Quantcast

Body Armor Rental - What about this idea?

mplutodh1

Monkey
Nov 27, 2002
744
0
Sammamish, WA
I was just asked about what I thought about this idea. Let me know what you think.

A lot of riders around here want to ride the shore, or whistler, or local trails even but know that they probably should have body armor. For someone who wants to "try" the whole whistler or DH thing going out and buying $180-$350 body armor and using it once or twice is really unpractical. I also see a lot of racers not wearing armor and a lot say they cant afford it.

So what about this:

Shop in Bellingham who is your standard local bike shop. They do all the regular stuff in addition to body armor rental. Knee/Shin, Forearm/Elbow, chest, padded shorts. Its on the way to Whistler for all the PNW folks or anyone driving from this side of the US. It would work for races too, PNW racers could rent armor and take it to the races...

What would be a good daily rental cost? Any ideas on this or suggestions?
 

jimmydean

The Official Meat of Ridemonkey
Sep 10, 2001
41,099
13,287
Portland, OR
Originally posted by BurlySurly
i think bowling shoes are gross enough.
I would agree. Have you ever smelt your own suit after a long and hot day? If you can't stand your own funk, how could you handle someone elses?
 

buildyourown

Turbo Monkey
Feb 9, 2004
4,832
0
South Seattle
Yeah, the whole hygene thing is an issue. I don't even like putting my own dianese on because it stinks so bad. I can't imagine if there was the combined funk of multiple users. And remember, you can't machine wash dianese, which is why mine only gets washed once a year.
 

El Jefe

Dr. Phil Jefe
Nov 26, 2001
793
0
OC in SoCal
Rider's thoughts- Multiple riders' stench imbedded in armor that, if I actually need to use it to save my body, will suffer damage which I may have to pay for.

Shop's thoughts- It'll cost a lot to clean this stuff and keep it in good condition...one good fall could rip a sleeve and make it unrentable.


I say it's a nice thought, but not a good business idea. I guess discounts on purchases, or rental fees put toward a new armor purchase could pay off to some degree, but I doubt the upkeep on the suits would be worth it.
 

mplutodh1

Monkey
Nov 27, 2002
744
0
Sammamish, WA
Originally posted by buildyourown
Yeah, the whole hygene thing is an issue. I don't even like putting my own dianese on because it stinks so bad. I can't imagine if there was the combined funk of multiple users. And remember, you can't machine wash dianese, which is why mine only gets washed once a year.
I wash my armor in a tub, it takes time but could be done, lets assume the shop comes up with a way to clean them after each use, I think it is pretty well understood that you dont want to rent someones funk. So besides the cleaning issue, ideas? comments? rental costs?
 

zedro

Turbo Monkey
Sep 14, 2001
4,144
1
at the end of the longest line
what you would select would make a difference. Stuff like the Fox Roost type stuff, hip pads that go over shorts, easy to clean leg and elbow armor. Doesnt have to be the best protection or something you would use, but it would be better than nothing.

my equipment doesnt stink, but then again i know how to use soap....
 

Kornphlake

Turbo Monkey
Oct 8, 2002
2,632
1
Portland, OR
I think it's a neat idea if you could find a way to really clean them, but I can't imagine that you could turn a profit ore even break even. I'm not sure what actual dealer cost on padding is but if we assume you're spending $200 that means you'd have to rent out one complete set 10 times at $20 a day to break even, you'd have to worry about keeping a few different sizes on hand and you'd need enough to accomodate the demand on race weekends or whatever. I just think it'd be tough to break even, add cleaning costs and the cost of storing the inventory and pretty soon you're loosing money. A better idea would be for shops to offer 15-20% off all protective equipment for the first year after purchasing a bike so people could at least get a deal on stuff and not have to buy it all at once.
 

OGRipper

back alley ripper
Feb 3, 2004
10,650
1,121
NORCAL is the hizzle
Most people who own armor know that it gets pretty nasty after a couple of rides, and wouldn't think of using someone else's pads even if they've been washed. But people who don't have armor probably aren't aware and won't mind renting if they are trying to decide if they want to buy or just can't afford to but need it for one trip (like to Whistler).

