Heated grips or warmer gloves?

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by lightfox, Dec 25, 2012.

  1. lightfox

    lightfox Adventurer

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    Merry Christmas, everyone. I know I'm in season for asking about winter gear because it just started getting cold here in Phoenix whereas some of you are much colder temps than I'm in. My only gloves are summer gloves, and I use them for a 10-12 minute commute in the morning, and I'm pretty uncomfortable by the time I get there.

    I'm deciding between adding heated grips or getting gloves made for colder weather. These days it gets to 40 F in the morning and not lower than 36.

    My top choices:
    Oxford Heaterz - $80 + labor because I don't know how to install them
    Alpinestars WR-3 - $160
    Held Warm N Dry - $180

    Would you recommend gloves or heated grips in my situation?
    #1
  2. perterra

    perterra -. --- .--. .

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  3. Alcan Rider

    Alcan Rider Frozen Fossil

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    If you'll never ride farther north than Phoenix, then warmer gloves will suffice. But if you might find yourself getting up into the mountains in spring and fall, going over high passes and down into warm valleys, you will probably find heated grips are the ideal choice.

    Living where I sometimes find both heated grips and heated gloves to be necessary, there has been plenty of opportunity to try them both individually as well as together. That includes riding all over the U. S. as well as in Alaska and Canada. Your gloves have the least insulation in the palms, which are in the closest contact with the handgrips. In cold weather, the handlebars will suck heat away from your hands as they, the handlebars, are cooled in the airstream. Conversely, with the fairly tight grip you maintain on the handgrips, heat is efficiently transferred to your hands through that same "inadequate" insulation. While I carry well-insulated gloves on every ride, the heated grips that I have installed on every one of my bikes are the real live savers when it starts getting chilly.
    #3
  4. HAYVIATOR

    HAYVIATOR Don't be me dude.

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    Grips. I have both and the gloves work great but are a hassle to connect for quick trips while the grips never need to be set higher than 3 of 4 on their power setting and you can still use thinner more tactile gloves.
    #4
  5. Ditch

    Ditch Long timer

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    can always add some hippo hands or similar (not hard to make from scratch) to the bars.

    Here in Albquerque it gets a bit colder. I have Gerbing T5 gloves and heated grips. Depending on how cold it gets I sometimes use both, but can barely feel the grips through the heavy gloves.
    #5
  6. eddie bolted

    eddie bolted BOING!!!

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    I wear TOURMASTER WINTER ELITE gloves,warm to the low 30's even warmer with a liner.
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  7. spoon

    spoon Rubber's gone!

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    I have heated gloves and grips and hippo hands. But down to the lower 40's some plain old winter gloves work for a short ride. Keep the gloves in the house so they are warm when you start. A rain cover over the glove to keep the wind off will help a lot.
    #7
  8. NesquikNinja

    NesquikNinja Been here awhile

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    How cold does it get there?

    Down into the 40s with heated grips and the nifty things you see on my bars below I could still wear by ventilated race gloves. My new honda doesnt have heated grips, so I have some winter gloves combined with those and I rode for about an hour today in about 25 degrees. Beyond that or just to stay more comfy, the aforementioned combo with heated glove liners added in.

    [​IMG]
    #8
  9. Hikertrash

    Hikertrash Long timer

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    My fingertips still get cold with my heated grips and I'm in Phoenix too. I used my W&S heated grips for the first time Monday and while they worked out great, they're too much of a hassle and bulky for just commuting. I tried some BMW Winter gloves last winter and they worked out ok, but I think those hippo hand things might work best with a set of heated grips added.
    #9
  10. lightfox

    lightfox Adventurer

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    I want a solution that will take to me to 35 to 40 F for a 15 minute ride. And 50F for a 45 minute ride. If I need to go on a colder or longer ride, then I will get the hippo hands.

    I've never used heated grips before, but I would rather be warm in race gloves (with heated grips) than warm in winter gloves because of the bulk. With that said, being warm comes first. Will I be warm enough with the heated grips?


