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Old 05-13-2009, 02:52 PM   #21
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If you shop the closeout sections of the race equipment sellers online you still find some SA2000 helmets. I'd buy SA2005 though as clubs will likely make that the minimum requirement in a few years.

Fit is it! You want to make sure you can return it if you buy online. I've got a Pyrotech helmet. It's OK. Fit's well but it's a little heavy. If you like the fit and weight and don't mind spending the scratch for that Lightning unit I say go for it.

The nice thing with helmets is the cheapest SA2005 helmet is still an SA2005 helmet! It's been tested and proven safe. The difference in costs have less to do with safety and more to do with looks, comfort, features and weight.
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Old 05-13-2009, 03:02 PM   #22
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Quote:
Originally Posted by gospeed81 View Post
The only helmet I every bought first time and never looked back was an Arai, and it wasn't cheap.
Yeah, for me (when I was DD'ing an SV650) the sweet spot was a Shoei RF-1000. I must have tried on every single helmet at Escondido Cycle Center, and that one just stood out above all the rest. It cost close to $500, but was well worth it as it fit perfectly, didn't move around without being too tight, was quiet, lightweight, and even with the visor up was ok on a bike with no windshield. During my most recent wreck about 3 years ago, it was destroyed. And based on how well it performed in the crash, I went right out and bought another one just like it.


ScottFW mentioned open face vs. closed face helmets. My AutoX helmet is an open-face, as I mentioned earlier, and for me this wasn't so much an issue of saving money as personal preference. When I first started out I used my motorcycle helmet, but after trying on an open model, I found that I much preferred it for in-car use. In a road race situation where use of the side-view mirrors is important, the difference would probably be even greater. (It's also much easier to get on and off if you have the top up or are running a hardtop.)

Obviously in an AutoX situation you're much less likely to actually need the helmet, so it's not a direct comparison. However in a Miata with the steering wheel in the stock location (and assuming a proper harness) I can't imagine a situation in which I'd be kissing the wheel without my neck having snapped first. Obviously there are situations where this would not be the case. Folks running in the Winston (I mean Nextel, or make that Sprint) Cup and similar stock-car series have the steering wheel pretty much right at their chest, so the risk here would be much greater.
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Old 05-13-2009, 03:25 PM   #23
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+1 Shoei makes a good helmet and they fit me well. Unfortunately I had to 'retire' that Shoei (highside crash in an endurance race). Like Joe I would probably feel OK wearing an open face in a car (never on a bike). The extra airflow would be nice. Closed-face helmets can get hot, even on a bike.

If you have a Cycle Gear in your town they have a good selection and decent prices. That way you will know what fits you well. That is indeed important as mentioned above.

If you want to go with an internet store, helmetharbor.com is a good vendor.
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Old 05-13-2009, 03:30 PM   #24
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Joe, I'm debating this as well.

I'm a huge proponent of closed face helmets...but that's influenced by time spent on (and going off of) motorcycles.

In a car -with harnesses- it seems to me you would want to have as little weight attached to your head as possible. Having chronic neck pain as it is this is a concern to me, and the likelihood of face meeting asphalt or other damaging parts seems slim compared to the likelihood of having your head jerked around a lot.

Visibility is always a bonus.
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Old 05-13-2009, 03:57 PM   #25
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Soloracer has the most info I can find anywhere on helmets. They have an xls file with weights, construction, features, etc.

One helmet you might look at is the Bell M4. It's a mid $300 helmet and has a huge eyeport. It's about the same weight and price as the Impact SS. Both of those look to be very good mid priced helmets.

Here's a list of solo's top sellers.

Our Top Selling Helmets
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Old 05-13-2009, 04:09 PM   #26
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All good points. An open helmet is not necessarily lighter than a closed helmet (owing to differences in materials and construction) for at any given price range, a given open helmet probably would be lighter than its closed counterpart.

Airflow is a huge part of it. On the bike, you've got a constant stream of air hitting you in the face at high-speed, so the relatively small vents on most helmets are entirely adequate. With a closed helmet in a car, even with the visor up, it gets stuffy. There's a reason that top-of-the-line models have a port on the side for forced-air cooling.

And yeah. In the car, assuming I'm wearing even my stock seatbelt and have the steering wheel within an inch or two of the stock position, I can't imagine any crash scenario in which I wouldn't already be dead long before my face hit the wheel. And yes, I understand that in a severe enough crash the wheel does tend to move towards the driver. But even without an airbag in between, I just can't imagine how my face would come within even 6" of the wheel without my brain stem having already come unattached from its mounting point.
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Old 05-13-2009, 04:28 PM   #27
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Those support collars that you put around your neck do a good job of taking the helmet weight off of your neck muscles. I don't have any fatigue at all after a two day HPDE, and my Bell M4 is not exactly a lightweight helmet. Those collars don't do anything to prevent injury in an impact, but for $20 they can save you a little pain in the neck (yuk yuk yuk).

One of the main issues for open vs closed-face, at least around here, is the deer factor. Deer do get onto VIR and Summit Point, and at least at Summit Point more than one car has hit a deer. I would post the video of that Mustang on the straight at Summit Main but it looks like it's been pulled from youtube. Hoofs (hooves?) have gone through windshields and into unprotected faces at 100+ mph. There are plenty of reasons (besides wildlife) why you never see professional drivers wearing open face helmets, and their cars are generally safer than ours to begin with. I prefer to minimize the risks to my finely chiseled mug.
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Old 05-13-2009, 04:29 PM   #28
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As if it matters, this is what I settled on for my brainbucket:

Bell Sport Helmet

- L
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Old 05-13-2009, 04:32 PM   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cueball1 View Post
One helmet you might look at is the Bell M4. It's a mid $300 helmet and has a huge eyeport.
+1 The big eyeport is one of the reasons I have an M4.
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Old 05-13-2009, 05:07 PM   #30
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"Zamp" sells open face SA2005 helmets for $150ish. A closed face Zamp should be $200-300.
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Old 05-13-2009, 05:23 PM   #31
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Efini~FC3S View Post
"Zamp" sells open face SA2005 helmets for $150ish. A closed face Zamp should be $200-300.
This one Zamp FSA-1 Helmet is $199. SA2005 and is marked as a "best buy" on their survey.

Bell M4 http://www.soloracer.com/bellm4.html is $368, or essentially the same money as the Impact Racing SS. Benefit of the Impact is it is locally available at Speedway for trial fit. I would have loved to be able to try one on.
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Old 06-19-2009, 07:19 PM   #32
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Today, I picked up a Bell K-1 in red. Fitment is excellent.
Attached Thumbnails
Looking for a helmet-k1_sport_silver_red.jpg  
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Old 06-19-2009, 07:50 PM   #33
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Just jumping in here. Scorpion Exo-700... i have 2. i was waring when i was hit on my bike, and 1 for the track. last i check they where the cheapest full face SA2000 helmet that was not crap.
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