Tips for Riding in the Rain

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bwilms
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Tips for Riding in the Rain

Post by bwilms »

Tips for Riding in the Rain

It's been a rainy late summer/early fall in the Cleveland area. I've been caught riding in rainy conditions more than I would have liked (this morning included). I've been very satisfied with how the Buddy handles on wet roads, but I have to remember not to get too comfortable with the potential for slick surfaces.

In the motorcycle handbook, they offer a few suggestions for riding in wet conditions. The first recommendation they make is to stop and take shelter for a little while, but sometimes you are on short trips and just want to tough it out. Here are some items that I need to remind myself when I get stuck in the wet weather:

01. Begin stopping twice as far from your target as normal, to allow for a slower, more gradual stop.
02. Ride in the tracks of the cars in front of you (this one's in the manual).
03. Do not come off the seat until you have come to a COMPLETE stop (my back tire slipped a little this morning as I came to the light and went to reposition myself).

Anybody have any other tips for riding in the rain? Learning experiences?
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castleton
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Post by castleton »

My MSF instructor advised waiting out the first 15 minutes of any shower, no matter how light, since the initial wetting brings up the oil/grit from the road, which increases hazardous road conditions. After 15 minutes it mostly washes away.

8)
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brat
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Post by brat »

Also remember to take your time cornering. The bike can come right out from under you. And remember cars act like they can't see you when it is dry outside, so they really will have a harder time seeing you in the rain and stopping for you.
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germ
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Rain gear

Post by germ »

I keep a set of rain gear under my seat at all times. I have a Marmot Precip jacket which was about $70 but I use it for hiking and camping as well. It is maybe the best rain shell on the market and comes with a built in hood that my helmet fits over. My pants are just standard hiking rain pants. I have ridden in hard Colorado thunderstorms and have not gotten a drop of water on me. There is only one problem. When the water rolls down the pants it all ends up on my shoes. I guess weather proof shoes would be best but I often wear converse all-stars. In either case weather is unpredictable so onboard rain gear is a must at all times. Don't leave home without it.
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BuddyRaton
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Post by BuddyRaton »

Pavement markings such as stop bars and striping can get very slippery when wet causing your foot to slide out and your bike to lay down like it needs a nap, stop so that you don't put your foot down on them at lights or stop signs.

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Beamie
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Post by Beamie »

Don't.
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setbuilder
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Post by setbuilder »

I have only been caught in the rain once and had no handling problems. I was not trying to take any fast corners though. Thanx for mentioning the slipperyness of the road paint- I never thought about it but I will keep it in mind next time.
Sailn
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Post by Sailn »

Just had a joy of my first ride in the rain. It wasn't that much fun. The buddy handled very well. Braking was good, turns where smooth. The only real handling problem was turning across trolley tracks, which had cobblestones between them. From a stop, I tried to ride over them at a pretty steep angle, about 60 degrees. The front wheel went over well, but the rear tire lost traction and skidded sideways until I was 90 degrees to the track. As I said, I was stopped, had both feet down as I was concerned that this might happen. This would not have been a problem on a motorcycle, it is juts that the tires on the buddy are small.

I also learned that although the tyvex bunny suit I keep under the seat is waterproof, the seals are NOT. Water would collect in the crotch, seep thru the seam and soak the crotch of my pants. It would have been much better to have just had totally wet jeans on. Fortunatly, I was riding home and only had to endure my wife's laughter, and not that of my co-workers. Next time I'll keep an old pair of foulies at work and I'll stay dry.
lou76
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...

Post by lou76 »

the only sure fire way to keep your clothes from getting wet is to take them off completely and stash them under the seat.... :lol: skin is way waterproof...
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sunshinen
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Post by sunshinen »

ditto on the waterproof hiking pants in the seat. wearing boots will solve the shoe puddle problem, or try to find some gaiters that will strap over your shoes and throw them under the seat too.

my only experience in the rain has been the only time someone really almost hit me. a sports car decided to come into my lane. i hit the brakes, there was a definite skidding wobble that was scary as it was my first week on my scooter.

so my tips:
keep a STRONG hold on the handle bars. that way if something happens, you're already ready to maintain a steady stance. if your back tire starts to skid, keep the handlebars straight and upright and you should come out okay.

