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daboo last won the day on March 9

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About daboo

  • Birthday 08/01/1952


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  1. I decided to go ahead and purchase a radar detector. My reasons: Driving patterns around here have changed a lot in the past couple years. Drivers often exceed the speed limits on some of the local roads and freeways. I've never been close to being pulled over on those roads — yet. I've seen others though in that unenviable position on the side of the road. And who sticks out in a crowd? The one motorcyclist who must be driving fast in comparison to the soccer mom in her SUV. Freeways. The Washington State Patrol used to have such a reputation that when drivers crossed the border from Oregon, they slowed down. Not any more. They still pull over a lot of people when rush hour is over, but there are so many going by over the speed limit, it reminds me of Kodiak bears snagging salmon out of the rapids. A lot get by, but some get caught. It is safer IMHO to go with the flow of traffic than to stick to the speed limit and have cars going around you. Back country roads. One of my favorite rides is up to Artist Point. It's 3 hours each way and about an hour of the ride is on a two-lane country road that is only 50 mph...and invites 60 mph. On a couple trips, I've seen outside one little community, the local sheriff lying in wait. I have no doubt that if I was exceeding the speed limit as I rounded that bend, that I'd get a performance award. If I'm leading a group ride, I keep to within 5 mph of the speed limit. I also go with some other riders where I'm not leading, and when they get outside of traffic, they'll "make progress" as the LEOs in England would say. The speeds aren't above what I'm very comfortable with on those roads, but I don't want to rely on the lead guy with the detector being the one who keeps me from getting a performance award. So when my wife surprisingly :shock: said she was surprised I didn't have one already...who am I to say no? Besides, I like gadgets. I wouldn't ordinarily say that, but I started looking at my bike and I have a voltage indicator, GPS, front and rear dash camera, helmet mounted camera...and now a radar detector. If you have ideas on what I "need" on my F800GT for another gadget, please let me know. So I got the Uniden DFR9 from Costco. Why Costco? If I decided this wasn't for me, it is extremely easy to make a return. Their prices are generally good. And on electronics, they often have something that is top of the line. Turns out, the DFR9 is just that. Reviews are generally good when you can find them. Most of the reviews are really only a means to get you to buy from that particular website with about as many facts and data as you'll find in a magazine review on the F800GT. Often just a restatement of the manufacturer's press release. One review did say that in this price category, the Uniden DFR9 was the best in that class. That was at the suggested MSRP of about $350. Costco is selling this at $260. Features: GPS. The advantage here is you can mark locations to ignore, like in front of your local grocery store with the automatic doors. Filtering. I feel like it is filtering out a lot of the automatic doors on its own. Automatic muting. The first two beeps are loud enough to catch your attention...but then it drops in volume considerably so that if you're stuck at a traffic light, it is very tolerable. And if you want, just press the "Mute" button and all is silent. Configuration. In addition to a Highway and City mode, you can adjust about 30 individual settings. After I get used to this detector, I may turn off all the K band alerts. Those are almost always automatic doors and collision avoidance systems on the cars around you. Red Light Camera alerts. I know where most of these are, but it helps to have the reminder. Speed cameras. There was one ahead at a local school that I was warned about. Nice. The only disadvantage I can find on this unit is that it isn't waterproof. A plastic sandwich sized zip lock bag works perfectly for it. Now...how to be notified of an alert? This is critical if the radar detector is to do you any good. Most radar detector websites are pushing only a light system. Either one on a dashboard, or one attached to the inside of your helmet. I didn't like either idea. Enter the TaoTronics BA-12 Bluetooth Transmitter/Receiver. It's a small unit that plugs into the earphone socket on the Uniden DFR9. I attached it with velcro. It works like a charm. The BT connection is easily paired with the Sena 10C Pro headset I have. If an alert comes up, the DFR9 tells me of the alert and what band it is in. Cost is $30. There's a cheaper version for $20, but I liked the TX/RX capability of this one. The size is smaller than one of those small matchstick boxes. Now how to mount it? I'm partial to RAM mounts. They simply work. So I got these parts from GPS City. RAM Mount Aluminum Motorcycle Mount Base Kit with Reservoir and U-Bolt Hardware RAM Mount Plastic Double 1 inch dia Socket Arm with 360 deg Center Rotation RAM Mount Rubber Power Plate III Magnetic Holder Here's what it looks like: On this picture, you can see the BT transmitter on the side. It's small. Is this for everyone? Probably not. But I think it'll work for me. Chris
