DH Full Face Helmet - MX or Bike?- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1

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    DH Full Face Helmet - MX or Bike?

    Well,

    I'm sure this question has been asked before and is probably still plaguing some of us. When deciding on a new helmet for FR/DH riding, and trying not to put a price on your brain pan. How much do you really spend? Who has the best protection? And should I buy a Moto helmet because it's DOT certified? Sure their are weight differences, but are those grams really gonna matter if your plunging yourself down a hillside full of rock gardens and down trees.

    So, I pose the question: What is best and for what price?

  2. #2
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    I've never been let down by my Giro's. I had a Mad Max II back in the day, and a Remedy currently. They've taken some pretty weird hits before without problem. I imagine that the carbon one would be even better.

    MX helmets are totally and completely overkill for MTB, even gnarly DH. Unless you plan on going 65+ mph, or 60' high airs like the freestyle dudes, you probably aren't going to go beyond what a quality MTB helmet can handle. Given, you might need to replace it after a BIG hit, but you should do that with any kind of helmet anyway.

  3. #3
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    Excellent question, have been wondering about the benefits of Moto helmets also.

    Where I ride is hot and humid making any not well vented helmet a brain oven so considering a heavier and hotter helmet is kind of hard.

  4. #4

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    Understand the heat issue fully, I've had a 661 Comp helmet which cooked my head pretty good I thought I dropped a few hat sizes.

    However, not all helmets are the same. Some provide more ventilation than others. MX and Bike. Wouldn't you rather have a helmet which weighs a little more if it's cooler than one that's too hot and lighter? If your cooking in your hat the weight won't make a difference.

    And what about safety? Why is a DOT Cert Helmet overkill? If you need to replace the helmet after a big hit anyway, than why not have the best protection at the time of impact?

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by CheeseSoda
    I've never been let down by my Giro's. I had a Mad Max II back in the day, and a Remedy currently. They've taken some pretty weird hits before without problem. I imagine that the carbon one would be even better.

    MX helmets are totally and completely overkill for MTB, even gnarly DH. Unless you plan on going 65+ mph, or 60' high airs like the freestyle dudes, you probably aren't going to go beyond what a quality MTB helmet can handle. Given, you might need to replace it after a BIG hit, but you should do that with any kind of helmet anyway.
    I disagree......I have the Carbon Fiber Giro Remedy. It is a nice helmet and it is lite....however it feels like a toy helmet compared to the Azonic/O'neil 708 this helmet Exceeds SNELL, DOT, ECE 22/04 and AS standards.

    Basically you know how fast you ride, your style, how big you go, and how treacherous the terrain is. If you ride fast, rockgardens, steeps, and send it,... then I would get the 708. The weight difference isn't that much of a penalty compared to the Carbon Fiber Remedy but the protection is insane. You just feel safe in that helmet and the comfort level wearing the helmet is so nice
    the trick is ENJOYING YOUR LIFE EACH DAY, don't waste them away wishing for better days

  6. #6
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    both are fine, just make sure it has adequate ventilation to keep your head cool so you will be able to react faster.

  7. #7
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    Lol well if you would like to use that "why not?" kind of reasoning, then get yourself a mattress, some duct tape, a suit of armor, a couple of astronaut helmets...
    Sometimes too much, is actually too much.
    Of course this is generalization, and there are certainly exceptions, but a MTB helmet will generally be lighter, more venting, etc. And in the event of a crash, there might be a crack in the shell, versus the dent that might be in an MX helmet... But you would probably have to replace either.
    Moral of the story: a helmet is a helmet. Wear whatever makes you feel safe/comfortable. The important thing is that you're wearing a helmet in the first place haha stay in school, kids.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by CheeseSoda
    Moral of the story: a helmet is a helmet. .
    no way.....I guess you don't see the use of a little stronger helmet..I guess you ride easier trails and don't see the need for it....but here is the facts.....the trails we ride are treacherous. EVERYONE of the local riders have switched to a MX helmets. As a group we have less headaches and concussions because of the better protection of a MX helmet.

