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Women's Topics For questions which are specific to women, including travel-related challenges to do with menstruation, contraception, she-wees, and any other questions that 'women don't dare to ask', pros and cons of riding pillion, women travelling solo, safety concerns, etc. This is not a Ladies Bar, this forum is open to all, including guys who would like information for their significant other.
Please post questions which are of interest to both genders in the relevant forum, where they will be more likely to get a quick response.
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  #1  
Old 3 Mar 2013
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girlfriend warmer needed!!

It's been a while since I last posted any think on here, as I met a girl (jess) 2 and a half years ago and my aspirations for a year long road trip from the uk to auz soon started to become a dream.

the problem was not that she hated bikes, (far from it she loves being on the back) but she couldn't stay warm on the back. she's not one for moaning, so half the time when we stop, she says she's not cold and trying not to shiver, and the rest of the time she's shivering and telling me shes not cold. I always tell her to tap me on the shoulder when she feels cold, but I usually don't realize how cold I am until we stop.

the solution we have found so far is to stick a hot water bottle in her jacket, but i would like to take her for a 2 week tour of Europe this summer, but i don't think its all that practical to stick with the hot water bottle.

has anyone got any ideas?? I know on one of the DVD's (I think "on the road") mentions about heated underwear, but which ones? I've heard some of them are a waste of money?
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  #2  
Old 3 Mar 2013
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Get a heated vest. Place that just over the shirt, that will be under the jumper, jacket etc - you want it as close to the skin as possible .. but with say one layer between it and the skin. That way the heat is close to the skin, and has lots of insulation between it and the cold.

Get a heat controller for it... you'll need that to get the right heating.

Brands? The one I have is out of production, and was made in OZ. So no help there. Still works.

Once you have one for her, you'll want one for yourself.
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  #3  
Old 3 Mar 2013
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The obvious solution is as follows: I will contract to warm your girlfriend on demand, night or day, anyplace within 400 miles of my home. Just call.

This being impractical, electrics are probably the answer. I assume you've already tried clothing her appropriately--that means lots of layers, functional water-and-windproofing, etc. Some pillions (and riders) are so attached to looking streamlined that they fail to take advantage of the undeniable advantages to the Michelin Man look. This is best viewed as a choice freely made: "I'd rather look sleek and thin than be warm." Electrics manage to sidestep the issue nicely.

Electrics do fail a lot. I've never bothered with them in part because whenever I ride with people who rely on electrics they've always got some sort of issue with them, usually involving connectors: "I'd be really warm right now except that the connectors on my heated clothing got fried last month and I'm waiting for replacements; do you mind if we stop at this pub for a couple of hours so I can warm up?"

Electrics also require a bike with sufficient stator output. If riding a bike which is marginal in this respect, think it through carefully.

Hope that's helpful.

Mark
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  #4  
Old 3 Mar 2013
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I'm afraid the hot water bottle just will not work. I know from experience, once the water gets cold it stays cold and so will she.
Don't bother with cotton shirts they don't work either. On the basis you kit up and warm up and sweat/perspire and then it gets cold,(cotton holds the moisture) and so will you and she.
worry not there are answers, and in the end only you can decide which is the best for you and she.
A one piece waterproof will stop the wind getting through and help keep body tempreture up.
Merino wool works both ways = cooler and/or warmer, dependent on the weather at the time.

Electrical gear also works. I use Kies stuff and am happy with that stuff, as I'm an all year motorcyclist. Kies do an independent battery so you don't have to rely on the bike for power, and she can stay warm off the bike also.

Good food in the stomach is well and far best to keep the energy/heat levels up.
Porridge for breakfast goes a long way. Stuff like energy drinks and chocolate, although they sound ideal, are not.
Spring is almost here, so you might start at the cheaper end, Liddle are doing some half decent underwear right now.

Stay warm. stay happy.

Socks

Oh yeh, don't know why but It appears to me womens feet get cold a lot easier than mens, and no matter the tempreture you might feel one can almost always find she thinks it s 3 degrees colder.
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  #5  
Old 3 Mar 2013
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I had a problem like this some time ago. To solve it I brought a one piece rain suit. If it keep's the rain out it will keep the wind out. And that's what keep's you cold or stop's you warming up. Cotton inner glove's go a long way to keep her hand's warm. The one thing that was a problem where her feet. Besides some over size boot's and a couple of layer's of sock's, Plastic bag's can help. There is a skill in keeping warm, something you have to learn. Or ride where the sun shine's. That work's for me.
John933
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  #6  
Old 4 Mar 2013
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Thanks for the advice Guys, I think its going to help

Quote:
Originally Posted by Warin View Post
Get a heated vest. Place that just over the shirt, that will be under the jumper, jacket etc - you want it as close to the skin as possible .. but with say one layer between it and the skin. That way the heat is close to the skin, and has lots of insulation between it and the cold.

Get a heat controller for it... you'll need that to get the right heating.

Brands? The one I have is out of production, and was made in OZ. So no help there. Still works.

