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Helmet Makes and Models

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  • Helmet Makes and Models

    OK, now that everyone is talking about the need to wear a helmet, can we discuss different styles, certifications, pricing, etc.?

    I have been using a Tipperary Sportage for quite a few years, but I have dropped it a few times and am starting to think I should probably replace it. I don't show, so don't need a "fancy" helmet, but I do want something well made and with a good reputation.

    A lot of folks seem to like the Charles Owen helmets, but from the photos, they don't appear to have air vents. If this is correct, the COs are probably not a good choice for riders in the hot, humid south.

    Does anyone have the IRH Elite Extreme? Dover lists it for $169.90.

    What about the GPA SpeedAir? It is incredibly expensive (Dover has it listed for $549.90), but that is cheaper than one day in an ICU.

    Is it a fair assumption that the higher priced models are "safer" due to better construction? Also, I am gathering that ASTM F-1163-04a/SEI is the highest level of safety certification for riding helmets. Is this correct?

  • #2
    The speed air is discontinued and is being replaced by the evolution. The evolution will be available in a month or so (I just ordered one). They are EXPENSIVE, but they look like the most ventilation and the liner is removable washable and replaceable and at least after spending that much I'll be wearig it

    Comment


    • #3
      You are correct re: the certification. Expensive helmets are not safer. They are all tested to the same standard. A few private groups have made attempts to compare them, and results have not been correlated to price. I believe they are all too old to have tested the most current models, but I remember the $30 plastic Troxel doing very well in one.

      The most important thing is that your helmet fits well, without any extra padding shoved in, and its comfortable enough that you put it on every time.

      I ride in a Tipperary 8500 most of the time, but also have a GPA Speed Air and a Charles Owen JR8 (for show). I'm considering a Charles Owen Hampton for showing this year.

      Comment


      • #4
        Just posted this in another thread...

        ...but thought I should spread the message about this awesome super lightweight good-looking helmet:

        I ride in a Uvex Uvision helmet which I love. I do endurance so it's on my head for a long long time and I don't even notice it (unless the occasional branch scratches it )

        People ask me about it all the time. It is super lightweight with excellent ventilation (for all the people on other threads who say they can't possibly wear helmets because it's too hot where they live and they have to ride too many horses a day...) and you can take out the little forehead cushion and wash it. It comes with dial system and fits me really well.

        I got mine in Germany for 99 Euros and am not sure if they have an American distributor yet. Uvex is known for their line of wintersport and bike helmets and obviously all products are tested and comply with European standards.
        http://www.uvex-sports.de/index.php?id=172&L=0

        Comment


        • #5
          They're cool looking, but may not be available here if they're not ASTM certified...
          "Adulthood? You're playing with ponies. That is, like, every 9 year old girl's dream. Adulthood?? You're rocking the HELL out of grade 6, girl."

          Comment

          • Original Poster

            #6
            Originally posted by caddym View Post
            The speed air is discontinued and is being replaced by the evolution. The evolution will be available in a month or so (I just ordered one). They are EXPENSIVE, but they look like the most ventilation and the liner is removable washable and replaceable and at least after spending that much I'll be wearig it
            Interesting - I have seen the Evolution advertised as the "GPA Speed Air Evolution".

            I guess my head is worth $550, but I am not sure I understand why the SpeedAir/Evolution models are SO much more expensive than other models. Are they made out of moon rocks?

            Comment


            • #7
              I have the IRH elite, and love it - very comfortable (but may not be if you don't have the correct head shape; my daughter does NOT love it - she loves her troxel). She has the Troxel Legacy and loves it, while I hate that one. I also have the CO JR8 for showing and LOVE it, but you're right, it's not vented and that sucker can get hot. It's not as hot as you'd think, but in the middle of summer I can't wear it.

              Edit: Oh, and I got my daughter the Troxel because it fits her the best, and it has a very good safety rating. Even though I hate the "speed dial" thing, if it fits correctly, it's safer. I like the Tipperary myself, and I think I'm going to get her one of those for schooling. I like having multiple helmets myself, and want to encourage her to have that as well.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by DownYonder View Post
                Interesting - I have seen the Evolution advertised as the "GPA Speed Air Evolution".

                I guess my head is worth $550, but I am not sure I understand why the SpeedAir/Evolution models are SO much more expensive than other models. Are they made out of moon rocks?
                Yea, same helemt. They are advertised and featured in the Dover catalogue, but not yet actually available.

                If I have heard this correctly, when the GPA's first came out, they were expensive as they had some new -technology, manufacturing technics and/or materials. They then caught on and are now probably expensive because people like me will buy them

                Comment


                • #9
                  I know I'm a bit behind the power curve in replying here, but I am in Colorado so it gets somewhat toasty here but isn't crazy hot and humid, so a temperature reference.

                  I have ridden in a lot of helmets as I jump in addition to dressage so I relatively religiously replace my helmet every two to three years. I am not a fan of any helmet with dial fit. The reson why is every helmet I have used or seen with dial fit, even if carefully handled, the dial or the plastic holding the dial in, will give out. It is unfortunate as they are great helmets otherwise. That being said, for kids or riders who may not eb jumping or doing intense stuff I feel they are good as long as you watch that part for issues but really keeping a close eye on your helmet is a good idea anyway I suppose.

                  Personally, I love my Charles Owen GR8. It may not be vented per se, but it has a coolmax lining and I really do forget I am even wearing it. It is the most comfortable helmet I have ever had.

