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Performance and Modifications Enhancement (Mods) in a single thread. One stop shopping.

Makingitwork6999

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Do you ride all day like I do? Are your ball bearings crying out after two hours on the highway? I know exactly what you are going through. And as usual, I have a brainless solution for you that absolutely nobody would ever try. (As I roll the side of my smirk back and drop my eyebrows)


1. Highway pegs
2. Seat modifications
3. Rear shock spring compression
4. Front fork mods and new springs
5. Bar risers
6. Tires with the correct height profile. Maybe 70 series.

… then ride standing up. Let the wind force flow through your testicles. You too can be a riding Jedi. (I am sorry. I have this iconic image in mind of the old star wars poster.. and a breeze. Heh heh… can’t stop laughing). “Let the force flow through you… down there. Yes. There,” says the old master Jedi.

Oh lord, please stop adjusting yourself on the sidewalk. There is no need. Learn how I did it. It is a multi-layered problem.

Okay. Why is this problem so hard? Well. It is not you. You were given a great bike with really poor setup. Some guy or gal had a great design, then those darn marketing people got to it. Why do manufacturers do this? Because on the showroom floor your bike looks better with really low handlebars, and a very tilted seat to give the bike the look that it has some kind of spoiler on it. For all you guys out there this is cool. You have a little boy in you that likes hot wheels.

If you are a lady, well who knows. That easy bake oven that nearly set the house on fire is still in your brain. So to ease your fears, you got a bike. So relaxing! No more thoughts of burning your fingers and sending that meteorite brownie sailing into the ceiling fan.

But you too can benefit from not sliding forward in the seat. Guys or gals can relate to this.

Highway pegs are half the solution. Even when your seat has a terrible tilt


See how my organs are being smushed when I ride hunched over? You should sit upright. Ever video yourself riding? Ever wonder why you don’t feel right?

This video said to me: stop wearing the kidney belt. It is squishing your organs. Yes. That pipe mod was awesome. But lord! This is why your belly is all weird after a ride. Sit up more. Relax. Let the gut hang out.

So. This is what you want. This is why you will buy the bike. You want cool. You want to relax. You don’t want your large intestines pinched off. Oh lord no! Especially after those pork ribs slathered BBQ sauce. You want to be a Son of Anarchy. You want that image.

So you test rode it for 10 minutes, and bought it. Then you will get it home and realize after a few days that it was really not what you expected. Those pork ribs got all log jammed in there and you regretted it. Your feet hurt. Those foot pegs are crap.

I have had many salesmen tell me. Comfortable seats on the showroom floor wont sell. They look weak, wimpy, and stupid. But you wanted that geometric shape. The one that reminded you of an old Countach. Right?

So. I have a great mind for solutions. I try so hard. So I am told. I worked through it all. And yes. Some of it just sounds stupid. Well. I cannot spew technobabble. Nobody would like me.

But yeah. Your tires themselves can pitch you forward. That is just so simple. Compounded with weak old fork springs and you have serious braking issues.

But that is not all of it.

Add weak stock progressive springs and wow. Oh so bad. Yes. Honda built this flaw in.

Hit the brakes and you slide forward. Oh!! Now you get it! Yes. My springs are non-progressive. No nose dive. No pitching forward. Yeah. Really.


I am a man with purpose and direction. A personification of the conceptual vector. I am a laugh a minute for sure. But wow, the way I collect, and use information is unprecedented. So I am also told.

I have brilliant written all over my posts. And some of you just don’t want someone like me stepping on your big feet. So you paint me as stupid.

You want stupid??? My seat is covered in jeans man. Jeans!!!

You want really stupid? I have adjustable mirrors in my hand guards so I can see behind me while I stand up. Yes. Adjustable. I am waiting for the adhesive to dry. 3m tape of course for the backing. Black paint to cover the adhesive for a better look. Weather resistant. Vibration proof! How do I come up with this insane stuff? I ride all the time. It is the best way to say it. Oh. And I make stuff. All kinds of stuff. Cool stuff. Impressive stuff. It makes me happy. I love a good team up.

People can hate me all they like. Ew. Haters. Funny how it is always the loners who think they are smart and have no time to help people. If you are so smart, why are you always so busy? You cannot do stuff by yourself and do it better. You are not Tony Stark.

