stretch

Heated Women's Motorcycle Gear, Updated

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A few years ago I wrote this post about heated motorcycle gear options for women.

I thought it would be a good time to update since we have NEW options for those of us looking for 12V (plug into your bike) heat. 12V(olt) heat offers the most heating to anyone who rides a 50-75mph on a motorcycle. Because 7V heat is great to go to a football game / fall festival / walk the dog.

But when you want something that will provide the most heat possible and keep you warm all day riding at highway speeds, you need 12V gear.

Keep in mind that this means you need a rock solid outer jacket to wear over these new Olympia options. Something along the lines of this Rev’it Horizon Jacket. If you haven’t even started there, then we need to talk offline.

When I wrote that post 3 years ago, there was only 1 option for 12V gear for us; WarmnSafe. But now we have another !

Hello North Bay Heated Jacket and Pants by Olympia.

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I haven’t tried them on yet, or ridden in them but I’m very excited about the prospect of another gear line just for women. Especially 12V gear! You can find a ton of 7V products on the market because there are far more women doing everyday activities like going to games, bicycling, walking to work, etc.

But far fewer ride motorcycles! (which many of us are trying to change).

So this is a huge deal. WarmnSafe has always provided options for us and they still offer 2 different jackets, the Gen 3 and the Gen 4. I have a Gen3 Liner but I am tempted to upgrade to the Gen 4.

I’ll have to see how these Olympia compare in terms of fitment and comfort.

The reason I love my Warmnsafe Jacket is because it fit me so well. It’s stretchy and fitted, and was always comfortable under my gear. I always loved the fact that it also heated my collar, sleeves AND neck.

The North Bay doesn’t do sleeves. That’s also the reason why I never did vests, because I always needed full sleeve warmth too. I know for many people that if they’re core is warm enough then the sleeves won’t matter but that simply isn’t the case for me. Even with the best baselayers, and the warmest winter jackets to block as much as wind as well.

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The two things to note about this outfit:

  1. All connections are Coaxial and work with pretty much everyone else (Gerbing, Warmnsafe, Hotwired, etc.)

  2. The controller is a single button on both garments! NO external controllers!

The button is raised so you can feel it through your main jacket. And it seems like an easy reach whether you’re right or left handed.

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And I know what half (yes, that many of you) of you are thinking. Pink? Yep, even I can get past it because it’s such a great jacket. I got my hands on one of the men’s ones today and if the woman’s jacket is the same material and stretch comfort, you are going to love it. My theory is that it will have a similar fit profile as their regular riding gear; more on the generous/American fit. I’ll report back as soon as I have a fit update.

I would also like to mention that the new Gerbing Jackets are also a great option for the curviest of women out there, I would say ~45”-55” chests and/or waists. For example, you’re 5’8” and your bust is 45” and your waist is 42”. this will have plenty of room around your waist and just enough room over your hips. Not quite a full woman’s fitment for hips but since the waist has a little give around the hem and the roomy fit, it’s a great option for many women out there.

Like I said, they run VERY boxy. Even for the men, the Gerbing lines run big and almost everyone sizes down.

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Another bonus that I discovered recently is this AMAZINGGGG PORTABLE BATTERY with a Coaxial Input! (e.g. you can plug your heated jacket liner into it!)

Antigravity Micro-Start XP-1

Aside from this bonus feature, it also acts a fully portable jump starter for your motorcycle, car or truck! We have the smaller one just for our bikes, the Sport Power Supply. It totally works and fits easily under most reasonable seats.

So for all the hardcore women riders out there that need heated gear for your next trip to Alaska, NovaScotia or Canada I hope this is works out for you. Please, report back!

Are these motorcycle pants going to fit?

revit marryl womens motorcycle leather pants How do you know if a pair of leather pants / gloves / boots or jacket is going to fit or stretch? 

This question gets asked often as well. How do I know how much more it's going to stretch? It's difficult to say, really. But I can tell you that for the most part, leather can and does stretch. Especially when it come to motorcycle gear.

I recently acquired an older Rev'it pant (Marryls, pictured above) because I found them on eBay and couldn't pass them up. They're the BEST leather women's motorcycle pants I've ever seen on women of varied shapes/sizes. It's sad that Rev'it discontinued them here, because they're absolutely incredible. Of course, you can still get the fabulous Gear 2's but if you want something all leather without venting, these were a great option.

As soon as I tried to get them on, they were definitely difficult to zip up. Like, couldn't.zip.up.at.all. Like many of us do, I gave up, took them off and hoped I could drop 10lbs by the time I bought a motorcycle.

The problem was that they fit everywhere else SO damn good. I mean Perfect. I admit, I like my gear SNUG. I don't want a saggy butt, or saggy waist, or saggy anything. And that's generally how you want your gear to fit, if you can. It's a lot like clothes, when you wear bigger sizes you simply look bigger. Of course, it's also directly tied to safety as the placement of your body armor needs to be close to the body and immoveable in case of an accident.

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I eventually slid them on and as soon as I pulled them over my hips, the stretching process started. Slowly I was able to pull the zipper up all the way (after 2-3 minutes or so) and it started to immediately feel better. You can see in the pic above that I could barely button the top, because the flap is showing. This is why it's SO important for you to try leathers on for MORE than 30 seconds. Of course, don't forget those crucial baselayers to make the process even smoother.  Another 5 minutes later and the waist/hip started to feel more comfortable to where I could sit in a chair, lean forward and start typing. I was even able to button it on the tighter (inner) button at the waist.

I know they're not done, and I have more stretching to go. I'll probably get about ~half size of break in and then they'll be loose enough to hopefully wear my winter weight thermals. It's been almost an hour and they feel SO much better than when I first started.

So don't give up, just give it a few minutes.. maybe 30..

Breaking in new Motorcycle Boots

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I recently acquired these cute TCX X-Street Waterproof Motorcycle Shoes so I could have something stylish in this horrible snowy, cold winter we've been having.

I don't plan to ride in them, they're definitely a casual shoe for me. But, I wanted to share my experience breaking these in! It wasn't easy and definitely a little painful along the way. I tried them on and they felt pretty good. A little pressure across the toebox (width wise) but not too bad. I only wore them in the store for a few minutes. But as soon as I put them on the next day to wear to work, I completely forgot about this whole break in thing. (It's been a couple years since I've had to go through this).

And my feet were SCREAMING at me the whole time. 'WHY DID YOU BUY THESE? YOU'RE KILLING US?!' I was worried, a little worried. Okay, *really* worried. But, I knew I had to stick it out. The pressure wasn't so bad that I got bunions or anything, but they were just uncomfortable after 2-3 hours of wearing them. I just assumed that I wouldn't be able to wear them all day and would have to use them as cute, going out shoes. A dinner... a movie.. maybe some shopping.

But after a few weeks (not wearing them every day to work, but at least every couple), they fully broke in and I realized one day that my feet weren't killing me like they used to. These particular shoes were also very very wide in the heel and ran a full size large. I'm normally a Euro 37, US 6.5 but I had to go down to a Euro 36. With such a loose ankle, I realized that I needed to lace them very snug around the ankles. Otherwise my feet would slide forward and smush my foot into the toe box.

As soon as I laced them up nice and tight, it made a Huge difference because my ankles were sitting right where they should be so my feet weren't moving back and forth inside the boots. Remember, you don't want any forward and backward movement of your foot when it's inside the boot. And it's totally normal for your toe to be close to the edge of the toebox as long as it's not pushing forward into the very end as you walk.

I know breaking in gear is a b*tch, but it's SO worth it in the end. Try not to size yourself in the store (when it comes to leather), but size yourself the way you want it to fit a month from now.