                  I highly suggest trying on a bunch of different helmets at a tack store though and seeing what fits your head best though as head shape determines very much which helmets will fit you best. I literally felt like I was wearing abrick when I tried on a few GPAs- they were entirely the wrong shape for my head. I wished very much they would fit, since I like them very much, but they don't fit. So... I guess my .02 is see what fits you and go with that
                  My blog:

                  RAWR

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    My Troxel fits me, I wear it. I don't show so I don't need a helmet that announces how much money I can drop on a helmet. My criteria are ASTM certification and fit, in that order.
                    Originally posted by HuntrJumpr
                    No matter what level of showing you're doing, you are required to have pants on.

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      I have the IRH Elite and I do like it. I bought it because in Texas the air vents are much better for summer riding! I did prefer the Charles Owen Ayr8 - it had more padding inside and was comfier. I loved my older Charles Owen without vents, but it got too hot in the summer.

                      The IRH is comfy and i Have been pleased with how much cooler it is in the summer. The plasticy cover cleans off easily, but I was very disappointed a few weeks ago when I dropped my helmet on the ground - not cement, the ground - and the visor cracked. The visor is not a safety issue, so I am not returning the helmet. But it is really annoying that something would crack so easily.
                      My blog: Journeys in Riding

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        I was literally tossed through the air, my feet above my horse's back, and landed right on my shoulder and side/back of my head. I guess I hit the ground so hard people could hear it loudly standing on the other side of the barn.

                        I was wearing a Tipperary helmet. I blacked out for a second and saw stars, but stood right up and had a very mild concussion.

                        I always ride in a Tipperary every day, and because of the price I replace my helmet every year. I think that is way better protection than buying an expensive helmet (that doesn't protect any better) and wearing it for years and years...
                        On the Internet, nobody knows you're a dog

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          I wear an IRH helmet--it's very comfortable, but a pain in the butt to clean and it drives me insane that it doesn't have a ponytail port. In the summer I can deal with this, but in the winter, when I have extra stuff, like ear coverings, the dang helmet slips over my eyes in front.

                          You'd think, with the majority of riders being women, they could put in a ponytail port--just a little hole in the back!! I must say it's the most comfortable helmet I've ever worn though.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            I have a Charles Owen AYR8 and it has air vents all up the front. You can see them in this photo: http://www.crowstonstack.co.uk/activ...-Owen-Ayr8.jpg

                            The one in the photo is the black/silver model. Mine is black/black so the vents aren't as obvious.

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              I have the IRH Extreme (not Elite, IIRC). It is comfortable, fits my oval head well and feels secure. It feels more secure on my head than the older Tipperary did (the older ones didn't come down as far in back), but less vented.

                              You can get GPA's from non-US companies and they will be less expensive, tho not officially approved in the US. AmiraUK is one example.

                              There is a Charles owen that is similar to the AYR8, but with the harness made from a different material. It has a J in its name and is less expensive. A barn mate has both this one for schooling and the AYR8 for shows and says they are the same.

                              It is very helpful to go to a tack store and actually try on a few to figure out what types and brands fit better. Some people have round-ish head, while other heads are more oval. A GPA on my oval head made it feel like there was a vice grip on my forehead. If large enuf to avoid that I literally had gaps along the sides.
                              The Evil Chem Prof

                              Comment


                              • #16
                                I have a CO Hampton, and I really like it. It fits well, and I don't notice it getting that hot in the summer.

                                Caitlin
                                Caitlin
                                *OMGiH I Loff my Mare* and *My Saddlebred Can Do Anything Your Horse Can Do*
                                http://community.webshots.com/user/redmare01

                                Comment


                                • #17
                                  Originally posted by caddym View Post
                                  The speed air is discontinued and is being replaced by the evolution. The evolution will be available in a month or so (I just ordered one). They are EXPENSIVE, but they look like the most ventilation and the liner is removable washable and replaceable and at least after spending that much I'll be wearig it
                                  love that logic- I have also now embarked on the helmet life and acquired a nice - well fitting type - that looks halfway ok and feels like it's not injuring my brain just for wearing it but also stays on in the rather rambunctious canter of my horse...I'd love to have a more ventilated style though for summer- as our summers get very hot and I am not inclined to abandon the 'helmet' life....I am gonna be good !!! (feels like I am on a diet...but necessary!!)
                                  "the man mite be the head but the woman is the neck and the neck can turn the head any way she wants..." -smart greek woman

                                  Comment


                                  • #18
                                    Honestly, I didn't start riding with a helmet until my barn owner decided to start enforcing her helmet rule, but I think I will continue to wear a helmet even after I leave this barn. Anyway, I have an IRH Windsor that I used to be my show helmet until now. It is practically identical to the CO Hampton, but only $99. It is low profile and very classy looking. Even though it is velvet, I think it is pretty cool during the summer. Not to mention it was was of the only helmets that would fit my monsterous head.

                                    Comment


                                    • #19
                                      I've had so many different,expensive helmets....just sold my GR8.I keep coming back to the Tipperary.It's the only helmet that comes low on the back of my head and protects the occipital bones,It's very comfy and cool.I feel totaly comfy and protected in it.It's not a show helmet as far as looks.

                                      Comment


                                      • #20
                                        I just bought a Charles Owen Wellington Classic. I can't afford one for schooling and one for competition so I bought this one. It is low profile and velvet. A truly beautiful helmet. My young horse is 3 this year and I wanted something that was attractive enough to wear in recognized competitions (maybe later this year, if she steers well enough at that point to stay in the arena ). It is so comfortable that I have my horse untacked after a ride and still have it on because I forgot I was still wearing it. Love it! It was pricey ($239.00), but came with a really nice hat case. I was never comfortable in my Troxel. Just my personal preference.

                                        Comment

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