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Thread: Best helmet for backcountry

  1. #41
    Gordon Misch's Avatar
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    Well said, 46. But in addition, there are other body parts that don't like getting poked, blunt-forced, or otherwise smacked. Not arguing, just thinkin' publicly - - - -
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  2. #42
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    Quote Originally Posted by 46 Cub View Post
    I kind-of wish Gallet made a "high cut" version of their helmet.
    Why 'high cut' ? weight?

    FWIW a Gallet LH050 with HSI ANR comes in (weight wise) about the same as all the roll your own, bicycle helmet with a headset in it varieties. Any of the blue tooth ANR's will add more weight, because there's another speaker (in addition to the two that are already in there for ANR) and there is more wire. Want lighter than the HSI ANR? try passive and foamies.... heck in something like a J3, I'd forego the foamies and just run the passive comms. You'd end up lighter than a DC 'deck helmet' for a real deal, save your skull in a wreck, quality helmet....

    I guess I just don't understand the placebo helmets? If it's worth wearing, it's probably worth wearing one that's actually going to work.


    Also FWIW, I have one such helmet ( a passive LH050) I wear it on occasion when my normal helmet has had too many days in a row on it, or needs MX. I am always shocked by just how light that thing is compared to my normal zulu driven unit. The old adage 'ounces make pounds' takes on a whole new meaning when those ounces are attached to a skull pulling G's...

    Take care, Rob

  3. #43

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    My one motorsports (with a motorcycle helmet) wreck while in a harness was in a Rzr. I hit a wall. The machine’s front end caved. My head accelerated into a tube. Helmet caved. My bell was rung but my head was fine. I did have a compression fracture at C5 so I must have hit hard. I don’t want to think what would have happened without a helmet. All this talk about the weight of a helmet in a sudden stop is presumptive. Show me some data that you’re better off in a plane wreck without a helmet than with. The helmet is there to protect your head from tubes above, in front, and beside your head. In some cases those tubes are in easy reach in common turbulence.

    I’ll weigh my Gallet before and after the A-20 install. I don’t expect any change. Power and bluetooth are in the power box on the cord, not the helmet. But I may be wrong and I have nothing to hide.
    Last edited by stewartb; 07-28-2018 at 07:14 AM.
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  4. #44

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    Quote Originally Posted by 46 Cub View Post
    Also, I've long held it in my mind, but the formula listed in there for deceleration - .0333 (mph x mph) divided by distance = G is worth noting. Basically it means if you are going 50mph and can stop in 9 feet, you will produce about 9G's, which is the design limit for objects installed in the aircraft, and also what the airbag harness is set to deploy at. So you might not even set that off.. So that means don't be a lawn dart, dont hit the base of big trees, or big rocks, or glacier crevasses, and you'd be fine. Aim for the Alders.
    My concern is with when all the soft stuff is not available. Maybe it's Gallet after all but it's hard to choose.
    Exactly. Deceleration forces are what kill and injure, so the most important part of an airplane crash is the last 50 milliseconds of it. If you fall off a low ladder from 5 feet and your head is the first thing to hit the concrete garage floor, people are going to be saying nice things about you in church 3 days later. If you fall from 5 feet and you break your wrist and forearm an instant before your head hits, you will have a pissed off wife, a nasty bruise on your forehead and an arm cast. In a plane crash, the seat belts connect your deceleration to the slower deformation of the vehicle's frame. As much as we love our planes, in a crash the slow destruction of the airframe is what saves us from internal injuries like a ruptured aorta or spinal damage. Head deceleration can be helped somewhat in some cases by a shoulder harness, but not reliably because the neck is so mobile and because the integrity of the cockpit can be lost, bringing things like rocks or compasses into contact with the head. Thus the absolute need for helmets.

    My other airplane is a Cirrus - it is made of composite and it breaks instead of deforming. The seat belts are therefore dangerous to Cirrus pilots in the first few years' models, because the harnesses themselves were what transmitted a near instantaneous deceleration to the pilots' bodies. Air bags were later incorporated into the seat belts themselves and the problem was at least ameliorated, but not eliminated.

