What's Your Favorite Helmet (XC Riding)- Mtbr.com
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  1. #1
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    What's Your Favorite Helmet (XC Riding)

    I am in the market for a new helmet and was considering the Giro Animas. I really like the Giro Atmos I have for the road mostly for the ventilation and I am thinking the Animas is comparable in a MTB helmet. What's your favorite? Ventilation and fit are my biggest issues. I know many state how light they are but come on, they are all light so I don't even consider that an issue for me.

  2. #2
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    The Giro E2 is the only helmet I've ever felt completely comfortable in. I have two different model years; when new these helmets feel as if they're not on my noggin--and stay that way for years--couldn't ask for anything more.

  3. #3
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    I looked at the E2 but it has less vents, 24 -vs- 27 on the Animas. I suppose less vents doesn't automatically mean less air flow. The vents on the E2 could be larger. Anyone know?

  4. #4
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    i second the E2. I would NEVER drop full MSRP on a helmet like this, but you can grab new 06' models right now for $70. I went to the LBS, tried one on to find my size, and ordered online. I am very happy with it. I really dont know how you could have a helmet be much lighter or cooler than the E2 and still be protective. It looks great too.

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  5. #5
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    I have been a big fan of the Bell Influx for years.......however, I have recently changed over to the Bell Sweep XC. I have to say it fits like a glove. Feels lighter on my head and I often forget that I am wearing it.

  6. #6

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    Check out the Bell Variant

    I just got mine and it's very light and fits perfectly. I barely know its on.

    I also ordered a Giro Xen because I liked the white/green color scheme and ended up sending the helmet back. I felt a big pressure point on the left rear of the helmet. I guess my dome wasn't made to fit in Giro's helmets.

    Head to the LBS and try some on.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by KPVSR
    I am in the market for a new helmet and was considering the Giro Animas. I really like the Giro Atmos I have for the road mostly for the ventilation and I am thinking the Animas is comparable in a MTB helmet. What's your favorite? Ventilation and fit are my biggest issues. I know many state how light they are but come on, they are all light so I don't even consider that an issue for me.
    The one that fits me best. For the past several years that has been the Giro Semi (now discontinued). Happens to be the only Giro helmet that fits my head. Otherwise I find that Bell helmets fit me fairly well.
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  8. #8
    jrm
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    i find ..

    Quote Originally Posted by KPVSR
    I am in the market for a new helmet and was considering the Giro Animas. I really like the Giro Atmos I have for the road mostly for the ventilation and I am thinking the Animas is comparable in a MTB helmet. What's your favorite? Ventilation and fit are my biggest issues. I know many state how light they are but come on, they are all light so I don't even consider that an issue for me.

    that i get the best fit with helmets that are 1/2 sized like m/l and come with two sets of pads depending on the noggin size. i do have to use a halo sweatband because i have yet to find a helmet with a functional device that redirects sweat off your face. Bell m/l fit me the best and i use them for road and dirt..

  9. #9
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    ive got a bell slant that im quiet fond of and its pretty inexpensive. before that i had a Giro that was ok too but cant remember the model name.

  10. #10
    vegan cyclocross disco
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    I like bells but got a specialized high end helmet (the one with the oval vent in front) and love it. not as breathable as the bells but super comfortable.

  11. #11
    conjoinicorned
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    the Giro's seem to fit very "round"....i don't like mine. the bells seem to fit "longer" and fit me much better.

    it's all about the fit, i've never found an appreciable difference in venting design etc.
    what would rainbow unicorn do?

  12. #12
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    Bell X-Ray, fits me very well. Low profile. I used a Giro E2 several years an thought of it as a very good helmet, but Bell its simply superior.
    "I will not relent"

  13. #13
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    FWIW - I have an Animas and I love it. It's well ventilated and very comfortable (to me) on long trips. But I like all Giro fits.

  14. #14
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    I like my Xen

    I also like my Specialized S1

  15. #15
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    I prefer the Bell Sweep. I just like the fit system. I think after reading this thread you will realize that you need to try on every type of helmet to find the 2-3 that fit you the best. Then you shop online to find it for 70-80 bucks if its a top of the line model. My sweep was 75 on clearance.

  16. #16
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    Gotta say the Xen is the only helmet I've found (other than my full face) that fits securely.

  17. #17
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    I second the Xen. Fox also just came out with one; looks nice and received good reviews.

  18. #18
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    Limar 909

    Best ever.

  19. #19
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    I've had two E2s and an Atmos. The retention system broke on one of the E2s and the Atmos in the exact same place. Neither from crashes. They sent me a new retention system, and I wear the newer E2, I definitely love the look of the E2 and have never had a problem with their fit, just dunno about that retention system design..

