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Old 07-19-2013, 06:38 AM   #1
20Fingers OP
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Arai XD-4 Vibration (too soft peak)!

Chime in here if you are/have experienced vibration from the peak on your XD-4...I noticed this on a recent tour, mine vibrates to the point my vision is effected! This usually happens around 65-70(mph) depending on wind conditions.

YES (YES)-YES< the bolts are snug, nothing wrong with the peak, the helmet is under a year old!

IMHO -The plastic is too think on the leading edge causing it to flutter (vibrate) as highway speeds...holding it with my left hand stops it, but who the heck can ride for long like this?

I want to stay positive with this thread...I want Arai to know they can expect professional and respectful feedback on their product...the concept is that one gets more response with honey than vinegar! Keep the language and responses clean please!

I would like Arai to take some action on the design issue, not rebuke the claim because they see a their name bashed about on this discussion board!
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Old 07-19-2013, 06:43 AM   #2
El Gato
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My XD-3 had the same issue (fairly common from what I understand). Lots of suggestions in other threads here and elsewhere. I tried sticking on a couple of wheel weights (the flat, square stick-on ones) on the outer corners. This helped but didn't get rid of the problem entirely. I then put a layer of Dynamat (rubber sound-deadening meterial) on the underside and this solved the problem for me. The helmet still has a lot of buffeting at highway speeds compared to my Shoei GT Air, so I don't wear it all that often, but at least the vision-blurring resonation is now gone.
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Old 07-19-2013, 07:09 AM   #3
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I have an XD-4 and haven't felt this but I would hope that Arai would replace the peak with a stiffer plastic for those who have.
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Old 07-19-2013, 08:03 AM   #4
Backmarker
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It"s not a helmet problem but a windshield problem.... Stand on the pegs in clean air and the visor flutter will go away. In other words the windshield height on your bike is directing air in a bad way into the visor causing the problem. Fix the windshield and fix the problem. Nothing wrong with the helmet Mr Arai.
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Old 07-19-2013, 04:38 PM   #5
Artboy57
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I got mine 8 months ago and it roars on both my bikes, windshield and no windshield. I don't know if the plastic is different year to year? I don't have a roar from my crappy dirt bike helmet, visor is stiffer though. I stuff 2 rolled up Mechanix gloves under the Arai visor and it's quieter, but can't open the shield all the way. For my $500 bucks I shouldn't have to do anything.
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Old 07-19-2013, 10:29 PM   #6
mantel34
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20fingers... heck, I thought I was the only one with that problem. I spent quite a bit of time trying to solve it... and eventually did. I found the noise to be worse when wearing foam ear plugs.. sort of a low frequency vibration/sound equated to when you leave all four windows down in car... almost painful.

My experience: I agree that it's a "weak" peek issue and a poor design by Arai which could be easily fixed. Like you found, all you need to do to stop the noise is touch the front of the peek and it dampens all the vibration eliminating the noise.

After weeks of trial and error and chatting with some great guys on the Australian ADV forum who reported a similar problem, I eliminated all the vibration/noise by stiffening the peek relative to the helmet. I did this by bonding (5 minute epoxy) a 1/8 inch diameter piece of music wire all the way around the inside of the peek. It was easy enough to form the wire to fit nicely inside the peek. That made the peek stiff... and really helped, but what eliminated all the sound was by stiffening the peek relative to the helmet body. To do this, I just wedged two small pieces of wood between the trailing edge of the peek and helmet body, located just outward of the two vents. Now that I've got the sound sorted out, I need to come up with something that looks decent!

Really pisses me off that I had to do anything to such an expensive helmet... but.. wow.. I love the helmet now... fairly quiet with nice venting and I can wear it all day long in comfort. Also, it's so quiet now I can hear my Sena SMH10R while wearing foam ear plugs.

Like I said.. others may have a different experience than me?.. I tested the helmet on my 1200GS (stock windshield) and Vstrom1K.. initially, the same noise on each bike. My buddies similar style Shoei helmet did not have the same noise issue... I do not see this as an issue with that style of helmet, but rather an Arai peek design issue easily solved.

After all these years of lurking on this great site... hope I can finally post something that helps someone out.

