't do the mind well for riding. I have a friend that was life-flighted out of WI after a head-on in blind corner with a 4X4 quad and for the first 30 minutes we did everything possible to just keep him alive. Even with a full face helmet on, he received titanium plates in facial reconstruction due to a passenger on the 4x4 whos shoulder penetrated the opening on his helmet. There wasn't much left holding his knee together and he, unfortunately won't be riding anymore. Be carefull out there, especially on blind corners. Leave the racing for the track or marked one way courses.
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Old 10-06-2009, 11:02 AM   #7612
fullmonte
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fast55
Those types of situations certianly don't do the mind well for riding. I have a friend that was life-flighted out of WI after a head-on in blind corner with a 4X4 quad and for the first 30 minutes we did everything possible to just keep him alive.
Ouch. Sobering story. Check your PMs. Some TE510 questions for you.
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Old 10-06-2009, 04:29 PM   #7613
Chadx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HighFive
Just be careful not to bog her down in 6th on long stretches. Keep the motor in a good "pulling" range, or you might see some engine lights flashing.
This had me curious. Why would the engine light flash in that instance and what type of code would it throw? How much "bogging" will the engine take? When running into a head wind with full dirtbagz, the bike is always "bogged" in my mind, even with 12/43 since it won't wind out and overcome the wind resistance. Or are we talking REALLY bogged and super long distances like tank after tank of gas?

The lack of wind-fighting top end was way worse, of course, with the stock gearing and the taller D606. Anything over about 65mph and I just road in 5th since 6th wouldn't pull much past that. Miserable. Still, I love that we have two overdrive gears (5th and 6th) and can gear according to what each of us needs. I'll run the 12/43 combo until it wears out and decide if the new sprockets and chain will be a 13/46 or 13/48 combo. After riding the 12/43 a week or so, I'm thinking the 13/48 will win. I don't plan on doing exhaust or programmer, so the deeper gearing (and associated mpg drop) will be the way to go for me. Possibly a 14T countershaft sprocket laying around for long distance riding.
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Old 10-06-2009, 04:41 PM   #7614
Chadx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chadx
Today is the first real cold day I'll commute. 26 degrees and it will be cooler in the valley by 2 to 6 degrees. My ride is about 17 miles and 25 minutes. Will give my thoughts tonight.
This morning's commute was uneventful...in a good way. Not cold at all. I didn't use the heated liner. Still not cold enough. But I did use the gloves. Again, I'm currently running with an on/off switch, so it's "full power, Scotty!" or nothing.

It was around 24 degrees most of the ride. All the way into town (3 miles of gravel road then 10miles of 65mph rural highway), my hands felt room temperature. I couldn't feel the heat at all. I couldn't feel the cold at all. Like riding in unheated gloves on a 70 degree day. Perfect.

Once I got into town and hit 4 or 5 stoplights, my hand temp changed from "room temp" to warm. At that point, there was not enough wind blowing against the gloves (stoplights and 30mph zones) to cool them off. This was my experience when I tested them on a 40 degree day at 65mph. You could feel the warmth. On a 40 degree day, once I was in town, they were hot. Too hot. Easy enough cure. Flip off the on/off switch. But then they cooled down real quick. That is what made me decide to order the controller, so I can dial for the conditions.

So, 24 degrees, 25 minutes, no handguards to block the wind, perfect comfort. I'll take that.
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Old 10-06-2009, 05:48 PM   #7615
bash3r
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Heated gear

Chadx.. man, I just started itemizing some heated gear, and boy.. its $$$!! Since this is my first winter on a bike, I'm not sure how cold I'll ride in, I know I'd like to commute to work in 40 degree or warmer so now its down to biggest bang for the buck.

I have a FieldSheer Adventure jacket with the inner liner and I haven't needed the inner yet. I added the neck gaiter and that has helped the chin chills.

Now on to grips & gloves to start... oh and wiring my Rē for the accessories first!
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Old 10-06-2009, 07:04 PM   #7616
CopaMundial
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bash3r
Chadx.. man, I just started itemizing some heated gear, and boy.. its $$$!! Since this is my first winter on a bike, I'm not sure how cold I'll ride in, I know I'd like to commute to work in 40 degree or warmer so now its down to biggest bang for the buck.
Like most things everyone will have a different opinion, but my vote in the bang-for-buck category in cold weather riding goes for:
(a) hippo hands or any similar type of handlebar muffs
(b) a windscreen
(c) heated grips

The big advantage of hippo-hands + heated grips is that it allows you to wear your favorite comfortable gloves rather than something bulky. Personally I start to go nuts when I have to wear anything other than one of my two favorite pairs of gloves.

