Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

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pete75
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby pete75 » 5 May 2017, 10:51am

Lance Dopestrong wrote:That's the point - there isn't any.

They test helmets and conclude that A and B perform better than Y and Z, but there's nothing to prove that any of them work.

Indeed, not one single manufacturer claims their cycle helmets can or will prevent injury. That's as far as I'll go in that one as this forum is not the place. If you wish to discuss that aspect any further please feel free to nip over to the helmet forum.

BTW, its customary to say 'please' when requesting something of someone.


Oh sorry didn't realise you were such a delicate flower. Your picture gives the opposite impression.



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"When the testing is complete, SHARP compares the results with real-world injury data from the COST 327 study (the most thorough investigation of motorcycle crashes conducted in Europe). This comparison leads to the final SHARP star rating."

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pjclinch
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby pjclinch » 5 May 2017, 10:54am

Revolution wrote:Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?


I'm not a keen student of economics but I strongly suspect that anyone in a business situation selecting a price will aim to choose one that between profit per item and units shifted gives them the best bottom line. Note how Bolle are happy to sell you very similar glasses for workwear safety for about £7, or for fashion for about £70. If you're a keen roadie willing to get whatever Peter Sagan or whoever is given to wear you'll be paying a premium, simply because the manufacturer can get away with charging one. Lidl and Aldi can't get away with premium prices, so they aim to shift a lot at low prices. And so on.

Revolution wrote:I can't imagine that the production costs can be that much more, are the expensive ones safer?
If anyone can point me to any info on this I'd be grateful.


As has been noted, safety standards can be checked by looking at the standard on the item itself. EN1078 is the basic, Snell is rather better, neither are designed to save lives which is why the manufacturers themselves make no such claims: they'd be sued to hell and back. What you tend to get in a more expensive helmet, aside from a target audience of people willing to spend more, is lighter and better ventilated at the same strength. Why not make them safer? Because what organisations demand is it meets "a current standard", and delivering safety above that means heavier and less ventilated at any given cost, and those aren't beneficial for cycling.

Also note that to meet the standard it's built to a helmet should be correctly fitted. Modern ones have reasonably adjustable cradles but you'll get the most effective system with a snug fit, so for both comfort and effectiveness a size/shape close to your particular head is a Good Thing. Try a few on and see how you find the fit.

Me, I don't bother on the roads, I do bother if I'm coaching (the rules require it) or doing technical off-road pushing myself, to ward off low tree branches as much as anything else. I don't do that much so I use an Aldi helmet that was under a tenner. If I was expecting to come off a lot I'd probably get a Specialized as they fit me quite well (comfier than the Aldi), are available at non-silly prices and IIRC conform to the higher Snell standard, but for bashing the odd branch out of the way or ticking a box the Aldi one is fine. I coach at a junior CC and the Aldo ones are the most popular helmets amongst the coaches.

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pjclinch
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby pjclinch » 5 May 2017, 10:57am

meic wrote:As a helmet's job is to protect, how can analysis or justification of its cost variation be separated from its effectiveness.


That's a remarkably singular view of what a helmet is for.
They can be for fashion purposes ("I look just like [insert favourite pro here]"), are often for box-ticking purposes, often for confidence giving, for example.

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mjr
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby mjr » 5 May 2017, 1:03pm

pjclinch wrote:They can be for fashion purposes ("I look just like [insert favourite pro here]"), are often for box-ticking purposes, often for confidence giving, for example.

Fashion purposes fail (see below for how pro-imitators actually look - you ain't got the physique for it), why should we submit to the tickboxes of bike-hating bureaucrats and doesn't confidence-giving just mean risk compensation?
Image Attachments
helmet_rude.jpg
How helmet users look when they try to imitate pros
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All the above is CC-By-SA and no other implied copyright license to Cycle magazine.

Keezx
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby Keezx » 5 May 2017, 6:25pm

pjclinch wrote:
meic wrote:As a helmet's job is to protect, how can analysis or justification of its cost variation be separated from its effectiveness.


That's a remarkably singular view of what a helmet is for.
They can be for fashion purposes ("I look just like [insert favourite pro here]"), are often for box-ticking purposes, often for confidence giving, for example.