  2. I wouldn't look at how many liters a top case will give you, but just the dimensions. Most advertisements will give you the dimensions (LxWxH). Sometimes they'll give you both the exterior and interior dimensions. Just compare that to the dimensions of your laptop bag and you'll know it'll fit. I've only carried a backpack a couple times. I like the freedom of not having the additional weight on my back and the extra cooling you get when not having something on your back in the summer. So for me, I prefer both a top case and side cases. My right side case has all my spare clothes and some extras like a spare light bulb. The left case is open then for when I stop at the store on the way home. Same with the top case. I don't like the idea of commuting on my bike, and then stopping home to pick up the car to buy some milk and eggs. I'm using a Givi 460E Monokey. It's big enough to be useful, and not so big it dwarfs my bike. Chris
  3. I'm looking at new tires for my own bike. I've been running Dunlop Roadsmart IIIs twice now. I like them. Grip is good. Dry grip is a given. But wet traction is not. They've done well in all-year commuting in Seattle. One thing I really like is how there is some tread crossing the middle of the tire. With most of the wear in the center, it gives a good indication of the amount of tread left. Dunlop has a rebate going on till the end of April. Another tire I'm looking closely at is the Continental Road Attack 3. Also highly rated for traction in the wet. And it has a rebate currently too. Both tires should be good for longevity. On my current bike, I'll probably get 12-13K out of the rear. I'm at 11K now with about 4/32 left in the center tread area. When I look at the prices and the benefits of all the tires in this category, I can't see the benefit of the Road 5. The difference between them and others is not much, but there's a good sized difference in price. Chris
  4. daboo

    Let's talk GLOVES!

    I've never been in a crash at speed, but I can learn from those who have. There's some things in life that you don't have to learn the hard way...like buying good gloves. Chris
  5. I can't change their policy, but if you do qualify for their military discount, then it's a way to save some additional money. Chris
  6. They probably count "veteran" as being different than Active Duty or Retired military. Chris
  7. I've been using Rotella T6 in my bikes for the past several years. It works great. No issues at all. Here's a tip for those of you who are in the military or retired. Go to Home Depot to buy your Shell Rotella T6. (They carry other brands, but I haven't bothered to know what they are since this is what I'm looking for.) Anyway, Home Depot will give you a 10% military discount and their price was at the Wally World price or less. Then turn in the rebate. My cost after the rebate and military discount was about $13/gallon. Chris
  8. It wasn't open all the way, but I got a nice almost 3 hour ride each way to where the road was blocked off. Six hours of riding, plus just walking around and soaking in those sites was better than sitting in front of a computer wishing I'd gone. Chris
  9. So we've had a heat wave here in the Pacific Northwest, and starting today, the temps are supposed to return to normal. After all the snow we got...which may not seem like much to those who normally get snow...this was a wonderful respite. Snow in the PNW is supposed to be in the mountains, not the city streets and it shut Seattle down for weeks. I knew before leaving that the entire North Cascades Highway was not completely clear. There's snow plow crews working on both ends of the passes to clear it out. But I knew it would be open far enough through to get a good ride in some of the most amazing scenery in the state. I headed up I-5 till just past Arlington and then turned off onto Hwy 530. If this is your first time through, stop for a moment or two to look at the Oso landslide. An entire section of the hill slid off a few years back and buried the area east of the town and inhabitants there under 30-70 feet of mud and debris. The scenery along Hwy 