Forums: Skydiving: Gear and Rigging:
Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving?

 


hagenschumacher  (A License)

Jun 29, 2013, 3:52 AM
Post #1 of 13 (3127 views)
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Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? Can't Post

I was thinking about buying a motorbike open face helmet and goggles and use them for skydiving in the UK. The motorbike equipment seems cheaper and comes in a greater variety.

I am not planning to fix a camera or to use an audible.

Does anybody have any experience / safety issues / tips with this?


strife  (D 5457)

Jun 29, 2013, 4:26 AM
Post #2 of 13 (3080 views)
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Re: [hagenschumacher] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

I would seriously check out the weight difference, and protecs arent that expensive, if thats what you are looking for?


BIGUN  (D 23385)

Jun 29, 2013, 6:10 AM
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Re: [hagenschumacher] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

As one who started skydiving during the era of motorcycle helmets and an avid Harley rider... I have been very intrigued with the era of change from the Bell helmet days to the much lighter skydiving-specific helmets to the now new lightweight motorcycle helmets.

I have owned several skydiving helmets and motorcycle helmets in recent years and with the new motorcycle helmets becoming so light and so many variations have asked myself why one sport helmet could not be used for both sports. My full face AFX bike helmet does not weigh much more than my full face skydiving helmet. And, with a price variance of the motorcycle helmets being $200-300 cheaper makes one consider, "Why not?"

That said, I really don't see why the new motorcycle helmets can't be used for skydiving (barring some that have sharp edges). I will tell you that I'm more impressed with the ECE certified helmets than I am the DOT certified. ECE certified being the requirement for over 50 countries. Some will tell you that if ECE Certified, therefore DOT certified and vice versa; but that is not always true.

As well as different testing methodologies. ECE has one important quality control aspect that DOT does not. DOT is a standard by which a helmet can be made and the manufacturer does QC random samplings and the manufacturer certifies the helmets themselves. ECE helmets require an external QC audit of each lot.

Having used to own a DZ and had someone showed up with a new age motorcycle helmet that was a light ECE certified helmet can't say that it would have had an effect on my allowing them to jump.

Take a look at some of the helmets here: http://www.jafrum.com/Motorcycle-Helmets

Take a pic and the specs and talk to those senior jumpers/DZO/S&TA at your DZ.

NOTE: My opinion is not necessarily the same as others and may not be the same as your DZO's. So in the end; they have the final say. I would venture to say that we are on the verge of an era of multi-purpose crossover helmets (motorcycle to biking to skiing to skydiving...) On a final note, If your DZO signs off; make sure that you get a helmet that fits properly. No slop in the helmet.


hagenschumacher  (A License)

Jun 29, 2013, 7:42 AM
Post #4 of 13 (2908 views)
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Re: [strife] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks, good tip. Haven't considered Protecs yet, but you are right, they seem good value for money.


hagenschumacher  (A License)

Jun 29, 2013, 8:00 AM
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Re: [BIGUN] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks for the detailed advice. That's very useful. So in effect the main issues seem to be weight / sharp edges if at all. I will check that out with my CCI. The helmets on your website look great.


riggerrob  (D 14840)

Jun 29, 2013, 3:14 PM
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Re: [BIGUN] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

Those Bell retro helmets look a lot like the ones I used to skydive in back around 1980.
I jumped a leather hat for a few years, but a "full-PLF" put me back in Pro-Tecs for another decade. The only disadvantage of the Pro-Tec was that it sometimes dis-connected the RSL on Strong tandems.
After suffering a concusion - during a plane crash - I retired my Pro-Tec and bought a Sky Systems HR2.
But next time I need a new helmet, I will prowl motor scooter shops for retro motorcycle helmets.


councilman24  (D 8631)

Jun 29, 2013, 6:30 PM
Post #7 of 13 (2690 views)
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Re: [hagenschumacher] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

Because they actually offer some protection, motorcycle helmets are usually thicker than skydiving helmets. This means your field of view is usually more restricted and you may not be able to full flex you neck all the way back. Weight also would be an issue for neck injuries during opening shock.

Even skydiving helmets have to me been too restrictive in field of view. I've been looking for one that I like for years. I do seem to like the Square one Phantom but too cheap to spend that much.

I started with a motorcycle helmet when that's what all students wore. It kept me from getting my head all the way back easily and caused some stability issues. I moved to a Protec, than a frap hat, and now back to usually jumping a protec. Cheap and in most cases more protection than the carbon fiber hair retainers sold now. I expect that you WILL want an audible but they can go in most anything, including protecs.

