Now I ask ya … is it safe to buy /use a used helmet? What is the answer? Is it okay to go to a thrift store and get a used helmet saving big bucks? Is it alright to wear a helmet someone gave you? The answer is … maybe but maybe not. Most definitely it is risky.
Two different things come into play. First the protection that a helmet offers lessens as the helmet ages. That is because the materials the helmet is made of deteriorates over time and lose some of their protective qualities and abilities.
Secondly if the helmet has been dropped it can result in a crack in it that can’t be seen with our eyes. Again, such a crack can diminish the protection the helmet offers. The helmet might look like it is brand new but one or both of these factors may come into play. I know it is frustrating to possess a helmet that still looks like new and in looking at it one naturally thinks that it is perfectly fine and that there is certainly no reason to throw it away and replace it with a brand new one. No one in their right mind likes to throw money away. It is hard to convince ourselves that we should replace our helmets every few years even when it still looks like brand new. However, that is what we are told we should do. I doubt if many of us do this. I have to admit that I don’t. My helmet still looks like new and I am not one to spend money unless I really need to.
Here is what the industry says:
“It’s often recommended that a helmet worn frequently should be replaced every 3 years or so. The reason is that the foam degrades due to sun, heat, salty sweat and other environmental factors, added to the usual knocks of regular cycling activity.”
I have never dropped my helmet and I know that even though it may not offer as much protection as it did when it was brand new it still offers some. I don’t plan on buying a new one anytime soon. But I bought it new so I know its history.
Personally I would never buy a used helmet nor would I consider a used one someone wants to give to me. We just don’t know the history of the helmet.
BTW, I have written other articles about bicycle helmets before.
BE SAFE OUT THERE!
A FREE GIFT awaits you!
Headkayse One is a game changer for cycling safety because of Enkayse.
Conventional helmets are made from polystyrene. In a large impact polystyrene deforms to provide what’s known as “sacrificial protection”. This is why you have to be careful not to drop your polystyrene helmet in everyday use, and it’s why manufacturers recommend that you replace your helmet after a knock.
Headkayse … pronounced “head case” … hmmm, interesting … is indeed unique. It is scary to think that a brand new conventional helmet can be so easily damaged and rendered considerably less effective in protecting our noggins. It is not only scary, but downright sad and maddening. Who wants to keep buying new helmets quite frequently for fear that our current helmet might not be up to the task of protecting us (even though it might be nearly new itself)?
Enkayse is designed to work differently. It manages the energy of impacts, so it can retain its integrity after more than one impact, large or small. It flexes to the shape of your head for better comfort and security.
Because Enkayse dissipates energy rather than deforming on impact, it also cushions small bumps. Polystyrene can’t do this, since forces which are too weak to deform it are transmitted through. Enkayse provides comfort in protecting from small bumps. This may also have long-term benefits as researchers believe the cumulative effect of small knocks contributes to brain disease over time. Because Enkayse shrugs off little bumps, it means that Headkayse One is durable against the knocks and scrapes that come with everyday use. You can be sure that Headkayse One will stand up to the daily grind. You can view the entire article about this new material HERE.
This is an interesting video (below) demonstrating how conventional helmets are effected by bumps and impacts.
Their website reports that they are 167 % funded in their startup campaign. These helmets don’t come cheap, however, they should greatly outlast a conventional bike helmet which helps offset the price involved.
So if you are a helmet wearer you might consider looking into a “head case” for your noggin. They say they think they will be in production soon (mid 2017). You can pre-order HERE and it should be cheaper than when they start selling them online. They show about $112 plus shipping charges if pre-ordered.
They will be available in 8 different colors. One size fits all. Be safe out there and …
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
A FREE GIFT awaits you!
tadpole trike, tadpole trikes, tadpole tricycles, recumbent trikes, recumbent tricycles, recumbent tadpole trikes, recumbent tadpole tricycles, American Cruiser, Atomic Zombie, Azub, Bikes Reclinadas, CarbonTrikes, Catrike, Challenge, David Bruce Trikes, Edge Recumbents, Evolve, FFR Trikes, Fortrike, Greenspeed, HP Velotecknik, ICE, KMX, Logo Trikes, Outrider USA, Performer, Podersa Cycles, Scarab, Steintrikes, SunSeeker, TerraTrike, Ti-Trikes, Trident, TrikeWars, TriSled, TW-Bents, Utah Trikes, Windcheetah
This could be our head as it smashes onto the ground.
