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I currently have leather pants and leather jackets and so does the wife. I'm looking for suggestions for what type of apparel should my wife and I buy that will be lighter in weight, usable in cold, hot, mild and rainy weather, gives good protection and can be seen. In other words I'm looking for one set of gear that does it all.

I have seen other rider wearing something that looks like a piolets flight suit and it looks confortable.

Please advise.
 

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Motoport, I think thats the name they are in San Diego,
 

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+1 on the Aerostitch... it's the only suit you will ever need. Works great all year round and you don't need to carry the liners around with you in case it rains or gets cold.
 

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If you want to be seen (and you do) the wife and I bought the Olympia jackets in lime yellow. She got the 3/4 length for the extra pockets and I got the jacket length. It took awhile to convince her about the color but when I said "I don't want anyone that hits us to tell the cops they didn't see us", that sealed the deal. The liner works great to stop cold. I can't say how it works in the rain since I live in SoCal and it doesn't rain here.

For pants she bought the Olympia's and I have some Hein-Gericke with cargo pockets that both have zip-out liners that are cool to ride in.
 

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Well after many years of riding I have found the ideal allrounder ... the BMW Comfort Shell. Expensive but excellent and what impressed me first was how I felt when I put the suit on. My first thought was ... this suit was built for the fall.
 

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+1 on the Olympia 2 pc suits. The liners sre fairly warm. The suits are especially good in the summer as they are mostly mesh. The liners keep you dry in the rain which is important to me. They don't call Washington State the "Everwet State" for nothing. I also bought one size larger for me so I can wear a fIeece when it gets to 40* F. I bought the longer coat, my wife the shorter one with pants to match as I ride year round as long as there is no ice or snow.

I prefer Cordura nylon to leather as it is cooler in summer and the two piece suits don't make me like quite as much like 20 lbs of potatoes in a 5 lb sack. (Think Shamu) I used to wear a one piece suit and the heat almost killed me.

Both sets were $900 plus a few bucks. Likely a lot less if you don't buy them from the BMW dealer.

We bought the sets in silver instead of green (probably a mistake) but almost every time we are on a trip we get comments on our gear. Especially if the sidecar is along for the trip. The bike looks like a space ship and our suits look like astronaut suits is what we hear. Bullethead the Boston Terrier just looks adorable in his Doggles!
 

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One suit doesn't work down here in Louisiana (I wear the Joe Rocket mesh riding jacket) but when I lived in Pittsburgh, PA I wore a motoport suit yearound (now just in the winter). I just think that for rain protection you should carry a separate rain suit. I have a goretex 2 piece one that I got from motoport and I got it to go over my riding suit. That way I don't have to stand on the side of the road and remove my suit in the rain to put the liners in. I found that with the rain suit over the riding suit I could go till I needed the electric liners. My motoport suit is not as pretty as the areostitch ones but it was cheaper and the quality is first rate. Now saying all that if I could afford it I'd buy BMW riding clothes.
 

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Aerostich also makes a two-piece suit, called the "Darien". Some riders prefer the versatility of separate pants and jacket, some prefer the convenience of a one-piece suit ("Roadcrafter"). If I had the money I'd have one of each.

Both are available in hi-viz yellow and other colors and they can be customized - within limits - to fit you.

BMW has a large assortment of riding gear, all of it high-quality.

One thing I had to accept when looking at all these products is the cost. They are not going to be inexpensive, but they are going to be functional and much, much less than the cost of a skin graft.

Roadcrafter:


Darien:
 

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Another vote for Olympia here. Have a Mesh and Winter set.

With Gerbing heated liners I ride year round.

I just like their clothing.

I also agree you need to carry a separate rain suite. I don't know if anything short of that would have kept me dry in the NH/Vermont/Main trip this summer. Man did it pour at times.
 

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I'm sure there are many good ones out there. This weekend I had the chance to break in my new cold weather gear: Gerbings Cascade Extreme. This stuff is so good the government has a military contract with them. I was toasty warm with this stuff. I got the whole set up: Heated gloves, jacket, pants, and insoles. I got into some rain and can tell you it's waterproof also. Many gloves will say they are waterproof but they aren't. These are. I also made a new discovery about my LT...on the dash where you can see the air temperature , when it drops to 37 F an icon of a snowflake flashes. Still warm and dry !
 

