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Need to replace my body armor -- Dainese vs. POC vs. ?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 

I don't race anymore, but I still prefer skiing with light body armor.   I protect the sides of my hips with baseball slider shorts (great if you lose an edge on hard snow), and wear a short (rib-length) Dainese mesh jacket (over my base layer, but under my ski jacket) with protective inserts for the forearms, elbows, and upper arms (it's very light and comfortable).  But the mesh is starting to sag, so it's probably time to replace it.  Given that I've twice injured my ribs/spine from impact with trees (not seriously --  just enough to sideline me for a few days and leave me sore for a few weeks), I thought maybe this time I should get something with a spine/back protector.

 

Here are some obvious choices, along with info. I've been able to glean thus far.  Note that all of these are listed for skiing, except the Rhyolite, which is designed for mountain biking.   Any suggestions?  I'd of course particularly like to hear from those that have worn both brands. 

 

DAINESE:

 

SOFT PROTECTION:

 

Rhyolite Soft Jacket
http://www.dainese.com/us_en/rhyolite-jacket-soft-19857.html
Among the Dainese gear listed here, this one is the lightest and provides best freedom of movement. Spine protector is certified to absorb as much energy as one in Manis (CE2), and has shoulder/elbow protection equivalent to Action/Evo/Manis, but adds rib protection (Action/Evo/Manis just cover spine).  However soft padding doesn't do well if object is not broad (e.g., a protruding rock).  Also, soft spine protector doesn't breath as well as hard ones in Action/Evo/Manis.  And material for jacket itself is not open breathable mesh like in Action (likely b/c. it's designed to be worn on the outside when mountain biking, so it has to be tough and snag-resistant).  Finally, not sure if the "posture" of this is good for skiing, since it's designed to conform to someone hunched over handlebars.

 

HARD PROTECTION:

 

Action Full Pro
http://www.dainese.com/us_en/action-full-pro-73264.html
Mesh material breaths better than material used in other Dainese's, spine protector is longer.  But spine protector only certified to CE1, and is less flexible (b/c less articulated) and breathable than Evo/Manis.  Lacks upper arm protection, but shoulder/elbow/forearm protection identical to Evo/Manis.  More freedom of motion than Evo and Manis, but less than Rhyolite.

 

Ultimate Jacket Evo http://www.dainese.com/us_en/ultimate-jacket-evo-73262.html
Spine protector is CE1, but offers better protection than Action (but less than Manis, which is CE2), and is non-removable.  Adds hard chest protection (identical to that on Manis), which I don't think I need, and it's not removable.

 

Manis Jacket Pro

http://www.dainese.com/us_en/manis-jacket-pro-73283.html
Offers best protection of all Dainese's. Spine protector is CE2 and is more flexible, more breathable, slightly shorter, comparable in width, and a bit thicker than that on the Evo. Same shoulder, elbows, chest, humerus.  Also, back protector can be removed from Manis, but not with Evo.  Has mesh

 

 

POC:


These are identical, except the first is entirely soft, while the DH adds hard protection over the elbows.  Spine protectors are certified EN-2.  Can't tell if spine protector is wider (and thus provides more rib coverage) than those on Dainese's.  Material for jacket looks more like that on Rhyolite than on Action, but haven't handled any of these in person.

 

Spine VPD 2.0 Jacket http://www.pocsports.com/en/product/1392/spine-vpd-2-0-jacket

 

Spine VPD 2.0 DH Jacket http://www.pocsports.com/en/product/1520/spine-vpd-2-0-dh-jacket


Edited by chemist - 9/29/15 at 11:36am
post #2 of 17
post #3 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ZeroGravity View Post
 

Slytech also makes a full jacket type - http://slytechprotection.com/product/jacket-multipro-xt/?cid=292


Thanks, but I'd like to know how it feels in use vs. these others.  Also, I think I'd prefer one with a zipper for easy on-off.

post #4 of 17
I think that POC spine protectors are more or less as wide as the equivalent product from Dainese...as for how much protection against impact is offered, I don't know, but I guess that it is always a matter of balancing comfort and protection (e.g. it depends how much comfort one is ready to trade-in for protection and safety)
One thing that I am starting to consider is how much protection the cervical part of the spine is getting and how. So far I have seen an add on to the back protector offered only by POC (and a coggicean - terminology nd spelling needed here - region add on as well).
post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobody View Post

So far I have seen an add on to the back protector offered only by POC (and a coggicean - terminology nd spelling needed here - region add on as well).

