Helmets - mean time betweef failures

Discussion in 'Australia and New Zealand' started by Andrew Price, Jan 3, 2006.

  1. TimC

    TimC Guest

    On 2006-01-05, Rayc (aka Bruce)
    was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea:
    > Andrew Price wrote:
    >> 7. Limar offer a 3 year replacement for half original price if you do have a
    >> gravity assisted rapid dismount and use the item for its intended purpose (I
    >> think other manufactrurers may do something similar) - seemed a fair deal.

    >
    > they're not all that bad really, there's a cost involved but not the
    > full whack ($ rrp)


    Damn. I've replaced two helmets over the last few years without this
    knowledge.

    --
    TimC
    "A distributed system is one in which I cannot get something done
    because a machine I've never heard of is down." -- Leslie Lamport
     


  2. Theo Bekkers

    Theo Bekkers Guest

    Rayc wrote:

    > I agree, except for the point that -that helmet used during that
    > period of twenty years, would surely have suffered some degredation,
    > UV exposure, falling on the ground when a bike falls over, body oil
    > contamination etc. So how or by what method can we test or be given
    > assurances that the 20yr old helmet can still absorb the same impact


    According to Zebee's post on motorcycle helmets, all the old ones passed the
    tests. No, you don't have any assurances except that a number of units
    tested passed the test criteria. This may or may not have any relevance to
    real life situations. a lot of data collected over the last 20 years say
    that helmet wearing has little or no effect on fatality rates of bicyclists.

    > That is my point, helmet manufacturers have given us a expected life
    > of the helmets ( up to 5yrs) they have supplied reasons (UV exposure,
    > contamination etc) and I believe that these are acceptable constraint
    > for a helmet's working life.


    You think helmet manufacturers are the best people to judge expected life? I
    think this is more likely a "What the market will bear" judgement.

    > So my train of thought goes........
    > a helmet can only last so long....... max of 5yrs - less with uv
    > Exposure, contamination,etc................. I want maximum shock
    > absorbtion... so replace helmet every 2-3 years.


    As I said, I'm still wearing my old Bell. OTOH my motorcycle helmet is only
    about 6 or 7 years old. :)

    > You can never know when your going to have an accident, so hoping for
    > best odds, I would want to have the best protection.


    Best to stay in bed then.

    Theo
     
  3. Theo Bekkers

    Theo Bekkers Guest

    Bleve wrote:
    > Theo Bekkers wrote:


    >>Much like Apple really. If Apple
    >> had licenced their computer technology we'd all be using Apple
    >> clones now instead of IBM clones.


    > a lot of us *are* using UNIX :)


    Geez, I didn't know Unix made computers. Where do I get a Unix processor and
    motherboard?

    Theo
     
  4. Theo Bekkers

    Theo Bekkers Guest

    TimC wrote:

    > And dear ghod, I'm glad weren't not using apple clones now.


    It was Apple's insistance on keeping their hardware propriety that allowed
    IBM clones and Microsoft to outsell and undersell them and eventually the
    Microsoftware caught up to the Apple operating system. How little time ago
    was it when we were restricted to 8 character file names on MS systems ?

    Theo
     
  5. Theo Bekkers

    Theo Bekkers Guest

    Rayc wrote:
    > Theo Bekkers wrote:
    >
    >> Umm, it has the same standards sticker on it as this years helmet
    >> crop, so how is it sub-standard?
    >>

    > I'm sure that the helmet was standards compliant when manufactured,
    > but what about now?
    > The general wear and tear of general use and the exposure to UV and
    > contaminates surely affect the shock absorbation ability of that
    > helmet.
    >
    > Thats the point of this thread, asking the acceptable working life of
    > a helmet.


    The point is that we don"t know. Zebee's post suggests that there is little
    if any. A 12 yo helmet still passed the test.

    >> Mine is a hard shell (as they all were then). I would think the
    >> current "less shell" models would not give me better or equal
    >> protection.

    >
    > Now arguement there, the hard shell helmet would offer more abrasion
    > resistance, but its the foam inside that absorbs the impact shock.
    > This abillty of the said 19yr old foam still absorbing the shock to
    > the same extent and ability is the arguement.


    But that foam works much better when the impact is distributed over a much
    wider area by a hard shell. :).

