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Helmet rules?

Old 12-16-02, 12:34 PM
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Helmet rules?

I am planning on asking my mom to get me a helmet for christmas. The only car parts my parents are willing to get me are "safety" items. So I figure a helmet would be a nice x-mas gift.

What type of rating do you need for auto-x and open tracking? I found that most helmets have the "snell 2000" rating; is this OK? And are open faced helmet allowed? Are open faced helmets recommended by any of the people here? I like the idea of an open face due to increased visibility, but I would like to hear an argument for the closed face.

Here is a pic of the one I was thinking about. It's $200 from summit. Anybody have any thoughts on it? I'm open to all ideas and criticism.


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Old 12-16-02, 01:07 PM
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On track, I've been hit with pieces of rubber and once been sprayed with rocks by cars I'm passing. Fortunately only the rubber hit my helmet (came in thru the side window) but I can't imagine getting hit by a small stone thrown up by another car in the face.

but many people use open face helmets, and even I would (since before I started losing weight I had trouble breathing with my closed face helmet with the visor down), but there are some minor risks in volved. In a bad accident, especially without harnesses, your head may hit the steering wheel, and a closed face is going to protect you instead of breaking your jaw..

Visibility with my Bell M2 is decent, but I have to turn my head if the car is side by side to see them.

PaulC
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Old 12-16-02, 01:19 PM
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The Simpson LX and the Bell Mag4 are very popular open face helmets down here. People like the them for autocross because of the visibility, like you said, but also because they are cooler than a closed face helmet. If you are racing in PA then temperature probably won't be a problem. I've measured surface temperatures with a tire pyrometer at 140 degrees in the summer in Texas.
That being said, I have a closed face helmet because it's the same one I would use for my motorcycle (if it ran), and I also run an open wheel formula car with the University. And you can get a face full of debris every time you turn the wheels in that thing.
But I've been considering upgrading to the same models I mentioned above for when I autocross the WRX. Temperature will be a big factor once my F-Prepared FC is done too.
Good luck

Last edited by Travis R; 12-16-02 at 01:21 PM.
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Old 12-16-02, 02:34 PM
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Samps,

Snell 2000 will get you on any of the local tracks or auto-X 's. Anything less than 2000 will exclude you from SCCA events. However, you will sdtill be eligable for North Hills Sports Car auto-X's.

Tom
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Old 12-16-02, 02:42 PM
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i use a motocross helmet. wanted something full faced but with the ability to talk and still have a wide visibility range. i use the arai vx.
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Old 12-16-02, 03:32 PM
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Thanks guys! Maybe I'll just drive up to summit and take a closer look at them. I'm really concerned with visibility for now. I probably won't see any wheel to wheel action for a few years, and by that time I will need a new helmet anyways. I'm looking at predominantly auto-x with maybe two or three open track days just to get wet behind the ears.

And Tom; I'm planning on going to "Beaverun" to auto-x, but I might try out the North Hills track also. I live in Hopewell so it's just about the same distance either way. And since I work in the city, I hate to drive here on the weekends. But if you see some nut in a dark blue vert knocking over cones; that's me!
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Old 12-16-02, 04:31 PM
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i race shifter karts and when u drive around under caution i use to drive wit my shield up gettin hit wit stones hurts i say get a fullface way more safe
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Old 12-17-02, 06:42 AM
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Samps,

Sounds good, look for me in my montego blue third gen. 27 AP is my number and class. If you need any help or have any questions don't hesitate to ask. I have not seen you at any of the past events so I am assuming that you have not auto-x in the past. If that is the case, the North Hills Sports Car Club has an auto-x school for novices in March. I would recommend attending, I may be there instructing depending on my schedule.

Tom
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Old 12-17-02, 07:25 AM
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Thanks Tom! If you are instructing I will definitely attend. I have no prior racing or track experience of any kind. I am a full blown rookie, but you got to start somewhere; right! If you have any more info on that beginners school, that would be great. I could probably learn more in one day with someone teaching me than in a whole year on my own.
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Old 12-17-02, 08:15 AM
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Samps,

Get a copy of Secrets of Solo Racing by Henry Watts. No cool photos - just cool information. Even though this book was written over a decade ago, the information is timeless. I read this book twice a year, once at the beginning of the season and halfway through the season. In addition, check the:
http://www.fyi.net/~nhscc/when.htm
For the updated 2003 schedule that will include the drivers school.

Tom
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Old 12-17-02, 11:20 AM
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Get the closed face Bell M3. Your head and face will thank you
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Old 12-17-02, 12:16 PM
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http://www.soloracer.com/bellm3.html

$450!!!!! Good lord that's a lot of money!
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Old 12-17-02, 01:39 PM
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How much are dentures?



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Old 12-17-02, 02:10 PM
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lol; I already have fake front teeth, but they are porcelain and cost about $700 each. I was in a strange skate board accident at a young age.

Why would you get the Bell M3 over say a less expensive closed face from summit? What is better about the M3? I'm gonna need to hear a pretty good reason to spend twice as much money. I've bought my fair share of snake oil and there aint no more room on my shelve for any more.

Thanks for the input! No matter how much people whine and fight on this forum it is still a very valuable resource.

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Old 12-17-02, 03:35 PM
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I don't know in your case. I have the older M2 anyway.

