Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast
Results 1 to 25 of 36

Thread: Helmets

  1. #1
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Posts
    8

    Helmets

    What is the real scoop on helmets? All seem equally safety approved, but range in price from the $20.00 (Walmart) to well over a hundred dollars. If all are equally certified for safety, then the difference must be in weight, looks, air ventilation, and fit, I suppose.

    On trail, I don't want to take any chances with my head when I do want to take a chance with going over a tree root or a log that might bring me down.

    If a more expensive helmet is indeed preferred, I will gladly buy it tomorrow!!!

    Thoughts and recommendations?

  2. #2
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    79
    My opinion is you get what you pay for (most of the time), goes for helmets as it does with most other things.

  3. #3
    mtbr member
    Reputation: tigris99's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    1,261
    +1 ^^^

    I played the go cheapish game, $40 lbs branded helmet. Fit like crap, always moved around, sweat always in my face etc. I thought that was how things were...then I spent $70 on a bell stoker, ya there is a difference!!!! Lol.

    Now don't go just by single opinions etc. Each company uses a different design. I have a head that's very round instead of the avg elongated shape. Bell was the only company that I didn't have to buy the limited option XL sizes. I was able to buy a large in the color I wanted and feel as if its molded for me alone.

    Cheap helmets will protect ur head, the internal foam is similar/same material as expensive helmets. But as u said, u get what u pay for. Safety my be there but ull regret wasting money in a cheap one once y finally buy a nice one.
    Trek Marlin 29er

    Like It, Love It, Want Some More Of It!

  4. #4
    mtbr member
    Reputation: J.B. Weld's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    2,651
    Quote Originally Posted by nrsmd View Post
    If all are equally certified for safety, then the difference must be in weight, looks, air ventilation, and fit, I suppose.

    Nailed it. I think fit is paramount though and for me there have been some cases where a cheaper model fit better than a high end one of the same brand.

  5. #5
    mtbr member
    Reputation: jc1surf's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2013
    Posts
    189
    +++1 to all above.
    I went from $30 wallyworld helmet. I mean it works and i thought it was ok. until i purchased a Fox Flux. i was surprised on the fit. and then got a Poc Trabec and omg while I'm riding, i don't even feel the helmet on my head as compared to the $30 helmet.
    “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.” Dr Seuss....

  6. #6
    Clueless Bastard
    Reputation: WA-CO's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2013
    Posts
    650
    I laugh when I hear people buying 20-50 dollar helmets.
    Hello people. It's your head! Why would you buy the CHEAPEST thing to protect your brain?

    Like buying a car without airbags, 'cause they cost too much. Yea they do.

    Buy the best fitting, most expensive helmet you can. Cheap out on your jerseys or shorts, or gloves or car pool for a week or whatever...

  7. #7
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Posts
    412
    Quote Originally Posted by WA-CO View Post
    I laugh when I hear people buying 20-50 dollar helmets.
    Hello people. It's your head! Why would you buy the CHEAPEST thing to protect your brain?

    Like buying a car without airbags, 'cause they cost too much. Yea they do.

    Buy the best fitting, most expensive helmet you can. Cheap out on your jerseys or shorts, or gloves or car pool for a week or whatever...
    ^^^
    What WA-CO said.
    http://kevinboyer.zenfolio.com/


    *2014 Knolly Endorphin...Custom Build*
    *2013 Intense Spider 29...Custom Build*

  8. #8
    Rogue Exterminator
    Reputation: kjlued's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    4,869
    Quote Originally Posted by nrsmd View Post
    If all are equally certified for safety, then the difference must be in weight, looks, air ventilation, and fit, I suppose.
    Pretty much it.

