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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi All,

Over at the ST-Owners group, there is an annual "coldest ride" competition.
Here's a link to this year's Current Coldest Ride Thread.

Since I ride all year round and live in Minnesota, I'm usually close to the top of the coldest ride list. Since I've sold my ST-1300 and now own a 2016 FJR, I thought I'd see if there is any interest in doing the same type of coldest ride contest over here as well.

If interested, post up some cold ride entries here. If enough people are participating, I'll start a coldest ride contest next fall. Too late to start one for this winter. Since the days are now getting longer, I'm fully in my delusional spring-is-here mindset (which starts on December 22nd).

I'll follow up with a copy-past of my two entries from this year on ST-owners to get things rolling.

Later,
Kent Larson in Minnesota
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
I'm still allowed to work at home but today had:
  • In person meetings needed
  • Yamaha WR250R ready to pick up
  • Honda GROM ready to drop off
  • 24 hours post snowfall
  • Bright and sunny day

So, I rode...
- in to work on the GROM.
25 miles at -3⁰F (by stadium sign) or -2⁰F (by Weather Underground Station)
Tire Sky Wheel Vehicle Fuel tank


- back from work on the WR250.
25 miles at 3⁰F (by stadium sign)
Tire Wheel Sky Motorcycle Vehicle


Would have like the roads to be better cleared but sun warmed pavement and car tire tracts gave me enough grip both ways. Comfortable both ways with unheated Klim snowmobile gear. Ride back was a little better with heated grips on the WR250 and 6⁰F bump in temps. Ride in had me getting some finger ache that I handled by pulling the gloves off a bit (to get fingers into the warmer palms) and giving them a rub at stops. Took the surface streets both ways. Need a few more dry days after a snow before I'll risk the freeways.

Please put me down for -2⁰F.

Later,
Kent Larson in Minnesota

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I just got back from a 50 mile trip at 24⁰F.

That's not good enough to improve on my -2⁰F and not even cold enough to register on the top 10 but I thought I'd mention it because of the risk involved.

I ride all year but only when I think the risk is acceptable. The biggest factors for safety being clear roads and sunshine. It's been a few days since our last snow and roads were pretty clear but it is a cloudy day and I shouldn't have taken the risk.

My need was to get to a small tree job (I run a tree company part time to make me exercise and to get people to pay me while I exercise) and I decided to challenge myself and try riding there and back.

No mishaps, I got there, cleared a big limb off a fence, cut and stacked logs, and made it back home.

The high risk was due to wind and no sun. On a sunny day, even when it's below zero, the sun warms the roads well. Any small accumulation or snow blown onto the surface is melted quickly. Without the sun, roads stay cold, snow accumulates, hazards increase.

I was able to match car speeds (60 to 75mph) on the freeways when straight. Sweeping corners in the slow lane were fine as I could match speeds with the more nervous drivers by doing a bit of hang-off to keep the bike upright. Cloverleafs (had to do just two) were a challenge and slow but I timed things to be clear of following traffic.

No sliding in corners but I did surprise myself with a back-end lock-up when down shifting as the 70mph freeway ended and turned into a 40mph in-town road. Pulled in the clutch, got things back in shape, and remembered not to do that for the rest of the ride.

Sure missed the sun today. Nothing bad happened but risk was much higher than I'd normally allow.

Here's a picture of my winter ride packed up and ready for tree work.

Later,
Kent Larson in Minnesota
Wheel Land vehicle Vehicle Tire Snow
 

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Versys 1000, VFR800
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Kudos for getting out, but that ice and snow would keep me at home.... I haven't seen a cold ride contest on any other forum, us old ST guys must be a little different, eh!!
 

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Don't bring that ST coldest ride crap over here !! 😁 :devilish::cool:
 

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We've had almost no snow this January and I've been tempted to take the bike out for a ride. The only thing stopping me is the county has been making our roads white with road salt "just because".

Our local paper has ads paid for by the county telling homeowners to "reduce our salt use" because it's bad for the environment. WTF
 

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229 Posts
I’m up for a winter ride. Let me know what time you’ll be on the I60 and Higley in Mesa and I’ll be on waiting at the on ramp!
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Why are those saws green and not orange and white?
The good ones are just orange;)
Note to the site moderator: This post kind of reads like I'd get commission on Greenworks sales. It isn't. I have no affiliation with Greenworks. I'm just sharing experience with different chainsaws. Feel free to delete or move if needed.

I fully agree with @StreamRider. Used a couple 20 year old Stihl saws for the first 5 years in the tree felling business. Loved them. Always recommended Stihl if someone asked what to buy. I have no experience with Stihl saws made in the last 10 years.

I also agree with @Oldjeep. I picked up an old Husky someone neglected for cheap. After a new air filter and carb rebuild and it has been my reliable "big" saw (just a 20" bar) for many years. I still pull it out when I finish off a hard packed stump or cut up logs of 30+ inches in diameter.

I'm an urban tree worker not a forester and almost never have a need for a bigger saw than the Husky. If the tree can't be done with two guys, a truck and a 20" saw, I just pass on it and recommend my buddy Gus at Renstrom Tree Service: Renstrom Website

About 8 years ago I started experimenting with battery saws. Started with a Dwalt 60Volt. Do NOT buy this saw!
Tool Saw Power tool Font Auto part

Lots of good:
  • No gas/oil mix to run. Still needs bar oil.
  • Quiet!
  • Perfect for up in the tree. Pull the trigger and cut. No getting the motor going.
  • Battery lasts long enough for all the canopy work.
  • Same power for cutting as my smaller gas saws.
One serious bad:
- The chain drive system sucks. It takes almost no twisting force to snap the bolt holding the washers that keep the chain trapped on the drive sprocket. Once that's broken, you don't have a saw until it is fixed.

