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www.christianedstrom.com
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Discussion Starter #1
The Norwegian motorsport federation has announced that the wearing of a HANS device while rallying will be compulsory beginning in the 2007 season.

Thoughts? I've been very happy with mine, but am always cognizant of weighing the benefits against the cost.

Should HANS be made mandatory?

- Christian

Bjorn Christian Edstrom
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This is a tough one;I have one and I skipped two race weekends to pay for it, Why? Because gee I thought buying some trick part for the car instead of something known to save lives would be silly.

On the cost end: Vintage Auto Racing Association was going to mandate them and guys cried fowl.....till one person reminded a particular driver he was just bragging about his 20K trailer and new 15K race engine.

As for the mobility issue , the only issue I have found is backing up in the paddock you can't turn around and look over your shoulder...not an issue at rally. The track I run most has three 2nd gear hairpins and looking out the window across the track is not an issue.

Should they be mandatory?? I would have to say yes given the speed of cars these days. Perhaps in classes like CRS P stock or production it would be exempt. I will admit that price may be a hurdle for newbies. I spent $872 with shipping. I road race a car worth $4500 tops. The car might hit 90 MPH , I choose to buy one because I can't look my wife or son in the eye and say gee $800 worth of engine mods are worth more than my life to you. As racers we tend to be not well grounded (who in their right mind would spend all their spare cash for a plastic trophy) and this sport is so addicting most people won't spend the money on something that doesn't better their result. So if it weren't for mandatory rules their would still be folks competing with no cages or helmets.
So to some it up; yes mandatory HANS because few racers will buy them on thier own.

SURVEY: other than Christian , John Dillon and myself who else has bought one?


Tom

PS Sorry for being so verbose Christian but I wanted to explain my reasoning
 

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How about this idea:

Have the sanctioning bodies check with the insurance companies who underwrite rallies. Ask the insurers how much we would save on premiums if 100% of our competitors wore HANS. If the resultant premium decrease allows big enough entry fee reductions that would cover the cost of two HANS-type devices after a couple years of rallying, then I'd say make them mandatory.

That said, I'd want some fredom as to which device I bought, and I'd like to use something with good side impact protection.

Jim Cox
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>...most people won't spend the money on something that doesn't better their result.

One way to look at this would be your results at the next event will be better if you're alive.

Just my two cents.

Simon
 

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>How about this idea:
>
>Have the sanctioning bodies check with the insurance companies
>who underwrite rallies. Ask the insurers how much we would
>save on premiums if 100% of our competitors wore HANS. If the
>resultant premium decrease allows big enough entry fee
>reductions that would cover the cost of two HANS-type devices
>after a couple years of rallying, then I'd say make them
>mandatory.
>
>That said, I'd want some fredom as to which device I bought,
>and I'd like to use something with good side impact
>protection.
>

I think Jim has some good points. I ALSO agree that sanctioning bodies should not just jump on the HANS bandwagon without doing some research on what would work best for rally, i.e. something that protects you better in side impacts.

My brothers are testing out the R3, sold by Safe Drives (safedrives.com) and from what I've seen on the research behind it, the R3 does a better job in side impacts than the HANS. But if a sanctioning body says, "no HANS, no rally", and I've got an R3, will I be allowed to rally?

Similarly, there's also the Tucker system out there... There are other, more appropriate choices for rally than the HANS, but since 99% of motorsports in America is road racing or road racing oriented, the HANS is going to be the one that will get pushed the most.

I'm seriously thinking about getting R3s for Mom and I.

No one should be exempt from a safety rules just because their car is perceived as slower. Someone in a Production car could get in just as much trouble as someone in an Open class car. Besides, Mark's Acura has as much hp as some of the slower Open class cars, but since he's in Production does that mean he shouldn't have to follow the safety rules?

AND, there's a discussion going these days locally that organizers are trying to "price out" the "little guys" by the high entry fees. The perception might be one of, "well, now you're trying to make it so the backmarkers who have limited funds anyway won't be able to race", a perception that the organizers (or sanctioning body) are trying to make rally for those that have deep wallets as opposed to those of us on budgets.

Again, what price safety?? Don't skimp on the safety angle!! It's worths missing a couple of rallies if it saves your life.

Anyway. That's my $0.02CDN, and worth what you paid for it! :)

Kt
 

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Well,

With the speed of the cars, and the rate of travel something has to be done to address an issue that isn't being addressed on a large scale.

I'm not a competitor, but I think requiring a HANS like device might be a bit ambitious but is a good idea. Two biggest risks to a competitors well being is rapid decelartion from impact, and side loads.

Anyone with HANS experience, maybe Christian since you would have the most vivid memory, care to comment about how it felt with regards to the side loads in an off, or in general?

