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PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2006 21:04 
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:wink: Am hoping this will get the lurks to join in the debate :wink:

Oooh! Tis a hot potato.... passions run high and amok on it... :wink:

:shock:

It's akin to the pro/anti- scam argument and fists and fur flies

OK - part of the thread inspired by the HC and the "should" inclusion which some are leaping and dancing - lycra twisting ... as this means "

Quote:
"Them nowty drivers who 'it us .... their insurance companies'll try it on....!" :roll:




(Well - yeah - they do ... they do it when you drive the darned thing as well.. they'll even claim the absurd .. I know ...from experience with my wife's incident. Took us a good six years to prove the was still insured when he tragically died at the wheel of his car - nearly taking my wife with him.. so yes.. am all too aware that these people are the most callous b:censored: rs in the world... )


Anyway - HC drafts aside...


March 2006 BMJ's bulging with arguments from both sides of the coin...

I cannot post and paste... you now have to pay to view on line ... I am not going to type out articles.... :roll: Nor get into professional bother :wink:

Basically - we had the "Anti" and the "Pro" in the same issue... .. and this is where you can see a parallel perhaps in scamera/helmet arguments as one side claims "lives are saved" and the other ... "well - no ... not to the extent as claimed... " :wink:

In Australia .. helmets are compulsory... but there has been no reduction in deaths since the introduction of this law. :? :shock:

Why?

Well :scratchchin:

Lot of reasons.. point of impact may not be the head -- other vital organs ...internal bleeds are also extremely serious and cause death...

Helmet is perhaps not that that well designed in that it can only absorb shock if head meets kerb at 12 mph. (hmmm... 12 mph... hmmmm!)



http://www.whycycle.co.uk/safety-helmets.htm

Perhaps a thicker polystyrene base may help

This - from above website


Quote:
Any moving object has energy. To stop an object from moving, this (kinetic) energy must be removed by conversion to other energy forms, eg heat and sound OR by using it to alter the chemical or structural composition of a material. Cars have "crumple zones": the front end is designed to concertina, absorbing terrific amounts of energy but whilst bringing the car to a halt (decelerating it) less abruptly and hopefully protecting the driver/passengers by lessening the effects of the impact on them. But there is only so much energy that can be absorbed by this crumple zone, and at higher speeds (increased speed = increased kinetic energy) insufficient energy can be absorbed to adequately protect the occupants. A helmet is designed to work in a very similar way, the polystyrene acting as the crumple zone, lessening the impact on the skull. The helmet will make contact first and stop moving. However, because it can be crushed, the head inside it is allowed to carry on moving for a short period of time as it crushes the polystyrene, an amount of energy being absorbed in the process. Because the skull is decelerated slightly more gradually, there is a lesser impact between both the skull onto the ground AND subsequently the brain onto the inside of the skull. Brain damage occurs if the impact between it and the skull is too great, ie too much energy has to be absorbed by the brain.
The maximum amount of energy is absorbed if the impact area is at its largest, but as the impact area decreases, so does the amount of energy that can be absorbed. If we look back at the example of a car, modern crash safety tests now include a test which only involves half of the crumple zone because very few real collisions involve a perfect head on impact. Cycle helmet standards also try to follow this principle, hence the impact test against a "kerb" shaped object.


Basically - how the helmet works ... the polystyrene does act as a buffer and absorbs some of the shock... thus it lessens some of the injuries to the head.


Where do I stand in this?

:scratchchin: Well ... IG receives CW each week and we buy each fortnight - and we buy a Swiss version each month :wink: We also subscribe to :shock: :shock: :shock: :shock: [the :shhh: magazine... OK // So we buy C+ each month.. :shock: :shock: (Useful stuff - lots of nice ride ideas.. gadgets :cloud9: reviewed) - and we also read a French cycling mag...on occasion.

Helps me keep a language "alive" :wink:

Oh ... POINT? :? of all that ?

Well ... :scratchchin: each one of those mags shows the cyclist wearing a helmet and to be honest - it looks normal to me

I have a collection of helmets.. from the £10 cheapo to the excessively and insanely "more cash than sense" one.... but it looks good ..trendy - stylish .. matches me lycra ... can mount a light on it.... :lol:

Also find - like IG - keeps me warm and dry - yet ventilated on winter rides - and if you get a variety of sizes so's you can wear a woolly hat if it's really cold ...

Summer? Keeps insects and summer rain away... 8-)

Safety? Have sassy kids.. could not insist they wear helmets if I do not.. :lol:

Also - perhaps I just feel that bit more secure if wearing one.... :wink:

Where I think the difference between scams and helmets as life savers lie?


