Winter jacket suggestions (and other gear). Need some expertise.

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by crazyapple92, Jan 5, 2013.

  1. crazyapple92

    crazyapple92 Been here awhile

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    It's cold. I think everyone's noticed by now... except you lucky sons of guns in Hawaii.

    I have no cold weather gear. I own a summer jacket, which is great through most of spring and fall (with some layering) and amazing in the summer, but it's worthless below high 50's.

    So I've been looking into proper winter jackets, or four season jackets, call them what you will. In a perfect world I'd pick up an Icon Patrol and be done with it. But I'm looking to stay around the $200 mark. And less is never a bad thing. :D

    I'd like to hear some real world experiences and suggestions. What I'm leaning towards right now is this:
    http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com/14/67/906/35143/ITEM/Fly-Racing-Terra-Trek-Jacket.aspx

    I'd love to hear from something about these:
    http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com/11/51/662/46679/ITEM/Scott-350-Jacket.aspx
    http://www.motorcycle-superstore.com/14/67/906/35143/ITEM/Fly-Racing-Terra-Trek-Jacket.aspx

    I'm asking about the Bilt gear deal in the relevant thread but don't hesitate to tell me all about it here.

    And I'm about to make a run to Wallyworld to pick up some insulated coveralls. They're dirt cheap and will help at the very least. I'm sure many people here have tried them out, let me know how they do.

    Most of this gear has probably already been reviewed here, I know that, but you guys seems to skip over some important information for winter noobs like me; IS IT WARM!?

    That's what I care about the most, I've barely rode the last few months and I'm a little stir crazy by now. I need something to let me blast around no matter how cold it is.

    I'm open to suggestions too. Just keep the price range in mind.
    #1
  2. OaklandStrom

    OaklandStrom Long timer

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    I don't know anything about those jackets, but I'm happy with my Cortech.

    However, heated gear will change how you ride, if you bike (alternator) can handle it. When I ride in temps in the 40s, I wear a long sleeve tshirt, a heated liner and my jacket. If it gets colder, I'll wear a synthetic turtleneck a tshirt, heated liner and my jacket.

    I remember the night I decided to buy heated gear. I was wearing lots of layers, including a thick hoodie under my jacket. I couldn't move as easily as I wanted, and I had a difficult time turning my head enough to see if there was a car in the lane next to me. Part of my ride was a busy, 5 lane bridge over 5 miles long. I just didn't feel safe. The next day I contacted Rose (here somewhere) who sells Warm N Safe, and bought a jacket. I love it.
    #2
  3. Charrito

    Charrito Been here awhile

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    I just recently purchased a FirstGear Jaunt for $99 and am very happy with it. I also use their heated liner if it gets cold enough. And ski gloves.
    #3
  4. crazyapple92

    crazyapple92 Been here awhile

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    Thanks for the replies guys. My bike has no extra electrical grunt as far as I know. I don't have a 12V socket but from what I've read my bike (KLX 250) makes enough juice to run the bike and a tiny bit extra, but not really enough to do anything with.

    Heated gear is probably not an option for me, which is too bad because it sounds toasty and wonderful.

    I went and grabbed some coveralls earlier. Went for a ride with them and :muutt. No dice! I figured something made to work in would let you move around pretty well. But they were terrible, constricting in all the wrong places. Couldn't turn my head, couldn't move around on the bike, it was a mess and it nearly made me go down a bunch of times. They were pretty warm up to 45 MPH though, I'll give them that. If you own a cruiser and just putt around then they might be worth it. But for off road riding or aggressive on road riding they're a hospital bill waiting to happen.

    I'll be returning them later tonight.


    Oakland, what kind of Cortech jacket is it?

    Charrito, the Jaunt seems pretty good, I'd like a something with a little more in the looks department though. But half my expected price is nice... I might break down and get it just because it's cheap but for now I'd like to keep exploring my options.

    I think Spidi is supposed to be pretty high end stuff right? Anyone know anything about this?
    http://www.revzilla.com/motorcycle/spidi-voyager-textile-jacket
    #4
  5. frog13

    frog13 Long timer

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    I was in the same $200ish boat myself.....but then researched and noticed usually those garments do not protect well....if at all.I worked extra overtime and went with Motoport/Cycleport.....great stuff!.
    #5
  6. 568V8

    568V8 Ontario Vstrommer

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    Shop in a hiking store for some thin Merino wool long johns and an undershirt.Something thin and not bulky but has amazing warmth; and it's not itchy ( I personally hate all other wool products).
    Any inexpensive sweatwicking gear will at least keep a dry layer against you skin and will be the best improvement for limited money. Layering is much better than bulky overall clothes.
    #6
  7. crazyapple92

    crazyapple92 Been here awhile

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    Agreed, bulky overall type things are bad news. I'd seen a bunch of people riding around with them and the Garden Snake mentioned he made due with them in the past so I figured I'd give it a shot.