However, for ME, it was comfort. I also got the Simpson Voyager, and I couldn't breathe! It was like someone had their hand over my mouth, even with all the vents open, if the visor was down. It was also the biggest they had, and it was very tight on my head (skull cap tight).. The M2, despite being listed 1/4" smaller than the 8" voyager, was actually bigger inside, more room, and I can still breathe with the visor down.

Buy the best helmet you can afford, try them on, find one that fits you well and is comfortable.. Trying to reattach your ears after putting your helmet on is never a good thing

PaulC
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Old 12-17-02, 07:45 PM
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Samps,

My advise FWIT, since you are considering doing some track events, get a helmet that carries an SA2000 rating. I have owned the Simpson Voyager, Bell SR PRO, Bieffe F1, and now am using a Bieffe Predator. It is very reasonably priced for a SA rated, lightweight, composite helmet. I have found it to be quite comfortable. Summit sells them for $319.

db
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Old 12-18-02, 07:27 AM
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Thanks Dave! I've thought about that one too. The reason I am pushing Summit so much is the location. I live close enough to summit that I can drive up there and see the goods in person. And any time you deal with clothes, gloves, shoes, or a helmet it's nice to go in person. What is the difference between the "SA 2000" and "snell 2000" I thought it was just two different ways of saying the same thing?
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Old 12-18-02, 09:03 AM
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SA is the indication for "Special Application" which means it has a Nomex or some other fireproof liner. M is the indicator of a helmet for Motorcycle. The liner is NOT fireproof. Snell 2000 could be either of these two. The SA helmets are more expensive than the M helmets. I would recommend you get the SA rated helmet because not only of the protection, but also so you don't have to buy a new helmet should you get to the point of driving in events that require it.

db
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Old 12-18-02, 10:45 AM
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"SA" helmets also undergo more rigorus testing (ie Multiple Impacts as opposed to a Single Impact) than helmets with an "M" rating. For most brands if you compare their SA helmets to the equivlent M helmet, the SA one will be significantly heavier. Simpson's AUTO helments all use the same shells and only the LINER differs between the SA and M rated versions. an SA helmet is the preferred alterative for TRACK events where a multiple rollover w/ fire accident is a distinct possibility. ALL of BELL's AUTO helmets are SA rated.

Last edited by maxpesce; 12-18-02 at 10:47 AM.
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Old 12-18-02, 08:13 PM
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Bell M3 has the Tri-Weave (carbon kevlar fiber) helmet shell construction. The helmet shell is very light but STRONG. The inside of a Bell is MUCH more comfortable. The Simpson had much less padding inside for a real primitive feeling helmet.

I'm with silkworm. My first helmet was the Simpson Voyager. I hated the fit (and still do), and it's heavy compared with my new Bell M3. The new Bell M3 is Snell SA2000, and the Simpson is a Snell M95.

As a BMW CCA and PCA drivers ed instructor, the helmet requirement for both car clubs is more stringent than in autocrossing. So now, I use the Simpson for solo 2, and the Bell for track driving.

FWIW the Simpson has held up well for five years. The stench in the Simpson got so bad, I washed the inside with mild dish detergent, rinsed thoroughly and air dried for a week. The smell is much better, and I don't mind wearing it for autocrossing

I now wear a helmet balaclava to keep the new Bell M3 from getting too "funky"

BTW, this is very superficial IMO, but the Bell M3 "looks" better on than the Simpson Voyager.
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Old 12-19-02, 07:36 AM
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Thanks SleepR1! You might have sold me on the M3.
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Old 12-19-02, 11:45 AM
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Originally posted by Tom Delegram
Samps,
Anything less than 2000 will exclude you from SCCA events.

Tom
BS>>>>>>>>>> Please read your rule book.



BTW Samps, I have the simpson helmet you were originally looking at. I like it alot, but I only run SOLO II nad SOLO I. Im going to keep using it for road racing, but with a proper head restraint device and a fireproof bacalva. It's inexpensive and quite adequate for SOLO.
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Old 12-19-02, 01:05 PM
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Carl,

Despite your charming response above, the Steel Cities Region requires a minimum rating of Snell 2000. If you feel the need to further argue this, please contact Vern Anderson the chair of the Solo II committee. You can reach Vern at the following numbers: (412) 429-1041 Home or (412) 716-3126 Cell. Fortunately or unfortunately, that is our regional rules. Since Samps is planning to run the Steel Cities region, I think it would be best that he purchase a Snell 2000 or higher rated helmet.

Thanks,
Tom
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Old 12-19-02, 01:32 PM
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No need to argue guys. I appreciate all of the help and I'm sure people have different opinions on this topic. It's understandable that different helmets will work better in different applications, and although I started this thread, it's nice to get a wide variety of responses that maybe lend more towards what others might need. All of the information here should let me or any other forum member choose the right helmet for their given need. Once again, thanks for all help!
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Old 12-20-02, 11:45 AM
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Tom I was referring to the national rules. I undersatand what you meant now, but you Stated that ALL SCCA events required SA200. I wasnt trying to flame you, although admittedly it did look that way, sorry. The trouble on this board is people posting erroneous info. That upsets me. Please be more accurate with your info. Although you were posting for the benefit of samps, other people will use the info posted here ,and they will be mislead by what you posted. We cool now Tom?

Good luck Samps!
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