  20. #20
    TranceX Rider
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    Giros

    Animas '04 & Xen '05. Both fit me like a glove Nice having 'em like that since I wear Gutr sweatband. Never tried anything else.

    But lately, I've been eyeing for a Fox Flux. But problem is, it's still not available locally where I am right now. I need to try one if it fits me well then I'd order online afterwards. Does it fit very "round" like the Giros..? Or like the Bells seem to fit "longer"?

    TIA!
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    There was no need to scare potential buyers and burn bridges "buddy"
    Tell me now, what's Product testing all bout then?

  21. #21
    fastdownhill
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    Quote Originally Posted by Onie
    Animas '04 & Xen '05. Both fit me like a glove Nice having 'em like that since I wear Gutr sweatband. Never tried anything else.

    But lately, I've been eyeing for a Fox Flux. But problem is, it's still not available locally where I am right now. I need to try one if it fits me well then I'd order online afterwards. Does it fit very "round" like the Giros..? Or like the Bells seem to fit "longer"?

    TIA!
    I picked this up the other day Fox Flux flux 004.jpg

  22. #22
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    Specialized

    The specailized Decible is by far the lightest feeling best ventilated and most comfortable helmet that I have ever used. I have used E2's and they don't even come close to me.

  23. #23
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    I gotta say try a Bell sweep xc, it is the best helmet so far that I have used. It does feel light and fits very good. I got it on ebay for $80 and no shipping, i picked it up and it was brand new, a 06 model gotten last yr. Another person say the sweep xc it is good.

  24. #24
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    I have a 2006 Giro Xen in the cammo color. Love it!

    I also had a 2002 Specialized Enduro helmet that was quite nice.

  25. #25
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    Like Shiggy says, THE ONE THAT FITS!
    Seriously, Giro styling made me go try them on, then I replaced my Bell with a BELL because it fit well.

  26. #26
    EastBaySteez
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    Skate lid FTW, yes even for XC.
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  27. #27
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    I trried an E2 and a Animas at the store over the weekend and for me it seemed the E2 fit great compared to the Animas. The animas had a little wobble to it when fully tightened in the same size and set up as the E2.
    I see Bell has had some great reviews here but for some reason I can't get past associating Bell with Wal-Mart type stores. I am sure Bell has great high end hemets but the crap in Wal-Mart is......well, eh, um.......crap!

  28. #28
    Nouveau Retrogrouch SuperModerator
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    Quote Originally Posted by KPVSR
    I trried an E2 and a Animas at the store over the weekend and for me it seemed the E2 fit great compared to the Animas. The animas had a little wobble to it when fully tightened in the same size and set up as the E2.
    I see Bell has had some great reviews here but for some reason I can't get past associating Bell with Wal-Mart type stores. I am sure Bell has great high end hemets but the crap in Wal-Mart is......well, eh, um.......crap!
    Check the fit without tightening the head clamps. It should still be a reasonably close fit.

    Get over the thing with Bell. The in-shell molded helmets are basically the same construction as the Giros. The shapes and head clamps differ giving a different fit. They may work better for you.
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  29. #29
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    I had a Giro Gila that I absolutely loved for a few years. Its day came and it performed it duty. I recently replaced it with an E2 recently, and it just doesn't fit as well as my old helmet. I really want to try a Fox Flux.

  30. #30
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    I've recently tried on the Fox Flux and it fits and looks great!

    I ride both road and mtn pretty regularly. I've always ridden my road helmet on the trail but i'm starting to wonder if I need two helmets. My question is this...

    would it be a disgrace to fox's style to rock the Flux without wearing baggies?

  31. #31
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    Caution;  Merge;  Workers Ahead! Vigor helmets?

    It looks like Giro and Bell have the majority. What about the Vigor line? I crashed my last Giro, but I saw a great price on a Viper helmet.


    It looks great and seems to have plenty of ventilation. Any feedback is appreciated.
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  32. #32
    Ride Everything
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    Try on everything you can find at your LBS and buy the one that fits you best.

    I really like my Giro Xen (which I got for a song on Amazon), but it's all about the fit.

  33. #33
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    As many others said... get that one which fits best, not that one which we will suggest you. I never liked Giro. Yes it looks cool, it's also pretty expensive, but it just doesn't fit to my head... not even one of their models. So I went with Met 5th element which fits nicely for me (and it doesn't look all that bad either ). But even then, few other Met helmets didn't fit well, so it's really important to try as many as you can.
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  34. #34
    dcubed
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    Quote Originally Posted by wrxg33k
    I've recently tried on the Fox Flux and it fits and looks great!

    I ride both road and mtn pretty regularly. I've always ridden my road helmet on the trail but i'm starting to wonder if I need two helmets. My question is this...

    would it be a disgrace to fox's style to rock the Flux without wearing baggies?
    I am with ya!

