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post #1 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 08:43 PM Thread Starter
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Helmet shelf life?

Does a motorcycle helmet have a shelf life? This may be a totally rediculous question but I'm just curious. I just bought a brand new never used before Suomy helmet at the bike show for 99 bucks. Regular price is 399. Plain white, nothing fancy. The manufacture date on the inside of the helmet is 2003. Is this still a good helmet? Its a Spec 1 R Suomy.

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post #2 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 08:46 PM
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5 years from manufacture date.
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post #3 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 08:46 PM
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i think best answer would come from Suomy to be honest.



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post #4 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 08:48 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimzx9r View Post
5 years from manufacture date.
Elaborate. What does that mean? If a helmet is never used what happens to it? Or is that just a way for manufactures to get people to buy a new helmet?

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post #5 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 08:49 PM Thread Starter
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White tag inside helmet reads

Vigano Accessori S.P.A
Inerigo(Co) Made in Italy
BS 6658: 1985
Model Spec 1 R - Type A
Batch No 01\2003
MFG And Batch Rel
Date 1st
2004-2005

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post #6 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 08:51 PM
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why would it have a "spoil" date? Think about it... the only reason a helmet would go bad is if it impacts something hard enough to compress the shell. That helmet should last until the material starts to break down... (maybe when you're 100?)

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post #7 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 08:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Grasshopper View Post
Elaborate. What does that mean? If a helmet is never used what happens to it? Or is that just a way for manufactures to get people to buy a new helmet?
The glue and resins in the liner and the shell deteriorate with age. They go over that in the MSF courses, 5 years is just the general rule. I would contact Suomy to be sure anyway, though.
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post #8 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 09:00 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NickIF View Post
why would it have a "spoil" date? Think about it... the only reason a helmet would go bad is if it impacts something hard enough to compress the shell. That helmet should last until the material starts to break down... (maybe when you're 100?)

It isn't milk
That is the exact logic that I am thinking Nick. Come on man, you know I'm logical.

I'll contact Suomy and see what they have to say.

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post #9 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 09:33 PM
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There might be something behind that five year mark. Doesn't WERA and CCS require helmets to be newer than five years? I know when I went to Pridmore's school, they checked my helmet to make sure is was not older than five years old. I'd like to hear what the makers have to say.

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post #10 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 09:43 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jimzx9r View Post
5 years from manufacture date.
I was always under the impression that it was 4 years. So 2003 would be no good or close to it.
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post #11 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 10:21 PM
 
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Couple blurbs I found:

Since helmets are made of materials which deteriorate with age, they have a limited life span and must be replaced after five years (less if the manufacturer recommends).


Snell institute recommendations are that you should replace your helmet every two years if you race, and every five years regardless. Helmets significantly more than five years old should be destroyed. The components in the helmets that protect you tend to deteriorate with time. The time starts when the helmet is made, not when the box is opened. For this reason alone, it's an excellent idea to buy your helmet mail order: the large mail order houses have very fast turnover on their stock, so you're very likely getting a very new helmet. You can check on this simply by asking if your preferred model is popular. At your local dealer, there's a good chance that the helmets have been sitting on the shelf for six to eighteen months, so a significant portion of their service life is already used up before you ever put the helmet on your head. Also, avoid buying a helmet at the closeout places for the same reason: a one or two model year old helmet has already used up a third to a half of its service life sitting around. If your helmet is older than five years, you may be fooling your wife and yourself, but you're not fooling the laws of physics. Oh, and remember, the laws of physics were discovered by physicists, but we didn't make them: they're God's laws, not ours.
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post #12 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 10:23 PM
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I heard 5 years also but I think 7 is the norm.
post #13 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-11-2007, 10:51 PM
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Holy crap!...I never knew this. I guess I should throw out that old ass HJC I bought in 1989

Thanks for the info...going to check the tags on my Arai I bought new from ebay

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post #14 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 08:54 AM
 
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From Arai's web page....

WARRANTY
All Arai helmets are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship, and are serviceable only for the properly fitted* first user for 5 years from date of first use, but no more than 7 years from date of manufacture. It should be replaced within 5 years of first use.
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post #15 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 09:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hirsch View Post
From Arai's web page....

WARRANTY
All Arai helmets are warranted against defects in materials and workmanship, and are serviceable only for the properly fitted* first user for 5 years from date of first use, but no more than 7 years from date of manufacture. It should be replaced within 5 years of first use.
This is basically what I heard in a Soupcast interview with the president of Snell. 5-7 years of USE is the rule of thumb. However, he pointed out in the interview that sitting on the shelf is not the same as being on your head. Mostly, you need to replace it because as you use it the liner around your head starts to crush. It has about an 80% memory so over time it doesn't recover from the pressure of your head so to speak. If it hasn't been used in 4 years at all it is most likely fine. But its not like it would be fine forever. But I wouldn't worry about it.

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post #16 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 09:30 AM
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Put this in your iTunes podcast subcription list. I can't remember what episode number it is, but if you don't use iTunes I can get it and send it to you.

