Touring Gear-what to wear? - Ducati Monster Forums: Ducati Monster Motorcycle Forum
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post #1 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-06-2013, 02:02 AM Thread Starter
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Touring Gear-what to wear?

Hi all,

Taking my M796ABS on a two week road trip, probably 3,000 miles up the California coast (Hwy 1) from Santa Barbara to Seattle and back. Planning on a May or June departure when things warm up a bit and I'm just wondering what I should wear in terms of a clothing top layer. I have a nice Dainese leather jacket and kevlar jeans that I wear on local rides etc. but was wondering if I should rely on layers or be better prepared for cold and wet on such a long ride, even though it will be summer. I imagine I'll get caught at night a few times and that maybe it'll be colder in some places than I imagine, and might even rain despite the fact I'll be waiting for a sunny forecast. I'm considering heated gear (gloves, jacket liner $500) or a 'four season' touring suit (Rev'it "Sand" jacket/pants combo $550 on sale at Revzilla) but wondering if it's worth the money if I don't plan to use the stuff much after this trip, or if it's overkill for what should be a pretty fair weather ride. I only have a tank bag for storage so space is at a premium. Any thoughts/advice from the more experienced touring riders out there? Thanks!

2011 Monster 796 ABS - Arctic White
Termignoni Carbon Slip Ons
Race ECU and Air Filter
41T Rear Sprocket
Motovation Frame and Fork Sliders
Motovation Bar Ends
Zero Gravity Tinted Screen
Vizi-Tec Supabrake
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post #2 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-06-2013, 09:14 AM
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I think the overkill is overkill for that planned ride. It can get chilly along the coast at night, even in the summer, so I'd carry some longjohns. For wet, I'd just get an inexpensive rainsuit for about $100; that will be adequate.

If you're doing a lot of this, then investing in more durable gear is worth it. But for an occasional trip, there's no need to.

PhilB

1993 Ducati M900 Monster "Patina" (265,000 miles, killed by minivan 30Oct17) -- 1995 Ducati M900 (wife's bike) -- 1979 Vespa P200 (daughter's scoot) -- 1964 Vespa GS160 (160cc 2-stroke) -- 1962 Maicoletta scooter (275cc 2-stroke) -- 1960 Heinkel Tourist 103A1 scooter "Elroy" (175cc 4-stroke)
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post #3 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-07-2013, 11:53 PM
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Damnit, I've been enjoying my anonymity here for ages and now I finally feel compelled to break my streak.

Two weeks, 3,000 miles, up and down the coast. I've done this...more times than I care to admit on too many bikes. It's a fantastic ride, no doubt.

Summer or Winter, the roads will tend to be cold, damp and dirty with the first two especially common in the morning and evening. Rain gear is a must whether it's raining or not. It's common to have June-Gloom fog and mist through 10am along the coast. It's also possible to have temps in the high 40's, though upper 50's in the early AM is more common.

Leather is fine as long as you have the rain gear. You never when you will just plain get caught in it. Electrics are a great option - definitely extending the riding and adding huge comfort. If you don't have an e-vest, consider smartwool thermals, tops and bottoms. It never ceases to amaze me how much heat is lost through the legs...and the Monster doesn't hardly put out enough heat to make much of a difference.

On a budget I'd go hit CycleGear like, right now, for their Freeze-Out stuff. It's cheap, on sale and actually works.

Consider a neck-gator, bandana, balaclava or some such. Very handy in the cold and just as handy in the heat to keep the hot air off the neck. I pretty much wear a neck buff year round.

My touring gear typically is as follows:

Dainese Leathers (*or Aerostich Roadcrafter)
Waterproof Rain Gear
Neck Buff
Riding boots (gore-tex)
Two sets of gloves (one waterproof set)

In the tail bag I'll add my e-Vest, Smartwool thermals, a light fleece shirt (thin, extra warmth layer) and, of course, whatever change of clothes I want. Typically that's just a Target running shirt/pant combo and a couple changes of underwear (synthetic) and socks. I don't bother with extra shoes anymore, just a pair of flip-flops.

Oh, make sure you have a flat-repair kit and know how to use it. I've plugged many a tire on the road - many of which weren't my own.

Don't worry so much about riding in the rain. It's quite nice actually. Just slow it down and be easy on the controls and watch the white-lines in the road. I do an annual Monterey Ride that's become known as "Monterey Madness" in December. We typically get rained on in a big way. One year was 750 straight miles of downpour. That rocked in soo many ways.

Above all, DO NOT SPEED on PCH! It's heavily patrolled and the LEO's are merciless.

