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Riding under the scorching heat in the USA; Cooling vests anybody? out of the box advice?


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Bought an extremly airy jacket from Rukka and a pant from Spidi last year, never wear it before it's 25c +. Getting home late afternoon, 20c = cold. Had 43c in Barcelona 2001 with nordic riding gear, my Bloody H. After 37c it gets hotter the faster you go.
Cheers Tom
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2 hours ago, docc said:

 

(@Pressureangle, I thought your AeroStich to be a one-piece?)

 

My standard black suit is two-piece. The gray one I had last year is one-piece. I much prefer the two piece. I use the two-piece as one piece most of the time, it's a pain to zip and unzip, nearly impossible while wearing it.

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From a guy who moved from Houston to Phoenix . . .

Evaporative cooling vest work OK, IF the humidity is low.  Pretty much rules them out in Houston. In Zonie land, a wet vest lasts an hour or less. So, you ride with 2.  One on your body and the other in a ziploc bag filled with water in the tank bag. (You are carrying water with you as you ride in Arizona).  Pull over about every hour and swap.  This is the only good solution on long trips.

Another lesser known option is phase change gel cooling vests.  I get mine here -    https://glaciertek.com/

These don't last as long in Zonie heat, maybe 1/2 an hour.  BUT, there's no water involved. You put the gel packs in the fridge or freezer before the ride. The gel magically maintains a constant temperature as you wear it.  I used these when commuting to work.  Plenty of cooling for a shorter trip and you don't have a wet shirt when you arrive at work.  Evap vests will water stain your clothes. 

I have both kinds and use them based on the ride.  Or just run in the heat, staying hydrated.  I have been in Zonie land for 30 years now.

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I never thought this would work but it does.. I wear a canvas oilskin with a mesh liner. And Im in Tucson. Air goes through it but still good for the hot rainy monsoons.. 

 

Mine's a Merlin. 

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3 minutes ago, bbolesaz said:

BTW, I'll take 115 in Phoenix over 95 in Houston any day.

+1 to my Arizona breathren.. And you got a Scura which shows you are a man of good taste. 

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I remember living in Phoenix for 2 years back in 1993-1995, a memorable summer of 118 for 3 days straight seems positively cool by comparison to the heat waves you guys have had this year with days above 120F.  That's just not humane anymore when it gets down to 100F at night as the cool spot!  When golf tee times at 5 am are the most popular of the day...something is wrong!

One thing I did enjoy in Phoenix/Scottsdale are those misting systems around everywhere outside you can walk near shops/restaurants.

Riding thru Texas, New Mexico and Colorado in mid Summer on a trip to the Guzzi Nat'l Rally in John Day, we were going thru 3 full 3 liter camelbacks per day just to stay hydrated (partial Gatorade, no sugar mixed with ice and water to keep some electrolytes, or at times with Noom tablets)...just brutal riding conditions...but using the full non mesh jacket instead of the mesh helped a lot along with the other tricks posted above.

Good post on Heat Stroke vs. Heat Exhaustion above...

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I concur with all those who have experience with high temps and high humidity.

I have workrf in the Libyan desert, in Saudi Arabia, in Chad where temperatures are higher than what we have here, but when its dry, it is bearable if we could compare working with riding a motorcycle wearing protective gear. Well working you wear PPE, but excepted for flame retardant textile, you are more or less fine.

I don't think there is any solution just yet. All that we have revolves around mitigating the heat, but we don't have much in terms of riding in "good" conditions.

Hydrating does not last long. And if you start making stops to refresh, you end up stopping at every gas station to cool down.

Not withstanding that when you get to your destination, the first requirement is to change clothes and take a shower...

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Anyone in New Joysey or the NYC metro area knows heat and humidity. I was there when it was 96F and 95% - clearly not the worst. Still, almost had to be surgically removed from a vinyl sofa. And I was 26 then. It would prove fatal today.  

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And can I just rant? What the hell are these manufacturers thinking when the majority of mesh gear is black?

I finally got some good vented dirt bike pants that are light grey - reflecting the heat make a big difference compared to the black pair I settled on before (due to availability).

I have a Bright yellow mesh jacket, that still has a lot of black on it... and I can feel the difference on the black parts vs the yellow parts. WTF? Why is it so hard to find other than black?  And for the record, I know it can be found... but it's uncommon. Seems like if staying cool is the goal, somebody would say, "Why are we making all this black mesh stuff? What about some light colors?"

OK end of rant. But part of staying cool is: try to wear lighter colors.

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  • docc changed the title to Riding under the scorching heat in the USA; Cooling vests anybody? out of the box advice?
10 minutes ago, Scud said:

And can I just rant? What the hell are these manufacturers thinking when the majority fo mesh gear is black?

I finally got some good vented dirt bike pants that are light grey - reflecting the heat make a big difference compared to the black pair I settled on before (due to availability).

I have a Bright yellow mesh jacket, that still has a lot of black on it... and I can feel the difference on the black parts vs the yellow parts. WTF? Why is so hard to find other than black?  And for the record, I know it can be found... but it's uncommon. Seems like if staying cool is the goal, somebody would say, "Why are we making all this black mesh stuff? What about some light colors?"

OK end of rant. But part of staying cool is try wear lighter colors.

Agreed. My treasured Olympia ventilated, and armored, one-piece is silver. About as reflective as it gets.

Imagine that - docc thinks silver is a good idea . . .  :rolleyes::grin:

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I have bought several pairs of motorcycle jeans and two pair of cargo pants from Brosh Tech in Tel Aviv, Israel. They specialize in hot weather gear and kevlar panels in their clothing. They made one pair 4" longer in the inseam for me. Here is a small block rider who rates a couple of their products.

 

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