    If you have not tried a 708 series Azonic/Oneil then maybe look into it. I ride in 100 plus in the summer and it still has enough ventilation....
    the trick is ENJOYING YOUR LIFE EACH DAY, don't waste them away wishing for better days

  9. #9
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    Not to get into an argument but how humid it gets when you ride in 100ds?

    I'm in the tropics and humidity is what kills us.

    The Azonic looks and in paper seems to be an excellent choice but the lack of vents is what worries me.

  10. #10
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    No doubt there is a tradeoff between heat and protection. I run a Fox V3 helmet for moto and DH and it is a pretty warm helmet. But my kids have Azonic and Giro DH helmets and SMT is right, they feel like toys in comparison. The funny thing is they aren't that much lighter, maybe 1/2 lb. but there just isn't much substance there. IMO a light moto helmet is the best option and if you are shop a bit you can get one for about the same price as a DH lid.
    Pivot Firebird, Tomac Snyper, KTM 250SX

  11. #11

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    I agree with stretch169. A light Moto can provide the right protection and you can get one with good ventilation. Also, if you ride MX you don't need to buy another helmet.

  12. #12
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    Same here

    .....I just bought a TLD MX helmet with all of the ratings, certs, etc. - after going to the ER with some non-helmet related bike injuries and looking at my out-of-pocket costs WITH health insurance, spending a few more bucks on a DOT, SNELL, etc. helmet seems like a bargain.

    On a non-thread related question, anyone have thoughts on a goggle that will fit the TLD D2 SE-2 FF helmet? The opening is rather small compared to other helmets, I have noticed.
    The reason dogs have so many friends is that they wag their tail instead of their tongues.

  13. #13
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    I also run the Fox V3, and have been very happy with it. Yes, it's warm/hot, but if I'm not pedaling (DH in other words, as compared to FR sessions) then I take it off.
    I started thinking about getting one after starting pure DH, thought about it, but still rode with my Giro Remedy. Then I went out and bought one.

    One reason for my purchase of a Moto (DOT/Snell) helmet was reading about a nasty crash at Highland Bike Park in NH. I don't have the specifics, but... (forums , you know.....)
    Supposedly a rider took a bad spill, wearing a S deviant helmet (again, true or not - not sure..) and landed on his face. Helmet failed, result was an open mandibular fracture.....
    (Think American History X curb incident......)
    The thought of the front of a light/comfortable helmet failing in that way should make you want to run, not walk to the nearest MX shop. I know I did.

    For lighter all mountain/FR on smaller type terrain, I still wear my Giro Remedy.

  14. #14

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    I'm running a TLD MX also at the moment. It's not that heavy and provides good ventilation But it is time for a new one. So, if sticking with an MX helmet, who's got the best bang for the buck?

    And if sticking with a bike helmet, same question.....

    If you have crashed your helmet before, how fast do you think you were going? Would like to have a comparison for everyone...

  15. #15
    should know better.....
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    Something that is obvious, but should be stated in any case when these threads come up,(armor, helmets, gloves etc..) is that if you crash, at any speed:
    You are no longer in control!!!!

    Stuff is gonna happen, to you, and or your bike. The very fact that you've crashed means that momentum, kinetic energy, potential energy, gravity, obstacles, the ground, your bike, and YOU are all gonna combine in some kind of pile.
    The helmet may save you, it may not. According to some anti helmet Moto riders, and cyclists, (yes they do exist) the helmet itself may hurt you, most likely by twisting your head and breaking your spine somehow, leaving you alive, but a parapalegic or vegetable. This will be because of the helmet's weight, and shape. Bigger than your noggin, and not as round. I personally think that's a load of cr*p, but it exists as a theory.
    Anyway, any helmet can still fail, but during a crash from a higher speed, or greater height, I want the most protection I can get, hence the DOT helmet. I'm just trying to better my odds. The helmet review that started going up has some great info (graphs, and links) about impact forces.