    So- the take home messages - #1), wear a helmet. If everybody in the cub community did it, they would be cool. I actually like the "my helmet is better than your helmet" tone of this thread. To reiterate what 46 Cub said, lesson #2); if you have a chance to pick a crash site, pick one that will spread out the crash over those extra milliseconds. Look at your airframe as a survival tool that will be happily paid for by your insurance company.
    Last edited by Tennessee; 07-28-2018 at 07:20 AM.
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  5. #45
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob View Post
    Why 'high cut' ? weight?

    FWIW a Gallet LH050 with HSI ANR comes in (weight wise) about the same as all the roll your own, bicycle helmet with a headset in it varieties. Any of the blue tooth ANR's will add more weight, because there's another speaker (in addition to the two that are already in there for ANR) and there is more wire. Want lighter than the HSI ANR? try passive and foamies.... heck in something like a J3, I'd forego the foamies and just run the passive comms. You'd end up lighter than a DC 'deck helmet' for a real deal, save your skull in a wreck, quality helmet....

    I guess I just don't understand the placebo helmets? If it's worth wearing, it's probably worth wearing one that's actually going to work.


    Also FWIW, I have one such helmet ( a passive LH050) I wear it on occasion when my normal helmet has had too many days in a row on it, or needs MX. I am always shocked by just how light that thing is compared to my normal zulu driven unit. The old adage 'ounces make pounds' takes on a whole new meaning when those ounces are attached to a skull pulling G's...

    Take care, Rob
    i totally agree. If you’re going to wear a helmet, I’d wear a helmet that was actually designed for this purpose and environment. The Gallet helmets aren’t cheap, but frankly, they’re a lot cheaper than many of the things we buy for our airplanes.

    MTV
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  6. #46

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    Any helmet discussed here is better than none. Some are clearly better than others, too, but coming from a guy who doesn't wear one? Criticism is cheap talk.
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  7. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by stewartb View Post
    Any helmet discussed here is better than none. Some are clearly better than others, too, but coming from a guy who doesn't wear one? Criticism is cheap talk.
    Really??


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  8. #48

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    Really. I struggled with upgrading my Gallet vs buying a Team Wendy with Zulu comm. There are lots of choices to fit different priorities. I want to hear about them all.

  9. #49

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    Well I'm bummed. Didn't mean to criticize anyone or anything.
    I'm just looking for a helmet that I will wear, and that works.
    Maybe there is only one that will work. I'm not looking for a placebo. A friend here has a Gallet and I'll take a closer look.
    I have a J3 but my survey work is done in my Birddog. I've used Bose ANR since they made the first model and haven't had a reason to change. Most of survey work I do is telemetry and I need ANR to do that effectively. In fact I only started seriously looking for a helmet when I started seeing factory installed Bose ANR, including Gallet. I've had a Gentex for 25 years but only so I can pass my OAS special use checkrides. I still won't wear a helmet for my air-taxi because too many passengers would wonder why they don't have one.
    My thinking "high cut" was both for more air, and the idea it would be easier to reach up and move the earcups a bit. Even plain A20s get uncomfortable after 10hrs. I twist my head around a lot and look out the skylights at points in the trees and it appeared the larger expanse of the Gallet might interfere with that. But I gather Rob is a duster and I would imagine he twists his head around in hot conditions as much or more than anyone. And I know MTV has done a bunch of telemetry. I don't hear anything but Gallet from either and I'm listening. It's just that I also think 3M is a good company and if something new is offered which ostensibly is good enough for army type people to ride around in and jump out of helicopters it might be worth looking into.
    Thanks for your help
    Jose
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  10. #50
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    Stewart,

    My comment was intended to suggest that people should consider that helmets are life saving devices, and as such, they should be designed specifically for the sort of trauma that might be encountered in an aircraft accident. The sort of trauma involved in an airplane accident can be pretty devastating, and quite different than other activities. Hence, my recommendation to wear an aviation helmet IF you’re going to wear a helmet in an airplane.

    While I choose not to wear a helmet while flying these days, I’ve worn helmets in airplanes many thousands of hours in past. I have never felt that “normal” flight activities are sufficiently risky to warrant wearing a helmet, and even when I was working, I didn’t wear a helmet for low risk flying.