Don’t hate! Hit the LIKE button.

presser ce bouton!!
—Rider of the Storm
 

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Makingitwork6999

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Truth or dare….

Did I actually crash my bike and spin it around on stones, then pick it up without a scratch? Yes. I did. The crash bar folded over slowly and laid the bike down gently. What a concept!

Bar ends have many function. They protect your grips and body work. But they also lever tge bars in a crash. They force the bars to bend. Whoh? Really? Yes. They can twist up your forks. They can flex a spoked wheel out of true. Your wheel is alloy.

See how my crash bar is wrapped? I just re-used it. No paint. See my other videos. Watch my stuff. I am not showing off. Most of my videos are just me doing stuff. I am just a regular guy who can ride exceptionally well. …and maybe I have some teency eency weency engineering skills. Nothing to write home about. So crashing is a challenge for me. Not a disaster.


I pushed the handle bars back into alignment at a gas station. Not that it needed it all that bad. I just felt better about it.

Later, I aligned the bars using the tube from an industrial vacuum.

What does this have to do with performance? This is called crash recovery. I do it very well. I got paid a lot of money to do crash recovery. The trick is to do it with a smile.

You see all the gear I wear. This is about crashing with a smile. Do not laugh. I am dead serious. I am 100% ready to crash with no regrets. This is a very difficult and practiced thing. I am so desensitized to crashing that it no longer matters. That in itself is a skill everyone can work towards. Ride with attitude. Don’t ride with a death wish. Ride with care, but ride without fear. Ride with all your skills to bear. Ride like you walk. When you do, everything else in your riding is fun. Pure fun. Get your head out of my cup.


People and smiles are important. Money is not important. I do not fear downtime. If the bike is broke, I will fix it and make a video of it. I thrive on smiles and my inbox. I get 5 e-mails a day. My life is in balance. Get out of that. It is not for you.

I adopted a kitten from the shelter this week that was rejected by another family. She is just a little hyper and needed space to run. Sometimes you just need understanding. I have a lot of that. Dammit. Stop chewing on my shoes already.

Do you get upset that you have 150 unread e-mails? My ex-boss thought it was okay to get 2,000 a night. And then it was okay to spend your night sifting through those e-mails. So I invented systematic filters. He was not on board with limited insanity. So, I decided to ride full-time. There is a lot less insanity. That is also crash recovery. Bringing your life and soul back into balance. I am nothing like 99% of the population. I am a one percent-er of the one percent. Get out of my pasta. Bukan untuk kamu kecik kucing!!

I am the king of crash recovery. I live a dream. People would do anything to be me and do what I do. I realize that who I am is so far out-of-reach for most people that I feel undeserving. People are trapped in their lives. I ride the dream. See my Hawaii video. I loved scootering in Hawaii. So nice! I get to do things people dream of. I ride dream roads. Watch my videos. Stop licking the rim of my cup.

I am a trained high-end multi-cultural poly-lingual professional educator athlete who rides a bike. I am a well-trained all-weather athlete. I have hundreds of teachers. They are all wonderful people. They turned me into the freak of nature I am today. I blame them. But it is not every day you get to work with super people. Olympiads. People who live the insanity of super athletes.

I am technologically advanced and my setup is perfection for what I do with it. I push the limits of what is possible with epoxy glue and tape. I make strong stuff. My seat mounts are molded epoxy. Steel reinforced epoxy. I work with professionals who work with bikes and accessories. I share what I know freely without ego. Something I see a lot of on this forum. Ego. It ain’t right until you broke it a few times. My Subaru is proof. Don’t chew on my apple cord.

Mail me. Ask a question. If I know the answer, I will tell you what you can do safely, easily. Straight up without technobabble. If I think it will break, I will tell you. But I will leave the solution up to your creativity. I check the forum while out on my rides. Remember, I care about you. Not that other guy who irritates me.

Awe. She wanted to snuggle. This kitten has the attention span of a gnat circling your coffee cup.

Cats should not have garlic. Maybe pasta sauce will slow her down for a while. Hey! It worked! Squeaky wheel gets the grease! Telinga radar!!

I am not the man they think I am at home. When you meet people and show them your bike and they tell you they saw you riding a month ago, you made an impression. I can’t remember half the bikers I pass on the street. But people remember me from a month ago? Geeze.

