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From digest.v7.n1291 Thu Mar 12 13:59:51 1998
From: James Moran <>
Date: Thu, 12 Mar 1998 10:56:26 -0500
Subject: Re: Motorcycle shop for helmet?


You got it right for the most part. Just a couple of minor clarifications:

SA rated helmets are have a fire retardant liner. M rated helmets have no requirement to be fire retardant.

M rated helmets generally have a larger eyeport for better visibility on a bike.

I believe an helmets rated SA90 or SA95 are required for BMW CCA Club Racing, but not for drivers' schools (at least by the national organization). The National Capital Chapter requires M or SA rated helmets, 85 or later for autocrosses, 90 or later for drivers' schools. Our drivers' school application reads, "Full face helmets with a Snell SA90 or SA95 rating are strongly recommended. The minimum acceptable ratings are Snell M90 or M95."

The Snell site is excellent. It provides both certification and testing criteria for helmets.

Jim Moran
'88 M6

> From: Marc Plante <>
> Time for the annual helmet thread,
> Actually the Snell foundation that tests helmets uses different criteria
> to rate Motorcycle helmets ("M" rating) versus Special Application (EG
> auto racing helmets ("SA" rating) Essentially, the motorocycle helmets
> are engineered to take one good whack, while SA helmets are designed to
> maintain their protection through a series of knocks like you would get
> bouncing around in a crashing or rolling car.
> Different chapters in the BMWCCA have local rules about whether they
> allow M rated helmets, and you can get away with an M helmet in local
> autocrosses, but I think that both the SCCA and the BMW National rules
> stipulate "SA" rating 90 or better (e.g. don't buy something dusty and
> old at a garage sale).
> You can get details of testing criteria at the Snell homepage at:
> Did I get that right, Mr. Moran?
> Marc Plante
> E36 325i, 89k
> Alexandria, VA

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