    Secondly, as someone else noted, wearing a helmet, but not offering one to passengers sends a message that I prefer not to convey. And fitting a variety of heads with quality helmets (or any helmets) gets expensive. But, if I were to go back to working airplanes at low level a lot, I’d have my noggin back in a Gallet.

    As to 46 Cubs point about telemetry, I found that the Gallet helmet with ANR worked better than most headsets for radio telemetry. The other thing I found is that, while helmets take a little getting used to, once you’ve worn them for a while I found that the helmet was actually a lot more comfortable on very long working flights, mostly because the clamping pressure is less, and both weight and clamping pressure are distributed more a good Aviation helmet. Another factor against the “deck type” lids is that you still have a lot of clamping pressure with them.

    But, if folks prefer to wear a deck helmet or a bike hemet, or no helmet at all, that is indeed their personal choice, and that’s just fine with me.

    MTV
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  11. #51

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    Thanks MTV! I thought he meant me.. As a published writer, I know you can take the heat!
    Thanks for the comments regarding comfort on long days - that's good input. I'm not afraid of the money I just want to get one I stand the best chance of actually using.

  12. #52

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    I've worn my Gallet for a little over 10 years. In that time it hasn't saved my life any more than a batting helmet would have. It has served two valuable purposes. I love love love the drop down sun visor. That alone is worth the trouble of wearing it. It has also protected my head from bumping tubes in turbulence and even when just stretching to see over the nose. That, too, has been valuable. Could less sophisticated and less expensive helmets have done the same? Yes, they could have. I have a collection of helmets from discussions like this. My DC K-10 will likely find a home in the back seat of the Wildcat, because I have it and it may as well get used. My ProTec? Not in my planes. I am interested in the cutaway helmets like Team Wendy's exfil SAR. It looks like it would be cooler in warm weather. I'm curious about the Peltor, too. I'm always looking for something better.

    The Wildcat has an oh **** handle on the center of the front spar carry through. It may go away but it's kind of handy for entry. No way will I fly this Cub without a helmet with that handle there. Not even for "low risk" flying.

    I hope nobody ever suffers an avoidable head injury. I'll leave you with that.
    Last edited by stewartb; 07-28-2018 at 03:46 PM.
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  13. #53
    BC12D-4-85's Avatar
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    Like MTV my employer (not the same one) required head protection for a few years during survey work. I used the David Clark/Navy deck crew unit as that's what was offered by purchasing. Turbulence in a C-185 would bang my head against the left upper door frame while looking out the bubble window so I guess it helped some. The rest of the time they were hot and prone to collecting a sweat, dirt, and bug repellant sheen. Eventually the stitching would dissolve and a new liner was required.

    The downside of that design was poor clamping and hearing protection but that was pre-ANR days. The left ear was prone to window noise it seemed.

    Finally my supervisor showed up wearing one that cost about a week of my wages back then and I threw mine away and retired.

    Gary

  14. #54

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    I promise I'll quit shaking this tree, but I looked at this again and realized Stewart might actually be defending the question of alternatives. Thank you. I didn't mean to stir up any controversy and appreciate every idea I've seen written here. I also appreciate all who have gone out on a limb to express their ideas. You folks have a great thing going here and I don't want to barge in and upset anyone. Thank you to every one of you who responded to my questions.
    Jose
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  15. #55
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    Hi SB,

    I really like reading your posts, because as a general rule, it occurs to me if your writing something it's because either you've experienced it, or have researched the facts / numbers....

    In light of that spirit I'll add some info / pics for anyone who might find them useful;

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    According to stamps.com an LH0250 Gallet with HSI ANR comes in at 2pounds 8 ounces +/-

    And the same make helmet with Lightspeeds bluetooth helmet zulu kit ; 5 ounces more

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    Both of these are set up with bail out plugs at the nape, so no 'battery / comm' boxes that don't rest on your head to add confusion to the mix. And although my passive helmet is at the shop, I know from past excursions down this road it is a full 8 ounces less than the HSI.