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My Wife and I wear the BMW Atlantis III leather suits. They are the most comfortable riding gear I have ever owned.
You can wear them in any weather. Believe it or not they are really very comfortable when it is 90 deg....but....if you are caught in traffic...you will roast! That is the only downside.
For the area we live in ..Minnesota..they are great! FWIW. :wave
 

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A friend and myself bought the Olympia GT air at the Rally. By far the best investment in clothing I have made. I also have a Firstgear Kilimanjaro. Its not as versital as the olympia GT Air. The Gt opens up on hot days and it is great because it does not loose its protection and keeps me cool. It has additional liners for rain and 4 season. My son finally tried it and loved it and he has several other including BMW wear. His birthday is next month and he will find one next to his cake :bmw:

Obvously there are many fine manufactures that make great products. goood luck in whatever you choose.

Al
 

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I purchased the Aerostitch Roadcrafter after trying several 2 piece outfit combination s...leather/mesh/rain gear... they are expensive but after having the suit for two seasons I should have made this decision long ago and saved a good bit of $$$...I wear it year round. A bit warm when the temp is over 90.
 

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Go to your BMW dealer and try stuff on. Clothing is VERY individualistic! You live in the Central Valley and you will need both hot and cold weather gear. Shop accordingly. Check out heated vests also, they are invaluable in winter.
I live near Sacramento and I wear vented mesh in summer and BMW jackets with wind/waterproof liners in winter that I can take out if necessary. BMW has the best armor, meets European standards, compare their armor to everyone elses.
Good luck!!
 

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My gear was a bit cheaper than what most here are posting. My main jacket is a teknic that I bought on closeout from Ironpony for $99. It is the jacket I wear 95% of the time. I also have a cortec mesh jacket that I wear when it gets over 90, whoch isn't too often around here. The teknic is completely waterproof, and has been tested a number of times. The jacket was a bit stiff when I first bought it, but after two seasons, it is very comfortable, and I really like not haveing to stop to put on rain gear.

For pants I have Tourmaster HT Air 2. They were on special from Whitehorse press for $129. With the liner in, they are also completely waterproof. With the liner out, they are great on hot days with just a pair of shorts on under them.

I also have a gerbing heated jacket liner. This is by far the best piece of gear I have for comfort. Once again, I bought this when my local dealer had them for 25% off.
 

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BMWK1200LT said:
...I have seen other rider wearing something that looks like a piolets flight suit and it looks confortable.

Please advise.

This is the Columbia Phantom One Piece. Other than a real pilot's flight suit, you can't get any more "piolets flight suit" looking than this :D
 

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Here is a copy of an article I did on the Comfortshell a while back on another forum.

************************************************************************

Well this is most probably one of the most important issues for those that love it to do long distance touring with their bikes. This article is aimed at the Touring bike fraternity and I am sure that most of what I will say is not going to be of much value to those that do dirt road adventure riding mostly because the clothing I discuss is not really suitable for mud and dust.





An all too familiar scene ... traveling merrily along the winding roads of the bushveld
and suddenly an ice cold drop hits you ... thunderstorm. You stop and hastily haul out
your rain gear.

I am sure that many riders stands for hours in front of the display racks in the bike shops and they try and find that illusive piece of clothing that will be the full and final answer to all their questions. The problem for the South African Touring Rider is simply this ... you get up at 05h00 and get dressed for your long awaited trip down to the Mphumalanga Lowveld. It is late April and Johannesburg is cold, very cold. On the bike the temperature will be below zero and you grin as you feel the warm and fuzzy thermal underwear wrap around your skin. Next you climb into your Tourance suit ... yep you are financially secure and costs of bike gear is something that you do not really pay attention to. The mere fact that it looks good and seems to be able to do what it is designed for is enough reason for you to buy it.

Your eyes go over the collection of jackets in the wide cupboard and you shake your head. Reality is that basically every piece of clothing in that cupboard is specifically designed for specific conditions.

As the bike heads out onto the N4 you smile because the indicated ambient temperature is 3 degrees Celsius and the heated grips and seat has turned your Tourance suit into a snug cocoon, protecting you against the wind chill and making you actually enjoy the trip. Here and there the long grass is covered with frost. By the time you go past Belfast the sun is up and the the clear blue sky indicates that the Lowveld will be great. At Milly's you stop for fuel and a snack and as you stand around waiting for your change from the pump jockey you unzip the jacket, it was getting quite warm in that suit now.

By the time you reach the bottom of the Schoemanskloof you are actually sweating in that suit and you are really uncomfortable. The temperature is in the middle twenties and it is still climbing as you go deeper into the Lowveld. By the time you reach Hazyview it is cooking, 34 degrees and no wind. As you fill the bike up you can feel the sweat running down your body and that thermal underpants is no longer your friend. You hurry the pump guy up and you hit the road, it is too hot to even consider stopping for a light snack, all you can think of is to get to your guest house in Graskop and get out of that suit.


