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Thread: Rain jackets re-visited

  1. #1
    Kbiker BCKRider's Avatar
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    Rain jackets re-visited

    I have a Revit Sand suit that I'm fairly happy with - good protection for a crash, good ventilation in the heat, and good protection from rain WITH the rain liner installed, zipped up and snapped. For summer touring where rain is frequently brief, I think I'd be happier to leave the rain liner at home and don a light (thus packable) but waterproof jacket when the rains come. (I leave the rain liner in the pants year round. Think the extra layer - and the air between layers - minimizes heat from the road and engine. Works for me on my bike - probably not universal advice.) The problem with the Revit jacket (and probably all Cordura jackets) is they gain SERIOUS WEIGHT in heavy rain. And they don't dry out over night in a motel, much less a tent. So the questions:

    1. Can someone remind me of the thread which deals with how to wash Cordura fabrics and also make them "water-resistant?" My suit has never been washed, certainly needs it, and I'd be happy if it just didn't gain so much weight in the rain in the cooler months when I can leave the rain liner in.

    2. Are Frog Toggs still the "gold standard" for waterproof, light, and packable and are there models which are better for riding and come in bright colors? I have Field Sheer jacket and pants rain gear which I took on a recent trip. The black pants were great for fishing in the rain. The jacket leaked through the arms into my light down jacket when fishing, (there are a number of seams there) though it kept my riding jacket from getting soaked. It also has a very light busted zipper which wasn't a problem as there are also Velcro fasteners. But the jacket takes up too much space and is far from good.

    Any answers are most welcome.
    Doug
    1992 K100RS

  2. #2
    Small road corner junkie pffog's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BCKRider View Post
    ...........

    1. Can someone remind me of the thread which deals with how to wash Cordura fabrics and also make them "water-resistant?" My suit has never been washed, certainly needs it, and I'd be happy if it just didn't gain so much weight in the rain in the cooler months when I can leave the rain liner in.



    2. Are Frog Toggs still the "gold standard" for waterproof, light, and packable and are there models which are better for riding and come in bright colors? I have Field Sheer jacket and pants rain gear which I took on a recent trip. The black pants were great for fishing in the rain. The jacket leaked through the arms into my light down jacket when fishing, (there are a number of seams there) though it kept my riding jacket from getting soaked. It also has a very light busted zipper which wasn't a problem as there are also Velcro fasteners. But the jacket takes up too much space and is far from good.

    Any answers are most welcome.
    1. NIK WAX

    2. Frog toggs are the best in my book
    2010 F800GS Full Ohlins package, '04 R1100S Replika
    '01 F650GS Wife's bike
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  3. #3
    Registered User fastdogs2's Avatar
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    Richa Jacket and Pants Solve the Rain Problem

    I purchased a Richa Spirit jacket at the Sedalia rally because I was impressed by the technology. Here is a link to the North American distributor:

    http://www.vegahelmet.com/richa-spirit-jacket.html

    While it is expensive, this jacket has performed admirably for me in the cold and wet of the winter riding season. I don't have the Richa pants because I have a pair of the BMW Streetguard Pants and those are waterproof.

    Since you already have a jacket, you may not want to invest in another. I think if I lived in the Pacific Northwest where rain is more the norm than sunny days, I would look for a solution that employed one garmet for rainy riding, without the encumberance of inner rain liners or outer rain suits.

    Bill
    BMW R1200R
    Alpine White

  4. #4
    Registered User David13's Avatar
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    Friday before last Friday, before I left for Yellowstone, I got the GS Dry jacket. I don't know if that means it's supposed to keep you dry, or if you must keep it dry.
    Anyway, in 350 miles of rain from Jackson WY to Fairview UT I had good rain all the way. And I was mostly dry.
    As to washing, I don't know, it ain't dirty yet.
    But as to dry I was, but I did notice one pocket seemed to have some water in it. So I don't know how dry it is meant to be or how.
    But I thought it worked quite fine.
    I just added the electric Gerbings gloves, which I did spray with some of the 'waterproofers'.
    And a $20 pair of plastic, made in China rain pants over my Draggin' Jeans, and I was fine.
    dc

  5. #5
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    i switched from a Hein-Gericke Kiliminjaro to a Revit & don't ever use a rain jkt-has a wet liner! Spray it while clean with repellent or Nik wax treatment as suggested. If I rode more with my Revit mesh jkt I might use a rain jkt then only.
    "If I had my life to live over, I'd dare to make more mistakes next time...I'd relax,I'd limber up... I would take fewer things seriously...take more chances... take more trips...climb more mountains...swim more rivers...eat more ice cream." Jorge Luis Borges at age 85.