    Theo
     
  6. daveL

    daveL Guest

    Theo Bekkers wrote:
    > TimC wrote:
    >
    >> And dear ghod, I'm glad weren't not using apple clones now.

    >
    > It was Apple's insistance on keeping their hardware propriety that allowed
    > IBM clones and Microsoft to outsell and undersell them and eventually the
    > Microsoftware caught up to the Apple operating system. How little time ago
    > was it when we were restricted to 8 character file names on MS systems ?


    A bit off topic I know, but I remember a Computer Architecture lecturer
    at uni telling us that Steve Jobs refused to allow the addition of an
    I/O bus in an early apple model because it was supposed to be so that it
    didn't _need_ peripherals :)

    --
    daveL
     
  7. Paulie-AU

    Paulie-AU New Member

    Joined:
    Mar 22, 2005
    Messages:
    275
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    The testing involves a penetration test as previously mentioned. A solid steel helmet would pass this test but would still hurt like hell if your head was in it.

    Of course an old fibreglass motocycle helmet would pass this test (only has to do it once). I am not sure if they then measure the depth of indentation to determine the slowing effect of the material and as a result the force absorption.

    The thing that amazes me is that given the option to headbut a road/car/tree with or without a helmet 99.9% of people are going to choose a helmet. So why would someone then decide that they wouldn't wear a helmet when undertaking an activity where the chances of this are elevated above activities such as walking? (the it will never happen to me syndrome because I am invincible and dont make mistakes........what a load of crap)

    As far as justifying it with statistics, many people who wear a helmet do so in order to minimise injury in the event of an accident and not necessarily to avoid death. I imagine if an event severe enough to cause death whilst cycling (eg. being run over by a car) occured there would be internal injuries that caused most of the problems.

    Also as far as people thinking they look like a dork well I guess they have some serious self confidence issues. (20 year old cycling helmet whist being retro is perhaps crossing the line because they were all awful :D )

    What is so wrong with a product having a service life? Everything else on a pushbike does. People are very happy to spend big dollars getting the latest frame/bike/parts but are then willing to skimp on a helmet.

    It would suck to have motor function problems that make getting your own dinner a problem (or worse) because you were to cheap/cool to actually protect your head.
     
  8. Rayc

    Rayc Guest

    Theo Bekkers wrote:
    >
    > According to Zebee's post on motorcycle helmets, all the old ones passed the
    > tests. No, you don't have any assurances except that a number of units
    > tested passed the test criteria. This may or may not have any relevance to
    > real life situations. a lot of data collected over the last 20 years say
    > that helmet wearing has little or no effect on fatality rates of bicyclists.


    Again not want to start a personal attack or holy war. If you as an
    adult choose to
    wear on older helmet that exceeds the acceptable working life, that is
    your choice.
    The OP has stated that upon inspection of his helmet that had had no
    major accidents,
    "5 years constant use, a few minor scrapes"
    " 3. When we pulled the old one apart the polystyrene really had
    deteriorated
    badly, especially where the straps were attached to it - crumbled with
    not
    much applied force in the weakest bits - was clearly past its use by
    date"
    >
    > > That is my point, helmet manufacturers have given us a expected life
    > > of the helmets ( up to 5yrs) they have supplied reasons (UV exposure,
    > > contamination etc) and I believe that these are acceptable constraint
    > > for a helmet's working life.

    >
    > You think helmet manufacturers are the best people to judge expected life? I
    > think this is more likely a "What the market will bear" judgement.


    What I was trying to convey is that there are limits of acceptable
    working lives of everything. An example - no one can give the exact
    lifespan of a light bulb, only a guide line. Run to much current and
    the bulb wont last as long, drop the bulb or turn on and off too many
    times the bulb will have a shorter lifespan.
    >
    > > So my train of thought goes........
    > > a helmet can only last so long....... max of 5yrs - less with uv
    > > Exposure, contamination,etc................. I want maximum shock
    > > absorbtion... so replace helmet every 2-3 years.

    >
    > As I said, I'm still wearing my old Bell. OTOH my motorcycle helmet is only
    > about 6 or 7 years old. :)
    >
    > > You can never know when your going to have an accident, so hoping for
    > > best odds, I would want to have the best protection.

