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      10-03-2011, 05:09 PM   #1
Malakas
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Lightbulb Safety first: anyone have the Safety Solutions R3?

Unfortunately, there seems to be too many posts about serious injuries lately (on other boards). From Rennlist: "A horrible crash happened in Europe which reportedly claimed the life of the GT2RS driver due to a broken neck. From the photos it looks like the car spun into the Armco and then into the gravel trap where it tripped and began to roll with enough force to break off three corners of the car."

I would love to have racing seats and harnesses in my M which would allow me to have a HANS, but that is just not in the cards for me right now. I am intrigued about the Safety Solutions R3 because evidently you can use the device with the standard 3-point belts.



Just wondered if anyone here had any experience with it...
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      10-04-2011, 01:28 PM   #2
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Nobody eh?
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      10-04-2011, 03:04 PM   #3
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I talked to a guy at the track who had one and he was pretty happy with it.
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      10-04-2011, 05:05 PM   #4
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Its nice -- and supposedly a 'better' system then HANS, since it does not rely on the tension of the belts to keep your head from flying forward.
They are becoming more popular in the Pro community.
The only complaint so far (in the club racing community) is the 'suiting up' and comfort.
Its alot of gear to be wearing with your nomex underwear or cool-shirt .. and Full Race Suit .. then this.
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      10-04-2011, 07:47 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mastek View Post
Its nice -- and supposedly a 'better' system then HANS, since it does not rely on the tension of the belts to keep your head from flying forward.
They are becoming more popular in the Pro community.
The only complaint so far (in the club racing community) is the 'suiting up' and comfort.
Its alot of gear to be wearing with your nomex underwear or cool-shirt .. and Full Race Suit .. then this.
Which pro is wearing an R3? I wasn't aware of a pro sanctioning body which allows anything other than the HANS??
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      10-05-2011, 06:49 AM   #6
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I have it as well. My main issue is comfort. The human spine is curved and does not run down straight, but the device does, which causes a pressure point against my spine. So, I wrapped a rag around it, and it works. I recommend it for people in street cars, and use it when I instruct. I switch to a Hans device in the race car though. I am pretty sure the R3 is SFI approved.
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      10-05-2011, 10:28 AM   #7
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Any issues with using a Hans device in a air-bag equipped car?
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      10-05-2011, 11:00 AM   #8
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I can't think of any. All it does is restrict the travel of your head relative to the base of your neck
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      10-05-2011, 01:02 PM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lucid View Post
I have it as well. My main issue is comfort. The human spine is curved and does not run down straight, but the device does, which causes a pressure point against my spine.
That was my question: it seems as if it would be very uncomfortable in the car - not to mention what it would do to the seats...

They mention on the site that it comes with a "foam insert" for the seat back which I assume has a cut-out for the device.
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      10-05-2011, 01:09 PM   #10
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Although they could have designed it better, I'll take the discomfort over the possibility of a broken neck. And, AFAIK, there is no alternative that works with a 3-point belt.

It works with some seats better than others. It is fine with the E92 M3 seats. You might want to wear something over it to protect the leather. Yes, it comes with a foam insert that has a carved section in which the device fits, but I don't see how you would attach that to your seat firmly (so that it doesn't slide) without damaging the leather.
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      10-06-2011, 12:03 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by turbo8765 View Post
Which pro is wearing an R3? I wasn't aware of a pro sanctioning body which allows anything other than the HANS??
Ya -- I think theres a small Pro organization called NASCAR that sanctions it
http://www.stockcarracing.com/techar...s/viewall.html

"The SFI 38.1 requirement has been adopted by NASCAR and many other racing series and is useful because if the restraint system you use complies with it, you can be assured that it will help your head and neck withstand impacts that could otherwise be fatal. The test is so rigorous, however, that some devices designed for the previous 50g standard, such as the original Hutchens design, won't pass. Ashline still sells the Hutchens-with the Kevlar upgrade-because it is one of the most cost-effective units on the market and many racers prefer it. "The Hutchens still works," Ashline says. "I have reams and reams of test data that proves it will help a driver in an accident, so I will sell it to someone if that's what they want. Sometimes that's all they can afford. But they should be aware there are models available, such as the R3 or my Hutchens Hybrid, that offer even more protection."
HANS Device Hutchens Hybrid

Safety Solutions sells five different head-and-neck restraint systems for adults. All are designed to fit different needs and fit different budgets. The Hutchens Hybrid, the Hutch II, and the R3 all meet SFI 38.1 standards. The original Hutchens Device and the D-cel also offer significant protection but are not SFI 38.1 certified. The HANS Device is also certified."
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      10-06-2011, 01:35 PM   #12
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I have one and run about 15 events per year. I have no issues with comfort at all. The first time you use it its noticable then you just get used to it. I bought it because you never know what type of car your student has and this works with stock belts or a harness
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      10-06-2011, 02:04 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mastek View Post
Ya -- I think theres a small Pro organization called NASCAR that sanctions it
http://www.stockcarracing.com/techar...s/viewall.html
."
I have zero interest in nascar, actually less than zero, so no surprise I missed that one. Thanks for the clarification.

I disable my airbag while wearing the HANS. Note my track car only has a single airbag for each occupant. If you're wearing the HANS then you should be firmly strapped into a harness (5 or 6 pt). Frontal airbag activation wouldn't hurt anything, but it wouldn't help either, and that's one less thing you would have to replace in the event of a crash. I suspect side impact airbags are still beneficial.

If I had to ride on track in cars with 3 points, I would definitely buy an R3.

