1

Everything I've found online discussing this has focused on the benefits and dangers of attaching a metal mount to the helmet, on which a flashlight would be attached.

I'm using a soft mount (specifically paracord), and I was unsure if the flashlight itself presented a hazard in a crash.

Here is a shot of the flashlight and how it's attached:

external photo of mounted flashlight

Front view, showing placement. It's offset so it's aimed a bit better at were I'm looking.

front view of helmet

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    Nice lashing job – paparazzo Oct 24 '17 at 23:06
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    I'm looking at that impressive ropework, and its not reallty a "breakaway" point. That lashing will tear through the helmet before it parts. I wonder if lighter weight cotton would be better? Velcro with hook on the helmet, and loops on the torch might be best, using a secondary tie to prevent it being lost by accident. – Criggie Oct 25 '17 at 2:43
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    @DavidRicherby I have similar- while riding in a comfortable position the tight beam lands on the road around 3-5 metres ahead of me. If I want to light something up, I have to look up a little, which is a conscious action. In practice, it works well and doesn't dazzle anything unless I deliberately do it (which is rare but not impossible.) But this is being street-safe, and not answering the asked question "is it safe (for the rider) to torch on helmet" This could be a separate question... "how do I set up my lights optimally for safety and vision without impinging on other road users?" – Criggie Oct 26 '17 at 23:51
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    @mattnz I don't think this is a dupe of that question. This question seems to be asking specifically about attaching a flashlight to the helmet with cord, whereas the other seems to be asking whether any system can be safe. – David Richerby Oct 29 '17 at 22:45
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All of the mounts from reputable manufacturers thatI’ve looked at are either rubber or Velcro or have a quick release that’s designed to tear free on impact.

Paracord is incredibly strong - some have a tensile strength of over 200 kg /550 pounds.

The concern is that your head might hit an object (such as a low tree branch) and the light or mount will snag on it, whipping your head and neck back. The neck vertebrae don’t like this motion.

Also, in an accident the helmet is designed to slide along the ground preventing torque to the head. Your paracord might also snag and cause the helmet to torque your head.

Note it would take a freak accident for this type of injury to occur. An individual might be fine with accepting this type of risk personally. A manufacturer who has domestic assets that could get seized in a lawsuit might not be willing to accept the risk, thus they err on the side of caution. On this forum, we can’t say “it’s fine” — that’d be negligent but we could say that many people would find the risk acceptable but ultimately it’s your call.

Tl;dr: ideally, you’d want your mount to have a full break-away design.

  • So the loop I made with the extra cord so I can hang it off my handles without messing up my strap fitting is probably a pretty bad idea unless I can rework it so the loop is inside the helmet when not in use? – Morgen Oct 24 '17 at 23:20
  • More relevant question: can you point me towards further info? Your reasoning seems solid, but I'd like to reconcile it with the vents in my helmet and the various decorations on kids' helmets which seem to present similar risks – Morgen Oct 24 '17 at 23:27
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    I’d look at the linked duplicate question and answer. It’s much more detail than I go into. – RoboKaren Oct 25 '17 at 3:36
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    In a country where wearing a helmet is compulsory this could be seen as an unauthorized modification of the helmet and the certification of said helmet has become void. – Carel Oct 25 '17 at 13:31
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There are many helmet mounted lights available in the market. Yes, as @Paparazzi mentioned, this should be fine. I personally find this makes the helmet slightly heavy and prefer handlebar lights.

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    While handlebar lights are useful (I have one), they don't serve the usecase I'm interested in here: shining light were I'm looking instead of were I'm going. Reading street signs is one example. – Morgen Oct 25 '17 at 6:15
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    I have a helmet mount light as well but it has a tear away design, as do all of the other reputable companies. Yes you can get one from an importer with a solid mount but that doesn’t make it a good idea. – RoboKaren Oct 25 '17 at 14:03

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