Bilt Adventure Helmet Report

Discussion in 'Equipment' started by G19Tony, Sep 29, 2012.

  1. brailman133

    brailman133 Adventurer

    Joined:
    Nov 21, 2012
    Oddometer:
    46
    That's good news... Yes I will wait for a specific one in tint.


    Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
  2. Bazgab

    Bazgab Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Sep 4, 2012
    Oddometer:
    223
    Location:
    Raleigh, NC
    Tried one on when I stopped in at a local CG. Like the look of it and for the price it seems to have pretty sold construction. Fit and finish seemed a step above the other Bilt offerings.

    But now the bad...
    -Fit is very strange. I have a 60cm head, can fit in large in some helmets and XL in others, but usually wear a L. Put on an XL for the Bilt as I didn't see a Large on the rack and it went on but was extremely tight in the front and back of the head. I figure this is due to the helmet shape, which seems to me to be a very round internal shape. This doesn't jive with my intermediate oval/slightly narrow head.

    -What is up with the drop down visor mechanism? I don't like it at all, seems like it would be prone to breaking.

    -Opening and closing the visor is a chore as there is very little to hold onto. Would be difficult to operate with anything but really thin gloves.

    It would still be a tempting budget helmet for me if it actually fit my head correctly.
  3. BaileyAZ

    BaileyAZ Adventurer

    Joined:
    Sep 29, 2010
    Oddometer:
    28
    Location:
    Sun City, Arizon
    I bought the Explorer ($69) yesterday in Matte Black size large. The fit was good for me. I took my bike out for a ride today and really enjoyed having the shield instead of goggles on the road. I also did some off road and the distortion from the shield was a little too much for my liking. I will bring goggles the next time I plan on taking the bike off road. The wind noise was cut down compared to wearing MX helmet and goggles, but still fairly noisy at 65 mph. All in all, so far I like the helmet especially for the price. On a side note, in another post I did say the I would not purchase this helmet...but here we are!
  4. LexTalionis

    LexTalionis Inciteful

    Joined:
    Nov 3, 2008
    Oddometer:
    452
    Location:
    San Jose, CA
    I purchased one of these helmets, good value for the money. However, got home, took off the sticker on the flip-down shield, and found too much optical distortion just off the right of center. Took the helmet back, asked the cashier if all the visors were defective or if I should try to find one on another helmet that was OK. Cashier said they are ALL optically defective!

    Too bad, I liked the helmet otherwise.

    Lex
  5. G19Tony

    G19Tony Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    Oddometer:
    418
    Location:
    KLAS
    That's odd. I bought one when they first came out and it's optically very good.
  6. KG6BWS

    KG6BWS Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    895
    Location:
    Canyon Country, Ca
    Mine isnt. Horrible distortion. I just live with it because of the price.
  7. n1tr0

    n1tr0 Dual Sport rider

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2012
    Oddometer:
    130
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    I did pretty much the same. I love the concept. the helmet looks great and the flip down sun shield is the perfect addition for a dual sport helmet.

    I normally wear a L, but had to go up to a 2XL and it still fit a bit tight front to back. Add to that the horrible distortion with the internal shades and that they stopped half way in my field of vision.

    I ended up ordering the speed and strength SS2500. It's pretty much the same helmet with a better fit and the shell is a composite vs. plastic. I'm also a big fan of the "speed strap" (velcro and ratchet) after having a similar strap on my AFX FX-39DS.

    Hopefully other brands will bring us a higher quality, better fitting, version of the Adventure helmet, like the Nolan X-lite 551 (unfortunately it's not for sale in the US).
  8. lucas123

    lucas123 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2008
    Oddometer:
    460
    Location:
    Ohio
    Is there any optical distortion in the clear visor of this helmet?

