• Short Summary

    Weird film about testing crash helmets - very high standards but "these standards are saving lives!"

  • Description

    Guildford, Surrey.

    C/U shot of ball bearings being poured into a canister. M/S of the canister hanging from the chin strap of a crash helmet, testing its endurance. This is one of the tests "a helmet has to survive to gain the British Standards Institution Seal."

    A woman's hand takes one helmet and the documentation on which the helmet was placed. Among the helmets which are chosen to be tested are prototypes, production models sent by manufacturers and samples picked randomly during on the spot checks.

    High angle shot of different crash helmets on a table. There follows a succession of shots of different tests. Voiceover explains procedures and the outcome of these tests.

    M/S of the woman (assistant Sheila Thomas) placing the helmet on the scale to weigh it. High angle C/U shot of the helmet on the scale. After weighing, helmet is squashed, watered, hit, pressed, and if it fails any of the tests - rejected.

    Filmed helmet failed a 'heavy impact' test. Piece of carbon paper wrapped in plain white paper was placed inside the helmet. Helmet was placed on a 'dummy head'. Then a 4 lb. steel ball was dropped on it from the height of four feet. This has to be repeated three times: at normal temperature; after being heated to simulate the effect of hot weather; after the moisture test. If, after all this, the carbon is visible through the white paper - helmet fails the test. The paper from the filmed helmet was blue.

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  • Data

    Film ID:
    Media URN:
    Colour pictorials
    British Pathé
    Issue Date:
    HD Format:
    Available on request
    Time in/Out:
    01:35:43:00 / 01:37:49:00
    CP 049

Comments (1)

  1. Unknown user says

    This footage was recorded at Ellis Research & Testing Laboratories Ltd., based in Albury village near Guildford. Early British Standards for helmets were contracted to Ellis Research prior to the BSI building the test facilities at Hemel Hempstead. In later years Ellis Research became Albury Laboratories Ltd. Helmet testing continued at Albury until the rigs and apparatus was dismantled (by myself) in 1982.

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