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Old 07-17-2017, 10:20 AM   #1
jbh
 
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Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I ride a 1200 gs mostly long distance pavement riding with some weekend short jaunts too. I have a shoei RF 1200 I wear that is in good shape. It's very hot over 85 degrees. Also fairly noisy too (ok with earplugs). I also have a 3/4 hjc that I will occasionally wear without faceshield but with motorcycle glasses when hot and it is an amazing experience, love it for short distances. But helmet is old and does not fit my head right. I realize I am making a major compromise on safety of my face with that helmet.

Seems like a flip up would be nice compromise. Could ride with flipped up when really hot on short low speed rides but mostly ride with it down. The Shoei neotec fits me well.

So do you guys use the helmet like this in hot weather? Anyone go from modular back to full face? I know modular has some downsides too. My other option is but another 3/4 helmet but really don't like the safety compromise and not ideal on longer drives or highway trips. Would like that 3/4 experience sometimes but like the option to go back to full face in the fly.
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Old 07-17-2017, 10:57 AM   #2
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I've ridden with a modular for about 17 years. They are not designed to be ridden with the chinbar up. At speeds <25mph it is okay, but the wind drag gets to be too much at anything over 40mph. Even if your bike has a tall windscreen, the chinbar atop the helmet sticks way up in the airstream, putting a constant tug on your head.

That said, I do recall a design that swung the chinbar all the way around back. It looks a bit unconventional, but may work for your intended usage.

Don't forget your eye pro with chinbar away. Some helmets have the internal visor that can be flipped down, but not sure they can provide enough protection. It might work; I recall the internal visor on my SyMax 2 was also VESC rated, but may not fit close enough to protect from dust.
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Old 07-17-2017, 10:58 AM   #3
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I switched to a modular HJC last year and love it. I always said I would never get one becuase I thought they looked goofy. But man, it sure is nice to pop it open and enjoy the breeze without loosing all safety of the helmet. HJC makes some pretty affordable options that you could try out without investing too much. For me personally they are the only brand i've found that fits my round head correctly.
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Old 07-17-2017, 10:58 AM   #4
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I have had a few flip up helmets over the years. Two Shoeis, one HJC, and one Shark. The Shoeis were the highest quality and lasted the longest before troubles set in. At some point all of them developed problems with the latch mechanism. I really liked having the flip when I wanted to talk to someone, and trust that the ratings with the chin bar down are what is printed in the paperwork. The Shoeis went about five years before giving trouble, so rotating them out was pretty much on schedule. The HJC was junk, and the Shark failed in the closed position, while it was on my head. Removing the helmet while the chin bar was down was difficult and uncomfortable. I ended up removing some padding to be able to get it back on after lunch to complete the ride.

I will say that I ride dirt a lot and probably could have been better about maintaining the latch mechanisms. Might have extended their service life.
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Old 07-17-2017, 11:14 AM   #5
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

If been wearing shoei multitech for years , went 3 days without ear plugs before I realized I'd forgotten them when I switched from a Nolan flip front . I have crossed Texas several times in 100 + temps and a interesting discovery I noticed was it is much cooler inside with the face shield tightly closed . I like to ride with the shield open one notch but when real hot it feels like your riding into a blast furnace . All my helmets are white .
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Old 07-17-2017, 11:24 AM   #6
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I have a GT Air. Replaced my RF1000.

Yes, it gets hot with the shield down.
However, I noticed it's more radiant heat from the sun than ambient.

I bought a filtered shield that significantly reduced the radiant heat and its much more comfortable. Have to change at night, though.

I bought a face shield storage sock to store the shields.

My next helmet will have a sun shade like an X2.
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Old 07-17-2017, 11:34 AM   #7
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I use a modular and love it as well. Can confirm that tiding with the chin bar up isn't good past 40mph. Too much wind drag.

On mine, removing the chin bar and making it into a 3/4 helmet is a 10 second job. So if that's what OP wants, this is a great optiom to instantly go from full face to 3/4
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Old 07-17-2017, 12:31 PM   #8
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I would consider an adventure helmet. The chin peice is pushed forward allowing more air flow similar to a dirt bike helmet.

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Old 07-17-2017, 03:37 PM   #9
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

Thanks for all the replies. If having the flip open on the highway does not work due to wind drag, that's not good.
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Old 07-17-2017, 04:38 PM   #10
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I am surprised to hear this, I have an 1800 wing and use a modular helmet and I regularly ride at speeds in excess of 70mph with the chin bar up, have not noticed any wind issues? Maybe its the fairing on the wing that makes the difference? All i know is I love my modular helmet and would never go back to a fixed full face. I also like the built in sun glasses in my modular that flip up and down with a small lever. really convenient when you drive in and out of tunnels, can instantly raise/lower them without having to fight and remove sun glasses or open a tinted screen and risk getting something in my eye..

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Old 07-17-2017, 04:59 PM   #11
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I think it depends on the make and model. Technically, any manufacturer is going to tell you NOT to ride with the chin bar up; but from engine break-in to helmets (and all points in between), we all know how the silly CYA legal stuff goes in the motorcycle industry.

