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Thread: Favorite Hot Weather Jacket, "To mesh or not to mesh"?

  1. #16
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Sep 2008
    Wilmington, NC
    That IBA article should be required reading for anyone who does hot weather riding- if one wants to understand the science behind possible gear choices.

    Evap cooling works fine in many places, especially in drier western states, but as one approaches saturated humidity, it works less well.

    There is another choice which I prefer when doing full days in near saturated conditions- it is the Veskimo. The motorcycle adaptation of a racing cagers ice cooled suit. Needs to be used under clothing that blocks wind, not full open mesh....Has to be filled twice during a long day but ice is no problem- cheap at any gas station..Like A/C for your bike- except your head will still get hot unless you do something about that also.

  2. #17
    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2006

    West is Best:)

    No doubt living in the far West has advantages to evap cooloing. I rode across WVa. a couple years ago and being from California, jusr rode thru a few storms as I may do in my home part of the country. WHAT a mistake! I got soaked and stayed that way all day in that humid clime. Never dried. I grew up in Virginia but forgot! Its takes about mid Kansas West, up and down the USA to make the evap cooling thing work best. The very thin garments today as in Under Armor and the like are the ticket to cool, or even cool vests. Some of the black apparel today ARE cool black tech and reflect the sun heat. I have a couple just bought made by UA, nice. Expensive T's, but nice. I grit my teeth buying these, but found I will go back for more. Randy

  3. #18
    MOA,ABC,AMA,NEF,BREC,CCA brownie's Avatar
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    Oct 2003
    Pensacola, FL

    Thumbs up Motoport Air Mesh

    I wear the MP Air Mesh Jacket & Pants....LONG sleeve LD comfort shirt, or wicking fiber shirt + camelback with ice+water in 100 F temps on long rides......
    Words to Ride by: Patience, Anticipate, Paranoia
    Shep Brown MOA 27510
    "Igor" 82 RS "Inga" 04RT
    Pensacola, Flairider

  4. #19
    RK Ryder
    Join Date
    Sep 2005
    London, Ontario
    Quote Originally Posted by brownie View Post
    I wear the MP Air Mesh Jacket & Pants....LONG sleeve LD comfort shirt, or wicking fiber shirt + camelback with ice+water in 100 F temps on long rides......
    me too, plus wetting down the shirt, the helmet liner and a dickie.

    The Motoport has lots of armour, so even though it is mesh, it seems to allow just the right amount of air flow.
    Retired and riding my RTs, the '87 K100 & the '98 R1100 !
    Niagara Riders #298 & Knights of the Roundel #333

  5. #20
    Registered User
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    Aug 2012
    Grand Rapids, mi

    Tour master air intake mesh

    I like a 3/4 length jacket for most riding, but if I know it is likely to Be very warm I take my Air Intake jacket - mesh, with goretex and insulated layers if needed. Feels quite protective and is very breezy.


  6. #21
    Peter D dunc723's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Nashville, TN
    I just got a Joe Rocket mesh jacket with a liner. So far the hottest day I've used it is high 80s, but it's very comfortable, and I can see it being pretty good even approaching triple digits. The only problem I have is intermediate temps - in the high 60s to low 70s it's a little too cool to go without the liner, but the liner is almost too warm. I'm experimenting with other garments under the jacket - nylon pullover, fleece, etc.
    When life throws you a curve, lean into it. (Seen on a t-shirt at MotoGP Indy)
    '06 R1200RT, '12 F650GS, '04 K1200GT (Sold)

  7. #22
    2011 R1200RT ka5ysy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2006
    Prairieville, Louisiana

    Motoport, Olympia and Bohn armor.

    Motoport makes great stuff in their Airmesh Kevlar II line. The tri-armor and quad-armor also have air holes in them that seem to negate the overheating I note below. One thing I will warn readers about: once you invest in Motoport gear, everything else makes you feel naked and unprotected. It is that good !

    I also like the Olympia jacket in hi-vis yellow/orange. It rides well in south Louisiana heat and humidity, and unless they are blind, everyone sees me. The bright hi-vis colors are also much cooler than any black or other dark colors, which helps a great deal.

    The Olympia overpants are OK but the "armor" leaves a lot to be desired. I recently got the idea to use the Bohn body armor inserts in them. The knee armor fits into the pockets and can be adjusted to perfect position with the existing velcro tabs. I used the foam hip inserts that came with the Olympia pants as a template to trim the Bohn armor to fit the hip armor pockets, and it works nicely too. With the modifications the Olympia pants are now properly road worthy and should take an impact much better than the original stuff that I have serious doubts about.

    FWIW, I tried to use the Bohn leg armor, using both the standard carriers and the "mesh" that was supposed to be better for warm weather. The carriers are essentially tights or panty hose with pockets for the armor. Net result of that experiment is that for me, in Louisiana, the Bohn armor is usable about 3 weeks during cold weather that constitutes our winter, kind of like trying to use Aerostitch Roadcrafters down here. The tight fit of the Bohn armor (which has NO air channels) gives very effective insulation, and very uncomfortable in anything above 80 degrees, and above about 85 I have to shed the Bohn pants or die from heat exhaustion.
    Doug, 2011 R1200RT Polar Metallic
    MSF #127350, Instructor, Louisiana Dept of Public Safety
    Motorcycle Safety, Awareness & Operator Training Program
    NAUI Instructor #36288, Board Member, Divers Alert Network

  8. #23
    Dee G flymymbz's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2006
    Central WA
    Before I got my Roadcrafter, for summer riding I wore Joe Rocket mesh gear (pants and jacket). Riding through SD in the middle of August in 105F+ temps was miserable. I had a 2 gallon zip lock with water in it to re-charge my cooling vest. The vest would dry out after about 25 miles. My legs got sunburned, my arms got sunburned. I drank all 2 liters of water I had and it was about 45 miles to the next stop. I even drank the icky tasting water from the ziplock. It was so much fun when we got to the fuel station, leaning over the sink in the bathroom, puking up nothing, trying not to pass out.

