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Old 05-30-2003, 08:21 AM   #21
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Default Re: Why not wear a helmet?

Why not? Same resin people smoke I guess. The surgeon generals have proven Smoking causes lung cancer and enfazema and other bad stuff and people are still dumb enough to do it. The "common sens" general states that if something harder than your skull hits it, it will hurt you or kill you.

Why not wear a helet? Cant answer that. Just light up another non filter Camel!
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Old 05-30-2003, 08:22 AM   #22
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Default Re: Why not wear a helmet?

Because sometimes it feels good. Yup, IÂ’m one of those "wear my helmet 99% of the time" guys, but there are times when not wearing one just feels right. For instance, week after next IÂ’ll be putting through Laconia in wall to wall M/C traffic that is moving somewhere between zero and five MPH. No helmet allows me to enjoy the sights, sounds, and smells.

Also depends upon what IÂ’m riding. Going without a helmet is very comfortable (for an hour or so) behind the windshield of my old Beemer at any speed. Lots of fun motoring around the countryside and chatting with my wife (and riding partner of 30 years) about the scenery. On the other hand, riding my VTR1000 without a helmet is not particularly comfortable, probably due to the speeds I travel and the illusion that my head is the leading edge on that bike.

Another reason not to wear a helmet is comfort. Like many who started riding in the 60's, I learned to ride without any type of head protection. Once I found out how the pavement seemed to get harder at higher speeds, I started wearing an open face helmet with goggles – state of the art at the time, and more comfortable than bare head and eyes. I progressed to the obvious protection benefits of a full face helmet when they became widely available found out how uncomfortable a helmet could really be - I’d pull them off of my head at every opportunity. Then, after years of trying to fit my square head into a variety of round holes, my dealer introduced me to Arai, which is so comfortable and well ventilated that I usually leave it on at gas stops.

So the short answer to your question is "personal comfort and enjoyment."

Finally, let me add my enthusiastic agreement to the earlier posts that point out that there is no such thing as "safe" motorcycling, and that laws that try to make it so are a gross infringement on our personal rights. Now, go out and look for things you have in common with those helmet-less bikers –you might be surprised!

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Old 05-30-2003, 08:34 AM   #23
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Default Why ride at all??

Ok, I'm in. I've said it before, but not enough. Why ride a motorcycle at all?? Cars are more comfortable, safer, and more convenient than any motorcycle ever made. Most ride because of the feeling the get being on two wheels, I would imagine. It's a feeling that is hard to describe to anyone that doesn't ride. Most people I know think I'm nuts to ride a motorcycle in the first place, helmet or no. Why would they think that? Simple misinformation is why. Just like the thought that everyone that doesn't wear a helmet is an "organ donor" or a "vegetable" to be, they think everyone that rides a motorcycle will end up dead or maimed. Motorcycles will ALWAYS be more dangerous than cars. There is no argument about that. There is an inherently higher risk in riding a motorcycle even with the BEST equipment available compared to tooling in the Chevy. How much higher is the risk without equipment compared to with? That is impossible to say or prove, but I will take a highly trained, smart rider with no safety equipment over one with all the safety equipment in the world and not a brain cell active in the longevity race. Stupidity will always beat safety gear in the long run. Bet on it. I've been riding for 35 years and I wear a helmet sometimes and sometimes I don't. I choose where and why and I feel the choice should be everyones. If you really want to stay alive on the street stop worrying about your helmet so much and pay attention, don't drink and don't speed excessively. Violate any of those rules consistently and you will be trying out your protective gear real soon. If you ride with your head on straight, you will probably be around for quite a while, helmet or not.
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Old 05-30-2003, 09:20 AM   #24
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Default Re: Why not wear a helmet?

Cheers to all those who actually answered the question of why not wear one. I really was curious and now I know a little more about it. Thank you fellow Mofos for the insight.

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Old 05-30-2003, 10:52 AM   #25
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Default Re: Give me a break.

I don't think anyone ever said a helmet protected anyone from stupid riding. Less than 10 minutes ago I got behind a guy on a new ZX-6R who pulled a stoppie at every light, and generally made a spectacle of himself. He WAS wearing a helmet - to go along with his T-shirt and jeans and sandals. I guess I was supposed to be impressed he could do stoppies.

Anyhow, the moral of this reply is we all know helmets don't overcome stupidity. But they do help in those instances where people can make a mistake and asphalt meets cranium. It just ups the odds, that's all.
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Old 05-30-2003, 11:10 AM   #26
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Default Re: Why not wear a helmet?

I went without a helmet for a long time, even after my first accident (my head stopped an inch from the car door, so it wasn't involved). Then I started riding sportbikes, and with the available power and the lean angles I found myself at, I became pretty religious about always wearing one.

March 8 this year I was heading out on a gorgeous day, and for all of two seconds thought about not wearing my helmet. I decided to strap it on as my wife came out the door and asked if I just wanted to put the helmet in her car. Not only was she asking, but her son was hanging on every word.

