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post #1 of 22 Old Jan 20th, 2006, 10:22 am Thread Starter
 
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Angry Dropped Helmet

I know, I know...you should never drop a helmet, but my wife had her's hanging on the handlebars of her bike. As I walked by it this morning I knocked it off and it fell to the floor of the garage.

With this one drop, with no more impact than it sustained, how critical is it to replace the helmet? Is it possible that the material inside was comprimised to the point that it would pose a danger if she went down?

Thanks,
Keith
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post #2 of 22 Old Jan 20th, 2006, 10:47 am
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There is no way to tell just by looking at it. If the liner (I think it’s called EPS) has been compressed during an impact, it can not provide protection in the compromised area again. Do you want to take the chance that your helmet won’t provide protection in a crash? Personally I wouldn’t take the chance. Chalk it up to an expensive lesson; don’t store your helmet where it can take a tumble. Snell recommends replacing your helmet ever five years or so anyway, so maybe it was time for a new one.

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post #3 of 22 Old Jan 20th, 2006, 10:48 am
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I doubt you’ll find any manufacture that won’t say “replace it - damage may not be evident or visible”, and I wouldn’t disagree. BUT its your head, or rather your wife’s head and I’m sure you both want the lid to be able to perform its intended job of shock/impact absorption if necessary.



How old is the helmet, they should be replace every 3 to 4 year because protective qualities deteriorate with time and wear.

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post #4 of 22 Old Jan 20th, 2006, 10:56 am
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It seems like a tough call but it isn't, really.... most, if not all manufactures say to replace the helmet if it has been dropped, or if it is older than 5 years. Ask yourself three questions:

1. Is my life and/or passenger's life worth more than $300 - $600?

2. Knowing that the helmet was dropped, can I live with myself if I get in an accident and the helmet doesn't perform - will you wonder if that would have happened anyway had the helmet not been dropped?

3. In my best Clint Eastwood - "....you've got to ask yourself one question: "Do I feel lucky?" Well, do ya, punk?"

Ted

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post #5 of 22 Old Jan 20th, 2006, 12:42 pm
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Come on guys !!... Fell from the handlebars to the floor WITHOUT a head in it...
How could the foam be compromised.... IF it didn't sustain more than a scuff or scratch it's not hurt... If the shell is cracked or broken then replace it...Helmets are made to withstand and absorb one hell of an impact....Dropping it on the floor shouldn't hurt it...


John

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post #6 of 22 Old Jan 20th, 2006, 12:56 pm
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Agree with jpspen....

There was no mass inside the helmet to compress the absorbing material so, it's not only unlikely, but practicaly impossible that any damage to inernal absorbing material was sustained. Manufacturer's are absolutely going ot tell you to replace it. Why woudln't they in today's environment where lawsuits are rampant. They have nothing to lose (and everything to gain) by recommending replacement.

If the outer shell is not damaged, then aside from being more careful about where you place it in the future, I wouldn't think twice about it. Ride on.

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post #7 of 22 Old Jan 20th, 2006, 1:09 pm
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jpspen
Come on guys !!... Fell from the handlebars to the floor WITHOUT a head in it...
How could the foam be compromised.... IF it didn't sustain more than a scuff or scratch it's not hurt... If the shell is cracked or broken then replace it...Helmets are made to withstand and absorb one hell of an impact....Dropping it on the floor shouldn't hurt it...


John
Agree! There is no way the compressable material inside the helmet is damaged by dropping the helmet to the floor. The shell could be cracked though, that is the only damage that could compromise the helmet by dropping it. Even then though, unless it is a visible crack that extends from the impact point weakening the shell, then the internal cushioning material would still do it's job in a real crash.

I dropped my helmet a couple of times, and just examined the impact point closely, if no cracks, then did not worry about it.

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post #8 of 22 Old Jan 21st, 2006, 9:53 am Thread Starter
 
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Thanks everyone. Keith
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post #9 of 22 Old Jan 22nd, 2006, 7:39 pm Thread Starter
 
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Oh Well

I got the chance to closely examine the helmet today. There is about a 3/4 inch crack in the shell. I wouldn't dare take a chance on her riding with this helmet...so I guess she'll have a new one soon. And it won't be left hanging on the handlebars.

But I've got to admit...it does concern me that the shell would crack on a drop no further than that. What if she had gone down with some real impact...what would have happened to the helmet then?

Keith
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post #10 of 22 Old Jan 22nd, 2006, 7:49 pm
 
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The helmet did it's job!

The helmet is meant to crack relatively easily, absorbing the shock wave before damage to the skull and brain within it occurs; it did it's job. If the helmet didn't break/crack relatively easily the head inside the helmet would absorb more of the impact. A helmet operates much like a race car and self destructs around the passenger keeping the driver safer from the forces.
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post #11 of 22 Old Jan 22nd, 2006, 10:14 pm
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What brand of helmet was it anyway??.... Just wondering.....

John

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post #12 of 22 Old Jan 23rd, 2006, 9:43 am Thread Starter
 
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It was an HJC CL-14. And I do understand the dispersion of energy at impact, but this was not a hard fall. None-the-less, there will be a new helmet in the stable.

Keith
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post #13 of 22 Old Jan 23rd, 2006, 9:55 am
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Quote:
Originally Posted by DaddyDukes
It was an HJC CL-14. And I do understand the dispersion of energy at impact, but this was not a hard fall. None-the-less, there will be a new helmet in the stable.

