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Sometimes a Bargain Isn’t a Bargain – Buy Right, Buy Once

How many times over the years have you bought yourself some ‘bargain’ motorcycle gear, trying to save a couple bucks – only to end up spending more money and buying something to replace it?

On the flip side, have you ever been let down by gear that cost a premium?

I really didn’t want to spend the loot to buy my Sidi Adventure GORE-TEX boots. But, now that I’ve had them for a couple months ~ I’m glad I did, they were worth it to me. Dry feet are a thing of beauty.

Sena SMH10 Bluetooth Headset

A few weeks ago, I received a set of Sena SMH10 Bluetooth Headsets and a a SM10 Dual Stream Bluetooth Stereo Transmitter to use and review. Preliminary long story short? I am LOVING using the headsets!

I have never used any type of helmet communicator before. Frankly, I wasn’t really sure if it was something that I really wanted. I was skeptical. As I thought about it, because the SMH10 does so much more than allowing me to talk to another motorcyclist riding along with me – I figured, what the hell? I’ll give it a try.

The headsets can pair to several devices at once – other Sena headsets for bike to bike communication, your GPS, your phone – it’s all pretty awesome.

Helmet Communicator – Party of One

More often than not, I find myself riding solo. What can one of these Sena devices do for someone like me? Well ~ I regularly use the SMH10 with my phone and GPS features:

  • Send text messages verbally
  • Listen to text messages I’ve received
  • Make and receive phone calls
  • Use my phone’s music library
  • Use Siri on my iPhone
  • Turn by turn directions
Now, I don’t really recommend riding and talking on the phone – but, it is possible.

Being able to bluetooth to my iPhone and GPS has been great. I put this combo to good use during the Void Rally. Having turn by turn directions pause the music and whisper sweet turn lefts in my ear was incredibly helpful.

It was also during the rally that I discovered that the lady who lives inside my GPS seems to have a little bit of an attitude problem when it comes to recalculating,… but that is a story for another day.

Initially I wasnt sure how well I would be able to hear through the helmet speakers because I ride with earplugs in. It was a pleasant surprise to find that I was able to hear my music and the GPS, even with the deafening buffeting coming off of my Tiger’s windscreen at highway speeds.

Now that I have the Ural, being able to freely talk with my sidecar monkey has been a big help. Actually hearing, “Mom, I need to pee” works much better than taking my eyes off the road to try to figure out what the gesturing beside me means.

Miscellaneous Notes:

Being that there is only a glove-friendly jog wheel and a single button, you don’t get get confused about what you’re supposed to press or turn. I find it to be totally intuitive to use even when you’re concentrating on you know, riding.

Battery life has been great. I’m not actually sure how long the battery lasts because I haven’t had it go flat from full charge on a single day’s ride.

I had no trouble with the device riding 500 miles in the pouring rain from Virginia to Long Island. It worked like a champ.

Pairing the headset to my Zumo 660, my iPhone, and another headset is straightforward –  a piece o’cake.

Verdict So Far?

I’m so happy with the SMH10. It’s is greatest thing I didn’t even know I wanted! Now I can’t imagine riding without it.

I will update this post with any other findings during our travels together.

Stay tuned for a post on the SM10 Transmitter.

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For More Information: Sena Bluetooth

Review Disclaimer: I did receive these products complimentary. This will in no way influence my opinion on the product. That would be crap.

Oakley Fast Jacket Sunglasses with Transition Lenses

There are quite a few helmets out now that have built in flip-down sunshades in them. My Shark Race-R helmet isn’t one of them. Since I prefer not to use a tinted visor, that means I often wear sunglasses in my helmet.

With its “Easy Fit ” space for glasses wearers, my helmet accommodates the arms of glasses without any pinching or pressing. That makes comfort a non-issue for me.

Visordown might think I’m committing crimes against motorcycle fashion but… who cares?

Instead, I am taking my fashionably-challenged-ness to a whole new level of hideousness. Yes, that’s right. I’m talking about Oakley sunglasses.

I’d long thought Oakleys were only meant for those steroid-laden robot men from the gym that can bench press my car. I suppose I was wrong. I lift things up and put them down.

I am now the proud owner of a pair of Oakley Fast Jacket glasses with Transitions photochromic lenses. They transition from nearly clear to tinted when exposed to UV light.

For me, it is much faster and more compact to change and store these glasses when compared to swapping different helmet visors. I can also use them for other outdoor activities. Win!

And they make me look like a cyborg, so there’s that.

The glasses do not darken while riding in a car. I specifically asked the salesperson if there would be any issue with the lenses not shading while wearing a helmet. He said that the should work fine assuming my visor doesn’t block UV rays. Makes sense. ::crosses fingers::

Are you a sunglasses or tinted visor wearer?

It was Christmas in July – I Finally Got New Motorcycle Boots

After lusting after them for about 6 months, I finally broke down and bought myself a new pair of motorcycle boots.  They are those Sidi Adventure GORE-TEX numbers I was yammering on about the other day.

I used my mathematical powers to decide that because they were recently discounted by $150, that I would be a fool not to buy them. That’s like 463% off of their original $650 retail price! I may have rounded that percentage a little funny but I think we’ve already established I’m not so good with math.

Too much for the office?
Too much for the office?

I may not know math, but I do know shoes. And these babies… foxy. In a Mad Max sort of way, which is the way I like it.

Aside from being waterproof sexy bitches, these boots also provide me with a little welcomed lift on the Tiger. Since I have to tippy-toe on the big girl bike, I’ll happily take any help I can get.

Crossfire, Adventure and Vertigo ~ I guess you could say that I’m a Sidi girl, huh?