    Layering is what I'd been doing so far but like I said, with a summer mesh jacket it really only works down to around 55. Now none of my layers were wind proof, I don't own anything warm, tight, and good.

    I've been looking into somethings. And it seems like I've reduced my price range even more! Haha. I can see where you're coming from Frog but honestly my jacket was right at $200 and it's frankly awesome, great armor, tough material, good construction. I have no doubt that it will protect me in all but the craziest pavement surfing. In a perfect world we'd all be wearing full leather track suits all the time but it's just not the case.

    I'll throw up a little list of what I'm looking at right now, let me know what you guys think:
    http://www.cyclegear.com/eng/produc...series_2_textile_motorcycle_jacket/web1007386 (I'd prefer the Jaunt but I'm having trouble finding it for $99. Closest I could see was around $130. If someone can give me a link... it has the huge advantage of not being ugly brown!)
    http://www.cyclegear.com/eng/product/freeze_out_base_layer_long_johns/web1008475
    http://www.cyclegear.com/eng/product/freeze_out_base_layer_long_sleeve_top/web1008476
    http://www.cyclegear.com/eng/product/sedici_corsa_leather_motorcycle_gloves/web1006286

    I'm really loving cyclegear right now, dirt cheap, off brand gear has a special place in my heart (wallet). I'm even looking at some boots from $30-$70. :D
    #7
  8. '05Train

    '05Train Mind is not for rent

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    Out of your price range by a bit, but I don't think you'll find a better jacket for the money than the $360 Teknic Freeway. It's waterproof, has good quality armor including a CE-rated back protector, and vents well enough to use up into the low 80s. With the liner in and a good base layer, you'll be fine down into the 30s. It's comfortable as all get-out, and it's got a ton of pockets for your stuff.

    I've had mine for a year and ridden in everything from early summer to the dead of winter, to a couple of frog-stranglng thunderstorms....It's performed beautifully in whatever conditions I've thrown at it.
    #8
  9. levain

    levain STILL Jim Williams

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    What size are you? If you're a small boy, looking for a cold weather jacket exclusively, and can stretch a couple bucks, you're not going to find anything on earth better than the BMG Discovery. Really. It is that good. And waterproof. And warm. Don't wear it above 65. You'll cook. Below that, and you found bliss. It doesn't get any better. Don't trust me?

    Here's the deal for the small boy.

    Full price if that's what it takes.

    If that is still too much, I'd stay away from the Bilt, Cycle Gear junk. Look used. You could get a Darien for $250 with a liner if you're not too picky. The heated jacket option is a no brainer, but you'll be into it for $300 min. with a controller, and it still won't be enough without a windproof layer. The first line of defense should always be keeping the wind out, then you can worry about keeping the heat in.
    #9
  10. HighwayChile

    HighwayChile greetings from Wa state

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    the new jaunt s worth a look but will need layers underneath
    Firstgear Jaunt T2 Jacket

    also electric gear, boot liners dont take much juice, check what your bike has exactly, can you replace bulbs with led that use lower watts? a electric vest on low doesnt take a lot of juice also you can switch them off, turn it on warm up, them off. got one of those neck cuff things? skiers use them
    #10
  11. crazyapple92

    crazyapple92 Been here awhile

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    I don't have exact numbers on the electric output on the bike. But from what I remember someone with a S model (same bike, different trim) had a heated vest, if he turned it on high the bike wasn't getting enough juice to run. And I don't want to fiddle with battery operated stuff, that sounds like a nightmare!

    Electric stuff is expensive, I'd have to add on a socket, buy a vest, buy whatever other stuff I needed, and then buy a good winter jacket on top of all that. And I'd probably have to beef up my electrical system.

    As much as I'd like to do that I simply can't. I'm not just looking to be cheap here, I honestly can't afford much more than $200. And now I'm realizing I'll have to shovel some dough out for good base layers and gloves too.

    I don't know much about Bilt and after some poking around I don't think I'll take a chance with their jackets. But I know Sedici is decent stuff so I can buy their gloves with some peace of mind.

    I don't want my bike to sit neglected all winter in the shed. I'm thinking about picking up a windproof base layer, something super warm, and maybe adding a few more layers to that. And putting my summer jacket on top of all that. Maybe I'll be good down to low 40's that way. If I can ride in that weather then I'll be able to scrape by this winter.

