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Discussion Starter #1

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I've looked at Helite vests (both, IIRC). There are two reasons I didn't get one:
1. The reaction time is actually quite long. You have to first depart from the bike to trigger the lanyard and then its till takes 100ms to inflate. If you're crashing at 72 kph, you'll cover 2 meters in that time - hope there's nothing in your way... See the video: https://youtu.be/JgzxxlcbbFI?t=11 - the dummy's head hits the bonnet long before the vest has time to inflate. And, as one commenter notices, even during the landing (after the neck's already been broken) feet and butt contact the ground first. The vest does absolutely nothing. Now there are many scenarios where it /would/ help, so I was still considering getting one, but...
2. ...it'll block airflow and it'll get hot in the summer, I've asked people who owned it. You get sweaty and uncomfortable, it's not something you forget you have on (like protectors in a jacket). It actually covers all vents (and pockets!) on my jacket, so it's a major hindrance. A piece of gear left at home won't save me, so I only invest in stuff I know I'll wear, and I figured the cost-benefit doesn't appeal to me.

I'm still anxiously waiting for better-designed airbags to become mainstream though, the technology has a lot of promise! I just think Helite is not there yet. Alpinestars and Dainese seem to be working on their systems...
 

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Thanks _Big_Mac.

I know they do have their limitations and the heat aspect does worry me, but I think it would be ok 90% of the year her in BC Canada. I might get an all mesh jacket for the other 10%.

The few reports (3 I have found so far) are encouraging and I know my aging body doesn't bounce as well as a younger one.

You are so right. It won't do any good if left at home.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Bump to thread - anybody else look at these?

Does anybody use one?
 

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I've been looking at the Helite system for a few months now, wondering whether to buy one or not. The video that _Big_Mac_ posted above puts me off a little too. On the other hand, there are other crashes where it would deploy more effectively, and I was very impressed with videos of how it stabilizes the neck once deployed. I think Revzilla carries Helite stuff now, by the way.

The lack of ventilation bothers me too. I ride in Arizona and wear the same well-ventilated jacket year-round (FirstGear Jaunt). The Helite vest would definitely block all the jacket vents and raise the temperature to above my melting point. I wonder whether the Helite jacket is any better in that regard.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I've been looking at the Helite system for a few months now, wondering whether to buy one or not. The video that _Big_Mac_ posted above puts me off a little too. On the other hand, there are other crashes where it would deploy more effectively, and I was very impressed with videos of how it stabilizes the neck once deployed. I think Revzilla carries Helite stuff now, by the way.

The lack of ventilation bothers me too. I ride in Arizona and wear the same well-ventilated jacket year-round (FirstGear Jaunt). The Helite vest would definitely block all the jacket vents and raise the temperature to above my melting point. I wonder whether the Helite jacket is any better in that regard.
I got mine just before Xmas and have only riden in it once (at 4C / 40F) with all my gear and heated gloves so can't comment on ventilation.

3 of us bought them at the same time and got a good deal from the Canadian distributor. We paid the equivalent of $US630 (including 12% Canadian taxes) for the XL-L HiViz compared to $US649 on Revzilla, and we bought it from a local company with local support.
 

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I'm interested, too. I laid down my Harley (it's pretty much totaled) over three months ago, and (among other injuries) I now have 8 screws, 2 rods, and a bracket in my back. They tell me if I have another wreck, I will undoubtedly be paralyzed, as the screws will cut through my spinal cord. Of course, I still have my Versys :) Whaddya think, guys? should I try one of these? And don't tell me to 1) never ride again, or 2) get a trike. Those are not options.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hi chrisfla1

If you are staying on 2 wheels, I would definitely get one - particularly the Turtle which has a hard back plate.

That is what I have.
 

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The Turtle? Is it unbearably hot in the summer? Just curious, since I live in FL.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
The Turtle? Is it unbearably hot in the summer? Just curious, since I live in FL.
Hi Chris

I have only had mine since December, and I am in Canada.

I was out riding today in 40F / 4C so can't tell you about heat.

You don't wear it tight against the body (to allow it to inflate) so you should get some air circulation.

Cheers

PS The photo has a frozen lake to the left.
 

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