I asked one of the companies (Dainese, I think) about tailbone protection, and they said you won't get that from a spine (back) protector, since it would have to be way too long and thus ungainly.  Tailbone protection is instead something that's built into the shorts.

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobody View Post

I don't know, but I guess that it is always a matter of balancing comfort and protection (e.g. it depends how much comfort one is ready to trade-in for protection and safety)
 

Sure, there's a tradeoff of comfort and protection, but I'm still hoping to hear from someone that has worn both brands who can give me a comparative real-world use assessment of how they compare for breathability and freedom of movement.

post #6 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by chemist View Post
 

I asked one of the companies (Dainese, I think) about tailbone protection, and they said you won't get that from a spine (back) protector, since it would have to be way too long and thus ungainly.  Tailbone protection is instead something that's built into the shorts.

 

I am not talking about a back protector extending that far down and up.

I am talknig about "add-on" to plug into a back protector, check here

http://www.pocsports.com/en/product/1259/cervical

and here

http://www.pocsports.com/en/product/1260/coccyx

 

These two are compatible with the POC line of back protectors and vests (the Spine line)

Quote from site about the "cervical":

Quote:
 You can easily attach it to the Spine VPD range products.

And about the Coccyc:

Quote:
 Coccyx snaps onto the Spine Ergo Back shield just as easily as the Cervicial...

While I'd agree with you that the tailbone protection is best left to the task of the ad-hoc shorts, I have yet to see any other brand to offer some sort of cervical protection.

Something I am really in need now more than elbow and forearm protection, I don't want to end up like some sort of middle age armoured man limiting my mobility to an excessive level to gain protection, after all I do not race, I freeski only.

The ideal protection for me would be a vest which covers the fore lover portion of the side trunk (lower ribs and sides...), the back including shoulders and cervical.

Dainese offers a vest with soft padding covering that, except the cervical. And I do not think that I can attach the POC product to the dainese vest...

post #7 of 17

Dainese waist coat :

http://www.dainese.com/it_it/waistcoat-soft-flex-man-20217.html

 

I tried that at a shop and found it snug and comfortable at the same time, not limiting movements at all. A pair of internal suspenders to pull the back protection even tighter might be adviceable, imho, there is already the waist internal velcro strap, after all.

Of course, if there were a similar Hard option...without too much loss of mobilty...or maybe an armor like the one of that Ironman guy...why not!


Edited by Nobody - 10/30/15 at 3:51am
post #8 of 17

POC air bag vest. 

 

 

 

Saw this on one of the articles in EpicSki home page. 

 

http://www.epicski.com/a/top-5-fridays-ski-season-underway-new-drone-services-innovations-from-poc-and-more

post #9 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingGrump View Post
 

POC air bag vest. 

 

 

 

Saw this on one of the articles in EpicSki home page. 

 

http://www.epicski.com/a/top-5-fridays-ski-season-underway-new-drone-services-innovations-from-poc-and-more

Yep, Dainese as well was testing a similar concept and I think it will be used by the WC downhiller (and maybe Super -G) sooner or later (maybe not this season, but I read it has been approved by F.I.S. , as well as the Briko Volcano helmet, so I guess it's just a matter of time). As of now, I have yet to understand if it is being sold b yDainese, no trace of it on their site (but you can buy the motorbike version, unfortunately, that one needs a connection to the motorbike itself, I understand, whereas the skiers version relies on accelerometers and microprocessors to determine is one is "just" jumping in the air or taking a tumble).

post #10 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobody View Post
 

Dainese waist coat :

http://www.dainese.com/it_it/waistcoat-soft-flex-man-20217.html

 

I tried that at a shop and found it snug and comfortable at the same time, not limiting movements at all. A pair of internal suspenders to pull the back protection even tighter might be adviceable, imho, there is already the waist internal velcro strap, after all.

Of course, if there were a similar Hard option...without too much loss of mobilty...or maybe an armor like the one of that Ironman guy...why not!

I "rummaged" trhough the Dainese site and found at least three version of that vest with different shields, from the hard one on the back and the soft one in the front, to a harder than soft but not yet completely "hard" in the back (called pro, hybrid and so on, check it out).

post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by KingGrump View Post
 

POC air bag vest. 

 

..........

 

Saw this on one of the articles in EpicSki home page. 