And this is the controversial post which I hope will trigger reaction and fair - reasoned debate WITHOUT resorting to highly personal insult as opposed to friendly leg pulling banter when arguments are lost :wink:


One can absorb shock in the hopefully unlikely event of an accident

The other can do nowt other than record a speed - but cannot do much else.. and in any case the blipper is usually just blipping and compying on average .. :wink:

There is a huge difference between blips and blats ... and the blips are fined and the blats are perhaps part of the "twilight zone" :wink:



I am sure A and B cyclists, ed-m, johnsher and Peyote will have much to say on this topic... and perhaps our lurkers and cycling enthusiasts will feel moved to add their take to the helmet pros and cons....

Rest assured - this is a forum which does take road safety issues pretty darned seriously and the collective on this board - whether they ride bikes or not - see all road users as sharers... :wink:

Road safety is not about Speed cams... It's about each person taking responsibility and behaving with courtesy, manners and respect for other road users.....


attention to COAST principles is part of it.... and the COAST principles can be more of a life saver - whether you drive past the scam per the lolly or you ride wearing a helmet :wink:

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2006 21:50 
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Mad Moggie wrote:
In Australia .. helmets are compulsory... but there has been no reduction in deaths since the introduction of this law. :? :shock:

one thing that's never mentioned when this is brought up is the explosion in massive 4x4s (think landcruisers and the like) on Australian roads at about the same time as the helmet laws came in.

I think both sides need to realise is that a helmet is not designed to save you from a major impact with a motor vehicle (but then nothing probably would save you from that) but I do wear one as I'm of the opinion that it can reduce injuries in other falls.
I'll also pre-empt the "but they're too hot" brigade by saying that you've got to be kidding if you think it gets hot in this country. :stirthepot:


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2006 21:58 
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Pro choice, anti-compulsion and nannying by ignoramuses... :D


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2006 22:01 
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Mad Moggie wrote:
Helmet is perhaps not that that well designed in that it can only absorb shock if head meets kerb at 12 mph. (hmmm... 12 mph... hmmmm!)

Out of interest, how easy is it to exceed 12mph on a bicycle? If very easy I'd think that helmets are more about making you feel safe and perhaps take safe riding seriously. But if you really have to be going some then surely <12mph is usually going to make the difference. In the latter case I'd think it's more akin to the seatbelt issue rather than scams. Everyone's heard from someone who knows someone whose friend's dad's best mate's neice's hairdresser had a car crash while not belted up and would have been killed to bits if they'd been wearing the belt, but the reality is that those sorts of crashes are so unusual that having the belt on makes good sense. But if compulsory cycle helmets haven't achieved anything in Oz it sounds more like a placebo unless Aussie cyclists are exposed to risk that the helmets simply aren't designed to cope with.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2006 23:05 
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If I am going slower than 12mph I am going uphill.

I regularly hit over 30mph (with gradient help ;) ) and have been well over 40.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2006 23:25 
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Then a piece of safety equipment that won't be effective for a lot of the time seems a bit pointless. Were I a cyclist I'd go for the wind in the hair feel on that basis. Well, wind over the dome actually :oops: . Maybe if I'm ever tempted on to a bicycle again I could paint my head to look like a cycling helmet.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2006 23:30 
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Gatsobait wrote:
Then a piece of safety equipment that won't be effective for a lot of the time seems a bit pointless.

saying that is no different to the "if you hit me at 30 I'm going to die" claims.

Gatsobait wrote:
Out of interest, how easy is it to exceed 12mph on a bicycle?

solo cruising speed (ie on the flat) 15-20mph. Club run speed up to 25mph. Race speed... too bl**dy fast. Downhill I've gone over 55mph and 30mph+ is not uncommon.


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 27, 2006 23:54 
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johnsher wrote:
Gatsobait wrote:
Then a piece of safety equipment that won't be effective for a lot of the time seems a bit pointless.

saying that is no different to the "if you hit me at 30 I'm going to die" claims.

Gatsobait wrote:
Out of interest, how easy is it to exceed 12mph on a bicycle?

solo cruising speed (ie on the flat) 15-20mph. Club run speed up to 25mph. Race speed... too bl**dy fast. Downhill I've gone over 55mph and 30mph+ is not uncommon.

Not sure what you're getting at with the die-at-30 comparison, but it's late and I'm probably missing an obvious point through tiredness and not knowing much about cycling.

To me it sounds like over 12mph is the norm, and the Mog says that if your nut the kerb much over that the helmet might as well not be there. Now if Honda told me that my airbag only worked while the car was in 1st gear and was virtually ineffective in 2nd+ then I'd be wondering why they bothered fitting it in the first place, let alone touted it as a big safety feature. So by all means make it available as an option for those who want it, but those of who don't see the need for a 1st gear airbag shouldn't have to order the car with it fitted.

