Product Review Series - Helmets: Part 1

In this series we will look at the all-important protective gear segment, The Series will be divided into 3 parts, The Product, Technical Specs, and How do you decide which one to Buy.

 

Part 1: What is a Motorbiking Helmet?

Helmet is the most essential protective gear for a rider. The primary purpose of a motorcycle helmet is to protect a rider’s head from a major injury in case of a road mishap. Along with protection against injuries, good quality helmet’s provide features such as additional ventilation ducts, UV protection visor, intercom panels, additional padding to name a few.

 

Few things to keep in mind while purchasing a helmet.

 

  1. Buy your helmet from a reputed brand, do not compromise on quality.
  2. Build quality should be safety standard mark.
  3. Look for the safety standard mark before you purchase a helmet. Always buy a helmet with safety standard mark. In India we have: IS4151 or ISI mark. Majority of international brands use different safety standards defined in their respective countries, DOT standard is used in (North America), ECE (European safety standards) is used all over Europe and Snell standard mark is used lot of  countries all over the world.
  4. Make sure that the helmet your wear covers your head completely, accurate size will provide  you maximum protection to your head.
  5. Carefully scan through other features that might affect your eventual decision – brand, design, cost and availability.
  6. Your riding style – A big factor

Let’s look variety of riding styles;

 

Cruising-- Many who own a cruiser motorcycle prefer open face helmet or half helmet with sunglasses- although our recommendation would be a full faced helmet or at least a modular helmet to protect yourself.

 

Track Riding – all the professional racers and amateur riders who prefer riding on a track usually prefer a full faired helmet.

 

Street Riding– Riders who use their motorbikes for City riding, wear variety of helmets- full face, open face or a  half helmet.  We recommend a full-face helmet, it offers complete head and neck protection.

 

Off-Road/ Motocross– Motocross enthusiasts/ off-road riders prefer a special off-road helmet- We recommend the same,  since these special helmets been developed specially to ride in off-road or a dirt track.

 

Adventure Tourer – People who ride Adventure Bikes prefer an open face or a half helmet. Our recommendation is a full face or a modular helmet.

 

Now that we have mentioned variety of riding styles, let’s look the variety of helmets available in the market;

 

1. Full Face – These helmets are fully covered with a protective shell & foam padding to provide maximum protection to the riders. The padding inside is removable for machine wash, the visor acts as UV protector for the rider. The helmet's closed shell protects the rider from head and neck injuries.

 

Our Recommendation: We recommend a full face helmet, they provide maximum protection to the riders.

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2. Modular – A modular helmet works in two ways -first as a full-face helmet and second as an open face helmet due to its modular design. The chin of the helmet is designed to fold up and down allowing it to adjust as a full face as well as an open face helmet.

 

Our Recommendation: A modular helmet provides good enough protection, the modular design of  the gives the riders an additional option to wear the helmet, if you ask us, we still prefer a full faced helmet.

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3. Open Face—Open  helmets are fully open from the front, with an absence of a chin or a visor. Lot of Amateur two wheel riders prefer to wear these helmets, since they are lightweight & easy to carry around.

 

Our Recommendation: We do not recommend these helmets, they offer less protection.

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4. Half Helmet – half helmet or skull cap is just a small cap of a helmet which barely covers the head without protecting your face. These are preferred by riders who cruise, aesthetically they go well with cruiser bikes.

 

Our Recommendation: They lack lot of basic safety features. Not recommended by us.

 

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5. Motocross (off-road) – Motocross or off-road helmets are specifically designed for off-road riders. They have a beak shaped front for more ventilation. Lightweight design offer convenience for off road riding. Specially designed goggles are used to protect the riders from, UV rays, heat and dust since these helmets do not have a visor.

 

Our Recommendation: Buy them if you’re into off road riding or motocross racing.

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6. Dual sport -- This particular type is a cross between a full faced and motocross helmet, the dual design based on off-road helmet with protective visor, better ventilation, improved chin design and aerodynamic structuring.

 

Our Recommendation: : A Dual Sport helmet provides good enough protection, we still prefer a full faced helmet.

Most riders have their own preference of brand based on various factors such as price, design, fit, availability etc; we have mentioned some international products brands along with as some Indian brands. You can’t go wrong with either of these,  they are all well establish brands with their own line of  high quality safety standard mark approved helmets;

 

Some International helmet brands listed below:

Arai

Bell

Shoei

Shark

AGV

Bieffe

Nolan

Scorpion

SOUMY

Troy lee designs

Fox racing

Fly racing

HJC

Joe Rocket

Lazer

LS2

ICON

MSR

 

How can we forget Indian Brands?

Steelbird – Recommended

Studds

Vega

With this we finish with the Basic Introduction, We will tell you how they work in Part 2 of the Series; Coming Soon; Until then Stay Tuned

 

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