Choosing a helmet?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1

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    Choosing a helmet?

    What are people's opinions on bike helmets? Which ones are good? Are the expensive ones worth it?

  2. #2
    Self proclaimed idiot
    Reputation: MattCharettePhotography's Avatar
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    Pick up a decent helmet, it kind of depends on what you are using it for, but make sure you get one that applies to your style of riding. You are looking for amount of vents, weight, features that help with comfort. There is a pretty good selection if you follow one of the adds on mtbr's main page here http://www.cambriabike.com/shopdispl...46&cat=Helmets, I would suggest going local though, try them on and go from there, You probably dont need a extremely high end helmet, hell I only spent 65 on mine, get something that is comfortable on your wallet as well as your head.
    Mountains will move under the man with enough will to make them do so.

  3. #3
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    Trying them on is one of the most important things, no matter how expensive it is or how good it looks, if you're between sizes where it doesn't fit comfortably or securely then it won't protect you well enough in a crash.

    In my opinion all helmets are designed to pass certain standards, so they should all do the job of protecting your head providing you buy one that fits well. Above fit I would also consider ventilation, particularly if you ride in a warmer climate. A comfortable helmet is one that ends up being worn every time!

    Personally I don't think those really pricey ones are worth it, you are paying for the lighter weight and also the brand / look / design, that being important to some people isn't so much important to me. But in saying that if the expensive helmet was the only one that fit me well then I'd probably just pay up.

    Now when it comes to DH helmets you can't escape the expense, but the protection is then even more crucial!

    I've got a MET crackerjack which is towards the cheaper end of the spectrum (I've also got a Fox Rampage that I picked up on sale for more adventurous riding). But the MET doesn't quite fit well any more I think the retention mechanism is worn. Anyway I think I'll do away with those retention mechanisms and try a DJ style lid next.

  4. #4

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    Quote Originally Posted by ducktape
    Trying them on is one of the most important things, no matter how expensive it is or how good it looks, if you're between sizes where it doesn't fit comfortably or securely then it won't protect you well enough in a crash.

    In my opinion all helmets are designed to pass certain standards, so they should all do the job of protecting your head providing you buy one that fits well. Above fit I would also consider ventilation, particularly if you ride in a warmer climate. A comfortable helmet is one that ends up being worn every time!

    Personally I don't think those really pricey ones are worth it, you are paying for the lighter weight and also the brand / look / design, that being important to some people isn't so much important to me. But in saying that if the expensive helmet was the only one that fit me well then I'd probably just pay up.

    Now when it comes to DH helmets you can't escape the expense, but the protection is then even more crucial!

    I've got a MET crackerjack which is towards the cheaper end of the spectrum (I've also got a Fox Rampage that I picked up on sale for more adventurous riding). But the MET doesn't quite fit well any more I think the retention mechanism is worn. Anyway I think I'll do away with those retention mechanisms and try a DJ style lid next.
    what kinda helmet would a DJ style one be?
    I still have to pick up a helmet and im still not 100% sure what type.

  5. #5
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    Wink "Brain Buckets" ARE lifesavers!

    Glad you are willing to wear one. My thoughts and experiences are similar to those above, find one that fits and ALWAYS wear it. I used to race motorcycles and was knocked unconcious twice, not fun. Been on my head a couple of times on my bike, and darn gald I had one. I see lots of people refusing to wear them due to stupid reasons (IMHO) like "helmet hair', too heavy, etc or my personal favorite, "I'm not a bike racer". I tell them that many body parts can be fixed/replaced, (I should know 3 hip replacements); BUT your "computer" (brain) can NOT be fixed/replaced.
    I stop people on the trail when I see them without one and ask politely to please get one and wear it. Most people say "yeah you're right".
    Like someone said above, they all neeed to meet certain standards, and look inside them to see if they have the DOT and/or Snell stickers.
    Try them all on and buy the one that fits the best. Go to a bike shop so they help you to fit it.
    Good for you!
    Training on Hills Builds Character, That's How I Got To Be One!

