Winter sports experts will tell you that if you plan to spend any amount of time out in the elements during winter in the upper Midwest, preservation of body core temperature is vital to your comfort, no matter what you are doing. So, that is the emphasis of most winter sports gear—creating an insulating layer between the cold outside and the body to prevent body heat loss. The ability to literally provide heat to the body core is even better, particularly when conditions include both low ambient air temperatures and high wind velocity. This increases heat loss when out on a motorcycle, and that is where the Ewool Pro+ heated vest comes in.Although the brand is Ewool, the vest is not made of wool. While wool has been the go-to material for warmth since the use of fiber for clothing began, it is not in the Pro+ vest formula. Instead, the exterior is 100 percent polyester exterior, and the interior lining is 94 percent polyester and 6 percent spandex to keep the vest light and smooth.
The bulk usually found in wool garments is absent, allowing for a sleek, snug fit under your favorite coat or jacket, or without a jacket over your base layer. Helping to keep the fit snug to maximize heat transfer to the body are bands of stretch spandex down each side.Despite having the battery in the large, padded back pocket, the vest at 1 pound 14 ounces, and battery at 13.6 ounces, won’t weigh you down. If you upgrade to the twin-battery array, the pocket holds both batteries, plus the power connection cord for the optional 12-volt hookup and all the heating elements.The Ewool Pro+ has more extensive coverage of the heating elements than the Pro model. The chest, back, and collar have coverage in both models, but the Pro+ model has back heat elements that extend deep down to the lumbar area. For me, the collar and lumbar area coverage are significant innovations because the neck and lower back can tend to get cold air infiltration.Out on the motorcycle or on my vintage Sno-Runner on a cold day, I have always worn a turtleneck base layer to prevent cold air from getting at my neck. The Pro+ had the ideal answer for both of those situations. In addition to being heated, the collar has a soft, fleece-style lining material making it even more comfy. With the heat delivered over a base layer with or without a turtleneck, it keeps my neck comfortable, even in cold, windy conditions.With the battery is installed in the vest, you press the control button, and four tiny LEDs light up to show that the battery is fully charged. Then, to start the vest, press and hold the control button for five seconds. In another five seconds, you will begin to feel the warmth!The three heat settings impact battery duration—the higher the setting, the shorter the charge life. The battery life is approximately 7 hours on low, 3.5 hours on normal, and 1.75 hours on the high setting with the single battery; times double with dual battery kit in use.With the optional 12-volt pigtail attachment ($23 MSRP), the vest can be powered up from your motorcycle electrical system. I have had heated gear dependent on being hooked up to the motorcycle and gotten off the bike, forgetting to disconnect before trying to walk away—oops. So, I opt for the Ewool battery so I can ride untethered. Of course, if you have an all-day ride in mind on a cold day, power from the motorcycle allows the vest to operate as long as needed.Should you get caught in a rainstorm, you don’t have to worry about electrocution. The heating system is IP67 rated—you can be three-feet underwater for 30 minutes without the system failing. It is also dustproof on dry rides.The Ewool Pro+ heated vest runs $478 MSRP, with a second battery adding $103 to the price. Men can choose from sizes S to 3XL, with women selecting from XS to 2XL.For those of us who live, work and ride in the land of four seasons, more than one of which can be pretty cold, the Ewool Pro+ heated vest is the kind of gear you can warm up to in a hurry.Ewool Pro+ Heated Vest Specs
Zero Electric ADV Bike + Al and Bridget from Throw Your Leg Over
byMotos and Friends by Ultimate Motorcycle
Hello everyone and welcome to Motos and Friends, a weekly Podcast brought to you by the editorial team at Ultimate Motorcycling. My name is Arthur Coldwells.
Electric mobility is everywhere nowadays. Whether it’s a car, a truck, an assisted bicycle, a scooter, or any number of new innovations, the electric revolution is certainly here. In this week’s first segment, Nic de Sena took a ride on Zero’s recently announced new Adventure bike—the Zero DSR-X. There’s been a lot of hype about this new arrival on the ADV scene, and of course the questions are many. Nic talks to me about whether Zero actually have a credible, alternative energy ADV bike—or if the machine is just simply an empty promise.
In our second segment, I chat with Al and Bridget from ‘Throw Your Leg Over’. They took time out to record this episode from somewhere in the middle of Romania, of all places.
These interesting Aussies have traveled—and painstakingly documented—the thousands of miles they’ve covered riding the best roads and sights through Australia, Tasmania, Europe, eastern Europe, and Scandinavia, among other places.