When a woman says she saw a guy with muscles and abs riding my bike a month ago. Well, i must have been making a burger run.
Don’t eat that dammit!!!

Eat Sleep Ride Repeat
—Rider of the Storm
 

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Makingitwork6999

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… the next morning

I wanted to talk about jackets. What is the difference between a $400 jacket and a $40 jacket. Not a lot. But it all boils down to quality and workmanship. I have four jackets here. Two Joe Rockets, a Fly, and a Fieldsheer.

Okay. What is a Fieldsheer?

This is a budget jacket often purchased in bulk online and often not carried by higher-end motorcycle shops.

About the kitten…

I woke up to discover that she had been sleeping in my armpit. She put her head up and sneezed all over me. My revenge later is she will stink and my wife will need to give her a bath. Know what matters in life, and everything will come into play perfectly.

… and I gotta do a post on pants. But pants are a you thing. Not a me thing.

Now jackets. What is important? Impact and abrasion protection. And you gotta be a babe magnet. Right??

If you are a woman, you want that quality guy to respect you. You wont get respect riding around in spandex.

Is the material strong enough to protect against abrasion? How would you know? Got a belt sander? Not a good idea. Right?

There are mesh jackets and armored rain jackets. So many choices. Even lycra skin armor suits. Like the ones I wear.

Why do I wear all the styles? Because this is how I know what is good and what is bad.

And I can help you make better choices.

All jackets should have enhanced visibility features. Reflectivity. But some are just bright colors. At night, my black jacket reflects more than my red jacket. How do I know? I have a tolltag photo to prove it. I am a black shadow with a brilliant white stripe.

There are subtle ways to detect issues on the rack before you buy. Look closely for defects. Small zippers and snaps are bad. You want big and tough. The cheap jackets have eyelets in places. Wow. Eyelets? This is not a Converse all-star sneaker. What the hell are eyelets for? Venting? Style?

The mesh jackets fray and pill immediately when the super velcro touches the wrong place. This does not mean it wont protect you. Mesh jackets rely on the padding. The plates. The thickness of the multi-layered mesh.

The nylon heavy Joe Rocket jacket was my old track jumping jacket. I wore plastic armor over top of it. I took some pretty solid hits and falls. Bounced off a tree once. Ooo. That is one I want to forget. But the jacket did the job. I am too big for it now.

Look at the threading of each jacket. Feel the materials. Pull out the armor. The cheaper armor wont flex. It is crap. It is skate helmet padding. Garbage.

Cheap fabric tends to fold easy. It pills up fast. Threads come loose at the seams. This is where the threads are joined or sewn back into the fabric. Watch videos on how clothes are made. I do. I can make a motorcycle seat cover. I can make an oven mitt. And that weird thing that looks like a gingerbread man but is horrifying. Honestly, I could make a jacket. I just don’t want to try. It is a lot of planning and my sewing machine is a piece of crap.

So. What do I know? The Fly jacket fits better. Even with the armor in. The Fieldsheer jacket is okay on a budget. But not a pro jacket. I ride with Fly. Period. The budget jacket is a non-starter. I wont wear it.
 

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Makingitwork6999

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Back protectors and armor.

The best armor flexes. It moves with you. The Fieldsheer armor does not flex. It is hard. All my other Jackets including Joe Rocket move with me. Jangan makan!!!

The good jackets have breathable liners. Integrated padding. Then, pockets to armor up. Jangan makan!!!

10 years later and not a stitch missing. Okay. The Fly jacket lost a snap. But i can re-install snaps. I can sew. I know sh!t.

The Joe Rocket jacket has zipper protectors for times when you don’t have a liner. All the zippers are extra large. High grade. I know clothes. I know armored clothes. I am a professional skier. I am no Tinkerbell.

The Joe Rocket wins for being the most articulate. But. The Fly wins for fit. Articulation is not everything. Shoulder and arm movement are major concerns. You need to steer. That is big thing. Right? Avoiding objects?

Look at my yellow-green armor. The chest is not articulated. It makes me look so fat!

My gear is serious. I have invested thousands in body armor. I am not joking. It is why I am still alive today and can move about like a super 55 year old. This is no joke. Wanna be mobile at my age? Armor up.
 