    There is also comfort which can come from the ventilation and/or more adjustments. However, comfort is subjective to the rider and one may find a $20 helmet more comfortable than a $200 helmet.
    Features like removable pads.
    Quality of materials (but these have nothing to do with safety).
    The area that the helmet covers. A good mountain bike helmet should cover the back of the head. (this doesn't really affect price).
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  9. #9
    MTB B'dos
    Reputation: LyNx's Avatar
    Join Date
    Oct 2004
    Posts
    17,906
    As the others said and you eluded to, you get what you pay for in terms of design and implementation. Cheap helmets normally have a very crappy retention system that doesn't work well at keeping the helmet where it should be on your head, hence fit sucks and the helmet will constantly move about and be useless in a crash. Ventilation normally sucks as they're just big foam blobs and trust me, the difference between a POS helmet and one that's design properly with good ventilation is tremendous. Also you get heavy with all this. From my experience I'd say look for a helmet in the MSRP range of $40> and you should be able to find one with a good retention system, good ventilation and good coverage - you can normally actually find last years models on sale for about that that were usually $80, if they have your size or preferred colour.
    One day your life will flash before your eyes, will it be worth watching??
    MTB Barbados
    My Phantom pics

  10. #10
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Apr 2014
    Posts
    86
    went OTB front flip headstand the other day wearing my $30 Bell helmet. my head is fine, the helmet is not damaged (visually). I like the fit and it doesn't move around on me. ventilation could be better.

    not to say a more expensive helmet isn't worth it, but with my basic beginner singletrack experiences, it does the job.
    I did bruise my hip though, sucks to wear a belt now.

  11. #11
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Feb 2008
    Posts
    522
    keep in mind - its the basic beginner stage of singletrack that usually results in the most falls, bloodlettings, endo's etc - while you are learning the craft. and as it's been stated - this is your head - which controls everything else - personally - if you nailed your $30 helmet good - i'd go out and get something a bit more upscale - heck - the new Bell Stoker enduro model for $70 msrp will add to the head coverage and help ensure you do as little damage as possible to the control center ! Just saying - and you can prob find a coupon for Arts, Jenson, Pricepoint or go give your LBS the business - it wont hurt to ask them for their best price...

  12. #12
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    3,959
    Quote Originally Posted by nrsmd View Post
    What is the real scoop on helmets? All seem equally safety approved, but range in price from the $20.00 (Walmart) to well over a hundred dollars. If all are equally certified for safety, then the difference must be in weight, looks, air ventilation, and fit, I suppose.

    On trail, I don't want to take any chances with my head when I do want to take a chance with going over a tree root or a log that might bring me down.

    If a more expensive helmet is indeed preferred, I will gladly buy it tomorrow!!!

    Thoughts and recommendations?

    How are they all equally safe?

    Do you understand the testing?

    It's a pass fail test, so you actually have no idea if the $20 is as safe as the $80. All you know they both met some minimum, but that doesn't mean they're the same.

    Can't wait til this antiquated system is gone.
    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  13. #13
    Old Fart Swamper
    Reputation: Osco's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2013
    Posts
    315

    Cool-blue Rhythm

    I started with my Urban Giro, it worked fine but as summer came I needed more vents.
    This one was $50..
    My second Giro is cooler, many vents, looks more mountain bikeish and cost $70

    I spent time in the store making shure the fit was good on both. This is what matters to me.
    Also the dialable head strap on my second is nice to reset for my Halo head sweat band.

    I'm real good at falling so not worried about cracking my brain bucket...
    Tuck and roll, Tuck and roll, Judo classes will give u an edge ya know.

    Fit is everything...
    Wally world helmets don't fit me,, not even close.

  14. #14
    Rogue Exterminator
    Reputation: kjlued's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    4,869
    Quote Originally Posted by LyNx View Post
    As the others said and you eluded to, you get what you pay for in terms of design and implementation. Cheap helmets normally have a very crappy retention system that doesn't work well at keeping the helmet where it should be on your head, hence fit sucks and the helmet will constantly move about and be useless in a crash. Ventilation normally sucks as they're just big foam blobs and trust me, the difference between a POS helmet and one that's design properly with good ventilation is tremendous. Also you get heavy with all this. From my experience I'd say look for a helmet in the MSRP range of $40> and you should be able to find one with a good retention system, good ventilation and good coverage - you can normally actually find last years models on sale for about that that were usually $80, if they have your size or preferred colour.
    I had a cheap Bell ($25) from Wally World when I first started riding. I crashed tested it a few times including once over the bars landing on my head on a granite trail. Since then I bought a nicer Bell that I got for free with some come back bucks and eventually upgraded to a Bell Super.

