Helmet Padding: Restoring that Factory Fresh feeling

Helmet Padding: Restoring that Factory Fresh feeling

Having washed my RST Jacket in reproofer, and removed the dead bugs from my leathers, I decided it was time to freshen up the padding inside my helmet.

Why I find the idea of removing the padding from my Shoei NeoTec worrying is hard to say. It isn’t the first time I’ve done it, but for some reason, I always approach the task with an uneasy feeling.

When I consider how long it has been since the padding was “factory fresh”, I needed to get over myself and get it cleaned. The removal is never as difficult as I imagine it is, and with all the soft lining removed, I go in search of the non-Bio hand wash liquid.

At this point, the Officer Commanding All Matters Domestic is checking that it isn’t oily bits I’m bringing into the kitchen. It sounds like a cliché from an Ogry cartoon, but I did get checked.

It is perhaps also for the best if I don’t mention the colour of the water or the three rinses it took before the water ran clean. We’ll just move on and say nothing.

Despite lots of squeezing, the helmet padding retains a lot of water and takes a solid 12 hours to dry. Even aided by the afternoon sunshine and warm weather, a night next to the hot water tank was required before the pads were dry.

I mention all of this, in case you are going to need your helmet. It is relatively vile, sticking your head back in damp helmet padding when it is raining. I wouldn’t fancy trying when the padding was sodden from washing.

And now, with all the domestic parts of the story covered, we get to the important bit.

Hamster Face

With all the pads back in place and after I’ve treble checked all the pop-studs are seated correctly, I stick my head back in the Shoei, and it grips my head as tightly as it did when new. Along with removing the grime, washing the lining appears to bring all of the pads back to life and restores their original shape.

It is going to take a few more days similar to yesterday’s 220-mile loop through Norfolk, to get the pads aligned to the contour of my head again.

The only strange thing is the lingering smell of fabric softener. Perhaps I should spray some WD-40 in there to make it smell more “motorcycle”.

Perhaps not …

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