Jump to content

Lookin for cold weather gear


Recommended Posts

I ride now in mid 30's weather somewhat comfortable, looking for some warmer gear. Can anyone recomend a heated vest(brand/price) or other gear for keepin the chill off? My feet get a bit cold also. Not much extra meat on my bones, and I'm not gettin any younger-56. I have heated grips and seat, just wondered what is out there I haven't tried. I would like to commute as often as possible, 44 mile round trip. Thanks in advance.

Link to comment




Love my jacket/pants/sox/gloves. Have been down in low temps and hideous weather at altitude. NOTHING, I mean nothing beats heated gear when the weather is cold wet and crappy.

Link to comment

Would suggest a full heated jacket liner,rather than just a vest.You want warm arms/hands.


The two top brands are Gerbings and Warm n Safe.


Warm n Safe has a discount for various MC groups,including this one.

They also are the manufacturer for FirstGear heated gear and are,or used to be the mfg.for Powerlet heated gear.


Suggest you go to WnS and Gerbing websites and read up on the products.


Couple places sell new old stock prior versions of this gear a discounts,if you want a bargain.


Gerbings seems to be available at a number of BMW dealers,so check there.


Remember you need a controller,for these to function well,so factor that into your budget.

WnS has a trick remote controller,that cuts down on wire clutter.


Snug fit is the key to either a vest or jacket liner,to allow maximim heat transfer,just a light layer between you and the electrics.

You need a good insulating over layer to keep heat in.

I recommend something with Goretex Windstop fleece or similar.



Link to comment

look at Aerostich air advantage liner. I do like mine. you can inflate it to fit snug when needed.


also for cold hands, Hippo Hands, ugly but useful. couple them with heated grips and your cold hands will thank you. also very nice in the rain. I don't leave home without them.

Link to comment
Nice n Easy Rider
Would suggest a full heated jacket liner,rather than just a vest.You want warm arms/hands.


The two top brands are Gerbings and Warm n Safe.

+1 on the jacket liner. I had considered a vest but decided that my arms are exposed enough that I wanted some heat there as well. I have a 20 mile round trip commute and the Gerbings jacket liner worked great last week at 16F. I control it with a Warm & Safe remote controller which eliminates having to do any wiring on my dash.

Link to comment

As others have said, an electric jacket liner is much preferred over a vest. I have a new Gerbings liner that is terrific (early Christmas gift), and I'll put their gloves on next year's list.


Outside of electrics, there are tons of great brands out there to layer. I love Techwick products from Eastern Mountain Sports (EMS) and Under Armour. Unless you work outdoors, in which case layering could be better than electrics, it's a pain to change all that stuff before starting work and then heading home. Another huge advantage of electrics is that you control the heat so you won't overheat or sweat if the weather warms up.


I've found that the Aerostich triple digit rain gloves work great when put over good winter riding gloves. They shut out the wind, allow plenty of grip heat through, pack real small, and on really cold days I just throw in a chemical hand warmer for the back of my hand. Good to very low temps. They're also great for their intended purpose, and that's a good rain overglove. You can find them HERE Great bang for the buck IMO..

Link to comment

22 miles each way won't usually put you at high risk for hypothermia.

as suggested, high tech base layer (I prefer silk turtle neck, packs very small), Gerbings jacket liner and gloves.

I cover the gloves with Aerostitch Triple Digts rain mitts which keeps me warm into the teens.

I also carry silk glove liners which can add more comfort as it gets colder.l

Head and neck require attention, I use either a silk balaclava or the BMW windstopper and a neck gaiter.

I use a bandana to snug up the Gerbings collar and then use the neck gaiter for an overlay.

Keeping extremities warm is essential.

New heated sock options are available for longer rides.

I don't have heated socks but have resorted to using a plastic bag over socks for added heat retention.

Long rides I wear a sock liner under wool calf high socks, using heat on core and hands with the heated seat seems to do the trick.

Link to comment



Love my jacket/pants/sox/gloves. Have been down in low temps and hideous weather at altitude. NOTHING, I mean nothing beats heated gear when the weather is cold wet and crappy.


+1 The jacket and gloves I use have served me well into the high teens/low twenties for hours at a time when coupled with heated grips.


OP didn't mention what kind of outer gear you are wearing but if you have good waterproof and otherwise well sealed gear top and bottom you should have no issues once you find the right set up for you. I would also second going with a full jacket instead of a vest liner.

Link to comment
Danny caddyshack Noonan

Wool socks if you find your feet damp in the least. You'd be surprised how well they work. You can even use a polypropylene liner sock under them should you desire.

BTW merino wool, not the itchy stuff they used to make Navy 13 button pants from.

Link to comment

+1 for Warm n Safe.

I have the Gen 3 jacket liner and gloves and am still riding here in Kansas.

I used this combination on my trip to Alaska in June and it was wonderful being warm in 40 degree rain for days.

