By Steve Larsen
You don’t have to be a committed motorcyclist for long before you begin to notice that motorcycle helmets tend to multiply in rough proportion to riding socks disappearing. This article will not explore the many reasons behind this phenomenon (e.g. breeding in dark garages), but if you send me your favorite theory, I’ll add it to my collection. At some point, you run out of convenient places to store your expanding helmet collection. A recent move to a larger and nicer garage dictated an upgrade from the shop-worn 12 in. shelf in the old garage. I wanted something that looked and worked a lot better. Surprisingly, there was an incredible number of options from $10 to $200 each: Helmet Storage Hooks ($16 – $40), Aluminum Helmet Storage Shelves ($89 – $130), Tubular Helmet Storage Shelves ($120), a Six Hook Aluminum Rack ($85), and a device called the Helmet Hitch ($9.99) originally designed to hang extension cords.
Wandering through Home Depot on a totally different mission, I spotted a garage equipment storage solution from Rubbermaid called FastTrack that ended up working beautifully. The heart of the system is an 84-in. long, heavy-duty steel rail (Part # 1784416) which, once mounted, is covered with a nice PVC cover. The rail has holes drilled for 16-in. or 24-in. spaced studs. When mounted into studs, Rubbermaid claims it will hold up to 1,750 lbs. – well over the weight of several motorcycle helmets. At my local Home Depot they sold for $18.99 each and I purchased two. I found that the two-pronged power tool holder, Part # 1784460 for $9.99, designed to hold augers, weed eaters and the like, worked just great to hold a helmet. The total system shown in the photo cost less than $118 before sales tax.
Installation is simple using the hardware included. I found and mounted the rail directly into the studs on 16-in. centers, only missing one, and substituted a heavy-duty drywall anchor instead. A level helped get it straight. I then slid on the PVC cover and clipped on the tool holders and slipped my helmets over the top. It’s far superior to my old plank and everyone seeing it has been very impressed.
Rubbermaid FastTrack Hang Rail from Home Depot
3320 West Market Street
Fairlawn, Ohio 44333
(Note: Home Depot stores and the Home Depot website worked the best and they appear to have the best pricing.)