Monday, October 25, 2010

Last of the Sunny Days?

I haven't posted up much lately. There hasn't been much to post up. Most mornings this is the view:
From a past commute
The outside of my faceshield mists up badly in the fog. Maybe it's the smaller windscreen on the Ninja, since I never had that happen on the cruiser with it's massive windshield. As quickly as I wipe it off it fogs back up. I'm giving the heated grips mixed reviews. Perhaps my gloves are too thick, but with the colder temps I barely feel the warmth.  I'm not sure they'll be warm enough for lower temps. Still, they help keep the edge off even if the fingers still get chilled.

The afternoon commute is payback for the foggy mornings. Dry roads, warm sun. My co-worker is jealous (not my fault he didn't ride). Yeah, the afternoon commute has been a treat. I went for a short ride on Friday that pretty much sums up the afternoon rides this week.
The weekend forecast calls for rain blown in on the wind. Ron and I wimp out on a bicycle ride. 55 miles with lots of climbing, rain and wind...pass, thank you. We'll spend the weekend plotting home improvements, and leave all two-wheeled vehicles in the garage.
Sunday brought hail, thunder, wind, know, typical Pacific northwest weather.
The Storm
Fifteen minutes later
It's supposed to be the same nasty weather tomorrow. I think Sam needs another day off.


  1. My heated grips work best when its not too cold and I can wear my thin gloves. I have the same issue as you with thicker gloves in that I cannot feel the heat through the insulated layers. There are different anti-fog and water displacement products you can get that I am told work well for full faced helmets. Have you tried any of those? I have some at home, but cannot remember what they are called.

  2. BlueKat: I use something similar to RainX and the moisture just blows away in the wind, but not so much if you are stopped or going slow. Should be okay for you as I know you don't ride slow.

    Wear thinner gloves. I also have hand guards which help a lot to keep the wind away. If you don't mind the wires then heated gloves may be better as there are heaters in each finger, or those one shot heating pads, or those magic pads which can be reused

    Wet Coast Scootin

  3. This is what happens when you listen to guys -- their idea of heat is a lot different than most of ours! :)

    It's too late to change grips, so look for summerweight waterproof gloves, or gloves made specifically for use with heated grips (designed with less padding in the palms).

    (The other) Stacey resorted to heated gloves due to circulation issues. No amount of heat out of the grips was going to help there.

    Fog is absolutely the worst. I didn't have much luck with Nikwax Visor Proof, but I'd be happy to bring it to Saturday coffee sometime so you can give it a whirl if you want. In my experience, tiny droplets of mist require some form of mechanical action to clear, like a rubber wiper.

    Visor Proof works well in a good hard rain, but if you use a wiper, the coating doesn't last long. One or the other, but not both.

  4. Right now, I'd settle for being able to ride in rain, fog, wind, etc. :-)

    @Stacy, you are probably right about different definition of heat. I tried the grip heaters on my bike this fall but enjoyed riding more with them turned off. Too hot. I guess I must have good circulation or a cold heart (Cold hands - warm heart, or something like that).

    Do the hand guards make any difference?

  5. BTW, the waterfalls in the header photo look wonderful. What was the shutter speed?

  6. I woke up to snow here (Utah) this morning...*sigh*

    I use heated gloves, yes a pain to mess with the cord, but ohhhhhhh sooooooooooo warm! :)

  7. Yep, the days of summer are definitely over. We had torrential rains starting yesterday, the drumming agains the windows kept me awake at night, and the noise on the roof makes me sleepy now while I am in the office.

    As for the heated grips: Thinner waterproof gloves together with the handguards do the trick for me.

  8. Ahhh cold fingers, it is that time of year. I too have a problem with cold hands and poor circulation. When at REI two weeks ago I picked up a pair of Swix System 4 Membrane Split Mittens.

    They are split like a lobster claw. They don't have as much padding on the palms so I can still feel the heat of the grips but the padding on the backs are a thermal windblocker supposed to be good to -20 F˚. Tried them out on Sunday and loved them. Could still feel the grips and my fingers weren't cold. A first for me. They were $44 but I had a 20% off coupon. I would recommend them.

