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Old 07-10-2020, 01:06 PM   #1
dravnx
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Air Bag vests

School me on air bag vests. I 'm considering purchasing one. I've seen them save injury on 2 riders now. A friend's young son went down on the track doing 150 and had very little injuries and another friend and his wife were riding 2 up, hit a patch of deep pine needles when he swerved to avoid a pot hole at about 30 and went down. Her jacket deployed and she was injury free.
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Old 07-10-2020, 01:21 PM   #2
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They are so many options now, it is getting confusing. For track use many like the shortie style with the tether in the back and out of the way. Back when we had 2 choices I went with Hit-Air MLV. This is larger with a bit better rib protection and with added tail bone protection. Some don't like the idea of the tether and CO2 canister in front, however on track in full tuck I really don't notice it at all, unless I think about it and I can tell it's there, most with the MLV will say same. It is easier to connect in front too and when off bike I toss my tether across my R. grip to not forget to hook up. I always wear it and found that it does not really effect air flow. Prices are all over the place, and I've seen a few used one's for sale on here. I would not get too hung up on response time as even the slowest one's are more then fast enough. Cost go up with non-tether exotic electronics and sensors. Nothing to fail or dead batteries in a tether vest. I'm sure many will make sound arguments over the advantages on tether-less.

That's all I got for ya, GL!
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Old 07-10-2020, 04:45 PM   #3
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I still have my Helite Turtle Airbag Vest in case I need it for track days or passenger or as a backup for my main, but I've been much happier with the version integrated in a jacket.
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Old 07-10-2020, 07:33 PM   #4
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I had the pleasure of crashing on street and track. I had the hit air vest that deployed. The crash wasn't too dramatic but I didn't come out with any neck back chest injuries. Shoulder was sore due to having no air bag in that area. The textile version got punctured from the slide. I was able to duck tape it together but that's the trade off with textile. Second was a high side with the helite gp best. I flew off and landed on my shoulder. Manage to break my collar bone due to having just depending on my shoulder armor. Everything else was saved. No neck or back pain and rib was sore but nothing bad. The leather from the gp vest is minimal damaged and can be reused. The trade off in terms of injury is you can injure anything on the side but your core body will be mostly fine. If. You go tech air from alpine stars you trade off primary protection for a more overall impact protection since the tech air has shoulder coverage but lacks full spinal immobilization
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Old 07-10-2020, 10:12 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dravnx View Post
School me on air bag vests. I 'm considering purchasing one. I've seen them save injury on 2 riders now. A friend's young son went down on the track doing 150 and had very little injuries and another friend and his wife were riding 2 up, hit a patch of deep pine needles when he swerved to avoid a pot hole at about 30 and went down. Her jacket deployed and she was injury free.
No way, no how. I've put plenty of bikes on the ground and every time, all I want is to make sure I'm separated from the bike. The vests have the propensity to catch on handlebars, pegs, bodywork, etc and pin you to the bike. There's a reason leathers are free of areas that can catch on things as you slide.

They're a neat idea, but not for the track and for me, not anything I think is a good idea.
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Old 07-10-2020, 11:07 PM   #6
S21FOLGORE
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I wrote this review (Hit-Air MLV-P Vest) back in 2017.

http://www.ducatimonsterforum.org/in...?topic=75707.0

Rather than copy & past that thing, I'm going to write this specifically for you.

You have already seen how effective they are, so you probably don't need to watch this, but let me show this video for others who are interested in air-bag vest and reading this thread.

You don't need to watch the entire video. First one minute is enough.


youtu.be/ZaykzE7P_XE

The rider walked away from this accident, without major injury.
(He was able to ride back home.)

Pretty impressive, right?



Vest vs Jacket

If you have more than one set of gear, the vest makes more sense.
The vest can be worn over the jacket / suit you already have, and it can work with any of the jacket / suit you have or you will have in near future.

Realistically, you need at least two sets of riding gear, one for warmer weather and one for colder weather (even in San Francisco Bay Area), so buying a jacket with airbag integrated just doesn’t make logical sense, to me.(What if the accident happens while you are wearing another jacket ?)


I keep mine on Aerostich Roadcrafter R-3, and it goes on with R-3, comes off with R-3.
No extra step to don/doff the vest.


youtu.be/KMuGSgzcA_E

It is "MLV-P" model, in Hi-Viz yellow.
Japanese motorcycle police officers wear this one, in blue.


youtu.be/fpuMuih5-m4

Air Flow in hot weather riding

It has split back kind of design, so it flows enough air. (When it’s getting close to 90°F, I switch to Dainese mesh jacket. I simply move the airbag vest onto the Dainese jacket, wear them as one unit. Although the vest blocks some air flow, I’ve never had any problem. Also, keep in mind that I wear chest protector all the time, that also block some air flow. Again, I have no complain about that.)

