How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

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dale914
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How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by dale914 » Thu Dec 05, 2019 12:38 am

This is my first winter with the Ural and it's my only vehicle in Seattle. I have the intentions of riding it all year round, my commute is typically 11 miles on Interstate 5. Seattle every now and again gets snowy and icy days in which case I may be able to take the train to work or just go real safe like. Am I being naive? Is this completely feasible or completely stupid? Any winter time precautions that I need to take?
RC20, I saw that you studded your tires and that seems pretty rad, but possibly not necessary for most of my I-5 commuting?
From those of you who have ridden through the winters, anything that I need to keep in mind, change, adapt? So far I keep rubber boots/pants/jacket in the trunk and get real grumpy on my 3am downpour commutes, but what else should I keep in mind?
This is also my first winter through Seattle (previous winters were in Idaho, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Volgograd, Switzerland, so I am aware of what snow and cold are), so anything I need to know/expect? I'm expecting it to usually be just barely above freezing, lots of rain/mist/fog with a few surprise days of snow/ice.
I have the mud shin guards in place, and I'm aware that a windshield, guarded handle bars, heated handle bars and clothing would make my life better, but not sure that I need to go down those roads just yet.
I have the gear up, so I figure that if I get into a pinch, the 2WD should help, but will the factory tires be adequate???
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by AndyH » Thu Dec 05, 2019 2:38 am

It was 104 F / 40 C today.
If it ever snows I will be reading the responses to this post :)
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by Lokiboy » Thu Dec 05, 2019 5:16 am

A windshield makes a huge difference. Other than that dress for the weather you should be fine.
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by Tomcatfixer » Thu Dec 05, 2019 6:27 am

W.a.s.h your bike periodically (or at least give it a good rinse). The steel used in Ural construction is quite prone to corrosion, so don't help it by allowing road salt or calcium chloride to remain on the bike.

2019-12-05 05.23.40.jpg
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2015 Ural cT "Mobile Chernobyl", 2001 Ural Patrol "Little Red Bear", 1999 Ural Tourist "The RPOC", Mid-Nineties Ural Tourist "The Heap", 1994 Honda VFR750F

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2001 Buell Blast! - - - - - - - 2005 Yamaha FJR1300
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by stagewex » Thu Dec 05, 2019 6:56 am

I do but not to commute, just for fun. Big difference when you Have-To rather than Want-To. Riding any of my bikes can span from pleasure to challenge.
I'll ride in first-snow's before the salt spreaders get out there. Otherwise cold is just a state of mind, use common-sense on how you dress safely and warmly.

Aircooled bikes love the cold & Winter.
Stagewex

Current Herd all running amok:
2019 Honda CRF450L (Elec Start)
2008 Vespa 150S (Elec & Kick Start)
2007 Ural Patrol (2WD, Elec & Kick Start)
2006 Honda "Big Ruckus" PS250 (Elec Start)
1991 Honda XR250L (Kick Start Only) *NOT running amok, out for Bottom & Top-End Rebuild.
1986 Yamaha BW200ES (Elec & Kick Start)

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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by wooden nickel » Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:47 am

If you can find one, get a lap robe. For me the robe makes about a 15 degree difference in what feels comfortable. It also keeps snow off your saddle when you park.
I would also look for a heated visor for your helmet. I use a modular helmet and when I ride over 5 miles below 20 degrees even with a balaclava and a full face helmet, I get a cold dagger of wind at the base of my skull. I find that a couple wraps with one of those circular endless scarves at the interface of the helmet to coat, keeps the inside of the helmet comfy.
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by :FI:Igor » Thu Dec 05, 2019 7:55 am

Tomcat, Love that picture! Reminds me of a video a few years ago. Weather announcer had a background video showing that the interstate through town was closed due to snow, but if you looked close, you'd see a lone Ural!
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by Ammo » Thu Dec 05, 2019 8:13 am

Image

ride in the snow just for fun now but I’ve commuted

ain’t nothing to it but to do it
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by stickerbush » Thu Dec 05, 2019 9:00 am

dale914 wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 12:38 am
This is my first winter with the Ural and it's my only vehicle in Seattle.

This is also my first winter through Seattle (previous winters were in Idaho, Illinois, Minnesota, Michigan, Volgograd, Switzerland, so I am aware of what snow and cold are), so anything I need to know/expect? I'm expecting it to usually be just barely above freezing, lots of rain/mist/fog with a few surprise days of snow/ice.
The road conditions will likely be better than the other areas you mention. However, the drivers will be worse, most do not know how to drive in snow and ice. Be extra careful!

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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by atlasheating » Thu Dec 05, 2019 9:06 am

I have lived in the seattle area most of my life. We will get snow a couple of times a year, maybe. usually not more than a couple of inches. Last winter we had snow. I took my 2wd URAL out in the 2" of snow and I could not tell any difference using 2wd or 1wd for traction. Then it snowed some more about 6 or 8". I took the Ural out again and got stuck right in front of my driveway. I had the tock tires on. Windshield is a must.

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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by Lokiboy » Thu Dec 05, 2019 9:15 am

Tomcatfixer wrote:
Thu Dec 05, 2019 6:27 am
W.a.s.h your bike periodically (or at least give it a good rinse). The steel used in Ural construction is quite prone to corrosion, so don't help it by allowing road salt or calcium chloride to remain on the bike.


2019-12-05 05.23.40.jpg
An excellent point. If new, or you buy used, If you can, I’d add to seal all the seams/joints with silicone. Also, do-it-yourself rubberized spray from a big box store for the bottom of the hack, the floor of the tub and trunk.
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by Pterodactyl » Thu Dec 05, 2019 9:29 am

I switch from motorcycle gear to snogo gear to stay warm......

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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by wooden nickel » Thu Dec 05, 2019 9:45 am

Also, do-it-yourself rubberized spray from a big box store for the bottom of the hack, the floor of the tub and trunk.
If you are going to do this, be sure to hit the underside of all fenders too. The spot on the front of the hack fender where it bolts to the hack step seems especially prone to rust.
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by SidecarDan » Thu Dec 05, 2019 10:43 am

I got caught by a news camera a few years ago.



When we have snow like that in the video I ride my Ural and leave my Charger at home in the carport.
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Re: How many ride all year round? (Particularly in snowy climates)

Post by windmill » Thu Dec 05, 2019 11:00 am

Daily, year round Puget Sound rider here.

Wet weather is the primary consideration here. A windscreen, and leg guards are the most practical accessories for our environment. Real waterproof commercial fishing rain gear is a big plus too.
Grundens rain gear, and atlas 460 rubber gloves from fishermans supply in Seattle keep me totally dry. A heavy wool coat and silk glove liners keep me warm.


Unless you intend to head up into the mountains on a regular basis to ride in the snow, I wouldn't mess with studs. We don't get much snow in the low lands, and it's typically gone after a couple of days. Expect no miracles with 2wd, but it can make a meaningful difference under certain conditions.
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