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can you get a decent helmet for under $500

Discussion in 'Riding Gear and Bike Accessories/Parts' started by stanga169, Oct 27, 2008.

  1. i have done some research and would like to know from the people who actually put their necks(and heads) on the line if you can get a good quality helmet for under 500 bucks . from what i have found is that from reviews in mags and websites that are fairly impartial is that you can . the "big three " brands are all very expensive but does that mean that it is better than something that is say made of same material but half the price. Rjays HJC Nitro etc all have helmets ranging from 100 upwards that in their top end alll seem to be fairly similar and have have same dot snell rating as the leading brands .Has anyone ever come off in a big way with a helmet that is not worth a months wage and had good results ?
    i would enjoy your imput on this my netrider comrades

  2. Check out, http://sharp.direct.gov.uk/ for non-anecdotal helmet safety ratings.

    Regardless of the perceived safety of a brand or type of helmet, the most important aspect in helmet purchase is fit and comfort.

    The safest helmet in the world will do a poor job in an accident if it doesn't fit your head properly.
  3. If we assume that all helmets as a minimum meet Australian standards then we look at noise, vents, colour and most of all fit. I would rather wear a noisy, pink $100 helmet that fitted than a $1,000 ubercool, quiet one that doesn't fit.

    I purchased an AGV for $449 that had been reduced from $699 as it was the previous year's graphics. It fitted me perfect and I am a happy camper.

    So find the helmet brand that fits and work from there.
  4. Just to elaborate on matti-san's last line,
    Each brand tends to build their helmets to fit a different shaped head. Some brands are for long-and-thin faces, some are for round-faced people, some are average.

    Should be able to find 2-3 brands which fit you properly, and explore their ranges from there. :)
  5. If you go by the SHARP test that DTwo referred to then price does not equal protection. Amongst the few helmets to receive a 5 star rating was one of the cheapest helmets they tested, a Lazer LZ6, i haven't seen them in this country though. Notably missing from the list of 5 star helmets where Shoei, Suomy and Nolan. The other interesting thing is that for AGV and Arai it wasn't there top of the line helmets getting 5 stars but their middle of the line.

    While the SHARP test can't be considered the be all and end all and a guarantee that in any given crash any particular helmet will be better than any other but in my research it's the best indication of a comparative rating that I've found. The main downside to the test is it's UK based so not all the helmets tested are available here and not all the helmets available here are on the list, such a RJays.

    In terms of real life experience my brother had an accident while wearing his RJays Fugative helmet which he paid about $340 for. He said was doing about 100km/h when the car turned across his path, estimates he would have slowed to maybe 80 by the time he hit and went headfirst into the car. He put a decent dent in the bonnet and cracked the helmet shell but both his head and neck where absolutely fine. His only injuries where a bruised elbow and a sore shin, oh and the bike was a write off.

    As others have said the fit and comfort are the most important things. If the helmet doesn't fit properly it can't do it's job properly so it's ability to protect you is compromised and a helmet that you find uncomfortable is going to be distracting while you ride.

    edit: it must have been $240 he paid, just did a quick check on MCAS and their currently reduced from $249.95 to $199.95
  6. I can't get away from the Nolan flip faces at $400. Brooyant lids.
  7. I have a Nolan which fits my square head very well (must be some germanic genes in my pool).
  8. Of course you can!!! Will people with Shoeis and Arais and AGVs look down on you? Of course they will. Who cares.

    My flip-front Nitro cost me less that $200; it's as quiet as most (I wear ear-plugs anyway) and has the convenience of not having to be taken off when I buy fuel...
  9. have a look at what peter stevens have on sale. haven't been there for a while but I got my shark rsr2 there for $400.
  10. There are plenty out there.
    I think BikeBiz have a lid sale on right now.
  11. Nope, can't be done. $1k minimum.
  12. I've had two offs that damaged helmets. Neither were big, but the helmet did do it's job. Mid level AGV and mid lever Vemar. Both worth around the $300 mark at purchase.

    I'm actually of the opposite mindset. I believe there is little point in paying more than $500 because mostly it's piss and wind after that.
  13. Rubbish.

    If you don't spend at least half your annual income on a helmet you will crash and die. Even if you don't hit your head :wink: .
  14. yeah a mate of mine is lookign at a new lid for his cruiser and of course he wanted an open face. When he saw the flippers he was in love. Yeah I reckon a good idea.

    OH Paul do I look down on people who wear cheap helmets? Nup.
  15. They are a bit noisy though. Something to do with the lack of foam around the ears to make room for the N-com system or something. Easily fixed with earplugs.

    Very comfortable fit and the flip has a reliable and solid locking system. Dunno how Loz got one for $400 though!
  16. I only paid $419 for mine back in May.
  17. Got my Shark RSR2 for 500 clams, awesome lid.