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Road Course/Track and Autocross For road course/track and autocross discussions.

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Old 08-20-2014, 12:50 AM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bannonm View Post
Joliet Autobahn does not require a full face. As a matter of fact, they rent only open face helmets.

That being said, I would still use a full face. I had an accident last year with a full face and still knocked unconscious.
I was there and that scared the shit out of me. You do not skimp on safety people, the life you save could be your own.

T.

PS. So glad you came out OK on that one.
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Old 08-21-2014, 10:36 AM   #27
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1- The OP was asking about helmets for autocross, not full on tracking.

2- The thread is not about fire protection.

3- If you look at the number of laps turned by cars participating in autocross events and compare that to how many actually crash, my guess is that you can logically determine that there are very few crashes in relation to the number of cars and laps turned in these events across the country.

I also don't think it's a stretch to assume that of that small amount of crashes during autocross events, only a tiny fraction of those would cause a car to burst into flames or potentially have fire as an issue at all. Even if you lost the odds and it happened, you'd probably not be incapacitated to the point you were trapped or unconscious in the car and you couldn't get out before you were burned. I don't see anyone talking about wearing a fire suit and gloves, so I also think it's logical to assume you'd be wearing cotton pants and shirt and I don't see anyone criticizing people for that. If you're on fire and burning that badly that a cotton hoodie comes into play, IMO you're already ****ed. If you're talking about wearing a full fire suit, gloves and shoes I agree 1000% you should have a fire resistant hoodie.

4- Some of you guys can really be condescending when it comes to a comment you disagree with. I'm going to refrain in posting what I really feel like posting about that.
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Old 08-21-2014, 11:44 AM   #28
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1. True. But if there is any chance whatsoever that a little autocrossing might lead to getting out on the big tracks you might as well prepare for that from the get-go. Ten years (the remaining life of the 2010 spec) is plenty of time to get the track day bug.

FWIW, the SCCA rulebook lists the acceptable SA specs ahead of M, K, and what-not . . . presumably for a reason.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2014 SCCA Solo Rules
4.3 DRIVER’S SAFETY EQUIPMENT
4.3.1 H
ELMETS

Helmets meeting the following standards must be worn while on course:
All helmets meeting the latest or two immediately preceding Snell
Foundation standards (SA2010, SAH2010, SA2005, SA2000, M2010,
M2005, M2000, K2010, K2005, K98), SFI standards 31.1, 41.1, 31.1A,
31.2A, 41.1A, 41.2A or British spec BS6658-85 type A/FR are acceptable.
ALL - Keep in mind that none of the 2000 specs are going to be good much longer.
.
.
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Last edited by Norm Peterson; 08-21-2014 at 12:00 PM.
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Old 08-21-2014, 11:53 AM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Balok View Post
1- The OP was asking about helmets for autocross, not full on tracking.

2- The thread is not about fire protection.

3- If you look at the number of laps turned by cars participating in autocross events and compare that to how many actually crash, my guess is that you can logically determine that there are very few crashes in relation to the number of cars and laps turned in these events across the country.

I also don't think it's a stretch to assume that of that small amount of crashes during autocross events, only a tiny fraction of those would cause a car to burst into flames or potentially have fire as an issue at all. Even if you lost the odds and it happened, you'd probably not be incapacitated to the point you were trapped or unconscious in the car and you couldn't get out before you were burned. I don't see anyone talking about wearing a fire suit and gloves, so I also think it's logical to assume you'd be wearing cotton pants and shirt and I don't see anyone criticizing people for that. If you're on fire and burning that badly that a cotton hoodie comes into play, IMO you're already ****ed. If you're talking about wearing a full fire suit, gloves and shoes I agree 1000% you should have a fire resistant hoodie.

4- Some of you guys can really be condescending when it comes to a comment you disagree with. I'm going to refrain in posting what I really feel like posting about that.
well said.
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Old 08-21-2014, 01:49 PM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Norm Peterson View Post
1. True. But if there is any chance whatsoever that a little autocrossing might lead to getting out on the big tracks you might as well prepare for that from the get-go. Ten years (the remaining life of the 2010 spec) is plenty of time to get the track day bug.

FWIW, the SCCA rulebook lists the acceptable SA specs ahead of M, K, and what-not . . . presumably for a reason.

ALL - Keep in mind that none of the 2000 specs are going to be good much longer.
.
.
Norm
Hey Norm, I don't think anyone's disputing the standard regs about a fire resistant helmet. My comment was in response to criticism of my mentioning a cotton/non-retardant balaclava.
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Old 08-22-2014, 01:13 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Balok View Post
1- The OP was asking about helmets for autocross, not full on tracking.
He later added that he wanted something that would work for track days.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Balok View Post
2- The thread is not about fire protection.
This thread is about a helmet that works for motorsports. Fire protection is one of the 3 primary components that make a motorsports helmet what it is and is part of the mandatory testing for it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Balok View Post
Hey Norm, I don't think anyone's disputing the standard regs about a fire resistant helmet. My comment was in response to criticism of my mentioning a cotton/non-retardant balaclava.
Your choice makes a fire resistant helmet no longer fire resistant and it would now fail every fire test SNELL puts it through. So you're contradicting yourself.
1. Helmet components are tested separately for flame resistance by exposing them to a direct propane flame of a specified temperature for specified time periods. When the flame is withdrawn, each of these components must self extinguish within a specified time limit. FAIL