Pete.


Bike helmets are the most overpriced bike accessoires , just a piece of foam with plasic shiny cover and nylon straps.
Average fabrication cost certainly not over 3,76 €, count the huge profits. :(

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Cunobelin
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby Cunobelin » 5 May 2017, 7:33pm

Keezx wrote:
pjclinch wrote:
meic wrote:As a helmet's job is to protect, how can analysis or justification of its cost variation be separated from its effectiveness.


That's a remarkably singular view of what a helmet is for.
They can be for fashion purposes ("I look just like [insert favourite pro here]"), are often for box-ticking purposes, often for confidence giving, for example.

Pete.


Bike helmets are the most overpriced bike accessoires , just a piece of foam with plasic shiny cover and nylon straps.
Average fabrication cost certainly not over 3,76 €, count the huge profits. :(



... and the sad thing is that there is a whole pro-helmet brigade willing to lie, make unevidenced claims and use emotional blackmail that promotes this

Anyone who dares to challenge this in the interests of a balanced and evidenced debate is dismissed as "very very silly" and anti-helmet

Dave W
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby Dave W » 10 May 2017, 12:13pm

You can't beat a good helmet debate can you?
Here's one my mate hit the tarmac with, a cheap Aldi one I believe. Apparently the helmet caused the accident, did not protect his head, was totally useless, he'd have been better off without it or just wearing a buff and he should have learn't to change his body position before losing conciousness. I put all these points to him but he failed to agree. What a plonker!
Aldi Helmet.jpg

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mjr
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby mjr » 10 May 2017, 12:18pm

Dave W wrote:Here's one my mate hit the tarmac with, a cheap Aldi one I believe. Apparently the helmet caused the accident, did not protect his head, was totally useless, he'd have been better off without it or just wearing a buff and he should have learn't to change his body position before losing conciousness. I put all these points to him but he failed to agree. What a plonker!


Congratulations! I suspect you've achieved all three elements of Cunobelin's preduction, plus being aggressive and sarcastic:
Cunobelin wrote:... and the sad thing is that there is a whole pro-helmet brigade willing to lie, make unevidenced claims and use emotional blackmail that promotes this
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Lance Dopestrong
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby Lance Dopestrong » 10 May 2017, 12:19pm

:idea: Where the evidence that your friend is correct, or indeed incorrect?

Again, people resort to derision and emotion to support their own view in the absence of fact and evidence.
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Dave W
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby Dave W » 10 May 2017, 1:42pm

I'll ask him. He's a total idiot mind, I caught him wearing another one only last week. You'd think he'd learn. I suppose if he'd bought an expensive one in the first place at least he'd get it replaced. He could have flogged it on to another unsuspecting twerp then and pocketed the money.

Dave W
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby Dave W » 10 May 2017, 4:00pm

Which brings us back to why some are more expensive than others - some offer a replacement scheme in the case of an accident. Nothing's free so you're most likely paying towards your replacement helmet anyway.

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RickH
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby RickH » 10 May 2017, 10:38pm

Dave W wrote:You can't beat a good helmet debate can you?
Here's one my mate hit the tarmac with, a cheap Aldi one I believe. Apparently the helmet caused the accident, did not protect his head, was totally useless, he'd have been better off without it or just wearing a buff and he should have learn't to change his body position before losing conciousness. I put all these points to him but he failed to agree. What a plonker!Aldi Helmet.jpg

It looks bad but...

  • The helmet hasn't disintegrated so any blood is from injury to areas not covered by the helmet.
  • I can't see it all in detail but the parts of the EPS I can see do not appear to have been compressed so there doesn't seem to be significant impact.
  • Lacerations to the face/scalp can look bad & bleed profusely but are often fairly superficial. (My son plays field hockey so I've seen some of the results of ball/face impacts & the lack of long term injury apart from, sometimes, minor scars.)
  • The helmet may have prevented some minor (& messy) injury in this instance but part of the debate is whether they can do anything more and whether the likelihood of worse injury is increased on a population level.
    (Wearing a stab/ bulletproof vest to go shopping in Manchester may prevent injury if I am attacked - except for one that is only made to deflect a blunt penknife to save weight/cost/etc. - but the likelihood of being attacked is small and encouragement for people to use them as a matter of course would almost certainly impact adversely on numbers going shopping in the city.)
If you are going to wear a helmet then an Aldi one isn't likely to be better/worse than most.

