Sunday, January 8, 2012

Hot choice

After quite a bit of research and sober deliberation I have come to a couple of decisions.

The first decision is to stay with my LX150 for a third season, resisting the temptation to upgrade to a Vespa GTS.

With that decision behind me, installing heated grips on my LX150 became an obvious next choice.

I considered two alternatives: either Oxford heated grips or Hot Grips™ heated grips.

The Oxford heated grips are from a UK-based supplier and they are manufactured in Asia. They come standard with a variable electronic controller that includes automatic shutoff if the scooter battery drains down to 11 volts or so. The electronic controller also has the advantage of managing the load on the battery since at lower settings, the controller actually reduces the amps consumed to heat the grips.

The Hot Grips™ model on the other hand is manufactured in the USA. They come standard with a three position high-low-off switch that doesn't manage the electricity budget as well as an electronic controller. An American made electronic controller is however available as an added cost option.

I read reports of reliability issues with the Oxford controller, and mounting that controller on the Vespa, due to the controller's bulky exo-skeleton type housing, while it would work well on the typical motorcycle, wouldn't be very elegant on a Vespa, unless I mounted it in the glove box. Mounting it there would make adjusting the heat a challenge, even at stop lights.

The Hot Grips™ optional Warm & Safe Heat-Troller® electronic control on the other hand lends itself to mounting on the Vespa's dashboard quite elegantly where the controller will be easy to adjust even during a ride.

The final element weighing in the decision is that there won't be any import duty issues with the American made Hot Grips™ product as a result of the North American Free Trade Zone.

So that's it! It's Hot Grips™ for David's Vespa! I placed the order with Lockitt.com, a motorcycle accessories distributor recommended by the manufacturer. Hot Grips™ doesn't ship directly to Canada since it's a 50 minute return trip to the post office from the plant in Plainfield New Hampshire.

I should add that when I ran into some issues when I attempted to place the order on Hot Grips™ website, and e-mailed the manufacturer, on Saturday evening, I got responses to my questions and the recommendation to order from Lockitt.com from Jim Hollander at Hot Grips™ at 10:00 p.m. Now that's service!

Now all I have to do is wait for the package in the mail.

Don't you love waiting for stuff that's coming in the mail?   I do. There's that element of anticipation that just brings out my inner child.

I can understand how some people become addicted to online shopping.

5 comments:

  1. I definitely see the purpose of heated grips in your neck of the woods. At the We(s)t Coast it doesn't get that cold. I am still riding with my summer gloves plus silk liners.
    I am curious though how they will work out, and what effect they might have on the battery life time.

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  2. Ohhhh heated grips, would love some of those babies! I love getting stuff in the mail, because all I usually get are bills. Here's to nice toasty hands.

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  3. Hot Grips are what I have and I'm loving them. I've had no problems with the charging system and it does make riding in the cold much more enjoyable.

    I don't think you'll be sorry with your decision. I'm eager to hear how it works out.
    ~k

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  4. Congrats on ordering the hot grips. Once installed you will wonder how you rode without them. It is easy to get spoiled with heated grips.

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  5. David:

    I have the Oxfords. They came with my bike already installed. I don't use them much around town as I think there is not enough electrical capacity under 3K RPMs. I have used them more on a summer's evening to take away the chill of a hot day.

    There was a problem with the early controllers, mine was replaced under warranty, no problems since

    enjoy the heat . . .

    bob
    Riding the Wet Coast

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