Do skull cap helmets have any value?

Discussion in 'General' started by SGVRider, Apr 13, 2019.

  1. SGVRider

    SGVRider Well-Known Member

    What is says on the tin. I was cycling down a local Socal canyon this morning and came across a massive accident. An SUV and cruiser collided head on, it appeared one or both crossed the center line and they hit head on. Cruiser pilot was dead, broken neck and blood spilling across the road from his head wounds. His female passenger was on the side of the road jacked up but with what looked like survivable injuries. I went over and comforted her and got her to stay down / still to prevent further injury until the medics got there.

    What stood out to me was that both of their helmets were in the middle of the road and looked like they’d flown off during the accident. They were the skullcap looking jobs. Do these things have ANY value whatsoever? I know some are supposedly DOT rated but does that mean anything? Is the helmet coming off in an impact a function of improper wear, poor materials or the inherent flaws in skull cap helmets? Or all 3? If they’re inherently flawed, how do they even get a DOT rating? Both had no safety gear whatsoever other than their useless skullies so I wouldn’t wager on the quality or proper wear of their equipment.
  2. Banditracer

    Banditracer Dogs - because people suck

    Their only value is they create organ donors.
    CRA_Fizzer likes this.
  3. Jedb

    Jedb Professional Novice :-)

    They are helmets in name only, and serve to satisfy the letter of the law.
    They don't protect anything, as you have seen..
    stk0308, Chris, MachineR1 and 2 others like this.
  4. 418

    418 Expert #59

    I really wanna jump on the bandwagon here but colliding head on with a SUV no amount of safety gear is gonna help ya.
    Chris, Shenanigans, Sprinky and 3 others like this.
  5. BSA43

    BSA43 Well-Known Member

    As do motorcycles, to hear some people . . .
  6. SGVRider

    SGVRider Well-Known Member

    Yeah I think he’d still have been DOA even with a full face. The impact energy looked incredible. The rim on the cruiser was visibly dented in maybe 20% of its diameter and the SUV looked like it hit a concrete wall not a bike. I’d estimate a reasonable motorcycle speed at that point at around 40-45, similar for the SUV.

    A full face would definitely have helped the passenger though.

    How do some get rated as DOT compliant? Or is the DOT compliant rating meaningless itself?
  7. SGVRider

    SGVRider Well-Known Member

    For sure. I’m a personal freedom loving guy and think anyone should be able to not wear a helmet or wear a silly skull cap. I don’t understand why you’d wear a skull cap though if you’re going to wear a helmet, or how these things are even sold when they have zero protection value.
    badmoon692008 likes this.
  8. rd49

    rd49 Well-Known Member

    Personal freedom would also extend to wearing inadequate head protection. Stupid but same principle.
  9. zamboiv

    zamboiv Well-Known Member

    Santiago canyon? out by cooks corner?
  10. ryoung57

    ryoung57 Well-Known Member

    I don’t know for sure, but I believe DOT rating is just impact absorption, not total coverage. If their helmets came off they probably had them unfastened or loosely fastened.

    The really cheap/flimsy ones are not DOT certified but come with a sticker you can put on to appease the authorities.
  11. Banditracer

    Banditracer Dogs - because people suck

    You can buy fake DOT stickers at any of the Harley gatherings.
    stk0308 and 418 like this.
  12. SGVRider

    SGVRider Well-Known Member

    CA-39 San Gabriel Canyon road, about 500m south of the OHV area entrance right before the East Fork bridge.
  13. zamboiv

    zamboiv Well-Known Member

    Got it.
  14. SGVRider

    SGVRider Well-Known Member

    People are strange. The authorities force them to wear helmets against their will, so they protest by wearing the flimsiest protection possible. Funny how so many good intentions backfire.
  15. gt#179

    gt#179 Dirt Dork

    The DOT standard is a standard that is not tested by the DOT, it's a self certification. Most reputable brands will only put DOT on a helmet that actually meets or exceeds the DOT standards as otherwise they would be sued by the litigious nature of the US and would go out of business in short order.

    BUT there are plenty of skull cap helmets that do not meet DOT standards that are sold as "novelty helmets" and as such do not meet any standards. These riders/users tend to habituate rallies where you can also purchase "DOT" stickers that are then placed on said skull cap and might actually pass a visual inspection should they be pulled over.

    So the helmet manufacturer is fine because they can say that they only sell "novelty helmets" and they did not put any DOT labelling on the helmets as they do not meet those standards. The customer added the labelling to meet legal standards in the area, when the helmet does not actually meet the standard. It's pretty obvious if you look at an actual DOT half helmet vs the novelty helmet which is which, but folks that are required to use one can cheat the system to get by. Till they actually need it.
    stk0308 and badmoon692008 like this.
  16. SPL170db

    SPL170db Trackday winner

    I'm sure they'd prove to be very helpful in a crash like least if you have an ugly face

    Steady T likes this.
  17. Jedb

    Jedb Professional Novice :-)

    I don’t know how. I have seen tables at shows where they are selling “costume” helmets and DOT stickers separately... so, ho figure.

    Head on with an SUV will lose unless you are in a cage, another SUV, or larger. A proper helmet could help minimize secondary damage from sliding, hitting the ground, etc.
  18. Jedb

    Jedb Professional Novice :-)

    I saw a Harley crash where the dude lost most of the skin off his face due to an almost identical slide pattern. He had the combat yamaka as well...
  19. Past Glory

    Past Glory Well-Known Member

    I want to say I remember such head covers being referred to as "novelty" to get around not being DOT.
  20. This old Rz

    This old Rz Member

    The D.O.T thing is likley a unenforceable mandate these days... Made in China....anything I'm weary of. And when it comes to anything but top shelf equippment it's ALL made in China..and even then I wonder.
    I purchased a full face D.O.T. dirtbike helmet on E Bay...real (flashy) Red Bull graphics...when I got's a pretty sorry excuse for true protection...I can grab the chin area and flex it about 3 shit. Hit a Rock etc.. it WILL break..not ideal...but it does offer "some"protection it's all how where it impacts. But there's NO WAY IN HELL..any E Bay helmet from China is truly D.O.T....No Chance.
    I have a few old 80s helmets, Fred Merkel Arai, Kenny Roberts AGV, John Kisinski Shoei..and a couple Bell MOTO3s ...they may be old and technically not safe...but I'll wear them anyday over one of the 30+ year newer made in China bargain helmets.

    Even the most basic ,60s glitter 1/2 helmets will save your life..but it's only up to s limit.
    I live in So Cal and in my 52 years have seen or rolled up on I'd guess to say approx 4-5 dozen fatal bike accidents, no helmet nor riding gear would have saved most if them...but on the concussion accidents...I believe helmets have saved 100s of 1000s of people...even me.
    The skull helmets,1/2 retro hipster helmets, etc.. do help protect on these types of accidents, but as you viewed the skull helmets at speed or severe impacts fly off the head as there not secured to the head as in all wrapped's obvious that a front impact, can cause terrible injury to jaw chin area.
    I've only viewed 3 cruiser bike fatalities in all these years..including my brothers, all others have been sport bikes...there's no saving a rider from the incredible forces suffered when hitting a imobile object..our bodies cannot survive the massive G forces when stopped even from 30 a o often fatal. I spoke with a old timer ranger once on Angeles Crest Hwy, and he estimated over 500 riders had been killed on that road alone..most he thought were unsurivable...even if he was off on his estimates ...that's staggering...

Share This Page