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Open Face Helmet - Advice Needed

Discussion in 'Riding Gear and Bike Accessories/Parts' started by Human Potato, Nov 23, 2008.

  1. Hi Guys,

    I am gonna buy myself an open face helmet for summer (for about $100-$250) and I need advice from people who have EXPERIENCE in open face helmets.

    The things I am not sure about are:
    - Do I need the peak/visor that are offered by some models?
    - Quick Release strap mechanisms. I have only ever used the old style D-ring setup, are the quick release ones any good?
    - "shorty" style hlemets - are they street legal? Comfortable?
    - brands: I know that different brands fit different people, but are there any brands that are absolute rubbish? What about really great brands.
    - any other advice that can only be gained from wearing open face helmets for years?

    My goal is to get a helmet that is light and will allow the wind to keep my face and head dry and cool.

    p.s. - I don't need any advice about having my face torn off or my jaw shattered. If I wanted 100% safety I would drive a volvo.
  2. I have no answers for you, but I'm lookinbg at a open face helmet as well.

    Not sure of the riding you're looking at, but alot of these openface helmets with the visor might suffer wind turbulance at highweays speeds. Was hoping for open-face wearers to chime in with the type/brand of open face helmets they use & what they find works well.

    I'm looking at doing lots of open road going. Not sure how just sunglasses & maybe a hanky over the face will work on the highways.

    Love to have something that doesn't make me look like a Chuppa Chup as well.... hmmm.
  3. "Spud" and Marx, maybe you might get better info from posting in the tourers/cruisers forum???? Just a thought ...
  4. My open face spare lid has quite a big 'lip' from my forehead out to the edge of the helmet. It catches the wind at 100kmh and tries to choke me. Any faster and it'd have a real chance. Perhaps things are better with a little peak thing, I'm not sure, it could be a general problem with open facers or just this specific type.

    I love riding around with a bare face, it's the way things should be - but it's much more comfy having a full face on the freeway. So I use a nolan flip face, best of both worlds. Bit heavy, bit noisy, and it don't look cool but I don't care, I get the wind in my face when I want it, and full face protection and wind sheilding whenever I need it.
  5. Generally two types of open face helmets - the three quarter and half or "bowl" style

    So long as it has an Australia Standard sticker complying to AS1698 - you are fine. (Note; Safety Nazis who rely on their gear to save them rather than riding skill may have a differing view :wink: )

    The Peak will try and rip your head off anything above around 90kmh - some of the better ones have proper airflow peaks - but the cheapies generally have hard plastic.

    Have only had the "D" rings, not that much hassle. But imagine the quick release work or we'd hear about it.

    Have a pair of Wiley X glases - interchangeable lenses - so easy enough to ride day/night.

    Never got into the bandana (hanky) thing

    Having said all that, now wear a flip face
  6. I did many, many thousands of miles under an AGV open face and quite a few in my (illegal) Davida pudding basin. Loz and Toecutter have covered the main points pretty well I think.

    The only point I'd add (and it goes for full-face lids too) is on the subject of snap type buckles. I don't, personally, like 'em much. I find that they tend to slacken off with use and require regular readjustment, which needs a conscious effort to do, whereas D-ring straps are adjusted every time you do them up.

    Openfaces are ace in summer and at lowish speeds. If you're doing much long distance/highway work, a nice full-face scores in the comfort/weather protection stakes. I've tried the scarf thing, but find that it won't stay in place. Maybe my nose is the wrong shape :wink: .

    As for the safety aspect touched on by Toecutter, meh, if I was that worried, I'd buy a nice Volvo :grin: .
  7. i've had a few...the really cheap ones made in china have only lasted about a month before starting to fall apart...plus they give that giant mushroom trying to pull your head of effect at freeway speeds...then i forked out and bought a shoie...that was more comfortable, well padded, even a bit quieter...but still tried to choke me...my favorite one by far is made by kbc...it's very small and fits quite tight around and below ears...has a small peak...and if you sit it on your head right, sitting in your natural slouch, dose'nt lift up at all...actually theres hardly any foam in it and with barely any noise blocked out you'd barely know you were wearing a helmet by comparison to most...with it i wore the stocking thin summer balaclavas...keeps the sun of the back of your neck and makes rain bearable at higher speeds...and i wore jet ski goggles for the thin layer of foam...sometimes sunnies, but you still get grit in your eyes occassionally with sunnies...i did try the clipon full visor once...not much good and really bad if you do a head check at speed...
    unfortunately for me, i can't wear an open faced anymore...because a few months ago i had the pleasure of dining with a few bikers in hospital who had worn open faced helmets...well anyway, i dined, they sucked...which is hard for me because i started riding with open faced and like they say, the habbits you start with you are stuck with for life...i can bear wearing a full helmet with chin bar now so long as the visor is up and i've got sunnies...but i still hate snapping the visor down when i hit the freeway...but as said, i don't have a choice..
    as a side note, another thing i've noticed is the full face i own now feels a lot lighter when you weigh it up with an open faced, one in each hand...but it it quite an expensive helmet..
    but if open faced is your thang, check ot the kbc with a small snap on peak, retails about $160
  8. did someone mention wearing a scarf on a motorbike :LOL: :LOL: :LOL: :LOL:

    now that i'd like to see...wheels go round, scarf flapping around ahahaaa
  9. your skills are irrelevent when you're not at fault
  10. Standard wear for an awful lot of serious riders in less clement climates than Australia. Most commonly the big PLO type jobbies. No problem whatsoever if firmly tied and well tucked in. Alternatively, there's the rocker style white silk variety. Also fine if worn sensibly.

    Given sufficiently developed riding skills, it's remarkable how few "not at fault" incidents it's possible to have.

    Still, at least you base your objection to open face lids on having actually met a few folk who got unlucky, rather than the more usual "brother's mate's uncle's boss" stories.
  11. Hmmm, I didnt even think about the helmet trying to choke me to death, thats the kind of info I was looking for. My daily commute includes a couple of minutes at 100km/h. Is this kind of speed likely to make the helmet try to rip my head off, or are we talking more like illegal speeds?
  12. 100's chokey time with mine, depending on the wind. I'm sure others are better. Check out a flip face if you can handle looking like a courier not a bad-ass, they've got the lot.
  13. On a naked bike, my AGV was fine up to 130 km/h as long as I kept the strap tight. With a screen or a fairing directing the windblast under its front edge, 110 was about the comfortable max, although it wasn't unbearable above that.

    The pudding bowl was comfy, if noisy, up to 200.

    A few minutes at 100 km/h shouldn't be a problem in any properly fitting, properly secured open-face.
  14. first up I totally recommend a full face.

    But to your question, I have ridden up to 135kph with my open face KBC, it was fine, no chocking.

    Although now I ride with my full face Shoei, comfort is way better, on the hottest days all I need is to crack the visor open one 'click' and its much quieter.