Bicycle Helmet – Resources for Learning How to Buy One

Bicycle Helmet

I have posted a number of articles about bicycle helmets.  Having taken a spill more than twice while riding, I have stated before and will repeat now, am a true believer in their utility.  You may not like how they feel, or how they fit, or their shape, or…(gasp) the fact that they may mess up your hair….but even after all that – they are truly useful.


Now, if your helmet does not feel good on your head, chances are you need a different, better fitting one.  Here are some key items to check out about your helmet and additional resources to use while selecting one:

  • Start with checking the box in the store.  Why?  It needs to clearly state that the helmet meets the requirements of the Consumer Products Safety Commision – the link here will bring you to the specific page with their guidance; Another valid certification is the Snell’s B-95
  • Size assessment – ask your local bike store or another sports or outdoors store with a good biking department for help on that.  They can measure you…The helmet needs to fit snugly or you have the danger of actually hurting yourself.
  • Personal preferences – here you can go wild; there are many bike helmet options…in terms of ventilation, shades, style and colors.  Up to you on this one.

The Bicycle Helmet Safety Institute has tons of additional information on the topic – check them out.   In the meantime, please remember – you need a bike helmet!

 

SmartHat Concept Helmet

It is the season for gift giving – with Christmas approaching – we all look for the special gift for the special people in our lives.   As all of you know the Web has become the proverbial shopping mall for many of us – we search through it, browse as we think of ideas for presents and in the process often come across the unexpected.

Late last week I came across the unexpected as well – the Smart-Hat – Helmet for the Responsible Cyclists.  The notion is being developed by a startup focused on adding tons of sensor and information gathering and displaying technology to the ordinary bicycle helmet.  Take a look – images courtesy of the Smart-Hat web site (http://www.smarthat.info/)

Smart-Hat  Smat-Hat-Detail

Here is the list of features offered in the Innovative (Too much innovation in my opinion):

  • multi layer helmet construction with impact absorbing features
    and facial protection from ground impact

  • in helmet bluetooth display with speaker, full satnav, speedometer, speed zones, temperature, heart rate, tilt sensor, ultrasonic object proximity warning, turn signal indicators, system icons, time

  • remote control turn indicators

  • automatic brake lights

  • automatic head light and night lights

  • a retractable visor system with rear view mirrors

  • a remote control, motorised wiper system for bad weather

  • integrated digital camera

  • smart phone storage

  • e-tag storage

  • batteries

  • bluetooth remote control switch mounted on bike handlebar

  • provision for an ID sign

  • customisable outer skin to any colour or graphics

  • provision for an in helmet cooling fan

  • superior comfort and safety in operation

At any rate, I hope we can get the current limited number of sensors integrated into a useful display on the bike – or on a smart phone securely attached to the bike – see my articles / postings about the phone-caddy.  That will be a good step forward.  This helmet (in my opinion) can wait…

Truly Believer in Bike Helmets Now

Well. folks, this morning went on a bike ride.  My wife and I did about an hour and a half both on the road and off-road through some single track country.  This all went well until we came back close to home.  I was riding pretty fast – wanted to make the climb up our drive-way as usually without dismounting from the bike.  But this is where my bike brakes failed me.  I braked – and the brakes locked up — apparently a 'feature' of the fluid operated disk brakes.  The fluid absorbs water from the air and cause corosion and in sme cases locking up of the brakes and of course the wheels

Needless to say I took a nasty tumble over the handebars of the bike and hit the pavement really hard.  At the end I was very glad that I had my bike helmet on — my head struck the pavement once as I rolled on the ground and then a second time 'thump' as I hit and came to rest….My bike was a few feet away from me and most amazingly – my iPhone was mounted on the bike in a Delta Smart Phone Caddy holder attached to the stem of my handlebars.  Well – the phone survived 

My helmet faired not so well — it will be replaced.  But it did its job – I was able to survive the hit with only minor scrapes on my hands and arms and only a brief headache…Having gone through this experience I also wanted to post here the link to an organization that further promotes bike safety and use of helmets – the organization is Helmets on Heads.

As the title of this blog entry states – I am a TRUE believer now – I will not ride without a helmet, EVER!