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sirthumpalot

High dollar helmets worth it?

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8 hours ago, bweighmaster said:

I have only bought Bell helmets ..have had All kinds, brands , but prefer Bell  over any.    I kinda like my head ..   

I remember when bell was a high dollar helmet. Then they were extremely cheap helmets. And now it seems like they are going back up in price.

I dont think a high dollar helmet protects you any better. At least to a point where it matters. A dot rating is a dot rating. I do notice that the more expensive helmets fit better and are lighter. 

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One good thing about Bell ,   Crash replacement program ...  Never had to use it , thankfully .  But it's there if you need it .  Right now own  3   MX 9 MIPS ,  mine , 13 yr. old and 7 yr. Grandson ..and still have my Bell Star bought in 1972 ,  retired from old age ... about to buy a new  SA 2015 for the 13 yr. old for stock car racing ....

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Regarding the ‘real world data’ info, what is considered an ‘official’ crash that will require the replacement of a helmet?

I ate doodoo on a trail with rented helmet and it really scared me... I thumped my head hard enough to have a sore spot on it (my dome) for a couple days after

of course I made sure I could feel/move all my extremities and wasn’t going to puke or pee my pants... took about 5 mins to get my wits, but I am/was fine afterward...

would that constitute replacing the helmet? There was no visible damage to the helmet other than a scuff

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1 minute ago, TexasBlues said:

Regarding the ‘real world data’ info, what is considered an ‘official’ crash that will require the replacement of a helmet?

I ate doodoo on a trail with rented helmet and it really scared me... I thumped my head hard enough to have a sore spot on it (my dome) for a couple days after

of course I made sure I could feel/move all my extremities and wasn’t going to puke or pee my pants... took about 5 mins to get my wits, but I am/was fine afterward...

would that constitute replacing the helmet? There was no visible damage to the helmet other than a scuff

Absolutely it does. 

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With all the technology, back in the day when zack bell debut the 6d helmet he knocked himself out cold during supercross.  I don’t buy into all the new tech but I do buy what I’m confortable paying for. 

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8 minutes ago, Bigfatredpig said:

Absolutely it does. 

Then helmet replacement is totally subjective based on personal ‘instinct’... not trying to split hairs, just curious... if it’s a hard enough whack ( in the riders opinion) then replacement should be considered

🤘🏼

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Just now, TexasBlues said:

Then helmet replacement is totally subjective based on personal ‘instinct’... not trying to split hairs, just curious... if it’s a hard enough whack ( in the riders opinion) then replacement should be considered

🤘🏼

Any blow strong enough for you to feel has compressed the Foam inside the Helmet enough to compromise it for the next crash. 

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Just now, TexasBlues said:

Then helmet replacement is totally subjective based on personal ‘instinct’... not trying to split hairs, just curious... if it’s a hard enough whack ( in the riders opinion) then replacement should be considered

🤘🏼

I hit the ground once and it rattles my head a bit, I throw the helmet away.  If I didn't hit my head hard enough to feel it, and there is no visible damage to the lid, then I will keep wearing it for one more crash.  Crash a second time with my head hitting the ground, it gets trash canned.  No if's, and's, or but's about it.

I keep 2 helmets in rotation.  A newer helmet to race in, an older helmet to trail ride in.  No helmet goes more than three years from when I purchased it, and no helmet ever goes more than 5 years from when being built.  When I buy a new helmet, that becomes the race lid, the race lid becomes the trail lid, and the trail lid gets the strap cut out of it.

I buy the best helmet I can that fits my melon the best.  I have tried them all on, and even though I currently stick with a certain brand, I still try others on when I can just to see if the fit with an updated model has improved from a past trial so that I could add it to my list of potential purchases.

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I suggest to those that care to find the show where Jimmy Lewis talks about this on his Dirt Bike Test "Tech Talk Taco Tuesday" Facebook live show (they are archived out there).  I can't remember what show number it was, or I would provide a direct link.

Jimmy is the one that spearheaded the independent testing that Dirt Rider did years ago on this subject, and he gets into the politics of the manufacturers and the testing involved (DOT vs. ECE vs. Snell).  He knows the results, and what was best, even if he isn't allowed to legally say it.  So look at what is on Jimmy's head when he is riding normally. 