The only thing you'll have to do before starting to use the vest

you need to find a suitable anchor point and attach the coiled wire to the bike.



tether clipped here while not in use



Then, adjust the length of the coiled wire. Standing up on the foot pegs while still holding the handle bar with both hand, the coiled wire should be stretched out all the way.





This is the only thing you have to do before starting to use the vest.

About test data, Marketing BS, things most pople in US don't know ...

Back then when Hit-Air and Helite were pretty much the only options, some people thought Helite was superior product.

They weren't.

It's just that they were much better in marketing, that's all.

I'm not bashing Helite, and I'm not affiliated with Hit-Air, but ...

The truth is, Hit-Air just don't do good marketing. (Especially, outside of Japan.)
However, I found that their description being more honest.
(eg, showing the test data done by the 3rd party. Not trying to make their product sounds superior to the competitors.
Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not bashing Helite, but, Helite web site says

“TURTLE CE Approved Airbag effective in 0.1 seconds”

A lot of people would think this as
CE certified Airbag completely deploys (fully inflated) in 0.1 seconds

but it is not....

What does "effective" really mean? It's very vague, open to wide range of interpretation.
100% effective, 50% effective, 10% effective ? They all can be called "effective".

Hit-Air clearly says the neck support part deploys the first, then the body part.
No CO2 based air-bag vest in the universe will fully inflate neck, chest, hip and back all at the same time.

On Helite web site,
No EN number shown.
No 3rd party test data shown.


If you are interested,
here are the safety rating and testing data of Hit Air air-bag vest.

here
https://www.hit-air.com/en/motorcycl...a/shogeki.html

here
https://www.hit-air.com/en/motorcycl.../2008jari.html

and here
https://www.hit-air.com/en/motorcycl.../2011jari.html

All the test done by JARI (Japan Automotive Research Institute).
http://www.jari.or.jp/tabid/200/Default.aspx

Same story with their protectors.


Anyway, at least, they (Mugen Denko, the company who makes and sells Hit-Air vest)) are honest enough to show the EN number (so that you, as a potential buyer, will know which part of the vest/ jacket is CE certified), instead of just saying “our product xxx is CE approved (which does NOT mean it is CE certified). Again, I am NOT attacking Helite airbag vest. I honestly believe they both work equally well in the real life examples.

(Okay, I need to take shower. Add a little bit more info later.)

Last edited by S21FOLGORE; 07-10-2020 at 11:09 PM..
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Old 07-11-2020, 06:16 AM   #7
dravnx
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Wow, just wow. Thanks for the great information. I'm pretty much sold on a vest so I can wear it with my Klim Badlands jacket. I love my Klim and don't want to replace it.
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Old 07-11-2020, 07:09 AM   #8
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The next step would be air bag pants, or even air bag gloves, and how about an air bag helmet with a drop down neck protector. I’m actually not joking here. Why stop at protecting just the chest/back area? If I fly off a bike and I’m headed for the pavement I’d like to look like the Michelin man
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Old 07-11-2020, 07:10 AM   #9
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Dianese smart vest for me. It took forever to get here, but it’s a cool device. Charge lasts forever. It’s comfortable under my jacket. Have not crash tested it. About $700

It is warm to cover your whole torso with neoprene. It was so nice in winter. I do put it on when I know I’m getting on the freeway, but skip it for under 40mph grocery runs.

Edit to address above question. Equestrian applications have a full cervical head hood thing going. One of my students used them and said they are saving lives left and right in horse world. Apparently riding horses is worse than motos
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Last edited by nakedape; 07-11-2020 at 07:12 AM..
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Old 07-11-2020, 07:11 AM   #10
greenmonster
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I wish also that the cost would come down on these vests . $600-$900 is out of reach for most people
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Old 07-11-2020, 08:49 AM   #11
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the new klim vest is pretty affordable at 399$ for the vest and a 12$ a month, OR 120$ a year subscription to the deployment company. or can outright buy the subscription for 399$

https://www.klim.com/Ai-1-Airbag-Vest-3046-000

they have them at sjbmw
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Old 07-11-2020, 08:56 AM   #12
dravnx
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Safety devices are incremental. No single device is going to save you in all situation but todays technology can lessen injury and decrease your chances of needing that technology.
I'm glad there are those who have gone down numerous times without injury but I want to stack the deck in my favor.
The Hit Air MLV looks like the best compromise between protection, price and air flow. I ride in very hot weather and air flow is important to me.
I don't want to pay a subscription or have to charge anything. When I get to my motel room at the end of the day, I have enough sh*t to charge already so no wifi/BT systems.
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Last edited by dravnx; 07-11-2020 at 08:59 AM..
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Old 07-11-2020, 09:02 AM   #13
S21FOLGORE
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Pros and Cons of Air-Bag vest

