Advertise on Bikeforums.net



User Tag List

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 56
  1. #1
    Brain Bucket Killer LilNole's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2004
    Location
    Tallahassee, FL
    My Bikes
    Beater--Magna Glacierpoint
    Posts
    25
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)

    why are helmets so expensive?

    I just bought a helmet for my gf. we shopped around some and she tried on lots of different helmets, mostly Bell and Giro's. She ended up getting a Giro Havoc like mine....the price $44.95 from Nashbar. I paid about that for mine. the new ones are $69.99 ....thats more than what I paid for my bike. there were some Bell helmets for around $20 but they didnt fit well and she said they made her head hot. plus they were just all around uncomfortable, bulky and heavy.
    I saw some on Nashbar.com that were over $100...is a $100 helmet worth it?
    Could it be that most people dont wear helmets because that a comfortable good looking helmet costs well over $40?
    I saw that most kids helmets were pretty cheap. we even saw a nice one for only $15. I wish my Havoc only costed $15. i'm hard on helmets, and i like lots of ventilation...if its not comfortable and light, i wont wear it. so for now, i'll pay out the $45 and up for a good helmet....but why so much for some foam and plastic?

  2. #2
    By-Tor...or the Snow Dog? hi565's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Ma
    My Bikes
    Bianchi Cross Concept, Flyte Srs-3
    Posts
    6,481
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    hey some are cool aerodynamic dont forget that

    i can see what your saying my helmet the Giro Encinal cost 50.00$ around there. OH and so you know helmets go over 150$
    ----------------------------------------------------------

  3. #3
    more ape than man timmhaan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    Location
    nyc
    Posts
    8,093
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    a lot of money goes into research, development and testing. they need to recoup that cost somehow. your not just paying for the foam and plastic.

  4. #4
    riding a Pinarello Prince orguasch's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2000
    Location
    Downtown Toronto,Canada
    My Bikes
    Pinarello, Prince and an FP5
    Posts
    2,403
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    and the head if left unprotected, is much more than a cheapy helmet,
    "Racso", the well oiled machine;)

  5. #5
    ÖöÖöÖöÖöÖö Dannihilator's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2002
    Location
    Annandale, NJ.
    My Bikes
    2014 Surly Steamroller, 1977 Puch Pathfinder
    Posts
    18,806
    Mentioned
    20 Post(s)
    Tagged
    1 Thread(s)
    Ahh, stop your whining I just bought a $120 dollar helmet today.
    Strike like an eagle and sacrifice the dove.
    Words and Stuff.

  6. #6
    I drink your MILKSHAKE Raiyn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    St. Petersburg, FL
    My Bikes
    2003 Specialized Rockhopper FSR Comp, 1999 Specialized Hardrock Comp FS, 1971 Schwinn Varsity
    Posts
    15,071
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    "If you have a $10 head, buy a $10 helmet."

  7. #7
    Crank Crushing Redneck SamDaBikinMan's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2002
    Location
    A van down by the river.
    My Bikes
    Bikes are environmentally damaging
    Posts
    2,600
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Raiyn
    "If you have a $10 head, buy a $10 helmet."
    AMEN brotha!

  8. #8
    <>< SoonerBent's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Oklahoma City
    My Bikes
    RANS Tailwind
    Posts
    768
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Raiyn
    "If you have a $10 head, buy a $10 helmet."
    Excellent point!

  9. #9
    Senior Member larue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Madison, WI
    My Bikes
    Surly Pacer/Cutter/Viking
    Posts
    1,511
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    well actually when you pay more for a helmet you are paying for weight loss and air holes not safety. a $110 helmet like my own is no safer than a $35 as long as that helmet is certified and if it's being sold in a store or is made my bell or giro it most definitely is.
    Leave your treadmill power trip behind.

  10. #10
    cab horn
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    Toronto
    My Bikes
    1987 Bianchi Campione
    Posts
    28,295
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by larue
    well actually when you pay more for a helmet you are paying for weight loss and air holes not safety. a $110 helmet like my own is no safer than a $35 as long as that helmet is certified and if it's being sold in a store or is made my bell or giro it most definitely is.
    Exactly....

  11. #11
    Car-Free Flatlander Stacy's Avatar
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Location
    Below 14th Street
    My Bikes
    Sirrus
    Posts
    1,976
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I've been all over the manufacturers websites and, aside from the number of vents, I can't find any difference between the cheap helmets and the high end models.

    Quite honestly I think they've identified their markets and priced helmets to fit what they believe cyclists are willing to spend. Those who want a basic helmet can get one for $20 to $40. Those who want something with more ventilation, or don't want a "cheap" helmet can pay in the $50 to $100 range. Of course if you want a helmet like Lance, you get to pay for that too. They already know parents aren't going to pay a whole lot of a helmet that could be outgrown in a few months.

