Winter riding - Kawasaki KLR 650 Forum
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post #1 of 11 Old 09-29-2015, 11:20 AM Thread Starter
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Winter riding

I have a lot of questions with this this post, so here they go.....
I have a 2014 klr that I use just for street, I live in Indiana and want to ride it in the winter, but am smart about it, is there anybody who lives in the snow belt that rides and what do you put on it to keep the salt off, I want it to stay looking nice, what kind of gear do you wear, I have a shoei multitec and seen a breath box, but do I need the double shield if I have that, and also thinking about a snowmobile suit, my ride to work is 20 miles so staying warm is going to be a big one, I have a heated liner for my jacket, and it works great with my voyager, but I'm not as warm on the klr with it, so any help or suggestions are welcome.
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post #2 of 11 Old 09-29-2015, 12:26 PM
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Yo Rodney,

I'm in Indiana at the Michigan state line and ride year 'round.
My commute is 11 miles. I use full dirt knobbies for snow tires. The
cops have never once mentioned my tread in a lifetime of riding.

With no electric stuff I just dress like an eskimo and go for it.

A more detailed answer is a hoodie under the helmet, wrapped in a ski jacket.
Snowmobile helmet, gloves that overlap my sleeves, sweatpants for longjohns,
and the big thing....... leave the riding boots on the heater vent !! Putting on very
warm boots keeps the feet happy for most of my trip and by then it's time to warm
up indoors.

I'm not a daily rider but ride a few times a month in the off season cuz it's more fun
than winterizing. Plus, when that freak 50+ degree day hits in Feb or March I'm
running and ready while everyone else has their bikes under a tarp or on a battery
tender, crammed in the corner of the garage, etc. In the super cold I still ride up
and down my road here and there just to keep all the fluids and battery "fresh".

Bundle up and have some fun,
Cheeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeap

I don't worry a bit about salt on the plastic or aluminum. The few steel bits exposed
are fine thus far (mine's a 2009). On a day above freezing I hose the thing off and shoot
some WD-40 on the chain and helmet lock, axle bolts, and do little else. I also run the stock handguards (the "elephant ears") and a tall Dakar windshield.

This is my son, with whom I am well pleased." ----God

Last edited by CheapBassTurd; 09-29-2015 at 12:35 PM. Reason: addition
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post #3 of 11 Old 09-29-2015, 07:22 PM
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Rain gear over your warm stuff will keep the cold air out and the warm in.

Crash
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post #4 of 11 Old 09-29-2015, 09:06 PM Thread Starter
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Ok, good info, I need new tires here soon and was going to put on gripsters, but if I'm going to ride it this winter I should probably put a set of stock tires on then, I'm not going to ride when it's bad or in the negatives, I usually put my bikes up in Dec and will put the voyager up but the klr is going to keep going.
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post #5 of 11 Old 09-29-2015, 10:34 PM
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Originally Posted by rodneyw71 View Post
Ok, good info, I need new tires here soon and was going to put on gripsters, but if I'm going to ride it this winter I should probably put a set of stock tires on then, I'm not going to ride when it's bad or in the negatives, I usually put my bikes up in Dec and will put the voyager up but the klr is going to keep going.
Avon Gripster's are as good as any in the cold, IMO!

pdwestman
Modify at "YOUR OWN RISK"!

Still riding my 1987 KL650-A1. 84,000+ miles & counting
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post #6 of 11 Old 09-29-2015, 10:58 PM
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I've got one of those somewhat cheap setups from Cycle Gear - the Bilt Explorer H2O setup that I wear when it starts getting colder. I'm usually good down to the upper 20s before I really start thinking about parking the bike and commuting in my truck. I've got the "Freeze Out" undershirt and long johns that I'll sometimes wear, but usually I'm wearing jeans, a t-shirt, a long-sleeved sweatshirt, and one of the "Freeze Out" neck gaiters.

The only thing I'm looking at getting different here soon is a pair of decent mittens so my fingers won't get as cold.

However, once the snow starts falling, the bike is typically parked until the roads are clear again.

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post #7 of 11 Old 10-03-2015, 07:56 AM
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I'm a huge fan of handlebar mitts -- Hippo Hands and similar. They let me wear lighter gloves and keep fog/rain/sleet/snow off the gloves. Even insulated gloves are a little bit cooler when wet. I made mine with long wrist tubes so wind has to go a long way to get to my hands or in my sleeves.

The other key (for me) is the windproof neck tube. Mine tucks up into the bottom of my Shoei Qwest and inside the chin curtain that's standard on the Qwest. That chin curtain is not air-tight but the combo does increase fogging The left-side lever is often enough venting. It can take a good 10 miles for the inside of the helmet to warm enough to close the face shield completely. Too much venting and I'll need venting longer.

Starting and ending warm is another help. If I'm saving firewood and kinda chilly at home, I won't want to ride. If I'm all comfy and warm, a chilly ride is welcome (and I'll come home ready to stoke the stove till it's red).

But I don't commute (anytime ever) and I don't usually go out on wet winter roads.
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post #8 of 11 Old 10-05-2015, 11:31 AM
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My standard cold weather outfit for a 10 mile commute (15 minutes), is an Aerostich Darien with fleece liner, insulated Carhartt overalls, and, for this season, some Cabela's Pinnacle gloves. Never been a fan of mittens on a motorcycle. With this I'm good down to 0F, though it does get a little chilly at that temp. Helps that I ride a snowmobile at work, so get sort of used to it. I have a Shoei Neotec with the pinlock shield which I really like; previous helmets were always fogging up when I slowed or stopped.
Grinnin brought up a good point about the wind-proof neck tube. I have a dickey (no snickering!) that seals the gaps pretty well. Can't remember where I got it, but it does help with a chink in the armor.
Also, maybe a larger windshield just for the winter months might help keep some of the wind chill down. Good luck, and have fun. People will think you're crazy!

Conrad Long
'08 KLR 650
'96 R1100RT
'94 R1100RS
'75 XS650B
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post #9 of 11 Old 10-05-2015, 07:43 PM Thread Starter
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I have heated gear, I use it on the voyager, I just don't know if the klr's electrical system can handle it, it's the 90w and I have gloves but don't know the watts, a guy at work gave me snowmobile bibs, so I just need a winter helmetand I'm going to put the Avon gripsters on in a few weeks.
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post #10 of 11 Old 10-05-2015, 08:52 PM
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I don't know anything about riding in that kind of cold, but when it gets chilly here, a drop of dishwashing soap or shaving creme rubbed into the inside of the faceshield helps a lot with fogging. Might help a little? I'd hate leaving it cracked. Ride safe.




"In a car you're always in a compartment, and because you're used to it you don't realize that through that car window everything you see is just more TV." R. Pirsig

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Soon, we ride.

AKA JD Mader or you can call me "Dan" just not early for dinner.

Click my handle for a link to my homepage/blog...which has nothing to do with MCs. Free literature and music! Viva La Revolucion!
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