    The Explorer, not the Discovery.
  9. n1tr0

    n1tr0 Dual Sport rider

    Joined:
    Jun 14, 2012
    Oddometer:
    130
    Location:
    Pacific Northwest
    Has anyone found a chin curtain, chin skirt, that can be made to work with this helmet ?
  10. KG6BWS

    KG6BWS Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 12, 2010
    Oddometer:
    895
    Location:
    Canyon Country, Ca
    THats the helmet I have. I didnt get the one with the sun shade. Like the helmet, hate the shield.
  11. smeghead

    smeghead b00b

    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2006
    Oddometer:
    146
    Location:
    Portland, OR
    I went in over the weekend to check out the helmet and ended up paying $359 for the combo deal - helmet, jacket, pants and gloves. The explorer gloves suck but the rest of the gear is shockingly good quality. This is the second set of Bilt gloves I have purchased and I wouldn't have gotten these if they weren't free. Same problem as last pair - the knuckle guard end up on the upper part of your hand instead of over the knuckles.

    The explorer helmet (the one with the interior shades) does have distortion in the clear visor. For me is detectable but not annoyingly noticeable. Off road I'll be wearing goggles.

    The pants and jacket are very high quality. I didn't *really* need a new 3/4 jacket and pants but the value for the price was too good to pass up. Not to mention 5 year warranty on everything.
  12. lucas123

    lucas123 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2008
    Oddometer:
    460
    Location:
    Ohio
  13. BigChris99

    BigChris99 Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Jul 11, 2007
    Oddometer:
    274
    Location:
    In 5th gear... looking for 6th
    I like the looks of the Hi-Viz with the black. Sharp looking helmet. They had them on sale at Christmas for 99.00 dollars. If, and when they come back down, I'll grab one. Too pricey for me right now.
  14. nedar

    nedar n00b

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2013
    Oddometer:
    4
    They are back down to $99. I believe the sale starts today or tomorrow.
  15. Prime Mover

    Prime Mover Anything Can Happen

    Joined:
    Nov 24, 2011
    Oddometer:
    1,351
    Location:
    NorEast Ohio
    Yep, these are back down to $99.99 with no tax or shipping added. Sweet deal. I just ordered one from Renee at Cycle Gear, she was great on the phone and said if it did not fit that I could return it within 7 days using their prepaid return shipping. Now THAT is a deal.
  16. G19Tony

    G19Tony Been here awhile

    Joined:
    Oct 14, 2011
    Oddometer:
    418
    Location:
    KLAS
    I like the hi viz, I'll have to go check it out tomorrow. :freaky
  17. BlueLghtning

    BlueLghtning Riding is my passion

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    5,533
    Location:
    Newnan, GA
    So my wife and I went to check out these today and yes they are on sale for $69 for the Discovery and $99 for the Explorer. They had both the Explorer and the Discovery helmets at our local CG, although a lot more choice in the Discovery model. In fact, I had to ask where the Explorer ones were and they had them hid in a corner in the back of the store. :huh

    Anyway, I started with the Discovery model and was immediately impressed how good it felt on my head. I was in between the XL & L, but in the end decided the L would fit better once broken in. The smallest size they had was a S for my wife and it was too big for her.

    Then we went back to the Explorer models. I really like the sun visor, but right away when I tried on the Explorer, it felt like my ears were getting stuck in between the two different pads near the ear. I didn't have that issue with the Discovery. The L was way too tight, so tried on the XL, but was still tight and giving me pressure points right above and behind my ears. I was kind of bummed because it just wasn't as comfy as the Discovery. Once again, the SM was too big for my wife. She was bummed. No XS in stock.

    Back to the Discovery model and kept trying on the L and it just fit and felt good. I was ready to purchase and was up at the cash register and my wife mentioned about the optical distortion. I took off the visor thing and there it was. There is a very noticeable optical distortion just off center on either side and I knew there was no way I could live with that. I went and looked at a few others and each one was the same. No deal :(

    I went back to the Explorer model seeing if I could figure out something with my ears and just for grins seeing if they had an XXL model. I've never worn an XXL model in any helmet, but the way the XL was creating pressure points, maybe I needed to. The XXL fit better and the more I wore it, the more it seemed I could get along, but I still wasn't sure. We went next door for lunch to think it over and came back and I killed some more time trying on the Explorer and wearing it around the store. In the end, I decided that the fit of the Bilt Explorer was better than my MSR one (AFX-39 clone) and I really liked the sun visor so I was going to give it a shot.

    I haven't worn it on the bike yet, but we'll see.

