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Thread: I'm getting hot!

  1. #1
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    I'm getting hot!

    I have a BMW jacket (might be a Rallye) with all the armor. Despite the many vents, I am getting hot and sweaty even in mildly warm spring weather. I want to be protected but I am dying out there! Any suggestions on what to get for summer riding?

  2. 05-22-2010, 04:28 PM
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  3. #2
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    If I had a clue from your profile what part of the country you live in, and what kind of wind protection is on your bike, and what you consider mildly warm spring weather, I could provide a better answer.

    First off - I wear an Aerostich Roadcrafter jacket most of the time, year around. It vents a bit, but less than some and more than some. It does pass some air through the fabric, which is highly criticized in some circles for cold weather. I like it.

    In hot weather I primarily ride an R1150R with a medium sized plexi shield. I get wind on my shoulders, arms, legs, and parts of my torso. I also ride an F650 which is about the same wind-wise. When I ride my K75RTP the circumstances are different because of the full fairing, large windshield, and lack of air flow on the body.

    But generally, mesh jackets are good for short trips in warm to hot weather. In truly hot weather, say 95 degrees or hotter they just let hot air blow on you. And they allow the air flow to cause rapid dehydration. So I wear my mesh jacket on warm but not hot days, or for short trips only. I don't even take it along when traveling around the country for the summer on my R1150R.

    More solid fabric jackets with decent venting are best in hot weather because you can use the vents to control air flow and avoid dehydration when doing day-long riding. My somewhat breezy Aerostich is good at that. My First Gear blocks air flow better in cool/cold weather but is hotter in the summer.

    The key is to get some evaporative cooling. A long sleeve cotton shirt with the sleeves wet works wonders if your bike is one where your wrists are out in the wind so air can blow up the sleeves. An evaporative vest that you wet down and put on under your jacket is truly a lifesaver in very hot weather. There are several brands available. My first one took a long time - like 20 minutes - to soak up water and then it evaporated in about 15 minutes. Barely useful. The OSI one I have now gets fully wet in a minute or two and provides cooling for at least an hour under my Aerostich. Some folks get by with a wet bandanna, or an Evapodana which is made out of the same type of absorbent as a decent cool vest.

    If you happen to ride a fully faired touring bike with a large windshield and fairing you will get little airflow on your body and evaporative cooling doesn't work very well unless you can get some air flow up your sleeves. In this case however, the blast furnace effect through mesh gear and the risk of dehydration is much less so mesh gear works pretty well in very hot weather even, as long as you are attentive to drinking plenty of fluids. My mesh jacket has a wind block liner, but it takes real self discipline to add the liner when it is so hot the wind is causing dehydration but that is what you need to do.

    As a point of reference I live 53 miles south of Alpine, Texas, in the Chihuahuan Desert. It was in the mid 90s yesterday at the house and over 100 in the Rio Grande valley 30 miles to the south. I went riding down south and wore my mesh jacket because it was only a 50 mile ride. Any further and I would have had on my Aerostich and evaporative vest.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://www.bigbend.net/users/glaves

  4. #3
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    Good advice.

    The danger of dehydration on longer rides is not trivial- it eventually degrades all reactions and warps judgement if you let it get started. At the track, we are constantly on our students to drink enough to "piss clear" all day to avoid what will otherwise be a rash of afternoon episodes. I find that I can consume as much as 6 qts of water on very hot days and I only weight 180 lbs! A human body CANNOT absorb water fast enough to recover from dehydration quickly- it takes quite a few hours if you let it happen in the first place. Also, ice cold liquids are not absorbed as well as warmer liquids. Re sports drinks- all of the Gatorades and similar have too much sugar and other uneeded stuff and should be cut at least 1-1 with water. Don't drink only sports drinks!

    For specifics on good mesh for short rides and around town at lower speeds- I'd suggest the Rev it Air as allowing a lot of ventilation. It does not have a liner but you may already have one from another jacket.

  5. #4
    Benchwrenching PGlaves's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by racer7 View Post
    Good advice.

    The danger of dehydration on longer rides is not trivial- it eventually degrades all reactions and warps judgement if you let it get started. At the track, we are constantly on our students to drink enough to "piss clear" all day to avoid what will otherwise be a rash of afternoon episodes. I find that I can consume as much as 6 qts of water on very hot days and I only weight 180 lbs! A human body CANNOT absorb water fast enough to recover from dehydration quickly- it takes quite a few hours if you let it happen in the first place. Also, ice cold liquids are not absorbed as well as warmer liquids. Re sports drinks- all of the Gatorades and similar have too much sugar and other uneeded stuff and should be cut at least 1-1 with water. Don't drink only sports drinks!

    For specifics on good mesh for short rides and around town at lower speeds- I'd suggest the Rev it Air as allowing a lot of ventilation. It does not have a liner but you may already have one from another jacket.
    When in travel mode on hot days I try to drink at least one quart an hour. I take no special steps to keep the water cool. I just drink, refill, drink, refill, with occasional stops to get rid of some of all that water I drink.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell
    http://www.bigbend.net/users/glaves

  6. #5
    Midnight Rider 41077's Avatar
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    Summer heat.

    If you really get hot in spite of all the afore mentioned suggestions (all really good) stop at a gas station whith a water hose (free hopefully) make sure if the hose has been sitting in the sun to let the watre run until cold. Soak a bandana tie it around you neck, soak your head. This will cool you down fast. If really really hot rest in some shade because you really could die out there (Texas summer riding experience) if you can't cool down.

