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Has anyone got any experience with getting some of that engine heat up around the rider for those cold night rides? Coveralls are fine, but if some heat could be had it might make the ride a bit nicer. Possibly a new center cover with slots cut in it? Any thoughts?

Thanks.
 

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Long, long ago, in a thread far, far away...someone mentioned sort of a fabric thing that covered the sides of a scooter's floorboards, and over your lap. You sort of sat inside it. I think it was a European thing, but I forget what it was called. Anyone remember?

How about those chemical hot packs? They're pretty cheap for an occasional cool-weather ride. Wear long boxer-briefs and put one under each thigh. Or get a pair of Canadian Mountie pants, and put one in each hip. ;)
 

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I've tried one of those European aprons on a 400, and didn't like it. It did the job, but shut me off from all the dash storage cubbyholes (including my garage-door-opener). It was also a PITA to put on and take off.

While I am a fan of chemical packs, and use them sometimes in my shoes on cold nights, I am an even bigger supporter of electrically-heated clothing. While some prefer other brands, my choice is Gerbing's (at http://www.gerbing.com/ ). I wear a heated jacket liner and gloves under my usual jacket along with chaps, and I ride in comfort down to about forty degrees. I think I could be comfy even colder, but have not tried it. My biggest problem is usually a fogging helmet visor.

I think that electric clothing is wonderfully cheap compared to letting an expensive scoot sit and collect dust for months at a time, or compared to commuting in a cage all winter. I encourage you to use the site's search function (keyword Gerbing; the brand seems to come up in practically every discussion of cold-weather riding) to learn a lot more on the subject.

And, if you go this route, I also encourage you spend the bucks and get a dual variable controller. ;)
 

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If you want to heat yourselve then you really have only one choice. Electric clothing. An electric vest is probably the cheapest and best bang for your buck. If you keep the center of your body warm, your comfort level goes way up. Hands, legs and head?? I don't know if these areas really need to be heated. A heated vest won't draw too much from the charging system and usually the "simple" garment (not the BMW or other fancy designer type vest cut it...I know I bought them and they work like...sh__t). Here in Canada, many dealers carry a vest priced around $100 that can be attached to a switch and even a controller. You are best to wear it close to the body. So the vest should fit snuggly with just a "t" shirt between you and the vest. Just my two cents.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Sounds like the place to start. Thanks for the input.
 

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My wife and I have electric gloves, vests, and chaps - all Widder. We've heard good things about Gerbing, but never actually seen them in a shop. OTOH, we found our Widder stuff on sale for 1/2 off in a bike shop in Grand Junction, CO a few years ago!

I've worn the vest and gloves for the past 4 winters with very good success. I wore the chaps the first winter and discovered that the were overkill for me. Most of my sub-40 F riding is very short duration, 60 miles or less, and I really don't need the heat to my legs for that short period. I also find that the gloves are overkill for me except for rides of over 1/2 hour - I just wear a pair of thinsulite lined gloves most of the time, even for the trip to Flagstaff, where the temp drops 10 degrees.

My wife, OTOH, has typically poor peripheral circulation and needs the electric gloves when the ambient temp drops below about 55F. Even so, she seldom needs the chaps. We're blessed, in Winslow, to have 4 real seasons, but very little snow or ice. We can, therefore, ride pretty much every day - at least around town and in the immediate environs - as long as we avoid hypothermia.

I am pleased to hear that getting heat out of the Burgman is so difficult, considering that most of my longer trips include passage into or through the Phoenix area. There is not much worse than stop and go traffic in the Valley of the Sun on a high-output heater!

God bless,
 

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I like heated handgrips more than the vests or gloves, because I don't have to plug them in. They don't do as well keeping me warm - but they are more convenient. A larger windshield, and some of the edging for around the lower fairing will give you a larger air bubble out of the cold wind - and they are available on the aftermarket...

