Author Topic: Helmet with face protection?  (Read 2341 times)

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Offline testsrus

Helmet with face protection?
« on: August 24, 2012, 03:10:54 pm »
Last month, a bad patch of road threw me off my road bike.
I was wearing a regular, normal (Specialized-brand) helmet. I realize now that road-bike helmets do a decent job of protecting the skull and brain, but do a lousy job of protecting the facial area. I suffered a broken jaw, broken nose, facial lacerations requiring stitches and two broken teeth.
As I've been recuperating, my attention is turning to my future in bicycling. Will I have one? Even though I realize the risk is miniscule, I can't afford a 'repeat' of what just happened to me...yet I now realize that we all ride somewhat at the mercy of those who take care of our roads and bridges.
Ideally, I would like to find a bicycle helmet with SOME level of face protection. I don't want to go "the whole hog" and get a full-face helmet targeted to BMX and Mountain Bike customers. I was thinking of a regular road-bike helmet, but with a simple grille around the mouth/nose area.
(Think about the helmets you see in the NFL for kickers or punters). I have not found anything along these lines. Does anyone have any ideas or sources for such a helmet?

Offline Pat Lamb

Re: Helmet with face protection?
« Reply #1 on: August 24, 2012, 03:46:38 pm »
I don't want to be too discouraging, but if there were such a helmet, I'd expect it to be hot as blue blazes.  Airflow around my head and neck is crucial to let me ride in warm weather, or to do any sort of serious climbing.

Offline Old Guy New Hobby

Re: Helmet with face protection?
« Reply #2 on: August 25, 2012, 04:39:12 am »
Road helmets don't prevent your head hitting the road. They work by placing a crush zone around your head to lessen the force at impact. A viable face mask would require a good amount of structure to keep your face from hitting the road. That structure isn't in a road helmet. You would end up with a football helmet-like device at the minimum.

Offline DaveB

Re: Helmet with face protection?
« Reply #3 on: August 25, 2012, 06:07:43 am »
Road helmets don't prevent your head hitting the road. They work by placing a crush zone around your head to lessen the force at impact. A viable face mask would require a good amount of structure to keep your face from hitting the road. That structure isn't in a road helmet. You would end up with a football helmet-like device at the minimum.
There are BMX/Downhill racing bicycle helmets that are full face and look rather like a scaled down and lighter motorcycle helmet.  Bell, among others, makes them.  The OP apparently knows about them but would rather not use one.  I don't think he has any other alternative as nothing like he is looking for is made as a bicycle helmet.

Offline indyfabz

Re: Helmet with face protection?
« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2012, 06:54:21 am »
Road helmets don't prevent your head hitting the road.

Huh? I crashed back in June when someone kicked up a stick and it lodged between the outside of my front wheel and inside of the fork. I went flying. My helmet hit the ground. My head did not. No broken skin whatsoever, which is nice because I take blood thinners.

Offline Old Guy New Hobby

Re: Helmet with face protection?
« Reply #5 on: August 28, 2012, 12:08:07 pm »
indyfabz - the next time I want to compare and contrast the helmet function of being a shock absorber and a face mask function of preventing the impact anywhere on the face, I'll try to use more precise words. ;D

I certainly sympathize with the  blood thinners. I was on blood thinners for 3 years following heart stints. As it happens, I dropped my bike today (riding too fast on a stretch of wet slippery curved road). The helmet was not involved. I got a minor case of road rash. When I was on blood thinners, it would have been blood everywhere, a hematoma, and no riding for 90 days while I recovered. Thank goodness the doctor took me off. Drive carefully out there, and best of luck.