What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash yesterday...owner for 1 week

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artistgloria
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Well, nothing like a little rock and roll on a scooter to make one feel humility!
I've not owned this moped for very long and I've been just driving around the complex and the quiet neighborhood to get accustomed to the operation of this nice little moped.

I was in on the road and went up the curb to practice driving on a sidewalk as opposed to streets where the traffic is pretty busy. I hope to be able to always take the quiet residential streets anyway, which should be safer, but, I want my skill set to be able to handle all sorts of events.

So, there I am, going along on a rather narrow sidewalk and boom! I am on the street, about 6 feet over from where I'd been driving and two guys are there helping me up. I must have landed on my left palm as that hurts like heck, but, oddly, my scooter as on my left ankle, yet, my right leg is torn up with a gash of about 12 inches and another about 6 inches about that with my knee having a nice raspberry with the whole lower leg swollen. I was a volunteer EMT, so I do know when I need to go to the doctor and I know I'm fine, just battered and bruised.

It was so very fortunate for me that there was no traffic, however, and I didn't break anything. I must have gone over the front of the bike, I think? I don't know, and guess I'll keep working on my skill set!

Finally, the question I have for all of you...

What gear do you wear?

I am definitely getting an helmet.
I'd appreciate your suggestions on this.

Do you wear knee pads, elbow pads when just riding on the side streets or in parks?
I'd feel a bit foolish, but, safety for myself and others is the most important thing.

And, do they make training wheels for the Gelato Moped?

My husband said I should ask that one. Seriously, do they make some for these that could be placed into the hole where the pedals are? It'd be odd, but, heck, I'd do it until I make sure I can handle this roaring ball of fire I bought! ;)

Thanks, again! You are all so great! :)
ArtistGloria
http://bellagela.blogspot.com/

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Mik
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

I wear the best I can somehow afford.

It does not matter if you fell of a superbike or off a scooter when your skin starts to interact with the asphalt.....

Because it is rarely cold where live I use a BMW "airflow" suit, gloves and boots. It costs less than 3 days in hospital.

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artistgloria
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Mik, you have been such a gentleman in your help and offer up such great advice. Thank you!

Well, I am going to get some knee pads, elbow pads and an helmet right off. I should have had one already, but, I've only been practicing around the complex and just out to the quiet residential streets nearby.

There's a big black and blue patch on my leg and both knees are scraped as well as my left hand and right shoulder. I think I must have gone over the front of the bike and it landed on my left leg.

After looking at youtube.com and their crazy videos, I know how fortunate I am that I wasn't hurt worse. The fast that I landed about 10 feet from where I was indicates I really did take a tumble and I really wasn't going fast at all. As you said, you don't need a powerful bike nor to travel very fast.

The lesson...wear gear, no matter what.

Thank you,
Gloria

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IBScootn
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Gloria,

I second Mik's response about protecting your skin and head. There is a lot of skin on you besides your knee and elbow that can get some bad road rash so instead of pads you might look into a mesh motorcycle jacket and some protective jeans. You can get these cheap off Craigslist or on-line through discount motorcycle apparel stores. Regarding a place to practice your skills, some of the places that train motorcyclists to pass the Basic Rider Course (waives the DMV tests) also have courses for scooter riders. The class trains you in general control of the bike, emergency stops, and swerving. I highly recommend these courses for the beginning rider.

Be careful out there,

James

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MikeB
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Hi Gloria,

After riding fast scooters for a few years, and wearing proper motorcycle gear, riding a bicycle with standard bicycle clothing (including bicycle helmet and gloves) actually scared me. As you found out, even a fall at 10-20mph can do quite a bit of damage.

So, first rule: always wear motorcycle gloves. No matter what else happens, you're going to try to put your hand down to catch yourself, and you want some type of leather palm to protect your hand. You probably don't need the gloves with hard knuckle armor, but get at least the lightweight motorcycle gloves with a reinforced palm.

Second rule: always wear a helmet. Again, protect the most vulnerable part of your body. I know most scooter riders like the open face 'jet' style helmet, but dragging your chin on the pavement, or running it into a curb, means total reconstructive surgery on your face and jaw. I'm a fan of the Nolan N43 Trilogy helmet, since it's pretty light and open but still has a protective chin bar. I also suggest getting a helmet in bright yellow or orange. Your helmet is probably the most visible part of your body when on the road, and loud colors are an important tactic in making sure other cars can see you. I shudder every time I see a flat black helmet on the road.

Next is a jacket. I live in a hot state, so I have a ballistic nylon mesh jacket for use in the summer. These are designed to provide abrasion resistance in case of a fall, and the better ones have armor at the elbows, back, and shoulders. You can get mesh jackets with insulated and waterproof liners and wear the same jacket year-round, or you can have a 2nd jacket for cold weather use. And again, bright colors are good for a jacket, since they help you be seen. I have an Olympia MotorSport jacket in silver for summer, and a RoadGear one in yellow for winter use.

Good shoes are important, but you probably don't want to go all the way into motorcycle boots. I have a good pair of leather boots that are comfortable to walk in, but still provide a little bit of ankle protection.

Pants are also useful, but I'm a bit lax here. I never wear anything less than jeans, but jeans won't hold up for more than a few seconds of abrasion. You can get reinforced jeans, with Kevlar or steel threads protecting the knee and butt area, which are better. The best is real motorcycle pants with armor, and I've got an Olympia MotorSport pair that matches my jacket, but I usually don't wear them unless I'm doing a longer trip on the interstate. Most motorcycle pants are black for some reason, but wearing black pants in the summer sun is just asking to bake, so I found a pair that is silver.

Mike

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mf70
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

What MikeB said. Always gloves and full face helmet.


(they run small)

Wear the jacket, pants, and shoes if you don't want to deal with road rash. Road rash on your chin and face, however, is NO FUN and expensive. So is hand surgery.

Skirts are negatively safe; beyond flying up just when you want some padding, they can do a Marylyn Monroe at the wrong time. Ask my wife.

Floating skirt

Mark

marcopolo
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Hello Gloria,

Firstly, let me express my sympathy for your fall. It's great to hear that you recovered quickly, and that you are riding only on quiet residential streets.

Anyone who has ever read the road accident statistics for two-wheeled traffic, would never ride on a freeway again! But then we are an adventurous, risk taking species!

Consider this when dressing for the road: Even is your are travelling at 18 mph, on your little moped and a car, driven at a sedate 38 pmh, just clips you, the combined impact will be 56 mph! Now the laws of physics say that as you leave the bike, you will start to accelerate, and depending on you size and weight will be travelling at over 66 mph, within a few feet!

Sadly, anything you hit,(or hits you) will be made of a substance much harder than the structure of the human body!!! The illusion that you are only riding slowly in a quiet area,is just that, and illusion! Research the Road accident statistics of your own state and see how dangerous those quiet streets really can be!

Most of the year I live in Australia. In most states helmets are compulsory for all two/three wheel traffic, even bicycles.(including Bears on unicycles). In Australia , two-wheel traffic is only about 4% of all road users, yet riders constitute nearly 40% of fatal or serious injuries.

The only really effective jacket any two-wheeled rider should be wearing is a product developed in the USA, by Impact Jackets (US) Inc.

The Impact Jacket is basically a jacket fitted with airbags, and although not unique, is the only one of its type that will deploy fast enough to be really effective.

This incredible product can be found on the IPJ website. The website advises, the product will soon be available in the UK, Brazil, and Europe. This type of Jacket should be compulsory for all riders.

Good gloves, boots and leggings are also invaluable.

Enjoy, and keep safe!

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mf70
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Breath deep big fella! I accept your statistics, but not your conclusion.

First: the laws of physics do not require that all scooter accidents be head on collisions, thank heavens. In fact, I have HAD a head-on while riding a bike, and it wasn't too bad: I was above the height of the hood, and merely rolled over the car.

In fact, all scooter accidents DO involve coming to a stop on something that wasn't planning on touching the pavement. That's why the abrasion resistant gloves and jacket are so important. They also always DO involve ending up on the ground from a riding position. Unless you have a head-on with a truck or hit a wall, the energy to be dissipated amounts to a drop of about four feet. Paradoxically, this is about the same amount of impact from any two wheeler: bike, scooter, or motorcycle. The primary difference is how far you slide.

Finally, unfortunately, the human head cannot withstand a four foot drop onto pavement. That is why a helmet is so important. In my collision above, I wasn't wearing a helmet (it was a long time ago in a different age), but I landed on my backpack rather than my head, so all I got was a broken collarbone. In the event, however, you don't get to choose.

I notice that Impact Jackets (US) Inc. is based a few miles from my house; I'll have to drop over there some time. Incredibly, their video shows a rider wearing an inflatable VEST and bare arms! (Since one use is for equestrian use at FAR slower speeds but higher impact potential, I can see how they became complacent about the bare arms.)

