Winter Riding

Discussion in 'Central – From Da Nort Woods to the Plane States' started by toadl, Dec 6, 2012.

  1. toadl

    toadl Long timer

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    Who's still riding? What are your tips for riding in the winter and in the snow? What do you do to prep your bike for winter riding? Here's some pics from this last weekend and my bike that I like to ride to work on.

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    In the past I've only ridden to work when the temperature is above freezing. Just because I figure riding a motorcycle is dangerous enough without adding ice, but I'm starting to rethink that. I've added an LED running light to my DRZ so I should have enough power to run a heated vest and heated grips.

    Also, while ridding through the woods this weekend, temps were in the 30's, I was pretty hot and sweaty. I guess I'm wondering now why more people aren't riding in the winter.
    #1
  2. Dan888

    Dan888 Been here awhile

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    A guy I work with rides in on his DRZ all winter, as long as it isn't snowing or icy out. He has all the gear, hippo hands and heated vest grips and visor.
    #2
  3. Utah Bones

    Utah Bones Gas X ready!

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    My tip is get a jeep...:rofl
    #3
  4. playharder

    playharder Just a rider

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    Toadl,

    I have been riding my KLR on a daily basis for the last several years now. For winter riding, I stud up a set on Conti TKC-80s with the screw in studs available through Aerostich. For warmth, I add a set of Hippo-Hands. They work well with the heated hand grips and a plug in heated vest. For corrosion protection (there really isn't any good protection) I spray everything with a good dose of ACF-50. There are several other tips to pick up over the miles, but that should get you safely down the road for a little bit.

    John
    #4
  5. 2whlrcr

    2whlrcr gooligan

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    We rode in t shirts last weekend, but there are colder days ahead...

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    #5
  6. Skinner

    Skinner Mr.KTM

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    [​IMG]
    #6
  7. SloMo228

    SloMo228 World Class Cheapass

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    I'm still riding my GL1000 to work some of the time - it hasn't snowed here yet, but I've left the bike in the garage for the last few days of rainy 38 degree weather. I don't think I want to try riding in the snow on a 580lb bike with street tires, but I will get it out on clear days where I don't expect any ice.
    #7
  8. SloMo228

    SloMo228 World Class Cheapass

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    That looks interesting. Does it work?
    #8
  9. toadl

    toadl Long timer

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    How long do the studes from Aerostich last? How much of an improvement are they?
    #9
  10. Skinner

    Skinner Mr.KTM

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    Yes, It works very good. You ride on your tires but when you hit some snow the ski, on springs flips down and you glide on that instead of going over the bars. I've been as deep as 2 1/2 feet of snow. It's a little tough on the little bike as the snow and drag takes up a lot of power, so I put it on the 525 these days.

    As an aside, I tried it out in the summer and it is a lot of fun out crashing timber also. Large brush piles will skim over them, and soft muddy areas. Also work on water crossings the ski skim the surface.
    #10
  11. TABR

    TABR Lost Again

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    Just ride something you can fix on the cheap. If Minnesota allows studs go for, it in my younger days I rode year round but I don't bounce like I used to. I just washed and put the bike away for today, cold and snow coming Sunday.
    #11
  12. 2whlrcr

    2whlrcr gooligan

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    I'm going to install heated grips on my new ride tomorrow.
    #12
  13. toadl

    toadl Long timer

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    I origanally had my heated grips installed with the wiring tied into the bikes wiring harness. A couple weeks ago I hooked the grips directly to the battery (with a fuse of course), man what an improvement:clap. Nothing changed except the wiring.
    #13
  14. 2whlrcr

    2whlrcr gooligan

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    Sounds like a good idea. What amp fuse?
    #14
  15. randyo

    randyo Long timer

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    reports I've seen, studded tires wear slower than unstudded tires

    can't say for sure about the Aerostitch self taping studs, I'm running standard 10mm automotive studs. I drilled 9mm holes in the knobs on a set of Karoo Ts and inserted the studs with a pneumatic stud gun

    first 50 miles or so was sketchy why studs were getting seated in, after that it doesn't feel like ya got a flat tire anymore

    I have 3 winter seasons on my front studded Karoo T (about 15,000 miles) with still 40% tread left and have lost no studs

    rear didn't fare as well, after one season, I was down to 20% tread and lost 1 or 2 studs, didn't replace the rear with another, experimented with the darkside instead, an experiment that was successful beyond my wildest expectations, over 25k on the unstudded General Altimax Arctic and still 40% tread and it's awesome in winter snow/sleet/freezing rain riding conditions
    #15
  16. toadl

    toadl Long timer

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    My grips came with a 5 amp fuse so I used that as close as I could to the battery.
    #16
  17. toadl

    toadl Long timer

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    Using a car tire, that is the darkside, but I admire your.... um.
    #17
  18. playharder

    playharder Just a rider

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    toadl,

    I do not know for sure what mileage I will ultimately get from the aerostich studs (I probably average about 2k to 3k per year) and this is my fourth year with them. I would guess in the 10 to 20k mile range. The biggest problem is removing them in the spring (especially the back, which get a bit deformed). I have been experimenting with using the front studs in the rear tire and they do seem to be working well. I will probably end up just using the front studs on both wheel in the future.

    Just got back from a second trip to the grocery store in today's storm (five miles or so) and all was well.

    John
    #18
  19. playharder

    playharder Just a rider

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    randyo,

    I would love to install regular car tire studs, but I cannot locate a gun for anything close to cheap in this area as studded tires are illegal in Minnesota. I have a couple of leads to track down for older equipment (studded tires were legal in Minnesota until 1974 or so) but have not been successful.

    If I am not mistaken, there is a m/c dealership out in Massachusetts someplace that sells m/c tires that they stud up themselves with car tire studs. I have been tempted.

    John
    #19
  20. toadl

    toadl Long timer

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    Wow, they seem to be holding up well (ya, that was meant to have a double meaning).
    #20