    My $5 flea market special has 9 non-functional vents. The advantage is, it's warmer in the winter and I don't get the sound of air rushing through the vents

    Stacy

  12. #12
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    AZ
    My Bikes
    Cannondale SuperSix, Lemond Poprad. Retired: Jamis Sputnik, Centurion LeMans Fixed, Diamond Back ascent ex
    Posts
    13,907
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Marketing and hype (like much of cycling gear) based on erronious belief that:

    1. A more pricey helmet works better for protection
    2. That $80 of extra engineering goes into a $100 helmet over a $20 one. (If this was true why do they keep re-engineering the top of the lines models. Why not sell last years design, etc. - (OK, not a good example, but gets you thinking)
    3. That is costs 5x more in materials and manufacture. These are mass produced and use the same materials (in fact less on the expensive models) maufacturing/materials costs are probably in the sub $5-10 range.

    Al

  13. #13
    I drink your MILKSHAKE Raiyn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    St. Petersburg, FL
    My Bikes
    2003 Specialized Rockhopper FSR Comp, 1999 Specialized Hardrock Comp FS, 1971 Schwinn Varsity
    Posts
    15,071
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Stacy

    My $5 flea market special has 9 non-functional vents. The advantage is, it's warmer in the winter and I don't get the sound of air rushing through the vents

    Stacy
    I presume (hope) that it's not a used helmet.

  14. #14
    urban bike guerilla
    Join Date
    Nov 2004
    Location
    denver & blackhawk, colorado
    Posts
    89
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    why are helmets so expensive? because people are willing to pay that much for them.

  15. #15
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    AZ
    My Bikes
    Cannondale SuperSix, Lemond Poprad. Retired: Jamis Sputnik, Centurion LeMans Fixed, Diamond Back ascent ex
    Posts
    13,907
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by timmhaan
    a lot of money goes into research, development and testing. they need to recoup that cost somehow. your not just paying for the foam and plastic.
    This is a misconception, at least the scale of the impact is.

    A $20 helmet needs research, development and testing.
    A $100 helment needs it too - in fact the same level of safety testing.
    Having worked on product development there is no way that there is $80 or even $40 of development going into each helmet sold. These are fairly high quantity commodities. Research and development is not cutting edge and there is lots of reuse year over year of learnings.
    Perhaps the $100 helmets are subsidizing some of the development that goes into the $20 helmet, but its still not that large.

    Al

  16. #16
    I drink your MILKSHAKE Raiyn's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Location
    St. Petersburg, FL
    My Bikes
    2003 Specialized Rockhopper FSR Comp, 1999 Specialized Hardrock Comp FS, 1971 Schwinn Varsity
    Posts
    15,071
    Mentioned
    1 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam
    Marketing and hype (like much of cycling gear) based on erronious belief that:

    1. A more pricey helmet works better for protection
    2. That $80 of extra engineering goes into a $100 helmet over a $20 one. (If this was true why do they keep re-engineering the top of the lines models. Why not sell last years design, etc. - (OK, not a good example, but gets you thinking)
    3. That is costs 5x more in materials and manufacture. These are mass produced and use the same materials (in fact less on the expensive models) maufacturing/materials costs are probably in the sub $5-10 range.

    Al

    1. They may not work better, but they are lighter with better venting, and still provide the same protection.
    2. Usually they do they just come out with a new top of the line and the older styles "trickle down"
    3. There is much to be said in the engineering that goes on. Take for instance co-molding as opposed to taped shells. http://www.bhsi.org/molded.htm Stuctural force analysis to determine exactly how much material they can shave and where etc etc.
    Personally I'd rather have a light well vented helmet that I'll wear as opposed to a heavy, poorly vented brain bucket that's too uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time.

  17. #17
    Senior Member closetbiker's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2003
    Location
    Vancouver, BC
    Posts
    9,596
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    It's just marketing.

    The first step is to create a need, the second is to provide what everyone thinks they need, the third step is to make it trendy so people will pay more than they otherwise would if it weren't so trendy.

    I'm grown up enough so that I can make up my own mind what I need and what I don't.
    "My two favourite things in life are libraries and bicycles. They both move people forward without wasting anything" -Peter Golkin
    [SIGPIC]http://www.wulffmorgenthaler.com/striphandler.ashx?stripid=57f6ca71-73a8-42a3-acc4-29e6d333df27[/SIGPIC]

  18. #18
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    AZ
    My Bikes
    Cannondale SuperSix, Lemond Poprad. Retired: Jamis Sputnik, Centurion LeMans Fixed, Diamond Back ascent ex
    Posts
    13,907
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by Raiyn

