Jump to content

The riding in rain thread


Recommended Posts

So how many of us have ridden their FJ in the rain? Or routinely ride theirs in the rain? 
 
So Cali isn't exactly the place you would expect rain to occur in a frequent rate (last 'winter' we got 2 rain storms that lasted all of a few hours), however with the predictions of El Nino rolling in and it already being an EXTREMELY wet summer, I have a hunch that this winter may be very wet. As someone who commutes on his FJ, I'd like to know what others have done to prepare them and their bikes for the inevitable foul conditions. 
 
Yesterday I got caught in a severe downpour on the FJ, couldn't help but feel the whole time I was right on the edge of control the entire time. What can I do to the beast to make it more tame in water? Tires/suspension/reflashing? I am nearly to the point of fitting an exhaust to the bike so a reflash of the ECU is going to be in order soon- can anything be done to B mode to make it even more mellow? 
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Replies 44
  • Created
  • Last Reply
  • Premium Member
I rode in rain the first two days I had my FJ back in the first week of June, but ironically we haven't had a drop of rain here in Oregon since. The TCS, ABS, and B-mode were great for peace of mind in the wet stuff. This should be a great all-weather bike.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Guest branthopolis
I got caught in an unrelenting two hour long monsoon type rain on the Blue Ridge Parkway a few weeks ago.. B-mode helps.. Make sure you aren't death-gripping the bars. Slow down a bit. The stock D222s did fine and the bike had no issues..
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Got caught in the rain on our trip. Mega down pour. Stock tires were fine. Kept it in standard mode. You are out there more so body parts get wetter quickly.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I got caught in an unrelenting two hour long monsoon type rain on the Blue Ridge Parkway a few weeks ago.. B-mode helps.. Make sure you aren't death-gripping the bars. Slow down a bit. The stock D222s did fine and the bike had no issues..
Agree with all of that, although I didn't try B-mode. About 12 hours of rain over 2 days on my Maritimes trip. Also had the bike get thoroughly soaked over night, started up fine the next morning.
 
FJ-09, 690 Enduro R.
Back Roads. Period.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've been caught in the rain a few times, but the worst was when i recently used the bike for a work trip.  Returning home I was caught in the leftovers of tropical storm Bill.  I thought I might miss it at first, but drove right into it.  Stopped about 70 miles in at a pilot to change and put on my rain gear.  I had about 120 miles left on i-70 and stayed fairly dry the remainder of the time save my boots and gloves (had just put on grip warmers and didn't think i would use them for some time, but they actually came in handy here).  
 
As far as handling, I would say everything performed great and I didn't notice the rain except for one instance.  I was about 20 miles from home and changing lanes around a corner. It had been very warm prior and was still quite warm during the rain.  I crossed a tar strip at about 65 and felt the rear of the bike walk out on me what felt like a foot.  Before I could even react, I believe the TCS kicked in and the bike straightened right up.  It was extremely scary as I was in traffic, but never had this happen on tar strip to that extent.  I've felt them before but was not expecting that. 
 
As far as rain gear, I went on the cheap and ride with a thor rain jacket.  I did see a not great review on revzilla, and have had the water get in the armpit mesh once on this trip actually, but it didn't even soak through, I just felt a bit and was fine after that.  I wear the Frogg Trogg classic pro rain pants, and have to say these work great.  They feel cheap (almost papery) and when i first pulled them out, thought there was no way they would keep water out.  However after using them I can say they work great and get the job done.  I wish I would have gotten the Road toad as they have pass through pockets.  I don't yet have gloves or boots specific for wet riding, but plan to get some gloves soon.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

So how many of us have ridden their FJ in the rain? Or routinely ride theirs in the rain?  
So Cali isn't exactly the place you would expect rain to occur in a frequent rate (last 'winter' we got 2 rain storms that lasted all of a few hours), however with the predictions of El Nino rolling in and it already being an EXTREMELY wet summer, I have a hunch that this winter may be very wet. As someone who commutes on his FJ, I'd like to know what others have done to prepare them and their bikes for the inevitable foul conditions. 
 
