Year round commuting and travel. - Wrist Twisters
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post #1 of 15 Old 09-06-2020, 02:23 PM Thread Starter
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Year round commuting and travel.

Hey All,

I would like to start getting in to commuting just about year round. Most of the year it will be from Islip Long Island to NYC (50 miles each way). Then during the summer and holidays it will be Islip to NYC (50mi) then NYC to the Hamptons (about 130mi.) Then back to Islip another (55-60). I am going to need to carry some cloths and and some fitness equipment (bands, ropes, foam rollers a few other odds and ends nothing too big and possibly 2 kettlebells on the odd occasion.

OH! And to dd to all that, the roads on Long Island are not great and in NYC are even worse, the volume of traffic is rising because fewer people are taking mass transit.

Soooo two questions.

1) What are some things I should be considering/ thinking about/ know about (Bike, Gear weather ect...)?

2) Bike or Scooter suggestions? (I have thought about every thing from an ADV bike to Sport Tourer to a Scooter)
I have done some on the 919 and my Tuono. Both are okay, just not sure as year round commuters.

Looking forward to hearing and learning from every one.

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post #2 of 15 Old 09-07-2020, 11:18 AM
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If you want a bike that can tour and commute on, but don’t give up any of the performance, you might consider a KTM 1290 SDGT.

It is a sport touring bike, but heavy heavy emphasis on the sport.
A serious super naked.
Same engine and chassis as the SDR but:
larger gas tank, some wind protection (adequate but not as good as a full blown touring bike), electronic suspension, heated grips, cruise control, and integrated panniers that come off in 10 seconds and give you a naked(ish) look.

Electronic suspensions are great for mixed riding.
Comfort mode for interstate cruising and/or rough roads.
Street mode for a bit more firmess.
Sport mode for when really ride spirited on curvy roads.
Also has electronic pre-load so you can adjust based on cargo and passenger.

If the panniers aren’t quite enough storage for you, there are top case options available.

I owned one for about a year before I had an accident (insurance totaled it). I loved that bike.

I didn’t commute year round or on rainy days, but did commute quite a bit and I really enjoyed it.
I would commute to down into the mid 30s in the mornings if it was going to warm up by the afternoons.
I work off peak hours (very early start and late morning to early afternoon end) so don’t have to deal with heavy traffic.
So I would take the interstate in the morning, but then take backroads on the way home to have some fun.

I would wear base layers under my riding gear when commuting in the cold, and had 2 different thicknesses depending on temp.
I work a job that doesn’t require professional dress code though, so easy for me to change into shorts/jeans and a T-shirt and hat once I got to work.

I believe the first gen (2016-17) pricing is getting around the $10k range.
2nd gen is a bit more, new bikes typically can be found discounted off MSRP.
And it is believed (spy photos) that next years model will be based on the 3rd gen (2020) SDR that just came out this year; major frame and suspension updates, but will likely paying paying full retail when released.
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post #3 of 15 Old 09-07-2020, 06:19 PM
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I commuted on my 919 year-round in North Carolina for a few years. When looking for winter/cold riding gear, I found that wind and water proof outer shell with thin inner layers for insulation was a good combo. Even my mesh summer gloves were adequate down to the low 30s F if I put a rubber/nitrile glove over them.

I'm not familiar with the New York City climate, but my big concern would be black ice in the winter.

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post #4 of 15 Old 09-07-2020, 06:48 PM
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I remember absolutely dreading the drive from Bohemia/Ronkonkoma into the city, and that was in a metal cage, 20 years ago. I took 25 a lot to go to Flushing, Sunrise highway less so but did take it out east quite a bit. And the LIE for most everything else especially if going directly into the city. All of them were anxiety-inducing back then, and I've been back a few times since. WOW, blood pressure spikes on the regular. This coming from a Chicago-area driver/rider these days.

Good luck. I believe you'll need it.

Al
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post #5 of 15 Old 09-08-2020, 07:13 AM Thread Starter
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PC 1978 Love that bike. Going wait a few years for the gen 3 to come down in price. good advice on the gear! Thank you.

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post #6 of 15 Old 09-08-2020, 07:17 AM Thread Starter
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JK. Thanks for the tips. I will put them in to practice. NY wether gets coald and rainy. 40's and 30's tend to bite a little more / Feel colder and damper than N.C. At leastthats what my brother tells me. He Moved to Steel Creek just south of Charlotte a few yearsback.

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post #7 of 15 Old 09-08-2020, 07:21 AM Thread Starter
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Heeey A fellow Long Islander love it 🙂 You still on LI?

Yes tbe traffic is a beast in a cage or a train. The Bike calms me for some reason. Yes I am very weary of black Ice and wi be taking the train from time to time when the weather or conditions are favorable to black ice.

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post #8 of 15 Old 09-08-2020, 07:22 AM Thread Starter
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Does any one have any thoughts on the FJR? Found a few good deals on those?

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post #9 of 15 Old 09-08-2020, 11:39 AM
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I'd definitely get something with a windshield, hand guards, heated grips and an alternator big enough to use heated clothing, and pretty good gas mileage with cheap consumables. I got a CB500X for most of the same reasons, but we don't get an actual winter here in Northwest Arkansas. Madstad makes good aftermarket windshields.