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post #17 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 10:18 AM
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Time to make a call to Myth Busters.

I would think that Snell makes money by people buying the product. So when I read "Snell institute recommendations are that you should replace your helmet every two years if you race, and every five years regardless. Helmets significantly more than five years old should be destroyed. The components in the helmets that protect you tend to deteriorate with time." My question is: What are the exact components that deteriorate with time?

The impact absorbing material is "styrofoam." That shit last forever.




I'd really like to see a little more proof that helmets material will not protect you as well with age.

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post #18 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 10:52 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrock View Post
This is basically what I heard in a Soupcast interview with the president of Snell. 5-7 years of USE is the rule of thumb. However, he pointed out in the interview that sitting on the shelf is not the same as being on your head. Mostly, you need to replace it because as you use it the liner around your head starts to crush. It has about an 80% memory so over time it doesn't recover from the pressure of your head so to speak. If it hasn't been used in 4 years at all it is most likely fine. But its not like it would be fine forever. But I wouldn't worry about it.
I called shoei last year about this. This is exactly what i was told by them.

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post #19 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 12:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jrock View Post
This is basically what I heard in a Soupcast interview with the president of Snell. 5-7 years of USE is the rule of thumb. However, he pointed out in the interview that sitting on the shelf is not the same as being on your head. Mostly, you need to replace it because as you use it the liner around your head starts to crush. It has about an 80% memory so over time it doesn't recover from the pressure of your head so to speak. If it hasn't been used in 4 years at all it is most likely fine. But its not like it would be fine forever. But I wouldn't worry about it.
Only other thing I could think of is your sweat deteriorates the liner.....no use = no sweat.....therefore it should be good for more than 5 years with limited use and regular washing of the liner
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post #20 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 12:17 PM
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You'd have to be nutz to wear a helment that is over 5 years old. Don't you have any idea how outdated the graphics look? Do you really want to be seen at Strats with something that outdated? Pleez, either get with it or buy a Harley.

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post #21 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 01:02 PM
 
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Sell before:

Don't forget the elements. The sun and/or cold effect the shell. Everything has a "shelf life". DVD's, electronics and something made of plastic and glue that goes around your dome.
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post #22 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 01:04 PM
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2003 is fine. Don't even sweat it Nick. You'll crack it up before the sell on date is expired anyway.
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post #23 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 06:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by OldSkoolMC View Post
My question is: What are the exact components that deteriorate with time?

The impact absorbing material is "styrofoam." That shit last forever.


I'd really like to see a little more proof that helmets material will not protect you as well with age.

Like said before, teh glue resins break down. The 'styrofoam' is glued to the outer shell. That glue will break down and cause teh shell to let go of the styrofoam.
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post #24 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-12-2007, 09:53 PM Thread Starter
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Straight from Donny Schmidt at Suomy:

Hi all,

Suomy recommends replacing a helmet after 5 yrs of use.

The reason is primarily because the EPS, the foam padding inside the helmet, gets compressed from use. In an impact, the EPS's job is to compress to decelerate the head's motion gradually instead of rapidly. If the EPS has already been comressed it cannot do it's job properly.

Hope this helps,

Donny Schmidt
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post #25 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-13-2007, 12:46 AM
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I agree, send this one to myth busters. What a crock. I put this one under the following list of stupid myths that virtually everyone seems to buy into:

1) Only ultra expensive motorcycle oil will protect your motorcycle engine.
2) New tires (on the track) will save you from crashing.
3) Only Arai helmets protect your head well, and anything cheaper is foolhardy.
4) A never-worn helmet will deteriorate so badly that it's protection diminishes substantially after 5 years.
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post #26 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-13-2007, 01:31 AM
 
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I agree, send this one to myth busters. What a crock. I put this one under the following list of stupid myths that virtually everyone seems to buy into:

1) Only ultra expensive motorcycle oil will protect your motorcycle engine.
2) New tires (on the track) will save you from crashing.
3) Only Arai helmets protect your head well, and anything cheaper is foolhardy.
4) A never-worn helmet will deteriorate so badly that it's protection diminishes substantially after 5 years.
Wow, never heard of any of those statements. You must've had some interesting conversations - with idiots.
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post #27 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-13-2007, 01:44 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Zippy View Post

1) Only ultra expensive motorcycle oil will protect your motorcycle engine.
Until youve heard the horrifying sound of a rod knock 1500 miles away from home. you may continue to dispute that. I spend the extra now.




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post #28 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-13-2007, 02:49 AM
 
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Quote:
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Wow, never heard of any of those statements. You must've had some interesting conversations - with idiots.
Yeah ...never heard those either
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post #29 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-13-2007, 05:15 AM
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u guys should all go and buy some cheap old helmets, and a couple of baseball bats, then submit your video results to mythbusters
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post #30 of 34 (permalink) Old 02-13-2007, 07:37 AM
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Quote:
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Until youve heard the horrifying sound of a rod knock 1500 miles away from home. you may continue to dispute that. I spend the extra now.
I his defense....I buy AMSOIL cause its WAY cheaper than the others!!!!
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