ABR’s resident expert of all things two-wheeled answers your questions
We’ve just had our first frosts of this winter near us, and I intend to do a bit more biking throughout the colder months this year so, it’s time to prepare the bike for comfort and rideability. I’m off to Motorcycle Live at the NEC soon with my wife, who has agreed that I can choose my own Christmas gifts this year. I have an idea of what I want, but a few suggestions would help.
You can’t beat a day at a bike show when there’s a few quid in the kitty to spend. My first suggestion would be clothing. Obviously, a good waterproof riding suit, boots and good quality waterproof socks. For your hands, it’s worth looking into getting yourself a pair of silk inner gloves, they’re an extra layer that’ll help keep your digits warm, and they make it easier to remove and replace your gloves on wet days.
If you plan to ride throughout winter, you’d be wise to invest in some merino wool base layers. These keep the warmth in excellently, are comfortable to wear, can go days without being washed before they start to pong, and are a naturally breathable product.
A heated waistcoat will keep you toasty, it’s important to keep your core body temperature up in extreme cold as it stops the body drawing the blood supply from your extremities such as hands and feet and making them numb. I’ve never tried one personally, but I have pals who rave about them.
A ski mask or simple neck tube is worth more than their modest price tags suggest as they’ll help keep the chill off your neck and chin. Also, along with a Pinlock insert, get some anti-mist for the visor, I also use a product on the outer visor that helps the rain just roll off, there are quite a few about. They’re handy to treat spectacles if you’re a wearer. So, that’s you covered now how about the bike?
Extra lighting for the dingy days has to be a consideration. There are some great LED products about now, LEDs don’t draw much current but give a fantastic output of light. Again, there are many on the market, just choose what appeals to you and your bike.
I’m assuming here that you already have heated grips, if not why not? They really should be standard on adventure bikes. I rode a Triumph Explorer XCA that had heated seats a couple of winters ago, it was pure luxury.
Fortunately, there are quite a few aftermarket options now in that department. If your tyres are getting a bit worn, now’s the time to replace them for the extra grip only new tyres can give. The choice is yours and there are too many good options out there now for me to suggest a particular brand.
I’m sure you’ll find many other things to spend on at the show… like food, drink and parking… Ouch! Have a great day and don’t forget to visit the ABR stand (we’re at stand 2C44).
Got something to ask Dave?
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