For my part, I now only wear one if I participate in an activity where it is compulsory (or, sometimes, piloting the tandem with a child stoker where helmets are compulsory for participating children & my wearing one circumvents the "why do I have to wear one when you aren't? arguments) & I decide that wearing one is less onerous than not participating.

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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby Dave W » 11 May 2017, 8:02am

That's just it you see, everyone looks at the picture and says It wasn't bad. Correct the blood didn't come through the helmet it was from lying in a pool unconcious for nearly five minutes. I was there, I witnessed it first hand, nobody from this forum was there and yet they feel it's their right to say exactly what happened and that the helmet caused the crash (it didn't) the helmet didn't protect him (it did) and was totally useless (it wasn't) it was his fault for riding too fast (possibly) and there's no evidence helmets protect you at all (i'd ask him that).
Possibly a more expensive helmet might have crumpled more and taken more energy away from the impact, I don't know. The blow was plenty hard enough to render him unconscious so he continued his journey on his face.I don't think even coming on this forum would convince him to leave his helmet at home.
I think many buy a more expensive helmet hoping for a little more protection than a cheapy, whether in fact it does I don't know and I don't intend testing mine anytime soon.
Millions are happy to wear one, scientific evidence or not and many have seen accidents where they believe they help prevent worse injuries. Until it happens to you it's easy to dismiss them as marketing hype.

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pjclinch
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby pjclinch » 11 May 2017, 8:30am

Dave W wrote:I think many buy a more expensive helmet hoping for a little more protection than a cheapy, whether in fact it does I don't know and I don't intend testing mine anytime soon.


The best guide to protection is the certification. If it has a Snell certification that is a much higher standard of protection than EN1078, though further note that a Snell helmet will typically have an EN1078 sticker too.
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[XAP]Bob
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Re: Does anyone know why helmets vary in price so much?

Postby [XAP]Bob » 11 May 2017, 11:18am

Dave W wrote:That's just it you see, everyone looks at the picture and says It wasn't bad. Correct the blood didn't come through the helmet it was from lying in a pool unconcious for nearly five minutes. I was there, I witnessed it first hand, nobody from this forum was there and yet they feel it's their right to say exactly what happened and that the helmet caused the crash (it didn't) the helmet didn't protect him (it did) and was totally useless (it wasn't) it was his fault for riding too fast (possibly) and there's no evidence helmets protect you at all (i'd ask him that).
Possibly a more expensive helmet might have crumpled more and taken more energy away from the impact, I don't know. The blow was plenty hard enough to render him unconscious so he continued his journey on his face.I don't think even coming on this forum would convince him to leave his helmet at home.
I think many buy a more expensive helmet hoping for a little more protection than a cheapy, whether in fact it does I don't know and I don't intend testing mine anytime soon.
Millions are happy to wear one, scientific evidence or not and many have seen accidents where they believe they help prevent worse injuries. Until it happens to you it's easy to dismiss them as marketing hype.



Hang on - you were the one who said the helmet caused the accident...

I can't see any damage to the helmet consistent with the helmet having done the job of absorbing energy and mitigating an impact. In fact, if he we travelling on his face then that seems like a reasonable result since that's not where the helmet was (unless he was wearing it there in which case the restrictions to visibility could easily have been a contributory factor).

We weren't there, but from my experience of watching people crash I don't particularly trust eye witness accounts. These things happen sufficiently quickly that the witness doesn't actually see most of it, they (you, me, whoever) are mid saccade during the important phases of the incident.
Video is much better of course...



Until there is some evidence that they actually help then it's easy to dismiss them as marketing hype. One of the easiest ways to convince yourself that it's easy to dismiss their 'safety' ratings is to ask how many manufacturers actively declare the safety ratings they build to.
Cars shout about their NCAP ratings, yet if you look at a helmet box you'll be hard to pushed to find out which standard it was built for...
You certainly won't find an advert for a helmet which claims safety as a benefit - mostly because we have laws against false advertising.
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