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Makingitwork6999

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What you see here is a pattern for high grade equipment. Look at the sleeves for both the Joe Rocket and the Fly jackets. See the snaps that allow me to open the sleeves for body armor. Yup. That is what you want! Jangan makan!! Dammit. Kittens will eat anything. The waist is adjustable. The jacket should never flap in the wind at your waist. Arm flapping is not good. All my gear has a little flap. My best fitting gear only flaps at the wrist. And only a small flutter.

Wind flap is a way to determine the proper fit of your jacket. Got wind flap? Make fit changes. Try adding snaps to the arms. Fold the arms up and snap them tight. You don’t need to buy a new jacket. Ask your mom to help.

I wish I could fix my butt flap problem.

What are you eating now??? Stop. Gimmie that.

Can I eliminate flutter by wearing a sweatshirt underneath? Yes! Can I cut the sleeves off the sweatshirt? Yes. Anything for a better fit. Can I just wear the torn sleeves for the sweatshirt underneath? Hahahahahahaha. …. Ahem….Yes.
 

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Makingitwork6999

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Sleeves are a big wind drag issue. When the wrists let the wind in, your jacket inflates and flaps. Yes. Like a limp balloon. You want sleeves that velcro or snap shut. You want to seal the cold out. You want to be able to wear a wind breaker under your sleeves. Go to the store with a windbreaker jacket. Wear it under the coat you intend to buy.

Look at how the sleeves end in my photos. Which one is the cheap one? The one on the bottom. Look at how it is sewn. Feel the material. Feel the toughness. Stop that. Stop. Stop. Stop.

The budget jacket feels like a ski jacket. Not a motorcycle jacket.

The velcro ends are not strong. They wont last. Snaps are better but they can rip free of the material. It is a toss up. The important thing is that the material will protect you from an abrasive burn. Then you need to think adout seasonal concerns. How warm is this jacket? Can I layer under the sleeves?
 

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Makingitwork6999

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What is articulated armor? Well hmmm. It is armor you want. You do not want to be the Black Knight. None shall pass!! You need to move. You do not want to be 80’s Robocop. You just don’t. Here dammit! Play with that. Focus!!! Focus!!! Whew! Back to business.

You don’t want to crash like a 2x4 falling from a pickup truck. You want articulated or flexible armor. This is where the budget jacket armor fails.

After crashing a thousand times, I have learned that you need to move your spine in a crash, as you orient yourself away from very bad body positions. Such as sliding on your face.

Yes. You can say it. Articulated armor is super cool. But more importantly, you wont develop a slipped disk in your spine. Okay. You might say… how can he say that? Well the truth is you can cause such an injury falling out of bed. But most such injuries occur when your spine cannot move freely in two or more joints, then the third or fourth joint takes a hit. A bad one. Get it?

Then you might say… what does he know? He is not a doctor! Well, a doctor is not a guy who crushes his spine every weekend and then gets himself scanned and analyzed like the guys on Star Trek regularly. Yes. By 30, I had a dim green glow in dark rooms. My home mountain was too close to Three Mile Island. I was asked by the NRC not to drive within a mile of the river.

The MRI people knew my name and my face. That, my friends, is pretty bad. Got a back problem? We can talk. I know everything there is to know about non-invasive therapy. Repeat after me. Ooooooaaaaahmmm.
 

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Makingitwork6999

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How do you get articulated armor when you don’t have it? Duct tape and cardboard. Well. I would buy some foam rubber. Even the Joe Rocket arm guards are complete crap.

Arm guards are rarely articulated. They should be. I have a set shown above in black.

Need cheap articulated armor? Foam rubber, 3M spray glue and a sweatshirt from a thrift store. Want to ride like me? Get creative.

I cut out my own armor padding from rectangular rubber sheets. I fold it and tape it. Seen my tire patch video where I used it to make a camera mount??

How do I make time for this? I do not work 9 to 5. I do not sleep every night. So I have a lot of time to do stuff. I am writing this blog…. Right??

I have a post graduate education level. So I have been to college. It is worth it? To go to school these days? Hard to say. My phone knows more than I ever did. My apparent IQ is hmmm 220. So. Read my stuff. Learn more stuff. I am a smartass. People help me be a smarterass. So. I am advancing more quickly than most people. I do not hang out at the coffee machine. My office operates at the speed limit.

