This time our Top Ten List moves up the scale to gift items between $100 and $200. This price range moves you to a different level of options for your favorite rider. Now, we’re starting to move away from the bargain basement into the beginnings of premium gear, and you’ll see that, while some items may have much cheaper competitive options available, a closer inspection reveals what makes these items superior.
We’ve tried to cover some absolute necessities for this time of year, some frivolous gifts, and some other items that might not have crossed your radar. Hopefully, these ideas will serve as inspiration for your moto-gift giving this holiday season. Again, post your suggestions in the comments.
10. Dowco Guardian WeatherAll Plus Motorcycle Cover, $107-$130
Riders who must keep their bikes outside know how tough the elements can be on them. Even motorcycles stored under carports need protection, and that is exactly what Dowco’s Guardian WeatherAll Plus Motorcycle Cover provides — in spades. The Guardian offers protection and durability that surpasses lesser covers. The tough 300-denier polyester fabric receives a water-proof coating and taped seams to keep the water out. Venting prevents moisture build-up under the cover, while the aluminized sections allow you to cover your bike immediately after riding without fear of burning. A soft interior liner protects your windshield. The covers are matched to motorcycle make and model and the correct model for any bike can be determined on the Dowco website.
9. Roadgear Thermo-Tec Underwear, $117
Riders have two methods for battling the cold that comes with early/late riding season motorcycling: Keep out the cold or keep in the warmth. Constructed to fit like long johns, Roadgear’s Thermo-Tec Underwear is lightweight and windproof while still allowing your body to breathe the way it likes. The fabric slides well under the outer layers of clothing. The unique zipper path on the shirt prevents the shirt and jacket closures from lining up and allowing drafts to enter. Although the shirt and pants are sold separately, the pair weighs in at $117 and can be bought directly from Roadgear.
8. Ogio Mach 3 Motorcycle Bag, $139
For the rider on the go, a knapsack is a primary means of carrying cargo. However, they offer a couple major flaws: They flap in the wind and, if accidentally left unzipped, allow lighter contents to blow away. Ogio’s Mach 3 Motorcycle Bag addresses the flapping problem with a streamlined, molded exterior. Since the bag opens on the side that is pressed against the rider’s back, the snugness of the shoulder straps prevents anything from falling out at speed. In addition to traditional knapsack features like a large central compartment and organizer pockets, the Mach 3 has many motorcycle-specific, features: Removable off-center hip belt won’t scratch gas tank, 360-degree retro reflective safety piping and logo, and an ergonomic, padded and fully adjustable riding specific shoulder straps with quick release exit buckle. See your local Ogio dealer.
7. Cortech Super 2.0 18L Tank Bag, $120
Tank bags are almost a necessity for urban riders, and Cortec has put together the right features to make the Super 2.0 18L Tank Bag a great option for both the short and long haul. The beefy 1680-denier ballistic polyester construction assures durability and helps it to maintain shape. The main compartment can be expanded for increased storage. The base has a non-slip, non-scratch diamond-patterned material. The stowaway rain cover is integrated into the bag itself. Ease of use items include the internal organizer and the hidden backpack straps. A port in the bag allows for the use of a water bladder or headphones. Most importantly, in this age of plastic fuel tanks, the Super 2.0 is available with either magnetic or strap mounting systems. Find a local dealer at the Cortech website.
6. Optimus Svea 123 Camp Stove, $120
Traveling motorcyclists need a way to cook their food once they get to the campground. The Svea 123 camp stove was introduced in 1955 and may well be the most popular camp stove ever made. While it prefers to use white gas (Coleman fuel), what distinguishes this little stove from others is that it can, in a pinch, run on gasoline — something all motorcyclists have at their campsite. The 19 oz., 4.3 in. x 5.1 in. stove packs big heating power and can run for 50 minutes on a single filling. With relatively few parts, getting 40 years of use out of the brass stove is relatively common. This may explain the stove’s almost cult-like following. Optimus offers more information about the Svea 123 stove.
5. HJC CL-17 Helmet, $150
The CL-17 is the recent update to HJC’s bestselling CL-16 helmet. The lightweight polycarbonate composite shell was designed with optimum aerodynamics in mind, while effective venting keeps your cranium cooler on hot days. The optically clear faceshield features 95% UV protection in addition to an anti-scratch coating. The visor accepts Pinlock anti-fog inserts for clear vision in poor weather. The RapidFire Shield Replacement System mount allows for easy, fast shield swapping as light conditions change. The interior liner is plush and comfortable. In fact, most of the CL-17’s features make it feel like a premium helmet costing hundreds more than the $150 list price. Available at your local HJC dealer.
4. GoPro HERO3 White Edition, $200
Yes, GoPro cameras have been around for a while, but until you’ve taken one for a ride with friends, you really don’t know what you’re missing. The HERO3 is 20% smaller and 15% lighter than the previous version while still recording 1080p video at 30 frames per second or 5-megapixel photos at up to 3 fps. Wi-Fi is built in and allows the camera to be controlled via the GoPro App. This could give your passenger something to do on those long stints between gas stops! The included waterproof housing will protect the camera to a depth 131 feet, so rain on your bike is nothing to fear. The plethora of available GoPro mounts will allow you to get really creative with your filmmaking. See your local GoPro dealer.
3. Sentinel Rainsuit Jacket & Pants, $160
Any rider who has been caught out in the rain without proper gear can attest to how miserable a wet ride can be. The same can be said for those who have bought cheaply made, inexpensive rain suits which are lucky to last for a short ride home. Quality rain gear is an investment in your future riding comfort. Tourmaster’s Sentinel Rainsuit is up to the task of long days in the rain. The breathable rip-stop nylon shell keeps the moisture your body produces from being trapped inside. The dreaded down-the-back drip is prevented by an hood that can be worn under a helmet. Sized to be worn over riding gear, the suit also features large cargo pockets and reflective piping. When not in use, a self-contained storage pouch helps the suit tuck away in a tank or saddlebag. Women’s sizes are also available on the Tourmaster website.
2. Aerostich WINDSTOPPER Electric Vest, $197
Cold weather riding can either be fun or miserable. With the Aerostich WINDSTOPPER Electric Vest under your riding gear, you can focus on the fun of winter riding. The heated collar is shortened and thinned to keep from bunching between the rider’s neck and jacket, while the vest’s trunk is lengthened to maximize the heated torso coverage. Both the cables and the vest itself pack away into the built-in pockets for compact storage. A fused, lighted cord and power switch are included and can be ordered with QuiConnect 2, SAE, or BMW connectors. A variety of accessories — including a thermostat — can be found on the Aerostich website.
1. Sena SMH10R Low Profile Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset & Intercom, $160-$180
Before the age of smart phones and all of their Bluetooth enabled communication, entertainment and navigational functions, you really needed a buddy with the same brand of helmet communication system to warrant installing a self-contained helmet communication system. Sena’s SMH10R Low Profile Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset & Intercom takes advantage of all those Bluetooth functions/devices in a compact package that produces clear sound while maintaining your helmet’s aerodynamics. Although slipping this communicator in the less than $200 price range is kind of cheating (list price is $219), the street price, if you look at the right retailers, is significantly lower. The first time you use your GPS’s voice navigation you’ll see that the Sena SMH10R isn’t just a convenience, it’s a safety tool.