Keith
Keith - this may be more hassle than you wanna engage in, butt think about sending the helmet to HJC thru proper channels. Might be somethang they would be interested in, given the exact circumstances on how it happened. Just a suggestion. Good luck shopping for a replacement.
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post #14 of 22 Old Jan 23rd, 2006, 6:30 pm
 
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Dropped helmet

You guys better learn a little more about helmets, They are not made to crack with a three foot drop.
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post #15 of 22 Old Jan 23rd, 2006, 7:10 pm
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I dropped a CBR600 F4i 7 years ago and although I had minor scratches on my Shoei, I still wanted to be sure it was safe to use. I sent it in to Shoei and they x rayed it. Came back with a clean bill of health. Depending on the manufacturer of the helmet, they may offer that service. That way you will know. Mine was a 500 dollar helmet though....


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post #16 of 22 Old Jan 23rd, 2006, 8:10 pm
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Helmets dropped?

Humm, this is a very interesting subject, as I have worked for a Bell Helmet distributor years ago and at that time the basic wisdom was to send the helmet in for inspection. As I realize the world has changed since that time and as was pointed out that most manufacturers would recommend replacement. I wonder if anyone has actually polled the most popular helmet manufactures to ask what their policies are. With the new compounds that some shells are make of today I would question the old wisdom of replacement with a drop such as is being discussed. Also do these new compounds age like the old fiberglass helmet did?

Bill Jennings, fhp
Denison, TX

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post #17 of 22 Old Jan 24th, 2006, 7:32 am Thread Starter
 
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BulletBill

I can tell you what the new Shoei that I bought last night to replace the cracked one says - "this helmet is designed to take one impact." It does not differentiate between impact in a collision or dropping it.

BTW, I really do appreciate everyone's input on this...a good thread.

Keith
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post #18 of 22 Old Jan 24th, 2006, 10:13 am
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Keith - sorry you had to part w/ some $, but glad it was a no-brainer. My fear is the hairline crack that goes undetected....

Ted

Camarillo, CA
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post #19 of 22 Old Jan 24th, 2006, 12:22 pm Thread Starter
 
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Ted,

Thanks. It is possible that the crack is only in the finish, but I'm just not going to take that chance with my wife wearing that helmet. I did get lucky though, there is a good dealer near my home that worked me a real good deal on 2 Shoei RF-1000s. Mine needed replacing too due to age, so I worked a deal with them to buy two helmets. I got them for $299 each. That beat just about any price that I had found on the internet, plus no wait to get them.

I'm lighter in the wallet, but maybe I'll get better gas mileage and make up the money there!

Keith
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post #20 of 22 Old Jul 20th, 2006, 9:44 pm
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Cool new hats

Good move. Working in racing for over 20 years, the rule is ALWAYS pitch if it hits anything hard. Hoop strength is a one time release. After that, it's like eggs.


Here's a clip from one of the helmet safety sites fyi:

Helmet manufacturers warn users that their product is good for one impact and one impact only. After that, the helmet’s shell and impact-absorbing liner may be compromised.

Visual examination may or may not reveal shell damage. Visual examination WILL NOT reveal liner damage. A damaged shell or liner greatly reduces the helmet’s ability to absorb further impacts.

Helmet damage can occur in a sporting accident, or when the helmet is not in place on a your head, for example if it is dropped onto concrete from several feet. For this reason, manufacturers and government authorities instruct users to either return the helmet to the factory for inspection, or discard the helmet, if it has seen a significant impact. You should see a label to this effect inside your helmet.

Rob Nelson

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post #21 of 22 Old Jul 20th, 2006, 11:42 pm
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Not sure now!!

Alright, I had my Custom RT painted with House of Kolors Khameleon paint. I then threw my Arai RX7RR4 Helmet in to get matched. Loved the helmet(noisy as hell though), it is my favorite. Well when we moved from NC to CO, the movers moved pretty much 99.9% of the house, just not the bikes, horses, or boat. When the delivery finally arrived, besides the claim being in around 18K in damage to our goods, I located my Helmet. It was in a box with my Cycloak jacket, the jacket on the bottom, then my helmet set on top, then my Computer monitor ontop of it....that's right...my COMPUTER monitor(19" CRT) NO PADDING!!!!!

I got my helmet out, and the weight of the monitor compressed the flow throughs and the paint was cracked. Just the flow throughs, NOT the helmet, the helmet was pristine. I contacted Arai, they wanted the helmet. They sent it back about 3wks later. They identified 33 individual hairline flaws in the "glass" as they call it. The outter shell. Now, with the nekked eyeball...you couldn't see ANYTHING on the helmet at all!!

So, my motto "One fall, Does it all"

1 Arai RX7RR4 .....680.00
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1 custom BMW helmet Roundel......18.00

1 damaged helmet.........Lawsuit!

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post #22 of 22 Old Jul 21st, 2006, 8:08 pm
 
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helmet

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jerrod Maguire
The helmet is meant to crack relatively easily, absorbing the shock wave before damage to the skull and brain within it occurs; it did it's job. If the helmet didn't break/crack relatively easily the head inside the helmet would absorb more of the impact. A helmet operates much like a race car and self destructs around the passenger keeping the driver safer from the forces.
B/S
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