Armor is not that expensive, so the rental cost will need to be low. Good leg/knee armor shouldn't be more than $50, arms/elbows even less, so you'll have a tough time getting anyone to pay more than say $10/day for that stuff. Similar amount for full face, but ugh, how nasty would a rental helmet be after a few weeks? Upper body stuff (like a 661 pressure suit or RG flackjacket, not to mention Dainese or something) runs more so someone might pony up 30 - 40 bucks a day but its hard to tell.

I think you'd have much better luck if you were located in the Whistler village or rental shop. On site would seem to be key. I don't know many people that rent skis anywhere but on the mountain and the same might be true for bike stuff.
 

kidwoo

Artisanal Tweet Curator
Originally posted by builder666
I know N* rents armor... my buddy rented some and it wasn't bad.
Yeah, actually I've seen quite a few people getting armor there, usually teens who came with families who know what DH trail means. I think it's a great idea as long as you can keep off the reek. It keeps people safe who like you said, either are new to the sport or only do it occasionally and can't justify the $$$.

Having someone rent and be "saved" in a certain brand of armor could lead to some sales too.
 

Lexx D

Dirty Dozen
Mar 8, 2004
1,480
0
NY
Originally posted by buildyourown
Yeah, the whole hygene thing is an issue. I don't even like putting my own dianese on because it stinks so bad. I can't imagine if there was the combined funk of multiple users. And remember, you can't machine wash dianese, which is why mine only gets washed once a year.
Combined Funk, that's a horrible idea:(
 

UiUiUiUi

Turbo Monkey
Feb 2, 2003
1,378
0
Berlin, Germany
btw try to work out a deal with an armor company (Rockgardn or similar) which offers a complete lineup.
maybe they are willing to help you and set this up as a demo/rental center that way you can keep the prices down.

maybe sell that stuff at the end of the season, dependig on the condition of the given armor.


here the most shops/bikeparks which rent out armor use stuff like the Fox protectors which arent that good but are worn over the normal clothing in order to avoid cleaning them to often...
 

mplutodh1

Monkey
Nov 27, 2002
744
0
Sammamish, WA
Thanks for the input gang, when I mentioned whistler it was just another option, with being so close to the shore, and a lot of riders coming through here to get to Van it would probably work for that too, I will pass this on.
 

SebringMGB

Monkey
Feb 6, 2004
482
1
Washington
well one thing to consider, is what people will expect from renting gear, you could end up with liability law suits. my 661 pressure suit, while it provides great crash protection, the warning label says its only inteded to protect the rider from flying rocks and debris :confused:
 

UiUiUiUi

Turbo Monkey
Feb 2, 2003
1,378
0
Berlin, Germany
liability shouldn't be the big problem.
just let the customers sign a thing which says that even with armor riding a bike is dangerou and you might get hurt.

you know, the usual stuff. :)
 
In auto raing there is an unwritten rule- never borrow a helmet.

Almost everybody that has has died. Quite a few have died while wearing the borrowed helmet. This is one superptision that I would pay attention to.

I personnaly have a thing about people wearing my stuff, and I think it might be related. I have yet to get really hurt from a crash... I have rung my bell and blown both knees; but no clavicles or other broken bones.

Of course I've just jinxed myself........... CRAP!

While I'm at it...I don't get flat's either...
 

Ctfphotos

Chimp
Nov 5, 2001
78
0
Astoria, NY
I got this crazy infected thing on my forearm after being forced to wear elbow pads at a local park. I guess rental pads are better than not riding, but that time cost me a week with a huge lump growing on my arm and $120 worth of antibiotics. A full suit? No frickin way!!! That's really disgusting. And there's no way to fully clean a suit. Ever notice after your yearly dainese wash it stinks as badly as it did before after a ride.
 

kidwoo

Artisanal Tweet Curator
Originally posted by Ctfphotos
I got this crazy infected thing on my forearm after being forced to wear elbow pads at a local park. I guess rental pads are better than not riding, but that time cost me a week with a huge lump growing on my arm and $120 worth of antibiotics. A full suit? No frickin way!!! That's really disgusting. And there's no way to fully clean a suit. Ever notice after your yearly dainese wash it stinks as badly as it did before after a ride.
Another good point. I don't want your infected forearm on the pads I'm renting.

I gotta admit, I'm with Zedro. Don't you people wash your armor at least as often as you do your bike clothes?