Motorcycle Helmet Performance: Blowing the Lid Off

Discussion in 'General Discussion / News / Information' started by daewoo, May 7, 2010.

  1. daewoo

    daewoo Ol'Timer

    I just read this very interesting article on helmet performance, and testing proceedures... the outcome seems to be that the author believes that the Snell focus on protection in the highest impact accidents put riders at far greater risk in the 90% real world lower impact hits... and the authors testing indicated that helmets at the cheapest end of the market (like Thai local market helmets) performed better in real world situations...

    http://www.motorcyclistonline.com/gearb ... index.html

    Thought some of you might be interested...

    Cheers,
    Daewoo
     
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  3. cdrw

    cdrw Ol'Timer

  4. Marco

    Marco Ol'Timer

    if i woud hve cheap helmet on my crash,,i would NOT be hare and commenting on this post, my nolan 102 helmet save my head, it took heave impact to the softest point in human head, direct hit to left ear, and if i woul wear those thai made egg shell or hemet what covers top of ones head,,well,,you would most likely writing something elso johns post than speedy recovery...

    i will do full analyze of what happen ones im cabable to do so...

    but guys,,dont save few dollars and get crap,,it's your and your family who is suffering with or with out you afterwards

    but that is my own opinion..
     
  5. daewoo

    daewoo Ol'Timer

    Marco,

    The basis of the article was that the higher standards - eg. Snell Standards, are set to save you in accidents at such high force that they never happen in the real world, but to make a helmet for those high impact crashes (300G), they are too solid for the lower impact accidents like the one you had (figures seem to show that the highest impact from the study in Europe was 175G)...

    The outcome was to buy a helmet that meets US or EC Standards, but not one that is made to meet the supposedly higher Snell Standard...

    I don't think any of the Thai Egg Shell helmets would pass US or EC standards, but pehaps some of the 1000 baht Index ones would... in the article the $US80 helmet stood up to their testing as good as anything else, and better than the Snell Standard helmets... The US military standard has a different spec for the area around the ear where you said your helmet took the force... to make it softer, not harder, to absorb more of the impact...

    I guess it is kinda like the 'crumple zone' on a car, that is supposed to abosrb the impact, rather than stop like a tank, and put all the force on the seatbelt across the passengers chest... although, in a real world crash, what you want is the other cars crumple zone doing most of the work...

    Glad you are getting better and that your helmet did it's job... Say hi to John for me, and tell him to stop harassing all the nurses :p

    Cheers,
    Daewoo
     
  6. Ducatillon

    Ducatillon Ol'Timer

    Although there are also some debates about the SHARP Scheme (visit http://sharp.direct.gov.uk/ for more information) it seems like SHARP tests helmets for real-life accidents.

    "The SHARP testing methods put an emphasis on side impacts, with the government claiming that 53% of impacts occur on the sides of the helmet. But the data shows that most impacts (64.8%) are on the front of the helmet; the sides are impacted only 23% of the time. Apparently, the 53% figure came from an error, adding the 26.9% damage to the right side and the 26.3% damage to the left side and then using the 53% figure for both sides." from http://www.webbikeworld.com/motorcycle- ... system.htm

    I have been using a Caberg Trip ("Rhyno as they call it in Asia) - A 5-star SHARP helmet- for the past two months and it is pretty comfortable. I spent around USD200 in Singapore and it was still much more affordable than Arai, Shoei, AGV. I hope I will never have to test it myself.

    You can see a list of results here:

    http://sharp.direct.gov.uk/search/resul ... =0&price=0

    Cheers
     
  7. feejer

    feejer Ol'Timer

    The study is logical from a physics perspective. No surprise that a more conformal shell will distribute energy more evenly and slowly through distortion of its own structure. But everything pales in importance compared to the most important aspect of a helmet. Proper fit. The best tested helmet in the world is not going to properly protect you if it doesn't fit right and it lets your head flop around or places localized pressure in one spot over another.

    I don't wear Arai because I like to spend extra money. Its because I have an Arai shaped head and its the only brand I have found that fits snugly, evenly, but also comfortably for hours on end. So at the end of the day, as long as you purchase a decent lid from a reputable manufacturer and it fits you right, you should be good to go. And certainly 1000% better off than the future organ donors that choose to tempt fate going bare.
     
  8. sinclair1969

    sinclair1969 Ol'Timer

    I wonder about the relative merits of open face versus motocross helmets. I wear glasses, and I find it uncomfortable to wear them with a fully closed helmet. The closed helmet covers all of the face of course, and will prevent accidents to the jaw in the case something struck that part of the face during a collision. I also believe that Thai Index helmets in the highest price range should be satisfactory. But since I joined this forum I became aware that one can get helmets for 18k and more here in Thailand, well that is half the price of a new small motorbike such as Honda Wave - very expensive. My question is, what would the advantages be of purchasing such a costly item - is it really that much better than the Index 1200 baht helmets? And what about Shoei helmets, I have seen them on sale in here in Bangkok, are they considered very good?
     
  9. daewoo

    daewoo Ol'Timer

    In My Humble Opinion...

    I use a motorcross style helmet when riding a motorcross style bike, and a full face helmet on a road bike...

    The MX style helmet allows good air-flow at speed, but having goggles on in traffic is very hot... unless your glasses have impact abosrbing lenses, you should only wear them under goggles or a visor... a rock will smash the lens, and you will have glass in your eye... also, I find that the wind catches under the peak of a MX helmet, and you need to either ride with your head tilting down, or try to hold your head against the wind... either way you get a very sore neck... the chin bar on the MX Helmet should work OK in an impact... much better than an open face if that is your next option...

    Maybe what you need are prescription sunglasses in a plastic frame... that might make them comfortable enough under a full face helmet...

    The big unknown about Index Helmets is that they are not tested to any international standard, so you can never know if they are as good as a $80 helmet in Australia... If you could know, I would be satisfied that they would be pretty safe...

    Importantly, you should only keep a helmet for 5 years because the foam inside starts to fail, even without being worn, and many of the Shoei -etc helmets on sale in Thailand are actually old stock, nearing or past their shelf life, so make sure you check the manufacturing date...

    Cheers,
    Daewoo
     
  10. sinclair1969

    sinclair1969 Ol'Timer

    Daewoo, thanks a lot for your nice and informative answer. I am glad I found this forum as it has a wealth of information.
     
  11. NN

    NN Member

    What about the Thai made Real brand? These are around 2K, I heard they were better than the Index.
     
  12. mbox999

    mbox999 Ol'Timer

    Hi NN,

    I have got my Real Helmet (FullFace) since a year and am very happy with it. It's a lot better than other Thai Branded helmets ( ie index, seacrown...) and it got DOT certification. My visor got a bit scratched up after a while and i ordered a new one via their website...the replies were all in thai but thanks to google translate it was easy to communicate. After a few days i had the new visor which lasted until now. Need to point out that some of those i know have as only issue that the real helmets seem to be rather smallish and to some Farang "big"head it may not fit or comfortable to wear....i am lucky that it fits me like it should . I may get myself the Real Ozzy open face helmet too now....

    Hope that helps,

    Mbox
     
  13. sinclair1969

    sinclair1969 Ol'Timer

    I just want to add to this discussion that Honda sells helmets in all their larger outlets in Thailand, and I have reason to believe that a genuine Honda helmet certainly meets safety standards as stated by that company. I would trust a Honda helmet anywhere.
     
  14. SilverhawkUSA

    SilverhawkUSA Ol'Timer

    In My Humble Opinion...

    I use a motorcross style helmet when riding a motorcross style bike, and a full face helmet on a road bike...

    The MX style helmet allows good air-flow at speed, but having goggles on in traffic is very hot... unless your glasses have impact abosrbing lenses, you should only wear them under goggles or a visor... a rock will smash the lens, and you will have glass in your eye... also, I find that the wind catches under the peak of a MX helmet, and you need to either ride with your head tilting down, or try to hold your head against the wind... either way you get a very sore neck... the chin bar on the MX Helmet should work OK in an impact... much better than an open face if that is your next option...

    Maybe what you need are prescription sunglasses in a plastic frame... that might make them comfortable enough under a full face helmet...

    The big unknown about Index Helmets is that they are not tested to any international standard, so you can never know if they are as good as a $80 helmet in Australia... If you could know, I would be satisfied that they would be pretty safe...

    Importantly, you should only keep a helmet for 5 years because the foam inside starts to fail, even without being worn, and many of the Shoei -etc helmets on sale in Thailand are actually old stock, nearing or past their shelf life, so make sure you check the manufacturing date...

    Cheers,
    Daewoo
    I wear a Shoei full face that I purchased in Singapore. Similar to "Feejer", I wear the Shoei because I liked the fit. Of course, it is also a very high end helmet. I would never "mail order" a helmet or have one purchased for me unless I could first try the fit. I also wear prescription glasses and have not had any kind of comfort problem. The only thing I dislike is the nuisance of having to take off my glasses each time I put on or remove the full face helmet. I have, on rare occasions, experienced a problem with my glasses fogging up under the helmet. Fortunately, my eyesight isn't that bad so I am able to ride without the glasses if necessary. I always order my prescription glasses with shatterproof lenses.

    Around town I wear a quality open face helmet. In the past I wore one all the time. I also like the feel of the openness and the fact that people can see your face. In remote areas and villages there is no better ground breaker than a visible smiling face. Sometimes I feel like an "alien" hiding behind my full face, but there is no arguing that it is a safer and quieter helmet.

    I also read the info on the testing standards a couple years ago when originally discussed here. There was also a documentary on TV showing these tests and stating the same opinions. I must say it makes sense to me. :geek1:
     
  15. sinclair1969

    sinclair1969 Ol'Timer

    I will be looking for a Shoei to use in city driving, and I prefer the open face type. The heat in Bangkok is often oppressive, and with an open face helmet you can more easily go about your business without taking the helmet off.
     
  16. daewoo

    daewoo Ol'Timer

  17. monsterman

    monsterman Ol'Timer

    Genuine HONDA helmets are made by HJC for Honda so they are good .
     

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