I've used modulars almost exclusively since the early 2000s and am currently wearing a 1Storm. It was $35 on Amazon and it does fine with the chin bar up at speeds below about 50. But above 55 or so, not recommended. It has dual visors, too, which is freakin' sweet:

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Old 07-17-2017, 07:10 PM   #12
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

About 3 weeks ago I bought a scorpion AT 950 which is a modular adventure style helmet with an internal tinted shield, regular clear shield with the modular section down and a motocross style visor which is great heading into the sun. I rode from San Antonio Texas to Durango CO and back (about 1950 miles and 30 some hours) over the the 4th of July week. Pretty much 95 to 101 degrees about 50 percent of the ride. Rode two hours on Sunday afternoon here in San Antonio and it was about 99 to 101 and humid all on a 1200GS. The helmet does pull on the head over 60 or so. A bit worse with the Bikes Windscreen in the lowest position. When I was moving at speed it was cool enough down and locked. Sometimes I would crack the primary shield a notch or leave it all the way up. I was pretty comfortable the entire trip. Pretty much concluded that riding over 95 degrees sucks anyway but the helmet performed well. What I really liked was when I would ride through a small town I would open the modular part and get lots of air. Back on the highway I would close it down. Have not worn a 3/4 helmet since the 70s as a kid so not sure how to compare.


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Old 07-17-2017, 08:03 PM   #13
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

My first helmet was a full face but everything since then has been a modular. I like the fact that I can flip the chin up and take a swig from my hydration pack without any issues.

Also, I can go into convenience stores with it flipped up and not scare the clerks who would otherwise only see a full face helmet.
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Old 07-17-2017, 09:35 PM   #14
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I've been wearing a Neotec for a few years. Except for just starting off, I have it closed. I ride with it year round. On a GSA and a K1600. Vents just fine for me.
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Old 07-17-2017, 10:35 PM   #15
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

Most comfortable option I've yet found for hot weather is full coverage MX style helmet and googles. I've cut about half the mud guard off because it catches too much wind at 70mph. Still plenty of shade. Ever ride through west Texas on a windy day? Sand in my eyes no matter what style helmet. Goggles are the cure. I have a matched pair, one with a clear lens, one tinted. Easy to make a quick stop and switch. I also have goggles with clear lenses for which I cut tinted tearoffs. Also a good way to go. The MX helmets are noisy but lots of air flow. An occasional bug works its way between helmet and goggles and gives a good whack to wake me up. Easy to hit a long necked bottle of water under the spacious chin piece.
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Old 07-17-2017, 11:22 PM   #16
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

Quote:
Originally Posted by KenH View Post
Most comfortable option I've yet found for hot weather is full coverage MX style helmet and googles. I've cut about half the mud guard off because it catches too much wind at 70mph. Still plenty of shade. Ever ride through west Texas on a windy day? Sand in my eyes no matter what style helmet. Goggles are the cure. I have a matched pair, one with a clear lens, one tinted. Easy to make a quick stop and switch. I also have goggles with clear lenses for which I cut tinted tearoffs. Also a good way to go. The MX helmets are noisy but lots of air flow. An occasional bug works its way between helmet and goggles and gives a good whack to wake me up. Easy to hit a long necked bottle of water under the spacious chin piece.
I would agree with you. I road for years with a mx helmet and goggles. Ear plugs did the truck for wind noise and I would generally wear a baklava on the highway.

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Old 07-18-2017, 01:25 AM   #17
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I've crash tested two HJC Sy-MAX III modular and both the chin bars stayed locked and in place. I now have a third SY-MAX III. I ride with the chin bar up to about 20 mph then down.
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Old 07-18-2017, 11:34 AM   #18
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jbh View Post
Thanks for all the replies. If having the flip open on the highway does not work due to wind drag, that's not good.
Like Tim Krietz said, it's probably particular to different brands & models. I have both a Shoei Multitek and a Nolan. The Nolan is a better fit, so it's my go-to helmet.

I can ride either one with the front flipped up, with no issues (the downside, of course, is that it affords less protection if the unthinkable happens right at that moment). A better option is to simply flip the face plate up. With the Shoei, that is no issue at all. The Nolan does fine with the face shield up, as long as I'm under about 50mph. Above that, it starts shimmering in the wind. Not actually a problem, since it's above eye level, but having that vibration just above my eyes is distracting and annoying.

All that said, I can't see myself ever going back to either a 3/4 or a full face. For my needs, a modular helmet is the best combination of convenience, noise masking, and protection in a single package.
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Old 07-18-2017, 08:20 PM   #19
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

Thanks for all the replies. I went to buy the neotec this morning and in the parking lot of freedom powersports in hurst were 2 st1300 police bikes with their police neotec helmets resting on the bike, perfect person to ask about the helmet. I talked to the police officer inside about the helmet, he liked it a lot. He said they went from 3/4 to modular and he likes it better.

Anyway the dealer has the helmets 35% off the retail price moving out some stock. They have rf1200's also at that discount too, fyi.

I got a white one, same color as my other helmets. I took a ride in the 96 degree weather this evening and like it so far. Its definitely better at airflow with the top vent producing a lot of air on my head, much better than the rf1200 top vents. The intergral sunshade was really nice and effective. I used the flip up feature at slow speeds and gas station and I can see how that is a huge advantage. The helmet seems roomier than the rf1200, fits my head great but more space in front of my face.

Only downside is the weight. Its definitely heavier than my rf1200. I will have to take a longer ride to see how that feels. Otherwise I like it a lot, especially for under $450 out the door.
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Old 07-18-2017, 10:09 PM   #20
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Re: Modular flip up helmets vs full face+3/4 helmet?

I did a face plant at ~25mph with my Scorpion AT950 on and it held up just fine. I tend to close the chin bar before I start moving due to wind resistance.
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