In a short summation, Jimmy does say that the testing needs to be re-done with many of the new designs out there on the market, but no one wants to put up the money to independently do to the test, and no manufacturer is going to willingly participate (and you would not want them to for fear of being an "influencer" on the testing).  So besides paying for the testing, you have to come up with the large sum of money to buy all of the helmets yourself too.  If someone doesn't "win" the "shootout" there would probably be liability lawyers lining up left and right to start lawsuits against those that do not perform well.

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The easiest way to summarize helmet performance is with standards.  Standards are not perfect, but the tests are rigid and repeatable so it gives a reasonable baseline for judging performance.  The new standard that I mentioned earlier, ECE 22.06, should be much improved for dirt riders over the ancient DOT, Snell and ECE 22.05 standards.  Among other things, it includes rotational energy tests and more varied speed tests.  What good is a helmet to a dirt rider that absorbs hard impacts at highway speed, but passes lower speed impacts directly to the users head?  For reference, I once fell flat on my back from 12' up, landed on wood that was sitting on grass (much softer than bluegroove motocross track surface) knocked myself out cold for a while.  From 12' up, my speed would have been only 19mph when I hit the ground, apparently plenty fast to cause brain damage.  So energy absorption of lower speed impacts is definitely important to dirt riders.  So my point is, in lieu of any "shootout" type tests, standards are the best thing we have for evaluating performance, and the latest standard, while not perfect, should be an improvement over the older outdated standards.  

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you should check datra from traumatologists... There s a real and famous story about two brain traumato specialists who just crashed in each other at the corer of a corridor the hospital : both ended surgery, due to  big brain trauma and blood inside....  3 km/h walking each, when they hit their heads...  That said, common data from transport srudies sayis that any direct first frontal  hit upon  17km/h with an helmet will be fatal. I would more consider front shape. The more elongated , the more it will make twist your head and cervicals....

Edited by Hannibal Babar

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11 minutes ago, sirthumpalot said:

The easiest way to summarize helmet performance is with standards.  Standards are not perfect, but the tests are rigid and repeatable so it gives a reasonable baseline for judging performance.  The new standard that I mentioned earlier, ECE 22.06, should be much improved for dirt riders over the ancient DOT, Snell and ECE 22.05 standards.  Among other things, it includes rotational energy tests and more varied speed tests.  What good is a helmet to a dirt rider that absorbs hard impacts at highway speed, but passes lower speed impacts directly to the users head?  For reference, I once fell flat on my back from 12' up, landed on wood that was sitting on grass (much softer than bluegroove motocross track surface) knocked myself out cold for a while.  From 12' up, my speed would have been only 19mph when I hit the ground, apparently plenty fast to cause brain damage.  So energy absorption of lower speed impacts is definitely important to dirt riders.  So my point is, in lieu of any "shootout" type tests, standards are the best thing we have for evaluating performance, and the latest standard, while not perfect, should be an improvement over the older outdated standards.  

And herein lies the underlying problem: define "dirt riding" spec.

Is it going to be testing based on slower speed riding/impacts resulting in a lighter more flexible shell?  Is it going to be a smaller helmet that will put less rotational force into a twist (smaller radius, less force)?  Is it going to be a physically larger helmet to have more cushion or room for discs/rubber/gels/MIPS between the foam and shell?  Is it going to be better for high speed crashes requiring a more solid/stiff shell?  Is it going to be a smooth shell to slide more easily instead of twist?  What is the definition?  Because all of these things have contradicting optimization engineering to the others.

Seriously, where do you draw lines, and then with what you do with that certification knowing that it is NOT going to be as safe as a different cert for other users?

A helmet engineered to a standard that is safer for a guy in the woods going 20mph and dealing with a 10g impact into a tree isn't going to do me a lick of good when I swap at 90+mph in the desert and land in a pile of rocks taking a 50g impact on a rock.

THIS is the biggest problem.  There is no one standard that will work well for everyone, or every situation, or even most situations.  At best I think you may cover 60% of people with a specific cert.  The FIM was supposed to be rolling out their fancy new FRHP off road standard (in 2019) that all helmets/racers in MXGP/WEC were supposed to have to follow.  They had already done it for road racing.  Well guess what, it is now 2021 and all the FIM has done since that initial press release is...  Yup.  Nothing.  Nada.  Zip.  Zilch. 

Now, the best part about the FIM FRHP test is that it isn't just a certification for helmet model, it is a certification by SIZE.  If a model of a helmet has a different sized shell for a different size interior, guess what?  It has to be tested separately.  Currently, NO standard does this.  Not DOT, not Snell, not ECE.