The primary purpose of HNRs in general, and in particular the HANS, is prevention of basilar skull fractures. Not neck fractures.

I saw a very interesting table when I was researching which HNR to buy. IIRC it listed longitudinal and lateral neck loads, and provided an injury risk score for the HANS, R3, Hutchins, and no HNR. It was interesting. The R3 was on par with the others, and I believe it was superior to the HANS with respect to lateral loads.
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      10-07-2011, 08:52 AM   #14
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Basilar skull fracture risk is interesting if true; I didn't know about it. You can still hurt your neck though--if not break it. It's happened to people I know. One is probably at increased risk with a pre-existing injury like a herniated cervical disk, etc.

I saw that comparison table when I bought my R3 device on an R3 device related website, but it wasn't the safety solutions website. Then I called up safety solutions and asked about their association to that website, and they didn't know anything about it and were surprised that it existed (the website, not the table). I don't know, maybe the they acquired a patent, and the old website was associated with the original inventor, etc. It is no longer around as far as I can tell. But my point is that is the only reference to some test result that compares R3 to HANS that I was able to locate. Currently, the satefy solutions website makes similar claims about side impacts without any references.

Without seeing outcomes of conclusive independent studies, I'd be skeptical as HANS type devices that work in conjunction with harnesses seem to be norm in pro racing series. Having said that, their defficieny in dealing with side impacts might be mitigated by other safety gear such as seat (halos extensions for instance) and cockpit elements (in some open wheeled cars).
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      10-07-2011, 10:07 AM   #15
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Neck fractures are certainly possible but when properly restrained ligamentous injuries are more common. I've seen a lot of neck fractures secondary to motor vehicle accidents, but they're almost always unrestrained occupants who were ejected. From what I've read, basilar skull fractures were the leading cause of fatalities in motorsports (i.e. properly restrained, wearing a helmet), in cases where the initial crash was not survived, prior to the use of HNR devices.

Hopefully someone can dig up that table and provide a bit more information about who performed the studies.

I chose the Hans with a halo seat because that's the most prevalent configuration in motorsports. I try to believe that safety products are used in motorsports because they're the most effective in all cases.

If I had to ride in a car with 3 point on track, the R3 would be a given.
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      10-07-2011, 10:22 AM   #16
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Thanks for all the responses and the great discussion. As stated above if I had a track-only car (fingers crossed) I think a Halo seat + HANS is a solid way to go. I would love to see that table mentioned above...

For me however, having made a promise to the finance minister (read: wife) to not have a track dedicated car for a couple years - I'm strongly thinking about the R3. I realize my mostly stock M3 is not exactly a mega horsepower Viper ACR - but last year after seeing a M-coupe do a tank slapper UP the oval at TWS and then smack the wall - I'm not sure anyone can have enough safety.

To the owners: how cumbersome is it to put on and off?
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      10-07-2011, 10:39 AM   #17
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I haven't had any issues putting the R3 on and off. You just need to clip the chest straps together after positioning it, and then of course the helmet straps. Doesn't take any longer than putting on the HANS.
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      10-07-2011, 10:40 AM   #18
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I think I was there that weekend too, as I recall it was a bad bimmer weekend ...it was my first in the M3 and there were 3-4 BMW wipe outs , it was pretty freaky.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Malakas View Post
Thanks for all the responses and the great discussion. As stated above if I had a track-only car (fingers crossed) I think a Halo seat + HANS is a solid way to go. I would love to see that table mentioned above...

For me however, having made a promise to the finance minister (read: wife) to not have a track dedicated car for a couple years - I'm strongly thinking about the R3. I realize my mostly stock M3 is not exactly a mega horsepower Viper ACR - but last year after seeing a M-coupe do a tank slapper UP the oval at TWS and then smack the wall - I'm not sure anyone can have enough safety.

To the owners: how cumbersome is it to put on and off?
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      10-09-2011, 06:49 PM   #19
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I've been wondering about this as well. The Schroth Quickfit Pro harnesses are designed to work with the stock seats & a Hans device, so that is another option (supposedly the harnesses will be certified for the E92 soon & this should be an option for next year). The Hans has been criticized for not providing lateral support which is provided by a halo seat or nets in a dedicated track car.
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      10-10-2011, 09:42 AM   #20
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BSF is definitely the #1 reason for HNR's. Thank The Intimidator for the explosion in interest, even though the problem was known long before that

There are good lateral support HNR systems out there that perform as well as "full containment" and side nets. A halo seat is all well and good but in some impacts it can't do diddly because you still have to be able to see out of the thing. Same with side nets. It's a good idea to limit how far the head can travel but they're not a silver bullet and the HANS offers basically zero help in a side or diagonal impact. HANS has been making a good living at cornering the HNR market at the expense of racer safety and pocketbooks but that's a whole other rant. Hell I'll probably buy one this fall thanks to the SFI spec being adopted by SCCA but I don't have to be thrilled about it.

Doesn't matter how fast your car is, 30+ G can happen in any kind of serious crash and dead is dead whether it's a civic or a chapparral
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      10-10-2011, 12:17 PM   #21
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Quote:
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There are good lateral support HNR systems out there that perform as well as "full containment" and side nets.
Can you be more specific? What are you currently using?
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      10-10-2011, 04:50 PM   #22
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More info here: http://forums.bimmerforums.com/forum...y+solutions+r3
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Let me get this straight... You are swapping out parts designed by some of the top engineers in the world because some guys sponsored by a company told you it's "better??" But when you ask the same guy about tracking, "oh no, I have a kid now" or "I just detailed my car." or "i just got new tires."
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