I was just reading thru a posting and the comments on Facebook about helmet use while riding a recumbent trike. I have written about helmets before**(see links below) so I reckon this is a revisit of the subject. The last several years of my working career were spent employed in a local hospital where my job was being with patients who needed someone with them constantly. That included a whole lot of head injury patients. Some eventually make full recoveries, but some have some serious issues the remainder of their lives. I saw first hand what they went thru and what they put others thru (including myself). (I could tell you some stories.) It was the exposure to all of this which sold me on how important it is to wear a helmet on a bicycle or motorcycle.
So it was only over the last 13 years or so that I personally have been using a helmet. If I ride a bicycle or motorcycle of any kind I always wear a helmet. Of course, I am of the age where helmets didn’t exist when I grew up. I rode many 10s of 1000s of miles on bicycles without a helmet. I only had a few wrecks in all those miles and fortunately I never received a head injury of any kind. I personally rarely wear a helmet while riding on my tadpole trike. I am not trying to say that it is safe not to wear a helmet while riding a tadpole trike and I certainly am not advocating it. I am well aware that things could go horribly wrong. For me it is a personal choice and I feel relatively safe not wearing one. But if I were to get back on a bicycle I definitely would have my helmet on.
There is one thing missing in this picture. The person is
not drooling. (I have seen a lot of that.)
Many of us make excuses as to why we don’t wear a helmet while riding. Some say it makes them look stupid or uncool. Some say that helmets are uncomfortable. Some say that helmets are hot.
Some say (especially females) that it messes up their hair. Some would say that helmets are not needed on a trike. Some say that any combination of the above excuses apply.
What is my excuse(s) you ask? To be honest I find them uncomfortable and hot. I can’t even stand a hat on my head unless it is bitter cold outside.
Even a visor type hat that is totally open on the top is hot to me, but I wear one when I am riding to shade the sun from my eyes. If I remove it I immediately feel relief as far as the matter of heat. I am really miserable with a helmet on.
Some say that a helmet interferes with their headrest. As to the matter of a helmet interfering with a head rest, first of all they are not headrests … they are neckrests. A neckrest should be positioned low enough that a helmet is above it. Also the type of helmet one wears makes a difference. Many helmets are impractical to wear when a neckrest is involved as they protrude too far back and some even protrude down a little more than others. A helmet which doesn’t protrude back works much better.
I have a large size neckrest which I made (pictured above) and my helmet clears it ok. My helmet (a Bell Citi) is fairly flat where the back of the headband is so even if it rests against my super soft neckrest it doesn’t present any problem. Here are examples of helmets that work well with neckrests … a Giro Air Attack (left) and a Bell Citi (right):
Tadpole trikes can tip over and the rider can get injured in a tipover.
I have tipped over a few times, but never hit my head on anything. Only once did I get any injury and it was just some abrasion on my arm. For those who ride tadpole trikes which have high seats they can tip over even easier so extra caution is needed while riding on such a trike.
“An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.”
Leaning into a turn can help considerably to prevent a tip over (roll over). Of course, this only applies if you are going fast enough for this to be a concern.
Here is something I learned as a young child:
This can be very helpful. Just be sure no one is coming from the other direction.
Paramedics treating downed cyclist.
I guess what bothers me the most about this subject is the stupid comments some people make. I am talking about comments against the use of helmets and the justification some folks make. They are simply ridiculous. I would be the first to agree that a bicycle helmet does not offer the protection that a motorcycle helmet does. Never the less, they do offer considerable protection. No one should ever try to persuade others not to wear a helmet. Yes, it is our head and our choice … unless you happen to be somewhere that has a helmet law requiring the cyclist wear helmets. If you are a rider of a tadpole trike who normally does not wear a helmet and you travel into other states and jurisdictions you might want to check whether or not helmets are legally required. Most of the time organized rides require the use of helmets by all participants.
Nope, far be it from me to try to talk anyone out of wearing a helmet. They could be key to helping us to …
KEEP ON TRIKIN’
A FREE GIFT awaits you!
** links to previous articles on helmets:
A FREE GIFT awaits you!