Lazer KinetiCore (Ep.112)

Lazer’s new KinetiCore technology is meant to protect against rotational impacts while being lighter, cooler, more comfortable, and using less plastic than other systems, including MIPS — and its design is very clever in its simplicity. So on Bikes & Big Ideas, we sat down with Lazer’s Chris Smith to get the rundown on what KinetiCore is, why Lazer developed it, how helmet testing standards work and how they might fall short; the Lazer KinetiCore lineup (including the Jackal KinetiCore that we’ve just started testing) and a whole lot more.
Lazer Jackal KinetiCore Helmet

Rotational impact protection in bike helmets has deservedly gotten a lot of attention in recent years, and MIPS has long been the pioneering technology in that space. But Lazer thought there was a lighter, more comfortable, more breathable way to accomplish the same goals, and developed KinetiCore to do just that. And so we sat down with Lazer’s Head of Marketing for North America, Chris Smith, to get the rundown on what KinetiCore is supposed to do and how it does it; why Lazer went to the effort to develop their own technology; helmet testing standards and safety; and a whole lot more.

TOPICS & TIMES:

  • KinetiCore design goals (1:37)
  • Helmet testing standards around the world (14:22)
  • KinetiCore design details (22:45)
  • Virginia Tech’s helmet testing & KinetiCore helmet lineup (26:15)
  • Jackyl KinetiCore MTB helmet & Accessory mount safety (35:28)
  • Chris’ Big Idea (46:34)

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2 comments on “Lazer KinetiCore (Ep.112)”

  1. I can’t help but feel very concerned by this reliance on the VT tests to determine/verify the safety rating. While the VT tests are more likely to reflect real world scenarios, designing a helmet around the tests in the way that Lazer is describing sounds more like designing a helmet to maximize a score, losing sight of the potential pitfalls in the methodology. For one, reading the VT testing methodology, I find it concerning that they test around a single headform. While I understand that this normalizes the testing results across multiple helmets, this doesn’t seem to account for potential changes in the performance of the helmet not only between different shapes of heads, but also different sizes of the same helmet.

    • Hello Aaron, thanks for your post.

      I understand your concern. While Virginia Tech is the only 3rd party testing currently available for the testing of direct and oblique impact there is a legitimate point of discussion that helmet some manufacturers may be designing a helmet to pass a specific test as opposed to testing for “real world” conditions. Honestly, I think this is probably already happening with the current certification tests used globally for direct impact (CE, CPSC, AUS).

      What I can tell you is that, as opposed to building a helmet to pass a specific test, Lazer has done an extensive amount of internal development and in-house testing in the design and engineering of the KinetiCore protection technology. Computer rendering, prototype and pre-production design and direct and oblique drop testing were all done within Lazer in order to fully test KinetiCore’s ability to reduce the risk of injury from impact. While I am not able to go into detail on this matter, the results from Virginia Tech were used to validate some of the internal testing that Lazer had been conducting but were not the only metric used to determine the effectiveness of KinetiCore technology.

      Thanks again for your post and for listening to the podcast.

      Christopher Smith
      Lazer US Marketing – Shimano North America
      csmith@lazersport.us

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