Now I use these cheap Greenworks 80V saws. Love them.
Green Tool Chainsaw Slope Plant


They truly are equivalent to a 42cc gas engine (as they say on their website) and cut for over an hour on a 2.0 Ah battery. My son and I can get through a pretty long day without ever firing up a gas saw. I've worked up to having 8 batteries by now. Batteries are about 1/2 price when buying them with a tool so now I have a pole saw, trimmer, blower, lawn mower and 2 chain saws.

I highly recommend these Greenworks saws. Get an email registered with them and watch for sales. About once a year they run a 25% to 30% discount sale and I pick up a spare saw, tool-only for about $170.

The only trouble I have with the Greenworks is when the tree gets too dense. I'll go up a 50 to 60 foot pine tree cutting branches off as I climb and then chunking off 18 inch logs as I come back down. By the time I'm about 10 feet off the ground, the cuts take more energy than the battery can provide and the saw beep-beep-beeps "I'm out" about halfway through the cut, even with a brand new battery. That's when I come down and pull out the Husky to finish up.

Later,
Kent Larson in Minnesota
 

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Since we are on chainsaws;). My complaints with Stihl has always been how finicky they are with fuel and how relatively floppy the suspension is compared to husky. It is ridiculous that a 2 stroke would have any issue with e10 - they should run on anything. Now this is really just based on the farm boss/ rancher class of saws. Spent a lot of time clearing off-road trails with borrowed saws and the husky 455 rancher is what I bought after trying a few.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
@Mooseman1. and @cra-z1 no rides to Arizona for me this year, probably.
But I did ride to AZ and back a few years ago with some days being over 1000 miles and under 32⁰F, so I think I have @cra-z1 beat. Well, not for this year.
(is CRA from the Central Roadracing Association?)

Here's the write-up I did on the Arizona trip over at ST-Owners: March Ride to Phoenix

Later,
Kent Larson in Minnesota
Former CRA #144, CCS #44
 

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2003 FJR1300R / 2007 Husq SMR 510
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Note to the site moderator: This post kind of reads like I'd get commission on Greenworks sales. It isn't. I have no affiliation with Greenworks. I'm just sharing experience with different chainsaws. Feel free to delete or move if needed.

I fully agree with @StreamRider. Used a couple 20 year old Stihl saws for the first 5 years in the tree felling business. Loved them. Always recommended Stihl if someone asked what to buy. I have no experience with Stihl saws made in the last 10 years.

I also agree with @Oldjeep. I picked up an old Husky someone neglected for cheap. After a new air filter and carb rebuild and it has been my reliable "big" saw (just a 20" bar) for many years. I still pull it out when I finish off a hard packed stump or cut up logs of 30+ inches in diameter.

I'm an urban tree worker not a forester and almost never have a need for a bigger saw than the Husky. If the tree can't be done with two guys, a truck and a 20" saw, I just pass on it and recommend my buddy Gus at Renstrom Tree Service: Renstrom Website

About 8 years ago I started experimenting with battery saws. Started with a Dwalt 60Volt. Do NOT buy this saw!
View attachment 90332
Lots of good:
  • No gas/oil mix to run. Still needs bar oil.
  • Quiet!
  • Perfect for up in the tree. Pull the trigger and cut. No getting the motor going.
  • Battery lasts long enough for all the canopy work.
  • Same power for cutting as my smaller gas saws.
One serious bad:
- The chain drive system sucks. It takes almost no twisting force to snap the bolt holding the washers that keep the chain trapped on the drive sprocket. Once that's broken, you don't have a saw until it is fixed.

Now I use these cheap Greenworks 80V saws. Love them.
View attachment 90333

They truly are equivalent to a 42cc gas engine (as they say on their website) and cut for over an hour on a 2.0 Ah battery. My son and I can get through a pretty long day without ever firing up a gas saw. I've worked up to having 8 batteries by now. Batteries are about 1/2 price when buying them with a tool so now I have a pole saw, trimmer, blower, lawn mower and 2 chain saws.

I highly recommend these Greenworks saws. Get an email registered with them and watch for sales. About once a year they run a 25% to 30% discount sale and I pick up a spare saw, tool-only for about $170.

The only trouble I have with the Greenworks is when the tree gets too dense. I'll go up a 50 to 60 foot pine tree cutting branches off as I climb and then chunking off 18 inch logs as I come back down. By the time I'm about 10 feet off the ground, the cuts take more energy than the battery can provide and the saw beep-beep-beeps "I'm out" about halfway through the cut, even with a brand new battery. That's when I come down and pull out the Husky to finish up.

Later,
Kent Larson in Minnesota




Plant Leaf Botany Wood Trunk

Better bring every battery you got.
(That's a Stihl 044 Magnum with a 5' skip. The biggest modern saw you can hold in 2 hands)
 

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Back on topic though... I really wish I hadn't put my bike up this year when I had. I have missed so many 45 degree days because my bike is in pieces. I would love to do a cold-ride next year but it really only get's around 0 - -5 where I am at in NY. Maybe I will plan a ride up to the Canadian boarder to try to catch a low score. The wind chill up by Lake Champlain and the fields of Rouses Point can get damn near bitter.
 
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