    >
    > Best to stay in bed then.


    By ensuring I have a helmet that the best shock abssorbtion capability,
    I feel that I am giving myself the best odds. I have after all choosen
    to accept the dangers and consequences of cycling on and offroad.
     
  9. Tamyka Bell

    Tamyka Bell Guest

    Paulie-AU wrote:
    <snip>
    > Also as far as people thinking they look like a dork well I guess they
    > have some serious self confidence issues. (20 year old cycling helmet
    > whist being retro is perhaps crossing the line because they were all
    > awful :D )


    A friend of mine actually told me she stopped riding a bike once helmets
    became mandatory, because helmets looked so ugly and cyclists looked
    like eggheads. I resisted the urge to tell her that in her case, it
    could be an improvement. Instead I told her she looked more like the
    chicken, in her cage.

    Tam
     
  10. Theo Bekkers

    Theo Bekkers Guest

    Paulie-AU wrote:

    > The thing that amazes me is that given the option to headbut a
    > road/car/tree with or without a helmet 99.9% of people are going to
    > choose a helmet. So why would someone then decide that they wouldn't
    > wear a helmet when undertaking an activity where the chances of this
    > are elevated above activities such as walking? (the it will never
    > happen to me syndrome because I am invincible and dont make
    > mistakes........what a load of crap)


    Stupid arguement.

    > As far as justifying it with statistics, many people who wear a helmet
    > do so in order to minimise injury in the event of an accident and not
    > necessarily to avoid death. I imagine if an event severe enough to
    > cause death whilst cycling (eg. being run over by a car) occured there
    > would be internal injuries that caused most of the problems.


    If the gov't was serious about saving lives with helmet legislation when are
    they passing the compulsory car helmet laws?

    > Also as far as people thinking they look like a dork well I guess they
    > have some serious self confidence issues. (20 year old cycling helmet
    > whist being retro is perhaps crossing the line because they were all
    > awful :D )


    Obviously yu've never seen the Bell helmet. It looked nothing like the
    Stackhat. BTW, did you notice that I bought that helmet quite some time
    before compulsion?

    > *It would suck to have motor function problems that make getting your
    > own dinner a problem (or worse) because you were to cheap/cool to
    > actually protect your head.*


    Because you were too stupid to wear a helmet in a car, where most of these
    injuries occur?

    Theo
     
  11. Tamyka Bell

    Tamyka Bell Guest

    Theo Bekkers wrote:
    >
    > Paulie-AU wrote:
    >
    > > The thing that amazes me is that given the option to headbut a
    > > road/car/tree with or without a helmet 99.9% of people are going to
    > > choose a helmet. So why would someone then decide that they wouldn't
    > > wear a helmet when undertaking an activity where the chances of this
    > > are elevated above activities such as walking? (the it will never
    > > happen to me syndrome because I am invincible and dont make
    > > mistakes........what a load of crap)

    >
    > Stupid arguement.
    >
    > > As far as justifying it with statistics, many people who wear a helmet
    > > do so in order to minimise injury in the event of an accident and not
    > > necessarily to avoid death. I imagine if an event severe enough to
    > > cause death whilst cycling (eg. being run over by a car) occured there
    > > would be internal injuries that caused most of the problems.

    >
    > If the gov't was serious about saving lives with helmet legislation when are
    > they passing the compulsory car helmet laws?
    >
    > > Also as far as people thinking they look like a dork well I guess they
    > > have some serious self confidence issues. (20 year old cycling helmet
    > > whist being retro is perhaps crossing the line because they were all
    > > awful :D )

    >
    > Obviously yu've never seen the Bell helmet. It looked nothing like the
    > Stackhat. BTW, did you notice that I bought that helmet quite some time
    > before compulsion?
    >
    > > *It would suck to have motor function problems that make getting your
    > > own dinner a problem (or worse) because you were to cheap/cool to
    > > actually protect your head.*

    >
    > Because you were too stupid to wear a helmet in a car, where most of these
    > injuries occur?
    >
    > Theo


    Theo, do you have stats on that? I thought seatbelts were meant to
    protect you from head injuries - you should be able to move far enough
    to hit your head. Of course there's side impacts but that's probably why
    cars now have side airbags.