Yesterday I got caught in a severe downpour on the FJ, couldn't help but feel the whole time I was right on the edge of control the entire time. What can I do to the beast to make it more tame in water? Tires/suspension/reflashing? I am nearly to the point of fitting an exhaust to the bike so a reflash of the ECU is going to be in order soon- can anything be done to B mode to make it even more mellow? 
First of all you need to relax and breathe while riding in the rain. B mode is plenty tame for the rain. Just don't make any sudden moves , throttle, brakes, steering and you will be fine. I rode down to Deals Gap and I hit 12 hours of pouring rain, the guys I was riding with didn't want to waste a day getting down there , and neither did I . After a while you actually get use to it. As far as the feeling of "the edge of control" ... That was in your mind and you can't think like that. Relax breathe and like mentioned before lite grip on the bars and you will be fine... The bike can do it.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
We have special bikes in the UK. They are treated with a miracle material called Dontbesuchapoof that makes them impervious to the effects of precipitation. It fights off everything clouds can throw at the bike.
 
The Dunlops are pretty good in the wet but got a bit perplexed by the hailstones thrown at them by a Cotswolds thunderstorm.
This signature is left blank as the poster writes enough pretentious bollocks as it is.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Supporting Member
I've spent many hours in the rain on my ride home from the dealer and both of my road trips. Absolutely no troubles with the bike, although that is the one time I wished I had a BMW RT fairing. I usually ran B-mode in the rain, but not always. The bike was plenty stable - at least as stable as any other motorcycle I've ever ridden. No trouble with the tires hydroplaning, either, even with almost 3000 miles on them at the time riding on the interstate with water sheeting across it.
 
Need to re-waterproof my 'stich (it's in Duluth fixing some pre-FJ crash damage), but the bike worked great.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
Rain riding doesn't have to be a nerve-wracking, white knuckle experience. In fact, I find rain to be oddly soothing. The wonderful smells when it first starts are incredible and one of my joys of riding.
 
For starters, relax. Riding wet pavement requires you to be smooth on rider input. Ease onto the brakes, don't grab; Smooth, controlled throttle input; Don't charge the corners, and roll through them versus powering out of the corner.
 
I've put a lot of miles on bikes over the years that did NOT have TCS, ABS and B-Mode. I can tell you, the FJ is as easy to ride in the rain as a bike gets. It takes years to build the confidence in your tires on wet pavement, but they'll generally surprise you as to how much grip they actually have in the wet. As long as you're not being a complete dope, that is. ;)
 
I put a few long hours riding in at the Gap back in June in rain. B-Mode was awesome! Talk about making throttle input a lot easier! It almost took the fun out of it... :D
2015 Stealth Grey FJ-09 Pilot
Base of Operations: Chesterfield, VA
Farkels? Lots, nothing flashy, but all functional...
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am no novice when it comes to riding in the rain, I've done it a handful of times in my years that water has actually fallen from the sky around here. On my KLR, I had dual sport tires that gripped like mad, it wasn't an easy chore to get them to slide, even being totally cold. However the FJ is no KLR in its power and handling so I'd like to set it up as best I can for commuting in the wet. 
 
The other days tropical downpour didn't really have me uncomfortable, more so uneasy as it was the first time I've ridden it in actual rain (instead of wet roads). No white knuckling or sudden movements, but it would be nice to have a smoother throttle in B mode as well as better traction. 
 
What good wet road tires are out there? Stock tires seem to be fine for general commuting/riding, and I may throw another stock D222 on the rear to absorb up the last few months of summer weather before fall begins to roll in. The front I feel is fine, I'm more concerned with the rear.
Link to comment
Share on other sites

I've done a fair bit of rain riding on various trips over the years. I did a couple hundred miles in rain on the FJ on my trip to CO last week. Steady rain, and some serious monsoonal downpours. Standing water, and rivers across the road.
 
The bike does fine in the rain, B mode makes things nice and easy. Weather protection is pretty decent, I was using Frogg Togs over my regular gear, and stayed nice & dry.
 
Unlike some others here, I thought the stock D222s are sh*t in the wet. Pilot Road 2's I had on my 'Busa were far better. I had the rear break loose a few times when I didn't expect it. Traction control kept things from becoming dramatic, however. It definitely won't be getting another set of Dunlops. Will probably go with Road 4s...
Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • Premium Member
I'm with Rodan. Michelin PR2's are by far the best tire in the wet I've ever had. Two friends currently riding on PR4's and report they are pretty awesome in wet. I'd go for Michelins.
2015 Stealth Grey FJ-09 Pilot
Base of Operations: Chesterfield, VA
Farkels? Lots, nothing flashy, but all functional...
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Archived

This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.


×