  7. #6
    Colorado High Country glennhendricks's Avatar
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    Olympia Airglide 2

    I wear an Olympia Airglide 2 jacket. It has armor and a windproof/water resistant liner for when it is chilly. I needed something with more air flow on my RT in the Colorado summer.

    I got the pants as well so when it is warm I'm pretty comfortable.

  8. #7
    Got curvy roads?
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    Pants choice

    It is finally getting warm here. Went for a 500+ mile trip yesterday & 150+ today. Biggest draw back are my 5 year old mesh pants. I need something I can move around in, provide protection, and air flow (summer pants). My old Coretech's mesh are just not cutting it. Surprisling they are great winter pants. Go figure. Suggestions...?

    I liked the look of the pants GlennHendricks mentioned.

    Experiences???
    BMW MOA, AMA, KCBMWMC
    09 R12rt, 01 KTM 200 Exc, 84 Honda Big Red
    98 Katana 750 (gone to a new home)

  9. #8
    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    Recovery!

    If dehydration gets you and it does even the best atheletes at times, your only resource to recover is an Emergency Room. An IV into the arm will speed up the recovery and you'll still feel sick for days. I know, been there done that with my daughter a few years back. She was only 15 and had been riding back seat for years with me, across country too. We got caught, experienced and knowing the facts, still got caught not drinking enough and I had not payed much attention till it was too late for her. She recovered and we were FAR from home. Delta, Utah ER, was our place of all the above. Nice town. Hospital ER visit cost me 128$ total, can you believe that!!! Randy

  10. #9
    Got curvy roads?
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    feet

    While speaking about getting hot... Any suggestions on socks?
    BMW MOA, AMA, KCBMWMC
    09 R12rt, 01 KTM 200 Exc, 84 Honda Big Red
    98 Katana 750 (gone to a new home)

  11. #10
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    When I'm hot, I take my jacket off. When I'm cool, I put it on. Never gave it much thought, nor have I ever considered asking anybody else what to do in either situation...LOL!

  12. #11
    Kbiker BCKRider's Avatar
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    For hot weather riding, I wear a FirstGear mesh jacket. My evaporative "cooling vest" came from a thrift store for, I believe, $2. This was originally a long-sleeve very heavy cotton pull-over that zips up to cover your neck. To reduce the bulk, used my wife's pinking shears to remove the sleeves and also cut off the bottom part a little above my belly button. (Yes, a real fashion statement.)

    Soak this baby in a river, lake, or gas station sink; wring it out, then pull it on (burr!!!) Do zip up the part over your neck. The neck and torso are the parts of your body that really do need the evaporative cooling. With temps in the 90's, I found I was comfortable for about 4 hours before needing to resoak. (Important - this was a in low humidity. Wouldn't work in Florida.) Also important - though I have a windscreen, there was some air movement over my body. Obviously, the more air that hits your neck and chest, the greater the cooling, and the sooner you need to resoak.

    On my lower half I wear jockey shorts, a pair of thin cotton trousers, and leather riding pants with "braces" to hold them up. I'm sure there are better ideas - except for maybe the leather pants. On my K bikes they certainly eliminate the "K-bake" from the engine. Not sure why since leather is not great insulation. But my lower half seems to stay comfortable and I use the leather pants in all temps.

    On my feet, I wear a pair of thin socks, a pair of tall thicker socks which go over the cotton pants, and my boots. Since my POS former boots caused me no discomfort, I don't expect that my new BMW Allround boots will either.

    Oh yeah, when I tour, I carry a rainsuit. Only need the bottoms for heavy rain, but the top comes out on mountain passes and when it is cold. Easier than zipping that non-waterproof lining into my jacket.
    Doug
    1992 K100RS

  13. #12
    Outlander Omega Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by PGlaves View Post
    When in travel mode on hot days I try to drink at least one quart an hour. I take no special steps to keep the water cool. I just drink, refill, drink, refill, with occasional stops to get rid of some of all that water I drink.
    +1 And if you have been riding a while and realized that you haven't had to make a pit stop, it's time to drink more.

  14. #13
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    I live in calif. sooooo
    wet sweat shirt under your vented riding jacket...+1

    In your tank bag keep a camelback blatter in a insulated bag. run the tube outside of the bag. ice your water, and drink often...did i say drink often? if you get thirsty...you have waited too long for a drink.

    not much works in the southeast in summer time except a nice rainstorm

  15. #14
    Registered User stkmkt1's Avatar
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    I wear Aerostich Darian pants and jacket year-round regardless of weather. Regarding drinking fluids, I alternate water and "low cal" drink like G2 with every other stop. I am thinking of getting a Camelback, but I enjoy stopping to visit with folks while drinking and taking a leak.
    '09 BMW 1200 GSA, 2013 BMW 700GS, 2000 Goldwing SE, '09' V Star 950, '09 Honda Rebel,
    '77 Honda 750A. Holding at six til I get new garage built - need more room for more bikes!

  16. #15
    RIDERR1150GSADV
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    Quote Originally Posted by Omega Man View Post
    +1 And if you have been riding a while and realized that you haven't had to make a pit stop, it's time to drink more.
    +1
    That may be the time to drink Pedialite and really rehydrate. The worst stuff for drinking are soda's and caffeine holding products, if those are the only drinks you're drinking. Even Gatorade has it's drawback's with all that sugar in it...
    On another note here, all that mesh gear may not be as good as most people think, as it allows water/moisture to evaporate out of your body faster than you can drink back in, specially in low humidity conditions. It is tempting to ride around in that stuff, but a cooling vest underneath is the best option to reduce your waterloss. With reason, the Bedouins in the Sahara don't run around half dressed either....YMMV

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