    How long can you ride before your fingertips get cold? What kind of gloves are you using?
    #10
  11. markjenn

    markjenn Long timer

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    My experience is that heated grips allow you to run thinner gloves than you normally would, but except for very moderate temps, they can't be considered a complete substitute for cold-weather gloves. Once the temps drop down below 45 or so, you can't heat the grips enough to not require some kind of insulation on the back of your hand. And whatever insulation you do need also insulates you from the heat of the grips. You run into rapidly diminishing returns where the grip just can't do the whole job.

    My advice if you can afford only one solution is to get warmer gloves.

    - Mark
    #11
  12. duck

    duck Banned

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    #12
  13. Hikertrash

    Hikertrash Long timer

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    I wear Revit Comet gloves pretty much year round. Theyre perforated in the fingers for warm weather riding, but my fingertips would get cold even when wearing BMW Winter gloves. My fingertips get cold probably after about 10 minutes of riding on the highway. It's not unbearable though. I rode 3 hours like that on Monday because I didn't like the bulkiness of the heated winter gloves I have. I don't know what kind of bike you have, but mine has handguards that also may help a bit with deflecting cold air over my hands.
    #13
  14. terryckdbf

    terryckdbf Pickles

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  15. bmac

    bmac Been here awhile

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    This is an easy question. Heated Grips are the best choice and offer far more versatility. They are relatively cheap, easy to install, and offer adjustment to changing conditions with the flick of a switch.

    Even though heated grips should come first, a good assortment of different gloves has its advantages. Gloves that have some insulation on the top side of the hand can dramatically help with comfort.

    Heated grips and an extra pair of gloves will still be cheaper than buying heated gloves.
    #15
  16. 74C5

    74C5 Long timer

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    I know there are some who push "you have to have these grips" and such. B.S. The only thing you need Oxford wise is a pair of shoes to get laughed at when you wear them on your bike.

    Don't overthink it. $30 bucks, maybe less, maybe more. Go to ebay motors and look for a grip kit that uses the elements under your existing grips....if you can get them off without cutting. Install the sticky back heaters, put grips back on. Pretty simple. Left will be a bit cooler than the right due to no plastic twist grip insulating the heater but, TADT (they all do that). To not have the left side cooler, you change the left bar by gluing a twist grip onto the bar, grip heater on the plastic, and then putting on two right side grips for each side. Gets a bit more expensive that way.

    For 10 to 15 minute duration commute, most people will find that you're good with just grip heaters unless it is just too cold for them....everyone is different though. Longer durations bring in other factors that are more individual and bike/environment dependent. As the last guy said, you can always double dip and add warmer gloves to make it easier to take a leak when you get to work.
    #16
  17. duck

    duck Banned

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    Symtec heated grips (the motorcycle version of them) have different heating elements for the throttle and clutch sides to accommodate the difference between the plastic throttle tube on the right and a metal handlebar on the left. To lessen the heat sink effect on the left you can wrap the handlebar with a layer or two of electrical tape before installing the heated grip element.
    #17
  18. acejones

    acejones Long timer

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    I wouldn't want to own a bike without heated grips
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  19. Snarky

    Snarky Vodka Infused.

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    Heated grips are awesome. I love mine. Really takes the edge off the cold.

    My second favorite solution to the cold is glove liners.

    Also handle bar guards if you dont have them.

    I've found that a lot of gloves use the same insulation, and it doesn't really help me much, probably due to bad circulation.

    I've yet to try heated gloves though.
    #19
  20. lightfox

    lightfox Adventurer

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    Cool, I'll look into it. How big of a difference does it make? I.e. 45 F without glove liner feels like 40 F with a liner, or is it less of a difference?

    I am leaning towards the winter gloves now because of issue of warming the top of your hand. My bike doesn't block any wind to the handlebars. I saw one suggestion for more affordable gloves. Are there any other good deals?

    duck posted these cortech gloves which look 95% the same as these bilt gloves that I tried on in a store and hated how stiff they felt.

    I'm not sure what you suggest I should look for on ebay motors, but yes I do see the heaters that have just a thin heating element. They seem to just come with an on/off switch. I think it would be a lot better to have a few levels of heat to choose from. Can I add a controller to these? Also, how difficult is the installation from start to finish? I've never worked on a bike before.
    #20