I smiled and told her I planned on wearing it, and besides, what kind of example would I be if I didn't?

60 miles later, I found myself flying up and across the hood of the car that had managed to make an illegal left turn between the car ahead of me and my bike. My bike was utterly destroyed; I have a lingering joint problem in my left thumb and felt for a few days like I had been hit by a car, but that was it.

My helmet had a line of gouges and scrapes from the right temple, across the right side of the helmet, and down the back. At the very least, I would have had severe lacerations on my head and very likely a concussion; I don't like to think about what could have happened.

The only difference in outcomes was that I straped on my helmet. I'm not even remotely tempted to ride without one now - not even around the block or to the corner store.

I still remember my reasons why I rode without one - it's cool, it feels awesome to have the wind in your face and blowing through your hair, it's freedom, it's addictive, it's like flying low, it's as close to God and the angels as you can get without actually becoming an angel yourself.

None of those reasons is good enough for me anymore.
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Old 05-30-2003, 11:12 AM   #27
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Default Sometimes the helmet could stay home

If you've ever ridden a 150cc scooter (considered a motorcycle in this state) three blocks to visit a friend, you'd know why wearing a helmet is thought of as a pain in the bippy.

Some times I get done working on my bike and just want to ride it down the street and back to make sure everything sounds good. Again, I leave the helmet behind.

If you've ever ridden a big ol' touring bike with a windscreen the size of a barn door, you'd know why it is pretty easy to say forget the helmet. All that windblast/windnoise stuff doesn't really apply and the open feeling is fun.

Here's a little secret, though. I never ride without my boots. It just doesn't feel right. Personal preference, my man. Personal preference.
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Old 05-30-2003, 11:24 AM   #28
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Default Re: Why not wear a helmet?

Thanks for catching that one, BBD. I never said "laws should require all riders to wear helmets..." -- I was just shuddering to think of going out there without one, myself, and wondered why those that didn't wear one, didn't -- just like he said.
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Old 05-30-2003, 11:33 AM   #29
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Default Re: Why not wear a helmet?

The only way I cannot wear a helmet is to ride over to Iowa where freedom to let the wind tussle my locks is still enjoyed. Nebraska is the tax me to death, tell me what to do state. Sure I would wear a helmet if I'm going to be out riding down the interstate all day. That's high speed riding. If I'm going to ride through the country on secondary roads at speeds below 60 AND I have the choice then I probably would put it in my tour pack. Chances are that these 150 mph crotch rockets wouldn't be the ride of choice for so many of these racer boy types if they didn't have a helmet on. In fact, you can't even ride them at high speed and keep your eyes open without a full coverage helmet on your noggin. Their you have it. If you want to cut down on high speed accidents involving crotch rocket motorcycles, then take away the helmet law. Who in their right mind would ride one of those things without a helmet at high speed. Your eyes instantly tear up and if you look left or right with sunglasses on they will fly off without the helmet. Helmet laws also give these crotch rocket riders a false sense of security because they have it beat into their pin heads that the only thing saving them is that helmet. Without it you are an organ donor but with it you are invincible. What a crock. Most wrecks that I read about are alcohol, speed, or the car driver didn't see them. Take those three reasons away and guess what, motorcyclists' are pretty darned wary and safe riders. Let those who ride decide and the rest of you worry about yourselves.
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Old 05-30-2003, 11:39 AM   #30
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Default Re: Why not wear a helmet?

No, I'm not looking for a soapbox, man. I'm just a new rider who's curious as to why people decide what they do. You say you 'like' to not wear a helmet sometimes; that's as good of an answer as any, though I was curious as to why y'like it... and as far as wearing a helmet most of the time, but not all the time -- fine, go for it. But if 90% of the riders wore helmets say 85% of the time, you'd have only a minority lidless on choice states, which isn't what I observed.

It is your business, but I don't want to leave you to it -- I suppose one too many psychology classes and curiosity for this cat (hope the old adage don't come true) -- I want to understand it.

I make a decision to be statistically unsafe every day by riding my motorcycle. I even ride pretty fast sometimes (moreso as I gain skill; I'm pretty new). But the simple gesture of putting on my helmet makes my odds of survival a lot higher, though I know it by no means guarantees them. And maybe I'm a wimp or a geek, but I think my Arai is kinda comfortable and I think 80 mph of wind in my face is pretty annoying, let alone bugs and rocks.

Why do I wear a full face helmet all the time? Maybe because in Oregon a day over 75 is a big deal -- I spend most of my dressing for riding trying to keep WARM. Maybe because I know how much it hurt when I got caught with only BDU pants on in a hailstorm and wince thinking about what my face would have felt like. Maybe because I'm a victim of the information I hear about how much helmets help survival odds.

What I really want is a 21st century study similar to the Hurt report, so we can all accurately know the risks we take and make informed decisions. That too much of a soapbox for you>

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