I think it ought to be a freedom of choice issue, at least where adult cyclists are concerned. Kids, don't know, maybe there's a case for compulsory helmet use. But for adults I think they should be given all the facts and left to decide for themselves whether or not they want one. I'd probably get one if I suddenly came over all lycra (unlikely :) ) but then half a chance of not knocking my brains out is marginally better than none at all.

Another couple of questions: what's a reasonably good bike cost these days and what's the price of a helmet? What I'm getting at is whether it's like buying a Jag and not ordering leather seats.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 00:29 
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Helmets can be up to £100. Not all the helmets on the market conform to 'good' standards.

They are a bit like m/bike helmets - you are supposed to replace them if the mother-in-law farts in the same room as them...


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 07:33 
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Gatsobait wrote:
Not sure what you're getting at with the die-at-30 comparison

just like in a car you tend to brake before hitting things.

Gatsobait wrote:
Now if Honda told me that my airbag only worked while the car was in 1st gear and was virtually ineffective in 2nd+

your airbag is virtually ineffective in 2nd+ because if your chances of survival at those speeds are rapidly diminishing.

Quote:
what's the price of a helmet?

you can get a decent helmet for about £20.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 08:46 
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johnsher wrote:
Gatsobait wrote:
Not sure what you're getting at with the die-at-30 comparison

just like in a car you tend to brake before hitting things.


not sure how true this is for most cyclist to road interfaces.

sure in the obvious case where someone pulls out or steps out in front of you you'll brake as hard as you can.

in many cases where the bike goes from under you due to grip, or your front end washes out and puts you into the kerb you don't have the time or the grip to effect any braking.

what the proportion between the two cases is i dont know.

the only times i've come off my impact speed has been my free travelling speed (to pickup a bit of SS jargon).


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 09:09 
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ed_m wrote:
the only times i've come off my impact speed has been my free travelling speed (to pickup a bit of SS jargon).

unless you land on your head then that's not actually the case (as far as helmet effectiveness is concerned).


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 11:08 
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johnsher wrote:
ed_m wrote:
the only times i've come off my impact speed has been my free travelling speed (to pickup a bit of SS jargon).

unless you land on your head then that's not actually the case (as far as helmet effectiveness is concerned).


which is the same for braking before you hit things.... ?

thus countering your own point :wink:


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 11:57 
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ed_m wrote:
which is the same for braking before you hit things.... ?

not sure what you're getting at but what I meant was that even if you manage to come off without slowing down (hitting black ice perhaps :( ) your head probably won't hit the ground at your free travelling speed as you're likely to cushion your fall with your arms/body.


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 23:18 
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Am not as fit as Mad Doc nor in same class as my sister Kriss when cycling... rest of family can maintain average cruising speeds of 25 mph und faster on a long ride.. I have to ease off und take little rests - und ride at slower pace from time to time.. especially when we are taking uphills. Ist a bit difficult for me to catch up - if they have gone off into distance.. I then "cheat" und put me und bike on a bus! :lol: :lol: - if und when I can :hehe:


Gatsobait wrote:
Another couple of questions: what's a reasonably good bike cost these days and what's the price of a helmet? What I'm getting at is whether it's like buying a Jag and not ordering leather seats.


Medium range bike? Decent one? I would say £400 upwards. Certainly the £100 from local supermarket ist not perhaps the sturdiest or comfiest to ride.. :roll: Ist sometimes a decent deal at one large nationwide car/bike store - mid range Raleighs currently at half price.... :wink:

You can spend a fortune of bikes. .. und then on extras - like saddles, lights (like Lupines und £450 to £650 may seem lot of dosh - but we spent more than twice this on our bike (It was disgraceful £1,600 K... a couple of years ago for us..... ) each in family have own individual preferences - as with cars :wink: - Some like upper to top range of Koni.. Bianchi .. Trek...DiamondBack.. Ridgeback.. Cannondale.. Brompton .. Scott... Swiss .. Giant... - these are all the Jag/Porsche/BMW/stealth Mercs of bikes... :wink:

You can spend fortunes as well building a customised bike.. frames, forks,, wheels..saddles ... und this can be lot of fun und matter of pride to build a bike which you "feel" suit you. :wink:

Ist bit like jazzing up a Moggie like we did.. und not talking of Mad Doc .. :lol: (though - as aside - you men are like pet cats und dogs.. you prick up ears - und hover - when you hear Mama's key in door as this means you get fed.. :wink: )

As for helmet? Well :scratchin: You have to look 8-) 8-) Sporty gear ist overpriced in real terms.. und you can pay £60 for a cycling skirt if I were that daft - und have made my own as well - from bits of old gear.. :wink: Ist easy to make flattering frilly of a skirty from old lycra shorts to go over lycra shorts) :wink: .. und as much und more for the leggings, shorty und tops... - so I tend to buy last season's colours und- style - (it does not change that much - lycra short, skirt und leggings do tend to keep same "cut und tailoring" :wink: in the sales :wink:

But ja - when you pay literally a couple of thousand out for a bicycle - you will invest in suitable, hard wearing, washable, but durable und VISIBLE gear as well :wink:

But ist like everything else - it seem expensive at time - but not really in terms of how long it can be worn for.