I think its suffice to say the mobility restraints may not fully negate the benefits of the device, but I'd be curious to learn more about side load performance on HANS like devices. I think as much or more attention needs to be paid to side impact protection as front impact protection with a device like the HANS.
 

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>The Norwegian motorsport federation has announced that the
>wearing of a HANS device while rallying will be compulsory
>beginning in the 2007 season.
>
>Thoughts? I've been very happy with mine, but am always
>cognizant of weighing the benefits against the cost.
>
>Should HANS be made mandatory?

I'm certainly planning on a HANS for my next helmet setup (my current helmet expires at the end of this year for CARS events).

They have given people more than a year to sort out getting one, which seemss to be a sensible way of implementing it.

I wouldn't object to it becoming mandatory on a reasonable timescale.

BTW - the second hardest crash I've been in was in a P car on snow, so it's not only a 'fast-guys' thing. The hardest one was a head-on with a tree - 40+ mph to 0 in 3 feet.

Adrian
 

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If you hit a rock and you bend a rim, do you know if you need stronger rims or tires with stiffer sidewalls? Could it be possible that you would have bent the rim no matter what brand of rim or tire you had? Is it possible that the problem was actually with your suspension?

What I'm saying is you don't just go throw a rule at it until you know the forces involved.

What I want to see is a comprehensive test of all of the side impact seats and all of the head restraint devices in a test designed for RALLY at 45 to 90 deg. angles to the road at a facility like Wayne State University's WHAMIII impact sled (where the SAE did the testing on the head restraint devices before...but not at high angles to the road).

We agree that we go off sideways. Most of our offs are on the outside of turns, and nearly all of them are very much perpendicular to the road. Why? Because we are rally drivers and we try to "save it" and that means more oversteer.

I have read ALL of the SAE test reports on head restraints and have not seen any comprehensive data for the usage that we are most likely to use them for.

I don't know where the funding would come from, but FIA, Rally America, NASA, BTRDA, BRC, and every other rally organization in the world NEEDS this information to effectively make decisions about such equipment. Now.
 

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Kristen I would say that HANS or similar product be mandatory. As for the comments about P-stock I was thinking aloud if it were my choice I would say all cars.We cater to Budget guys at our event so I always try to think about how things affect them, of course if your dead it's hard to take advantge of any cost savings.
I bought a HANS because I could invision looping the car in the rain and a car slamming into me at 90-100 MPH. Similarly I can envision driving a P-stock car down a 50-100 ft ravine...the stop at the bottom would be quite rapid. So after falling even 30ft I think car would be traveling plenty fast enough to kill you. My thing for all the safety gear is that when your upside down 3 ft in the air that isn't the time to be thinking "maybe I should have bought a ------- device "

On a final note the wife and I are going through our financial plan: of which redoing our life insurance is a part.....the underwriter knows I have a HANS Device and it made a differance in rates


Tom
 

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www.christianedstrom.com
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Discussion Starter #10
In my recent experience, I was using the Recaro ProRacer SPG HANS seat, which incorporates side-impact head protection wings. My head bounced back and forth between the wings like a pinball between bumpers. But it never moved more than 1 inch in either direction. I grade the seat an A+.

There was no major frontal impact that I recall, and I think the seat wings took the majority of the side forces, so I can't say anything specific about the HANS regarding side loads in this accident.

Generally about the HANS's performance in the accident, I'll say this:

1) It _may_ have kept my head further back and deeper within the protection of the seat wings.
2) It did not impact my immediate egress out of the car at all.
3) It did not impact my ability to tighten my harnesses sufficiently.

I did not remove my helmet/HANS until after I exited the car.

All in all, I am totally satisfied with the HANS/Recaro ProRacer SPG HANS combination's performance in the accident.

Hope this helps,
- Christian

Bjorn Christian Edstrom
www.christianedstrom.com
 

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Adrian just an FYI , the anchors bolt to your helmet. Put them on the old helmet then undue them and mount them on the new one. My Helmet will be replaced for 06 as well.

Tom
 

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If we are heading towards a mandatory head and neck device, I would like to see all head and neck restraints researched for what is best in a rally car.

From my limited research, HANS devices were not the best at protecting impacts from the side. D-CEL, Simpson, and Hutchens all seemed to be better at 45 degree impacts. Also, it seems a harness based system, attached to you, would allow quicker exits from the car, which would be beneficial to rallyists.

It seems there are more devices on the market every day, including a very different than the others Isaac Device. I'd hate to see us adopt a particular one, only to find a product better suited to rally.

Also, would renting these devices be practical for people entering only a few events a year?

Russ Rosendale
 

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HANS mandatory?