Ken
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Old 07-20-2013, 08:06 AM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Backmarker View Post
It"s not a helmet problem but a windshield problem.... Stand on the pegs in clean air and the visor flutter will go away. In other words the windshield height on your bike is directing air in a bad way into the visor causing the problem. Fix the windshield and fix the problem. Nothing wrong with the helmet Mr Arai.
This is correct. I get no buffeting on mine unless I lower the windshield. When I stand up on the highway, I get no buffeting either.
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Old 07-20-2013, 08:29 AM   #8
Xeraux
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Backmarker View Post
It"s not a helmet problem but a windshield problem.... Stand on the pegs in clean air and the visor flutter will go away. In other words the windshield height on your bike is directing air in a bad way into the visor causing the problem. Fix the windshield and fix the problem. Nothing wrong with the helmet Mr Arai.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hikertrash View Post
This is correct. I get no buffeting on mine unless I lower the windshield. When I stand up on the highway, I get no buffeting either.


Yep. When I set my windshield in the fully-back position, I get no buffeting or peak vibration at all.
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Old 07-20-2013, 10:57 AM   #9
longtallsally
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+1 more for what Backmarker said. It can be a bit finicky. I recently went somewhere on my GSA that I was worried about the little Touratech wing shield thingy I have on the top of the OEM winscreen of the GSA getting stolen, so I took it off.

I got some pretty bad buffeting at freeway speeds with the windscreen all the way up. A couple days later I put it back on and rode in VERY high winds and no buffeting whatsoever.

This is not the lid, it's how the wind is getting to it.
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Old 07-20-2013, 02:25 PM   #10
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Thanks for the replies and ideas!

I have to agree with the buffeting problem being from indirect and direct wind off the shield. However, this should not be an issue with the peak...meaning, a few mm's thicker on the leading edge would stop the buffeting, which is a fluttering effect of the leading edge of the peak in certain conditions. The peak is very soft and designed to fold or break off in a crash for safety reasons, a stiffer peak might be counter intuitive to this aspect of the overall design.

For those of us riding around trying to figure it out, PLEASE do not stand on your pegs at high speeds to see if the problem is directly related to your windshield height...the suggestion to do so was not appropriate or a safe suggestion!

Testing at lower speeds is counter to what I posted about, and NO it does not flutter or vibrate at all below 60MPG unless in very windy conditions.

I LOVE the use of dynamat suggestion, did it right away and it works great...although I blacked out the metal with a marker because I was nearly blinded by the sun reflecting off of my instruments onto the dynamat and into my line of vision...fortunately I was on a side road with no traffic.

Bottom line, I LOVE Arai and have used their helmets for years...they need to address this issue when they design an XD-5, also an aftermarket peak could be sold to those of us who are having an issue.

YES, on the comment about resonance through the helmet. The Aria shells are hand-laid up fiberglass and they are very tight...meaning, any vibration is amplified through it! If you take a cheap helmet and tap your fingernail on the outer skin, you get a dull thud, with Ara its a nice tap like a glass plate! Experiencing the buzz generated by the fluttering peak is very very noisy and over a long period of time, its bad!

Thanks for the posts, comments are welcome, it's why we share our ideas in here. However, in the interest of problem solving and not creating more...please keep posts short and oriented to the problem of the XD-4's soft peak issue. IT's soft, no question about it and it flexes-flutters at speed causing the wearer to hear a buzz or hum inside the helmet. IF you are not experiencing this, you need not comment on anything at all...its not your problem, its ours, so leave us to our task of figuring out a good short term solution while we seek a long term one with the Arai designers...and who knows, you might find yourself being offered a new classy peak for a great helmet, in the near future!
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Old 07-20-2013, 03:00 PM   #11
Xeraux
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 20Fingers View Post
Thanks for the posts, comments are welcome, it's why we share our ideas in here. However, in the interest of problem solving and not creating more...please keep posts short and oriented to the problem of the XD-4's soft peak issue. IT's soft, no question about it and it flexes-flutters at speed causing the wearer to hear a buzz or hum inside the helmet. IF you are not experiencing this, you need not comment on anything at all...its not your problem, its ours, so leave us to our task of figuring out a good short term solution while we seek a long term one with the Arai designers...and who knows, you might find yourself being offered a new classy peak for a great helmet, in the near future!


Best of luck with that.


The issue with the "peak" has been discussed since the introduction of the XD series of helmets back in 2006 and it pretty much remains the same with each iteration of the helmet. I've had each since Gen 1 and am currently using an XD3. I'm pretty sure that if Arai felt there was a big problem with the peak, they would have addressed it by now. There's probably a reason it's the way it is. One of the reasons that they persist in using the soft, plastic screws to attach the peak to the helmet is because the Country of Australia requires it for the XD to be sold there. They want the peak to rip off easily instead of snapping the rider's head back in case something like a branch or wire were to grab it. The peak's continued pliability may be related to something like that.