Oh, other thoughts: Nacimiento-Fegussen is a fantastic road. The ride through Fort Hunter-Leggit is spectacular in NorCal, especially coming from inland and dropping down to PCH. Incredible overlooks. If you get to the Eureka-Fortuna area in NorCal, ask around for the "Lost Coast Loop". It's a truly undeveloped segment of PCH and worth the find. The Loop takes you through the Redwoods...

Oh, and when you cross from Cali into Oregon the speedlimit drops from 65 to 55 and there's a cop on the Oregon side waiting to nail you.

Above all else, enjoy the moment and have fun!

(*Ok, back to being a lurker...)







Yes, you can in fact tour on anything.



That was 2300 miles in four days...

Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines!

Just ride.

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post #4 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 01:10 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks Creaky!

Sorry to pull you out of lurker retirement, but I appreciate the thoughtful and thorough reply...and the awesome photos! Just what I was looking for. Looks like you've logged some fun miles, hoping to do the same. At this point I guess I'll stick with what I've got, layer up, pick up a Frogg Toggs rain suit, and probably some Gerbing's waterproof heated gloves. Seems like the least amount of gear to add to my pile, and the most efficient bang for the buck.

I've had my eye on that Nacimiento road for a while now, maybe I'll have to work it into my trip.

One question though, I hadn't even considered the flat tire kit...do you have a tool/parts list, or one you recommend or a website to buy from? Like I said, my storage space is very limited and I don't know if I could fit a compressor etc., but I wouldn't want to be sidelined in the middle of nowhere. I wish I could put saddle bags on my bike and add some room, but the 796's pipes are in the way.

Anyway, thanks again for chiming in, appreciate the effort. Maybe when I get back I'll post some pics of my own!

2011 Monster 796 ABS - Arctic White
Termignoni Carbon Slip Ons
Race ECU and Air Filter
41T Rear Sprocket
Motovation Frame and Fork Sliders
Motovation Bar Ends
Zero Gravity Tinted Screen
Vizi-Tec Supabrake
Evotech Fender Eliminator
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post #5 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-08-2013, 11:56 AM
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http://www.cyclegear.com/eng/product...Kit/web1002921

That's a good kit right there for flat repairs and it's on sale. Good idea to buy a couple extra CO'2's.

The idea is just to get you to a gas station where you can get some real air if needed.

Oh, heated vest is better than heated gloves if you have to choose just one. That, and the gloves typically plug into the vest cords...

And a camera. always take the camera!

Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines!

Just ride.

IBA #: 20880
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post #6 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-09-2013, 12:32 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks again!

But why is a vest better than gloves?? My hands always freeze, eventually, but I can layer up my torso pretty well. I hear the vest recommended a lot, but never the jacket lining (with sleeves), why is that? Is a vest better than the jacket for some reason I can't see? It's cheaper, but the jacket has to be a lot warmer, plus it has plugs at the end of the sleeves for the gloves to plug into so you don't have to run bare wire down the sleeves of your leather. Seems like the warmest and most convenient package. Gerbing's has a great liner and waterproof glove combo...not cheap, but seems like those two items would keep you riding comfortably right down to sub-zero temps. Throw on the rain suit and you're golden for all four seasons, right? Oh, and yes, I always bring a camera!

Thanks again, super helpful, appreciate you passing on your experience! And your pics are getting me amped to hit the road! Whereabouts do you live anyway? Seems like maybe you're a so cal rider...always looking for riding buddies, especially up to Laguna for MotoGP.

2011 Monster 796 ABS - Arctic White
Termignoni Carbon Slip Ons
Race ECU and Air Filter
41T Rear Sprocket
Motovation Frame and Fork Sliders
Motovation Bar Ends
Zero Gravity Tinted Screen
Vizi-Tec Supabrake
Evotech Fender Eliminator
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post #7 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-09-2013, 04:54 AM
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Post pics :-)
For God's sake don't buy a two-piece rain gear. And keep it next to the zips where you can yank it out in two secs. Lastly, know which side of the bag you've packed it. I've learned it the hard way. Don't want you out freezing and riding. That's worse than DUI. Don't ask me :-)
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post #8 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-09-2013, 05:18 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ToyxDuc View Post
Post pics :-)
For God's sake don't buy a two-piece rain gear. And keep it next to the zips where you can yank it out in two secs. Lastly, know which side of the bag you've packed it. I've learned it the hard way. Don't want you out freezing and riding. That's worse than DUI. Don't ask me :-)
Uh, ok. Haha

2011 Monster 796 ABS - Arctic White
Termignoni Carbon Slip Ons
Race ECU and Air Filter
41T Rear Sprocket
Motovation Frame and Fork Sliders
Motovation Bar Ends
Zero Gravity Tinted Screen
Vizi-Tec Supabrake
Evotech Fender Eliminator
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post #9 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-10-2013, 11:00 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lord Baltimore View Post
Thanks again!