    The quality difference between each when you put them in your hand. However each one would do the intended job of staying put and protecting my noggin just as well.

    Now if it was some weird no name Chinese knock off that costs under $10 it might be different but I would bet that any name brand Walmart helmet will protect just fine because at the end of the day Bell's name is still on it and they don't want a lawsuit.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  15. #15
    Rogue Exterminator
    Reputation: kjlued's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    4,869
    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    How are they all equally safe?

    Do you understand the testing?

    It's a pass fail test, so you actually have no idea if the $20 is as safe as the $80. All you know they both met some minimum, but that doesn't mean they're the same.

    Can't wait til this antiquated system is gone.
    That being said, the cheaper helmet could be safer.

    The same held true with motorcycle helmets.
    Independent testers have run tests and sometimes the cheaper helmets tested safer.
    Also pretty many non certified helmets would pass DOT, Snell and ec22-05 testing and some even were found to be safer than the certified helmets.

    All certification does is say the manufacturer spent the money to have the helmet certified and it met minimum required safety standards.
    Just stick it in granny and start grinding.

  16. #16
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jul 2011
    Posts
    3,959
    Quote Originally Posted by kjlued View Post
    That being said, the cheaper helmet could be safer.

    The same held true with motorcycle helmets.
    Independent testers have run tests and sometimes the cheaper helmets tested safer.
    Also pretty many non certified helmets would pass DOT, Snell and ec22-05 testing and some even were found to be safer than the certified helmets.

    All certification does is say the manufacturer spent the money to have the helmet certified and it met minimum required safety standards.
    I know, that's what pisses me off the most, our antiquated system and our gov that is slow to react to tech.

    I've said in other threads, they could put heads in a helmet just like those used in vehicle testing, mount in a stand and use reproducible impacts to each helmet.
    Then give out real numbers, then you'd know if that $100 was really worth more money to you or not.

    It could force some innovation like IIHS did to the vehicle industry. Not saying TLD helmets are bad, just using it as an example, how many helmets do you think they'd sell at $400 if testing showed they did worse than a $200 helemt
    13 Lenz Lunchbox punkass

  17. #17
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    79
    And equally as important as the helmet is, is learning HOW to fall. Some people got it, others like to smack head first into everything they can find.

    Iv owned cheap and pricy helmets. I doubt I'd ever pay less than 100 bucks for a helmet again. Some of them do offer a lot, both feature and protection wise.

  18. #18
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Dec 2013
    Posts
    13
    NEVER skimp on a helmet!

  19. #19
    mtbr member
    Reputation: strix's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2014
    Posts
    159
    You should be able to fine some nice stuff under $100 fox transition is nice, bell has some good stuff as well

  20. #20
    mtbr member
    Reputation:
    Join Date
    Jun 2011
    Posts
    835
    Quote Originally Posted by jc1surf View Post
    +++1 to all above.
    I went from $30 wallyworld helmet. I mean it works and i thought it was ok. until i purchased a Fox Flux. i was surprised on the fit. and then got a Poc Trabec and omg while I'm riding, i don't even feel the helmet on my head as compared to the $30 helmet.
    Same path I took, but I'm still using my Flux.

  21. #21
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Mr Pig's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    1,281
    I disagree with a lot of what's been said here. Sure, some helmets are better than others but price isn't necessarily the defining factor.

    Most helmets are probably made in China and most probably cost about the same to manufacture. Some may have better quality straps and fittings etc but the general construction of most helmets is pretty similar. Helmets from bigger brands, like Specialized, Trek etc, might be well designed with nice features but they will also carry a much bigger mark-up. Go into a shop and look at a £40 helmet and a £100 helmet and see if you can identify the manufacturing differences that would justify the price difference?