2. The temperature of the padding or lining materials within the helmet that would presumably touch the wearer's head must not exceed 70ºC. FAIL
3. The chin strap must also be flame resistant. The chin strap will be tested similarly to other helmet components. It must not melt and must self extinguish within the allowed time. --Placing something not flame retardant against it. FAIL.
4. The face shield must not melt down allowing the flame to reach the interior of the helmet. --Flammable stuff on your face. FAIL


Stating there are minimal crashes in autocross and nothing could incapacitate you for any length of time therefore you don't have to worry about safety is rather ridiculous. I've seen fully trained emergency response personnel freeze under bad circumstances. There's also the chance of you hitting something, airbags deploying and dazing you (which is common in these cars in autocross), or otherwise hitting your head. I've struck my head on the roof and been dazed from going off an autocross track because of the lack of clearance. I was disoriented for a few seconds and sat out the next few rounds because of a headache. And yes if someone was dressed improperly for safety then I would say something. Just like I would hope someone would say something to me.

If you think my statement about visiting a burn ward was offensive it wasn't, it was meant to open your eyes to the added risk you created for no reason. Thinking nothing bad will happen because its "only" autocross only tells me you lack experience and are still in the infallibility of youth phase of your life. Its also clear from your posts you have very little background in modding, racing, or safety. Again, not meant to be mean but something I think you should hear. One thing that will never leave me is the smell of burned human flesh and hair. It is a thing that I re-experience in my nightmares but you're rather flippant about the risk. The saddest incidents are the ones that led to death or injury that were easily avoided through some basic foresight and following regulations. Some of the people I know are dead, others horribly disfigured and in pain every day of their life. All because they skipped basic safety regs.

A cheap nomex hoodie is $20, the same price as the cheap stuff. One approved by a racing sanctioning body starts at $45. So whatever the risk level, you've made a conscious decision to increase your risk level for absolutely no benefit even though it doesn't cost you anything extra, add any effort, or add time to do it right. It takes the same level of effort to put on the right gear/clothes as the wrong stuff in the morning.

So if it costs you nothing extra, and makes you safer, and more experienced racers are telling you something why wouldn't you listen? If you don't want to listen to us then listen to yourself.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Balok View Post
I would guess that most people are like me in that we like going to the track and want to be as safe as we can...
...
So with that being said, one aim of this thread is to come up with the safest options possible on a reasonable budget.
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Old 08-22-2014, 01:45 PM   #32
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No ones arguing against safety. I think what Balok is getting at is why argue a cotton balacalava when people arent even putting on a nomex suit. Essentually its hypocritical. I also think that brining up the odds of significant injury during an HPDE/autox as being slim to none is correct. If it wasn't then safety gear of the appropriate level would be mandatory and I've never been to or seen one that requires more than a snell rated helmet. The argument here and on the other thread regarding harnesses and harness bars is so rediculous that it makes us all seem like dumbasses for even thinking of bringing our car on track unless it was fully caged with top notch safety equipment. There is a lot of room between a street car and a race car, anything you do to increase your odds should not be criticized.
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Old 08-22-2014, 04:25 PM   #33
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Originally Posted by White_SS/RS View Post
No ones arguing against safety. I think what Balok is getting at is why argue a cotton balacalava when people arent even putting on a nomex suit. Essentually its hypocritical. I also think that brining up the odds of significant injury during an HPDE/autox as being slim to none is correct. If it wasn't then safety gear of the appropriate level would be mandatory and I've never been to or seen one that requires more than a snell rated helmet. The argument here and on the other thread regarding harnesses and harness bars is so rediculous that it makes us all seem like dumbasses for even thinking of bringing our car on track unless it was fully caged with top notch safety equipment. There is a lot of room between a street car and a race car, anything you do to increase your odds should not be criticized.
I have to agree, especially with the harness bar statement. I know the Brey-Krause harness bar is crash tested and all, but that doesn't mean the speedware harness bar is no good. Cornerspeed had his car tech inspected at an HPD event and his set up passed with flying colors. Custom roll cages aren't crash tested, they're just inspected to make sure the metal is the correct thickness, and the welds are good. Still no roll protection from the Brey-Krause bar though. I'd love to have a set up like Orange Crush's, but that's something I hope to be able to afford for the future. Me personally, I only drive 8/10th on track for safety's sake, and my cars sake. I've never felt like I was over the edge, but I also choose to run a track that has a lot of run off, and you only touch 100mph a few times before you're slowing again. I try to keep my distance when I come up on someone so that I have time to react if they have an off, or do something stupid. I think the organizer of the HPD event has a lot to do with how safe the event is too. My first HPD I had not instructor, and didn't feel that I got very good direction from the people running it. The track had just had the grass cut, and the brake markers didn't get put back. Knowing what I know now, I never would have run. The last track day I did a few weeks ago was the exact opposite. They did a great job with the novice drivers, and if any monkey business went on or even if you went two off you got the black flag. Stuff happens (freak stuff!), but living in the Chicago area I generally feel safer on the track, or at an autocross then I do driving to work.
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Old 08-22-2014, 06:49 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by Synner View Post
He later added that he wanted something that would work for track days.
I see that now, but at the time I posted I only read the OP and quickly scanned the others to see if anyone mentioned RaceQuip. I didn't see them mentioned so I added my post.