Link to comment

Thanks for the responses, will look into a jacket liner soon. Brisco, you aren't to far geographically from me. Maybe I'll run into you sometime, I'm near Basehor.

Link to comment

The jacket liner will make a ton of difference. I've only used Gerbing so can't compare to others. The liner works great. If you buy the Gerbing T5 gloves they are pretty much instant hot and they are waterproof. No over glove required.


Whatever you do, make sure you buy the dual controller now. Some place along the way you will add another piece of gear be it, gloves, pants, or socks. You can run with a single controller but then you can't really adjust the heat independently. If your vest is too hot and your gloves too cool, you will just have to live with it if you buy a single controller.


I love my T5 gloves, but they aren't as comfortable as regular gloves due to the bulk.


If you are only able to invest in one warming device, get the vest and controller first.


No affiliation...

Link to comment
Delaware Dave

I just brought home a "New to Me" 1999 R1100RT on the 23rd of December. I rode 100 miles in windy, 37 degree temperatures.


I wore a long sleeve Tshirt under an Olympia "GT Air All Seasons Transition Jacket". This was my first ride with this jacket and I must say, I was quite warm enough with it.


For the warmer months, the double liner is removable, and the zippered panels reveal mesh. I think it will be a great three season jacket for me.

Link to comment

There is more to staying warm than gear. It's about technique too. Aside form all the trick electrics, which are nice, some basics bear consideration:


First of all, your gear must fit to exclude all air intrusion.


For me that meant a high top waterproof boot that would receive my windproof insulated pant liners to seal off the lower leg.


Sealing off the waist will depend on your gear. A pair of rain pants brought up high (my Frog Togs come up well above my waist) may do the trick if you have a short cut two piece outfit as I do. Whatever, seal off the waistline or cold air will be coming up your back.


Sealing the jacket neck and wrists are not usually too tough. Of course good gauntlet style winter gloves are a must, or the aforementioned electrics.


The neck and chin area can be challenging, and up into the helmet as well. Tim's suggestions are a good place to start. You need to keep cold air from coming up into the helmet from the neck as well protect the neck itself.


The helmets usually do a pretty good job of keeping your head warm, once you seal off the neckline. However, the face shield can fog, especially if you are stopping down the vents for warmth. So far I haven't done anything about this, and often have to ride with my face shield cracked. A choice between freezing or being blind. The pinlock type face shields are all the rage. You may want to look into one. So far I have not any chemical treatments of the face shield that work.


Now that your air infiltration under control your wicking base layer, windproof and waterproof layer, and any insulating or heated layers can work.


It is all about layers. You want to be able to add or remove them as conditions dictate. I interweave my layers to reduce air infiltration and risk of exposed skin.


Bottom line for me:


Base layer: Knee length heavy wicking socks, such as for hiking and wicking undies (polypropylene) go on first. Then a long sleeve turtle neck polypropylene shirt. Then I pull on some warm heavy stretch tights so that the tights are over the socks and the shirt is tucked in. Of course electric socks would be nice.... dreams...


Insulating layer: Varies. Often just liners that come with my Olympia gear. Or the warmnsafe heated jacket instead, or both. Pants tucked into boots, jacket tucked into pants.


Gear layer: Waterproof and windproof winter jacket. So far I still use mesh pants. Likely a mistake that. Glove gauntlets over jacket sleeves, pants over boot tops (sometimes use a velcro band to cinch down on boot tops). Neck gear outside of insulating layer, and inside of gear layer.


Over layer (for extreme cold only): The Frog Toggs or similar breathable wind resistant waterproof rain gear.


Generally keep the gear as light practicable for the conditions, so you can ride. Always have one more layer available than you think you will need. If you find you have all your gear on, it is time to start to look for shelter and think about getting off the road.

Link to comment

Good to hear!

That's one jacket I'm interested in for future use.


May still want to consider at least an electric vest for those

longer rides in the cold,you will be a lot more comfortable as well as

more alert if you are warm and not having to work hard to keep

generating enough heat.



Link to comment

Don't forget the first rule! Start warm!


You'll really never get any warmer than your starting point (unless traveling into warmer climates). This is your starting point. If you spend a lot of time in the cold air with everything open and cooling off, you're starting at a disadvantage.


Other than that, and the wise advice from Jan, all I can add is Turtle Fur. I always keep one or two on the bike, it really makes a difference.

Link to comment

I've gone with the full Gerbing's setup-- jacket liner, t3 gloves, pant liner, and insoles. Base layer is usually some sort of under armor. Balaclava (with ears cut out -- my ears are too sensitive otherwise) under the helmet.


All of this is under Revit Defender GTX suit.


In the past, I did a 30 mile ride at -5F using only the Gerbing jacket and heated Widder gloves (no heat in pants or shoes) and survived. Biggest problem was instant breath freeze on the visor!!


Link to comment


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...