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Airbag Vests - recommendations?

  1. #1
    High maintenance priss
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    Airbag Vests - recommendations?


    I read thru 3-4 older posts discussing neck guards (Leatt) which had some mention of airbag vests and suits. I'm committed to the air vest route & specifically interested in neck protection. That said, I'm leaning towards the Hit-Air Track Vest. (they have other models but this one seems to be the popular one for the track).

    Couple other popular ones:
    Helite Turtle
    SIDI DPS Tex


    Recommendations? My suit does not have a race hump and I wear impact armor back & chest protectors.

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    Last edited by keeena; 04-26-18 at 04:19 PM.

  2. #2
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Any vest won't help this.

    Osteoporosis is a bone disease that occurs when the body loses too much bone, makes too little bone, or both. As a result, bones become weak and may break from a fall or, in serious cases, from sneezing or minor bumps.

    Drink Milk!

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    WMC original sdog30's Avatar
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Hit air is the one everyone seems to use in Jersey. I know they make two styles. I believe the race model has a flap that comes down to protect your tailbone.

    I thought they protected your collarbone and ribs more than your neck, but they were developed for horse riding initially, so maybe there is some neck protection, too.

    I know trackside parts club is a good place to buy them. Miles stayed carrying then a year or two ago as well.

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    Awesomeness, Inc. MattR302's Avatar
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    I currently have both the Helite Airnest (previous gen Turtle) and the Helite GP Air.

    I bought the Airnest intending to use it on the track. I used it one track day last year for 2-3 sessions. Since the CO2 canister is on the outside of the right chest, i definitely felt it while making left turns. In addition, the hard plastic on the canister area scratched the hell out of my tank, through several layers of paint, and serious scrapes in the base metal. I contacted Helite, showed them the pic, and they were like "wow, we never heard of this!" BS. I hadn't used it again since.

    Over this winter, I bought a Helite GP Air in a group buy. I unfortunately tested it this past weekend at Thompson. I lowsided in Turn 3, little bit of sliding and then rolling. The vest inflated properly, I got up with no injuries, and I'm sure the vest actually helped to keep my fancy new helmet from contacting the pavement. The vest had only light rash. In the 1.25 sessions I wore it, it definitely felt less intrusive than the Airnest. I wear a 44 or 46 Astars suit, my Helite GP Air is a size L, but a XL would probably be a better fit (I can't fit a separate chest or back protector under my suit with it, but the Helite has some hard protection built in, so I'm not sure separate chest/back protection is necessary)

    After that crash, on Monday/Tuesday I took a trip out to central PA, I wore the Airnest vest for the first time on the street. On a more upright bike like my Tiger 1050, the external canister was not intrusive and had no chance of contacting the tank. The Airnest/Turtle seems to have a little better coverage, but the GP Air is all leather so it would probably withstand multiple crashes better. If you are intending to use it on the track, I would not recommend the Airnest/Turtle. Yes, the GP Air is pricey, but a broken neck is also not cheap. There's one for sale on WERA forum.

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  5. #5
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Great info Matt - thx. The Hit-Air Race has the canister and tether on the back of the vest so it doesn't get in the way. Good point about the leather. The Hit-Air in this crash got pretty rashed up @100mph...but it did its job. https://youtu.be/wtmV8DDfIP0?t=527

    @Sam - the race model is mostly a neck roll with some spine and rib coverage. But they do have other larger models which cover the lower back and kidneys more like you mentioned.

    [Edit] - Matt - digging the Helite GP Air...had not seen that version. You happen to be riding any TDs in the near future? Would like to check it out.

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    Last edited by keeena; 04-26-18 at 10:33 PM.

  6. #6
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    I own two neck braces; a Leatt for street/track/sm and an Atlas for dirt. I almost never wear the Atlas.

    All things equal, I wish I'd invested in an air vest instead of the neck braces. I think they are a less intrusive way to get that kind of protection. I believe they perform similar functions, if not with some strengths & weaknesses in their protection. But overall I think the vests are a much more user friendly way to get the job done.

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  7. #7
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by keeena View Post
    [Edit] - Matt - digging the Helite GP Air...had not seen that version. You happen to be riding any TDs in the near future? Would like to check it out.
    I've got a GP Air and will be at the TTD Palmer event Memorial Day weekend. Maybe the Sunday in mid-May too. The thing really is impressive... I can't even tell I'm wearing it when on the bike.

    I've not crashed but I did get a live demo of the Turtle at last year's motorcycle show in NY. Impressive.

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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    I just got an Astars techair suit. The vest is internal, and untethered. It has a serious amount of coverage for torso. Shoulders, Chest, lower back, ribs and organs. What it does not do is create a big neck guard. The vests definitely inflate higher in that area. Each system has it's strengths. Of them all, I felt the techair offered the most protection overall and I couldn't stand being tethered. Just an OCD thing I guess.

    Of the vests, the Helite looks the best to me, but I wouldn't wear armor AND the helite. That would seem far too restrictive, heavy and hot. It has armor in it. If you want to continue wearing the impact armor, then I think hitair is the right choice.

