Friday, 6 August 2010

Do You Know Your SHARP Rating?

To anyone who rides a motorbike, go here and have a quick looksee at the SHARP rating for your helmet, or the one you're looking at buying. Not all makes and models are up, but there's over 100 on there and I think you'll be shocked and a bit surprised to see how some of the more expencive, "Great" helmets test.

The reason I mention this is because there are helmets on sale that basically do NOTHING in impact except stop your head from actually exploding across the pavement, your brain still gets plenty shaken and fuck knows the damage that would do.

I decided I wanted a Shoei Multitec helmet, because it's nice looking and a flip front (Handy for those with glasses like myself) so I decided to check the ratings. Now at £370, I want it all singing, all dancing, cradling my head on impact like a host of angels and generally being fucking excellent. It scored three stars. Three. For £90, I can get a Carburg Trip, which scored 5 stars and is the first flip from to do so, and one of the only helmets I've looked at so far (Flip front or otherwise) to get Very Good as it's impact rating at all points, and 90% of impacts where the faceguard remained fully locked. Hmmmm... Which one seems better to you? By the way... Very Good is the highest rating for impact.

The Carburg may not have all the fancy removable bits and flashy doodads, but I don't give a toss. I'd spend a grand on a helmet if I knew it would keep me safe, flashy doodads or not. But why spend more than you have to on something when you can find a better product for less money?

The Carburg has some great reviews, some 50-50 customer reviews and a few people have complained about it not being very water tight, so I'm looking at other options, although I may get this one regardless. The new Carburg, Konda, hasn't been rated yet, but it's reviews are fantastic. I hope they do rate it, and soon, because of the two, just from reviews I'd pick the Konda.

Anyway. I hate the thought that there's so much variation in the helmets on sale, even different models by the same manufacturer. I think it should be a five star, all very good rating or you cant sell it. That way less people who don't think to look will buy a one or two star helmet and end up dead. Young, new riders especially go out with a budget and they want something that looks good, and that isn't always the safest helmet on sale... Although I guess the Trip proved that wrong.

Research is important. I'm a pain in the ass having to know everything all the time but sometimes it's a good thing. Like this.

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