    I'm kind of irritated with Cyclegear right now. They're saying it would take 2 days just to get the stuff out of their warehouse. And for the Tourmaster jacket it could be up to 5 days... really? You go and grab it, put it in a box, slap a label on it, and send it on it's way. How does that take 3 to 5 days?
    #11
  12. HighwayChile

    HighwayChile greetings from Wa state

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    look for used gear, here and local craigslist and other local sites, you'll spend way less
    #12
  13. OaklandStrom

    OaklandStrom Long timer

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    If you don't have enough juice to run electrics, then go for a good warm jacket.

    A "Cortech Advanced 3/4". I love it, and have been wearing it for years. I actually bought a second one, and Advanced Sport because I thought I might wear a slightly different one from time to time. It's been hanging in the closet and never worn (possibly once).

    Here's a review:
    http://www.webbikeworld.com/r3/tourmaster-jacket/tourmaster-advanced-jacket.htm

    If interested, I'd be happy to sell it. It's a medium, and I'm 6' 2" and 180 pounds.
    #13
  14. crazyapple92

    crazyapple92 Been here awhile

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    I'm kind of iffy on used gear... That being said I do keep an eye out on CL. The selection is pretty thin on CL, I didn't know there was a section for that here though? I'll have to poke around!

    Oakland: I'm not usually a fan of used gear, it kind of skeeves me out to be honest. :lol3 But throw me some pictures and a price, I happen to be a medium as well. Hows the fit with some layers underneath? Don't want to get your hopes up here, but I don't want to shoot it down without looking into it either.

    How warm are solid leather jackets? No quilted liners or anything like that, just straight leather. I'm looking around motorcyclegear.com (newenough) and finding some :eek1 deals. It's too bad about some of these jackets, pretty neat looking but with quilted vest liners... I like my arms, they're good for braking and clutching... and steering. I think I'll go the smart route and not let them freeze and fall off. :D
    #14
  15. pdxmotorhead

    pdxmotorhead Been here awhile

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    I have a Filson tin coat that works good for keeping off wind, It does not do anything else...
    But with my wool coat under it keeps me warm in sub zero numbers...

    So the right layers will do the trick..

    Dave
    #15
  16. justcountry04

    justcountry04 Been here awhile

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    don't be so scared of used gear, I've completly stocked all my gear by buying used from CL and on here and have saved hundreds!!! I have some first gear pants with removeable liners and they are good down to around 35 degrees with some jeans on. as far as jackets I also have purchased a first gear Kathmandu jacket with liner and several other joe rocket stuff. Its all about layering. All the gear Ive bought used was very clean and odor free. I think you just have to look close at the pics of it and talk to the owner asking why they are selling and what they liked or didn't. Alot of times they just dont ride anymore. BTW, strait leather jackets suck, I had one and gave it to a buddy of mine cuz I froze in it. Botton line, Its easier to buy used first till you find what you like and dont like in materials, brands, and such without spending hundreds and finding it doesnt fit your needs!
    #16
  17. Mr_Gone

    Mr_Gone The Lejund!

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    I know a lot of guys who have the Firstgear Kilimanjaro jacket. It's waterproof for the rain; it has a liner for colder temps; it has pretty good venting for warmer temps. You can find them for around $250 new, and less for a used one, which I know is a little higher than your price range

    Seriously, I know A LOT of road warriors who have the Kilimanjaro and wouldn't trade their jacket for a top-of-the-line $1300 Rukka.

    I think Motorcycle Superstore has them for $255, and someone here usually has a 10% off coupon, which puts the price around $225. IMHO, you can't beat that.
    #17
  18. crazyapple92

    crazyapple92 Been here awhile

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    Some friend you are! :rofl

    It's kind of silly to be bothered by used gear, I know it. And ADV types especially usually take good care of their stuff and are a pretty decent bunch... Though you guys might not shower quite as much as you should. :lol3

    All kidding aside it's just one of those things. I can get over it if the price is right though. I poked around the gear section here and found that things weren't as cheap as I was hoping for, and there wasn't much that would work for me anyways. I don't plan on trying things out and swapping them out, I want to get something warm and cheap to get me through the winter, so long as it does that it could have pink tassels for all I care.
    #18
  19. JR356

    JR356 Long timer

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    Not sure if they still have them,but CycleGear stores were closing out brown only TourMaster Transition 2 jackets for $99-109.
    Good quality budget jacket with reasonable venting and the waterproof layer is built into the jacket,so you dont have to stop to put on rain gear or put in the rain liner.
    Has quilted removable thermal liner.

    JR356
    #19
  20. Toscana1

    Toscana1 Younger by the ride.

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    Back up a bit. You're in Arkansas right.
    .How cold will it get where you'll be riding? I'm sure there's a difference between Arkansas cold (even in the Ozark's) and upper Midwest or Rocky Mountain cold. I do fine into the 20s with my Tourmaster, liner and long sleeved polypropylene.
    #20