How To Ship A Motorcycle Helmet
Even though you might not expect to be able to handle the abuse of package handlers, motorcycle helmets can still suffer damage (scratches, dents or dings) if not packed correctly. If you need to ship a helmet somewhere as a gift or to have it customized, a little preparation can ensure that it arrives at the destination in one piece without any damage.
Here is a quick list of steps to follow for successfully shipping a motorcycle helmet.
- Measure the helmet’s width, length, and height and find an appropriate-sized box. (The box should be only slightly larger than the helmet itself).
- If the box is not assembled, do so now. Use reinforced packaging tape in an “H” pattern to secure the bottom and side flaps of the box.
- Protect the helmet with several layers of bubble wrap and tape the protective material around the helmet. Place it in the box. (Expanded polystyrene noodles can also be used) Fill the box with polystyrene or air pillows to further protect the helmet - you want to form a protective barrier (cushion) around all sides of the helmet - including the bottom of the box.
- Cover the helmet with any packing material (packing peanuts).
- Tape the top of the box with clear packing tape, securing the flaps in an “H” pattern.
- Perform a “shake” test. There should be no sound of the movement of the helmet inside the box. (If you feel it shifting, then open the box and try repacking it).
- Take the box to a delivery service center or post office to purchase a shipping label. (If you have internet access, and a scale, you can print a shipping label through several postal apps).
- Discuss your shipping options with the customer service representative. (If you need it delivered quickly, it will cost more than if you allow a more extended shipping period).
- Affix the shipping label in a prominent place (most shipping companies have plastic sleeves for the shipping label to protect it from the elements during transit). You can create your seal by taping over the shipping label with clear packing tape.
- Inquire about insuring the item and pay the extra charge for insuring your helmet. Pay the charge for shipping and drop your package off at the counter.
- Be sure to get your receipt with a tracking number to ensure on-time delivery.
What Factors Play A Role In Shipping Costs?
Most states require motorcycle riders and passengers to wear helmets to protect their heads in the event of a crash. While helmets come in all shapes or sizes, a few things will determine how much the parcel company charges to get your new helmet to where you intend it to be shipped.
Size Of Box
Many shipping companies will charge a set rate for some boxes, but most will charge based on the size. Pay more for a 12 X 12 X 12 box than 18 X 18 X 18. You should make your box a couple of inches larger than the helmet to ensure adequate room for packing materials. These styrofoam materials form a barrier between the sides of the box and its contents.
Weight of the Box and Its Contents
Once you have completed packing the item and have secured the box with tape, sealing the help inside, the post office or delivery center will weigh your box. Weight plays an important role in determining how much the shipping fee will be. Since most motorcycle helmets weigh 3 - 5 pounds (1400 - 1800 grams), you should expect to pay around a 5lb rate for shipping.
Where The Helmet Is Going To Be Shipped
Shipping companies have higher costs if they have to ship something farther, so you should expect to pay more if you send something across the country rather than across town.
Remember that international rates are always much higher than domestic rates.
When Your Helmet Will Arrive
Most shipping companies will charge you extra for the convenience of having a helmet arrive at its destination sooner rather than later. If you can afford to wait, then ship the helmet via ground transportation, which usually means 3 - 5 business days. If you are forced to rush something to a destination or mail it overnight, expect to pay a lot more for that luxury.
Insuring Your Helmet
If you decide to take insurance on the item you plan to ship, it will cost you. Many companies have insurance on items worth up to a certain amount, but it always helps to purchase more insurance if you need it.
What Are Helmets Made Of?
Motorcycle helmets come in different configurations and are made from different materials with outer and inner shells. The outer shell of most helmets is manufactured from either polycarbonate or fiberglass materials designed to spread the initial impact of a crash over the helmet’s surface. While the helmet’s outer shell comes in different thicknesses, the composition of the outer shell can affect the durability the helmet offers during a crash.
Both materials (Carbon and Fiberglass) offer suitable protection for riders or passengers. Most of the time, the fiberglass helmet will be lighter than the polycarbonate, and the difference can affect shipping weights or cost.
(When purchasing a helmet, the buyer should look for the DOT sticker, which indicates that the helmet has been crash-tested and meets US safety standards. (Non-profit organizations like SNELL or ANSI place stickers on the inside of the helmet, ensuring buyers know when a helmet meets safety standards).
The inner shell is made of expanded polystyrene designed to soften the impact of the head and face during an accident. The face shield also helps cover any exposed area of the head protecting the nose, mouth, and eyes of the rider or passenger. Each component plays a role in protecting the brain and body from potential injury.