    Here is a link:
    If it doesn't work, go to and search Swix split mittens.

    Let me know if you are coming to coffee one day and I'll bring them for you to look at/play with. You are welcome to drive over any saturday on 4 wheels. A lot of us do in the fall/winter asthe weather is too miserable to 2 wheels.


  9. Hand guards didn't seem to make much of a difference on the really cold days, but I run so cold that I doubt others will feel the same.

    @RichardM: Yep, it's a variation of the eternal "how cold/hot should we set the thermostat" question! :)

    @Trobairitz: Are you wearing those split mits over riding gloves or by themselves? (The other) Stacey has a similar pair for bicycle riding and seems to like them.

  10. I too was questioning the heated grips today, they didn't seem to heat as well as my Hot Grips or the element wraps. I had them on 75% this afternoon before I felt any decent heat from them. Still too soon to give a decent evaluation though. A heated liner will help when the weather gets really cold to keep your core (and hands) warm.
    As far as the visor, nothing helps with fog. I use a Fog City insert, Scorpion helmet breathbox and Nikwax Visor Proof which are all great for cold and rain but fog is still too fine to eliminate without using your glove every 30 seconds.

  11. Great comments! Thanks everyone!!

    Guess I'll have to experiment with some different types of gloves. My hands do ok, it's just my fingers that get cold. I'm not ready to go for the heated gloves yet. It would be one more wire and yet another switch. It's becoming a quite a chore to turn off and unplug everything each time I stop. :)

    As for the faceshield, I have a pinlock shield that works well to keep condensation off of the inside. I haven't tried any of the anti-fog things. If it means no wiping the shield, I'll probably fail. I can't keep my hands off the shield, be it rain, fog or bugs...I'm compelled to touch it. I'm surprised it wasn't an issue on the cruiser. I rode in fog many times, but I never had the outside of the shield fog up.

    Hi Stacy,
    lol - too true about the guys. I have a lighter pair of mc gloves that I'm going to try. I can't imagine not wiping the shield, so probably any coatings aren't going to last long. Just curious, are Stacey's the Pearl Izumi lobster gloves? I've been considering those for a few years (decisive I'm not) for biking. Thanks

    Hi Richard
    Love the handguards. They do a good job of keeping the wind off my hands, though I can still feel it a little across the top of my hands. My only wish would be that they were a little bigger to maybe prevent that.

    Per the header: Thanks :)
    The settings were: f5/6, 1/4-sec, ISO-100, with polarizer. I messed up on the aperture setting, but a few pics came out ok.

  12. Thanks Gary,
    I'm going to experiment with some other gloves before giving into heated ones. Maybe it's the challenge...I can do this without giving in to more wiring! :)

    Hi Bob,
    Yes, yes, speedy Kari, tearing up the roads! No wonder I'm cold...all that windchill from those triple-digit rides. :)

    Hi Ken,
    You and Richard both have snow! Fortunately ours usually stays in the mountains (where I like it to be!). I don't do any winter sports. I guess for me snow is a spectator sport...preferably from inside near a big fire. :)

    Hi Sonja,
    I love to hear rain on the windows or the roof, when I'm snug inside. I find it very relaxing.

    Hi Trobairitz,
    Thanks for the info on the mittens. I'm intrigued & will be heading over to after I finish here. Unbelievably, I still have my divided to spend...a whopping $3 but oh well! :)
    We want to make a Saturday coffee one of these mornings. It competes with our bicycling, so we haven't made it yet. Confession time...we were going to try last Saturday since we skipped the ride, but we slept in instead.

    Hi Troubadour,
    It seems like it takes a while for them to heat up completely. The jacket warms up quicker. After reading all the comments I've come to the conclusion that wiping the shield will be standard operating procedure this year. :)

  13. Have you looked into glove liners? use them with lighter gloves and crank the thermostat all the way up ;-) Here's an example, there are all different kinds of liners.

  14. By the way, love your main picture at the top, beautiful ;-)

  15. Hi George,
    I have some silk liners that I used last winter. I haven't tried them this year...still buried with the other winter stuff. Thanks for the reminder, I'm gonna go dig them out.