Thread: Bauer 4500
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07-26-2013, 03:13 PM
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Originally Posted by Jarick View Post
There's a lot of speculation and hyperbole, but nothing has been proven. The HECC certifies helmets pass/fail, not a grading system. The purpose of a helmet is to prevent injury to the skull, not to prevent concussions.
Originally Posted by bad tape job View Post
That is correct! A 4500 will do that as well as the newest M11.
I'm going to have to disagree with these a bit. I have worked in the bicycle industry, have dealt with motor racing helmets and now work in hockey as well and I can say that not all helmets protect the same just because it passes a standardized test.

Yes, all helmets pass the basic test, but as was said, its basically a pass/fail system.

What we do not know is by what margin that test was passed. It could be very likely that a helmet such as the 4500 barely passed the test, or passed it with a ton of room to spare. The same can be said for any helmet out there, we do not know by how much a helmet passed the test. In school we all know that C is passing, but an A is a better score.

Just because a helmet passes, does not mean that it is just as protective.

Then you get into multiple impact testing and testing for different kinds of impacts. Where these helmets really will separate themselves can be in this area, though there is no formal testing for this.

VN foam can be very good for keeping its shape and being able to retain its ability to handle multiple impacts. Foams such as EPP are not nearly as good as returning to their original state after large impacts. They do a better job absorbing a very large impact, but then they're "used up" for lack of a better description, where VN might not take the initial impact as well, but can take multiple small ones better.

Then there is the M11 which doesnt use foam at all and in its independent testing has shown the ability to return to its original shape better than most, thereby allowing for more protection in a third or fourth significant impact.

So the bottom line is there is no one "do it all" best helmet. All helmets can meet some basic requirement, but we will never know if it barely squeaks through, or did it pass with flying colors. Also, depending on the kind of impact one helmet may be better than another.

So where does that leave us?

Basically, where we started. Look to the helmet that fits you the best, is the most comfortable and one that you'll wear correctly. That will give you the best chance of protection. Beyond that, you can try to look at all the different designs and bet on what will be the mostly likely impact you'll face and try to use the manufacturer information to gauge which design will serve you best.

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