Goggles the same thing. Motorcycle gear is made for a two dimensional sport and forward movement in lanes. Skydiving is three dimensional and involves more complex movements with more field of view required. Other than an open face helmet most motor cycle gear won't allow you the vision necessary. Same with skiing helmets and other stuff.


strife  (D 5457)

Jul 1, 2013, 5:29 AM
Post #8 of 13 (2315 views)
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Re: [councilman24] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

councilman24 wrote:
carbon fiber hair retainers

definite internet points to you sir


costanza  (B 38742)

Jul 1, 2013, 6:58 AM
Post #9 of 13 (2247 views)
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Re: [strife] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

Though I don't ride a motorcycle, one of the biggest issues I could see would be visibility. I had a bonehead Havok I used for the tunnel, awesome in there btw, but after 1 jump, I noticed I couldn't see anything above me and made free fall terrifying.

One thing you could do is if there is a showroom for the motorcycling helmets, go and try some on, and lay on the floor and pretend you're in free fall. Sure you'll look like a weirdo to the folks there, but that might show you some of the pros/cons to using one of those helmets.

Also, the sharp edges comments make sense, but also think, could my suspension lines get wrapped around something? If so, could I get this helmet off quickly?


woppyvac  (D 33147)

Jul 2, 2013, 7:53 AM
Post #10 of 13 (2006 views)
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Re: [hagenschumacher] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

I use motorcycle goggles for my open face camera helmet. Super comfortable and affordable. Dunno about a light/cheap motorcycle helmet though...


hagenschumacher  (A License)

Jul 8, 2013, 2:43 PM
Post #11 of 13 (1695 views)
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Re: [councilman24] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks, didn't think about that but it makes sense.


hagenschumacher  (A License)

Jul 8, 2013, 2:45 PM
Post #12 of 13 (1692 views)
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Re: [woppyvac] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

Thanks, good to hear. I couldn't think of any significant reason why motorbike goggles should be a problem.


ChrisD  (No License)

Jul 8, 2013, 3:41 PM
Post #13 of 13 (1641 views)
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Re: [hagenschumacher] Motorbike helmet and goggles for skydiving? [In reply to] Can't Post

Another view, do a search, Smile, is the intended protecting the helmet is expected to do...


By this I mean in skydiving:

You want protection from your buds feet in RW flying as an example.

You want protection from the links and or risers hitting the side of your head.

So in some respects you really want a bump and light helmet for some protection.

Another view is that your heavy bike helmet could kill me if you are involved in a collision...
(rather a one sided view, eh?)

So if you hit the ground at terminal any helmet isn't going to do you any good, is it? So many have the point why have an DOT strength helmet, which isn't going to be of any use?

On the other hand your potential to hit a solid object is very high on a bike. Especially with your unprotected head. I've yet to see many roads without: trees, signs, fire hydrants, other bikes, curbs, etc,. etc,.. In which case having a helmet that can absorb impact forces can save your ass. Same argument sideways for skydiving if you were to land in trees, but considering no one lands in trees, no one thinks they need an energy absorbing helmet. Crazy

Most bike helmets limit your range of motion and esp your ability to look upward in freefall, they almost universally hit the back of your container. Back in the day people didn't know any better, and the motorcycle helmet was all they had...so they gave them to "students." And for themselves they started using "frap" hats.

All about the intended usage, so having something that will protect you with inadvertiant contact with a solid object on the ground is a good thing, in jumping any contact with solid objects is really really bad...

On a side note:

2 serious injuries skydiving in 2012 are still pointing that they were made much worse because equipment came into contact with the respective users helmets. And then the helmet did the damage...

Will bike helmets help or hinder in these cases?

Perhaps some bike helmets can be used skydiving, but I have yet to see any argument or save from using one???

Goggles different story, many excellent gomer goggles on the market, and I do wish they had some sort of impact rating as they do for eyeglasses. This is something that is often overlooked in eye protection and for most skydivers this post is most likely the first they have heard of this issue! We should demand more from our suppliers.

A bug, any bug can take out your eyes...riding or jumping!
C

I would try before you buy, perhaps there are a number of bike helmets that are suitable out there, but freefall is the wrong place to find out! Same goes for some helmets that are supposedly jump friendly. Smile



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