Just about everything else you can deal with by layering, limiting your distance and well just suffering through it. It's important to remember that riding in bad weather is better than not riding.
Later on, if you find yourself enjoying the winter riding and wanting to go longer and longer distances then additional heated gear with become an obvious choice and the sticker shock will be lessened by the thoughts of the extra riding that it will buy you.

For the temps that you mentioned (40's) you might even be fine w/ just the muffs and windscreen depending on how long your commute is. You would enjoy the heated grips no doubt, and they are really handy for those "in between" days where you may not have predicted the cold weather, but if you're looking for the cheapest way to go then the list above would be my recommended order.
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Old 10-06-2009, 07:16 PM   #7617
Chadx
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bash3r
I know I'd like to commute to work in 40 degree or warmer so now its down to biggest bang for the buck.
This is key to our recommendations...how long is your commute? If you are not talking about going for rides that last an hour or two, and are talking about a 15 - 20 minute commute, you can get away with FAR less gear.

As mentioned, I commuted 16 miles down to 20 degrees with no heated gloves. Sometimes with heated grips and sometimes a little sport fairing, depending on the bike, but just as often on a cruiser without fairing or heated grips. Full outstretched arms and legs. It was cold. But I did it without heated gear. I did it with winter gloves, a gortex shell over my jeans (sometimes poly long underwear under those), a leather jacket with one thick fleece underneath, a full face helmet with a balaclava underneath. They work better than a neck gator because they don't slip off of your chin like a neck gator seems to do and pushing it back up with winter gloves on is kind of tough because you can't feel what you are grabbing.

I agree with copa's number one pick which is something to block the wind on your hands. Regular hand guards at a minimum. Better yet, MSR elephant ears over those. Next step up are the hippo hands type protectors. I've not tried those, but they look like you wouldn't need heated gloves with them.

By the way, my firstgear heated gloves aren't bulky at all. Way less so than my usual winter gloves (Cortech Scarab) and I don't think they are all that bulky either. I wear them year round except when it's too hot (85+). Then I switch to summer gloves, though summer gloves feel like way less protection. I'll be ordering some Motoport kevlar for my summer gloves next year.

So, how long is that commute?

Chadx screwed with this post 10-06-2009 at 07:23 PM
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Old 10-06-2009, 07:27 PM   #7618
HighFive
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chadx
This had me curious. Why would the engine light flash in that instance and what type of code would it throw? How much "bogging" will the engine take? When running into a head wind with full dirtbagz, the bike is always "bogged" in my mind, even with 12/43 since it won't wind out and overcome the wind resistance. Or are we talking REALLY bogged and super long distances like tank after tank of gas?
I shall elaborate. During the "Rocky Mountain Highfive" excursion, we rode some long, meandering uphill runs to get up the mountains.....probably 15 - 20 mile stretches where Garand & I would be running in either 5th or 6th. Garand is a heavyweight in the 275 lbs range. During this climb, under load, in high gear....Garand's engine light came on, and this bothered him. He said everything was functioning normally. But, he sat a while and let the bike rest. This process was repeated a few times. We didn't check for engine codes or anything. The Temp Gauge seemed normal. So, in the end, we just kept riding. Nothing ever happened other than his light would come on and stay on.

Personally, I think his bike was tired and trying to tell him to get off and give it a rest. We had a Loooooong day. I'll admit, it did give me a new idea: figure out how to rig up a remote controlled switch on his light so I could bug the snot out of him next time.

On our final day, when we departed from Monte at Cotopaxi and headed back to San Isabel.....again, we had some long uphill slab runs. And that's when it happened to me. Yup....my engine light came on. But I just kept going and going. She sounded fine....she felt fine....so I kept going and didn't give it much thought. When we crested the top and rode thru the flats, the lights went off on both our bikes. We ended up riding a whole bunch more that day.....as you can read in my Ride Report.

So...yeah, it can happen. Don't know for sure what it is. Haven't seen any side effects or lost any sleep over it. Now Garand....I think maybe he was sweating it and losing sleep....I dunno. As far as me, if she's running...I'm riding!

HF

p.s. never seen it before....never seen it since. And its never happened to me in any state but Colorado. High altitude, long runs, with steep climbs, in high gear, loaded to the max.
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Old 10-06-2009, 07:37 PM   #7619
CopaMundial
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That's the beer light.
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Old 10-06-2009, 07:43 PM   #7620
router.exe
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mtntrails
One of the primary reasons I chose a WRR over the 690 Enduro was the ability to run heated gear. 350 peak watts of electrical output is impressive - especially for a 250.
the bike has 350 peak wattage, however if a bike is bone stock. you only have about 100-120w of available power to run accessory electrics. this coming from the mouth of my mechanic after some rough addition of watt draw as listed in the factory service manual. if you are running a gerbing jacket, you should be fine to run other heaters, since they don't draw nearly as much as warm'n'safe.

just some things to keep in mind for the winter season.
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