I just moved to KL, Malaysia a couple weeks ago- my bike is in route. The first thing I noticed is the heat!! OMG- it's hot and humid. Coming from Northern California- the weather was quite shocking. So a couple questions for you all.
1. Where are some good bike shops in KL? I haven't located any- except for the main Ducati dealer.
2. What is some recommended gear for hot, humid and wet weather? I don't want to ride around in regular jeans and a T shirt- like I see some. No squid for me. At the same time, I don't want to have a stroke stuck in KL traffic ;)
3. Anyone interested in riding- PM, cause I would love to learn some of the local roads.
I was going to add, for anybody else living and riding in SOUTHEAST ASIA- what do you all use for gear? The weather is pretty much the same.
I used to ride in KL when I was living there about 10 years ago and I've been back regularly since.
Good call on the gear but you're a brave man for taking on the traffic. Be careful mate. Drivers there don't look out for bikes and certainly won't get out of your way if they see you. I used to wear full 1-piece leathers and came off once doing 160kmh on one of the highways. Was very lucky to not hit or be hit by another car!
To look for gear, be warned... the price of leathers in KL is much higher than anywhere else. This has something to do with the duty tax on leather goods. You're much better off going down to Singapore to get your leathers. But if leathers are too hot for you, then mesh is the way to go. Don't bother with the leather/textile combos as not enough air travels through. I prefer kevlar jeans with external knee pads instead of leather pants. That's pretty much my everyday gear here in Perth and we have temperatures in the high 30s.
IMO, the Ducati dealer in KL has no clue what they are talking about. They are not specialised in our beloved machines and are only interested in the sale. There's a Dainese shop near the dealer (in Taman Tun Dr Ismail) but their prices are higher than Singapore prices.
Helmets: be wary of cheap knockoffs! They look very real.
If you go down to Pertama Complex in the city, you will find quite a few bike shops with many vendors willing to bargain.
Hope that helps and stay safe. :)
Though I don't live in KL, I have ridden there a lot. All over Malaysia in fact. There are some great rides and roads there. I would say world class even.
In SE Asia I wear a leather jacket 90% of the time. I only wear a textile jacket for commuting to work. I usually wear an 3/4 helmet for commuting. Full face other times.
You will probably get used to the weather and humidity. I don't notice it any more really. It is normal for me now. Seems so dry when I go back to the US.
Buy your gear in Singapore when you can. It is much cheaper there. In fact SG helmet prices are about the best anywhere for name brands.
I find drivers in SE Asia on the whole more aware of bikes than say the US. That doesn't mean they are any more friendly. But they are more likely to be aware of your presence. Traffic is more chaotic as you already know I am sure you are aware.
Once you get acclimated to the weather and ways of the roads I think you will love riding there. Be safe. Have fun!
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I'm in Singapore so not that far away. What type of bike are you bringing over? There are some really good workshops in Singapore for looking after ducati's but I guess that's a bit of a long haul for a service :)
I have a RS Taichi mesh jacket with hard armor, as soon as you're moving it's like wearing a tshirt but you still notice to when your sat still. About the best you can do for the climate.
I have alpine stars light summer gloves, can't remember the model but they let a little air through while still having robust padding (recently tested and they stood up really well!)
I have Kevlar reinforced jeans for long runs and rides up to Malaysia but otherwise just wear normal jeans commuting and what not. Singapore traffic is a bit more tame then KL.
I find Singapore prices for helmets and gear to be expensive and limited in choice, and you do need to look out for knock off kit as mentioned earlier.
I buy my gear either from Australia or the states online as even with freight prices are much cheaper and the range of brands and products far larger.
This is a nice corner of Asia to live in, might bump into you at the motogp at Sepang later in the year :)
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