• Review: Cycle Gear - Sedici Heated Gear (links included)

    For about two years now, I've been considering heated gear. Those who know me, know I ride year round as a funeral escort, so the weather gets dicey. It wasn't until last year did i get a set of heated glove from the funeral escort company (and I've been doing it 8 years now). They were gerbing brand gloves, and were plenty nice. I didnt care for the way I had to wire them up inside of my jacket, but it was functional.

    I've been considering buying a whole matching set of heated gear. It's not that I want to really extend the riding season on my connie, but I will use it as such...I just want to be comfortable riding for funerals. This year, I've really been watching the cycle gear catalogs and looking at their heated gear. Probably half a dozen times have I read, and re-read the ads and pricing. Well, I finally pulled the trigger and purchased the jacket liner, pants liner, and gloves. This review will touch on my first impressions after riding with it today, and give you a real world idea of what you're getting into with this stuff.

    Links to the products-

    -Jacket Liner: http://www.cyclegear.com/SEDICI-HOTW...acket-Liner-20

    -Pant Liner: http://www.cyclegear.com/SEDICI-HOTW...ed-Pants-Liner

    -Gloves: http://www.cyclegear.com/SEDICI-HOTW...ith-Controller

    -Jacket/Pant Controller: http://www.cyclegear.com/SEDICI-HOTW...-Controller-20

    Environmental variables-
    -Temp: 30 degrees F w/ cloud cover, read: no sun whatsoever
    -Riding jacket: Tourmaster Sabre w/liner in
    -Overpants: FirstGear HT's (non-air) without the liner
    -Freezeout Balaclava is in place
    -Freezeout glove liners are in place under the gloves
    -Was wearing simple dickeys work pants and a breathable sport polo...no long underwear, etc.

    Ok, so first off, the wiring is simple for the bike. Each of the pieces comes with a pigtail, so seeing as how I bought 3 pieces, I got 3 pigtails. Would be very handy for folks with multiple bikes. My wiring is a single pigtail to my relay controlled accessory fuse box, from there to a Y connector, that splits off to the individual controllers for the jacket liner and pants liner. The jacket liner is prewired to connect to the gloves, so that's a huge plus, and why I went this route when I already had heated gloves at my disposal.

    First I'll say, the gloves are excellent. The store I have at my disposal only had 2XL in, so I took those thinking they would be fine (all the cycle gear stuff runs small I find), and they are indeed too big. There is about an inch to an inch and a half of additional 'finger' at the end of the glove, so they are having an XL set shipped in so I can try those out. The use of them is extremely easy. There is a large controller button, rubberized, and I assume weatherproof on the top of the glove, so turning on the gloves is a cinch. 3 settings, high-med-low are show via multi colored LED under the button. Solid product.

    The jacket and pant liners are functional, but will take some getting used to. I was hoping more for a "water bottle" effect of the gear...heat dissipated evenly throughout. Such is not the case. I can feel the elements and while I was comfortable, I was not "snuggling under a blanket" comfortable. The controllers are kind of "popped out" on my left side, and it takes a little getting used to. It is nice that they are exposed for obvious reasons - you can change your settings on the fly....but being that the controllers are identical, you don't really know which one is which. I'll have to get out the label maker for that issue. I am also concerned about the weatherproof-ness of the controllers. Being that they are exposed, who knows how they will hold up. The controllers are also electronic, and don't retain any settings when they lose power. With the gerbings, if you knew what setting you needed, you can preset it, jam it into your jacket pocket, and never have to monkey with it again.

    The current draw is very noticeable if you have all 3 devices going. I have a LED volt meter on my dash, and normally it's pegged at 15+ volts at speed, even with my denali lights going. With all 3 pieces on, even at low temps, it was dancing between 13-14 volts, at speed. I turned it up to medium on my way home, and it was dancing around the 13 volt mark...so something to keep in mind. If you have it all going at full blast, and you're in stop and go traffic......you might want to start powering stuff down. I did shut down my denalis to keep the voltage in check.

    So, you start looking at the pricing and it seems pretty comparable with first gear, right? Well, first gear offers 1 year warranty on the liners themselves, and lifetime on the wiring. The Sedici stuff has a lifetime warranty, and cycle gear is kind of a 'no questions asked' kind of joint. They exchanged a 2 year old BILT jacket the other day with little else wrong than the cuff strap was coming un-sewn. I had gone in to inquire if they repair, or what I should do, and they just threw a new one at me....just had to fill out a small form. So, as long as cycle gear stays in business, you have a nice heated set of gear for life. Also, even the higher end stuff from gerbing, you are required to pay them to fix issues on your gear. I'm not entirely sure what the warranty is, or how that all works...but I've heard the guys at work say they have to pay like $50 on a repair claim from gerbing.

    On my final leg back to the storage unit to drop off the bike, I killed all the heated gear. Simply to test if it worked better than nothing at all. The liners themselves do block out a pretty good amount of wind, and the gloves are warm, even if not powered. I do recommend wearing high quality gear in tandem with the sedici hotwired stuff. It will allow you to run the heated gear at lower temps, and still be comfortable. Also, I highly suggest wearing glove liners. If your hands get too warm and start sweating, getting them back into the glove is a nightmare. The liners can absorb sweat, and provide a moisture barrier between your skin and the glove to prevent stankyness, and having to jam your hand back in there half moist.

    To wrap things up, this is definitely a set to consider. Compared to a set of gerbing gloves at ~$279, $150 seems like it's worth the risk. It was not hard to set up, it was functional, and after some discounts, it was pretty reasonably priced. I think I may change the routing of the controllers a little bit, but that is all personal preference.
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Review: Cycle Gear - Sedici Heated Gear (links included) started by Derick View original post
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