Canadian Manufacturing

Pfaff Harley-Davidson develops a new protective prototype for motorcyclists

The full design considerations for the prototype have been open-sourced and released online, enabling any manufacturer in the world access to the virtual blueprint.

June 22, 2021  by CM Staff

TORONTO — Pfaff Harley-Davidson unveiled their Tough Turban prototype, conceived and designed by Toronto’s Zulu Alpha Kilo, the dealership’s creative partner, which developed this advancement using impact-resistant materials.

“Pfaff Harley-Davidson is proud to help champion an idea that celebrates the diversity of our ridership. We are honoured to help advance the cause of diverse gear and to help build awareness for the potential of the innovation amongst our vast community of riders across Canada and around the world,” explains Brandon Durmann, Brand Marketing Specialist at Pfaff Harley-Davidson.

“The Tough Turban further empowers Sikh riders to protect who they are,” shares Zak Mroueh, Founder and Chief Creative Officer of Zulu. “This initiative combines a lot of things we’re glad to focus on at Zulu Alpha Kilo – inclusion, innovation and our core belief in using design thinking to solve real world problems.”

The idea came from the Zulu team of Dan Cummings and Vic Bath, who is from a Sikh background. He was inspired by his father, who grew up in a small village in India and dreamed of owning a Harley-Davidson, which to him was the ultimate symbol of freedom.

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Zulu tapped Spark Innovations for the preliminary design of the Tough Turban. It features technologies in protective gear like non-Newtonian foam that hardens on impact, 3D-printed chainmail and a composite fabric used in bullet-proof clothing. The full design considerations for the prototype have been open-sourced and released online, enabling any manufacturer in the world access to the virtual blueprint to make their version of a reinforced turban for riders in their region.

“We welcomed the opportunity to share our experience in the creation of protective gear to develop a turban application,” says Chris Pearen, Design Director at Spark Innovations. “Working with a Sikh consultant, we learned about the warrior culture and created a chainmail-like matrix that could be incorporated into the traditional feeling of a turban. Just seeing how engaged the riders are with the prototype is certainly inspiring!”


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