Ahdoo!!! jari kaki saya!!! Dammit!!
 

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Makingitwork6999

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There’s a lot of good and bad between each of the jackets. On the high-end the difference can be as much as $100. This does not mean that one jacket is better than the other. What makes the jackets different are very specific elements of how the jacket is constructed.

The cheapest of the jackets just has a lot of very weak points throughout the jacket including the stitching. On the most expensive jackets the weakest point is usually the armor. Sometimes it is a snap on a sleeve or on the front of the jacket. But it is rare that all of the fasteners will fail at the same time. This is not to say that this does not happen. I have seen an entire fleet of Columbia ski jackets fail right out of the box. Entire team of ski instructors put all the jackets on the same time and one -by-one the zippers broke. All of them broken within five minutes. The zippers had a locking clip. So there was no way to unzip once the pull snapped off. So everyone was trapped in their outfits. Pants. Jackets. All of it. Such a riot.

If you’ve been reading any of my posts then you understand that I am a function guy. I use the features of things until there are no features left to use. It might take me a week to discover all of the features of something but I will eventually discover it. The Fieldsheer jacket has a complete lack of features. It is a budget jacket. Yes. It has venting. It has armor pockets. But this is expected of every jacket. But gosh darnit, the backplate feels like I am wearing a manhole cover. It does!!! I removed it. And well, it still feels weird.

My god! That backplate is a speed bump somone stole from Interstate 35E in Dallas. It is not a proper backplate. It is a child’s winter sled.

The budget jacket was DOA once I had it on. No way this was going to work. But some of my jackets could be fixed. I was willing to give it a whirl. Just like this kitten. Oh lord she can fart.

A jacket need to fit your neck, arms and waist. Get the basics first. Then. Can you move in the jacket. Does it vent? Does it reflect? Does it do all these things properly? Will the arms flap? Grab one arm with the other arm. How much material is loose and flappy?

How much of your gut will flap in the wind? How much material is too much material? Can the jacket be pulled tight? Some jackets have fit features. Like waste belts with velcro.

Whatever your jacket choice, try and remember that you were given options and you chose the best choice. Even if that choice was complete crap. Be prepared to make bad purchase choices. Do not spend a lot of money unless you are certain of your selection. I buy a lot of stuff. I know what works. Only because I buy a lot of stuff, then I crash in it.
 

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Makingitwork6999

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The Fieldsheer jacket had outrageous fit issues. I needed to be super thin with no beer gut and a 50 inch chest. Well. I have old man 8 pack abs and a 52 inch chest so no freaking way. The front barely covered my belly but the back hung down past my rump. Off, off off off off… seriously.

So. If you look below you will see a useless feature of the Fieldsheer. Two front belt loops. No back loops. These loops are at my belly button. So. No way they do anything at all. Remember this is a 3xl jacket that should be one size too big for me. It is wide enough, but one size too short. I need to be a human squashtart to wear this jacket.

The venting and pockets are okay. The reflectivity is great. But wow. I have problems with mobility in this jacket. I bought it new for $15.
 

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Makingitwork6999

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I am not against this brand or that brand. You just have to remember that something will work for you and something else will work for them. You just cannot all wear the same stuff and have the same feelings. This is why there is such a huge variety of clothing out there. Some jackets have a lot of protection up high. And some seem to have a lot more protection down low. Some are vented around the chest. Some have vents under the armpits.

I know what I like. I use my vents all the time. So many temperature changes in Texas.

One of the things that is very important about a jacket it’s not so much what happens at your shoulders, but what happens down around your waist. If you’re going to get stabbed after a fall, the thing that will cause you to meet your maker is the object that gets you in the gut. I am well aware of this. I had a quarter-sized hole in my belly pack after a fall. I should have died on that fall. Not from the blunt trauma. But more or less a puncture to the stomach. I was perfectly fine. Thanks to a belly pack and a leather wallet. What punctured the pack? The handlebar of the bike. The bouncing sheered off the bar end. Sharpening it. The third bounce sent the bar into my stomach. Just another day on the farm for me.
 

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Makingitwork6999

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So. I have all sorts of armor. Each has weak points. I decide what to wear and I am keenly aware of how to protect myself in a fall. During each fall, my brain goes into protect mode. This comes from years, decades of high-speed repeated snowboard falls. Yeah. I am that guy.

