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New Helite Vests and Jackets

Discussion in 'Vendors' started by ErikMotoMan, Feb 1, 2017.

  1. Sitheach86

    Sitheach86 Long timer

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    Oh and also can you wear a backpack with this somehow? Maybe underneath?
    #81
  2. ErikMotoMan

    ErikMotoMan Airbag crash survivor!

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    This is the Wunderlich tankbag, 15 liter - expands to 25 liter.
    #82
  3. ErikMotoMan

    ErikMotoMan Airbag crash survivor!

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    Definitely NOT underneath. You don't want the contents of a back pack to be pushed into your spine or ribs.
    #83
    ShenandoahRider likes this.
  4. Sitheach86

    Sitheach86 Long timer

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    It would just be a hydropak. Good to know. Maybe over with loose straps.

    Your vest fits inside that tank bag at 15 liters or did you expand it to 25?
    #84
  5. ErikMotoMan

    ErikMotoMan Airbag crash survivor!

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    The vest folded up and fit inside the 15 liter, non expanded tank bag
    #85
  6. thebugslayer

    thebugslayer Been here awhile

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    not to be vain but...+1
    #86
  7. ErikMotoMan

    ErikMotoMan Airbag crash survivor!

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    Lol. 'You almost look like a cop' is the one I hear most often. That's fine with me if it buys me a little deference from cagers. Ofcourse, there's 2 sides to that coin...
    #87
    ShenandoahRider likes this.
  8. TomCrean

    TomCrean Smelly old tramp.

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    Just took delivery of my Helite Airvest and thought some feedback on fitment may be helpful for others. I'll be wearing it with an Alpinestars Valparaiso 2 jacket which I've already fitted with the A* KR2i back protector. I'm 5'10"/176cm tall, 185lbs/85kgs and wear a US44/EU54/XL sized jacket in Alpinestars sizing. The Airvest is a regular 'L' size and it's a perfect fit. I had to adjust the velcro webbing just a little to get the fit nice and snug but not restrictive, maybe taking it in by about an inch/3cm total on each of the 3 straps.

    Some other comments:

    Mine was ordered from the local distributor here and delivered directly from France, taking about 7 working days as it was surface shipped, not airmailed (compressed cylinders included). I was pleased to see that the product is manufactured/assembled in France which gives me more confidence in the quality of the vest. It's a very neat item, well made and in black, it doesn't look too odd. I'm not concerned about visibility as my panniers, rear of the bike, helmet and so on are already wearing lots of reflexite. The black Airvest draws the eye a little less if you're wearing it off the bike, visiting a shop or whatever. In terms of price in Europe they run at around the Eur 500 plus shipping price point for the original Airvest model. Replacement CO2 60g cylinders are around Eur 24 each. I checked with the local marine suppliers/chandlers here and they can supply effectively an identical cylinder (thread/pressure/volume) for around the same price, which in theory gives the possibility to fly somewhere with the vest (minus the cylinder), then fit a locally purchased cylinder before commencing your ride. The 60g CO2 cartridge is used in XL/XXL sized auto-inflating life jackets used by sailors and anglers/leisure fishermen for example. Useful to know perhaps.
    #88
  9. ErikMotoMan

    ErikMotoMan Airbag crash survivor!

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    Thanks Tom, very useful. Your comments echo my experience exactly. I did choose hi viz mostly because it matches my helmet and the case toppers on my bike

    IMG_4100.JPG

    I'm the same size as you and wear the same size leather jacket with an integral backprotector underneath my HELITE vest. Thanks again for your valued input. If you ever make it to California look me up, please?
    #89
    docjekyll2002 and TomCrean like this.
  10. Geschift

    Geschift Been here awhile

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    Hi there folks,

    Finally, a discussion about airbag systems!
    I've read the whole thread, and there's a few things and experiences I'd like to add.

    I first heard about the existence of an airbag vest/jacket in 2007.
    Found it was a bit pricy and didn't expect needing it (idiot).
    And what do you know; august 2007 I had an motorcycle accident and broke my back in two places (+ lot of other shit).

    Quess what ... I got back on the bike!
    And quess again ... I then bought myself an airbag vest!
    It was a HitAir vest, comfortable and visible.
    Sold it two years ago since it had gotten a bit pale really, further on in perfect condition though.
    So I had it for some 8 years and drove some 20.000mls with it.

    Then I bought a MotoAir vest, ofcourse as HiVis as can be.
    Never needed it so far, neither made use of the previous one.

    What I'd like to say, is that both felt heavy in weight.
    But that's pretty much all the negative stuff I can say.
    It's like taking a heavier bike for a ride; at first you notice, but soon you'll get used to it.

    I'd reccomend a vest, because as mentioned before; you can wear it over any jacket throughout the year.
    I'd go for yellow ... any time, no doubt.
    Reason is simple: visibility for WHEN you've fallen, not so much for when riding.

    When I fell in 2007 I slided off of the road and ended up in some roadside bushes.
    I laid there for some 10 minutes, but understandably it seemed like half an hour.
    And it's an experience I'll take to the grave with me.

    I was wearing the usual black clothing, and was the last biker in a group of four.
    It was on a busy (±30 mls p/h road) road in dry and sunny conditions, and somehow nobody had seen it happen.