>Should HANS be made mandatory?


Make them mandatory. Then everyone will feel invincible, so they can go even faster.... until they die.

While your're at it... Why not require a foam-filled cockpit cocoon with an ejection system too?

God forbid anyone should lower rally speeds! Just keep throwing smoke, mirrors, and Band-Aids at the real problem..... SPEED.
 

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And don't forget the seat either. I would think requiring both the seat and the HANS would make the most sense, not one or the other. Personally I don't know that I think either should be mandated at this point in time. I guess to a certain extent I'm old school (and definitely old ;( ).
 

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For those that haven't seen the slow-mo of our off at MFR with the HANS devices on, please take a look on our site in the downloads section::

www.lastditchracing.net

Dave has a side head restraint seat and I do not. You'll see why I will in our new car. It's not so much that my head moves towards Dave on impact, but that my head stays stationary and the car moves to the left under me. Same end result. It's not where it should be.

The tethers on my HANS go tight at least twice before we stop. There is a short version with slo-mo and the off is featured in the full length video at the end with a bit more of a run up to it. We were in the top of third gear, or at least near it. Figure 60-80mph.

It's hard to say what the HANS will provide us in a perpendicular accidient/90 degree. I don't think much.

I think the side head restraint seats and the HANS are the best combo out there, but I'm biased because I use a HANS.

The problem with our cars in side impacts with solid objects is that there's no significant crush zone between us an the outer door skin. Look at a NASCAR cage and you'll see the driver is relatively further away from the side protection than we are.

Regards, John
 

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>All in all, I am totally satisfied with the HANS/Recaro
>ProRacer SPG HANS combination's performance in the accident.

With all due respect, Christian, this makes for great anecdotal evidence, but cannot take the place of an actual test.

I want to see data from each head restraint device in a standard seat, each head restraint seat, and each combination of both at 45, 60, 75, and 90 degrees to the direction of travel along with a control test with no devices and a standard seat.

We already have data for 0-30 degrees.

I am first to jump when it comes to life saving equipment. I have thrown away more than 5 helmets in my motorcycle days because I took just one digger on them...no cracks. I replace my belts after every impact/roll. I even invested in a fire system for my new car and had the cage FEA tested. I just want to make sure we are turning the right knob when we are trying to fix this one.
 

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straight at T
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>
>Adrian just an FYI , the anchors bolt to your helmet. Put them
>on the old helmet then undue them and mount them on the new
>one. My Helmet will be replaced for 06 as well.
>
> Tom

I would, but I've almost certainly run my last event this year.

Adrian
 

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>
>SURVEY: other than Christian , John Dillon and myself who else
>has bought one?
>
>
Kim and I have them for over a year now. Don't even notice them in the car, except when I take a run off and have to back up. I felt it was very effective last fall when we head on'd a tree at 75mph, but my codriver, Alan Perry, wasn't wearing one and felt fine as well, so take that for what it's worth (it should be noted that Alan was reading and his head was already down at the time of impact, so that might have helped). After a crash at OFPR this year, one codriver told me the hook actually bent on his HANS, and those things aren't what I would consider light. Must have been some serious energy there. He reported to be sore, but otherwise okay.

Based on my experience, I don't think the full effect can be harnessed without a proper sidewing seat, especially in a rally car. That doesn't mean it's useless, just that the proper seat will make it even better.

All that being said, I'm with Lurch. Until we see some quantitative testing done, I don't believe it should be a requirement. I do believe it should be STRONGLY recommended, but not required. I'd like to see somebody take the bull by the horns and get rally specific testing done. Perhaps if we pooled the competitors and all the NA sanctioning bodies together we could get together the cash. Personally, I would chip in something like $50 towards getting the sled tests done.

Dennis Martin
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920-432-4845
 

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Requiring them "because XXX did it" is foolish. First of all, contact the Norwegian rally club and find out their reasoning. If they say they tested the devices for rally (as I have outlined) then great...go for it. If they (as I suspect) are throwing water on a fire (not knowing if its a wood or gas fire), then let's do the research and figure it out.

I'll help you. Here are the titles that Rally America/NASA needs to buy from SAE asap to learn if they don't own them already. Go to www.sae.org for most:

SAE-2004-01-3516 2004
Sled Test Evaluation of Racecar Head/Neck Restraints Revisited
Melvin, John W. Wayne State Univ.

SAE-2004-01-3513 2004
Race Car Nets for the Control of Neck Forces in Side Impacts
Tom Gideon General Motors Corp. - General Motors Racing

SAE-2002-01-3351 2002
Integration of HANS device within Formula One
Mellor, Andrew Transport Research Laboratory

SAE-2002-01-3306 2002
The use of dashpots in the prevention of basilar skull fractures
Baker, Gregg General Technical Properties

SAE-2002-01-3304 2002
Sled test evaluation of racecar head/neck restraints
Melvin, John W. Wayne State Univ.