FJR1300 isn't a bad choice at all.

2007 919, 2013 CB500X, 2009 Buell XB12R, 20+ bicycles
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post #10 of 15 Old 09-08-2020, 05:02 PM
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Unfortunately not any more. Moved to Illinois a while back and only get back to visit friends and family a few times a year if I'm lucky.

Definitely a good idea to have that backup. I'm told the LIRR gets a bad rap these days but I'd rather rough it on the train than slog though a LI blizzard on a motorcycle.

If you're shopping for weatherproof gear in the immediate future, Revzilla still has some stock of Scorpion EXO Yukon pants and jackets at a deep discount. I snagged the pair recently for what was to be upcoming (RIP) touring, and they're a pretty great value at the sale price. Like $275 for the jacket and $175 for pants, all armor including a roost protector, kidney belt, waterproofness, and fits really well.
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post #11 of 15 Old 09-09-2020, 01:44 PM
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I used to commute from Kew gardens into midtown on bike regularly.

You sure you want to carry all that stuff with you on the bike? Seems like a lot of extra weight that can bounce around on crappy nyc roads and possibly fall off or cause your bags / hard cases to dismount. It has happened to me before on the bqe and whitestone expressway.

It's more money, but might be worth it to have 2x of each stored where you need it. Applies to the exercise equipment you mentioned but also smaller things. For example I rode in with motorcycle boots, but kept work attire shoes at the office.

If commuting, go simple on the bike. Street parking in nyc is brutal. Fairings will get scraped when your bike inevitably gets knocked down or pushed around by cars. The 919 is a cheap simple bike with not much to break so stick with it.

Get a heated jacket liner and heated gloves. Anytime temps drop into the 50s, I find highway riding to get chilly and heated gear lets me take it comfortably down to the 20s.

Sign up for the NYMSTF checkpoint alert system. Hopefully you can save yourself from getting caught in a bullshit motorcycle only checkpoint. There are videos of NYPD halting all traffic on the LIE just to pull over motorcyclists and to create a jam to entice motorcyclists to split lanes and get pulled over.

I wish you good health and good luck. I commuted by bike for years but never want to ever work in manhattan again. I've been downed twice while commutting due to getting doored once and rear ended. I have absolutely no intention to commute into the city ever again.

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post #12 of 15 Old 09-14-2020, 06:44 PM
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I live on long island and commute via bike every day. If you plan on lane splitting, the 919 with a top case is the way to go. I commuted on it for the last 7 years. My solution to the winter was simply wearing a heated liner and gloves with wool socks. Nice and toasty, even down to the 'teens. Waterproof overalls for the rain. For longer rides, I have my Caponord 1200 travel pack which is a big bad ass bike with a giant windscreen, cruise control and heated grips, and plenty of storage. They're dirt cheap, too. I got mine for 6400 OTD and pay 40 bucks a month for full coverage as a 25 year old. I have ridden the 2013 fjr, and it's a nice bike but the heat it puts out on the legs is oppressive, and it's very heavy. The electric windscreen isn't big enough, and buffets my head bad. It would need something more.
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post #13 of 15 Old 09-15-2020, 07:27 AM Thread Starter
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Thank you for all the advice. Please keep it coming Bikes, Electrical needs/ limitations, Gear, Set up, Tires every thing and any thing.

For this year Ill be sticking with my 919 and 2007 Tuono. Unless a crazy good deal comes up

The 9er is set up with a 599 headlight and Renthal Ultra lows the Tuono is pretty much stock

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post #14 of 15 Old 09-16-2020, 07:06 PM
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If you run electrics, keep the 919 in a lower gear when moving around in stop and go traffic and keep revs up. I drained the battery once while running heated gear and dealing with traffic. For very cold weather, would recommend keeping a portable Li battery jump starter handy like the ones offered by antigravity just in case.

Where do you intend on parking in manhattan? Nypd is brutal and will tow for any minor infraction.



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post #15 of 15 Old 09-22-2020, 07:08 AM Thread Starter
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[QUOTE=Sckill;1369703]If you run electrics, keep the 919 in a lower gear when moving around in stop and go traffic and keep revs up. I drained the battery once while running heated gear and dealing with traffic. For very cold weather, would recommend keeping a portable Li battery jump starter handy like the ones offered by antigravity just in case.
Where do you intend on parking in manhattan? Nypd is brutal and will tow for any minor infraction.



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Thank you I never even thought about the battery draining when the bike is running. I am looking in to both plugin heated gear and gear that has its own battery yet can also plug in to the bike. any thoughts or suggetions?

I will definatly get a LI Jump starter.

Parking I have been okay sofar. There is good parking around the building and a lot of NYPD park there, so they tend to be more understanding and more carful than other drivers.

Any other suggestions folks.
Any other tips and tricks learned (rain gear, tires, brands/ manufatures that are better than others ect....

I am also thinking the pre and post ride check list might be a little more detailed, more maintainace because of rain?

Sorry for all the silly queations juat want be prepaierd as possible .

Thank you

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