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Discussion in 'Equipment' started by Highcountry, Apr 24, 2006.
For $630 it better be good.
Hmm...Interesting, but this is not the product that I was talking about. The SMX BIONIC jacket is a protective undergarment meant to be worn under a regular jacket. The jacket above, though, just might contain elements of the SMX BIONIC, I don't know, never seen this one before.
There, the link above will show the ALPINESTARS S-MX BIONIC PROTECTIVE JACKET. You could even buy it using the link for just under $300 which sounds like very cheap insurance to me.
Carry a .14 gauge needle with you in your first aid kit or toolbox. I have treated 2 tension pneumothorax injuries in the past year (blunt force trauma to the chest causing collapsed lung with air getting in and now way out). Easy to treat and they will save lives. Have your riding buddy show you how. I'm certain this is a large portion of her injuries.
Simple terms, stick a large bore needle between the 2nd/3rd ICS on the side of the injury to relieve the air pressure. Learn this, you will use it if you spend time on tracks or the road.
Combat medics are being told that if there are two things you can do to save a life right now, it's a tension pneumo and a sucking chest wound. I'm guessing you will not likely come across the sucking chest wound...
Well, I've since found out that the SPIDI airbag jacket is not available here but AIRBAGVEST apparently has a few jackets for sale that are equipped with the AIRBAGVEST, or you could buy the vest by itself. Here, check it out:
My head on motorcycle accident not only snaped my tibia in half but knocked the wind out of me to the point that I thought my lung would colapse.
I had excellent back, shoulder and elbow protection (Dianese) but had no chest protection and feel that if I had the chest protection it may have prevented the 60 seconds or so of having the wind knocked out of me. Knee protection was cheap Fox equipment but it may have saved the bone from tearing skin.
The EMT's only see the worse of the worse and if more people were not wearing protection than they would see more cases, the protection works!
+1 on that.
Keep it up licence2ill.
Unless your bike happens to be an airbag equipped Gold Wing you won't be able to top an airbag jacket for protection. It's state-of-the-art, the real deal.
I thought pressure suits were just to keep your muscles from spasming under fatigue...no actual protection in and of itself. Adding armor to it has the nicety of fixating the armor a little better on your body, but as licence2ill says...an often misunderstood benefit.
This is basically what I wear for MX racing and general off road riding. Its pretty light and mobil, yet still offers decent protection.
Look for something with suspended shoulders and sturdy plastic (usually lexan) that will disperse energy across your chest and probably more importaintly prevent punctures and sharp points of impact.
The Acerbis Zoom II series are very good as are the most major brand's "chest protectors".
What you want to avoid are the small, usually soft foam, roost protectors. They are generally designed to provide some roost protection and be worn under the jersey. Some racers find a chest protector too hot, bulky etc and opt for a jersy only. The roost protector is targeted at this crowed and intended to provide them with some protection from roost (which can actually be quite painfull). Its not so much that these items are poor quality or pointless, its just that they are designed to provide a specific function that very few here would find usefull while being very light and unrestrictive (which is generally an overriding factor in mx racing). I personally don't find a chest protector an issue at all while racing and wear one for all off road adventures be it practice, mx or hs racing.
here's an example
Here are some shots of me geared up as I normally am for MX (only difference for off-road is that I add elbow guards)
Thanks for all the thoughtful replies here, it's a lot to read and absorb.
My EMT riding pal has clarified, she was talking about "roost" deflectors specifically, as not being much for protecting from impact.
Wonder if anyone's messed around with the EVS Revolution 4 protector? Not much for the spine, but it seems a little different from other stuff out there:
WARNING: airbagvest.com is an unauthorized vendor of the Hit-Air Airbag jackets, and quite possibly a scam site. See the big warnings on the hit-air site below.
I'm trying to get into biking, and I've been watching the airbag jackets for a while, and was very happy to see that the Hit-Air Jackets (http://www.hit-air.com/english/main.html) have finally become available in the united states. The only vendor in the US right now is Bikebone: http://www.bikebone.com/page/BBSC/CTGY/AT
At $500-$700, I think they are a bit expensive for a jacket, especially considering that there are not a whole lot of reviews of these things in English just yet. While I was looking at the Hit-Air MS, I decided to pick up a Rev'It Airforce for the summer, and possibly grab the Hit-Air Motorrad closer to the winter time. The Motorrad is not yet sold by Bikebone, but they promised it would be available soon for $700.
I'm still not 100% sold on the Airbag concept, but it's nice to see some innovation coming to the US. Now where are those Reevu helmets?
Thanks for the heads up on this, the site does appear a bit cheesy and their Terms of Sale are quite one-sided and customer-unfriendly. Hit-Air is the system used in the SPIDI jacket and seems to be the only wearable/reusable system available, though barely in the US.