    You are correct in that the receiver for the bluetooth resides in the 'box' but BT still adds an additional speaker (I don't know why they can't plumb that sound through the comm speakers?) and wiring throughout. Does the extra few ounces bother me? Not in the least... But I imagine there is a limit to how far I'd go with that thought. Is it worth consideration for others?... hell I don't know why anyone would listen to anything I was babbling about

    As a side note, I would urge anyone contemplating a helmet to practice two rules I adhere to when flying in a helmet;

    1) use a bail out plug. If you think the cord is not going to keep you in the plane in an emergency when you forget to unplug... you are mostly right... it's just going to cost you a neck injury on the way out... and...
    2) Never put your helmet on until you'r fired up and the engine is happy. The first time you experience an engine fire or similar, you will get a chance to evaluate wether or not rule #1 made sense....


    Take care. Rob
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  16. #56

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    Good info, Rob. Thanks. You have more expeience with Gallet ANR than anyone I know and your guidance is appreciated.

    ANR has become my #1 helmet priority. It’ll be interesting to do the Bose upgrade. If it adds a few ounces I’m okay with that. My ears can’t continue with what I have now. Given that I have my Gallet the upgrade to Bose makes some sense, although I’ve never seen the components installed so I’m making a leap of faith. Tiger has warned me that I may not like the mic boom, but I can change that back to the Gallet wire boom with another $150 microphone. I’m less concerned about that than the earcup fit and performance. If I’m not satisfied with it I’ll likely switch to a cutaway helmet and Lightspeed’s cutaway helmet kit. Zulu ANR has set the bar. I don’t want to settle for less.
    Last edited by stewartb; 07-30-2018 at 10:29 AM.

  17. #57

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    Here's the Yueny helmet - $300 with ANR.

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  18. #58

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    CrashworthinessDesign.pdfCrashworthinessDesign.pdf


    Here's some interesting data on the tolerance of head impacts. References aircraft structures but could be reversed based on helmet materials.

  19. #59
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    Quote Originally Posted by Ed Ruebling View Post
    CrashworthinessDesign.pdfCrashworthinessDesign.pdf


    Here's some interesting data on the tolerance of head impacts. References aircraft structures but could be reversed based on helmet materials.
    Just about every helmet impact standard has been, in part, developed around the data found in the Wayne State Tolerance Curve mentioned in the article in your post.

    Voigt Hodgson of Wayne State was a well known aeronautical engineer turned biomechanical engineer who did what you suggest by developing one of the first commercial devices to test helmets impact attenuation efficiency. Dr. Hodgson's device uses a humanoid headform and biaxial accelerometers to calculate and record the severity index of an impact. Very cool stuff in the early 1970's.
    Voight Hodgson was a cool guy who fundamentally changed the way we think about testing helmets.
    Others have since built on Dr. Hodgson's work by developing simpler helmet impact test devices that give more consistent lab results.

    For small GA type crashes a helmet builder needs to understand the type of impact and severity of the impact that is most common in a crash. You don't want to be wearing flip flops in the artic or Bunny boots at Waikiki
    Last edited by Bill.Brine; 07-31-2018 at 07:41 AM.
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  20. #60

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    Follow up. The Bose kit is installed. My LH-050 went from 2.2# to 2.4#. Installation was simple. I’ve read internet comments about the A-20 ear cups being smaller. That’s true. Where my old ANR cups fit over my ears, the Bose fit on my ears. The new cups require less clamping pressure to seal well and there’s no interference from my glasses. Win win. My helmet sits a tiny bit further forward now and that’s a good thing. My drop-down visor clears my glasses better. The microphone boom is a little longer than it needs to be but it bends into position easily enough. The power box is in the primary cord so I have one less cable than before, so one less cable to manage in the pilot seat. ANR is improved. So far I’m happy.
    Last edited by stewartb; 08-03-2018 at 10:24 AM.
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  21. #61
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    I'll be interested to see how you like them compared to Zulu headsets. I love the Zulu helmet kit, but in light of the current inability to buy a kit and DIY, I will likely be looking to an alternative for the next one. HSI was good for a long time, but they kind of let things go stagnant in aging technology, and Lightspeed, who really leads the way in the current ANR/Bluetooth stuff seems to have turned the helmet stuff over to the resellers. Most of which have proven unreliable in delivery scheduling (a deal breaker for a guy who needs it when he needs it)