Mark

marcopolo
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

mf70 wrote:

Breath deep big fella! I accept your statistics, but not your conclusion.

Ok, I accept that each collision/impact/accident has different dynamics. Thank goodness you were lucky. but had you bounced off the hood of the car into the path of another vehicle, events would have had a far more serious outcome! My illustration was meant to convey that it doesn't matter how safely you ride, you share the Highway with larger and less careful vehicles.

The protection afforded by the Impact type jackets (with Kevlar/woven nylon sleeves) is an invaluable investment. As Mik pointed out, the cost of a protective jacket is much cheaper than a stay in hospital!

When I was younger,(what am I saying, I'm still young!) I loved to ride my Triumph Trident down the long winding coastal highway to the surf beaches. the idea of protective clothing was laughable, like not drinking and riding.

How life changes, my new wife insists I wear all the protective clothing, sigh...even on commuter trips around town, (Vectrix)or longer trips, (Honda Goldwing). Sad.She probably thinks I'll catch cold! (I'd buy a harley but I'm at the age where you look ridiculous)...but I digress. What made me really safety conscious was visiting the daughter of a family friend hospitalised with a serious injury acquired while riding pillion at a relatively safe speed in a quiet suburban street. Since she is only one year older than my own daughter, it gave me cause for reflection.

When I think of all the times my daughters ridden with me, in heavy city traffic wearing a helmet, but just a thin top,or school uniform, it makes my shudder with guilt at how lucky I've been.

The President of Impact Jackets, Charles Paige, is a really great guy, ex-military very passionate about his product.

Ride Safe.

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Boyd6944
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

The hemet that I bought was a linx made by bell, its full face but the face piece can lift up.

marcopolo
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Boyd6944 wrote:

The hemet that I bought was a linx made by bell, its full face but the face piece can lift up.

Yes, indeed a full face helmet is the way to go! but you must be careful, not all full face helmets meet safety standards.

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Easy Rider
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Crashed yesterday on e-bike. Broken clavicle, 2 broken hand bones, multiple bruises, lacerations and severe scraps on back, knee. Will be laid up for months. Was wearing a helmet which don't believe protected my head... large knot on forehead. either get a full riding protective suit or safer yet, just don't ride. I haven't decided. Truly loved riding but this gives great pause. Wearing protective suit would seem to lessen the enjoyment. May sell bike. Feedback please.

MEroller
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Easy Rider wrote:

Wearing protective suit would seem to lessen the enjoyment.

Not really. It simply adds some complexity to the preparation for and debriefing from a ride with the bike. But it would have saved you almost all of your bruises, though maybe not the bruised ego. I wear protective "armour" that simply goes OVER my normal clothes, not a standalone suit. The former is simply far more practical and takes a maximum of about 1 minute to get on and off. That is time I gladly invest. The riding itself is just as fun, and the ride is more confident, knowing that IF I should run into mayhem, I will be FAR better off than without that additional protection.

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Easy Rider
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Thanks for reply.... Can you post a brief example (web page) of your type suit/wear. Such a huge variety. Again, Thanks for replying. Nice to hear from someone who wears gear and feels "more confident."

MEroller
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Yes, the variety is really huge. Therefore it is highly advisable to personally go to a large motorcylce parts/wear shop and get someone knowledgable to lead you through the process of choosing what "suits" you best. Here are pretty close examples of what I ride with. I prefer textile over leather, as I ride in all conceivable weather conditions. First the pants:
Pants
They should have knee and hip protectors and fit over the normal leg wear.
For the top I have jacket similar to this one:
Jacket
It is windproof and to a degree also water-resitant, has protectors in the back, for the shoulders and the ellbows + lower arm.
If you buy the two together in a matched set it should be possible to easily zip the two together to ensure they both stay in place in case thier protection should become imminently necessary. I bought them one after the other so cannot do this, but both have a very good fit around the waist and thus have always stayed where they should when I needed them. But of course I had no high speed fall yet, as that would usually render the protective clothing a total wreck. My falls where always at very low speed, and my set did not suffer any bruises from them yet...

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My rides:
E-Sprit Fury (basis is the ZAP/Erider Thunder 5000) since May 03, 2011. Mods: Battery temp. gauge and battery heating (off the grid and off the battery), Kelly KEB72801X, reverse activated, luggage rack with topcase, HC Cycle Analyst, Emsiso BMS2405, 35mm² battery cables - repaired again :-)

QvR vR one: a Swiss package of pure understatement - innocent and to some eyes (from some angles) exceedingly ugly looks, but with raw and hardly containable electron power up to real 95 to 100km/h! And a literally rock-hard suspension due to a carrying capacity of twice it's unladen weight...