If somebody wants the safest helmet they can get it is simple: find the helmet that BEST fits your head with the safety certs that best apply to how you ride (do your research!), and once you hit the ground, throw it away and get a new one.  To me, the biggest problem isn't that helmets people buy are inherently less safe than others, it is that people keep using helmets long after they can no longer supply adequate protection.  You hit the ground, the impact structure is compromisedThe helmet is aged, the impact structure is compromised.  Yet, 95% or more of the people out riding dirt bikes are using helmets that fit into either of those two categories.  THAT is the primary problem, IMO.  A new lightweight ECE helmet is still going to protect my head at higher speeds better than an old, hit the ground multiple times Snell 2010/15 certified lid.  And in the same vein, a new Snell 2020 lid is going to protect my head better in any circumstance than the ECE bucket that has hit the ground already.

Adding another layer of regulation, or improving the regulations, doesn't do anyone any good if they are using a helmet that no longer can pass the regulations it did when new due to unseen internal damage or breakdown from age.  Want to save the world?  Get people to buy a new helmet after they crash.  Every crash where the head hits the ground gets a new helmet.  Every idiot selling their old helmets at a garage sale or marketplace for someone else to use gets 50 lashes with a worn out 520 chain.

I have done a race where the actually did inspect your helmet.  Checked for specific certs and the age of the helmet.  And if you didn't have a helmet that passes, you didn't pass tech even if your bike did.  Had to pull the liner out and everything for inspection.  I liked that!

As far as the new ECE 22.06 standard, for the dirt world it isn't any improvement over the existing 22.05 standards.  All impact/rotational/visor testing/standards are the same between them.  Where ECE 22.06 goes farther is in face shields, inserts, and visibility (reflective strips, hi viz) for helmets.  Source: https://ultimatemotorcycling.com/2020/12/15/ece-22-06-motorcycle-helmet-performance-standards-set-for-2023/

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A motocross helmet is hard inside. It’s just an extension of your head then. Still gonna have concussions.  A motocross helmet just keeps u from getting a hole in your head.  
Funny how a football helmet is soft inside and cushions the impact and a motocross helmet is not.  A thin liner doesn’t count.  

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so ive always liked the saying that

You don't need to spend $1000 on an exhaust or suspension if your not willing to spend it on your brain.

 

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21 minutes ago, yz250f 78 said:

A motocross helmet is hard inside. It’s just an extension of your head then. Still gonna have concussions.  A motocross helmet just keeps u from getting a hole in your head.  
Funny how a football helmet is soft inside and cushions the impact and a motocross helmet is not.  A thin liner doesn’t count.  

You are comparing apples to watermelons.  Completely different kinds of impacts and force studies between the two.

As someone who has played the game extensively, studied the CTE ramifications, had a father-in-law deal (and die) with Parkinsons which was probably a result of CTE from years of playing, and in all likelihood has CTE myself in my brain from repeated micro-concussions from those non-stop football impacts, you are so far out of touch with this kind of comparison I just don't know what to say, at least that won't get me sent to time out or banned for a while.

If this is what you truly believe about motorcycle helmets, I just don't know what to tell you.  

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33 minutes ago, yz250f 78 said:

A motocross helmet is hard inside. It’s just an extension of your head then. Still gonna have concussions.  A motocross helmet just keeps u from getting a hole in your head.  
Funny how a football helmet is soft inside and cushions the impact and a motocross helmet is not.  A thin liner doesn’t count.  

different impact speeds between those two, the thin liner has a crushable foam or the like behind it and the reason you need to replace after a hit.

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47 minutes ago, yz250f 78 said:

A motocross helmet is hard inside. It’s just an extension of your head then. Still gonna have concussions.  A motocross helmet just keeps u from getting a hole in your head.  
Funny how a football helmet is soft inside and cushions the impact and a motocross helmet is not.  A thin liner doesn’t count.  

This is not true.

a football helmet interior crush zone (like in a car) is softer because impacts are happening at lower velocities rhan typical motorcycle impacts.

as such the amount of crush zone (the foam or cushions inside a helmet) are designed to disperse the impact energy over maximum time for the distance (thickness) the foam can crush.

much like a shock absorber, the interior liner needs to be damped for this rate.

slower speed = softer damping, higer speed = stiffer damping.

the foam inside your helmet works as it is supposed to. 
swat that motorcycle helmet foam with a 60mph impact with the weight of a head and you will see the foam crush as it is supposed to, but your thumb pressing on the foam will seem stiff by comparison to the football helmet.

as it should

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