    My own analogy is that of dropping a raw egg onto a table from about 6" in the air. No padding, the egg breaks. Put a pile of paper towels under it, it doesn't break. I don't want my "egg" to break.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by CheeseSoda
    I've never been let down by my Giro's. I had a Mad Max II back in the day, and a Remedy currently. They've taken some pretty weird hits before without problem. I imagine that the carbon one would be even better.

    MX helmets are totally and completely overkill for MTB, even gnarly DH. Unless you plan on going 65+ mph, or 60' high airs like the freestyle dudes, you probably aren't going to go beyond what a quality MTB helmet can handle. Given, you might need to replace it after a BIG hit, but you should do that with any kind of helmet anyway.
    I have broken a Mad Max fiber carbon on a big crash (both the foam and the carbon fiber shell). Fortunately my head still in one piece. But I still think it's a good helmet.

    Now, about using a MX or a MTB helmet, I prefer the MTB helmets because they are lighter and they protect prety well your face while riding a bike. I don't like MX helmets because they weight more and I can feel the difference, especially when I'm riding these loooong trails on the Andes of Peru. Maybe for a short DH race (2 to 3 minutes) could be an option (only those lighter MX helmets).
    ride the best Inca trails in Peru: www.inkasadventures.com

  17. #17

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    If you cant handle a few more grams from a MX style FF helmet, do some neck exercises. Harden up. I wear an MX helmet and i love it.

  18. #18
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    I called Bell a couple years ago, they recommend a MX for going over 35 mph. MX lids have more padding and are bulkier, which can be a liability. Seems like you need to evaluate the type of riding, exertion level, and climate to find the right choice. I don't ride 40+ mph very often, and my exertion level can be high, so a bike helmet seems like the way to go. I got a TLD D2, which I think is a great design if it fits your head.

  19. #19
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    I got knocked out in my Giro Remedy so i felt the need for a Dot helmet. I went with the Fox V3. Its perfect. It fits great and hardly feels any heavier than most composite helmets. They can be found for about 175 if you look around.
    "Ride Life Ride Giant"

  20. #20

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    Seems like the V3 is very popular. I'll have to check it out.

  21. #21
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    I ride with a MX helmet but that's just because I got it super cheap. Ha it feels like brick and it doesn't have any ventalation except the face guard thing. I guess you give up cooling for protection in a lot cases.
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  22. #22
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    The V3 has decent ventilation too
    "Ride Life Ride Giant"

  23. #23
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    I have a giro remedy (standard) and really like it tons over my moto-helmet for dh. My moto helmet is way to hot. I dont mind it in moto, cuz you go way bigger and are going faster. Plus you dont have to peddle, and dont get as hot. (yes, even dh you still have to peddle). My giro has lots of vents and stays way cooler. Also, I took 3 HARD head hits with my giro last year. It took some chunks out of the shell, but thats about it. Still walked away from all of them. I really think that you hit your head more in dh then moto, or at least I do. A couple of my buddys got vented mtb helmets instead of wearing their moto helmets and are very satisfied with the additional comfort.

    I say, go mtb vented full face. But its your head.

  24. #24
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    I've ridden both MX and MTB full face helmets. I don't go too nuts, but when I'm doing big stuff or really technical DH, I sometimes wish I had my MX helmet. When I do lift-assist, it's MX all the way cause i don't have to worry about pedaling.

  25. #25
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    Quote Originally Posted by DiRt DeViL
    Not to get into an argument but how humid it gets when you ride in 100ds?

    I'm in the tropics and humidity is what kills us.

    The Azonic looks and in paper seems to be an excellent choice but the lack of vents is what worries me.

    tough call....I live in SoCal and rarely does the humidity get over 30 (or something low like that)....it would be a biatch to wear the Azoni/Oneil 708 in the tropics......but I have done it....I usually just pour cool water over my head and hair....and then just ride....if it gets too much then I pour a little more water
    the trick is ENJOYING YOUR LIFE EACH DAY, don't waste them away wishing for better days

  26. #26
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    Love my v3 montage but its a hot mo-fo and bulky as hell . However its the lightest mx helmet I have found @2.9 lbs. It also is vented better than most but still hot . I use my v3 when riding downhill but anything that requires me to pedal I wear my deviant.


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