Helmet - bit different - - especially if you are unlucky enough to fall und helmet hit ground. But wear und tear - you do have to replace...und I think more often than some of the clothes too overall - but then again ist individual thin I guess :wink:

Mad Doc still has bike he had as boy und mine from childhood ist lurking in garage back in Wildhaus. These were "proper" steel ones with mudguards as standard ;) - und mine had the cutest basket on the front too ;)

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 28, 2006 23:45 
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ed_m wrote:
johnsher wrote:
Gatsobait wrote:
Not sure what you're getting at with the die-at-30 comparison

just like in a car you tend to brake before hitting things.


not sure how true this is for most cyclist to road interfaces.

sure in the obvious case where someone pulls out or steps out in front of you you'll brake as hard as you can.



But surely you have been looking at the road ahead - und antiipating that someone might just step in your path or from apparent ignition of car engine - person might just pull in front.. und am always wary near a left junction in case.. :yikes: Ist not that different to driving. You are on wheels und working with others on roads .. some of whom are not quite as skilled as they should be...

(Off topic - motorbiker from hell overtook car waiting at a mini roundabout - und drove straight over the mini - und how the cyclist und the car already there manage to avoid this :censored: father of all twazaks on planet .. shall never know... I really thought I would be administering first aid there...but cyclist's braking was impeccable.. :bow: whoever he was... bike remained upright throughout - he was in control... und so was oncoming driver.)

You brake too hard on the front - you go over the bars... I tend to do as Mad Doc does.. feather the rear brake if I feel bike ist running away on me on a downhill etc... .. und in emergency - I tend to do what IG advise me to do - (I could not cope with nor perhaps survive any more breaks in limbs ... :cry: ) ... I hit the rears first und then the fronts - this tend to pull up the bike fast und with a control which should prevent - allegedly - any catapult over the bars. I cannot prove this at speed ... have not tested it - I left that to IG to demonstrate :twisted: Und went "Ach ja... look easy when you do it.. but am not even gonna try it... [/i]


Quote:
in many cases where the bike goes from under you due to grip, or your front end washes out and puts you into the kerb you don't have the time or the grip to effect any braking.

what the proportion between the two cases is i dont know.

the only times i've come off my impact speed has been my free travelling speed (to pickup a bit of SS jargon).


Have not experienced this. am country yokel ....


. only time I nearly had "off" und into hedges -- was due to little present on road. Ist OK - got my own back.. culprit usually end up getting roasted in my oven :D

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 29, 2006 20:27 
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I'm anti-compulsion and pro-choice. The only time I won't ride without one is off-road.

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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 10:01 
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I normally ride above 12 mph. Two years ago I fell off at around 20 mph with no helmet. Amongst my various road rashes was a bump on my forehead. The "boss" insisted that from that point forward I would wear a helmet and offered to pay for it. Money being no object I bought a Giro Pneumo for £72. I can honestly say I don't notice it - it's very light, has good airflow for those hot summer days (when will we get one of those again?). I wear a cloth racing cap under it and on really cold days a silk balaclava under that. I don't miss the wind in my hair but there is a bit of wind noise like you get with a motorbike helmet.

I have no wish to impose helmets on others but it makes a lot of sense for me now. I don't really know why I was prepared to pay £1800 for a new bike but not £72 for a helmet. Priorities all wrong, I suppose.

I too ride at 40-45 mph down a steep hill and I do think about what might happen if I fall off but only for a second or two, then I get back to concentrating on not falling off! :)


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 10:41 
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A Cyclist wrote:
I too ride at 40-45 mph down a steep hill and I do think about what might happen if I fall off but only for a second or two, then I get back to concentrating on not falling off! :)


:lol:
yes the point i realised i was watching my speedo go through 47mph was the point i decided i should think harder about where i was going.

(and subsequently changed the display to something less interesting, like how much further i had to go)


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PostPosted: Fri Mar 31, 2006 20:09 
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For £50 - you can buy a Rudy Kontakt ...

CW reviews - and its selling point for me ain't the 24 vents and the adjustment discs for a good fit...

It's the little bug net which nabs those hateful insects and wasps 8-) 8-) 8-) :bow: :clap:

Available in 6 ] You NOTICED " colours too! :wink:

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