so, i've put the gloves through their cold weather paces.
on saturday i was on a rather long term ride. we had to take the car in for it's annual inspection and we pretty much knew it wasn't going to pass, so i was the backup for transportation. that also meant that i was doing a lot of running around chasing joey while she tried to find a place to take the car in (not to mention me taking directions wrong and going to the opposite end of the city).
the temperatures hovered between 2 and 10 degrees celsius with light winds. i ended up being on bike from around 11am to 7pm (or so). mind you, this wasn't all straight riding, there were the occasional stops at stores and getting food (Wendy's spicy chicken burger with chili...mmm...warm).
before i say anything about the gloves, i'll say this: my hands are hardly ever warm. i have a problem with circulation and no matter what i do, i can't keep my hands warm when i'm outside (barring warm weather). back in my hometown i would spend a lot of time on ski-doo and there was nothing that would keep my hands warm. i tried every pair of winter gloves and nothing would work. i just gave in and suffered.
all that being said, i think the gloves worked pretty well. they did a fine job at keeping my hands from freezing for the entire day. after an hour or so, i did notice the tips of my fingers getting cold, but they weren't numb and they didn't get numb the whole day. this is a vast improvement over my winter gloves and my regular riding gloves.
the comfort is top notch as well. from the get-go they are very flexible and nothing pushes uncomfortably against your hands. i can easily grip the handle bars and reach the levers with no problems. they are a bulky glove though. if you are looking for something that you can easily pick a key out of your pocket...forget it. i can only do that if there is only one thing in my pocket...with luck. there is no way i can differentiate between objects in my pocket with three layers of material over my hands. that being said, i can use a key with no problems and i can zip up my jacket. I can't unbuckle my helmet though and it's kind of comical when i try.
review number three comes from this mornings ride to work. it takes me about 30 minutes to get to work with a quick stop at the local Java Moose outlet for my mocha-cino (yeah, i'm the big mean biker...lol). this mornings temperature was around -3 degrees celsius. in that cold my hands were numb in my regular gloves and with my winter gloves my fingers were numb. the new gloves performed great. i don't expect my hands to be toasty warm when i get to work, but i do expect to be able to use my hands and for them not to ache. these gloves did that for me. lets face it, in freezing temperatures, there isn't much that's going to keep you warm for extended periods of time. add to that the fact that i'm creating my own wind chill and i don't want it to look like my mom dressed me for a snowstorm.
so, in my books, the gloves were well worth the money spent. the last test i'll need to perform is a water proof test. that will most likely happen on my next few days off.
i have found a bike that i would quickly and willingly trade Selene for...shhh...don't tell her...
the Moto Guzzi 940 Custom.
this baby screams beauty and power. i can only imagine carving up the roads with this machine wailing away under me. brings a smile to face just thinking about it.
ok, as promised, here are my new gloves. :)
i picked these up at the local H-D dealership, the same place that i got Selene. they treat me well, so i'm always there bugging them. i was lucky to have a 50 dollar voucher for this purchase as the gloves were around 60 bucks. i picked up the gloves and an insulated leather face mask.
for the most part...i have no idea who makes these gloves. there were a bunch of tags on them, but nothing identifying the brand name. let's start off with the first tag.
Thinsulate: microfiber technology that provides warmth without bulk for greater comfort.
Hipora: a water proof liner that shuts out water, but allows moisture or warm steam from the body out.
Cordura: a light, but durable fabric that's resistant to tears and punctures.
Schoeller-Keprotec: a kevlar containing material that has extreme tear resistance.
so...yeah...there is a lot in these gloves to keep you safe and comfortable. i still have no idea who makes them though. it's almost like all these companies got together and said, "hey! let's put ALL our products in one pair of gloves!"
i have to admit, the build of the gloves is nice. the sturdy look is complimented by double stitching everywhere. the wrist strap keeps the gloves snug and the gauntlet has enough room (due to the Velcro strap) to fit over the thick cuff of my leather jacket.