    Always used my roadie helmet. Then tried a bunch of MTB helmets on, went with the Fox Flux. I couldnt be happier in a helmet.

  35. #35
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    Giro E2 for the past 4 years.

    It's the only helmet that I forget I am wearing and stays put. Every Bell I have ever owned constantly slips forward no matter how I adjust it and I am always pushing it back while riding. I was so irritated with a Bell helmet on one ride in particular, I pulled it off and through it in a tantrum. It wound up about 25 feet up in a pine tree. Needless to say, I rode back to the car without a helmet.

  36. #36
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    I like my gyro hex - i think its pretty comparable to the xen, but at a nicer price. It fits my head like a glove so guess I am lucky so far in that regard. I would think it and the xen might be a little hotter in the summer even with the vents because it has a somewhat lower profile to provide protection more like a bmx. This summer I might be using my trek helmet again if I find my brain is cooking.

  37. #37
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    Just last night I bought a Bell Solar... I was surprised at the fit considering it's only a $30 helmet, but feels really good. Wore it on my commute in today and am happy. Comfortable and breathes fairly well.

    I also have a Giro Indicator (roughly same price range) and it's okay. I would've kept it but it got banged up in a recent spill, and didn't want to take any chances.

    Between the two, I really like the rear adjustment on the Bell better than the Giro.

  38. #38
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    I have been looking for the longest time to find a helmet that is a lower profile to fit my smaller head. I just received a Specialized aurora and it fits and looks great.

  39. #39
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    I ride an E2 most of the time (eg, when racing), but occasionally on colder days I'll use an Avanti Razor, which though less ventilated is 70g lighter than the E2.

    The E2 is always used at night due to it having more vents in which the light mount straps can be run through.

  40. #40
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    like others, i love my giro e2. giros seem to fit me well, and i also ski in a giro.

  41. #41
    JmZ
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    Quote Originally Posted by TrekJeff
    It looks like Giro and Bell have the majority. What about the Vigor line? I crashed my last Giro, but I saw a great price on a Viper helmet.


    It looks great and seems to have plenty of ventilation. Any feedback is appreciated.
    Just got one as a spare. (Killed two helmets last year, figured it was a good idea to keep a spare around.) Local shop carried that and the Rudy Project and figured I'd try one one. Fit pretty good for my mellon.

    Have used Various Bells and Giros. X-Ray, Delirium being the recent Bells, and a Havoc as the recent Giro. The Bells were a bit better fit than the Giro, and the Vigor is about 1/2 between the Bells and the Giro.

    Good luck,

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  42. #42
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    Fit is foremost for a helmet. Get what fits.

    In my case, I prefer a skater style Giro Semi MX. Not the coolest thing in summer, but it does all season (including Alberta winters) well. Besides, my XC rides often mutate into XC and other stuff as things progress
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  43. #43
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    Like others have said...I love the Giro E2. I have an '06 model and they are all over the internet for $30-40 off MSRP.

  44. #44
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    the Bell retension/adjustment system is just so much superior to the flimsy feeling Giro push tab style. I can't believe anyone has mentioned that! IMO just no comparsion which makes the Bell's fit better as well.

    Bell and Giro are under coownership (to the fellow who implied Giro are higher end then walmart bell's)

  45. #45
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    Have a Xen.
    Tried a Hex.
    My next helmet will be another Xen. The Hex looked huge and the visor was up too high. I haven't tried any of the Bell helmets and the Fox Fury looks very interesting.

  46. #46
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    Have a Xen.
    Tried a Hex.
    My next helmet will be another Xen. The Hex looked huge and the visor was up too high. I haven't tried any of the Bell helmets and the Fox Fury looks very interesting.

  47. #47
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    I like my Bell Aquila Pro
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  48. #48
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    Here's another "get the one that fits" vote. Preferably the cheapest one that fits. Brand or model don't matter so long as it's comfortable.

    Helmets are basically lumps of molded foam with holes. Very low tech devices to solve a very low tech physical problem.

  49. #49
    mtbr member extraordinair
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    womble is right...which is why I am amazed that people spend upwards of $150 for a helmet. I use a Wally world special Bell helmet, $20. Fully adjustable and fits perfectly, even with a Jet light on top.
    Grit, spit, and a whole lot of duct tape!

  50. #50

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    i got last years giro havoc and love it. well im coming from a Bell that ive had since '96


  51. #51
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    Quote Originally Posted by Stupendous Man
    womble is right...which is why I am amazed that people spend upwards of $150 for a helmet. I use a Wally world special Bell helmet, $20. Fully adjustable and fits perfectly, even with a Jet light on top.
    While some may feel he is right I would certainly not trust my head/life to anything from Wally world & most certainly not a $20 helmet. Low grade helmets are made different then high grade helmets. I am not saying go out & spend $150 but damn, it's your head.

