Category Archives: helmet

Prevention By Frustration?

When wearing of helmets for motorcyclists became mandatory in 1973, business boomed for retailers of helmets.  The headgear protected the riders, but also gave them a new headache – THEFT!

Folks who were naïve enough to leave their helmets attached to the side locks on their mounts would find them gone in no time.  The alternative would be to lug along these cumbersome spherical “shells”wherever they ventured on foot, after dismounting.

I was not ready to be encumbered. So, I fashioned a galvanized iron cover to fit my trusty Honda C70 Kapcai (the cover had a hinge too), and then relocated the helmet lock from its default position to the side of the basket (that came along with the bike) to secure the cover. 

I figured my “invention” would deter a potential thief as it would frustrate his efforts at getting the bounty.

Headstart On Safety

Long time ago, almost all motorcyclists in the country rode around with wind in the hair.   Foolish exuberance or headstrong foolhardiness ?  No one bothered to think about it.  That was, until 1973, when a law was enacted to make wearing of helmets compulsory.

If I remember correctly, Expandite was the first off the mark, and produced a “half-shell” model, with the memorable bird logo (I thought it was a penguin).   Got SIRIM approval some more!  But to many people – I included (was a handsome 18 then) – it was Ugly !  No way that white tempurong was going onto their heads.

So despite the headstart it got, Expandite soon ran into strong headwinds posed by other mighty brands like Centurion, Shoei, etc.