Once you have one for her, you'll want one for yourself.
So would some think like a thermal base layer do, or just a wicking type of base layer like one used for hot weather?

Quote:
Originally Posted by markharf View Post
The obvious solution is as follows: I will contract to warm your girlfriend on demand, night or day, anyplace within 400 miles of my home. Just call.

This being impractical, electrics are probably the answer. I assume you've already tried clothing her appropriately--that means lots of layers, functional water-and-windproofing, etc. Some pillions (and riders) are so attached to looking streamlined that they fail to take advantage of the undeniable advantages to the Michelin Man look. This is best viewed as a choice freely made: "I'd rather look sleek and thin than be warm." Electrics manage to sidestep the issue nicely.

Electrics do fail a lot. I've never bothered with them in part because whenever I ride with people who rely on electrics they've always got some sort of issue with them, usually involving connectors: "I'd be really warm right now except that the connectors on my heated clothing got fried last month and I'm waiting for replacements; do you mind if we stop at this pub for a couple of hours so I can warm up?"

Electrics also require a bike with sufficient stator output. If riding a bike which is marginal in this respect, think it through carefully.

Hope that's helpful.

Mark
Thanks for the offer, but I don't think I can get 3 on a bike :P

originally when she first started going on the back I gave her my gear (it was way to big for her but offered better protection of my spare smaller gear) and although she would have 2 warm jumpers a coat 2 long sleeved t shirts on she was still cold. I think the problem was wind proofing!!

she has got some second hand leathers but they are probably a bit to sleek.

I think I will defiantly look into the drain that it will cause on the bike (if i get plug in ones)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Socks View Post
I'm afraid the hot water bottle just will not work. I know from experience, once the water gets cold it stays cold and so will she.
Don't bother with cotton shirts they don't work either. On the basis you kit up and warm up and sweat/perspire and then it gets cold,(cotton holds the moisture) and so will you and she.
worry not there are answers, and in the end only you can decide which is the best for you and she.
A one piece waterproof will stop the wind getting through and help keep body tempreture up.
Merino wool works both ways = cooler and/or warmer, dependent on the weather at the time.

Electrical gear also works. I use Kies stuff and am happy with that stuff, as I'm an all year motorcyclist. Kies do an independent battery so you don't have to rely on the bike for power, and she can stay warm off the bike also.

Good food in the stomach is well and far best to keep the energy/heat levels up.
Porridge for breakfast goes a long way. Stuff like energy drinks and chocolate, although they sound ideal, are not.
Spring is almost here, so you might start at the cheaper end, Liddle are doing some half decent underwear right now.

Stay warm. stay happy.

Socks

Oh yeh, don't know why but It appears to me womens feet get cold a lot easier than mens, and no matter the tempreture you might feel one can almost always find she thinks it s 3 degrees colder.
thanks socks so I'm taking it that energy drinks don't make you warm due to the fast releasing sugars in them right?

the keis stuff looks good, I will give it a thought. what kind of things do you use, the fleece, body warmer? the glove inserts look like a good idea. The heated grips on my bike lasted 1 winter before they broke (I figured if they where oxford they would last longer)

That is true, my mother use to always complain the house was cold, but yet me and my dad would be sat sweating in shorts... strange

Quote:
Originally Posted by John933 View Post
I had a problem like this some time ago. To solve it I brought a one piece rain suit. If it keep's the rain out it will keep the wind out. And that's what keep's you cold or stop's you warming up. Cotton inner glove's go a long way to keep her hand's warm. The one thing that was a problem where her feet. Besides some over size boot's and a couple of layer's of sock's, Plastic bag's can help. There is a skill in keeping warm, something you have to learn. Or ride where the sun shine's. That work's for me.
John933
I think that's sound advice, plus a rain suites are cheap so don't think it will do any harm giving it a go. plus we should invest in some, went to go watch BSB in oulton park in 2011, both got home to empty our boots of water. that was her first taste of camping on the bike.


I think from the advice so far a rain suite will be on the shopping list as well as some new touring gear. will be looking into Keis as well. Does any one recommend a make or model of female touring gear? at the moment I'd rather her have some think with good protection, over any think else. I usually go for textiles as there so comphy I could live in them. any one know of any good touring gear leather or textiles?
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  #7  
Old 4 Mar 2013
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The Warm & Safe heated jackets are awesome. I love mine. The cut for women is also perfect. very warm and top quality. Their Ladies heated gloves not so much warm but as she is pillion maybe you can pass on those.

I had my WnS for years. It is a bit pricey but will last.
You will need to get the heat controller as well. Absolutely necessary. Can fit in a pocket.
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  #8  
Old 5 Mar 2013
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I find I can dress to be warm when standing still.

I can dress to be warm on the bike - but that is very bulky when it is snowing. And it does restrict movement a lot.

I can use a heated vest together with what I ware to be warm when standing still and be warm and toasty on the bike (yes even in the snow). And I am then much more comfortable (because of the reduced clothing bulk) eg going inside to eat, walking, fueling up.