We are offering a solution because we don't have a problem with the peak. The culprit is the dirty air coming off of your windscreen. Fix that, and you fix the vibration. There are a variety of ways to do that. On my 12GS with the Adventure windscreen, I just lay the windscreen in the fully-back position and there's no vibration. On my F650GS with the Wunderlich screen, the solution was the Wunderlich Screen extension which smoothed out the air coming off the top of the screen. Again, no more buffeting.
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Xeraux screwed with this post 07-20-2013 at 03:10 PM
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Old 07-20-2013, 03:42 PM   #12
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Agree, and I am an optimist!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Xeraux View Post


Best of luck with that.


The issue with the "peak" has been discussed since the introduction of the XD series of helmets back in 2006 and it pretty much remains the same with each iteration of the helmet. I've had each since Gen 1 and am currently using an XD3. I'm pretty sure that if Arai felt there was a big problem with the peak, they would have addressed it by now. There's probably a reason it's the way it is. One of the reasons that they persist in using the soft, plastic screws to attach the peak to the helmet is because the Country of Australia requires it for the XD to be sold there. They want the peak to rip off easily instead of snapping the rider's head back in case something like a branch or wire were to grab it. The peak's continued pliability may be related to something like that.

We are offering a solution because we don't have a problem with the peak. The culprit is the dirty air coming off of your windscreen. Fix that, and you fix the vibration. There are a variety of ways to do that. On my 12GS with the Adventure windscreen, I just lay the windscreen in the fully-back position and there's no vibration. On my F650GS with the Wunderlich screen, the solution was the Wunderlich Screen extension which smoothed out the air coming off the top of the screen. Again, no more buffeting.
Dang straight, I have fixed mine with Dynamat! Also, you (and others) left out rider height-to-windscreen issues etc. I have the F650 with the same Wunderlich extension and adjustment to direct flow, but its not quite there, still getting the buffeting; need a stretching rack for gain an inch, or cut out a chunk of my seat!

What I know is that through discussions boards, social media, and media technologies, we can put more pressure on a company to address an issue. I am an optimist, always will be to...so, pursuing Arai for a breakthrough change in their peaks is going to be on my agenda...as long as they keep making fantastic helmets!

Also, if all else fails, someone in the aftermarket area might take an interest in creating a carbon peak, which would be pricy, but KILLER fix...hmm, a client of mine builds carbon parts for F-1 cars, maybe he'd be interested in a little side project...but, back to Arai, they should pay attention more in a world that social media has taken over! Time for a Twitter approach...I think!

Thanks for the , I love sarcasm and humor to!
Peace!
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Old 07-21-2013, 08:34 AM   #13
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I think some of the roar may be wind rushing thru the gap at the rear of the visor. They may build them flimsy so they will snap off in an accident or if caught on something rather than snapping off your head.
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Old 07-21-2013, 09:58 AM   #14
trc.rhubarb
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Mine vibrates if I get the right vehicle in front of me or occasionally on very strong side winds. Not really much more than any other helmet vibrates under the right conditions though.

I have no isses most of the time or when standing on the pegs at high speeds though Not sure why this is considered dangerous, sometimes you need to stretch or get some air-conditioning in the seat area.
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Old 07-21-2013, 09:34 PM   #15
Snarky
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I've had my XD-4 for a long while, I think since the month they came out actually, Aprilish 2012. Been through about 20,000 miles the past year, in it at speeds both high and slow. I wear it almost single every day at some point. I have a stock windscreen (admittedly on a bike with a big stock one) and never really had an issue with the peak. I used it on the old Versys once across Texas with a tiny screen, still didn't have problems with it. Storms, 80 mph highways, windy days, pretty much the last thing on my mind is any peak flutter from the Arai. I don't even think I've ever paid attention to it while riding, though I usually have other shit to worry about.

However, if you find it's a big issue, I would like to add that Arai made the peak removable and gave you extra side plates for the helmet for that purpose. The XD-4 is a great helmet with or without the peak. I know Icon isn't in the same league as Arai, but my Variant does not have this feature, and it's way worse with peak issues (I.E. I notice them)

You could also try adjusting the peak downwards. I keep mine set to the lowest setting possible to allow my to open my shield without contacting the peak. I think a downward angle helps keeping wind lifting up on it and may avoid any wind vibration.

Likely the main problem is trying to operate a motorcycle in a dual sport helmet at high speeds without adequate windshield blockage. Just take the peak off and put it in a bag if you're not offroad. It's a quick swap on and off.
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