(this i know more from mountain biking, but the principles will be the same) hit obstacles (railway lines, etc.) at as close to 90 degrees as possible. slow before you hit them, but not while hitting them. this is not the time to lose traction. a little speed to get you over them is probably a good thing. on my bike at least, i sometimes slow down too much and this makes the obstacle bigger, somehow.

wear blaze orange/yellow to help people see you.
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jrsjr
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Post by jrsjr »

Sailn wrote:The only real handling problem was turning across trolley tracks, which had cobblestones between them. From a stop, I tried to ride over them at a pretty steep angle, about 60 degrees. The front wheel went over well, but the rear tire lost traction and skidded sideways until I was 90 degrees to the track. As I said, I was stopped, had both feet down as I was concerned that this might happen. This would not have been a problem on a motorcycle, it is juts that the tires on the buddy are small.
Yikes! I don't envy you that ride. The only thing I ever found that I disliked more than wet pavement marking was one day I rode into a little village in the Swiss Jura mountains and found that I was riding on fresh cow poop over cobblestones. I didn't fall, but that was only because I was lucky. This was on a motorcycle, and my biggest concern was that I would have to stop and put my foot down and then I would fall and wrench my hip or break my leg or something. My one saving grace was that I was able to keep moving, however slowly. I never had to stop. Needless to say, I didn't use the brakes, especially the front brake in this situation, and I also used a light touch on the clutch and throttle to boot. Cobblestones! Yikes!
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Post by ericalm »

I keep a couple trash bags/plastic bags stashed away. They come in handy for wrapping around your seat when you're parked in the rain.
A plastic grocery bag is one of the best accessories you can have. Easily attached to the glove bucket hook for hauling drive-thru burgers, six-packs (of soda, of course) and other things that don't fit in the pet carrier.
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peabody99
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Post by peabody99 »

does anyone have any thoughts on going to a professional meeting in the rain. on many days at the office I can go in looking like a beatnik, but on others I have to go out into the community and look presentable. I realize if you are riding in rain to your own office you can freshen up, stash your wet gear and all...but what about when you are going to a meeting not at your office? Won't it create a scene to walk in and drop trou??? I am thinking these are the days I will just have to drive the car. I am sure in Europe you can go to a meeting and take your pants off...but just cannot see it here in buttoned down cleveland or the north east. Anyone have any feedback/thoughts/stories?
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SteMer
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Post by SteMer »

Not sure about how to keep from looking a little goofy going to a meeting in a rainsuit unless you can sneak into a restroom pretty quickly. If you have a place to change before you're meeting a rainsuit comes in real handy.

I have an AX-1 MKII rainsuit from Nelson Rigg that keeps me very dry. Was very effective during yesterday's rain (Cincinnati). The jacket also doubles as a nice windbreaker over my riding jacket.

http://www.nelsonrigg.com/products/rainwear/ax1.htm
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vitaminC
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Post by vitaminC »

peabody99 wrote:does anyone have any thoughts on going to a professional meeting in the rain.
It's all about how much you want to spend! Get an Aerostich Roadcrafter or Darien and you'll be able to handle just about anything! I've ridden in mine in temps ranging from the 30's to 108, and it handled it all quite well! These are designed as oversuits, so there is plenty of room for layering and/or office wear underneath. I can be out of the suit in less than 30 seconds. Quality gear costs more, but there is usually a reason for it...
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brat
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Post by brat »

How about this?? I am think about this.

http://www.tucanourbano.it/eng/f_termoscud.htm

They also have winter gear, like grip covers to help with cold hands.

Susan
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peabody99
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Post by peabody99 »

vitaminC wrote:
peabody99 wrote:does anyone have any thoughts on going to a professional meeting in the rain.
It's all about how much you want to spend! Get an Aerostich Roadcrafter or Darien and you'll be able to handle just about anything! I've ridden in mine in temps ranging from the 30's to 108, and it handled it all quite well! These are designed as oversuits, so there is plenty of room for layering and/or office wear underneath. I can be out of the suit in less than 30 seconds. Quality gear costs more, but there is usually a reason for it...
$700 + thats 1/2 (edit 1/4!) as much as the Buddy! :rofl: looks full proof though!
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