    As an aside, I'd be guessing that most of my head injuries occurred when
    I was a boxer ;)

    Tam
     
  12. Theo Bekkers

    Theo Bekkers Guest

    Tamyka Bell wrote:
    > Theo Bekkers wrote:


    >> Because you were too stupid to wear a helmet in a car, where most of
    >> these injuries occur?


    > Theo, do you have stats on that? I thought seatbelts were meant to
    > protect you from head injuries - you should be able to move far enough
    > to hit your head. Of course there's side impacts but that's probably
    > why cars now have side airbags.


    Seatbelts protect your head from going through the windscreen, not the side
    pillars. Few crashes are head-on and side pillars cause a lot of head
    injuries. Very few cars have side airbags. Mine doesn't, does yours, how
    many people you know have side airbags? My son's Merc is the only car of the
    people I know personally that does but it cost $105K.

    Here's a good place to start

    http://www.pcug.org.au/~psvansch/crag/cars.htm

    Compulsory Bicycle Helmets: Unfair Discrimination
    Wearing of helmets has been compulsory for cyclists in Australia for years,
    but how many people know that reports of the Federal Office of Road Safety,
    in 1987 and 1998, recommend them for occupants of motor vehicles too?

    Hoping that helmet wearing would reduce serious head injury and satisfied
    that the costs and inconvenience to bicycle riders were "more than balanced
    by the savings to the community", Australian governments made it compulsory
    for cyclists. They have not applied this reasoning to vehicle occupants,
    whose head injuries cost $1.5 billion a year! Instead, FORS published the
    1998 report "so that the community can make informed choices" and emphasised
    helmet wearing as a voluntary measure only - in contrast to giving cyclists
    no choice.

    This is the scary and compelling reason for vehicle occupant helmets:-

    "vehicle occupants, whose head injuries cost $1.5 billion a year".

    Read the gov't media release down the page which says bicycle helmets would
    give much better protection than even side air-bags.

    Guess why TPI is so high. If every vehicle which is charged $400 + TPI per
    year got issued with 2 or 4 $20 helmets, how much of that $1.5 billion would
    be saved?

    > As an aside, I'd be guessing that most of my head injuries occurred
    > when I was a boxer ;)


    Hehe.

    Theo
     
  13. Tamyka Bell

    Tamyka Bell Guest

    Theo Bekkers wrote:
    >
    > Tamyka Bell wrote:
    > > Theo Bekkers wrote:

    >
    > >> Because you were too stupid to wear a helmet in a car, where most of
    > >> these injuries occur?

    >
    > > Theo, do you have stats on that? I thought seatbelts were meant to
    > > protect you from head injuries - you should be able to move far enough
    > > to hit your head. Of course there's side impacts but that's probably
    > > why cars now have side airbags.

    >
    > Seatbelts protect your head from going through the windscreen, not the side
    > pillars. Few crashes are head-on and side pillars cause a lot of head
    > injuries. Very few cars have side airbags. Mine doesn't, does yours, how
    > many people you know have side airbags? My son's Merc is the only car of the
    > people I know personally that does but it cost $105K.


    Nah, my car is a 15-y.o. pos which is one of the reasons I ride my bike.

    > Here's a good place to start
    >
    > http://www.pcug.org.au/~psvansch/crag/cars.htm
    >
    > Compulsory Bicycle Helmets: Unfair Discrimination
    > Wearing of helmets has been compulsory for cyclists in Australia for years,
    > but how many people know that reports of the Federal Office of Road Safety,
    > in 1987 and 1998, recommend them for occupants of motor vehicles too?
    >
    > Hoping that helmet wearing would reduce serious head injury and satisfied
    > that the costs and inconvenience to bicycle riders were "more than balanced
    > by the savings to the community", Australian governments made it compulsory
    > for cyclists. They have not applied this reasoning to vehicle occupants,
    > whose head injuries cost $1.5 billion a year! Instead, FORS published the
    > 1998 report "so that the community can make informed choices" and emphasised
    > helmet wearing as a voluntary measure only - in contrast to giving cyclists
    > no choice.

    <snip>

    That would be so fscking cool, wouldn't it, if it was compulsory to wear
    helmets in cars, people would have no excuse to not ride bikes!

