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Motorcycle Helmets: Reviews
This section is all about helmets. Rider magazine reviews full-face, three-quarter and flip-up helmets on a regular basis. On occasion half-helmet styles from the editors of American Rider can also be found in this section.

AGV AX-8 Dual Evo Motorcycle Helmet Review

AGV AX-8 Dual Evo Helmet.

Greg Drevenstedt
November 5, 2013

In 1945, as Italy began rebuilding after World War II, a young accountant named Gino Amisano started making leather saddles and helmets for bicyclists in the town of Valenza. The fledgling company was called AGV (Amisano Gino Valenza), and Amisano made his first motorcycle helmet in 1947 by shaping leather... Read more »

Shoei RF-1200 Helmet Review

The Shoei RF-1200 comes in a wide variety of solid, metallic and graphic colors.

Mark Tuttle
October 15, 2013

Ever since the first Shoei RF-series full-face helmet was introduced in the mid-1980s, every time a new version is announced it’s a bit worrisome at first, since it seems unlikely that Shoei could possibly improve upon the current model. Almost without exception, however, sliding into each new one—RF-105V,... Read more »

Full-Face Helmets Buyers Guide 2013


Bill Stermer
July 3, 2013

Why a Full-Face Although wearing any helmet that is at least DOT approved is better than wearing none at all, here at Rider we prefer full-face helmets. A full-facer is one on which the chinbar is an integral part of the helmet rather than an add-on that can be pivoted upward, such as with a modular... Read more »

Shoei GT-Air Motorcycle Helmet Review

Shoei GT-Air Motorcycle Helmet

Greg Drevenstedt
June 4, 2013

When helmet manufacturers release new models or update existing ones, they often incorporate new features or adopt them from other helmets in their lineup. The GT-Air is an all-new full-face helmet from Shoei that combines new and existing features, and is priced between the top-of-the-line X-Twelve... Read more »

Arai Defiant Motorcycle Helmet Review

Arai Defiant Motorcycle Helmet

Greg Drevenstedt
May 30, 2013

The Gospel According to Arai: the prime objective of a helmet is impact energy management; everything else is secondary. Kinetic energy, the amount of work required to accelerate an object from rest to a particular velocity, increases at the square of speed. When speed doubles, say from 30 mph to 60... Read more »

Nolan N85 Motorcycle Helmet Review

Nolan N85 Motorcycle Helmet

Greg Drevenstedt
April 2, 2013

Italian helmet maker Nolan, along with sister brand X-Lite, gets high-profile, worldwide exposure on the heads of MotoGP and World Superbike racers such as Jorge Lorenzo and Marco Melandri. Here in the States, the company is best known for its flip-up helmets, such as the N104 introduced last year. After... Read more »

Bilt Explorer Motorcycle Helmet Review

Bilt Explorer Helmet

Greg Drevenstedt
March 8, 2013

Since it was founded in 1974, Cycle Gear has grown from a single store in the Bay Area to 98 retail stores in 31 states, and it claims to be America’s largest retailer of motorcycle apparel and accessories. Having carried other brands of apparel for years, in 2011 Cycle Gear launched two in-house brands:... Read more »

LS2 MX453 Dual-Sport Helmet


Greg Drevenstedt
February 28, 2013

Not familiar with LS2 helmets? Neither was I until two of them—the MX453 dual-sport and FT2 FF396 full-face models—showed up at the office late last year. The LS2 brand was launched in Europe in 2007 by MHR Helmet Co. Ltd., a subsidiary of Xiqing Plastics, a Chinese company that has been making helmets... Read more »

HJC RPHA Max Modular Motorcycle Helmet Review

HJC RPHA Max Modular Helmet

Clement Salvadori
December 5, 2012

I’ve sometimes found flip-up helmets a bit too noisy for my tender ears…although I do like the style and ease of communication with the chinbar flipped up. But when Editor Tuttle called up and said he had a genuinely new one from HJC that I might like, I told him to send it up. The box arrived,... Read more »

Bell RS-1 Motorcycle Helmet Review


Clement Salvadori
November 9, 2012

Three basic steps are involved in the testing of a helmet. The first thing I do is weigh it. Bell’s new RS-1 uses two shell sizes, one for XS-M and a slightly larger one for L-2XL. The size XL, which fit me, came in at an acceptable 58 ounces. In the smaller of its two shell sizes (XS-M), Bell says... Read more »

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