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#21 mugget

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Posted 21 April 2012 - 06:26 AM

Great idea for another sub-forum!

On the subject of helmets: another good tip is to not rest your helmet on top of the fuel cap/tank. Reason being that fuel vapours will likely rise and can eat out the foam insides. Maybe not an issue for short periods, but if my bike was in storage or sitting for weeks at a time I would not leave the helmet on the tank...

The local track day organiser here in Brisbane will actually cut the helmet straps off if a rider had an obviously big impact and is going to hospital etc. Which I think is a good idea. It's not worth the risk of someone else (or even the same rider) trying to use the helmet again. That would be like riding in a set of leathers that have a hole worn in backside... Helmets are just another wear item, and it's good to keep that in mind when deciding how much to pay for one. (Just talking about obvious big impacts here... for example if the rider is K.O'd, no way they would go around cutting everyone's helmet straps after a small spill. Posted Image )

I know that alot of people say "how much is your head worth? Cheap helmet = cheap brain." or something to that effect. My very first helmet was a Shoei X1000, definitely not cheap... but then when you have to buy another the choice could be an entirely economic one. Or if you're a frequent crasher you may think twice about spending $1,000 on another helmet a month after you just bought one... Personally I am comfortable with cheaper brands like KBC. They still have the appropriate certification, they are well within my budget so I'm happy on all fronts. I'd rather ride those 3 or 4 track days instead of having to skip them to afford an expensive helmet.

I think it's safe to say that the main difference with more expensive helmets will be comfort and features. I've noticed that cheaper helmets are more noisy (they let more wind in), are bulkier (a consideration if you ride in traffic alot and your helmet touches your shoulder each time you try to look around), the fittings on the vents & buckles etc. are usually a bit more tedious (my KBC is very difficult to remove the visor, whereas Shoei are very easy, Shoei also has super-easy buckles but KBC is a bit more fiddly).

But in the end it may just come down to fit. Some people will only fit a certain brand because of their head shape, some people just have very large or small heads that are only accommodated for among more expensive brands. So in the case of fit, cheaper or expensive is irrelevant - you've just got to buy whatever fits your head.

#22 ScrmnDuc

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 12:25 AM

Cobie, great idea on the helmet sub forum. It's been 4 years since I went head first, so to speak, into helmets. That's when I got back riding after a 4 to 5 years of caging. While using an old Shoei that was out of date I researched like mad to help my decision on what to buy. Now after reading this topic on helmets it has me thinking and looking again. I will post links etc.. as I stumble across information again.

Quick read on DOT regs: http://www.nhtsa.gov...pages/page2.htm
The DOT regs with pictures: http://www.fmcsa.dot...spx?reg=571.218
Easier to read version posted at webBikeWorld and it goes further with links and explanations of a few testing and rating methods: http://www.webbikewo...OT-standard.htm

Snell website http://www.smf.org/home
Helmet standards http://www.smf.org/stds It covers all the areas that they are involved in and goes back quite a few years.

I read this an hour or so ago. http://www.smf.org/stdsDiff
This quote I have a problem with. It is taken from the standards difference.
"The other problem is, how much helmet you will wear. A good motorcycle helmet will generally provide more protection than just about any other helmet, but they are heavier and do not provide as much venting. This is OK for riding a motorcycle because you are not exerting as much physical energy as you would be on a non-motorized vehicle."
I take that as an excuse to purposely design the standards for motorcycle helmets to a level that is not representative to the real world of motorcycling.
Don't rant, Don't rant......... That makes me think of what I have to deal with every day with my job (industrial construction and maintenance).

more to follow.
Jeff

2 strokes scream and Duc's will too when the proper amount of pressure is applied to the right place at the right time.
Is it more fun to ride a slow bike fast or a fast bike slow?

#23 mugget

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 06:32 AM

That part about motorcycle helmets not proving much venting... I think they're just saying that if you're cycling you don't require as much protection from a helmet (it takes much less to protect from a 20km/h impact compared to a 200km/h impact), and so you can have more ventilation. I think for Average Joe, the helmet standards & ventilation do a good job in the real world. For example, cruising down the highway you're not going to heat up so much that you wish for a really ventilated helmet (or there are open face helmets if you really do want ventilation).

The extreme case is sports/track riding where you are exerting quite a lot of energy, especially in summer. But I would wish for better ventilated leathers sooner than a helmet. Not that it would make much difference when you're crouched down over a machine that is doing it's best to pump out massive amounts of heat.

#24 ScrmnDuc

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 04:28 PM

I handle and treat my helmets like an egg. Or as a British phrase used during WW2 when handling explosives "Fragile like Eggs"
Remember, you can drop an egg and it not bust. It is cracked and not as strong as it was before it was dropped.
How many times can this happen before it lets the guts out?


This is from HJC
http://www.hjchelmets.com/
helmet technology / helmet usage
helmet technology / helmet care

Short version:
From usage:
It has suffered an impact. Your helmet is only designed for ONE impact. An impact may fracture the outer shell or compress the impact absorbing liner. You may not be able to detect this damage. Any impact in a crash or a drop from as low as 4 feet is enough to damage your helmet.

Never drop your helmet Dropping your helmet may crack the shell or damage the protective foam. The damage may not be visible. Your helmet is only designed for ONE impact. Refer to "Helmet Replacement for more information on what to do after helmet has been dropped.

From care:
Do Not Modify Your Helmet
painting;


That is custom paint jobs folks!!!!!
Why?
Simple.
Unless you use the same paint and process as the manufacture you could damage the integrity of the shell.
2 strokes scream and Duc's will too when the proper amount of pressure is applied to the right place at the right time.
Is it more fun to ride a slow bike fast or a fast bike slow?

#25 ScrmnDuc

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 04:38 PM

Shoei
http://www.shoei-hel...ndlingCare.aspx

WHEN SHOULD A HELMET BE REPLACED? Posted Image The life of a helmet depends on how it is used. A helmet should be replaced if one or more of the following points apply:

1. There was a fall that resulted in an impact on the helmet. <This is open for interpretation. Is that a fall off the bike or a fall - aka crash?>

2. The helmet fits looser than when it was purchased due to frequent use.

3. The EPS liner has come away from the helmet shell.

4. The EPS liner shows signs of wear and is beginning to break up, or if it has been exposed to heat or a solvent and has melted.

SERVICE: SHOEI helmets are covered by a five-year, limited warranty, and SHOEI will repair or replace the helmet if it is found to suffer from flaws in materials or workmanship.

Shoei offers a free impact and safety inspection service for any SHOEI helmet.*

To have your helmet inspected, please send it to:
Shoei Helmets
3002 Dow Ave, Suite 128
Tustin, CA 92780
Attn: Inspections

Be sure to include a letter with a brief description of the issue with the helmet, as well as a daytime phone number and return address. Once we receive the helmet, it will take 1-3 business days to complete the inspection. Upon completion, the helmet is returned to you with a letter stating the findings of our inspection. Your helmet is returned to you whether it passes the inspection or not. There is no charge for the inspection, and the UPS Ground return shipping is free.

You can also see our video explaining how to ship your SHOEI helmet for impact inspeciton service.

*For residents of US and Canada only.
2 strokes scream and Duc's will too when the proper amount of pressure is applied to the right place at the right time.
Is it more fun to ride a slow bike fast or a fast bike slow?

#26 ScrmnDuc

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 04:44 PM

KBC
http://www.kbchelmet.com/?page_id=133


Helmets After Impact
Although your helmet is solidly constructed, it should be handled with care and should be replaced in the event of either dropping the helmet onto a hard surface or rough handling. Such abuse may damage the painted surface finish or decrease its ability to protect.

IMPACT: Do not wear the helmet after an impact for any reason, even if there is no visible damage showing on the helmet, damage may have been caused to the internal structure of the helmet and it's ability to absorb further energy may have been compromised. REPLACE IMMEDIATELY.

The internal layers of EPS are critical to the energy absorption performance of the helmet and any damage which could compress this material will reduce the ability to absorb the impact energy and thus transmit more energy to the rider's head and critical organs.




http://www.kbchelmet.com/?page_id=544


General Use & Care
  • Your KBC helmet is made to absorb some of the energy of an impact or blow by partial destruction of its component parts (e.g.- external shell and inner liner) and even though damage may not be apparent, the helmet should be replaced after any impact whatsoever.
  • To maintain the full efficiency of your helmet, there must be no alterations to the structure of the helmet or it's components.
  • Full-face helmets are designed for use with a visor, and are not suitable with any type of goggles. Use goggles only with off road (Motocross) type helmets.

2 strokes scream and Duc's will too when the proper amount of pressure is applied to the right place at the right time.
Is it more fun to ride a slow bike fast or a fast bike slow?

#27 Hotfoot

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 05:47 PM

That part about motorcycle helmets not proving much venting... I think they're just saying that if you're cycling you don't require as much protection from a helmet (it takes much less to protect from a 20km/h impact compared to a 200km/h impact), and so you can have more ventilation. I think for Average Joe, the helmet standards & ventilation do a good job in the real world. For example, cruising down the highway you're not going to heat up so much that you wish for a really ventilated helmet (or there are open face helmets if you really do want ventilation).

The extreme case is sports/track riding where you are exerting quite a lot of energy, especially in summer. But I would wish for better ventilated leathers sooner than a helmet. Not that it would make much difference when you're crouched down over a machine that is doing it's best to pump out massive amounts of heat.