    Tam*doesn't give a shit about her hair*
     
  14. Owen Cook

    Owen Cook Guest

    On Tue, 3 Jan 2006, Andrew Price wrote:

    > Big chunk of styrofoam fell out of the Limar helmet on the way home from
    > work tonight, right where the strap attaches at the back.
    >
    > 5 years constant use, a few minor scrapes (there was that low tree branch
    > once as I recall) so I guess I can't complain - but I really think it was
    > the rash threat to wash it because it was getting a bit pongy in the heat
    > that caused it to give up the ghost.
    >
    > Recommendations for one with significantly longer life span?



    I probably destroy a helmet in 2 or 3 years, mainly through branches. I
    think the best thing to do is simply check it every time after you have a
    bad contact.

    The last *real bad* contact went through the styrofoam, and then that sort
    of weakened it.

    For me there is no mileage in getting a mega buck helmet as branches don't
    respect price.

    I often think I should try an army disposal store and get one of those
    steel helmets, but the guvment might decree it unsafe



    Owen
     
  15. Random Data

    Random Data Guest

    On Thu, 05 Jan 2006 10:45:06 +0000, Andrew Price wrote:


    > 8. Less expensive Giro lookalikes (called Tec I think) are starting to
    > appear for about 1/3 the price if the top of the line jobs and seemed to
    > weigh much the same - no info on longevity of the knock offs yet
    > available - had the relevant AS approved sticker attached to them for
    > what that's worth.


    I've had one of these for about 18 months now. Still in tact, though the
    pads are going, and it's had a lot of use. The only problem I find is that
    the pads funnel sweat onto my glasses, but the addition of an
    "Aaaar Cap'n" type bandanna solves that problem.

    And at $100 it's much nicer on the wallet next time I kill a helmet

    --
    Dave Hughes | [email protected]
    "The wages of sin is death, but so's the salary of virtue, and at least
    the Evil get to go home early on Fridays" - Pratchett
     
  16. Peter Keller

    Peter Keller Guest

    On Fri, 06 Jan 2006 08:01:47 +0000, Owen Cook wrote:

    >
    > On Tue, 3 Jan 2006, Andrew Price wrote:
    >
    >> Big chunk of styrofoam fell out of the Limar helmet on the way home from
    >> work tonight, right where the strap attaches at the back.
    >>
    >> 5 years constant use, a few minor scrapes (there was that low tree branch
    >> once as I recall) so I guess I can't complain - but I really think it was
    >> the rash threat to wash it because it was getting a bit pongy in the heat
    >> that caused it to give up the ghost.
    >>
    >> Recommendations for one with significantly longer life span?

    >
    >
    > I probably destroy a helmet in 2 or 3 years, mainly through branches. I
    > think the best thing to do is simply check it every time after you have a
    > bad contact.
    >
    > The last *real bad* contact went through the styrofoam, and then that sort
    > of weakened it.
    >
    > For me there is no mileage in getting a mega buck helmet as branches don't
    > respect price.
    >
    > I often think I should try an army disposal store and get one of those
    > steel helmets, but the guvment might decree it unsafe
    >
    >
    >
    > Owen


    A steel helmet would satisfy the penetration test, but would not satisfy
    the shock absorbing <300G deceleration to headform test on dropping on
    anvil from 1.5m

    Peter

    --
    No Microsoft involved. Certified virus free --
     
  17. Bleve

    Bleve Guest

    Owen Cook wrote:

    > I probably destroy a helmet in 2 or 3 years, mainly through branches. I
    > think the best thing to do is simply check it every time after you have a
    > bad contact.


    Depends on what you mean by a "bad contact". Remember that modern
    bicycle helmets work by breaking apart on impact. How do you check for
    fractures in the foam?

    > The last *real bad* contact went through the styrofoam, and then that sort
    > of weakened it.
    >
    > For me there is no mileage in getting a mega buck helmet as branches don't
    > respect price.
    >
    > I often think I should try an army disposal store and get one of those
    > steel helmets, but the guvment might decree it unsafe


    You could try one of those puddingbowl helmets the kids wear at
    skateparks.
     
