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Heated grips / clothes - make your own!

Discussion in 'Modifications and Projects' at netrider.net.au started by mattb, May 12, 2008.

  1. There's heaps on Google, here's just one good example, on how to make your own heated motorcycle clothes. Thing is, these serve as instructions on making heated grips as well, and the process is much more simple. It's well worth doing this sort of stuff: I have home-made Draggins, cost about $30 - $40 all up; when my battery died, did a bit of research and for $10 from Jaycar I replaced it with a permanent capacitor. It's so much more satisfying to extend the bike experience to things done with your own hands. It also means you get all the nice things without needing a big budget.


  2. And then it rains.

    Who else likes the smell of burnt hair?
  3. Authored by a cheapskate, maybe send this link to FL
  4. rrreeeeooooooowwwwwwww!
  5. Because of course you can't waterproof electrics!

    "But the companies sell them!"
    Yes son, but when it's made by a company or experts, magic is installed, and we all know you can't make or do the work on your bike and gear yourself, you have to pay somebody else otherwise everything will blow up. I wish somebody had told me this before I started doing all my own electrical mods on the SR!

    Reminds me of the few times I was consdescendingly told that "Somehow I think your home-made Draggins are going to cost as much as the shop ones". $30 later and I was told instead that they won't hold in an accident (again when they're sewn in the factory, it's magic special sewing that's used).

    There's something seriously wrong with contemporary attitudes.

    Matt :)
  6. Right on! The prices for commercial heated vests are criminal. I know a few folks who have made their own heated grips too, it ain't magic, it's basic sleeverolluppery.

    You, sir, are being a knob.

  7. Oh I'm sorry, where in 12 words did you manage to come up with condescending? Or even contemporary attitude? Don't be silly. So I imagined going down the highway in a sleeveless home made electric vest, in the rain, jumping from electric shock. Sue me.

    My brother is a sparky, and I'm fairly handy myself, so electric shock is just one of those things, I happen to find amusing. I can do building me. I even made my own clock bracket for the bike. Contemporary is too big of a word for me to google anyway.

    You were wrong about the magic that the companies put in electrics. Its not magic, its just plain everyday smoke. And if you let the smoke out, your vest aint gonna work anyway. So pull your head out the sand and have a giggle now and again, it won't hurt I promise.

    Now if you can forgive me for that, I am actually more interested in your capacitor setup, if you care to share any info with us about that. Is it the sort of thing that you could keep a spare charged and handy for when you accidentally leave the lights on? For example, two wired for charging, but only one being used in the electrics of the bike, so the spare would always be full? Then put it on a switch or something for emergency starts?
  8. Hey VTR, it's all cool - that smiley I added was in earnest, to indicate that while unimpressed with the tendency to look straight to the problem when another suggests something (let's face, it's a common and annoying habit of people...and surely you can see how it appeared to be what I was greeted with here) yet I wasn't being indignant in any serious (or un-selfconsciously righteous) way. By "contemporary" I'm referring to the fact that it's something I never came across among the older men I grew up around, but I come across it a lot now - perhaps we're increasingly internalising the self-defeating notions of an increasingly aggressive consumer culture. Also, read my post again regarding condescension : I'm clearly not imputing it to any of the replies in this thread.

    Regarding the capacitor I can't say a lot. My SR500 doesn't need a battery to start or run - it is kick-start only - and so it is possible to just replace it with the capacitor (I used 10000uF 40V - I've heard varying opinions on this). I don't understand much about electrics, so a sparky would be able to answer your question, but the suitability of the capacitor in this case is due to the SR's virtue and vice - than damned kickstart. What you raise is an interesting question. Certainly, when I turn my bike on now, I get no lights at all, but apparently others sometimes get just a flash of light at the neutral light - that's hardly enough to give power to an electric start.


    (Who / What's "FL"?)
  9. FL is Falcon Lord. He's a bit of a wally.

    Have a shot mate - nothing to loose!
  10. oi mattb.

    i think your on the right track .... well half on the right track.
    the electric vest seems a tad silly to me, just snug up in your leathers with the liner in ... it should be plenty shouldnt it?

    i guess raincoats were also invented to keep the rain off your body.
    when you wearing a vest im guessing it should keep it dry too, right?
    i was hoping that was the first thing in mind.

    running your bike off a capacitor is a new one ... wish it could be done for electric start bikes too!!

    i like the fact you made your own draggins too ... but just remember that the stitching in the factories isnt magic, its just very bloody strong thread. if dont have the right thread strength or dont fix it at the end properly, your kevlar could quite easily have a short life expectancy.

    if youve done all your mods right though they should be great!

    keep up the inventiveness!
  11. Hey, sweet matt, maybe I just had a guilty conscience?

    Yeah, I realsied the stupidity of my question when I was climbing into bed last night, of course you have a kickstart. A perfect solution to that kind of problem though.

    What did you use as thread on your DIY draggins? I have been looking at a dacron, but is there a kevlar alternative to that too? I wanna do a Tshirt lined with it, to go with my summer gear, and make up a set of thermals with the lining as well, for everything else.
  12. Hey.