Airbags ARE the state-of-the-art for impact protection and I'm curious as to your objection to it. We simply haven't come up with anything better and future protection developement is certainly headed in that direction. If it deploys correctly, absolutely nothing beats an air-bag.
Thats a bold claim.
Any independant evidence?
I see some test data on the website. Any plans for CE approval testing for example.
Its a tough crowd round here, you better be prepared if licence2ill turns up again
Well, the evidence is there in plain sight, in automotive, motorcycling and race trackside applications.
If I understood his post correctly, Licensetoill was talking about and had pictures of a narrow off-road chest/back protector which he thought had a dubious Standard 1 (whatever that is) certification and concluded by, among other things, expressing doubts about a horse-riding chest protector. These items are not for street applications and, no offense to him, the relevance of his posting escaped me a bit.
Air-cushioning and styrofoam are the best impact protection that the industry has come up with so far. The evidence in numerous applications is indisputable.
Umm...you might want to read my post again. The horse rider's torso vest/body protector is the best piece available here in the US. As far as I know, we can't get any air bag vests, and they are limited to specific accident scenarios at the moment, price is also quite a bit more, and you are limited to a specific outer garment. But, yeah, from the numbers I saw for one aribag that was a back-protector only, the force transmission numbers were much lower than anything else out there, passed the motoryclist back protector stnadard with a 0.9kN reading. ANyhitng under 4kN is considered apporpriate for rib fractrures by the medical community, and is the bar for a few body protector standards, including horse rider's protectors, but unfortuantely not including any specific motorcyclist protectors.
The horse rider's body protector standard BETA 2000 LEVEL 3 allows 4kN of force to reach the chest/ribs/back/clavicle @45Joules, which is considered the appropriate level at which ribs will fracture above. It covers a much greater area than any other piece, around the entire torso. Not a single motoryclist-specific piece gets close in both coverage or force transmission numbers. There is no motorcyclist standard for chest protection, though T-Pro has recently come out with a chest/rib protector that they say meets the level 1 of the motorcylist back protector standard as far as impact management(not coverage). The motorcyclist CE back protector standard(EN1621-2) does not call for coverage outside the basic back area, and the force transmission levels are a hugely inappropriate compromise, with level 1 being at 18kN of force @50Joules, 4.5 times the level of force it takes to break ribs, and level 2, the high-performance level at 9kN. There are only 3 or 4 motorcyclist back protectors that can acheive level 2 status within that standard, possibly a couple that can pass down to 4kN @45J. The horse rider standard uses two diffferent anvils, a flat and a kerbstone, the motoryclist back protector standard uses a kerbstone only. The anvils are basically a 10lb mass dropped from 1 meter to get the resulting impact energy.
Not a single piece of hard plastic, biofoam, or any "roost" protector or hard plastic back protector is apporved to any standard. The only plastic-covered back protectors that are apporved typicalyl don't do as well in the CE tests, but some have passed with a foam or crushable honeycomb core, like the Dainese Wave, the Astars Tech, or the level 2 passing Velocity Gear, which is a thi plastic with a core of the same material that T-Pro uses, Astorsorb rubber gel-foam. The Astars Bionic undergarment mentioned above has an uncertified chest piece(again no standard for motorcyclist chest pieces anyway), but it's a "hard" plastic, so take your guess on it being comletely ineffective as a real impact managing piece, the back protector is the Tech Race, which is a scaled-down for racing version of the Tech that is not approved to the motoryclist back prortector stnadard becuase they have taken-out the energy absorbing EPS core and used dual-density foam with less coverage area to make it more comfortable for racing use. The only proper pieces on either of those jerseys are the shoulder and elbow pieces. The last test of Astars leathers I saw, said the shoulder protectors in the leather suit were too small, and did not meet the proper sizing guidelines of the CE standard they were marked to(EN1621-1 limb protectors)
Roost protectors are good for small pebbles and durable use, small bumps and scrapes, not for falls or impacts with the handle bars or anyhting else. It is a shame, and rather silly, that horse rider's have better products available, though perhaps it's obvious they have put more time, effort, and thought into real solutions. The airbag products do appear to limit forces better than anything else, but for $150 a horse rider body protector vest is better for limiting injuries to a degree that no other available vest, chest protector, or motorycyclist back protecor is able to achieve. WHich by the way, is still minimal, it's only a matter of minimizing rib fractures and bruising. Here's what 4kN of force transmission will get you in ters of injury protection:
Level 3 Purple label
Protectors providing a level of protection that is considered appropriate for normal horse riding, competitions and for working with horses. Protectors to this level should:
* Prevent minor bruising that would have produced stiffness and pain.
* Reduce significant soft tissue injuries to the level of bruising.
* Prevent a limited number of rib fractures.
