Motorcycle helmets should be replaced every 5 years?

Dargo

Like a bad penny...
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That seems to be what I've read in most places now. Being that I have 3 destroyed full face Bell helmets in my old motocross trophy case (that were destroyed while I was wearing them), I am one of those who literally never rides without a helmet. Several years ago I did buy a "modular" helmet when they came out. Those are the full face helmets where the front part of the helmet pivots up allowing an 'open face' helmet of sorts when you may not really want to take your helmet off, such as when getting gas etc.

That helmet is at least 8 years old and, to be totally honest, was not a top of the line helmet. I didn't know if I'd like the "modular" helmets, so I didn't want to spend a huge amount on one. Now, I personally wouldn't consider any helmet except a modular helmet. I also like the new wireless intercom and Bluetooth helmets with high quality Bluetooth sound as well as built in AM/FM stereo radios.

After being relatively loyal to Sheoi helmets, I have to admit that my personal preference is now for the Italian made Nolan helmets. I probably should have asked before buying, but after not being impressed with the local prices, I just ordered a Nolan N104 N-104 helmet with B4 RCS B4 RCS communication system.

Anyone else have one of these helmets? I know they are not cheap, but I've always lived with the philosophy of only spending as much on a helmet as you feel it's contents are worth. So...I pretty well buy the best helmet I can buy that is comfortable. Since this helmet has been out a couple of years, I thought maybe someone else here may have one of them.
 

Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt & SNOWCAT Moderator
Staff member
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I just ride a little putt putt scooter. I bought a BELL helmet for Melen.
 

ChocoCat

New member
In my most humble opinion - having had numerous helmets since I was young and first started riding, I would say that if you are looking for a helmet where you want the best and don't care how much it cost to obtain the best, then the Schuberth helmet is for you. It is amazingly quiet (compared to other noise buckets) and it over-tested for crash worthiness.

schuberth+moving+s11246478236.gif
 

grizzer

New member
Second vote for Schuberth, blocking road noise under the chin gets almost silent operation.
 

Dargo

Like a bad penny...
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In my most humble opinion - having had numerous helmets since I was young and first started riding, I would say that if you are looking for a helmet where you want the best and don't care how much it cost to obtain the best, then the Schuberth helmet is for you. It is amazingly quiet (compared to other noise buckets) and it over-tested for crash worthiness.

schuberth+moving+s11246478236.gif

I tried one of their modular helmets on, a C3 Pro. I disliked the way the helmet front stuck way up in the air like most all others. The Nolan has a pivoting hinge that keeps the face shield low to the helmet when opened. However, their traditional full face helmet was comfortable and I liked the quality of sound from their internal speakers slightly better, but I now am only interested in modular helmets.

Ah, but alas, as I was typing this I received an email from "MC Powersports" lying to me and trying to extort an additional $90 from me for the Nolan helmet. No way in hell I'm going to fall for the scam that "the price went up after you ordered the helmet so you will have to pay an additional $90 to have the helmet shipped". MC Powersports can go directly to hell and shove their helmet completely up their arse on the trip. I don't play that way!!

Perhaps I'll go see if I can try to ride with the different helmets on and see if the C3 feels as awkward with the faceshield up in actual use as it seemed in the store. The apparently unique design of the Nolan's N-104 helmets make them about the only helmets that can realistically be used open in slower speed areas on hot days. Since I now have not already purchased a helmet, I'll try the Schuberth again before I buy somewhere else. Thanks for the suggestion! :thumb:
 

ChocoCat

New member
Why would its 'up' position or height matter. I am not sure of what you are riding, but if it were me, anything over 80 and I would be in a tuck, helmet closed. Of course riding with fairings off makes it miserable above 100 anyway.
 

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ChocoCat

New member
Ha, okay, busted. I have an Arai. But would love a Schuey. The last time I went in to fit the S3 it fit like I had someone sitting on my head. I wasn't going to plop down hard earned cash from something that wasn't fitted right. The sales lady said, "Oh, you have to buy one size down." and I was like, 'Um, no I don't'. The Arai is so noisy, but the fit is way better than most with their multiple head size ques, even one or 3/4 sizes down. Squished cheeks is one thing, having a mashed hot-spot on every point of my head is another. I ride with ear plugs just to reduce the fatigue and provide some added clarity.
 

Dargo

Like a bad penny...
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Most of my riding is just easy cruising around rural areas or down by our riverfront. Many times I like to open my helmet when cruising at 15 mph or so. You'd be surprised how much air a 6" tall parachute pulls on top of your head even that slow.

My main bike is an extremely modified 2009 VMAX. At 20 mph in 3rd gear I can just twist the throttle a little and do some major drifting. Like with my car, my theory is that if you have to use any brake to do a quarter mile tire roast, you didn't bring enough engine!
 

Dargo

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In third gear, I am just seeing the top side of the 150s.

Love the VMax's.
icon14.gif

That's what I love about this VBEAST (my license plate), I can lug along at 15-20 mph in 3rd or I can just use that one gear for an 1/8 mile run. The bike turn the 1/4 at 8.56 and 168 mph. That is still with a lot of wheel spin. It also has the air and electronic shifter so the clutch is only used off the line. It's an extremely unforgiving bike. A surgeon spent a fortune having it built and then almost killed himself the first time he rode it.

I just putt around on it until I get a Harley who insists on showing me how a 'real' bike runs. I've seen some quick ones at the track with superchargers, but I've never seen any on the street I even remotely consider quick. I have a Soft Tail Heritage. It's reasonably nice to ride but, compared to this VMAX, it's a slug that is low on slime.
 

ChocoCat

New member
Very nice. Well, that 8.56@168 is very respectable. I have only been to the track with both of my Hayabusa's to watch friends on theirs. I always get bored standing around and usually leave before the brackets are done. The thrill is in the 1/4 mile, right, not the waiting. But I would rather be riding, so off I go.

I have hear this that Vmax owners are extremely happy with them. More than likely that is why you don't see to many that are in decent condition for sale.

To the helmets, buy the best and most expensive one within your budget that works for you. :wink:
 

ChocoCat

New member
Oh yeah, to answer your Q because I did ask an Arai Rep once, replacing the helmet to a new one every five years is essential because your sweat breaks down the strength of the preformed material, can't remember what it is called, but as you sweat and form to your head-shape, that foam breaks down over time. I have an old Kevin Schwantz helmet that is atrocious, black crap comes out of it if I just look at it.

It's for your safety. Spend for your helmet only what you think your head is worth.
 

Dargo

Like a bad penny...
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I've never had the pleasure of riding a 'busa, but I had a 2012 Kawasaki XZ-14R one summer. Both my VMAX and that 14 were putting out over 200 rear wheel hp. I think the dyno on the VMAX was something like 238 (I have the dyno slip that came with it from the doctor somewhere - and, btw, the 1/4 mile run was with a different than stock rear tire and by a pro Yamaha rider) and the 14 was rated around 210 rear wheel hp. Based on 'feel' alone, it seemed that the VMAX had a vast amount more torque but the Kawasaki was much more stable and faster on top end. The VMAX has no wind screen of any sort. I believe it would be fatal to relax and raise up at the end of a 1/4 mile run and let the wind catch you.

Even though I had absolutely nothing go wrong with the XZ-14R, I sold it after having it just over half of one summer. With the many, many crashes I've had racing and other injuries over my life, the 'crotch rocket' bike is just too painful for this old man. Even if I had surgery to repair the two ruptured discs in my back (which I'm told I eventually will have to), I'm unfortunately past the ability to enjoy the riding position of that style bike. LOL, for me it became a good tricep workout from me keeping any pressure off my back. They are indisputably rockets, but I'm just too old and broken to enjoy one.

I hope to try new helmets later today if my schedule allows. I have a set of matching Nolans (one L and one M), but they don't have any sound in them. I can wear some earbuds attached to my phone and listen to music etc., but I have to snake the wire up under my shirt. Besides, they are around 5 years old. I don't plan on testing them in a crash, but if I do ever go down on the street, I need all the help I can get to salvage any functioning part of my brain I have left. :smile:
 

grizzer

New member
BMW S1000RR VS CBR1000

This is what 300kph - 186 mph looks like About the landing speed of an airliner?

[ame="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=51uaFU0m_ZM"]BMW S1000RR X CBR1000 Repsol - YouTube[/ame]
 

ChocoCat

New member
Not impressed. I have seen that view more than my share. I don't do it anymore. I had the odds catch up with me like these guys will if they keep spinning the roulette wheel. I should have had my head examined, but everyone I hung out with thought the same way and ... none of us were insane! No! (unadulterated sarcasm) I am only here typing this now because I was blessed with a second chance in this life, not by a coincidental accident. By all rights, I shouldn't be here.

The accident I had was in a similar situation at lower speeds, one of the many runs I had taken before going home on a long four mile stretch past Boeing's Everett Big Building just ramping up to the speeds they were at. And my non-stock Hayabusa went, on other occasions, well past the 200mph indicator. I made ONE, slight m i s c a l c u l a t i o n and my whole reality changed. You wouldn't know anything was wrong with me today visually. That is how ultimately blessed I was, in spite of all of the injuries I sustained that day. (details withheld thank you)

First point of contention) They are on a public road endangering the public with their egotistical antics. This is a reckless, wanton and blatant disregard for the safety of others, let alone themselves.
And two) They aren't wearing proper gear (low top shoes! come on) At these speeds, you may say, "well, leathers won't do ya any good" Wrong! Ask me how I know.

Although, everything they are doing could be said was stupid, and it was, but passing on the far right, on the shoulder like that is just complete asinine. Then, after they have completely insulted the whole freeway with their middle finger antics, they pull over after the run on the same road they passed everyone on to gloat about it all. Serious balls!

Darwin Award Recipients.

Now, if I want to do 300mph I utilize a controlled environment and get in an airplane.
 

Dargo

Like a bad penny...
GOLD Site Supporter
From about 50 or 60 trips from SFO to Napa, that seems like how I see most suicide riders riding in the San Fran area. It also seems that about every other trip that traffic is HORRIBLE because of lanes being closed while they scoop up the remains of some 2 wheel suicide jockey who removed themselves from the gene pool. I assume the 'lane splitting' thing in CA is a version of their population control?

Unfortunately about 8 years ago my wife and I had to witness one of these morons removing themselves from the gene pool. The moron clipped my driver's side mirror as I was running around 90 in the center lane, clipped the car in front of me a bit harder and went down in the left lane that was bumper to bumper at around 95 mph. He was completely run over by at least 5 vehicles and his bike literally bounced over our car and the car behind us and went under an 18 wheeler. Since all I had was a scratched mirror on my rental car, I never stopped. Why? Even if I would have been so inclined, the body would have been in so many pieces that all I could have done would have been to help gather body parts for what would have to either been a closed casket funeral or cremation. Enough vehicles that ran over body parts or were damaged were stopping anyway.

I've never been 200 mph on a motorcycle and never will. Even the extremely brutal beating riders get racing motocross (my choice of motorcycle racing) is done under supervision, with medical professionals at the track and almost always at speeds of 65 mph or under. I took enough of a beating under those conditions. Those in the video are simply suicide jockeys and, I not not only have no respect for them, but am infuriated that they make innocent people watch them remove themselves from the living.
 

JamesKnt

New member
Helmets do replace every 5 years but unless involved in an accident or damage in the gear, you must change your helmet. Regarding your question, I would go for either ILM Bluetooth or Freedconn.
 
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Melensdad

Jerk in a Hawaiian Shirt & SNOWCAT Moderator
Staff member
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I dont see WHY if the helmet is in good condtion and all... Why replace it?
Inside of the helmet there are various layers of foam. That foam is what actually protects your head. It breaks down with time and degrades. Various chemicals (like gas fumes) actually degrade the foam quicker, which is why helmets should never be kept inside a garage for storage and should be brought into your home, where chemical fumes are typically at very low levels.

FWIW, helmets are also "single use" items. One of those layers of foam is designed to crack if there is an impact. That impact can be something like dropping an empty helmet from table top height to the floor. Most helmets, by the time they have been in use for 5 years, have been dropped. That foam, once cracked, dramatically the helmet's protective quality, but the outside of the helmet may still look nearly new.
 
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