  6. #6
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    Frog junk isn't the std for anything- its simply an adaptation of a material originally made for other purposes that was never intended to withstand stresses of movement and friction induced wear. They also pack too big. They are cheap enough and work OK until they fail but should really be considered high end disposables if you use rain gear a lot. Those Chinese plastic things are way less durable than that- have seen them shred from wind on the very first use and they don't vent worth a hoot..

    Like most things in life- you get what you pay for so it might come down to how much is your comfort rain riding worth to you? Do you always continue a ride in the wet or do you pull off and wait it out (we ride, always, except lightning hazards or tornados). I am still using a very old (bought some time in the 70s) LLBean GoreTex jacket but with newer Cabela's Pac-Lite GoreTex pants- most recently in 200 miles of truck sprayed rain at speeds up to 85 mph last week on our way to F.A.R.T. in Highlands, NC (intense truck traffic on I-85 south of Charlotte is very fast even in the wet- not for nervous newbies). Stayed totally dry and properly vented. (FWIW, my current rain gloves are BMW Pro Summer with the GoreTex bonded liner. Also very comfortable and liner doesn't pull out if your hands get damp before putting them on)

    External rain gear is way superior to any liner but fit around the neck, etc matters (though my RT has enough protection it is more forgiving of that than my other bikes). All we do is look for wipers on coming the other way and stop a mile or so before we hit the rain and put on the gear. Often we get lucky enough to do it under an overpass or similar, if needed because we ran into the light edge of the rain before finding a convenient stopping point. External gear is many many times easier and faster than installing a liner you might be carrying. And yes, I prefer 2 piece rain gear rather than the BMW 1 piece suit.

    Anyway, go to the Cabela's website and look up Pac-Lite stuff- the plain versions pack down extremely small. They don't always market the brighter colors- for some reason bright yellows come and go in the product line- but there is aftermarket reflective tape that can be added available from specialty suppliers.

    An alternative is some of the Tourmaster stuff at around $100 for a jacket. Well made with lots of reflective stuff and a liner that is a GoreTex copy. Has an elastic hood for under the helmet if your bike tends to wash spray down the back of your neck or for women whose hair hangs out the back of the helmet. Doesn't pack down as small as Pac-Lite- more similar to Frog stuff in volume but much better quality. SO says hers keeps her totally dry on her R1100S which has way less weather protection than my RT..(She also recommends her large Ortlieb rollup in bright yellow for keeping contents fully dry no matter how bad weather gets)
    Last edited by racer7; 10-02-2013 at 02:51 PM.

  7. #7
    Registered User lkchris's Avatar
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    The red and gray BMW 2-piece rainwear works fine and is good quality. It's often associated with the Airflow suits, as it will stop the airflow to keep you warm when you need that. They are much improved over the previous generation all black versions. I've sworn off 1-piece suits, too.
    Kent Christensen
    21482
    '12 R1200RT, '02 R1100S, '84 R80G/S

  8. #8
    Registered User David13's Avatar
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    My $20 Chinese plastic pants have taken tremendous abuse with me ripping them on and off over my giant feet.
    I have used them in ordinary to severe rain about 10 times in many different western states.
    I never got a drop on me.
    Last Wednesday, rain all day, 350 miles to the south from Jackson WY, to Fairview UT and my jeans were dry.
    So, I agree you get what you pay for. Sometimes. Sometimes you pay a bundle and get a piece of junk.
    Other times you pay peanuts, and get just what you need. And it lasts for years.
    dc

  9. #9
    Nuckin' Futs! tonyfr's Avatar
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    I use the Tourmaster Sentinel two piece suit. Has worked well for me for about 6 years. I also have the BMW ProRain 3 suit (that I've never worn; too hard to get in and out of).
    SABMWRA MOA #62
    2005 BMW R1200RT
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  10. #10
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    I'm pretty new to this, but my Horny Toads jacket and pants did real well at the Ft Ransom rally last month, and on the wet ride home. Not compact packing, but easy enough to get in and out of. The hivis is excellent for gray days too.

