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Thread: Helmet testing (post crash)

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  1. #1
    BUBBAZANETTI
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    Helmet testing (post crash)

    I might as well have just sauntered in and started an oil/harley bashing thread for the flack i'm likely to accumulate by asking the following:

    is there any way of testing a helmet, post crash, to verify it's integrity?

    backstory: minor get off a few weeks back, nothing terrible, but i did come down on my head and right shoulder fairly hard after flipping over the bike.

    helmet: aside from a scrape where it hit, seems "ok" from a "well, it doesn't look like it'd been run over by a truck" pov. thing is, i'm a practical sorta fella, and very much not one to go throwing something away just because of a blemish or small defect. this also happens to be arai's top of the line lid (meaning $$$) and doesn't have a whole lot of mileage or years on it.

    bottom line: if it's going to protect me in a future crash, great, if not, fine, but i'd like verifiable proof as to such, rather than a lot of conjecture

  2. #2
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    Quote Originally Posted by BubbaZanetti View Post
    I might as well have just sauntered in and started an oil/harley bashing thread for the flack i'm likely to accumulate by asking the following:

    is there any way of testing a helmet, post crash, to verify it's integrity?

    backstory: minor get off a few weeks back, nothing terrible, but i did come down on my head and right shoulder fairly hard after flipping over the bike.

    helmet: aside from a scrape where it hit, seems "ok" from a "well, it doesn't look like it'd been run over by a truck" pov. thing is, i'm a practical sorta fella, and very much not one to go throwing something away just because of a blemish or small defect. this also happens to be arai's top of the line lid (meaning $$$) and doesn't have a whole lot of mileage or years on it.

    bottom line: if it's going to protect me in a future crash, great, if not, fine, but i'd like verifiable proof as to such, rather than a lot of conjecture
    Try contacting Arai, some companies will x-ray and examine a suspect helmet at little or no charge. Also I have been told some insurance companies will reimberse (spelling) you for safety equipment that has been damaged in and accident.

    Roy
    Roy G.
    85 K100RT Ol Ruby "Gone but not forgotten"

    02 K1200LTC Hoss

  3. #3
    Registered User lmo1131's Avatar
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    is there any way of testing a helmet, post crash, to verify it's integrity?

    Bubba,

    In todays litigious society I would be really surprised if you would find any company willing to step out on the limb and essentially guarantee that your helmet is still able to provide the degree of protection that it was certified to when it was manufactured. There's only so much that can be determined by x-ray or ultra-sound "inspections".

    The only test I can think of that would verify the integrity of the exterior shell would destroy the helmet in the process, since it has to measure the force required to actually penetrate the shell. The interior padding probably took a bit of compression as a result of the impact, and that's the part that provides most of the protection. Perhaps you could order new padding (foam). But again... product liability being what it is, Arai may have misgivings about selling parts to "restore" a helmet.

    I'm a practical guy as well (not to mention currently unemployed), so if the "damage" is basically cosmetic, I think I would continue to use it.

    Your call however. Obviously. My guide; When in doubt. Don't.
    "It is what you discover, after you know it all, that counts." _ John Wooden

    Lew Morris
    1973 R75/5 - original owner

  4. #4
    BUBBAZANETTI
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lmo1131 View Post
    I'm a practical guy as well (not to mention currently unemployed), so if the "damage" is basically cosmetic, I think I would continue to use it.

    Your call however. Obviously. My guide; When in doubt. Don't.
    good points, i hit hard enough to go unconscious for a few seconds, but being my first real crash, i dunno if it was really all that bad.

  5. #5
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    If I dropped a helmet on the ground, I wouldn't think twice and would continue to wear it. If my head was in it when it hit the ground, I'd get a new one.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

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  6. #6
    Mars needs women! 35634's Avatar
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    I wore a "tested" helmet for about a year after hitting a deer. Broke arm, but the helmet damage was mostly scraping on the chin and visor. Had no qualms about retiring it when I found a new one I liked, it was about 5 years old anyway. Never had the opportunity to retest it's integrity
    1987 K75S
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  7. #7
    hack'd chiba13's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BubbaZanetti View Post
    i hit hard enough to go unconscious for a few seconds
    Replace the helmet. Seriously. Just throw it out & get a new one.

    --chiba
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    - '05 R1200GS - '98 K1200RS + Hannigan Classic sidecar -

  8. #8
    Registered User 88bmwjeff's Avatar
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    Well...Here's my $0.02.

    The way it's been explained to me is that it's the Styrofoam that absorbs the energy in an accident. So, while the shell might look OK, the big question is what does the Styrofoam look like. Styrofoam does not bounce back to its original shape. Since you hit the ground hard enough for a very brief bit of unconsciousness, I would assume that the Styrofoam is compressed and would not provide the same level of protection the next time.
    The helmet did its job, but it's now time to get a new lid.
    Jeff in W.C.
    1988 R100 RT (the other woman)
    "I got my motorcycle jacket but I'm walking all the time." Joe Strummer

  9. #9
    It is what it is. Bud's Avatar
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    Most insurance companies will replace a helmet that has been involved in an accident where your helmet hit the ground. Just a thought
    I used to post here, but now I don't.

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