 

http://www.epicski.com/a/top-5-fridays-ski-season-underway-new-drone-services-innovations-from-poc-and-more


Neat -- I knew about Dainese's airbag, but not POC's.   Dainese has been working with the FIS on this since 2011, but the fact that POC has joined the effort should accelerate development and acceptance.  This Feb. 2015 article from the New York Times has an interesting discussion of the subject:  http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/10/sports/airbag-is-approved-but-ski-racers-are-largely-shunning-it-for-now.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&module=second-column-region&region=top-news&WT.nav=top-news&_r=1

 

It will be interesting to see if the technology trickles down for us.  The WC skiers need the sensors to distinguish jumps and hard vibrations from falls.   By contrast, as free skiers, we'd need the sensors to distinguish routine falls from bad ones (wouldn't want the airbag deploying everytime we took a tumble).  Plus maybe add a voice activation for "OH SH*T!"


Edited by chemist - 10/31/15 at 12:14pm
post #12 of 17

Now to your direct quest to ask for real test and experience on the snow with either, I haven't tried the POC ones, but I have skied with a motocross waist protection ( with plastic "hard" scales covering the lumbar section of the spine)  since the mid '80s of last century, due to a motorcycle accident I had then, where I broke a lumbar vertebral bone (L1, IIRC) and consequently suffered of a weakening of the lumbar muslce section. Using that protection made me feel, well, protected and "sustained" at the waist. 

Skiing with a hard backpack (Boblbee from Sweden) I do not use the back protector, but from time to time I "borrow" the one my son has, a Dainese back protector soft flex man model, and except for the warmest of the days, don't suffer much sweating, it seems to me it allows my back to breath enough. My son, otoh, sweats a lot when it uses it. But I guess that goes with youth...

I am curently planning to replace the boblbee backpack, since weight has become a concern, with an airbag equipped freeride model, to be used when freeriding only, and so, a waist coat or a back protector to be worn while skiing without backpack in the everyday resort skiing will become also necessary. To use a soft one, would probably allow me to don the back pack and the waistcoat at the same time without too much hassle...

I will research the option and see...

post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobody View Post
 

Dainese waist coat :

http://www.dainese.com/it_it/waistcoat-soft-flex-man-20217.html

 

I tried that at a shop and found it snug and comfortable at the same time, not limiting movements at all. A pair of internal suspenders to pull the back protection even tighter might be adviceable, imho, there is already the waist internal velcro strap, after all.

Of course, if there were a similar Hard option...without too much loss of mobilty...or maybe an armor like the one of that Ironman guy...why not!


Nice.  I'd like to continue to have arm protection as well, so I narrowed it down to the following:

 

Dainese Rhyolite Soft jacket: http://www.wiggle.com/dainese-rhyolite-soft-jacket/

Ortema Ortho-Max jacket: http://www.touratech.com/en/singleview/article/ortema-ortho-max-dynamic-protector-jacket.html

POC Spine VPD 2.0 jacket (which actually doesn't look that comfortable): http://www.pocsports.com/en/product/1392/spine-vpd-2-0-jacket

 

I know one racer who compared the Ortema, POC, and Slytech back protectors, and rated them Ortema>POC>>Slytech for comfort.

 

If you have  a chance to go back to that Dainese store (I see you're in Italy!)  I'd be interested to hear what you think of the Rhyolite (either the jacket or the vest) by comparison to the waistcoat.

 

I spoke to a mountain biker at Dainese USA, and he recommended the Rhyolite soft as comfortable (offering more mobility than any of their hard protection jackets) and reasonably breathable (he wears it mountain biking in the summer, so it should be OK for skiing).  Though he said its soft back protector is not as breathable as their hard ones, and its fabric is not an open mesh since, while that would work fine under a ski jacket, it would be too delicate when worn on the outside for mountain biking; my current Dainese protection is open mesh, and it's very comfortable.  


Edited by chemist - 10/30/15 at 10:52am
post #14 of 17
Thread Starter 

BTW, Hovding (http://www.hovding.com/how_hovding_works)  makes a helmet airbag for cyclists that protects both the head and neck.  It's worn around the collar, and inflates upon impact.  Unfortunately, it only works once -- you need to send it to the company for replacement.  That would make it unsuitable for recreational skiers.   But maybe it would be useful on the World Cup -- for instance, if it inflated on top of a regular helmet.  Depends whether the increased size would place too much torque on the neck, balanced against the additional neck and head protection it would provide.

