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  1. #1
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    Casco Viper - I'm impressed!

    I picked up a new Casco Viper this weekend. I've been using a Giro Switchblade for a few years now and I found the Viper on liquidation in a store at a price I could not pass on. Now, I'm a big fan of those "hybrid" helmets and I have to admit the Viper impressed me quite a bit more in person then on picture.

    - Comfort wise, the adjustment mechanism is great, you put it on, turn a small wheel in the back and it tightens to your head size, no messing around with adding or removing pads. There is a net which sits on your head so the helmet structure does not touch your hair.

    - The chin guard "seems/feels" quite a bit more solid then my old Switchblade. There is a pretty thick amount of this gray foam, unlike on the Switchblade which relies mostly on a plastic molding.

    - On the mechanism to insert and remove the chin guard I'm so so! It's a very quick snap on type which is great to install and remove while on the trail unlike the Switchblade which uses 6 small hex screws. On the other hand, the plastic part that you push to snap it in place is a bit flimsy, I can see that you have to be careful with it.

    In conclusion, I find that this hybrid helmet is a really good compromise for all mountain riding. No wonder it won several "awards" according to the Casco web site. They rate it as a DH and XC helmet, I think that is way exaggerated, however I will not hesitate to wear on some "light" DH days. I like to do a lift assist day once in a while. I'm old so I don't go fast, I think this helmet is going to provide me with a bit better protection then what the Switchblade was giving me.

    Here is some info from the Casco web site, you have to click on Viper MX

    http://www.casco-helme.de/en/default01.htm

    I'll try to take some pics of the Viper vs Switchblade later this week and add them here.

    Cheers.

  2. #2
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    How does the sizing compare ? I wear a medium Giro SB and wonder if I would be safe buying a medium Viper ? Thanx

  3. #3
    Oh, So Interesting!
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    Its a good idea, but you'll break the jawpiece clips if you're not extremely careful when you remove it. If both sides aren't removed simultaneously the clip on the side thats left in will bend, and can crack. Luckily you can just buy a jawpiece instead of the whole helmet.

    Also, the fit is very tight if you have a fat face like me, and the padding isn't very good, it has sharp edges, especially in the forehead area. I also have a Spec Deviant and its a MUCH better helmet than the Casco is as a ff both in terms of comfort and protection.

    Sizing is posted on their website and is fairly accurate, if anything the fit is on the tight side.
    .




    Strava: turn off your dork logger when you're not on sanctioned trails.

  4. #4
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    Quote Originally Posted by keen
    How does the sizing compare ? I wear a medium Giro SB and wonder if I would be safe buying a medium Viper ? Thanx
    My Switchblade was a small with no added padding, fit was pretty tight on my head. I tried the medium and large Viper. The medium fit but I felt like the helmet was sitting a bit too high on my head. The large was a better fit, the contour strap that gets tightened by the adjustment wheel in the back goes lower on my forehead and below this kind of "bump" we have at the back of our head so it felt more secured after adjustement. Hope this is not too confusing. Anyway, I think the Viper's sizes are on the small side compared at least to Giro.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by BanzaiRider
    My Switchblade was a small with no added padding, fit was pretty tight on my head. I tried the medium and large Viper. The medium fit but I felt like the helmet was sitting a bit too high on my head. The large was a better fit, the contour strap that gets tightened by the adjustment wheel in the back goes lower on my forehead and below this kind of "bump" we have at the back of our head so it felt more secured after adjustement. Hope this is not too confusing. Anyway, I think the Viper's sizes are on the small side compared at least to Giro.
    Hmm... doesn't sound too promising to try an order a helmet online. I purchased a Met Parachute from the UK and the fit was the same but the quality sucked so it went back.

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by keen
    Hmm... doesn't sound too promising to try an order a helmet online. I purchased a Met Parachute from the UK and the fit was the same but the quality sucked so it went back.
    Let's say the good thing is the adjusment mechanism works like a charm and either the medium or the large would have fit my head. I prefered the fit of the large because it sits lower but another person with the same size head as me might have prefered the medium, probably dependant on the head shape. I have to admit that ordering a helmet online is certainly not the greatest. I picked up mine in a MEC store in Canada. If you are not far from the border, you might want to check, there are MEC stores in most big Canadian cities.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by BanzaiRider
    Let's say the good thing is the adjusment mechanism works like a charm and either the medium or the large would have fit my head. I prefered the fit of the large because it sits lower but another person with the same size head as me might have prefered the medium, probably dependant on the head shape. I have to admit that ordering a helmet online is certainly not the greatest. I picked up mine in a MEC store in Canada. If you are not far from the border, you might want to check, there are MEC stores in most big Canadian cities.
    When I purchased a med. Giro E2 I was told , from the LBS, you either have a Giro or Bell head... the Giro fit better than the Bell. 1 year later I ordered a Giro Mad Max in a medium - too tight. Tried on a Bell Bellistic in a large for a perfect fit. All this has added to my helmet fitiment confusion.

  8. #8
    ride hard take risks
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    Helmets should be tried on before purchase, if you mail order & it fits your awful lucky. There are to many head shapes to guarantee a fit.
    Formotion Products
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by BanzaiRider
    Let's say the good thing is the adjusment mechanism works like a charm and either the medium or the large would have fit my head. I prefered the fit of the large because it sits lower but another person with the same size head as me might have prefered the medium, probably dependant on the head shape. I have to admit that ordering a helmet online is certainly not the greatest. I picked up mine in a MEC store in Canada. If you are not far from the border, you might want to check, there are MEC stores in most big Canadian cities.
    salut Banzai!

    where did you pics that helmet for so cheap?

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by tartosuc
    salut Banzai!

    where did you pics that helmet for so cheap?
    MEC, I'll shoot you a pm over allezy...

  11. #11
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    I just bought both the Viper and the Deviant (both on sale, so why not?). The Viper is what it is- an XC helmet with a chinguard. Better than nothing, but it is not comparable the Deviant in terms of build quality and protection.

    The chinguard is proving to be very difficult to snap in and out (this was the case with 3 different helmets in the store, but I hope that it'll loosen up). I also expect the plastic clips to break eventually as they are very flimsy. The demo helmet in the store was missing a clip.

    EDIT: After a couple of days use, the chinguard is proving much easier to insert and remove. It takes a bit of wigging on each side, but can be done in around 10 seconds, which is much better than the 3 minute attempts when the helmet was new.

    I think that $200 for the Viper is excessive. At RRP, the Deviant is cheaper and has a better buckling system. Still, I can see that I'll use the Viper more often in the 80-90% humidity conditions that I ride in.
    Last edited by womble; 09-18-2007 at 02:33 AM.

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