-----------------
If you are going to buy wet weather gear specifically for keeping warm then a one piece suit would keep out more drafts ... they are not as easy to get into and out of .. making toilet stops more difficult. This would be an additional layer.

Most Europeans settle on riding jackets and pants that are both protective and waterproof. Saves stopping to put on the waterproofs for a short shower, or trying to ride through a short shower to find it is a rain storm and being wet before putting on the waterproofs!
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  #9  
Old 5 Mar 2013
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I have an Exo2 waistcoat and find it really good. Haven't bought the controller yet, so it's full on or off, but it is very effective.

With that and heated grips, I find it's quite pleasant even down to -4.

So long as you can keep the wind out at neck, wrists and lower back you should be fine.
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  #10  
Old 5 Mar 2013
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I have to say most of the advice given so far is good.

"the keis stuff looks good, I will give it a thought. what kind of things do you use, the fleece, body warmer? the glove inserts look like a good idea. The heated grips on my bike lasted 1 winter before they broke (I figured if they where oxford they would last longer)"

In terms of electrical warmth Kies have done me well the last two winters.
I don't like handle bar heaters personally. The glove inserts even without them turned on I find comfortably warm (and I feel the cold believe me) and these are worn inside a two finger type glove, for winter (H Gerick) But hey I have only experianced the Kies gear =body warmer, gloves and insoles. I know there are other productions along the same lines, and I guess they get better year on year. Like I suggested, spring is almost upon us, so maybe save for electrical trickery next year and invest in other kit now. Like merino socks and base layers, stop the drafts and rain, and your more than half way.

Go to as many motorcycle shops and ask as many questions as you can whilst trying on as much if not more kit than you.... well just get on and do it.

This bit is a bit off topic but! try and purchase in the shop, otherwise there will be no shops left soon. Wish we could sit in the bar and chat with drink in hand.

Enjoy
Socks

PS Don't ever let the dreams leave, take them with you.

Last edited by Socks; 5 Mar 2013 at 00:49. Reason: coz I can.
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  #11  
Old 5 Mar 2013
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ricsy3 View Post
Thanks for the offer, but I don't think I can get 3 on a bike :P
Well then, I guess I'll have to hang on to my day job....
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  #12  
Old 7 Mar 2013
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Thumbs up Chilly Rider

Nicsy
I don't know why it is, but many of us women do feel the cold a lot more than the blokes. Especially so when we're on a bike and that's speaking as a rider and as a pillion passenger. I layer a LOT- the Michelin Man has nothing on me with my 6 layers. I've also travelled quite a bit and crossed most of the world's mountain ranges in the process so I have had a fair amount of cold weather riding.
Tucking clothes in is key to that as well, I'm a firm believer in tucking vest into knickers. That's probably my cheapest suggestion!!
Merino wool base layer is THE best but also pricey.
The pillion passenger has a more passive and less dynamic role than the rider, there is less moving around and therefore less heat created by muscle movement.
The rider on the front will provide a wind shield depending on the height of the rear seat.
A heated layer is really the only way to ensure a chilly woman does not feel the cold on a long ride - if your bike's battery can take it, which it should do if it's big enough to carry two of you.
Although the advice is to keep the heated layer closer to the body, I need several layers actually tucked in UNDERNEATH the heated jacket to ensure it works OK, believe me I have tried all sorts of combinations (including the hot water bottle for shorter trips).
I would suggest you see if you can borrow someone else's heated jacket for an afternoon's ride and get the lovely Jess to try it- see what she thinks of it. I use a Hein Gericke heated jacket under my main bike jacket which is great but again not the cheapest- remember the key factor here is that a warm girlfriend is a happy girlfriend!!

as for women's bike clothing which is also warm, I always seem to end up with bloke's stuff so that I can fit layers underneath, much of the women's clothing is often made to look as streamlined as possible and so isn't always conducive to being warm.
I hope this all helps. Good luck in your search for an answer and good luck in your trip across Europe.
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  #13  
Old 1 Apr 2013
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Always bring at least one extra pair of socks! If the feet get at all damp from sweat or rain, she's doomed (and then so are you. ). Even if the feet aren't damp, changing into a cushy pair of socks half way through the ride can really rejuvenate her/you. Never skimp on price. Wool is great, so are thick thermal-like ones. If you can find ones that have no-skid bottoms for walking on slick floors, buy them! The material has to be thick enough to attach the non-skid stuff, and that's what you're looking for.
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  #14  
Old 23 Apr 2013
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Come to Africa. You can ride in some areas i.e Namibia, South Africa, Zambia, etc in winter in 30 degrees Celsius. :-)
Northern Cape 40 degrees plus.
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  #15  
Old 25 Apr 2013
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Heated Seat

If you get a heated seat this is one item that goes a long way to helping keep a person warm. Consider the area that is being heated and the about of blood flow through that area.

That contributes to keeping the core warm.

A heated vest/jacket is the nest step up from this in effective heating of the body.

Windproofing the gear is also the first step in reducing heat loss.

Basically the first step is reducing heat loss, next is to augment heat produced. Final is heat retention (insulation).

Good luck.
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