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  1. #1
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    Do I need a new helmet?

    I was riding on saturday and went down on some cobblestones. I dont mean that in any way other then to say my bike went out from under me. Bruised hip, hand, shoulder and an elbow that was about an inch bigger than it normally is. To make a long story short, I did a whiplash sideways head slap onto the cobblestones. The helmet didnt crack, but left me with a headache and some scratching on my helmet. I hit pretty hard and would likely have been unconscious if I wasnt wearing a helmet.

    My question is, does a nasty impact that doesnt crack the helmet cause damage that I can't see that would make the helmet unsafe. There is no give anywhere in the helmet and it feels pretty secure.

    Also, I will be getting off of my bike and walking over those cobblestones in the future, unless Im absolutely positive that there has been not precipitation that day.

  2. #2
    N_C
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    Better safe then sorry. Replace it. If you had a headache you probably hit your head hard enough to compress the helmet when you hit the cobblestones. Even if you can not see or feel the damage, does not mean none happened.

    You may be able to get a free one from the manufacturer or your LBS. Talk to your LBS about it. Also since your helmet is, from what you can tell intact, even if you can not get a free one offer to donate it to the manufacturer for testing to see how well it held up.

  3. #3
    Senior Member DieselDan's Avatar
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    If you have to ask, you've already answered your own question.
    Bikes use brakes to stop.

    If your bike has breaks, don't ride it.

  4. #4
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    Yes, you need to replace it. They're good for one impact only.

  5. #5
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    well, crap! remind me not to spend a lot of cash on a helmet if im going to have to buy a new one every time I make a fool of myself and fall over, which is approximately every 15 minutes.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adiankur
    well, crap! remind me not to spend a lot of cash on a helmet if im going to have to buy a new one every time I make a fool of myself and fall over, which is approximately every 15 minutes.
    Bell's are cheap, I got one for < $20.
    Il faut de l'audace, encore de l'audace, toujours de l'audace

    1980 3Rensho-- 1975 Raleigh Sprite 3spd
    1990s Raleigh M20 MTB--2007 Windsor Hour (track)
    1988 Ducati 750 F1

  7. #7
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    You shouldn't be wearing a helmet in the first place. Don't you know they don't protect you and cause you to take more risks?! Risks like riding on cobblestones!

    Just kidding. I thought I should get that in here before someone that seriously means it posts it.

    Seriously, I would replace it if possible. That would be the best course, though I have not replaced mine when I was younger and money was short, and there was no visible damage.

    Hope you heal up quckly.
    Paul the Alloy Addict

  8. #8
    The Dude abides
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    It may sound simplistic, but helmets are designed to break so that your egg doesn't. A helmet that survives impact after impact will cost you less but hurt you more.

  9. #9
    N_C
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adiankur
    well, crap! remind me not to spend a lot of cash on a helmet if im going to have to buy a new one every time I make a fool of myself and fall over, which is approximately every 15 minutes.
    My Specialized Airforce was about $30 to $35 at my lbs. Don't know what you consider expensive, but I do not think that is too bad of a price. A helmet does not make you a safer cyclist & has nothing to do with im

    If you keep falling, (& with out getting into a debate over this), you may want to look at your cycling skills. If it is a problem, refere to some books on cycling & maybe check to see if there are any kind of educational classes taught in your area. The LAB teaches classes. Here is a link about them & to see if there are LCI's you can contact:

    http://www.bikeleague.org/programs/e...e_schedule.php

    http://www.bikeleague.org/programs/e...on/courses.php

  10. #10
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    Nah, it just feels like im falling all of the time. I am usually pretty careful, but still dont know all of my limits, hence thinking I was fine on those cobblestones, simply because I had been on them twice before with no problem. I didnt take into account the fact that it had been damp that morning, and that all the moisture burned off everywhere else, but not there as it was under tree coverage. With time, I will likely process all that information at a much quicker pace as I will have a greater knowledge base from which to reference those situations. I just know it takes a lot of time and experience to get the right feel for situations, and that you will always find new ones where you end up on your tush. Well, hopefully as it has more padding that some other places.

    and I am healing up fine, but I still can't do too much in the way of serious bouncing as my head is a little sensitive and im prone to light headaches. I wear a heavy duty pad on my left elbow until the tenderness goes away. I dont wear it all the time, mind you, only when doing some sort of physical activity. I would look rediculous walking around with a big black pad on my elbow all the time. I do not have any loss of fine motor skills or anything. My balance is fine and I havent fallen again, and yes a new helmet was purchased. Im definitely thinking of getting the helmet rick moranis had in space balls.

  11. #11
    N_C
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adiankur
    Nah, it just feels like im falling all of the time. I am usually pretty careful, but still dont know all of my limits, hence thinking I was fine on those cobblestones, simply because I had been on them twice before with no problem. I didnt take into account the fact that it had been damp that morning, and that all the moisture burned off everywhere else, but not there as it was under tree coverage. With time, I will likely process all that information at a much quicker pace as I will have a greater knowledge base from which to reference those situations. I just know it takes a lot of time and experience to get the right feel for situations, and that you will always find new ones where you end up on your tush. Well, hopefully as it has more padding that some other places.

    and I am healing up fine, but I still can't do too much in the way of serious bouncing as my head is a little sensitive and im prone to light headaches. I wear a heavy duty pad on my left elbow until the tenderness goes away. I dont wear it all the time, mind you, only when doing some sort of physical activity. I would look rediculous walking around with a big black pad on my elbow all the time. I do not have any loss of fine motor skills or anything. My balance is fine and I havent fallen again, and yes a new helmet was purchased. Im definitely thinking of getting the helmet rick moranis had in space balls.

    If you're still having sensitvity to light light headaches & it is still occuring this long after your accident you need to go to a doctor to be checked out. It sounds like there is a serious problem that needs to be checked by a medical proffesional. Lose of fine motor skills or, the light sensitivity & light headaches indicate something is wrong.

  12. #12
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    A couple of points:

    First, helmets do not protect against concussion, they protect against traumatic head injury. You need to see a doctor IMMEDIATELY because you're experiencing symptoms that might indicate brain injury.

    Second, you can't necessarily see the damage to the helmet's foam after impact. If you've had an impact, the foam is damaged, whether you can see that damage or not.

    Third, there are *some* helmets out there which are designed to withstand multiple impacts, because they use a special type of foam. Unless you know for a fact that your helmet is designed to withstand multiple impacts, assume that it is one of the vast majority of helmets designed to withstand one impact only.

    Fourth, there's a ton of good reading here: http://www.bhsi.org/

  13. #13
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    I was noting that I had no loss of fine motor skills, just the light headaches if I bounce around too much. I meant prone to light headaches in the manner of they arent very intense. If I was having headaches just from being around too much light, I would have been more worried. Pretty sure I had some sort of mild concussion, but managed to finish 45 more miles before I felt completely like crap and had to go. Ill call the doctor before I leave work today, but I will likely be told to just take it easy and not go slamming my head into anymore cobblestones for awhile. I used to work with people who had suffered traumatic brain injuries and am aware of the consequences of not being careful with the old noggin. Ofcourse, I should know better and gone to the doctor sooner, but im am like many others who ignores their own injuries while taking other people's seriously.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Adiankur
    Of course, I should know better and gone to the doctor sooner, but im am like many others who ignores their own injuries while taking other people's seriously.
    Me too.

  15. #15
    pan y agua merlinextraligh's Avatar
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    Only other point I'd make is some helmet manufacturers have crash replacement programs where you can replace a helmet at a reduced cost.

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