You started the day with something along these lines ... good for Antartica.


Now you need something like this ... cool and light.

The winding R355 has lost most of it's charm as you tear down it, desperately trying to get some wind on you but it is of no avail because the air is hot and humid. You feel a sense of relief as you notice the clouds on the escarpment and you rush on towards Kowyn's Pass. Well your prayers are answered, suddenly the heavens open and the rain pours down on the simmering Lowveld, soaking everything and bringing some coolness. Fortunately the Tourance is really weatherproof and you stay dry inside that suit.

You ride into Graskop and park the bike. Before you even open the chalet door you are already out of the jacket because the storm was short lived and now it is getting hot again. Up here it is much better than at Hazyview but it was still hot.

I am sure many of you can relate to that little story and I am also sure many of you have experienced it some way or another.

During November 2007 I was in the Cape and my bike needed a new tyre. Hamman Motorrad was running a sale on some bike gear and the owner showed me the BMW Comfortshell jacket. To my surprise the only one they had fitted me perfectly and once I fitted it and felt how it sits it was all over. Fortunately I had a spare cargo net in the top box so the jacket was nicely folded and tied onto the backseat.

Many claims are being made about the Comfortshell and I was a bit skeptic. The next morning we rode out to Melkbosstrand and there was a cold wind blowing. The first moment of astonishment came as we turned into the wind and I could feel how the jacket shrunk to fit tight over my chest. It is claimed that the fibers in this garment is intelligent enough to sense what is expected of them and then they adapt. Well I experienced how they shrunk up to shut the wind out.

During December I participated in the Swaziland Stone Butt run and on this trip I rode in temperatures that varied from 8 degrees to 34 degrees. I went through numerous thunderstorms and the jacket did exactly what the salesman told me. I must say that at temperatures above 28 degrees the Airflow jackets are much cooler.


The jackets comes in black and a bright blue.

The jacket has 4 vents, two in front and two on the back and when it gets hot these do help a lot to keep you cool. The jacket also have a very well designed strap system around the wrists that makes it possible to really set the cuff correctly for your wrist. Once tied it slips easily into most gloves.

After around 3,000 kms with the jacket in a wide range of conditions except extreme cold I was happy that I bought the jacket and then two weeks ago I splurged again and bought the trousers. I have traveled in rain and in temperatures ranging from 6 degrees Celsius to 29 degrees Celsius with the pants and it was comfortable throughout.


I like the cut of the trousers and the jacket. The trousers have good leg movement and
it has a zipper and velcro strap at the bottom to open up for your boots.

In my mind this is the ideal suit to buy, especially if you are looking for ONE suit ... the Comfort Shell is as close as I have seen to a Mc Gyver Suit. What really impressed me is the extent of the body armor in the suit. This suit was not only designed for the ride but definitely also for the fall.


The suit is designed with some style and it it is tapered for a snug fit.

This suit is not cheap but it covers basically the whole range, heat, cold and wet. I think that in extreme cold you will need thermal underwear to provide some buffer between your body and the jacket because the material is thin and as such I am sure the cold on the outside will be transmitted through that thin layer.

In conclusion I am super impressed with the suit and my initial thoughts that it was too expensive has been dispelled by the performance of the suit.
 

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Well , that is a good question .

Snip>>I currently have leather pants and leather jackets and so does the wife. I'm looking for suggestions for what type of apparel should my wife and I buy that will be lighter in weight, usable in cold, hot, mild and rainy weather, gives good protection and can be seen. In other words I'm looking for one set of gear that does it all. <<

My wife & I use to were BMW touring two piece leather suits , but we wore very little under them . If it was cold we put some http://www.wintersilks.com long john's on under the leathers . If it rained we put a Bellsteff suit on over the leather's ....

Now I wear a Aerostich Roadcrafter , & my wife wants the top put on the sidecar if it isn't weather that she likes .

Aerostitch made my suit Extra Short & Extra Squatty ... It was a size 48 that they made the legs 3" shorter , the gut pile 6" bigger , & I think there was something in the arms that was changed too...but ...

The Aerostitch over my street clothes is good rain or shine 50 degrees up to around 90 , ...cooler & you need more clothes on under it .

...Anyway ...back to the question >> lighter in weight, usable in cold, hot, mild and rainy weather, gives good protection and can be seen.<<.. that depends on , Are you wearing street clothes on under your leather now ? If you are , it would be hard to beat Aerostitch ,it is probably lighter that the leather , & can handle what ever comes it's way . . If you are in you undies under the leathers , you can't get any lighter , but you need a lot of stuff with you when ever the weather changes . .
 
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