Helmets? - MR2 Owners Club Message Board
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post #1 of 30 (permalink) Old March 22nd, 2011, 02:13 Thread Starter
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Helmets?

What do you guys use to protect you egg? I' leaning towards an SA rated 2010 helmet, full face with a way to remove the visor. What do you use?
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post #2 of 30 (permalink) Old March 22nd, 2011, 03:54
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I'm assuming you want it for track days right?
Well the new safety rating is snell sa2010 the old one and still widely accepted is snell sa2005.
With all helmets, the visor is removable. You can buy smoked or colored visors.

I have a Pyrotect open face snell sa 2005 I been using for years. But soon I'll going to get a full face one.
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post #3 of 30 (permalink) Old March 22nd, 2011, 12:09
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SA2010 is the way to go

pick up a headsock of some sort too - will help keep the interior of the helmet alot fresher
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post #4 of 30 (permalink) Old March 22nd, 2011, 12:11
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I use my motorcycle helmet (Shoei RF1000) for autox. No track days yet.


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post #5 of 30 (permalink) Old March 22nd, 2011, 13:33
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2010 for sure.
Your best bet to go check out some local racing supply shops, and try on different models. It has to fit you well and not move around.
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post #6 of 30 (permalink) Old March 23rd, 2011, 12:07
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Along the lines of greater safety I would like to comment that a lighter helmet is a safer helmet. Safer in terms of fatigue on your neck muscles and in terms of impact forces during an impact. Think about it, if a helmet weighs 1 pound more than a competitors helmet at 1G (gravity) then during a 10G impact that helmet weighs 10 pounds more! That is ten more pounds pulling your head in the direction of the impact.

Look for helmets that are made from composite materials like Kevlar. Some budget brand helmets are made from 100% Fiberglass only, these are the heavy ones and I would steer you away from those brands.

One of the main reasons we love the Gforce helmets is that they are made from a fiberglass and kevlar blend that is lighter than other helmets at the same or ever higher price points. Please take a look at our helmet selection available on our website. Thanks!

Charles Buren
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post #7 of 30 (permalink) Old March 29th, 2011, 16:59
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I looked around and called around in the bay area without too much luck (I'm from San Mateo). A lot of places carry motorcycle helmets but not automotive helmets. Finally decided to make the long trip up to Sonoma to Wine Country Motor Sports at Infineon. They have a shop there that sells lots of helmets and you can try them on. The guy there was helpful and showed me some older SA2005 models for cheaper (not much stock though).

I ended up going with a HJC AR-10 II and the link to the HJC website is here:
http://www.hjc-motorsports.com/ar10ii.htm. I also shelled out a couple more bucks for the rubberized black.

I don't wear it often, mostly for the occasional trackday and gokarting. If you find a place more local that sells helmets let me know!
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post #8 of 30 (permalink) Old April 6th, 2011, 11:19
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Don't remove the visor. Even for tin tops (cars with roofs and windshield). As the Charles Esplenaub Spec Miata fire at Thunderhill article in GRM reminded me, you want to be able to drop the visor in the event of a fire.
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post #9 of 30 (permalink) Old April 6th, 2011, 13:46
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eye protection is also not a bad thing... I had 2 close calls back in my open face helmet days - one pebble right to my cheek bone, one tire booger straight to my eyebrow. Both were less than 1" from potential disaster
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post #10 of 30 (permalink) Old April 19th, 2011, 17:52
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arg0naut
I looked around and called around in the bay area without too much luck (I'm from San Mateo). A lot of places carry motorcycle helmets but not automotive helmets. Finally decided to make the long trip up to Sonoma to Wine Country Motor Sports at Infineon. They have a shop there that sells lots of helmets and you can try them on. The guy there was helpful and showed me some older SA2005 models for cheaper (not much stock though).

I ended up going with a HJC AR-10 II and the link to the HJC website is here:
http://www.hjc-motorsports.com/ar10ii.htm. I also shelled out a couple more bucks for the rubberized black.

I don't wear it often, mostly for the occasional trackday and gokarting. If you find a place more local that sells helmets let me know!
This is a problem a lot of places, and after taking a chance once and not being thrilled with the fit, I won't buy another helmet without trying it on. Also, since HJC was brought up I would like to comment that, in my experience/opinion (remember that preference and just the general shape of your dome plays a big part), the companies that also make bike helmets (HJC, Arai, Bell, etc) seem to make more comfortable auto helmets than the companies that JUST make auto helmets, at least at the entry level (looking at you, Simpson). I tried on a Simpson Bandit (Admit it, if you been somewhere that had them, you've done it too. Everybody wants to be the Stig.) and I gotta tell ya, I wouldn't buy one. Did not fit me well at all.