But why is a vest better than gloves?? My hands always freeze, eventually, but I can layer up my torso pretty well. I hear the vest recommended a lot, but never the jacket lining (with sleeves), why is that? Is a vest better than the jacket for some reason I can't see? It's cheaper, but the jacket has to be a lot warmer, plus it has plugs at the end of the sleeves for the gloves to plug into so you don't have to run bare wire down the sleeves of your leather. Seems like the warmest and most convenient package. Gerbing's has a great liner and waterproof glove combo...not cheap, but seems like those two items would keep you riding comfortably right down to sub-zero temps. Throw on the rain suit and you're golden for all four seasons, right? Oh, and yes, I always bring a camera!

Thanks again, super helpful, appreciate you passing on your experience! And your pics are getting me amped to hit the road! Whereabouts do you live anyway? Seems like maybe you're a so cal rider...always looking for riding buddies, especially up to Laguna for MotoGP.
Right, eVest before Gloves. The way the human body works, when the core and/or head get cold the first thing the body does is reduce blood flow to extremities. Your hands and feet will get cold first because the body MUST protect the Core first.

Second reason: the Gloves have to connect to the bike somehow (*unless you are going with the Gerbings battery gloves). The gloves tend to connect from wires run down the sleeves of the eVest or eJacket. It's easier with the eJacket as the connectors are already at the wrist enclosure.

Third: wires suck. Taking gloves on/off at gas stations, etc. It gets old, very old, to reconnect wires all the time.

Fourth: eGloves are thick. This can interfere with operating the controls. For me, I end up banging the clutch and brake levers trying to get my fingers wrapped around them.

Fifth: heated grips are really all you need in SoCal. The easy route is to get some heated grip wraps (Oxford Wraps from Twistedthrottle.com work a charm) or even better is to get a full set of heated grips (Oxford or Symtec heated grip elements. Do not go with the "in-bar" style heaters, they aren't sized correctly for the Monster handlebars.)

Sixth: at the end of a LONG day of riding (10+ hours in the saddle) the body just plain gets tired. As one gets tired the body stops producing heat as normal. It's just plain amazing to flip an e-Vest on and drive a few BTU's into the body. It takes stress off the body and can dramatically change the riding experience. I have a heat-troller (variable heat controller) wired into my bike so I can dial in 10, 15% heat levels towards the end of a long day. It's just enough to take a bit of stress off the body and re-energize me.

The e-Vest is just "one of those things" that tends to change the entire riding experience. Cold and Wet ceases to really mean a lot. I mean, Wet and WARM is actually quite tolerable. Cold and Wet just plain Sucks.

It's great when this is considered Fun.



PS: It's El Camino Cielo...just above Santa Barbara. That was just the start of the wet on that ride.





Enjoy the ride. Be prepared, but enjoy the ride. Those moments where the rain is sheeting down and every car on the freeway is just looking at you with a total "WTF" quizzical expression are priceless.

Eagles may soar, but weasels don't get sucked into jet engines!

Just ride.

IBA #: 20880
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post #10 of 12 (permalink) Old 02-11-2013, 09:33 AM
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I'm going to counter the heated gear advice. Gloves are the key. Your core you can keep plenty warm with just a few layers, especially if you're only dealing with temps in the 40s. Your hands are your most vulnerable and hard-to-keep-warm spot. I moved from San Diego to New Hampshire in 2011, and up here even down to 20F, I'm fine with layers on the body and heated cloves, which were a necessity. I put a pigtail on the bike near the headstock, and plug the gloves right into that.

I agree that a flat repair kit is a good idea, although I have yet to need it. I like to bring a few basic tools just in case -- metric allen key set, metric wrench set, screwdrivers, multitool. I have used those things a few times for minor roadside repairs.

PhilB

1993 Ducati M900 Monster "Patina" (265,000 miles, killed by minivan 30Oct17) -- 1995 Ducati M900 (wife's bike) -- 1979 Vespa P200 (daughter's scoot) -- 1964 Vespa GS160 (160cc 2-stroke) -- 1962 Maicoletta scooter (275cc 2-stroke) -- 1960 Heinkel Tourist 103A1 scooter "Elroy" (175cc 4-stroke)
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