  6. #6
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    I picked up a Giro Xen as it was the most comfortable of the ones I tried on. So far I really like this helmet. I got it for under $100.

  7. #7
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    +1 for Giro. They make a great assortment of helmets. Xen, E2, Hex. All great. Or just get a cheapo Bell. They all work, look decent, keep ya cool. Doesn't matter, just be safe.
    1x9 Hardtail, yummy.....

  8. #8
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    There are many threads where riders have shown the aftermath of not wearing a helmet. Although I've only been riding for about 4 months, I've kind of gone without a helmet many times. However, yesterday I was headed to the rock gardens and took my full-face helmet with me. I had a freak accident that had never occurred before and I endo'd only a few cranks into my ride. There are now scratches where my cheek and side of my head would have been exposed. I didn't feel anything at all on my head/face...my shoulder and arm hurt like heck, so I guess I should get some armor as well. I'm happy that I was wearing my full-face and not a "cool" bike helmet. Accidents happen and you never know when! Be prepared for the worst!

  9. #9
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    The funny thing about all this helmet talk is that many years ago when I was a kid, they didn't have bike helmets and we rode our Schwinn Stingrays on ramps and all kinds of jumps. Yes we took many tumbles but I never knew of anyone getting a head injury. Now they make bike helmets and other safety gear and folks are getting all kinds of injuries.

  10. #10
    I AM I AM
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    A DJ Style lid is like Protec, Fox Transition etc . .
    Fox Transition pictured below..

    website where I got the picture from
    DJ lids offer more protection than some XC lids but as a result don't have as good ventilation. Kind of like a Stack Hat you may have worn as a kid.

    The Fox Transition is probably a DJ lid with more ventilation compared to some of them. Troy Lee also makes some helmets which are a cross between a DJ lid and a DH lid - they're like a downhill helmet without the face protection. Those sort of helmets you would go for if say you ride skate park and other stuff where you may fall on the back of your head so need that sort of portection which plain XC helmets don't offer as much.
    There are some XC helmets (sort of classed as All Mountain) that offer more protection than ohter XC lids and yet still give ample venting (I think Fox makes one such helmet - can't think of the name of it).

    Anyway what are you looking for in a helmet? What sort of riding do you do? Give us some info and I'm sure people can point you in the right direction.

  11. #11
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    First, from the cheapest Kmart Blue Light special helmet to the most expensive Giro helmet, ALL of them meet the same safety standards. As you spent more on a helmet, you get better features, like weight, venting and micro adjustments. I would recommend a range of $75-$100 for your helmet. Go to your LBS and try different ones on, see which one fits YOU best.

  12. #12
    local trails rider
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    Get a helmet that fits.
    Try before you buy.

    I have had all sorts of spills but have never fallen hard on my head. The removable vizor has come off in a couple of tumbles and there are surface scratches from tree branches and such. Better have it but not need it...

  13. #13
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    I guess this is an appropriate place to ask the question on full face helmets. I generally consider myself a XC/mild trail rider but the trails I do while visiting the home town are vary from XC, to all mountain, to downhill. After using my chin, tree branch, and my regular helmet as makeshift brakes, I'm wondering if a full face is a good idea. I probably will never compete in DH but may go down them once in a while. So I got a couple of questions on full face helmets:

    1. Is what I'm suggesting overkill and bordering on paranoia? (Basically, should I simply improve my technique to prevent this from happening again?)
    2. What kind of budget should I set aside for a helmet? Right now I'm considering roughly 100 bucks.
    3. Is airflow much worse than the average regular helmets?
    4. What other disadvantages are there other than weight?

  14. #14
    local trails rider
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    Full Face disadvantages:
    - they can get much hotter than "normal" bike helmets.
    - the big chin guards tend to restrict breathing: the fresh air has more difficulties replacing the used air in front of your face.

    Advantages.
    - Protection
    - Protection
    - Protection

    You have to weigh your risks against the disadvantages.
    (or you could ride up using a "normal" helmet and do the downhill wearing a FF. Many hydrations packs are equipped to carry helmets and protectors on the outside.)

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