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Turbomarco 12-12-2007 09:50 PM

Helmet and crashing question
 
I've been told that if you crash pretty hard once on a helmet, you're supposed to replace it because the styrofoam gets compacted and is ineffective for future impacts. Its also called, "invisible damage." I crashed twice on mine, hitting the back of my head both times, but I was never knocked unconscious. Do you guys normally replace yours after a few crashes?

SCZ71 12-12-2007 10:14 PM

The styrofoam that is in these helmets should not stay compressed. It should bounce back, as its not actually getting really compressed. The main thing is that the looseness of the particles in the styrofoam (the reason its so light also)dissipate the energy from the blow. Kinda absorb alot of the energy from the impact. If you bite it hard enough to permanently damage the helmet you would be messed up pretty bad. I wouldn't worry about replacing it unless it had visible damage (cracks, etc).

landonk5 12-12-2007 10:26 PM

most helmet brands, pro-tec i know forsure, and probably giro and red,
have multi-impact absorbers, which is what it sounds like. supposedly,
regular helmets are single impact, and should be replaced because of the
"invisible damage" done after the first impact. these helmet brands
design their helmets so that the stuff inside bounces back and returns
to its normal shape after impact, so you can hit it multiple times.

PaoloSmythe 12-13-2007 04:34 AM

i disagree entirely.

smack your melon hard, and the foam as rightly said cushions the impact of your skull against the helmet's hard outer shell.

few things if anything are perfectly elastic and so the capacity for this absorption is reduced following a single hit.

of course it is up to you to quatify the severity of an impact, and thus the compression of the foam, and thus the need to replace yer lid.

my train of thought is just personal opinion and perhaps biased from riding motorbikes... but if i were to whack my head, i would buy a new helmet. and a good enuff whack to the head would not necessitate a concusion or anything remotely as severe.

but as said, this is just my opinion, so take it for what it is worth.

boarderaholic 12-13-2007 08:22 AM

I agree with Paolo, you don't need a concussing inducing helmet to replace your lid.

romesaz 12-13-2007 08:37 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by PaoloSmythe
i disagree entirely.

smack your melon hard, and the foam as rightly said cushions the impact of your skull against the helmet's hard outer shell.

few things if anything are perfectly elastic and so the capacity for this absorption is reduced following a single hit.

of course it is up to you to quatify the severity of an impact, and thus the compression of the foam, and thus the need to replace yer lid.

my train of thought is just personal opinion and perhaps biased from riding motorbikes... but if i were to whack my head, i would buy a new helmet. and a good enuff whack to the head would not necessitate a concusion or anything remotely as severe.

but as said, this is just my opinion, so take it for what it is worth.


Paolo, correct me if I'm wrong, but when it comes to motor-bike helmets, even due something as slight as just dropping your helmet accidentally it is recommended to replace your helmet.
That may be just something I've heard though, I don't ride bikes, so I can't speak from personal experience.

I agree with Paolo and boarderholic though.

PaoloSmythe 12-13-2007 09:00 AM

yep, just a drop of your melon case and its time to buy a new one.

whilst that does (even to me) sound extreme, when considering the potential energetic factors resulting from a bike crash, it is worth heading.

afterall, buttered toast always lands buttered side down!

murphy's law (aka sod's law) makes it better to err on the side of caution

Turbomarco 12-13-2007 11:48 AM

Damn, I think I hit pretty hard. I might end up buying a new one. Sad part is, that was the first time I rode with it and I already have to replace it. Oh well, I can't replace my skull, so I'll dish out another 100

N~R~G 12-13-2007 12:29 PM

they say the same thing about car bumpers...if you have any kind of impact to it you're supposed to change out the entire bumper because the damage to the foam. at least on the new cars.


i don't know...could just be another consumerism trick.

maybe send the question in to myth busters...?

killclimbz 12-13-2007 12:36 PM

Some helmets are rated for multiple impacts and some are not. Generally if the foam of your helmet looks like styrofoam, it's probably a "crush" design. The foam crushes on the impact to absorb energy. That is a one and done helmet. If the foam is crushed it's done. One and done helmets tend to be a lot lighter.
Others like many protec models are multiple impact rated. So you bounce your head off of a groomer and it's probably fine to do again. Opposite of the crush helmets a multiple impact helmet tends to be a heavier design. Noticably heavier.

No matter what helmet you use, if it takes a major impact that helmet should be retired. The multiple use ones can only take so much. If you take a hard impact and wake up down at ski patrol, it's probably time to get a new helmet.

So what helmet were you sporting?


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