    Take care, Rob

  22. #62

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    Rob,

    After a couple of hours I like the upgrade a lot. Equal to my Zulu 2s? I can't say since I've never used Zulus in a Cub. I flew both airplanes yesterday (Zulus in the Cessna) and can't say either system is better than the other for ANR or clarity of voice comm. Both are far and away better than my old Gallet ANR. I'll spend a few minutes fitting the Bose ear cups. I need to build up velcro cones to capture the rounded Bose ear cups at the correct tilt and add a smidge more clamp pressure. The on the ear vs over the ear seals are very comfortable. The difference between on the ear and over the ear may be the detail that determines why guys prefer one or the other. In a helmet it's worth consideration. Over the ear ear cups determine where the shell sits on your head. I never really thought about that until now, and with the Bose my helmet sits better.

    SB
    Last edited by stewartb; 08-05-2018 at 08:43 PM.
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  23. #63

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    Best helmet for backcountry

    For Rob, and anyone else who’s curious. I grabbed a scrap of soft foam from Fine Line and cut some rings to fill the gap around the Bose earcups in the Gallet. The effort was worthwhile. Better fit and better performance.

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  24. #64

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    I tuck the backside of my ears into the Bose. I found it uncomfortable to place them over my ears. Maybe because I wear glasses. Thats part of the reason I like the idea of adjustable (high cut helmet) earcups. That and it looks like I could "lift" one away during warmup - like a chainsaw helmet. Don't know why that matters to me but it does. It happens the 3M/Peltor Ultralightweight (their name) helmets are not available until about December.... according to Tiger they are obligated to sell only to the military until the order is complete, and the military is buying all they can build right now. I plan to buy one when they are available. For specs.. it looks like the DOT spec for their (like the approved Gallet, etc) helmet mostly says hard outer shell and styrofoam inside of that. The rest relates to nape rolls, etc.. Very much like a motorcycle helmet after all.. In fact the DOT spec refers to ANZI spec whatever...
    For the 3M helmets, they address head deceleration and sharp object penetration. I didn't parse it out absolutely, but did read enough to figure that just because the DOT says it's ok for their survey pilots it doesn't necessarily mean that another helmet does not offer protection. It just means it doesn't have their exact nape roll, etc.. The only thing I don't like about the 3M helmet is the strap assy looks uncomfortable. One could argue much more secure but I don't relish the idea of spending Ks of hours with a strap on my chin.

  25. #65
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    I whimped out on finding value for money and bought a galette �� I thought that it would be the first and last helmet I would ever buy. Very quiet (Zulu). I think it has a very low profile compared to the others. (I sit high and bang my noggin a bit on the tubes) and it can't be all that bad considering the price $����������������������������������������But the plug on the helmet is not a quick release. I can see that to be a problem if shite hits the fan. Where do I get one of those ?
    Back Country O-375 wide body extended wing cub
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  26. #66

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    Years ago Merit Apparel sent me a short cord with a built-in volume control. With the Bose control box I no longer need the volume control but I still use it because it releases the headset plugs in any direction I pull, should I be in a hurry and forget to unplug at the jacks. Maybe not the perfect solution but it works for me.

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    https://m.aircraftspruce.com/catalog...pilotUSA43.php


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    Last edited by stewartb; 09-24-2018 at 09:53 AM.
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  27. #67
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    That would work. Simple and no cutting the cord to modify.
    Back Country O-375 wide body extended wing cub

  28. #68
    Rob's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cgoldy View Post
    I whimped out on finding value for money and bought a galette 😮 I thought that it would be the first and last helmet I would ever buy. Very quiet (Zulu). I think it has a very low profile compared to the others. (I sit high and bang my noggin a bit on the tubes) and it can't be all that bad considering the price $😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮😮But the plug on the helmet is not a quick release. I can see that to be a problem if shite hits the fan. Where do I get one of those ?
    A 'Bail out plug' is a real consideration. If you wreck bad enough to need a helmet, there is a good chance your going to want to vacate in a hurry. Ask anyone who has flipped one over (not usually a super big deal) and they have almost always unlatched the seat belt before they figured out how to not fall on their heads (I did) and then they most likely ran right across the bottom of their soft piper ribs (have done that too).

    My point is, if you think something like fire is a possibility , you're going to come out of that plane like a shot, and as tiny as the comm cord appears, it is still going to wrench your neck. Headsets will get yanked off, a proper helmet won't.