    One girl had heared something while driving with the top down, and saw a small cloud of dust when looking back.
    She drove back, but didn't notice me.
    My mates drove by in search of me as well, be didn't notice me either.
    My phone rang, but I couldn't reach it.
    Believe me ... WEAR A HIVIS vest/jacket not only for when your ON the road, cause you'll never know where you might end up ...

    I'm not gonna say what brand you should of for.
    But please go for an airbag vest/jacket as soon as you can afford it.
    And please do consider my advise for the HIVIS version.

    For now, take care!
    Drive safe, and don't forget to enjoy eeeeeeeeevery minute you ride!

    IMG_3147.JPG
    #90
    Uke, docjekyll2002, mbabc and 3 others like this.
  11. Geschift

    Geschift Been here awhile

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    Here's a better pic:

    Hi-Vis-airbagvest-voorkant-414x414.jpg

    This doesn't look to bad now does it?
    Any road worker would be jalous when seeing you drive by haha!
    #91
    ErikMotoMan likes this.
  12. TomCrean

    TomCrean Smelly old tramp.

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    I'm glad you've not had any need to put your vests to a real world test and of course that you're back riding and hopefully enjoying it.

    I take the point you're making in so far as it MIGHT be easier to spot a fallen rider if they're wearing a HiViz vest in SOME limited circumstances, especially if the rest of their gear is black or dark colours. In my case the rest of my gear is light colours and full of 3M reflective panels including a yellow Arai XD4 with reflexite decals for good measure. If I come off and can't be located easily it's very unlikely to be simply because my vest is black instead of Hi-Viz.

    For many, Hi-Viz vests are just not something they'll want to wear all the time. I certainly don't, so I didn't want to spend many hundreds of euros/dollars on an airbag vest in Hi-Viz, something I wouldn't want to wear. There's no sense in that, no matter what you might think personally about the reasons for or against Hi-Viz everything. ;)
    #92
  13. ErikMotoMan

    ErikMotoMan Airbag crash survivor!

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    After a great open house day at Long Beach BMW (ironically) speaking about rider safety training I find myself in the hospital tonight with a fractured hip. Rear ended by a teenage fuckhead. This not meant as a racial slur, but we all know the type that wears flip flops, white tube socks, satin shorts and doesn't understand the concept of actually lifting their feet while walking? Or not texting while breathing?

    As traffic slowed I checked my mirrors to see if the car behind me was slowing, having confirmed that, I redirected my attention to the car in front of me. Lots of room, no problem. Then I heard squealing tires and it was all over:

    IMG_6403.JPG

    A chain reaction caused by the darker car hitting the car behind me ended up totaling 3 cars and my BMW. Looks like my bike actually ended up on the hood of the car, and then slid off:

    IMG_6404.JPG

    You can see the main culprits car resting partially on top of the concrete center divider, while the paramedics are working on me:

    IMG_6399.JPG

    IMG_6401.JPG

    The HELITE airbag vest did its job, absolutely no injuries to my torso, the horseshoe collar stabilized my helmet as advertised. In fact there's not even a scratches on the helmet. My left hip, understandably, did not fare as well, surgery is tomorrow. Wish me luck.
    #93
    Uke, JoePalma, TomCrean and 4 others like this.
  14. PTJCAL

    PTJCAL Adventurer

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    Good luck @ErikMotoMan. I hope everything goes perfect during surgery and rehabilitation.
    #94
  15. ErikMotoMan

    ErikMotoMan Airbag crash survivor!

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    Thanks! I could have broken ribs, back, neck so I consider myself lucky!
    #95
  16. Vicresendez

    Vicresendez Been here awhile

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    Wow that's all that comes mind at the moment. My prayers are being sent your way for your speedy recovery. I've been on the fence should I get the vest or the adv jacket. Anyway I hope you get better soon. Please keep us updated on how things progress.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #96
  17. ErikMotoMan

    ErikMotoMan Airbag crash survivor!

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    Surgery in 6 hours. In case something goes horribly wrong, know that I have come to love this motley crew of biker hooligans. Oh crap, frigging drugs talking. But you know what I mean.
    #97
  18. Vicresendez

    Vicresendez Been here awhile

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    Get well for now ! Are you a local ? Do you have family nearby ? If your bored pm me.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
    #98
  19. flei

    flei cycletherapist

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    Wow, bummer, this really sucks! I bet you hoped when you started this thread that you were not gonna be the one to give the vest a "field test"! Ouch, it must have hurt like hell when they put you on that back-board! I wish you the best for your surgery and recovery, and that you are riding asap. Oh, and that you never have to test the vest again!

    PS- you sure are white for a guy that lives in So Cal; don't you ever take advantage of being out in the sun? :D
    #99
    SmittyBlackstone and ErikMotoMan like this.
  20. Geschift

    Geschift Been here awhile

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    What a shock to hear all of this on this nice'n sunny sunday morning Eric :-(
    Great to hear that the airbag has done it's job properly, please do realize that things could otherwise have been al looooooooot worse.

    Good luck on the recovery, starting with the operation of course.
    I can tell you this; there's little one can do during recovery, so please do take your time and make the best of it.
    Don't rush anything, and don't forget to keep smiling (when thinking of your next bike run).
    Hope you'll find the time (haha) to keep us posted here on the forum.

    Please keep in mind that were all hoping for the best mate.
    Good luck my friend, all the best from over here in the Netherlands!
    Ralph.