530 is beautiful in its own right. Farmland. Scattered homes and tiny communities along the base of the foothills of the Northern Cascades. Here's some pics from the roads along Hwy 530. Roads were good along the way. The sand from the snow seems cleared, at least in your lane. The center stripe area still had some in places. After riding along for an hour or so on roads like this, I reached the North Cascades National Park. In a few weeks, I'm sure all that ice will be melted away. Oh...temperatures varied a lot on the trip, often within a mile or less. The high I saw on the temperature readout was 80F...but the low was 48F. There were places where the air wasn't moving and the tree canopy was high and dense. Those areas still had a foot or more of snow and between the shade, the still air, and the snow, the temperatures would plunge 15 degrees or more. It was like a bunch of microclimates. Gorge Lake I parked the bike at Colonial Creek Campground. You can see ice still on the water in the distance. This is DiabloLake from the campground area. I thought these rings were interesting. There's an observation point up the hill a couple miles past where they had the road blocked off, so I hiked up there. I actually liked it better than when I've ridden through there. It was a good time to spend seeing things that you go by too fast and hearing the sounds. And except for a couple I passed who were going down as I was going up the hill, I had the place to myself. Diablo Lake from above at the Observation Point. Look closely above the snow and the black spec is my bike. I left there and the way home was like the way up there. No traffic. It was just a great day to be out riding. Chris
  10. When my mother died, I felt like she went through a door where there was a big party going on. The door was closed to me for now, but later I will join her. I hope and pray you too will feel like that. You have memories. Beautiful ones that you can treasure. Those are precious. Chris
  11. Actually, my Gerbing heated gloves keep my fingers dry. The exposure time though is limited to about an hour at a time. My riding during the winter months is primarily commuting, not pleasure. I have some Tourmaster Epic boots that keep my feet dry. I ended up buying two pairs...the normal Epic boot for colder months and the "Air" version for the summer. I've read some comments about water going down the neck. When you're buying a jacket, look at the collar. For instance the Tourmaster Transition jackets are very similar to the Olympia jackets...but the collar isn't as high. I've never had water go down my neck with my Olympia AST2 or Ranger jackets. Chris
  12. My first thought is to read up on some articles on riding in heat. David Hough has some you can find easily with an Internet search. Here's a good one. Motorcycle Tips: Hot Weather Riding WWW.SOUNDRIDER.COM In David Hough's articles, you'll find there's a threshold temperature where you have to change your strategy. Around 93F, having hot air blowing on your body only heats it up more. Sweat dries immediately before it can cool your body. At that point, you want to limit the amount of air hitting your body. When I did my post-retirement ride through those areas, I wore a Olympia Dakar mesh jacket. While it is a great mesh jacket, I didn't get 100% of the air flowing through it. I also wear a Hit-Air airbag jacket that blocks some of the air. That actually worked wonders. I also wore a Cycle Gear Heat-Out long sleeve t-shirt and a Cycle Gear cooling vest. The Heat-Out long sleeve t-shirt kept the wind from directly hitting my skin on my arms. I soaked my cooling vest overnight in the motel sink. Then in the morning, I'd put it into a large ziplock bag. I remember pulling it out one day in a restaurant in the middle of nowhere. The temperature outside was in the high 90s, maybe 100F. I stood there in the restaurant putting on my cooling vest, water dripping off onto the carpeted floor. This teenage girl looked at me like I was crazy to be putting on this dripping wet clothing. I just smiled, knowing I was going to be extremely comfortable when I went outside. Being able to block out some air, but not all is worth thinking about. As I wrote, the airbag vest blocks off some, not all air. I met a couple at a rest stop. Temps were over 100 F. She said they had cooling vests, but there's lasted only 30 minutes before drying out. Mine lasted me 3 hours. If I was to buy another, the only thing I'd change would be to look for something with a collar. Otherwise, the Cycle Gear cooling vest worked great. Chris