    If you are getting a new helmet built up the added cost of a bailout plug is minimal.

    Stewarts solution is sweet and simple, and best part is that it stays with the plane through whatever helmet or headset you care to wear that day. I like comm set ups that allow me the freedom to plug what ever I want into them.

    Take care, Rob

  29. #69
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    I remember getting out of a OH-58A on the run and almost going over backwards when the cord came tight,lol just like the cartoon dog hitting the end of the chain.
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  30. #70

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    Some interesting reading re: aviation helmets. I found the discussion of fixed wing vs helicopter helmets to be interesting. To paraphrase, heli helmets are more protective because heli crews ride all the way down to the impact while fixed wing guys eject.

    http://www.usaarl.army.mil/TechReports/93-2.PDF

    https://www.doi.gov/sites/doi.gov/fi...rd_rev_1.0.pdf
    Last edited by stewartb; 09-25-2018 at 10:01 AM.
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  31. #71

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    Just like football. Don't lead with your head.

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  33. #73
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    I have been reading this thread with great interest as well as several others related to helmets.

    I have made one from a Kayaker helmet and it was a lot of work. Plus I have worn and owned a couple others. I jump in all sorts of planes doing BFRs and sometimes certain aircraft will not let me fit my head inside while wearing a helmet. Two that come to mind are Kit Foxs and the RANS S7 back-seat. In both cases my head and regular headset touch the ceiling or tubing. Which stinks because those are the planes in which I tend to whack my noggin around. But if I wear my thick padded helmet I have to fly around with my head sideways.

    The disconnect jacks near the helmet are a super-good idea. I had those in my military time. Back around 15-16 years ago I was thrown through the door of a C-170B during a crash and my neck has never been the same after my headset cord yanked the crap out of my head.
    On floats it would be nice for jumping out while docking...

    I would wear a helmet more often if I did not have clients inside the plane who all want a custom fitted helmet in their size as well. I cannot afford 9 more helmets ( 3 in small medium and large each)_

    Even now I often get 3 people bitching about my float vest being full of survival gear while all they get are the suspender type float vests. ( fly-fishing folks who have rods and reels that cost more than my first car. )

    When you have nervous complainers, wait until you are over an icefield and then ask one of them to hand you the only helmet in the plane and start strapping it to your head without answering any questions.
    Likes cubdriver2, cubpilot2 liked this post

  34. #74
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    Not juts helmets, but now Aviation Shoes..... What the heck....??

    https://liftaviationusa.com/collections

  35. #75
    cubdriver2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Clark View Post
    Not juts helmets, but now Aviation Shoes..... What the heck....??

    https://liftaviationusa.com/collections
    Too funny, some of the J3 guys are buying $200 Simpson racing shoes to better feel the rudder pedals. Most Cub footwear over the years has been bought in a farm feed store or a tackle shop.

    Glenn
    "Optimism is going after Moby Dick in a rowboat and taking the tartar sauce with you!"
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  36. #76
    Alex Clark's Avatar
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    I learned Super Cub flying in Bunny Boots. (Winter)
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  37. #77

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Clark View Post
    Not juts helmets, but now Aviation Shoes..... What the heck....??

    https://liftaviationusa.com/collections
    What, no custom N Number embroidering, the horror!
    Remember, These are the Good old Days!
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  38. #78
    cubpilot2's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Clark View Post
    Not juts helmets, but now Aviation Shoes..... What the heck....??

    https://liftaviationusa.com/collections
    My Aviation shoes are made by LaCross.

    https://www.mackspw.com/LaCrosse-Big...CABEgKz0vD_BwE
    Ed
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  39. #79
    spinner2's Avatar
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    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	508F7A42-9C01-4D96-8669-A8036D4F5495.jpeg 
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ID:	39087

    Similar setup to Stewart’s.
    "Fast is fine, but accuracy is everything." Wyatt Earp

  40. #80

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alex Clark View Post
    Not juts helmets, but now Aviation Shoes..... What the heck....??

    https://liftaviationusa.com/collections
    Hmmm... I guess I've been overdoing it for my winter flights...
    Likes TurboBeaver liked this post

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