Pros
Extra protection around the neck, entire back, entire chest, hip(both side and back) that regular body armor cannot offer.
Especially important thing is that the airbag vest stabilizes the riders neck as soon as the rider gets ejected from the bike.


Spinal cord injury is one of the worst nightmare.
Hit-Air (ever since they came out in mid 90s) clearly says the neck area inflate first, because stabilizing the neck first is more important than, say… saving rib cage, for example.

I personally recommend wearing the vest all the time if you decide to buy one.
Hitting deer in the evening / night is one thing, but, in today’s society we live in, I’m more worried about getting rear-ended by texting driver.

Additional Pros

Big reflective material is not some cheapo stuff, but LUMIDEX. Works great.

How it looks like from typical car driver’s point of view




Cons

Nothing, really. Other than ...

It makes you look dorky.
(Well, I wear Hi-Viz yellow Aerostich, so I already look dorky enough from the beginning.)



It makes you look fat.
(One piece Aerostich makes you look fatter than you actually are, anyway. Who cares. You can’t see yourself while riding.)

It costs over $500.
(A whole lot cheaper than ambulance ride to ER.)

Really the only thing you’d loose is “cool” biker image. And the level of protection the airbag vest offer far outweigh the uncool look.


Pros of tether & CO2 canister based system over Dainese / Alpinestars system

They are user resettable.

You can carry extra CO2 cartridge, allen key and screw. Anybody can do this. (Tech-Air, D-air system requires you to send the jacket/suit back to the factory every time it deploys.)
Imagine you are on a motorcycle trip, and you have a minor tip-over in the parking lot and the air-bag deploys.
With Tech-Air / D-air system, you won’t have air-bag protection for the rest of the trip.
With tether & Co2 system, you can re-arm your system in less than 30 min, all by yourself.


You can buy one or two extra canister with your vest, and you can even try to deploy the vest. With Tech-Air/ D-air system, user test is not possible. You just have to believe they would work.
And then, you can refold the vest and reset the trigger system by yourself.


How to re-arm Hit-Air vest


youtu.be/zPiXqgyz-04
https://youtu.be/zPiXqgyz-04

Hit Air vest includes the tools (allen key and screw) to reset the vest. The only thing you have to buy separately is CO2 canister.
(I was going to make a video like that, but I totally forgot while making all other videos …)

Note

Resetting the vest is pretty simple, but there are two important things to mention.

Look at 3:35 - 3:50. You must remove the set screw. If you don't, the air bag won't deploy.

Look at 3:58. The red plastic cover must be moved up. If you forget, the air bag won't deploy.
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Old 07-11-2020, 09:36 AM   #14
dravnx
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My friends wife was able to rearm her jacket while on the trip because they carried extra cartridges and the tools.
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Old 07-11-2020, 09:52 AM   #15
S21FOLGORE
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In hot weather
When it’s getting closer to 90 °F, I switch to Dainese Super Speed Tex (mesh) jacket. (The pants are old D-dry, with liner removed.)






MLV-P flows enough air.
The chest protector blocks more air than anything I wear, actually.
(This one (RS Taichi) I wear when I switch to Dainese Jacket. My R-3 had TF-3 chest pad attached .)

Deployment test video



youtu.be/uNzvYjD_7Dk


youtu.be/HGXwHLrf7T0


Now, no protective gear is perfect. We all know that.

Example of air-bag vest working good

(Skip to 8:40)

youtu.be/wtmV8DDfIP0



Example of air-bag vest doesn’t really work


youtu.be/M9Ag_ZmRt3w


In the 2nd video, what happened was, …
He was hit by another rider, went down, BUT, WAS NOT EJECTED from the bike.
He was trapped between the bike and the ground, kept on sliding underneath the bike until they stop on gravel.
This can happen to any system.
If you get trapped under your bike and sliding, the air-bag vest really won’t help.
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