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nokneedragin 06-21-2004 10:07 AM

How much is a helmetless head worth?
Snell rating first, then try on every one you can to get the best fit. If it hurts in trying it on, then it won't get any better latter. If a lid is unconfortble then you start finding reasons not to wear it, and its distracting as hell. I had an AGV years ago that I'm sure caused bone damage to my forehead.

I've had good luck with Shoei, but any brand that fits the best works the best.

nokneedragin 06-21-2004 10:09 AM

Oh yea first post
Also take the MSF course, I don't care if you raced pro 15 years ago, take the course and make sure you have the proper skills.

Vlad 06-21-2004 10:20 AM

Re: Full Face Helmet Recommendations??
You are indeed wise at MO, as well as being right. Any Snell helmet is good for protection, DOT hats, unless from a recognized manufacturer are iffy. IMHO Nolan and HJC make some fine Snell (and DOT) helmets at a reasonable price, but there are other brands that fall into the same price/performance ratio.

Shoei, Arai, Suomy, Shark are (of course) all superb, but pricey.

Bear in mind the price of shields, the weight of the helmet, and the quality and quantity of ventilation.

The tricky part is getting one that fits. If you can't try it on, don't buy it. Put it on and walk around the store. Remember, snug, not tight, with no uncomfortable pressure spots.

Feel free, fellow MOrons, to bust my chops on the topic.


Shaun_Saxon 06-21-2004 10:34 AM

Re: Full Face Helmet Recommendations??
I live in North Florida, too, and know that ventilation is a priority. I have the Shoei X-Eleven (expensive). Before that I had a Shoei Z-II. Both excellent helmets. The X-Eleven has better ventilation. For something a bit cheaper with most of the features, I'd probably go with the Shoei RF-1000.

Interesting about the SNELL certification. Suomy was mentioned, but if I'm not mistaken, they've chosen to forsake SNELL in favor of European certification. Nevertheless, from the reviews I've read, they make excellent helmets.

I recently bought a new HJC helmet for my daughter. It's obviously not the quality of the Shoei, but I was actually impressed with the fit for the price.

I've dealt with and gotten good customer service.

Hope that helps.

Rabid_Hungarian 06-21-2004 10:41 AM

Re: Full Face Helmet Recommendations??
It's true: As long as your lid has Snell certification, then your cranium will get protection. Beyond that, you're mostly paying for additional features and comfort. But don't underestimate the importance of features and comfort, because discomfort adds up to fatigue. I have an HJC CL-14 full-face helmet as my back-up. Retail is about $150 and it carries the Snell sticker. I think it's a fine lid and if your budget limits you to the buck-and-a-half range, then you'll do fine with the HJC - as long as your head is comfortable inside. When you start moving up the pecking order to brands like (but not limited to) Shoei and Arai, you'll find linings that are more plush, superior venting and shell materials that add up to noticably lighter weight. Again, these are perks, but may mean you remain fresher and more alert for longer stretches in the saddle. I say go for the best helmet you can afford. My regular helmet is an Arai Quantum/f. Two other points: First, I recommend purchasing your helmet in person at a reputable dealer or cycle shop near you and then establishing an on-going relationship with that dealer. You need to try a helmet on in person. I don't recommend buying lids over the Internet. In fact, Arai doesn't permit the sale of its helmets this way. And finally, if a certain helmet model by a given manufacturer doesn't fit you correctly, then try another model within that company's range. It used to be that helmet makers had trademark helmet shapes. You either had an "Arai head" or a "Shoei head," etc. If an Arai or Shoei didn't work for you, you had to go to another brand. This isn't necessarily the case any longer. Most helmet makers offer different model lines that offer many of the same features, but that are shaped slightly differently. Good luck!

sarnali 06-21-2004 10:49 AM

Re: Full Face Helmet Recommendations??
I have a Shoei RF900 and my wife has new RF1000, both are pretty good but the RF1000 feels lighter and the venting is much better for around $300 at Cycle Gear they're a pretty good deal.

Anything is going to be better than nothing, but I wouldn't cheap out on helmets. I would stay with a Shoei, HJC, as a price point, or spend a little more on a Suomy or Aria myself. Just get whatever feels best on your head.

Anton_1 06-21-2004 10:52 AM

Re: Full Face Helmet Recommendations??
Just like everyone else said, buy the one that fits.

Haird 06-21-2004 11:26 AM

Re: Full Face Helmet Recommendations??
Proper fit is important not just for comfort but for protection. if the helmet can be pushed to one side or the other, or back and forth on your head, it will move in the same way on impact with a reduction in the protection it provides. Personally, the only helmet I have found that fits really well is an Arai Signet for what they call the long oval head. Just about every other helmet I have ever had on was too tight from back to front, but loose enough side-to-side that they could slide easily off center or even be pushed off. Of course, it has been a few years since I bought a helmet and I understand there are more oval-shaped choices now. I hope so as my Arai is getting toward the five-year recommended service life limit, and I would rather not have to pay $400-$500 to replace it (not to mention trying to find a dealer that actually stocks my size since Arai no longer allows Internet sales). I will, thouigh, if that's what it takes to get a good fit.

ebass 06-21-2004 11:31 AM

Re: Full Face Helmet Recommendations??
Where the hell is MR. ALL-CAPS!!!! This thread has his name written all over it!

naco_traficante 06-21-2004 11:55 AM

Re: Full Face Helmet Recommendations??
If MR. ALL-CAPS knew about helmets he wouldn't be living in a tank now, would he ?

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