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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.








General Use & Care

  1. 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.
  2. To maintain the full efficiency of your helmet, there must be no alterations to the structure of the helmet or it's components.
  3. 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.

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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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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 dry.gif ).

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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.





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! ohmy.giftongue.gif

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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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