 

Youtube video of the Hovding in action:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOolESrCcBw

 

 

 

 

post #15 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nobody View Post
 

Yep, Dainese as well was testing a similar concept and I think it will be used by the WC downhiller (and maybe Super -G) sooner or later (maybe not this season, but I read it has been approved by F.I.S. , as well as the Briko Volcano helmet, so I guess it's just a matter of time). As of now, I have yet to understand if it is being sold b yDainese, no trace of it on their site (but you can buy the motorbike version, unfortunately, that one needs a connection to the motorbike itself, I understand, whereas the skiers version relies on accelerometers and microprocessors to determine is one is "just" jumping in the air or taking a tumble).


I've been following this the past couple of years. Dainese will be supplying several professional team members (US, Italy and a couple of others, I believe) with their version this season. It was approved by the FIS last season, but no one really used it. 

 

POC just introduced its version a couple weeks ago and will have it on some team members this year, too. POC says it will sell it through select retailers next fall - don't think Dainese has announced any plans to do offer a retail version, but I reckon if POC does, it'll follow suit.  

 

The FIS suggested to the NY Times last winter that it might make the tech mandatory once there's more selection to choose from (i.e. not just Dainese). I know there's another French company (Helite) that was working on a similar design a few years back but haven't heard anything new from them. Both POC and Dainese have done wind tunnel testing and say that there's no aerodynamic affect, but until it's mandatory, I think a lot of skiers will be scared off. 

 

The tech itself is really cool, but not sure it's going to be useful for regular Joes, who might set it off on a low-speed, non-threatening fall and find it more a pain than it's worth (especially for whatever exorbitant price they charge for it). 

post #16 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by chemist View Post
 

BTW, Hovding (http://www.hovding.com/how_hovding_works)  makes a helmet airbag for cyclists that protects both the head and neck.  It's worn around the collar, and inflates upon impact.  Unfortunately, it only works once -- you need to send it to the company for replacement.  That would make it unsuitable for recreational skiers.   But maybe it would be useful on the World Cup -- for instance, if it inflated on top of a regular helmet.  Depends whether the increased size would place too much torque on the neck, balanced against the additional neck and head protection it would provide.

 

Youtube video of the Hovding in action:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NOolESrCcBw

 

 

 

 


I'll do you one better. This German start-up wants to design a full-body cocoon that you could fall off a building with: 

 

http://www.igel-systems-protect.de/index.php/en/isp-the-invention/injuries-from-falling-video

 

The Europeans like their airbags! 

post #17 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by chemist View Post
 


Nice.  I'd like to continue to have arm protection as well, so I narrowed it down to the following:

 

Dainese Rhyolite Soft jacket: http://www.wiggle.com/dainese-rhyolite-soft-jacket/

Ortema Ortho-Max jacket: http://www.touratech.com/en/singleview/article/ortema-ortho-max-dynamic-protector-jacket.html

POC Spine VPD 2.0 jacket (which actually doesn't look that comfortable): http://www.pocsports.com/en/product/1392/spine-vpd-2-0-jacket

 

I know one racer who compared the Ortema, POC, and Slytech back protectors, and rated them Ortema>POC>>Slytech for comfort.

 

If you have  a chance to go back to that Dainese store (I see you're in Italy!)  I'd be interested to hear what you think of the Rhyolite (either the jacket or the vest) by comparison to the waistcoat.

 

I spoke to a mountain biker at Dainese USA, and he recommended the Rhyolite soft as comfortable (offering more mobility than any of their hard protection jackets) and reasonably breathable (he wears it mountain biking in the summer, so it should be OK for skiing).  Though he said its soft back protector is not as breathable as their hard ones, and its fabric is not an open mesh since, while that would work fine under a ski jacket, it would be too delicate when worn on the outside for mountain biking; my current Dainese protection is open mesh, and it's very comfortable.  

chemist,

 

This was a little over two weeks ago and you may have made your decision by now, however, I wear these both mountain biking and skiing.  Both are comfortable and offer great range of motion.  Unfortunately the one I find most comfortable has no zipper.  But the IXS is pretty darn good as well.   

 

IXS Assault jacket ( Downhill Mtb and SkiCross) Heavier ( Great ventilation and adjustability, protection is unbelievable,  heavier at 1500grams, back armour initially annoying on chair)

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/ca/en/ixs-assault-jacket-2015/rp-prod34187

 

Troy Lee Designs (soft)  ( downfall to this is no zipper)  (Enduro/ All mountain mtb and GS) ( Breathable, light, comfortable, good protection, all around amazing product...except its hard to get off at the end of the day.

http://www.chainreactioncycles.com/ca/en/troy-lee-designs-upl7855-hw-long-sleeve-shirt-2015/rp-prod82726

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