SAE-2001-01-2659 2001
Importance of seat and head restraint positions in reducing head-neck injuries
Mehta, Bhavin V. Ohio Univ.

629.231 V61 2002
Role of the seat in rear crash safety
Viano, David C

629.23 M91 1998 V.1 1998
Predicting the response of a CART car driver in a crash using mathematical modeling
Weerappuli, D. P. V.

629.2136 S79 1994 1994
A three - dimensional head - neck model Validation for frontal and lateral impacts
de Jager, M. Sauren, A. Thunnissen, J. Wismans, J.

629.23 M91 V.1 1994
Mathematical simulation of driver and restraint systems in racing saloon car impacts
Grant, Matthew

Clarke, T.D., Smedley, D.C., Muzzy, W.H., Gragg, C.D.,
Schmidt, R.E., and Trout, E.M., ?Impact Tolerance and
Resulting Injury Patterns in the Baboon: Air Force Shoulder
Harness- Lap Belt Restraint?, ?, Proceedings of the
16th Stapp Car Crash Conference. Society of Automotive
Engineers, November 1972, SAE 720974.

Gideon, T.W., Streetz, L.M., Willhite, S., and Melvin,
J.W., ?ATD Neck Tension Comparison for Various Sled
Pulses?, 2002 Motor Sports Engineering Conference
Proceedings, Society of Automotive Engineers, December
2002, Paper No. 2002-01-3324

Gramling, H., Hodgman, P., and Hubbard, R., ?Development
of the HANS Head and Neck Support for Formula
One?, 1998 Motor Sports Engineering Conference
Proceedings, Society of Automotive Engineers, December
1998, SAE 983060

Hopper, R.H., McElhaney, J.H., and Myers, B.S., ?Mandibular
and Basilar Skull Fracture Tolerance?, Proceedings
of the 38th Stapp Car Crash Conference. Society of
Automotive Engineers, November 1994, SAE 942213

Melvin, J.W., Little, W.C., Jedrzejczak, E.A., and Pierce,
J., ?Racing Car Restraint System Frontal Crash Performance
Testing?, 1994 Motor Sports Engineering Conference
Proceedings. Vol. 1: Vehicle Design Issues, Society
of Automotive Engineers, P-287, December 1994,
pp. 73 ? 80, SAE 942482

Melvin, J.W., Baron, K.J., Little, W.C. Gideon, T.W. and
Pierce, J., ?Biomechanical Analysis of Indy Race Car
Crashes?, Proceedings of the 42nd Stapp Car Crash
Conference. Society of Automotive Engineers, November
1998, pp. 247-266, SAE 983161.

Melvin, J.W., Bock, H, Anderson, K, and Gideon, T, ?Development
and Field Performance of Indy Race Car
Head Impact Padding?, Stapp Car Crash Journal, Vol.45
(November 2001), pp. 415-436, The Stapp Association,
Paper No. 2001-22-0019.

Melvin, J.W., Begeman, P.C., and Foster, C.D., ?Sled
Test Evaluation of Racecar Head/Neck Restraints?, 2002
Motor Sports Engineering Conference Proceedings, Society
of Automotive Engineers, December 2002, Paper
No. 2002-01-3304

Mertz, H.J., ?Anthropomorphic Test Devices?, Chapter 4
in Accidental Injury: Biomechanics and Prevention, edited
by A.H. Nahum and J.W. Melvin ? 2nd Edition,
Springer-Verlag, New York, 2002

Thomas, D.J. and Jessop, M.E., ?Experimental Head
and Neck Injury from Inertial Forces?, Chapter 12 in
Mechanisms of Head and Spine Trauma, edited by
Sances, A., Thomas, D.J., Ewing, C.L., Larson, S.J., and
Unterharnscheidt, F., Aloray Publisher, Goshen, NY,
1981

Knee-jerk reactions to unfortunate events are not the answer. Reasoned, educated decisions weighed on our likely usage is in order.
 

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Discussion Starter #20
>With all due respect, Christian, this makes for great
>anecdotal evidence, but cannot take the place of an actual
>test.

Oh, good god yes, and that's all I intended it to be! Especially as the accident we had was of pretty moderate violence. What I do think is important is that I was in no way impeded by the HANS, as some people have speculated that one might be.

Actual sled testing of the equipment is imperative. Anything I can do to help advocate for it, I'm happy to! I'd offer to contribute $500, but knowing the costs, that won't go far.

- Christian

Bjorn Christian Edstrom
www.christianedstrom.com
 
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