Hi there from Ohio and some beautiful sunny weather.
The 150 mile ride from Lansing, Michigan was pretty good although we did encounter a few road works – one of which got us lost a little, but we went through some gorgeous scenery in rural Michigan; lots of photogenic, rustic Dutch barns – but, sadly no opportunity to stop and photograph them.
Part of the route involved a 35 miles along hop along I-94 East – the motorway between Chicago and Detroit – so you can imagine, it wasn’t a Sunday drive in the park. Roads like this always make me think, ‘The Dreaded Dead Re-tread’; the hard shoulder and, often the main lanes are littered with huge welts of rubber thrown off trucks wearing re-treads! For that reason, I hate to be anywhere near a truck; it always brings to mind a Mythbusters episode where they put a pig’s head in a car and tested it with a re-tread flying off at 40mph – took that head right off!
The highways in Michigan (as in many parts of the USA) are also liberally spotted with road kill. In those 35 miles, we saw 4 large deer and dozens of possum, ground hogs and other small critters – even a coyote that was barely identifiable other than the fur left around the mangled mess. Makes me shudder. We both keep our eyes peeled on the woodland either side of the road, watching for the tell-tale honey-colour of a deer about to run out from the trees. Happened to us once in Colorado – the deer jumped right over our front wheel and we were amazed we escaped an accident. Scary shit.
Anyhow, we arrived at Pete and Barb’s at around 3pm. Pete was at work until 4pm, but we were soon all back together having a few hugs and a couple of beers.
Next day, we were all more rested and ready to play. Jan’s new helmet had arrived and we had given it a trial run. Happy with it, he decided he would check out the strength of his old one.
All four of us were amazed!
The old helmet is 6 years old and has been on his head for over 50,000 miles – and through weather from desert sun to snow in the Rockies. The only reason he needed a new one was the visor was leaking badly – and despite having tried to make a silicon seal last year, he really did need to replace it.
So, out came the hand guns. I think we all believed the first shot would pretty much smash the helmet up.
The first gun was a Ruger Single Six .22 LR.
We balanced the helmet on a tree stump and had a back-up plate of another, very thick tree trunk. Behind the house is an empty cornfield so, we knew all was safe.
The first bullet hit the top of the helmet and made a distinctive ZING as it hit and slid off the helmet; only a graze showed Jan had hit the target (he was once upon a time, a competition shooter)
One more round hit square on and failed to penetrate, only another dent in the helmet
The .22 wasn’t killing the helmet, so out came the Ruger 9mm
Now, the 9mm went through – clean as a whistle. The first shot went through the vent and melted the lining and straight out the back!
(On the photo above, you can see the silicon used to try to seal the helmet)
The final shot was with the .22 again – thinking the visor would shatter into a million pieces……
It didn’t – it went straight through the visor and out the back and the visor did not shatter!
We were amazed at how tough the helmet was – believe it or not, it is still wearable so, for a laugh, I will wear it when we meet up with biker friends and see if anyone notices all the battle scars!
We are planning on staying here at Pete and Barb’s until about the end of next week so internet use will be a little limited for a few days but I’ll get back with some more details of the plans once we have thought them out.