Recently I decided it was about time I invested in a "really good" helmet ie one that costs more than $150-. So I started searching online for a helmet that would give me as much protection as I could afford and have the look I was after. My list of requirements were as follows: Price of about $500/$600, Light weight, good ventilation due to how hot it gets here in Perth over summer, comfortable, cool looks and easy to maintain and clean.
Once I started looking I found that there were plenty of reviews available online. I was after good comparison tests with some serious experiments like dropping one off a tall building or driving over it with a truck...the sort of tests that really prove a helmets strength. I noticed that helmet decal designs were a bit dated (early ninties) with lots of tribal patterns and bad air brushed designs so I had to look at a lot of models before I found one with the look and the test results I wanted. After a few days of searching and reading I decided that a Shoei helmet would be the way to go, in particular the RF-1000 Badge. It was packed with features, always passed the crazy hard core testing (like hammering it with a pneumatic spike) and looked freakin cool...not exactly a Cafe Racer style helmet but I don't like the idea of shearing my face off on the road while wearing an open faced lid.
I headed out to the local motorcycle dealers to get an idea of the price and find the right size. The helmet looked even better in the flesh and the small one fit my melon like a glove (a melon glove?), the cheek pads made me pout a bit but I knew they would ease up after a week or 2. Unfortunately the price was a bit on the steep side, $750 to be exact and I really was going to have to dig deep to cover that. A little disappointed I went home to restart my search and by chance I decided to have a look on Ebay for a secondhand one. To my joy I discovered a seller who had brand new helmets on offer for about $300 USD! Combined with the $60 shipping charges I figured out the total would be about $500 AUD so I contacted the powerseller (Zippyflea) and made the purchase. He was awesome and if you are after a helmet he has heaps on offer. He was even kind enough to write 'gift' on the box so I didn't have to pay a cent in import taxes.
The RF 1000 Badge has a great matte black rubber finish that doesn't seem to be that prone to scratches, the pattern is simply cool and combined with my iridium visor makes me look like something from the wraith (for those of you who haven't seen the wraith go get it!). It also has a removable nose guard to reduce fogging in winter and a removable chin guard for reducing internal draft. The chin pads are removable for cleaning and there are 4 well placed ports for ventilation, 1 in the front lip, 2 on the forehead and 1 at the back. It features Shoei's quick release visor so you can swap visors in seconds once the sun goes down and it weighs only 1.4kgs (3.24lbs) so you hardly even notice when it's on. All up I'm extremely happy with the helmet and all my mates love it...not that that really matters...but they do all think it's really cool.
Keep in mind if you're buying a helmet from overseas that your country will have a regulation safety standard on helmets so make sure the helmet you buy is approved and locally available, otherwise your new purchase could become a very expensive door stop.
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