    I've since bought a First Gear Kilamanjaro jacket, but haven't been in rain with it. I don't go looking to ride wet most times. Reviews are pretty good though.

  11. #11
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    Rain gear

    Bought a set of FroggTogg to take on my trip to Salem this summer. Used it once for about a 5 minute light rain. Seemed OK until I rode home from the Finger lakes rally in a 1hour rain storm. FroggTogg IMPO are a waste of money. The main thing about them is the material is a paper type material. The FroggTogg fanatics will argue that they are not. THEY ARE!!!!! I spent 140 bucks for them. When just my butt got wet from sitting in water for just a short period of time I was pissed. I bought a TourMaster riding pants this fall and rode in rain for the best part of a day in rain and stayed dry. I was told by a FroggTogg customer service agent to spray the pants with a rain guard spray that MY help. MO FroggTogg waste of money.

  12. #12
    RT in NC
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    Thumbs down Pro summer gloves

    Mine absorb water like a sponge.
    Buck in Greensboro, NC
    2013 R 1200 RT Midnight Blue - traded, 2014 R 1200 RT Ebony Metallic

  13. #13
    Beastie 194084's Avatar
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    I ride a K1600 GTL so my answer might not be a universal solution. I use a military issue Goretex parka in the lighter and airier desert camo version. The green woodland camo version works too but it is built more robust/heavier but is stuffier too. They have a long zipper from the forearm to the armpit that I open up to bring in air. There is a big rainproof vent on the upper back. I wear this right over my summer mesh jacket so I'm dry, armored and well-ventilated. I can don a cheap mesh reflective vest over all of this for visibility. It's not any uglier than FroggToggs. I've ridden through the heaviest rainfall in NJ on record this past July. You can find these on eBay for about $60. Get the matching pants which can double as a winter wind-proof layer. Doesn't melt on pipes either.

  14. #14
    You stupid, fix it! r11rs94's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by fastdogs2 View Post
    I purchased a Richa Spirit jacket at the Sedalia rally because I was impressed by the technology. Here is a link to the North American distributor:

    http://www.vegahelmet.com/richa-spirit-jacket.html

    While it is expensive, this jacket has performed admirably for me in the cold and wet of the winter riding season. I don't have the Richa pants because I have a pair of the BMW Streetguard Pants and those are waterproof.

    Since you already have a jacket, you may not want to invest in another. I think if I lived in the Pacific Northwest where rain is more the norm than sunny days, I would look for a solution that employed one garmet for rainy riding, without the encumberance of inner rain liners or outer rain suits.

    Bill
    Thanks for the site info. I just looked at the video and it looks promising.
    The thing about traveling is, you never want it to end and you can't wait to get home.
    I answer to Roy, Chief, or Sarg.
    04 R-1150-RT current bike. 94 R-1100-RS74,383, Sold, 78 R-80/7, K.I.A by a D.U.I
    www.OceanStateBMWriders.com

  15. #15
    RK Ryder
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    I like my Motoport riding gear, but not the Gortex liners, so this summer I went to a local safety supply shop and bought light weight yellow/green bib rain pants and a rain jacket. They pack smaller than the Motoport Gortex (although not as small as I'd prefer) and I have ridden in all day rain and remained dry. The pants and jacket cost me about $110. On the plus side, on rainy days, daylight tends to be some reduced (), so it was my intention to be more visible under those conditions. I'd bet that the brightness of the clothes will diminish before they actually stop keeping me dry.
    Paul
    Retired and riding my RTs, the '87 K100 & the '98 R1100 !
    Treasurer of the Forest City Motorrad Club #159
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