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Tag Archive: helmet

Bandbox Helmet Review

“Ninety-one percent of bicyclists killed in 2009 weren’t wearing helmets.”

That’s a quote from a website dedicated to Bicycle helmet statistics. (According to Bandbox LLC’s website the number is 95!)

It’s sad that that number is so high especially when plenty of styles could be worn to make it more fashionable–there are helmets in the style that skateboarders use to helmets designed by companies with roots in extreme sports like snowboarding.

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But even with the many options available with, people still ignore the dangers of riding without a helmet all for the sake of avoiding “looking goofy”.

Bandbox LLC, a company similar to Rockinoggins, aims to increase helmet use by designing “attractive bicycle helmets”. While Rockinoggins makes add-ons for helmets, Bandbox LLC makes helmets that deceivingly look like hats.

A couple months after Bikecommuters.com profiled Rockinoggins, Dr. Cheryl Allen-Munley sent Bikecommuters.com a helmet to review. And after a couple of months, here is the review for the model!

 

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Is it a hat?

When I first received the helmet, I asked those around me to see what they thought of the helmet. I wondered if people thought it looked more like a helmet or if it passes off as a hat. The result? People couldn’t tell if it was a helmet or if it was a hat. I suppose somebody could argue that the product doesn’t fully meet its goal in that some are not totally fooled but one thing everyone mentioned was that the helmet looked good.

Safety?

Bandbox Helmets adhere to the U.S. Law–the CPSC Standard which stands for Consumer Product Safety Commission. http://www.bhsi.org/standard.htm#CPSC

But there is one thing that may prevent some buyers purchasing a Bandbox Helmet–the helmets do not have a surface that can slide upon impact (Bandbox Helmets have fabric for an exterior instead of plastic) I personally think that anything that can increase helmet use is okay so if not looking cool/fashionable is preventing a bicyclist from wearing a helmet, I recommend purchasing a Bandbox Helmet.

 

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Can I use it everyday?

Because the helmet is not ventilated like performance helmets, getting a sweaty head can be an issue. I personally wouldn’t recommend to commuters that like to go fast or to those that have commutes that are longer than 5 miles. Perhaps I’m being nitpicky but I certainly don’t want to arrive to work being more sweaty than I need to.

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Bottom line?
I think it’s an excellent product. It fills a need in the market for helmets since plenty of people hate the idea of looking stupid or foolish (use whatever adjective you like) in a helmet. We all agree that any cycling death should be prevented especially if it’s something as simple as wearing a “stupid” helmet.

Our FTC review disclaimer.

Interbike 2012: RockiNoggins

Earlier, I know we covered another helmet cover called the “Helmet Hoodie” but some still are looking for something that fits their wardrobe better.

When I started bike commuting a couple of years ago, I remember not wanting to wear a helmet. I wanted to look cool. I thought helmets made me look stupid. Every helmet I tried on, besides those that cost around 100 dollars, I thought, made me look foolish. So I went on riding a bike for a few weeks without a helmet until I saw a PSA about cycling head injuries. That weekend, I went to Wal-Mart and purchased the cheapest helmet (I’m a bit of cheap-skate) despite how it made my head look.

Now I may have been lucky enough to be convinced by a safety video. But what about those that haven’t been convinced to get a helmet? This is where RockiNoggins comes in.  Elissa Heller, an Acute Care Nurse for 30 years saw there was a need for cyclists to wear helmets. According to Elissa, 20% of traumatic brain injuries are of people not wearing helmets when riding a bike. So she teamed up with a hat maker to create helmet covers that would address people’s reluctance to wear a helmet.

Elissa Heller, ACN

I could have gotten the photos from their website but I wanted to showcase how their hats look with my own camera phone. I’ve found that professionally done photos are usually not the best way to gauge whether something will look good on me. My impression? It’s hard to notice that someone is wearing a helmet with these on–they look like slightly oversized hats. As a matter of fact, while I was interviewing a couple of the exhibitors from RockiNoggins, a few people asked with a SMILE (Yes, I put the word in bold, italicized capitals), “Is there a helmet under that?”

To me it was obvious that it had to be a helmet cover. But to the few that stopped the interview to verify if it was just a hat, they could not tell the difference!

All helmet covers have a clip for bike lights to increase visibility at night.

Look closely and you can see the Helmet brim.

Here are a few additional styles from their site.

Women:

Annie

Rayne

Men/Unisex:

Ryan

Storm

Parker

So, what started out as trying to find a solution to decrease the number of people with traumatic brain injuries, Elissa Heller, found a good way to increase helmet use while providing a way to be fashionably forward. And for those that are looking for a more fashionable option than, say, a Helmet Hoodie, RockiNoggins is a good alternative.

Cost: $24.95-$33.95

Size: One size fits all.

Company Site: RockiNoggins.com
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/RockiNoggins

Commuting in Style (Pint-Sized Edition)

In two of my semi-recent posts, I laid out some of the choices in traveling by bike with kids, and in choosing a helmet for those pint-sized commuters. Since then, we’ve acquired both a front-mounted seat and a helmet for our youngest, R. We’re in the early stages of use still… but so far so good!

First… the seat. It’s a Yepp Mini we got with our REI dividend (yeah, we shop there a bit!), and it is the coolest bike seat I think I’ve ever seen. I’d assumed it would be plasticky, but it’s actually a pretty soft – but shape-holding – rubber texture. R thinks it’s about the coolest thing ever, and couldn’t stop grinning during our first test ride! The only bad thing about it is we don’t have a bike that it fits really well on – right now it’s on my wife’s hybrid, but she has to pedal carefully so she doesn’t bang her knees, the footrests affect her turning radius (although not terribly), and she can’t slide forward too easily when she comes to a stop. So… we’ll see how it works out. We’re huge fans of the seat itself, but not quite as big fans of how it works with us and our bikes. I’ve got my eye out for a bike it’d work better with though – I figure I can find a used city/cruiser-style bike with a friendlier geometry for less than the cost of the Yepp mini! These seats are hugely popular in Europe for use with Dutch-style bikes – but the Dutch-style bikes here come at a prohibitive price point. I’ll be reporting back in the coming months on what we end up doing!

For the helmet, we went with the Lazer BOB infant helmet, and it’s working out pretty nicely. It fits R a lot better than other helmets we’ve tried, though it’s not as easily adjustable as some (you have to remove the helmet completely to adjust the straps, which is less than ideal), and… yeah, it still looks kinda huge! We’re still working on getting the fit 100% dialed (we make a small adjustment every time we put it on her), but overall we’re pretty happy with it.

Post-ride Contemplation

In search of a new lid

I’ve been using the same helmet for commuting:

Mountain Biking,

and road cycling,

There’s nothing wrong with my current helmet, but I would like a less ‘racy’ looking helmet for commuting. High in my priority list is ventilation, then price. I don’t really care for the Bell City or Bell Metro.

Any suggestions?