A lot of ventilation in the helmet can mean a lot of noise. I had a Shoei with lots of vents and it was super noisy even with earplugs. My current KBC has less ventilation and is so much quieter I can hardly believe it. I don't notice any significant difference in how hot I feel. I agree that well ventilated leathers seem to be more important.
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#28 mugget

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Posted 14 July 2012 - 11:35 PM

Do Not Modify Your Helmet
• painting;


Good point there - anyone who is thinking of having a play around with some custom airbrusing/paint should keep in mind that water based paint is really the only option (AFAIK). Other paints use petrochemicals to thin the paint, and those chemicals will soften the shell. But if you contact a specialist paint supplier they will know exactly what paints are safe to use.


Good point about the wind noise Hotfoot. That can drive a person mad... I have read good reviews about Schuberth, apparently they have great ventilation and they're also quiet. Even their "touring" helmet seems to be quite suitable for track use (as far as low noise & aerodynamics go). Unfortunately I don't think they're available in Australia yet because we have to have our very own safety standard (the rest of the world mustn't be safe enough for us Posted Image ).

#29 ScrmnDuc

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 12:22 AM

post up the Australian regs mugget :D
2 strokes scream and Duc's will too when the proper amount of pressure is applied to the right place at the right time.
Is it more fun to ride a slow bike fast or a fast bike slow?

#30 mugget

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Posted 16 July 2012 - 04:35 AM

Ah, okay. So to put it simply - helmet laws in Australia basically come down to the fact that unless your helmet carries the Aus Standards sticker (shown below), it is illegal.

There are a number of companies that can certify a motorcycle helmet, most commonly the SAI Global type label will be seen.

Posted Image


Note that even if an identical helmet is sold overseas and certified to Snell/DOT/ECE etc., it will still be illegal to use on Australian roads unless it carries an approved Aus Standards sticker. It does not matter if the helmet once carried the sticker and it was removed for some reason, if the sticker is not on the helmet, you can be fined for it. Aside from that there is also the risky situation of third party damages caused by a rider who is not wearing an approved helmet (their insurance will not cover them). As far as the law is concerned, if your helmet does not carry one of those little stickers, you are not wearing a helmet!

Thankfully I have not heard of police checking for the sticker on riders helmets, some people in Australia have elected to buy helmets from overseas and still use them on the roads. But this puts them in the tricky situation of what happens if they have an accident involving other parties... (some people feel quite strongly about the Aus Standard situation and if challenged will go to court to prove that their helmet does meet the standards). Track day organisations will also check for the Aus Standards sticker at scruitineering, no doubt because of the insurance concern.

Some people who have spent much more time researching this than myself will say that a helmet which is identical to one that is Aus Standards compliant is technically approved. But that is a big grey area IMO and would probably involve quite a discussion with the highway patrol if they pulled you up for it. Regardless of any technicalities, Department of Transport and other Government sources all state that a helmet carrying the AS 1698 sticker is required.

I had a quick search online and the prices seem to be fairly well matched whether a person is looking to buy within Australia or overseas. The price difference is the main reason that people will look to overseas retailers. About 4-5 years ago I can remember some helmets being almost half price through overseas retailers!

Much of the information available focuses on the fact that helmets must comply with AS 1698, but I have never actually seen any info about the testing procedures used! I think it's safe to say that any helmet that passes the American/European safety tests will also pass the Australian Standards test. So it's not actually that Australia has any tougher safety standards, more that someone just wanted to play around with some politicking. I don't think anyone really knows why we can't just use helmets from other countries (that is aside from the politics involved with the Australian Standard). All it means is that anyone in Australia has a much smaller choice of helmets compared to the rest of the world.

At least that is my take on it, don't take this as legal advice if you decide to come to Australia and go for a ride! Posted Image Posted Image

#31 mugget

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Posted 05 August 2012 - 11:23 AM

Tonight I just learnt another interesting fact about the "certified stickers" used in Australia. Maybe other parts of the world use something similar...

The interesting thing is that the print used on the sticker (at least on the SAI Global type, and especially the red colour) will actually fade with UV exposure (sunlight). I'm not sure if this is an intended design feature or just a natural byproduct - but it's a good measure of how old & "used" a helmet really is. If the sticker is faded, you probably should retire the helmet if you're wanting to do things by the book...

This makes sense because my Dad and I both bought Shoei XR1000's at the same time. However I used mine quite a bit (5-6 days a week for the first 3 or so years that I had it), Dad did not ride quite so much. Especially the last few years he hasn't ridden at all, so the helmet has been in a cupboard. In the meantime I have decided to retire my XR1000 because the padding had started to disintegrate. I pulled out Dad's XR1000 from the cupboard and have worn it a couple of times - the foam is in good condition and it fits properly! Gradually the padding in mine had compressed so it was fitting looser, didn't notice it because it happened gradually - but it was actually quite loose!




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