    If it wasn't for the visual distortion of the Discovery shield, I would have left with one of those in a heart beat. That helmet felt so much better even though its the "cheaper" version. I would have missed the sun visor, but the fit just was awesome. Such a shame about the optical distortion in that one.

    I was really surprised that the two helmets are so different too. Their fit and internal shape is so different. I have a very oval head and I would almost venture to say the Discovery is the more oval shape and the Explorer has a more round shape. To my head, the Discovery was just so much more comfy. Obviously they aren't sized the same since I fit a L in the Discovery, but an XXL in the Explorer. The shields are different and where they sit. The Discovery shield only has 3 positions. Closed, middle, & full open. The middle position has some play so it can sit just above your eye line. Even in full open, the shield is still pretty visible in your FOV. Overall, the shield on the Discovery isn't as nice as the Explorer and of course the Discovery shield has the optical distortion in it. The Explorer helmet only has 2 true notches; full closed & full Open, but there feels like there is enough resistance in the shield that you could put it anywhere and it would stay? Not sure if that will last though through extended use? The Explorer shield also opens up further to almost be completely out of view. The front chin vent for the explorer is inside the helmet and reachable by your thumb. The Explorer has the sun visor which to me sits a little high, but we'll see how it works in the real world use. There might be some optical distortion in the sun shade on the Explorer, but it certainly wasn't as bad as the Discovery shield was.

    For $100, the Explorer doesn't seem bad, but it certainly isn't a $200 helmet though. For $69, the Discovery would be a steal if it wasn't for that stupid shield.
  18. TH

    TH There and Here

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2007
    Oddometer:
    912
    Location:
    Northern VA
    I got the Jacket, Pants, gloves and helmet about a week ago when they had it on sale (good till March 6).

    The discovery helmet fit me shockingly well. I was totally impressed with how well it fit my head. I've been wearing an Arai Profile, and the discovery seemed just a tiny tadge bit rounder than the the Profile.

    I wore it on a extended ride the other day and my thoughts (on a bike with a windscreen setup).

    • Fit well - no hotspots for me.
    • Internal built in flip down shade, worked better than I thought it would. I thought it was too light, but it worked well enough.
    • Main face shield is nice and thick. It gave a good view, didn't notice any annoying distortions, unless you looked out the very bottom of the shield where it curves to fit the helmet.
    • Ventilation - Does not appear to be real good. I'll have to try with the windshield lowered. My Arai has better ventilation.
    • Aerodynamics - No complaints. Didn't really seem to have any additional buffeting, worked well, even when I looked sideways.
    • Fogging - It was a cool day, it didn't fog up any worse than my Arai. As long as I lifted the visor at stops, it was fine. Once I was moving, if there was any fogging, it cleared up quickly.
    • Overall quality looked good, expecially for a $100 helmet. All the padding comes out so it can be washed.
    If it holds up for a few years, it will definitely be worth the money. If it falls apart in a year or two, then I'll get frustrated with it.

    I go the Pearl White as that is what they had in stock, works for me and is more visible than most helmets, except for the yellow or hi-vix one ones.
  19. BlueLghtning

    BlueLghtning Riding is my passion

    Joined:
    Feb 16, 2004
    Oddometer:
    5,533
    Location:
    Newnan, GA
    Are you sure you didn't end up with the Explorer helmet since you talk about the internal built in flip down sun shade? The Discovery doesn't have that?

    Edit: Looks like they are calling the one the Explorer Discovery Adventure (cheaper one) and the other the Explorer Adventure (which has the sunshade)
    - http://www.cyclegear.com/eng/product/Explorer_Adventure_Helmet/web1011511
    - http://www.cyclegear.com/eng/product/Explorer_Discovery_Adventure_Helmet/web1011695

  20. jeepkevin

    jeepkevin Adventurer

    Joined:
    Jul 20, 2009
    Oddometer:
    77
    So far so good with my Explorere experience. It does pinch my ears but that was easily changed. Optical distortion? Well hard to say. Looking at the lens in the store I would have said it might be an issue. After riding all day long with both visors, then one visor, not really much of a noticable issue. I get alot of airflow up from underneath compared to my other helmets. Riding with the inner visor down and the outer one up might be a nice trick for traffic on hot summer days. It think this will be a very good hot weather helmet.