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  9. #9
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    @Paul - Yeah, tethered has drawbacks vs intelligent suits. There's a lowside vid where the vest didn't activate until rider separated from the bike after the initial fall. The Helite GP Air does not have a BP or armor on the back; has a vee cutout for race humps. The sides of the back do inflate tho. PIC. But point taken - I agree that the HitAir generally seems better as a neck-specific add-on if sticking with the rest of the gear (chest & back protectors).

    @adouglas - Yeah, I'll be at both TTD events in May. I'll keep my eyes open or shoot ya a PM. I really want to get an idea of fitment and what I might need to change (e.g. no chest or bp).

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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Damn you Paul. I'm now making a trip to Seacoast tomorrow...

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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by keeena View Post
    Damn you Paul. I'm now making a trip to Seacoast tomorrow...
    Do it. Thing is amazing

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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by sdog30 View Post
    Hit air is the one everyone seems to use in Jersey. I know they make two styles. I believe the race model has a flap that comes down to protect your tailbone.

    I thought they protected your collarbone and ribs more than your neck, but they were developed for horse riding initially, so maybe there is some neck protection, too.

    I know trackside parts club is a good place to buy them. Miles stayed carrying then a year or two ago as well.
    True that. Moto JC (Jersey City) had a bunch of them in stock when I went there. Ozzy picked one up. Not sure if the race one or not, but the one they sold did have the protection going all the all down to the tail bone.

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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    New Airbag vest from Klim: https://www.klim.com/Ai-1-Airbag-Vest-3046-000
    Licensed technology from a French company: https://www.inemotion.com/en/moto/

    It’s good to see more options in this space. I like that it seems lighter weight than my Helite vests. I dunno about wearing it under other gear, seems like your outer gear would have to be pretty loose-fitting. I get that these digital systems need power, but I’d hate having to remember to charge it. At least if I forget to charge my Sena, I’m not compromising safety by riding without it - and the Sena can be charge while riding.

    The Helite Turtle has been part of my street ATGATT for 2 years now.

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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by MattR302 View Post
    New Airbag vest from Klim: https://www.klim.com/Ai-1-Airbag-Vest-3046-000
    Licensed technology from a French company: https://www.inemotion.com/en/moto/

    It’s good to see more options in this space.
    Looks interesting, but having to pay $120/year for the software on top of the price of the vest seems like a lot.

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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Reviving an older thread...

    I may give the Klim Ai-1 a try... long term it's not very cost effective, and having another damn thing that needs charged will kind of suck...however, I can use it internally with my existing gear, with bonus points after donning my jacket just wearing the vest around with my dong patches ;-)

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  16. #16
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by caboteria View Post
    Looks interesting, but having to pay $120/year for the software on top of the price of the vest seems like a lot.
    Yeah, that's crazy. $520 first year including purchase, then lease at $120 per year? No thanks

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  17. #17
    Lifer loudbeard's Avatar
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Honestly the price is less than competitors, by quite a bit. Am I understanding it correctly that the vest pairs to your phone, does that mean it uses the phone’s gyro and telemetry info to trigger the system?

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  18. #18
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    I like my Helite Turtle. I use it on the track too which might not be the best idea, but I hear they can stand up to a few slides. And new cartridge refills are only like $25.

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    Lifer loudbeard's Avatar
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Point of reference, Alpinestars Tech Air vest is $1,200. Helite is $900. Comparing apples to apples, these are all under the suit/jacket air systems.

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  20. #20
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    it uses the phone for updates to the AI and is not required for operation on a day to day basis. I ordered it. You can buy the electronics part for $300 - so $700 all in.

    My concern is the AI part...if I get the wrong ice cream and start a tantrum with and jump all around am I going to inflate?...sending my dong patch flying?

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    Last edited by two-rocks; 08-07-20 at 05:10 PM. Reason: dong patch not dung ;-)

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    Lifer loudbeard's Avatar
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    $700 all in is a pretty good number, let us know how you like it. Hopefully you don’t need to test it out anytime soon.

    I’m doing new track gear next season, on the fence about what to go with. AStars and Dianese both have great systems but are top dollar both for the air system and the compatible suits. I’m not sure I’m bothered by that considering what my last crash at the track cost me both in medical bills and recovery time. That said, if I can save a grand or so while still getting the same/similar level of protection, I’m all for it. It certainly opens up options on suits when the time comes

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  22. #22
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    To refill A-stars airbag suit is $300 ($150/ fall, it has 2 charges). And to ship to LA is expensive. F-ing rip off. Keep it simple, go CO2

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  23. #23
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Quote Originally Posted by loudbeard View Post
    Point of reference, Alpinestars Tech Air vest is $1,200. Helite is $900. Comparing apples to apples, these are all under the suit/jacket air systems.
    You make a good point.

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  24. #24

    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Wristy from the MaxWrist YouTube channel got smashed by Jesus while he was making a u-turn and got hit so hard bones were sticking out of his legs. He had his vest on and claims it helped...might be cheaper than a hospital bill

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  25. #25
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    Re: Airbag Vests - recommendations?

    Looks like I read poorly. The total would $800 ($400 to buy the electric parts). Might just do the monthly option...still figuring.

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