    Here is a link I just read that was sent to me yesterday. Man got his head run over wearing a helmet, lucky for him.
    http://www.madison.com/tct/news/index.php?ntid=133934
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  52. #52
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironbike1
    While some may feel he is right I would certainly not trust my head/life to anything from Wally world & most certainly not a $20 helmet. Low grade helmets are made different then high grade helmets. I am not saying go out & spend $150 but damn, it's your head.

    Here is a link I just read that was sent to me yesterday. Man got his head run over wearing a helmet, lucky for him.
    http://www.madison.com/tct/news/index.php?ntid=133934
    I crashed during a road race back in October. My Giro was cracked but all I had was a concussion and some road rash. I turned around and bought a end of the year model MSRP 150 bucks for maybe 90. I will never be cheap on a helmet.

  53. #53
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    I wore a Giro Gila from 2001 until last week... needless to say it was quite well used.

    I just replaced it with a Giro E2 and I have to say the the difference between the 2 is huge. The E2 sucks in so much air that it almost feels like your not wearing the helmet. Assuming you have the cash to blow and the helmet fits you, I would definately recommend the E2.

  54. #54
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    Walmart does not make the helmet, they just sell them. Bell is a very reputable helmet maker. You imply that the "low grade" helmets are less safe than the "high grade" ones. How do you know this?

    Besides, even the $150 Giro says that in the event of a crash you should REPLACE the helmet. That hurts the pocketbook more than the crash hurts the body!
    Grit, spit, and a whole lot of duct tape!

  55. #55
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    The helmet is the last thing to go cheap on:

    1. It protects your HEAD
    2. You should get one that is comfy so that you WILL wear it.
    3. Even the most expensive helmet is cheaper than a lot of pieces on your bike.

    Bottom Line: You can get a safe helmet for less than $60 easy. BUT, do your research, try them on, talk to people. Common sense... protect yourself.

  56. #56

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    All XC helmets have to meet the same protection requirements, so buy whatever one fits you best. A wally-world special is tested to the same standards as a $200 Giro.

  57. #57
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    Quote Originally Posted by ironbike1
    While some may feel he is right I would certainly not trust my head/life to anything from Wally world & most certainly not a $20 helmet. Low grade helmets are made different then high grade helmets. I am not saying go out & spend $150 but damn, it's your head.

    Here is a link I just read that was sent to me yesterday. Man got his head run over wearing a helmet, lucky for him.
    http://www.madison.com/tct/news/index.php?ntid=133934
    Would you care to back this blanket statement up with some verifiable research? Helmets are all certified to US and/or international standards, and they're all made of closed cell foam.

    Typically, the more expensive ones just have more and bigger holes in them. They're better ventilated, not stronger.

  58. #58
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    take a look...funk is not always good

    Take a look at Limar helmets.Every pad and strap can be removed and washed.This is so important to me that I cannot understand why Giro and the other "players" do not consider this aspect of helmet design.My experience leads me to believe that planned obsolescence is the motivation for most helmet manufacturers...oh well.
    Master of Laundry...Lord of Cleaning!

  59. #59
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    the folks saying high end helmets are safer and protect better need a reality check. Take a look at what makes up certification and saftey standards and realize its for ALL helmets sold. Have you done impact tests to back up your statements? LOL

    On higher end helmets your generally paying for better venting, retention systems, padding, lighter materials that meet the same standards.

    If your so worried about protection and think your $140 Bell Sweep XC is going to protect your noggin better than the $40 Bell Slant, get a freekin full face helmet which WILL be better.

    IMO when you get up to the huge venting helmets like the Sweep you are sacrificing saftey actually as you are chopping away at structual points and generally have less coverage on your head due to the minimalistic approach.

  60. #60
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    Actuall I believe that Giro is owned by Bell or vice versa. As far as the higher priced being stronger, it's all about the ratings that the helmets go through.
    This is a summary of our longer and much more detailed point by point helmet standards comparison. http://www.bhsi.org/stdchart.htm If a $40 Bell has a Snell 95 rating it's passed the same tests as a $150 Louis with a Snell 95 rating. You have to figure the replacement policy that manufactures have. Giro and other pricier lines have a pretty good replacement policy on new helmets. I cracked mine a month or so ago after a bull dozer went over my head, good thing I had my Giro on!!! I was looking at another Giro and the replacement but found a better fit in a different manufacture.

    So don't assume a helmet is better based on price. Or assume it's weak because it's vented, learn what the ratings are and make sure it's a good fit. Bottom line wear one, because you never know when that truck is going to run over your mellon...what a BS story.
    The wood is being bent! Let me know what you need!

  61. #61
    local trails rider
    Reputation: perttime's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2005
    Posts
    12,228
    My favorite helmet is one that fits me well. Bell Delirium is the best fit I have found for MY head, so far.

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