I recently damaged my helmet (standard Bell road style) in a fall, so it will be retired from use (I'm a firm believer in the '1 hit' rule: My helmet had a bad fall. Is it still good?)

Rather than just throwing the helmet in the garbage, can anyone suggest some other useful purpose for it (or the parts)?

  • 1
    Hanging basket?
    – Mr_Thyroid
    Apr 12, 2017 at 19:14
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    bellhelmets.com/crash-replacement suggests you might be able to get a discount (but I don't know if they have you ship the helmet back or just send a picture) ; I had thought at least one bike helmet company offered a send us your broken one and pay for shipping/handling/small fee to get a replacement because we don't want folks using damaged helmets and they allegedly wanted to track where damage was occurring but now I can't find that info
    – Foon
    Apr 12, 2017 at 19:21
  • Do some crash tests on that helmet and record it on video. Then publish (and give a link).
    – krzyski
    Apr 13, 2017 at 9:55
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    I damaged a helmet in a crash and have kept it (as is) as an example to others about why wearing a helmet is so important. It's a nice reminder for myself to be thankful too - I crashed hard enough, that without the helmet, I would have died. Apr 13, 2017 at 14:25
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    Make a model turtle! :D And rip off those straps; They come in handy for stuff like keeping your bike from falling over at bike stands if you attach the two fabric ends.
    – yollooool
    Apr 14, 2017 at 18:49

1 Answer 1


The straps are probably the best bit. You should be able to reassemble them into a short luggage strap perhaps to use with panniers or a rucksack.

If any removable pads have survived wear and tear up to now, they might fit your replacement, and a spare set of pads is a good thing for when the other pads are destinking (mine need a periodic soak in bleach).

I keep an old (but not visibly damaged) helmet under my desk in work, because I also keep a bike near work and in theory could end up wanting to use it and not having my current helmet.

The shape and size are too awkward for many potential uses - while you could probably make one into a lunch bag or something it would take more materials than it's worth. I wondered about keeping it as a jig or stand foe use when tinkering with helmet-mounted lights or cameras (something I do more than most people) but helmets are all different and what mounts securely on one won't necessarily work on another.

You may have recycling for the foam in your area if you can get the outer shell off.

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