  18. Theo Bekkers

    Theo Bekkers Guest

    Rayc wrote:
    > Theo Bekkers wrote:


    > Again not want to start a personal attack or holy war. If you as an
    > adult choose to
    > wear on older helmet that exceeds the acceptable working life, that is
    > your choice.


    Your tone conveys to me that I must be mad or stupid. :)

    > The OP has stated that upon inspection of his helmet that had had no
    > major accidents,
    > "5 years constant use, a few minor scrapes"
    > " 3. When we pulled the old one apart the polystyrene really had
    > deteriorated
    > badly, especially where the straps were attached to it - crumbled with
    > not
    > much applied force in the weakest bits - was clearly past its use by
    > date"


    My helmet has the straps attached to the hard shell. I don't think I'd want
    to trade it for one where the strap is attached to the styrofoam and with no
    hard shell. I just can't see that as an "upgrade".

    I do not have much faith in helmets, not much in AS1698, and even less in
    helmet manufacturers morals. I do however, think that the wonderful people
    in parliament have our best interest at heart at all times. My mate says he
    used to think he was cynical till he met me.

    > What I was trying to convey is that there are limits of acceptable
    > working lives of everything. An example - no one can give the exact
    > lifespan of a light bulb, only a guide line. Run to much current and
    > the bulb wont last as long, drop the bulb or turn on and off too many
    > times the bulb will have a shorter lifespan.


    Agreed.

    >> Best to stay in bed then.


    > By ensuring I have a helmet that the best shock abssorbtion
    > capability, I feel that I am giving myself the best odds. I have
    > after all choosen to accept the dangers and consequences of cycling
    > on and offroad.


    I, on the other hand, have never considered cycling to be dangerous. I've
    been cycling since the age of four and it was never considered to be a
    dangerous pastime, ...... until we got helmet laws.

    Theo
     
  19. TimC

    TimC Guest

    On 2006-01-06, Tamyka Bell (aka Bruce)
    was almost, but not quite, entirely unlike tea:
    > Theo Bekkers wrote:
    >> Seatbelts protect your head from going through the windscreen, not the side
    >> pillars. Few crashes are head-on and side pillars cause a lot of head
    >> injuries. Very few cars have side airbags. Mine doesn't, does yours, how
    >> many people you know have side airbags? My son's Merc is the only car of the
    >> people I know personally that does but it cost $105K.

    >
    > Nah, my car is a 15-y.o. pos which is one of the reasons I ride my bike.


    Tam, don't ever get a new car!

    :)

    --
    TimC
    Can you keep your witty comments shorter dude? I can't
    make that my sig! --Hipatia
     
  20. Rayc

    Rayc Guest

    Theo Bekkers wrote:
    >
    > Your tone conveys to me that I must be mad or stupid. :)
    >

    No, I said that, you as an adult can choose to do what you want.

    > I do not have much faith in helmets, not much in AS1698, and even less in
    > helmet manufacturers morals. I do however, think that the wonderful people
    > in parliament have our best interest at heart at all times. My mate says he
    > used to think he was cynical till he met me.


    If you do not have faith in the helmet manufacturers, or the AS
    standard and are of the belief that cycling is completely safe, then
    what do you have to lose by getting rid of your old bell helmet and
    getting one that is a third or less in weight and tenfold in terms of
    ventilation? you stll comply with the laws and as a bonus there's less
    weight on your head and its cooler ( in temp) anyways!

    > > What I was trying to convey is that there are limits of acceptable
    > > working lives of everything.


    > Agreed.


    So you do agree that there is a fixed lengtth to the working life of a
    helmet?
    Name a few safety equipment things that work as well as they did,
    twenty years on?
    Let alone a twenty year old safety item that works as well or better
    than a current version?

    Seatbelts in cars are supposed to be replaced after a good crash, Rock
    climbing gear ropes, harness's and hardware all need be inspected and
    prehaps replaced not only after a fall, but after considerable use.

    You as an adult can also chosse not to do these things, its YOUR choice
    to accept or ignore these acceptable rules. It is your head/body - how
    you protect them is your decision.

    > I, on the other hand, have never considered cycling to be dangerous. I've
    > been cycling since the age of four and it was never considered to be a
    > dangerous pastime, ...... until we got helmet laws.
    >
    > Theo
     
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