1. #1
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    Default Paul Conway Helmets

    Our department recently recieved our new helmets. We got the Paul Conway American Classics. 5 of us went to a training exercise involving a smoke house(burn building). Some of our helmets started cracking on the inside around the rim. My helmet in particular had 2 spots on the back "bill" that were melted(almost all the way thru). Those spots were about the size of an eraser head. I also had one plase on the inside where the ear flaps are on the front rim that was "pitting". Has anyone had anything similar to this happen? I have still yet to hear anything back from the company we bought them from.


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    I've had mine about 3 years now and have done several interior attacks and live burn training without damaging the helmet at all.

    share with us what you find.
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    I received a PC Classic helmet last month and love it. Who did you purchase your helmet through? Mine was purchased from Paul Conway Shields, who were very helpful.

    If yours were purchased from anyone else, I would suggest contacting PC Shields. This is where Paul Conway works. He would probably be very interested in finding out the reason of the failure.

    How many total helmets were exposed during the training? Were they all the same color (i.e., the same "batch")? I had a Cairns helmet which failed on me several years ago. I returned it to Cairns, and they replaced it for free. A couple of years later, they replaced several helmets that I believe they found to be flawed during the manufacturing process.

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    In the past few years Paul Conway sold off the helmet side of the business to (I think) Lyons apparel.

    I had mine for a few years when I was firefighting and never had a problem with. I loved the helmet and it was very comfortable. I say contact the company you bought it from AND the manufacturer. At the very least you ought to get a new helmet.
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    Lions Apparell does own Conway Helmets. I would approach your chief, show him the lid and have in contact the company who sold the lids toi the Deparrment. If the lid is new, it will be under warranty. It could have been a bad batch of of thermoplastic beads that was used in the mix. Either way, Lions should recall that batch of helmets and replace them free of charge.
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    You pitting and pices missing from you leather helmet are the places where the pine sap that the helmet was treated with EXPLODED from high heat.

    This has been reported by the Houston Fire Department and is one of the reasons they do not use leather helmets.

    At temps as low as 300 degrees the pine sap that the leather is treated with can ignite.

    The small pieces missing/pitting are probly from this happening.

    Just ask Gonzo!
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    You pitting and pices missing from you leather helmet are the places where the pine sap that the helmet was treated with EXPLODED from high heat.
    One problem, the Conway leather is a plastic hlmet that is coated with the leather. How do you blow a hole through two different materials?
    "Too many people spend money they haven't earned, to buy things they don't want, to impress people they don't like." Will Rogers

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    that and the fact that the conway classic is a plastic helmet (100%). the conway heritage is the plastic wrapped in leather.

    btw, I've been using my Conway Classic for the live burns at Firefighter II, and love it. havn't had any problems, other than it being assembled wrong (which I fixed after a quick visit to their website.
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    Oops, I thought they were leather.

    What likely happened was that somehow water got into the plastic machine.

    When the helmet got hot the water changed to steam and made the holes/pits.

    You have to keep plastic realy realy dry when you inject it into moles, this is especialy true for such things as tactical tupperware.

    A similar thing can happen to the air pockets (very very tiny) in a helmet. They can make the little blisters and are very visible. A good idication that its time for a new helmet.
    -Brotherhood: I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve.
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    Samson, anything to knock leather. The main reason Houston went to the Ben 2's is cost. 3500 FF's with $400 helmets gets costly, But look the plastic ones have some major flaws it looks like to. They can explode with a little heat. chris

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    Paul Conway heritage leather versus N6A Cand someone give me some input hear, cost aside.....Also why is the N5A not NFPA? Thanks

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    The n5a comes with bourke eyeshields which are OSHA approved but not NFPA.

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    Originally posted by jfTL41
    The n5a comes with bourke eyeshields which are OSHA approved but not NFPA.
    no, the main reason is because the N5A doesn't have the impact liner that the N6A has. the bourkes are just an added thing
    If my basic HazMat training has taught me nothing else, it's that if you see a glowing green monkey running away from something, follow that monkey!

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    Default Paul Conway Helmets

    I have had a Paul Conway composite helmet for about 4 years now and have had no problems at all. I have been in the routine fires as well as been a stoker at several training fires inside the burn building where the helmet was in high heat for long durations. I most recently was in an extremely hot apartment fire with my helmet and have not seen any of the problems that you have described. Maybe it was just a bad batch. I don't know. However I will stand by the helmet and would definitly buy another one when needed. I would continue to contact the company for an explanation and a replacement under warranty. Do it tactfully and offer to send the helmet in or have a local distributer come to your station to check out the damage. Document the incident and the environment that your helmet was in.

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