You get what you pay for is the old adage when buying a new motocross helmet you would not pay £10 to protect a £10 brain. A company like Arai make helmets which are heat resistant to 800 degrees C, and can withstand huge impacts. There are many makers on the market – Airoh, One Industries, Fly Racing, Just1 – who specialise in motocross helmets – but they differ from say F1 helmets or motoGP lids.
If you ride motocross then the helmet will be the most important piece of equipment you will own. Basically they protect against impact and come in all shapes and sizes – even with wings on or a Mohican – but there are a few crucial considerations when buying a motocross helmet.
One of the first things you need think about is its fit. Each rider’s head is shaped differently and so each helmet will fit and feel different. You should make sure you don’t feel any tight areas while wearing the helmet. Your motocross helmet may feel tight initially, and this is always the case but it will fit correctly after the liner compacts. There’s a difference between tight and snug. You also have to consider if the helmet fits low and give full head coverage. It would be no good if it slips down during races to obscure your vision. A good fit will also ease the feeling of the chin strap. A bad fitting helmet will increase the pressure on the chin strap.
The next things you have to consider is the liner. Some designs use a permanent liner, which can make cleaning it difficult. You should look to buy a motocross helmet that has a removable liner. They are much more convenient to wash and you will wonder how they get dirty so quick. The lining will gradually mould to the head and with modern advancements, they can be taken out and washed as the sweat and dirt build up. The idea is to machine wash and reinstall.
You will also need to think about the material used to make the shell of the motocross helmet. They should all come having met all the highest safety standards and common materials include fiberglass, composite fiber, carbon fiber, and Kevlar. If you’re concerned about the weight of the motocross helmet, then you should look for a design made from carbon fiber or Kevlar. These two materials are extremely strong and lightweight and of course you begin to pay through the nose for the lighter lids. You could pay £3,000 for a custom-made job but equally there are some great helmets to fit most budgets – from £80.
You should also pay attention to the eye ports on a helmet. Different models will use eye ports of various sizes. You need to make sure that the eye ports will be large enough to accommodate the goggles you will be wearing.
One of the next things you need to consider is the visor. The visor can be mounted using either plastic or metal mounting screws. It’s best to look for a motocross helmet that uses plastic screws to mount the visor. Plastic designs won’t destroy the visor in case of an accident.
These are a few tips for buying a motocross helmet. You should look for a design that uses a removable liner so that it’s convenient to clean. You should also look for a motocross helmet that has a shell made with carbon fiber and Kevlar due to their strength and light weight. Make sure that the eye ports are large enough to accommodate your goggles.
I’d recommend you never buy a secondhand helmet, be suspicious of something that costs £3 and ideally you would put on the helmet before you buy. There are now specialist retailers of motocross helmets like moto41 who offer advice and great customer service.
Your ready to race, amigos.
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