as you can see from the palm view, there is a lot going on. the double stitching applies here as well which is a blessing. if a motorcycle glove is going to give out on you, it's going to happen on the palm portion. i recently destroyed a brand new pair of winter gloves due to the constant twisting of the throttle. the one part on the palm that i love is a strip of leather that runs from the thumb to the index finger. it adds a lot of grip and pretty much gives me the ability to crank the throttle with just a thumb and a finger.
unfortunately (fortunately, actually) our cold snap has all but gone, so i haven't had much of a chance to test how warm they are. we have been having a ton of rain though, but i really don't feel like riding to work in the rain just to test out the gloves. i've got better water proof tests in mind, like wearing them in the shower...wait a minute...that's just weird...
so far, i have nothing but praise for the gloves, but like i said...i haven't had much of a chance to fully test them. they are very comfortable and not at all restricting when riding. the couple of times that i've been on the bike my hands have been sweating, so i'm taking that as a good sign.
i'll be riding for sometime yet, so i'll have plenty of time to give them a full workout. expect updates on them in the coming weeks.
ah...the information i've been looking for. ripped straight from the environment canada website, i bring you windchill calculation. now i'll know exactly how cold i get...i mean feel...
i'll be putting up a post on my new gloves sometime tomorrow.
If you know the temperature outside, you can estimate the wind speed by observing the movement of trees and flags, and then find the wind chill on the second chart.
Wind Speed WIND SPEED (km/h) WHAT TO LOOK FOR 10 Wind felt on face; leaves rustle; wind vanes begin to move. 20 Leaves & small twigs constantly moving; small flags extended. 30 Dust, leaves, & loose paper lifted; large flags flap; small tree branches move. 40 Small trees begin to sway; large flags extend and flap. 50 Larger tree branches moving; whistling heard in power lines; large flags extend and flap more wildly. 60 Whole trees moving; resistance felt in walking against wind; large flags extend fully and flap only at the end
Wind Chill Index Temperature (°C)
Wind Speed (km/h)
0 -5 -10 -15 -20 -25 -30 -35 -40 -45 10 -3 -9 -15 -21 -27 -33 -39 -45 -51 -57 20 -5 -12 -18 -24 -31 -37 -43 -49 -56 -62 30 -7 -13 -20 -26 -33 -39 -46 -52 -59 -65 40 -7 -14 -21 -27 -34 -41 -48 -54 -61 -68 50 -8 -15 -22 -29 -35 -42 -49 -56 -63 -70 60 -9 -16 -23 -30 -37 -43 -50 -57 -64 -71
Notes regarding wind chill
1. For a given combination of temperature and wind speed, the wind chill index corresponds roughly to the temperature that one would feel in a very light wind. For example, a temperature of -25°C and a wind speed of 20 km/h give a wind chill index of -37. This means that, with a wind of 20 km/h and a temperature of -25°C, one would feel as if it were -37°C in a very light wind.
2. Wind chill does not affect objects and does not lower the actual temperature. It only describe how a human being would feel in the wind at the ambient temperature.
3. The wind chill index does not take into account the effect of sunshine. Bright sunshine may reduce the effect of wind chill (make it feel warmer) by 6 to 10 units.
for those of you interested in video recording while riding, Archos has just the thing for you.
it records in MPEG-4 and is supposedly in DVD quality (meaning 640x480). it features a built in microphone and remote, the ability to do slow motion and can capture without an extra light source. looks like you will have to mix it up with their 604 media player as well though. the player is already out and runs around 350 USD. the camera should be released this winter for approximately 150 USD.
it's a little on the pricey side, but the media player has a lot of nice features, including a 30GB hard drive. oh and you can get a wireless version of the 604 as well.
in honour of those that have served our country and still do
alright, i need to invest in a new pair of gloves. especially if i'm going to keep riding for as long as i can. this mornings commute was more then a little chilly and by the time i got to work i couldn't feel my hands. see, that can cause a problem as i really really need my hands in order to pilot my bike.
i have to say though, it certainly was an invigorating ride. it also kept me on my toes. with the below freezing temperatures, a lot of the water left on the roads was frozen. nothing too drastic, but definitely something you want to avoid when on two wheels.
it was good to see that i wasn't alone though. i saw three other bikes on my morning ride and they all looked as chilly as i did. nice to know there are a few other hardy souls out there.
stay safe, stay warm... ;)