I thought about riding with the engine acces cover off of my 650 on the cold days - but also suggested Suzuki sell a different cover (louvered or something) to where we could go back and forth. Whe waste that engine heat? Some touring bikes have (or at least used to have) vents that you can open to direct engine heat onto the rider - they would come in handy on a Burgman. I think right up behind the radiator would be best. Has anyone drilled any holes in there? I wonder how hard it would be to drill holes and be able to plug them when not wanted? Maybe drill them the size of some of the plastic rivets?
 

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Like some of the others, I'd recommend an elecric jacket and gloves. I have two of the Gerbings jackets and they work great.
A jacket and gloves kept me warm and comfortable last winter in temps as low as the low 20's. I got the electronic thermostat with separate controls for the jacket and the gloves. Just set 'em to a comfortable setting and forget it.
They're not cheap but I consider them a good investment because they actually do the job and should last for a number of years.

Don
 

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I could be wrong, but I'd strongly suspect that any air you'd vent out of the engine compartment cover would blow away once you had reached even a moderate cruising speed. I think very little of it would reach your body unless you were stopped. On an unfaired motorcycle, the heat from the engine can be miserable when stopped at a traffic light on a hot day. But once you are moving again, the heat quickly dissipates, even at "around town" speeds.

I agree with the suggestions for using electrically heated garments (I currently use a Gerbing vest and gloves). They work effectively at any speed, and the temperature level is thermostatically controlled. I have never had to turn my Gerbing thermostat all the way up.
 

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Layers. I've been out on the coldest days wearing:

- at least two pairs of thick socks under boots.
- Long johns, sometimes two sets, under the jeans. jeans tuck into boots.
- Wool gloves under long leather motorcycle gloves.
- Undershirt, insulated shirt, sweater under the coat.
- Thick leather motorcycle jacket. It buttons AND zips up the wide overlapping front. Cuffs snap under the long gloves. Collar raises and zips/snaps to completely cover my neck. Wool ski mask under helmet.

Most scooters provide good wind protection. Biggest problem is if your shield fogs up. Usually fixed by letting in a little air. I'm usually sweating a bit wearing all this on 0 degree F days.

If you're heading to work or someplace heated where all the layers will be too much, plan on your inside layer being your work clothes. Strip off the outside layers for work, then put them back on for the ride home.

Hope that helps.
 

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Again, I suggest a simple electric vest. Wear it close to your body with just a "T" shirt underneath. This maximizes the heat transfer and yields the best comfort. I have never tried electric pants or gloves but frankly I think they are a waste of money. There are lots of fancy stuff and expensive jackets that are lined with electric heating wires but the "simple" vest does the trick. In fact, I remember these things being $100 twenty years ago and there are still priced in that range. They come in black or dark blue with a wire protruding out of one of the pockets. Wiring it up is easy.
 

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Winter specific clothing is good. Heated garmets are great, as are the basic bike specific windproof clothing, boot covers, full face masks, knee/shin covers. Heated grips are just too good not to have, adn are useful almost all year round. But remember, when you are cold your tyres are too. It's sometimes good not to make yourself too comfortable when out riding at -20C if it means that you lose it on a bend because your tyres aren't as warm as you feel, and are not keeping enough heat in to grip effectively...
 

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4DThinker said:
Layers. I've been out on the coldest days wearing:

- at least two pairs of thick socks under boots.
- Long johns, sometimes two sets, under the jeans. jeans tuck into boots.
- Wool gloves under long leather motorcycle gloves.
- Undershirt, insulated shirt, sweater under the coat.
- Thick leather motorcycle jacket. It buttons AND zips up the wide overlapping front. Cuffs snap under the long gloves. Collar raises and zips/snaps to completely cover my neck. Wool ski mask under helmet..
Yeah, but it's so nice at a meal stop to just pull two plugs from the base of the jacket and walk into the restaurant and just take your electric gloves and jacket off and you're dressed like everyone else (at least the normal customers). Especially nice for a QUICK bathroom stop.

Don :D
 

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I suppose I could don my snowmobile riding gear- heavy nylon jacket, bibs, mittens, helmet with anti fog double shield, sorrel boots.
That keeps me warm down to sub zero temperatures. Awful bulky, but very warm.
 
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