    In my Roadcrafter with the same cooling vest, on the same route with the same temps, vents open, it now takes over an hour for the vest to lose effectiveness. I stay well hydrated with the 2L of water, and no more sunburn either.

    I will never wear mesh again.
    Too damn many bikes to list

  9. #24
    For sserious heat and riding any more than 30 minutes you want vented and not much mesh. Above about 94 degrees the air is hotter than your skin and mesh feels hot. It also is a direct route to serious dehydration. At triple digits it feels like a pizza oven door just opened.

    There are lots of vented non-mesh jackets. Pick your poison. My favorite for hot weather is my Aerostich Darian. In less hot stuff I prefer my Roadcrafter. In the 2003 Iron Butt Rally approaching Las Vegas at about 110 degrees I switched out of my mesh and into my Aerostich and with a wet shirt was much more comfortable. The shirt would stay wet only about 5 minutes under the mesh and for about 45 minutes under the Darian.
    Paul Glaves - "Big Bend", Texas U.S.A
    "The greatest challenge to any thinker is stating the problem in a way that will allow a solution." - Bertrand Russell

  10. #25
    That road looks good! Norwood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    From NW AL to WNC

    and there be water...

    Most of the post here in this thread mentioned water for cooling and drinking....

    I ran across this last year and order one:

    Now I only purchased/ used the "engine" (reservoir ) and the pump... I did purchased the insulated hose and I added about 18 inches or so to the hose. As you saw on the has a pump bulb for pressure...therefore you can spray yourself or passenger, pet or give someone a drink without them touching the hose. Wash the windscreen or helmet visor.

    I placed in reservoir either in insulated collapsible cooler with ice or I prefer using my Polar Bear cooler :

    I love this feature: you can invert the "engine reservoir" and put in the dishwasher.... much easier to keep cleaner.

    Because I do not wear the unit, rather I strap to my top case or back seat need to find the best position for the pressure system to work best...
    I attached the pressure bulb on my left side, jacket or bike in easy reach to give it about 10 to 15 pumps to increase the pressure as the reservoir empties.

    Hope this helps.
    MOA Ambassador, Member of AL, GA and Chattanooga Clubs, MTF Gold member and BOD.
    2011 R1200 GSA with DMC sidecar; G650GS.
    My annual charity event:
    " Oh Lord I pray, Let me live long enough to do everything they say I've done"

  11. #26
    Quote Originally Posted by lkchris View Post
    I've had BMW Airflow 2 and 3 and now 4 (not labeled that in USA). I am becoming convinced that the black version does indeed reflect heat as promoted (Cool Black technology). I'm still learning as regards undergarmets but am sold on LD Comfort shorts and will likely try their shirts shortly. (A fun pair of words!) In the meantime, Cycle Gear had Bilt Heat-Out shirts on sale recently and now have a couple but not tested yet. My expectation is that more expensive (LDComfort) will be better than cheap.

    An interesting product described here:
    That looks like a very usable vest, in that the wearer stays dry. And the concept sounds logical. I have a neck tie? [of sorts] that has those beads in it, and it does work ...cooling the blood as it passes through the main arteries in the neck, and it does make me feel cooler. The neck tie though does dry out quickly in the wind. I know it's not [gear] but I usually ride in an over sized denim shirt, to keep the sun off,...and funnel some air. I'm thinking that the addition of that vest might be the ticket?.

    I saw where Twisted Throttle carries that brand. Might just give'em a call.

  12. #27
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Apr 2010
    Mission, TX
    Have used a lot of different jackets but right now I'm using the BMW Airflow 4 and Airflow gloves. The jacket is the least vented and mesh jacket of all the jackets I've had but seems to work the best. A few have said it and I'll repeat it - less air flow into the jacket is best on long rides. On a short ride a totally vented or total mesh jacket might feel good but for touring you need long term heat management. I've recently added a Hyperkewl vest and it seems to work well also.

    Let me add that the Airflow gloves are the least vented/meshed of all the summer gloves I've had but they are the best feeling gloves I've owned for hot weather riding. They vent so little.

    Equipment tested up to 115+F. At 108 and higher helmet face shields need to be closed. Wet handkerchiefs around the neck dry in minutes once underway. Every 5 degrees increase is another world in how it feels and in how you go about handling the heat blast. You get to a point that the full fairing is actually helping you. And don't forget to hydrate, hydrate and... hydrate.

    More tips in this blog:

  13. #28
    I'm on my 4th year in an Olympia Airglide 3 mesh jacket with rain and insulated liner.

    Olympia now has the Airglide 4 out. I also just got a HyperKewl vest from Wingstuff.

    The jacket gets used about 7-8 months per year. When temp drops below 40F, I switch to my Olympia AST. The HyperKewl vest has been awesome this summer, but I'm wondering if Paul's suggestions would make it even better. It dries out pretty fast on a 20 min ride in 100F heat with 5% humidity.

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