I'm not sure if you saw from my previous post, but at least in the US, you can now buy the Hit-Air Motorcycle airbag vests (not just jackets) from http://www.bikebone.com/page/BBSC/CTGY/AT .. they've only been on the US market for 3-4 weeks now, however. $500-$700 for a vest (the same cost as a jacket)
Before this thread I thought it odd that Bikebone also sells Air Vests for Equestrians ($500). I just wasn't aware how dangerous horse riding was.
Well, horse riding isn;t neccessarily more dangerous. The most denagerous type is of equestrian riding would be racing, but of course, just like any other form of racing, concessions are made for weight and comfort and protective requirements are typically less for jockey events. But because the majoroity of other riding involves young girls, perhaps those issues are being better dealt with in that arena. Though some of that may include some prettyfast and high jumping, which I have done some of recreationally and I would say it's pretty freakin dangerous, just not quite motocross. If memeory serves me, the last motocross-related death I read aobut was caused bymajor chest trauma as well.
There is no doubt in my mind that air is already better and has loads more potential, and I would urge anyone to buy an airbag jacket and be an early adopter. I do have my quesitons aobut it's usefulness, and the outer garment issues, and the obvious price range of today, but other than that, it appears to be a worhty proiduct.
My issue is that if you are going to spend $100 on a roost protector, or $200 or $300 on a properly certified motoryclist back and chest protector, like the T-pro stuf, or even a Dainese or Astars jersey, you are getting more real impact proteciton and more coverage, for less out of a horse rider's BETA 2000 Level 3 rated vest, at $150.
As an aside to that, since the Astars, Velocity Gear, and Dainese jerseys have been mentioned. The horse riders standard for shoulder protectors also allows less force transmission than the CE standards for motoryclists. Much like the Cambridge high-performance standard for impact protectors, they allow only 25kN for a pass, as that is believed to be a more appropriate level for which limb bone breaks are thought to occur, rather than the motorcycist CE limb protector requirement of 35kN(another motoryclist standard compromise). There are a few motoryclist protectors that can reach that 25kN limit, but the only ones I know of that advertise that ability are the T-Pro high-performance and extreme performance protectors which pass the Cambridge requireements. The Cambridge high-performance standard calls-out for higher impact energies of 75 and 100J as well, which is even more ideal as real "surpassing" or "exceeding" is not within the force transmssion after the injurious limits have been met, but in the increase in range of usefulness. The BETA horse rider shoulder protector standard uses the same 45J as the torso protector guidelines, sizing restrictions appear similar to the CE motorcylist requirements for Type-B sizes. I've seen numbers for Gericke Hiprotec pieces as well, which is the same bascic material as the T-Pro stuff, as I understand it, at 19kN in the CE tests. Dainese also published some numbers a couple years ago showing most of hteir protectors at anywhere between 26-29kN, with a copule of the Techno pieces at 21 and 24kN in the 50J CE test.
This thread is fascinating and has a ton of great info on standards, but I really think too much is being made of the existing airbag vest/jacket technology that is on the market. I have gradually grown into an ATGATTer over the years (started with jeans & a t-shirt) and have watched the development of motorcycle airbags with great interests. They save lives in cars and will someday with motorcycles. But I'm not so sure we're there yet.
As I understand it, the only way that an airbag (fixed or vest) can work is for it to deploy FAST. That is because at 60mph (which I never exceed ) you are traveling at 88 feet per second. Even at a quarter of that speed, 22 feet is a long way to travel in a second. That is why airbags inflate in times that are measured in milliseconds, with most having inflation times of 20-25 ms. The sensor also has to be factored in and that takes 10-15 ms to send the signal to the airbag telling it to inflate. Still, you are only looking at traveling 2-3 feet in this time (from 60mph) - plenty of time do do you a lot of good.
There is absolutely no way that a CO2 based system (with a manual coiled release) can ever approach these times. The companies advertise "1/2 second inflation times" or, more accurately, 500 milliseconds (more than 20 times that of a conventional airbag) - and this is not counting the release actuation. This means you would have to fly at least 11 feet before the thing did you any good - if you were only going 15 miles an hour! All the major companies that are/were looking into airbag systems for bikes (eg. Dainese) are experimenting with the same systems used in cars - an explosive mixture that has "real world" inflation times that may actually save you in the event of an impact. Everything else is just going to be nice padding for your trip to the hospital.
I would be happy if someone can come up with scenarios where CO2 airbag vests/jackets make a real world difference. I doubt anyone can, however, and that is why few to none of the major manufacturers have actively developed/promoted one.
Very insightful. I had not previously considered the possibility that 500ms is not fast enough. I'd be curious to see some crash videos analyzed to measure when a 500ms inflation would have actually occurred. Your post was interesting enough that I e-mailed the Hit-Air folks (mugen%hit-air.com) to see their opinion on how useful the jacket was with the 500ms delay.