The fly jacket has the best wrist protection. The sleeves are longest. And I am genetically related to the Bornean Orangutan so this serves me well.

The Joe Rocket jackets are toughest. The summer jacket is the most comfortable mesh jacket. But. The Fly jacket quality is better. The Fieldsheer just is not there. It is a budget jacket.

How do I solve all these weak points? Well. I take all my jackets apart and use the best pieces. I mix and match. This armor goes in that jacket. This liner is from this jacket. But I wear it in that jacket. I wear one jacket inside the other jacket. See my earlier posts on layering.

This armor is layered with that parka. These three layers go together. And so on.

I never wear the prescribed item over a shirt. I just don’t. Everything is layered and assembled from something else. I am the king of create. I am mechanically inclined. I screw up everything and make something new and better. I am the guy who went to Engineering college to be a better athlete. Why? What are you without your gear? A person with a very short life expectancy.

Two people this week told me about their friends who passed away in town. So sad. My heart goes out to them. Their stories are similar. Big egos. Fast bikes. Under equipped. Very different accidents. The car driver was part of the equation. Some people think I play in a fantasy world. They see how I dress and giggle. Then, the ten year old walks up to me and asks if I have scars or broken anything. Who is the smarter one? Technically, I have never broken a bone. So. Pro skier. Pro snowboarder who rode the ice sheets in the frigid northeast. No broken bones.

I buy the stuff that won’t sell, super cheap. I mix it in with the high-end stuff for maximum effect. I am the guy who uses his skiing armor for his riding. Why? Because it is awesome! Wanna know if it works? Are you prepared to fall off your couch to see if it works? Got your phone on video mode? How far away is the ER? I know it works because I crash in it. Yeah. I test it. You can do this yourself at your own risk in your living room. But. You never heard me tell you it was okay.

I am a professional intelligent crash test dummy. A paradox of kinesiology and the interruption thereof. I call it. Thunderology. The study of humans in motion as they strike other sizable objects and send accessories flying. Such as iPhones and shoes.

I am the guy who parks his bike in front of the motorcycle gear shop in the pouring rain because I want results! People know me. Yeah. I am that guy. I am rain shopping. Perfecting and tweaking.

I am also the guy who rides the ski lift in pouring rain with his snowboard because I know it is snowing frisbees on the summit. Yes. I am insane… from a certain perspective. I am out in the worst miserable weather. I operate at a whole different level.
 

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Makingitwork6999

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Okay. So there are a dozen or so very good brands out there to choose from. And maybe a hundred knock-offs. These will come and go. Your choices will be best made by wearing the jacket, then doing gym warm-ups in the rack area of your store. Move in your jacket. Then inspect the various features. Snap and unsnap stuff. My Fly jacket busted the zipper in the first year because of a wire-thin zipper pull. A stupid error on a great jacket.

Why don’t I wear a skirted jacket? Oh god. This is so 90’s. It is a terrible throwback to a ski jacket style. As a snowboarder, you cannot crash in a skirted jacket. You just cannot move right. This is why snowboarders wear a short parka-style coat. Okay. i admit it. I was a snowboarder in a skirted jacket. I was so wrong in my style choices. I had a thick head. I wanted to have that image of professionalism. But those guys are years behind in functional styles.

So, I repaired the Fly jacket. So much effort for a zipper. Right??

Now I blaze my own trail and wear what I want. When it is cold, I wear a skirt under the Fly jacket. Just enough to block the wind, not flap, and keep my bum warm. Sometimes you just need to adapt. The skirt is a Hot Rod Power Tour rain jacket that runs long for the size. A simple functional rain solution. My rain gear is all rolled up in my yellow-green rain bag on my back seat. It is always with me. When the sun goes down, I wear it.

If… AND ONLY IF… I know my sh!t, please hit the like button on every post!!! Only you can affirm that I know my stuff. What if I am a Dunning Kruger like that other guy? How would I know I am an idiot? Maybe my brain is not wired to know I am stupid. Maybe I am a llama that thinks I am a sheep dog. Right? Thank you!!!
 

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Makingitwork6999

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Why kittens need boundaries.

My wife gets the first piece of toast tomorrow.

Could this be a potential solution to cold bleachers at football games? Who knows!!!
 

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