By Jim Pruner
I recently wrote a review of the Bell SRT Modular helmet that was, in my eyes, pretty standard wBW quality and unremarkable.
Originally it had been assigned to one of our other reviewers before being passed to me which again seems unimportant. Looking back now a couple of months later I’m on the verge of calling it fate, destiny or maybe just good fortune.
Perhaps that sounds a bit melodramatic, but the way I wrote that particular review coupled with our Content Editor Cam’s follow up efforts led to the two of us visiting the Snell Memorial Foundation in Sacramento, California.
If it sounds like I’m basking in the glory of doing such a great job on the review that it prompted the invitation, that’s not the case. The truth? It was my inability to get some important facts straight (ineptitude?) that can be given the credit.
That realization makes me chuckle, but hey… I’ve always been more often lucky than good so it’s nothing new!
The Squeaky Wheel Gets The Grease
I’ve been thinking a lot about why most modular helmets aren’t Snell rated for some time now. Click on that link to see Cam’s article he wrote based on the learning we received on the visit to Snell.
My consternation has been coming out in several of my helmet reviews and in any conversations I’ve had with helmet manufacturer representatives.
I had some theories about it in mind:
- Maybe it’s because integrated sun lens/visors necessitate having a void in the EPS foam layer creating a weak spot often exposed during the impact/penetration testing?
- Maybe the chin bars won’t stay shut during impact testing?
- Maybe Snell standards have risen to unreasonable levels?
- Maybe Snell just prefers Arai full face helmets?
I’m not sure why I didn’t just reach out to someone at Snell directly via email or phone …read more