MEroller
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Oh, and I forgot to mention: my jacket also has a removable inner lining which makes it suitable for a big temperature range. As my legs are pretty well protected from the wind the pants don't have nor need such a feature.

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My rides:
E-Sprit Fury (basis is the ZAP/Erider Thunder 5000) since May 03, 2011. Mods: Battery temp. gauge and battery heating (off the grid and off the battery), Kelly KEB72801X, reverse activated, luggage rack with topcase, HC Cycle Analyst, Emsiso BMS2405, 35mm² battery cables - repaired again :-)

QvR vR one: a Swiss package of pure understatement - innocent and to some eyes (from some angles) exceedingly ugly looks, but with raw and hardly containable electron power up to real 95 to 100km/h! And a literally rock-hard suspension due to a carrying capacity of twice it's unladen weight...

Easy Rider
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Thanks MEroller... I am thinking I still want to ride again. I will be getting protective wear. Not cheap but the alternative is not viable. Just minor distraction from steering then I over-corrected. Was going downhill fast and got thrown off bike. Chilling to think my injuries could have been worse. Have heard from others whom say they were maimed by their own wreck. Peace & Love, ER

JasonTaylor
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Easy rider thanks for you post. All you want to do is heal right now and I wish more people would post from your position to warn others. What lessons can you offer us? Some DOT helmets are just too hard. What helmet did you use?

The knot on your head. Did you have a headache afterwards? Like next day?

I wear special gloves I made myself as I can’t buy them in any stores.

The question of which jacket to get would be best answered in a motorcycle racing forum. Just a leather jacket, but am looking for good racing jacket. So expensive.I don’t know what Cordura is. Ballistic nylon sounds great. No idea though. I really wish there was a dominant brand everyone used that was cheap and good. I’m tempted to get this
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TqfDm3CWEm8 but the michelin man (airbag jacket) does seem good. I wasn’t able to find a crash test of a dummy on a motorcycle hitting a brick wall or car or anything though. The one I saw on you tube was at 15 mph. Lame.

Thanks again for posting. Any more details about how to have avoided the crash, parts of crash injuries etc would be welcomed. Hospitals can make you unhealthy too. Heal soon.

Jason

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Easy Rider
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

I was wearing this helmet
IMG_0001.JPG
Actually the first time I looked at helmet since accident. Seems helmet did take some of the impact. But my head still smacked pavement at point below gouges on helmet.
No other safety wear. Just t-shirt & sneakers. Have to vote for a full faced helmet before I ride again. I read in another forum were another rider lost front wheel. Bike forks dug into pavement and ride went over handle bars. That rider said lost front teeth and part of lips.
I found the following images of downhill bicycle racers gears/looks... (mind you I was not "downhill racing" but was hitting fast speeds.)
full Helmet.JPGbodysuit.JPG
I like the helmet in left image, and the body armor in right image.
Would have considered this overkill for pleasure riding, but after my accident I MUST say I have a change of mind. Now the question becomes "do I want to have to put on all this gear before I go "pleasure riding"? To me, I see now that a fall/wreck is a fall/wreck regardless of it being a pleasure ride or downhill racing!
I have been "snake bit" so to speak, don't let my wariness spook you. As I sit here now typing one-handed (because my other arm is casted and slung) I say to you all, Do Wear Good Protection!

Easy Rider
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

BTY, I did have a headache right after the wreck but not the next day. I am on codeine. The swelling from the head blow has slowly creep down and blacken both of my eyes. The broken clavicle and hand bones hurt the most. The ripped flesh from road burn is painful and I have to walk slow because of my knee hurting. With insurance, I still spent 150 at the ER and will have pay my deductible. They took MANY x-rays, plus more visits to the orthopedic for continued x-rays. Would have better spent the money on protective wear!

mf70
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

Here's what my wife wears:

It was moderately priced, and does the "chin thing."

Mark

mf70
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

(The "Edit" button is gone...)

This is marketed as a "pit crew" helmet by Bell. Sizes run very small.

JasonTaylor
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Re: What Gear do you wear? Had my first crash ...

easy, on the 1st pic. a bottom view would allow one to see how useful the styrafoam was in absorbing the impact. was it even crushed at all? seems not but can't tell from this angle. perhaps it is too hard?

on the bottom pic, just wanted to say the bottom helmet is the best. for fashion that is. and that's just about all. nobody gets boinged on the top of the head imo.

jason

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