Quote:
Stating there are minimal crashes in autocross and nothing could incapacitate you for any length of time therefore you don't have to worry about safety is rather ridiculous.
I never used the word NOTHING! I said, "you'd probably not be incapacitated." Please don't put words in my mouth! There is a big difference between those two assertions.

Quote:
If you think my statement about visiting a burn ward was offensive it wasn't, it was meant to open your eyes to the added risk you created for no reason. Thinking nothing bad will happen because its "only" autocross only tells me you lack experience and are still in the infallibility of youth phase of your life. Its also clear from your posts you have very little background in modding, racing, or safety.
Actually, I wasn't really offended by the burn ward comment, and your post wasn't even necessarily what I was referring to about being condescending. Although your jab about "ignoring safety rules or do[ing] something stupid is that it usually screws the guy minding his own business doing everything right" might have offended me if I took it personally. However, doing so would have required that I am doing the things you mention, and I do not. Therefore, I cannot take offense to something that does not apply to me, even though you may have passive/aggressively meant it as a slap in my face. I chose not to take it that way since it wasn't overtly directed at me.



And while I appreciate the compliment on my youth, it's possible that I'm older than you because I'm nearly 51 years old, but I admit I haven't the foggiest idea how old you are. You are accurate that I'm very new to modding cars, but have been around racing my entire life as I live in the middle of NASCAR country and I know a LOT of people into oval racing on asphalt and dirt.

As for safety, while it qualifies me for exactly dick in terms of motorsports, I happen to be an OSHA 500 Authorized Safety Instructor and regularly teach OSHA 10 and 30 hour classes in the construction industry. I'm also a Journeyman Electrician, so I've seen my share of men burned by arc flashes over the years, so contrary to your supposition with the burn ward comment, I have definitely seen my share of serious burns.

I think that my comment was taken out of context because I was commenting on auto-x, not a full on high speed HPDE event at VIR, Road Atlanta or Barber. In those type of events where you're able to pretty much drive your car as fast as you or your cajones will allow you to drive I agree 1000% as I've already stated. This will be my last comment on this matter.

EDIT: Sorry to the OP for the hijack.

Last edited by Balok; 08-22-2014 at 07:22 PM.
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Old 08-22-2014, 07:23 PM   #35
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No worries man, eyes wide open is my point...
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Old 08-22-2014, 07:31 PM   #36
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I also think that brining up the odds of significant injury during an HPDE/autox as being slim to none is correct.
If you can call the family of the instructor that died a few weeks ago at the local track and say the risk is minimal for HPDE so send your son or grandson next weekend then you have bigger stones than me. My point is a healthy respect for the sport is never a bad thing.

And I fully agree with your last comment.
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Old 08-22-2014, 07:50 PM   #37
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If you can call the family of the instructor that died a few weeks ago at the local track and say the risk is minimal for HPDE so send your son or grandson next weekend then you have bigger stones than me. My point is a healthy respect for the sport is never a bad thing.



And I fully agree with your last comment.

What were the circumstances?
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Old 08-22-2014, 08:35 PM   #38
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Hey Norm, I don't think anyone's disputing the standard regs about a fire resistant helmet.
In my experience, far too many people figure that a helmet is a helmet, frequently without even knowing that different specs exist.

SA is also a multiple impact spec. The helmet I used when I was autocrossing a dozen or so times a season somehow managed to acquire scuff marks that I have no idea when or how they got there. Something had to be close enough such that OE restraints and cloth seats (grippier than leather) weren't enough. But fully SCCA Solo-legal.

FWIW, I've seen at least one car on fire at an autocross (back in the 1970's), and rather more recently a car that ended up on its roof when it got way out of shape toward the end of a slalom. IIRC, there was a passenger, though I don't know if it was an instructor or a guest of the driver.


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Old 08-22-2014, 08:52 PM   #39
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Student went off track and passenger door struck something killing the instructor instantly.
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Old 08-22-2014, 09:13 PM   #40
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Is this the Summit Point incident?
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Old 08-22-2014, 10:34 PM   #41
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Yes
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Old 08-23-2014, 07:24 AM   #42
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I'm not sure if any safety equipment would have helped him in hitting a tree. It also seems as this happened coming out of a 90 degree corner from the reports I've been seeing, real world daily driver speeds involved. This could have easily happened on the street in the rain and had the same outcome. I get it, you can never have enough safety equipment, but when it's your time it's your time.
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