    On the other hand, there is no reason why someone couldn't produce a helmet with similar features to a pricey one at a lower cost. It just so happens that I have a perfect example sitting in the house. I just bought my youngest son a Cannondale helmet which retails for less than half the price of the cheapest Specialized one, and it's fine. It's light, fits well, has one of those automatic adjuster knobs on the back, has very good ventilation and looks quite stylish. It cost less than a third of the price of my specialized helmet and I think it's better!

    There is so much snobbery about bike stuff it's unbelievable. Men are the same about anything they worship. The default position is to desire the most expensive example of product in question and to buy the most expensive you can afford. Seldom does the actual material value of the part in question enter the equation. Basically, men are egotistic morons who are led around by their willies! A lot of the time anyway, and I'm a man so I should know ;0)

  22. #22
    mtbr member
    Reputation: OldManBike's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2011
    Posts
    787
    Quote Originally Posted by TwoTone View Post
    It's a pass fail test, so you actually have no idea if the $20 is as safe as the $80. All you know they both met some minimum, but that doesn't mean they're the same.

    Can't wait til this antiquated system is gone.
    Truth.

  23. #23
    Grams Light Bikes
    Reputation: pastajet's Avatar
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    2,279
    Any helmet sold in the US has to meet one thing, it has to pass the CPSC (Consumer Product Safety Commission) test, end of story in that sense. Is one helmet safer than the other, that's debatable. Most of the current testing doesn't really match what is a human skull (a soft malleable viscous entity) vs an impact, but it's all we currently have. The test uses a steel headform which a helmet is placed on, they drop a metal anvil from a specific distance and the helmet must decrease the anvils impact by a set amount of G's onto the headform.

    Usually better helmets have a more functional adjustment and retention system, to help fit your head, and help keep the helmet in place during a ride and a crash. Additionally, some helmets are now using multi-zone EPS foam designs, different designs to adhere the shell to the foam, functional venting, etc. Does it make the helmet safer or better? That's a big unknown.

    To me the most important thing, does it fit your head properly and not deflect backwards off your head when the brow is pushed upwards. Fit is paramount. I think a good helmet from a reputable manufacturer is the way to go, and price is whatever you want to pay.

  24. #24
    mtbr member
    Reputation: J.B. Weld's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2012
    Posts
    2,651
    Quote Originally Posted by pastajet View Post

    To me the most important thing, does it fit your head properly and not deflect backwards off your head when the brow is pushed upwards. Fit is paramount. I think a good helmet from a reputable manufacturer is the way to go, and price is whatever you want to pay.
    word^

    Try this experiment- try on a dozen or so different helmets without noting the brand or price, then put aside the ones that are the most comfortable and fit the best without moving around. A dollar and a donut says the ones you pick as best aren't the cheapest ones.

  25. #25
    mtbr member
    Reputation: Mr Pig's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2008
    Posts
    1,281
    I found some great info on helmets. Here is a good article: LINK

    And further very extensive information can be found here if you follow the links on the page: LINK

Page 1 of 2 1 2 LastLast

Similar Threads

  1. BIG headed Helmets and Womens Helmets
    By NC-Biker in forum Apparel and Protection
    Replies: 28
    Last Post: 10-14-2012, 06:05 PM
  2. Opinions, bicycle helmets vs MX helmets
    By Scythe in forum Downhill - Freeride
    Replies: 47
    Last Post: 07-13-2012, 09:41 AM
  3. Helmets: Mtb vs Rd
    By Tips-Up in forum Apparel and Protection
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 05-18-2011, 01:48 PM
  4. Helmets...
    By willem3 in forum Oregon
    Replies: 23
    Last Post: 04-21-2011, 02:44 PM
  5. Help with Helmets
    By Okie Dokie in forum General Discussion
    Replies: 9
    Last Post: 04-19-2011, 12:14 AM

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •