The Anatomy of a Motorcycle Helmet
The Anatomy of a Motorcycle Helmet – Before, we can only see motorcycles used in races and any profession or activity that requires the use of motorcycles (e.g. policemen). But nowadays, we can see that most people are into having bikes or motorcycles. Almost all commuters are motorcycle drivers that sometimes dominate the streets and main highways.
When driving any vehicle, similar to motorcycles, safety should be kept in mind because accidents can happen anytime. As a responsible motorcycle owner, one should always wear a helmet to give protection to the head, as it is one of the most fragile parts of a human body.
Helmets come in different forms, shapes and sizes for different purposes and applications. What is a motorcycle helmet made of? How does each part work in order to protect our heads from sudden impact? We ll know more about that on the next paragraphs.
Parts of a Motorcycle Helmet
The shell is the outermost layer of the helmet. This part is the one that receives the most impact during accidents. The shell and its construction plays a vital role in the helmets shape, weight and price. A helmets shell can be made out in any of these materials:
The fiberglass shell is most of the time a composite material like kevlar, organic fibers, and aramids. This type of shell is usually hard and long-lasting. This is also stronger, much lighter, and much more rigid, however, costly.
Because of its added strength and rigidity, shells made up of this material can withstand a much stronger impact speed. However, the extra stiffness won’t disperse that much of energy leaving most of the work to the EPS liners.
This material is found to be more effective in noise reduction than that of polycarbonate, so a quieter helmet with this material is expected.
Polycarbonate is injection-moulded reinforced plastic. This is considered as the staple shell material of a budget-friendly helmet. Among the three materials, this is the heaviest and the most flexible.
This means that this material best performs in lower speed impacts, as the energy is partially dispersed by the shell flexion alone.
Polycarbonate has to be moulded thick since it has a lower tensile strength. Thus, it gives the largest shell size among the three materials.
Carbon fiber helmets, similar to its fiberglass counterpart, are usually made up of various materials to add more strength.
Among the three materials, carbon fiber is the lightest and most rigid, making helmets made of carbon fiber ideal for high-speed impacts but of low weight.
Usually, carbon fiber helmets are noisier than the fiberglass ones, and not to mention, more expensive.
The added strength that carbon fiber offers will provide greater safety but only on high speeds. However, for casual street rides, these helmets can reduce neck strain since its lightweight. Helmets of this material are usually found in high-end race helmets.
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EPS or Expanded Polystyrene is a thick, high-density foam that composes the second part of a helmet. The EPS is fitted on the interior of the shell. As important as all the other helmet parts, it is made to absorb different types of shocks, minor or major. It also provides a cushion to the head and adds better protection from impact.
As the shell and EPS liner protects the head from impacts, the comfort liner is the one responsible for making sure that the helmet fits comfortably in your head. Comfort liners are made of materials that are anti-bacterial and can absorb sweat.
Moreover, most of the comfort linings found in motorcycle helmets are detachable, so one can freely wash and clean whenever necessary. Some helmets also come with moisture-wicking liners that aid in keeping the helmet cool, dry and clean.
Cheek pads are considered to be part of the comfort liners since they are composed of the same materials. Cheeks pads keep the helmet from moving in case of a front or side impact. These pads also add comfort to the riders while wearing a helmet.
Vents that are installed in most helmets helps maintain good airflow inside the helmet during rides. These are naturally found on the chin bar area, just right above the brow and at the back of the helmet.
These are the two types of vents commonly found in helmets:
- Forward Facing Vents – aids in bringing in air to the helmet.
- Rear Facing or Exhaust Vents – aids in taking out the hot air inside the helmet.
Some high-end helmets have adjustable vents that can be closed or opened depending on the riders preference.
The visor is the movable (and sometimes detachable) shield that protects the front face and eyes of a rider. It can be slid up or down to prevent dust and sunlight from blocking the drivers view. Some helmets can come with tinted visors to protect the eyes from ultraviolet rays.
Latest helmets are rigged with visors that have an anti-fogging technology so that motorcyclists will have the freedom to ride in the fog or while raining without affecting their visibility.
The best visors out there are the one made out of polycarbonate material that neither break nor shatter during impact.
Retention or Closure System
The retention or closure system involves the chin strap to keep the helmet in place and intact while riding. Usually, the type of closure system found in helmets is the D ring system, where the chin strap is wrapped around two D-rings.
I hope that reading this article of what makes up a helmet may be helpful for you in choosing which helmet to buy!
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The helmets in our selection are well-known all for their excellent build, design, safety and enhanced comfort. Our store only provides the best for the whole riding community. If you want to see what we have, just go to our Shop and find the best helmet of your choice.