    Regarding the thread and sewing for the jeans, I bought a leather sewing awl, with leather / tent thread. You guys are right - it needs to be some damn serious stitching, half-way measures will mean half-way protection, and this is one area where nothing would do so well as a machine. Still, it doesn't have to be the 'best possible', it just has to be 'good enough'. With the awl you do a double stitch: basically thread running one side of the jeans, entering through loops stitched in through the other side. It's actually a bit of a pain; a long and tiring process, if (as in my case) you're sewing leather and aiming to do it properly. I got about 2x1.5m of leather of eBay for $10. I cut out the patches using the jeans (I bought some thick cheap jeans - $20) as a template, and using a mate's Draggins for the design template (as well as reference to my experience of falling off the bike and knowing how easily the pants can slide up and down and around - I say nothing amounts to over-kill when it comes to the area of coverage). I'm yet to add some armour. Really, if the cost of the jeans from the shop - combined with all the money your bike needs spent on it - is not a problem for you then I wouldn't bother, but if frugality is relatively necessary (and off course there's pleasure just in the exercise / achievement itself) then it's not that hard, and you're left with the money to buy those things you can't make - a good back-protector, swing-arm parts....(of course I've found a fellow who can machine those swing-arm parts...:)) Factory made protective jeans on eBay have been dropping in price and growing in availability since I made my jeans. VTR - the next step for me is to find a material or design suitable to making a summer jacket too. Let us know how you go - making summer protection is a whole lot more complicated.

    I should add: you sew the leather inside the jeans, not outside, unless you're a bit of a cowboy! (I've seen it done on the outside - not good!)

    The main thing that interests me about the electric vest thing is actually its application to heated grips.

  13. Congratulations on having a go. I guess someone must have bodged up the first pair of heated handgrips, the first chain oiler, the first gear indicator, the first rev limiter and all the other "firsts" that we often take for granted. Who cares if the one we made at home isn't the prettiest, carbon-fibreiest, billet aluminiest. If it does the job, and we're happy with it, what else matters? If it saves you a wad of cash, so much the better.

    My SR is festooned with odd bits I've made (exhaust rocker oilway, TDC blanking plug, instrument binnacle, the terrifying folding brake lever) and the SZR has the Snotoiler, a GPS screen (made from a palm pilot and an rs232 interface) and modified footpeg mounts. They make my life a little easier, and don't harm anyone else.

    Go forth and invent! Keep on bodgin'.
  14. My wife has been reading a bit of this with interest. Now she wants the rear seat heated for her tushy on the VTR. Thanks fellas :roll: :roll: would you recommend the copper or the nichrome for backsides?
  15. Where did you get the kevlar material mattb? My girlfriend looked at draggins in jeans an cargos and neither fir her well, plus the kevlar in the knees is too low as she is shorter. Of course you could get custom draggins made from the factory at extra expense, but that makes them obviously, more expensive!
  16. LOL. Instead of saving a little bit of money (yes, it really is only a little bit, especially when you factor in the time you've spent) and having the attitude of "it doesn't have to be the 'best possible', it just has to be 'good enough' ", consider buying a product which has undergone ACTUAL thorough research and development.

    This way the rest of us don't have to put up with more laws, increased restrictions, etc. when you:

    have an accident as a result of, or
    are seriously injured through the reliance upon

    your dodgy equipment.
  17. Oh, please! Leather has been tested before - officially and unofficially. And yes, good enough means good enough - that is, it does the job it has to do! Best possible can often simply be overkill.

    Don't put people down who have the intelligence and skill to produce something themselves, that performs its duty well.

    And anyway, it isn't your money to save - it is the person making the item themselves. They make something that does the job fine, saves them money, and they enjoy the process and the satisfaction.

    Your attitude is astounding!
  18. :shock: Sounds like an apt description!
    That's also on the list. Is this a factory kit or did you make it? The factory ones are often driven by pressure from the running engine and something like that seems necessary - for I thought of just making a drip drip set up over the chain, but then if I forget to turn it off when stopped (very likely!), there could be disaster! Certainly there's something about an SR that cries out for all the mods (including the sort that strip it down) that you can think of!

    VTR - I have looked (for my partner) at the heated car seat covers on eBay, which are so cheap, and shaped like an mc seat, and I've wondered about making a waterproof pocket for them. If you did use one the length of the seat, it would be safer (in terms of being able to secure it) than a square pad simply covering the pillion seat on your type of bike.

    Robbie I didn't use kevlar, I used a large piece of leather which I got off eBay for $10. It's a pain to stitch properly (though curiously fun also), but done right is adequate and comfy (see my post above for a run down). It also makes a great talking point! Another option is to use a pair of tragic 80's leather pants, which are cheap on eBay if you're skinny, and cut them up (what a loss!) to sew inside the jeans; but it's not at all difficult to cut the leather into proper shapes.

    David, here's some DIY reserach and development http://www.gewaenderwerk.de/motorrad/index2.html If you're the sort of person who dreams of the sewing machines you'd like to own, then maybe you'd understand! :grin:

    There's a 4.5m x 0.3m piece of Kevlar on eBay at the moment. I've bidded on it simply because it's so rare, but I don't care if somebody goes and outbids me as I've got my gear now.

    Another thing to add about the patches in my jeans, is that as I fatten (like a sacrificial lamb to the god Diabetes) I can just cut out the leather patches and sew them into a new pair of jeans. NB that the same applies to your Draggins - you don't need to buy new ones repeatedly.

  19. Home made. The first one used a Bunnings drip irrigation nozzle -the new one uses an air-mixture jet from a carby ($5 at the wrecker) to regulate the drip rate.

    SnotOiler how-to
  20. This has to be a troll right?

    Please say it is so, because if you are really serious about this misguided, stupid and annoyingly retarded opinion, then you possible could be the worlds biggest pole smoking, skin flute playing knob..

    Now I'm off to hand repair my split motorcycle boots rather than just buying a pretested and developed new boot. I pray this won't drive your precious insurance premiums up too much.