    1. They may not work better, but they are lighter with better venting, and still provide the same protection.
    2. Usually they do they just come out with a new top of the line and the older styles "trickle down"
    3. There is much to be said in the engineering that goes on. Take for instance co-molding as opposed to taped shells. http://www.bhsi.org/molded.htm Stuctural force analysis to determine exactly how much material they can shave and where etc etc.
    Personally I'd rather have a light well vented helmet that I'll wear as opposed to a heavy, poorly vented brain bucket that's too uncomfortable to wear for long periods of time.
    I agree the results of more expensive helmets can be worth it (hence the market) but I disagree that the engineering and manufacturing cost are 5x. I am familiar with the different manufacturing methods and also of the use of structural analysis to optimize design. These are not 5x price differences. I've seen and participated in extensive structual analysis for parts that sell for sub $5 and sell in quantities of less than 200k and that eng. cost is a minimal component. Retooling a factory needs to be done for a $20 or a $100 helmet.
    If helmet designs trickle down, how come I can't buy a 2001 Pneumo design called perhaps something else for $20.
    Al

  19. #19
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Location
    AZ
    My Bikes
    Cannondale SuperSix, Lemond Poprad. Retired: Jamis Sputnik, Centurion LeMans Fixed, Diamond Back ascent ex
    Posts
    13,907
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Venting

    I own a $20 Schwinn helmet I bought at Target and a $100 Giro E2.

    In the summer when it is 100degF I can not tell that one is hotter than the other. Seriously - my head is hot not matter what. This is true at 90deg too.
    In the winter and cooler months the Giro feels cooler, because I can feel the cool air on parts of my scalp. But I don't really need the cooling as it is cooler out.

    The Giro is a bit lighter, but no more comfortable.
    The Giro looks better.

    I am glad I have the Giro. I do feel a bit bad though because of buying such a marked up product.

    Al

  20. #20
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Feb 2002
    Posts
    813
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Also, how many US $ per helmet is a manufacturer or importer paying in product liability insurance?

  21. #21
    By-Tor...or the Snow Dog? hi565's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Location
    Ma
    My Bikes
    Bianchi Cross Concept, Flyte Srs-3
    Posts
    6,481
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    I have a friend who works sublimation, and his kidding motto is

    "Make a mug for 1 or 2$ and sell it for 8$" thats pretty much how our economy works in the good ole US (at least not forgetting the other counrys in world) Thats how it is with the Lance helmet (or giro in general) People think hmmm if lance wears it then it must be the best or at least really really good. catch my drift dudes and dudettes (wow that is the second time i have used "dudette")
    ----------------------------------------------------------

  22. #22
    . . . rosebud . . . Diggy18's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Arlington, VA
    My Bikes
    Diamondback Outlook
    Posts
    875
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    It's this "buy-more-crap" economy of ours. I think most cycling clothing (and the lights!) are outrageously expensive. Helmets included.
    "There'll be time for complacency when I'm six feet under. "

  23. #23
    kipuka explorer bkrownd's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Hilo Town, East Hawai'i
    My Bikes
    1994 Trek 820, 2004 Fuji Absolute, 2005 Jamis Nova, 1977 Schwinn Scrambler 36/36
    Posts
    3,275
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Quote Originally Posted by closetbiker
    It's just marketing.
    The funny thing is that there are so many people on this forum tripping over themselves to rationalize why they paid $100+ for $15 worth of stryofoam hat, when they could have got a functionally equivalent one for $35 or less if they had shopped more carefully. If you decided you HAD to have the "cool" helmet "just because", then admit it like a man, it's OK. We all treat ourselves to a fancy overpriced toy every so often. The guy who blamed "research and development" is hilarious.
    --
    -=- '05 Jamis Nova -=- '04 Fuji Absolute -=- '94 Trek 820 -=- '77 Schwinn Scrambler 36/36 -=-
    Friends don't let friends use brifters.

  24. #24
    Senior Member larue's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    Location
    Madison, WI
    My Bikes
    Surly Pacer/Cutter/Viking
    Posts
    1,511
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    Oh yeah I bought my helmet "just because" and to have something different than everyone else around here. But I bought it for $50 when it usually goes for $110. It's once again going for that price if anyone is interested http://http://www.nashbar.com/profil...eid=&pagename=
    I've also tried Bell and Giro and personally found Lazer's fitting system more comfortable.
    Leave your treadmill power trip behind.

  25. #25
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    5,251
    Mentioned
    0 Post(s)
    Tagged
    0 Thread(s)
    It is the nature of "retail" to get what you can get. You can buy a nice tie for $20, for $200, or for $2,000 (at least I've heard).

    My favorite helmet, the Trek Vapor II, is currently "on sale" at an LBS in Houston for $29. Light weight, comfortable, and easy to "dial in" for a custom fit. It comes with a "crash exchange" policy.

    A friend of my broke his arm falling off his bike. The hospital charged him $14,000 to put his arm back together. I suspect putting his head back in one piece might have cost a bit more.

    I have cracked two or three helmets over the past several years. Two of my riding partners have gotten their hemets wedged between their hair and the concrete. None of us came home with more than a headache. A good helmet seem like a bargain to me.

Page 1 of 3 123 LastLast

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •