Wednesday, July 22, 2015

BILT Explorer Helmet

I have a Bilt Explorer Adventure Helmet that I picked up at Cycle Gear perhaps a year and a half ago. It has a visor and a drop down, internal sun shade. It fit well and the price of  $200 was pretty good for a low end, but DOT approved helmet. The Arai equivalent is over $600! Anyway, to continue the story, a day or two into my recent 15 state trip, the drop down sun shade in the BILT wouldn't lock down and I was without it for the remainder of the trip. Bummer, as I really like that feature.

So today I took the helmet apart to see if I could fix the drop down shade. The bad news is I can't fix it myself. The good news is that its fully warranted and Cycle Gear has always been good about fixing/replacing their products. I'll take it in tomorrow and turn it over. That will be that.

However, I had an interesting observation during the breakdown that I wanted to share. The helmet has two vents on top, two vents on the back and a vent in the chin guard. The vents directly on top with an open/close lever ... looks like this.

When I took the visor assembly and top off the helmet, this is what I found; a square indentation in the helmet shell, but no conduit to channel air to the inside the helmet. In other words, it's just a helmet shell and the top vent is fake.

We'll call that the "Vent to Nowhere!" I wonder how many times I opened/closed it thinking it was a real vent. LOL!

I guess the saying "you get what you paid for" applies here. I'm sure ALL the vents on that $600 Arai work perfectly. I do like the helmet, will get it fixed and will continue to wear it. However, I think I'll slip this observation in a review over on Cycle Gear's website so other potential buyers will know that the top vent is a fake.


Cycle Gear replaced the helmet on the spot, no questions.


The drop down shade has now similarly broke on the replacement helmet (10/2015), right in the beginning of a long road trip too.

Cycle Gear replaced it again. :)

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