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Old 11-18-2012, 08:03 PM   #1
fried tofu OP
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How Long Do Helmets Last

Not in the "how many crashes can I survive", but do they have a shelf-life of sorts?

I've got a Shoei RF1100 from early 2011 that I wore for about five months (not that often) sitting in my closet. I went back to school, and thought I'd be able to grab a bike again after I finished, but it looks like it will be quite some time. I'd like to sell the helmet if possible, as it's doing me no good and that cash could be put to use (student loans), but I don't know if it should be okay to sell/use.

I'm thinking it should be fine, but I figured I would ask.

Thanks for any advice.

Kyle

fried tofu screwed with this post 11-18-2012 at 08:04 PM Reason: Left out information.
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:15 PM   #2
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3 to 5 years,in excelent shape,say the helment companys.
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Old 11-18-2012, 08:28 PM   #3
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I have wondered that myself? my helmet spends lots of hours in 90+ temps & direct sunlight, and at the same time my hot sweaty head keeps up the temp and humidity on the inside!
Do they breakdown after time? get soft? just turn to crap??

Thanks in ADVance...
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:32 AM   #4
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Five years is what I've always heard, assuming nothing else happened to it.
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Old 11-19-2012, 07:08 AM   #5
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My melon

I put $50K into educating my melon, I think $200-$300 every five years to protect it from hitting the pavement at 50-60 mph is worth it. I do not look down on people who do not wear helmets, Im assuming they just have not invested as much as me.
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:06 AM   #6
going south
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Quote:
Originally Posted by max384 View Post
Five years is what I've always heard, assuming nothing else happened to it.
Thats good news for me!! I have been looking to buy a new helmet, the one I have now is quite tired, I am just such a cheap skate... but I do like my head the way it is.... sooo its new Helmet time...

Thanks...
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:45 AM   #7
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Funny how environmentalists clammor about styrofoam cups and food containers in landfills lasting thousands of years and mucking up the planet...

Yet, the EPS foam in our helmets break down in 3-5 years.

Things that make you go, "Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm............"

Why don't we make the EPS energy absorbing liners out of the same foam we use for cups and food containers?

Ha ha! Just love to point out stuff like that.
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Old 11-19-2012, 09:55 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mhevezi View Post
Funny how environmentalists clammor about styrofoam cups and food containers in landfills lasting thousands of years and mucking up the planet...

Yet, the EPS foam in our helmets break down in 3-5 years.

Things that make you go, "Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm............"

Why don't we make the EPS energy absorbing liners out of the same foam we use for cups and food containers?

Ha ha! Just love to point out stuff like that.


Maybe. But people that make silly political points at every opportunity are irritating. Motor oil loses its viscosity within a short period of time, yet remains a pollutant for a much longer period of time. Presumably styrofoam in helmets and coffee cups would follow a similar pattern.
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Old 11-19-2012, 10:14 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mhevezi View Post
Funny how environmentalists clammor about styrofoam cups and food containers in landfills lasting thousands of years and mucking up the planet...

Yet, the EPS foam in our helmets break down in 3-5 years.

Things that make you go, "Hmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm............"

Why don't we make the EPS energy absorbing liners out of the same foam we use for cups and food containers?

Ha ha! Just love to point out stuff like that.

The EPS in helmets is pretty much the same stuff that is in coffee cups. Ever try, as a kid, to transfer gasoline from one mini bike to another mini bike in a styrofoam coffee cup? It almost just pours straight through!

Where do your store your helmets? I bet in the garage, there are lost of gasoline fumes in there. See that brown on the sidewall of your tires? That is called blooming, more chemicals in your garage "air".

As mentioned earlier, heat, sun, sweat, body oils, compressing the comforrt liner pulling it on and off hundreds of times. Ever sit it on your mirror? That makes tiny impressions in the EPS.

EPS does not have a memory, it does not spring back. It is very simple and seemingly very robust, but remember what its job is. It is basically a shock absorber that works one time.

Your choice, but your observation is not valid.

I run street helmets longer & tend to buy expensive ones. I buy cheaper off-road helmets and replace them more often.

So really cost is about the same. I run a $500 or so street helmet for 5-6 years & a $150 off-road helmet for 1-1.5 years.
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Old 11-19-2012, 11:27 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by fried tofu View Post
Not in the "how many crashes can I survive", but do they have a shelf-life of sorts?

I've got a Shoei RF1100 from early 2011 that I wore for about five months (not that often) sitting in my closet. I went back to school, and thought I'd be able to grab a bike again after I finished, but it looks like it will be quite some time. I'd like to sell the helmet if possible, as it's doing me no good and that cash could be put to use (student loans), but I don't know if it should be okay to sell/use.

I'm thinking it should be fine, but I figured I would ask.

Thanks for any advice.

Kyle
If you don't need it I would absolutely sell it. Nothing wrong with buying/selling used helmets - happens every day! Just be prepared to ship it properly. RF1100s are what's up right now and you should have no trouble getting rid of it as long as your price is reasonable. Most helmet mfg's state a 5 year shelf life. They would never, ever say something like that to encourage you to buy another helmet, now would they?
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Old 11-19-2012, 12:30 PM   #11
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Maybe, and maybe not. It just might have something to do with keeping the uneducated from using a helmet 20 years old and then starting a lawsuit when their head gets smashed 'cause the lid's old. Maybe they try to design the best possible protection with a known set of parameters so the engineers and designers know what the design goal is. And maybe, just maybe, a helmet is different from a coffee cup. Not sure, but maybe. However, it could very well be just a plot to take our money. Good thing we get to decide for ourselves every 5 years, no?
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Old 11-19-2012, 06:23 PM   #12
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5 years is the norm but the rule is to hang it up and buy a new one if you are in an accident or incident and hit the helmet.
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Old 11-20-2012, 12:48 PM   #13
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If you use the helmet often you can expect a lifetime of around 3-4 years, after that it will be larger and larger and not stay seated properly on your head.

If you just store it in the closet: no particular lifetime; it is still good after ~ 10 years, probably, but you will need a new visor for it as plastic lose transparency over time.
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Old 11-20-2012, 02:17 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SCQTT View Post
Where do your store your helmets? I bet in the garage, there are lost of gasoline fumes in there. See that brown on the sidewall of your tires? That is called blooming, more chemicals in your garage "air".
.
I read this is a book as well... Either Lee Parks' Total Control or Nick Ienatsch's Sport Riding Techniques, can't remember. But yeah, I wanna get into the habit of bringing the lid inside after rides.
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Old 11-30-2012, 07:46 PM   #15
fried tofu OP
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Thanks guys. Thought I had hit subscribe on the thread, but I didn't so I just thought to check. Lots of good info and interesting tangents. Thankfully mines been in the closet in it's bag and box; if I had couches I'd keep them in plastic as well :)

So two questions, how do you ship a helmet "properly" as mentioned, and what can I expect to ask for an 1100 that has little use and been kept well?

Thanks again

Kyle
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