Sunday, November 20, 2011

Heated gear

Hello again, Ed here.

One thing that is important to me for this trip is Devon's comfort.  This will be our longest and most challenging trip yet, so we are purchasing some additional gear that we have not needed up to this point.  Devon tends to get colder than I, so I wanted to be able to figure a way out to keep her warm while we are cruising down the road.  I also started thinking that I too would like to be warm as there is a possibility that we will be riding in cold weather day after day for several days.  I was listening to a motorcycle radio show called Side Stand Up and they were talking about riding gear and a few words kept resonating in my mind, "a cold rider is a distracted rider".  So with a very short discussion and an easy sell, I convinced Devon that heated jacket liner would be a good idea for this trip.

We wound up going with Firstgear Heated liners with the Warm and Safe dual heat troller.  We will be using the dual heat troller to control both liners.  Hooking the troller up to the bike was easier than anticipated (instructions for the hook up are below).  These liners are nice and warm, I especially like that the collar is heated.  Usually, if I get cold it is the front of my neck, with the collar zipped up my neck should be nice and warm.  Though this was a fairly hefty investment, we are happy with it and feel it is definitely the way to go.

Yesterday, in addition to installing the heated gear on the bike, I was able to install a second 12volt plug in the right saddlebag.  Now we will have two places on the bike to charge cell phones, Ipods, and the yet to be purchased Acer Netbook.  I was also able to install one of the most important accessories on the bike:

ADV Stickers!

The ADV Sticker on the back of the trailer

Let's look at the easy installation of the heat troller.

Remove the right and left side covers
Remove the seat
Disconnect the battery cables. 
Here is the part of the heat troller that stays on the bike.  It has a 15 amp fuse in it.  The troller plugs into this piece.
Under the left side cover, the fuse block can be found.  I removed the fuse block cover to expose the accessory hook ups at the top of the fuse block.  I hooked up the heated gear here rather than directly to the battery, this way the heated gear will always be off when the key to the bike is not on.
Hook the positive to the positive side. 
Hook up the negative side
It really is just that easy!  The fuse cover can now be put back on.
I used a couple of zip ties to secure the cable to the frame.  I mounted the cable here so that when it is not in use, it can be hidden under the side panel.  When it is in use, it can be pulled out of the side panel.  I have seen other folks who had the plug sicking out from under their seat near the gas tank.  I did not like the way that looked because the plug is always visible.
When ours is not in use, it will be hidden under the side cover.
When in use, we can pull the cable out from under the cover.
Here is the Heat Troller
The troller has two knobs on top, one for each garment.  The LED lights light up when the knobs are in the on position.  The troller allows the rider to adjust the amount of heat the liner will put out.  There is not a low, medium, or high setting, it is like setting a thermostat so it is off, high, or anything you desire in between.  The knobs color code to the hook up cables for the liners.
The red male plug is the power source which plugs into the lead on the bike.  The yellow female plug corresponds to the yellow knob on the troller and the red plug corresponds to the red knob.  The operation is plug and play.
Devon lookin' hot and happy!  ;-)
I also wired a 12 volt power outlet on a long wire  in the right saddlebag.  This will give us another plug in to charge our rechargeable gear.  I put it on a long wire so we can hook our air pump up with a long lead in case we need to help another  rider out.
The research for and dreaming of this trip continues.  Devon and I are so synchronized about this trip that it is almost scary.  June cannot come soon enough, we simply cannot wait to twist the throttle and have our rubber roll over the rock until we hit Alaska.

I have heard of other riders talking about experiencing a great awakening when taking a very long extended trip like this.  I suppose that is because you can unplug from the rat race, live simple with few obligations, and find someplace silent.  I often dream about this and wonder what it will be like.  I'm looking forward to the sights and the people  we will meet.  I am sure this will be a life changing trip, and I simply wish June would hurry up and get here. 

Thank you to everyone who has provided us with suggestions and support for this trip, and thank you for looking at our blog.

Until next time,

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