Other factors to consider are removable liner (nice feature if you use it a lot), size/shape/placement of the eyeport for full-face, eye protection as mentioned (I don't even let passengers go without sunglasses in my 91T with the tops off), predrilled for HANS if you intend to do any wheel-to-wheel in the future (I needed it for LeMons, for example. Team rule, not LeMons rule.), weight, etc.
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post #11 of 30 (permalink) Old April 25th, 2011, 05:50
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Arai.. end of story
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post #12 of 30 (permalink) Old April 25th, 2011, 11:44
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The GForce helmets look to be more budget friendly, whereas the Arai helmets would require a bank loan. What are the major quality differences? Should you avoid craigslist for these sorts of items, assuming the fit was right? I don't want to pay more than what my car is worth, but I also want to protect my egg.
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post #13 of 30 (permalink) Old April 25th, 2011, 15:20
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arai, hands down the BEST helmet company in the WORLD, personal protection shouldnt be spared any penny.
Arai helmets are all hand made in japan, and are the only helmet company to win the JD Power award (i think) 10 years running.
Its worth every cent, that and they make the helmet to fit your "egg"
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post #14 of 30 (permalink) Old April 25th, 2011, 15:52
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If you buy the pricest / nicest / highest end stuff out there as far as driving gear most if not all people people will not have enough money left over to actually use any of it - so what's the point? Buy whatever has the best VALUE (price-features-protection level) - going blindly with whoever has the highest price isn't wise advice.

Arai stuff from my quick search starts at $800+. That's very damned pricey for a helmet, doubly so for someone just starting out...

Bell (and their sub-brands) hit the button for me, still good reputation but ~1/3rd the price of high end stuff like Arai - more money to go actually use the stupid thing ftw!
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post #15 of 30 (permalink) Old April 25th, 2011, 18:19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MacPepper
... whereas the Arai helmets would require a bank loan...
Nope, that's this one.
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post #16 of 30 (permalink) Old April 26th, 2011, 16:44
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MacPepper
The GForce helmets look to be more budget friendly, whereas the Arai helmets would require a bank loan. What are the major quality differences? EDIT
Safe Drives used to be a retailer for Arai helmets. At the same time we sold the Gforce helmets. Side by side there are some differences.

1) Interior. Arai offers removable cheek pad inserts. These both allow you to custom fit the helmet and allow you to replace the pads if they ever tear or wear out. Those pads do tear and they are expensive to replace! I have used Gforce helmets for years and years and never have I seen the interior tear the way I have seen the Arai tear.

+1 for Gforce

2) Shells. Arai offers a very nice Kevlar and Fiberglass shell that is lighter than many of the competitions Fiberglass only shells. A lighter helmet is a safer helmet. Interestingly, Gforce offers the exact same shell type and the weight is nearly identical to the Arai. Bell Helmets, last time I checked you have to step up to a much more expensive helmet to get the kevlar composite shells..

+1 for Gforce

3) Certifications. Arai, Bell, Gforce are all available with the exact same safety certifications.

= Gforce

4) Price...

+1 for Gforce

I myself bought my first SA certified helmet from Gforce in 2002. It was a great helmet. I have bought two more for my own use since that time and I will buy another Gforce helmet in the future.


For the money, Safe Drives (and myself) cannot find a better helmet.

If you would like to take a look at our selection of helmets from Gforce click on the link in sig.

Thanks for reading!

Charles Buren
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post #17 of 30 (permalink) Old April 26th, 2011, 21:48
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http://www.safedrives.com/proddetail...od=3023&cat=81

I just got this one from charles at safe drives and i couldnt be happier predrilled for HANS comfortable and SA2010 which is perfect and in the 3 hours i had it on my head for the chump car race i didnt have any issues with fitment or discomfort it was comfortable and fit my head very well i dont think you would find a better helmet for the money and you couldnt find a better retailer then charles at safedrives by it from him!

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post #18 of 30 (permalink) Old April 26th, 2011, 22:05
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Thanks for all the info and recommendations. I found my racing suit on eBay and bought the car for $150, but I'll be getting a new helmet from safedrives as soon as I can afford it. That's one expense my wife won't mind either. Can't wait to start racing!
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post #19 of 30 (permalink) Old April 27th, 2011, 15:21
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Keep in mind that ANY helmet with a snell SA 2010 rating passes requirements for current safety standards for automotive racing... the SA rating is fire protection. So if you plan more for auto-x and it's much less likely you'll be trapped in a fiery ball of MR2... then you may not need the SA rating.

The difference in price may be the difference between a roll cage and none, a good certified seat/harness or not.... etc.... so there's more to safety than just the helmet. If you have X amount of dollars for safety then it's best to protect yourself completely within your budget rather than spend it all on one piece.
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post #20 of 30 (permalink) Old April 28th, 2011, 08:16
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You make a good point. The roll cage is costing us more than hoped since steel prices are through the roof, but we can't cut corners there nor do I want to. I'll reevaluate my budget once that is complete and go from there.
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