  13. Until recently, I commuted daily in Seattle to work. Usually my commute was at least one hour each way. The only times I didn't commute were when it was snowing. I've retired, but I still ride my bike everywhere I go unless it is snowing. That means rain. As one woman rider said, "If you don't ride in rain in Seattle, you don't ride." I wear Olympia gear. I wore the AST2 for many years till the Ranger was on close-out. They aren't much different except for the name. What makes it work as a great three-season jacket is the waterproof liner is built into the jacket. But the vents allow air to flow through to your body. It takes more effort to do that, but you get better cooling than if the vent just dumps air into the area between the jacket and the waterproof liner like some do. And if done right, it doesn't leak. I took Mellow's suggestion and bought the Olympia Dakar mesh jacket for the summer. It comes with a wind and water-proof liner. Not Gore-Tex...but it works. Olympia designed it such that you can wear that over your riding jacket, or under it. For pants, I have the predecessor to the current Olympia X-Moto pants. I really like how they designed these. They have become my all weather (16F - 105F) pants. The outer layer is textile and has a zipper portion that opens up a mesh area over your thighs. In cold or wet weather, zip it up. In hot weather, unzip it and tuck it into the lower leg portion. Under that is a separate wind and water-proof pant liner. As the weather gets colder or wet, you just put it on. When the weather gets warmer or dry, stow it in your luggage. You can attach those to the inside of the outer pant, but I just leave them loose. A real advantage to this design is you never get a wet crotch. In the past, I used Tourmaster Caliber pants. My boots would catch a little as I was putting them on and eventually the stitching would pull apart enough to give me a wet crotch. With the Olympia design, there's enough give that in about five years of use, they haven't leaked. And if they ever do, I can just buy rain pants at a local sporting goods store. And since you can wear them separately, when the family went to Iceland on vacation, I took those as my rain pants. Gloves...for about six months of the year, I wear Gerbing heated gloves. As it gets warmer, I change to some Cortech gloves. They have a Hipora liner that works well. One suggestion for whatever you buy. I wash my gear a couple times a year. When it is dry, I hang it up and spray it with a waterproofing spray like you'd use on tents. Fred Meyer sells the cans for a little over $8 a can. While the gear I buy is rain proof, by doing this you keep the outer layer from getting soaked. It'll dry a lot faster and won't be as heavy. Since I've been using the Olympia gear, I haven't needed a separate rain jacket and pants. And in Seattle, it has rained, or is raining, or will be raining. Chris
  14. I was just reading through some of the comments here and came across this one. It's worth reading his entire post, not just the part I quoted. I got an education in microSD cards when I got the Halocam dash camera. My first "mistake" was in buying the Samsung EVO card that was offered as part of a bundle when I purchased the dash camera. Apparently, the vendor has nothing to do with what is offered as a bundle to purchase. It's controlled by Amazon. But the specs looked good. In using some memory benchmark testing programs, I found the Samsung was incredibly slow in Write. In Read, it was certainly fast, but when writing to the card, it was only half what the transfer rate was supposed to be. I'm going off of memory now, so don't hold me to these numbers...but it was writing at @16 MB/s and was supposed to be transferring at @30 MB/sec. It only reached 30 MB/sec for an extremely short period of time...probably just long enough to get the rating on the side of the card. A lessor rated Sandisk memory card I had for my Sena 10C was actually better at 29 MB/sec. Then as I was reading through comments on the Samsung EVO card, someone pointed out that Samsung didn't warranty the card for use in dash cameras. I suspect their memory card works just fine in a still camera, but not where you need a sustained write speed like with a dash camera or action camera. So that's just a personal observation or experience on what Panther was saying. When a camera says it can take a 256 GB memory card, don't just assume you can use the cheapest memory card in it successfully. Chris
  15. No problem, Odge. Cameras are just one of those things that isn't bike specific. Here's a post I made on another forum that actually gives an answer in a way to @superfist question about the lens in the wet. It's one of those "where did you ride today" posts. The pictures with the side of the helmet shown are from my Sena 10C Pro. The Halo Cam pictures say so in the upper left corner of the pictures. I'll paste the entire post in. Chris