Bilt Evolution Modualr Helmet review

Discussion in 'Battle Scooters' started by guzziknight, Nov 5, 2014.

  1. guzziknight

    guzziknight Been here awhile

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    Let me start by saying I’ve never been a fan of Bilt helmets. They’ve always seemed cheaply made to me, and I’ve questioned their quality. I do believe they’re better than nothing though, and getting better made every generation.<?xml:namespace prefix = "o" ns = "urn:schemas-microsoft-com:eek:ffice:eek:ffice" /><o:p></o:p>

    I’ve been looking for a new modular helmet for a while now. It’s been hard finding one that comfortable, quiet, has the features I want, and fits my budget. I found a good possibility in the LS2 FS386. It looks good, has a very good SHARP safety rating, and good features. It was a little more than I wanted to spend at $180+tax, but not too bad given what you get. I like the ratchet chin strap, but I don’t like the controls to raise and lower the inner visor, or the chin bar.<o:p></o:p>

    I stopped by Cycle Gear and looked at the Bilt Evolution. Currently, it’s priced at $108 for the Hi-Vis Yellow, which is the color I wanted. Everything on the helmet seemed well thought out. The chin bar mechanism works well, metal to metal contacts on it, the inner visor is actuated by a sliding lever on the left side, and the chin bar detent at the top is very solid. The face shield is very stiff, and seems to seal well, although I haven’t tested it in the rain. The gap between the chin bar and helmet is very small, and very tight.<o:p></o:p>

    The helmet seemed to be what I was looking for, and it felt like it was very well made, so I bought it. I immediately took it on a 300 mile ride and was extremely pleased! This was one of the quietest helmets I’ve ever used on my bike. I would go so far as to say the only thing quieter was my full face. I also have a Gmax GM54, and after a day of riding, my ears would be ringing, even with ear plugs, my head would be pounding, and I would be worn out! No such thing with the Evolution. It was so quiet that I could even ride with the face shield opened at 60 mph, something I could never do with the Gmax. The only modular I’ve used that came close to this one was my old Nolan 100E, which I loved.<o:p></o:p>

    Will this helmet do what it’s meant to do in a crash, I don’t know, but I think it’ll be fine. It feels that well built to me. Will it last? I don’t know, but at $108, and with a 5 year guarantee, it’s worth the risk. <o:p></o:p>

    These are just my opinions, and as usual: YMMV. <o:p></o:p>
    #1
  2. guzziknight

    guzziknight Been here awhile

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    That's been my feelings about the Nolan's as well. Plus, I think they changed their helmet shapes as the new ones don't fit me anymore.

    I would love to buy a Shoei Neotec, but I can't afford that!
    #2
  3. fullmetalscooter

    fullmetalscooter Let me take this duck off

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    #3
  4. guzziknight

    guzziknight Been here awhile

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    I can buy the LS2 locally for $180, and I would rather support a small, local shop if I can.

    My point was that I think Bilt did an excellent job with this helmet, and hopefully that will translate to better stuff across the board.

    The more I wear the helmet, the more I'm liking it.
    #4
  5. greer

    greer Long timer Supporter

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    guzziknight,

    Have you tried that helmet in the rain yet? I'm hoping it doesn't leak around the shield. Also, how does the slider for the inner sun screen work? Is it spring-loaded and either fully up or down, or will it slide and hold in any position I choose? I like one I can slide down just a tad and use as a visor. I put a million miles on a 100E and a bunch on an N90, but I suffered a mishap this past summer and the N90 is done for. I'm thinking I'd like to try a Hi-Viz helmet this time around. Thanks.

    Sarah
    #5
  6. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer Supporter

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    I have a lot of Bilt riding gear and have found that most of it works really well and have been satisfied with it. There have been a few exceptions. I do have a Bilt full face helmet that only cost $50. I use it as my run around town and spare helmet. I have few complaints with it. It is starting to show signs of wear after 3+ years of constant use but it was only 50 bucks and I'll replace it in a year or two. I would have considered the Bilt Modular helmet but I had already bought a Fulmer Modular with all the same features and I only paid $100 for it. The Fulmer is pretty noisy so I may consider the Bilt when it's time to replace it.

    Thanks for the review.
    #6
  7. Wentwest

    Wentwest How's that work?

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    If you read Motorcycle Consumer news from 2013 http://www.motorcycleconsumernews-digitalmagazine.com/mcnews/201308d?pg=25#pg24, page 25 and following, you can see that they seem to find the Schuberth the most comfortable, etc., but very expensive. I use Bilt helmets because, so long as they are comfortable FOR ME, then I'm happy. I don't ride long distances, so I'm not very sensitive to minor comfort issues. It's easy to just assume that the more expensive helmet is better, but that's just not always the case.
    #7
  8. doc4216

    doc4216 Chronic High Fiver

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    Quizz,

    I completely agree with your review. I bought the same helmet recently and have absolutely loved the comfort of it. I have rode it in the rain, from mists to heavy downpours, and I had no leakage issues with mine. Hopefully your experience will be the same. This helmet has certainly turned me into a Bilt fan!
    #8
  9. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer Supporter

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    One of the complaints I have heard about some Bilt helmets with a drop down visor is that the mechanism is prone to failing. I don't know that it is a problem with this particular helmet. I'd like to see a review from someone after a year or so of use. I know the the mechanism on my Fulmer seemed a little cheap when I got it but it hasn't failed after 4 years.

    Also, how are the optics in the drop down visor? Any distortion?

    As for the outer face shield, the one on my Bilt helmet has held up well. I think most Bilt helmets use the same face shield.
    #9
  10. AMAC1680

    AMAC1680 Outdoorsman, advocate, paraplegic

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    I use Bilt gear as my everyday beat it up stuff. Last march I got hit and took a slide across the hard at about 35 mph. Hit Mellon and bounced a few times

    I was wearing the following.
    Bilt Racer mesh/armor jacket
    Bilt iron workers Kevlar/armor jeans
    Bilt roadster 3/4 helmet
    Boots, gloves etc.

    I always hoped that the inexpensive gear would work and it preformed perfect. Except for some road rash at the small of the back, I didn't zip the jacket and pants together, no "new" damage to this crip. None of the gear was reusable to say the least. The ER doctors were impressed, so was I.

    Happy I didn't tear up my expensive gear.......:eek1

    I replaced the roadster with a Bilt solar modular. Base model but after a year it's a comfortable winter hat. I like the drop down inner shield. No distortion.

    Be Big,
    AMAC
    #10
  11. TrimSlim

    TrimSlim Where's the chile?

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    Anyone wearing glasses with the Bilt Evolution Modular? I currently wear a full face Scorpion EXO-400 which fits my head quite well, but it does not work well with my thin metal glass frames.
    #11
  12. guzziknight

    guzziknight Been here awhile

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    Hi Sarah,

    No, I haven't tried it in the rain yet. But, the upper edge of the face shield is curved inward, making what appears to be a tighter seal with the rubber. Seems like it would work well, but I haven't tried it yet.

    The inner visor is operated by a lever on the left side. is held by friction, so I imagine you could stop it anywhere you like. For me, it's either up or down, I don't stop it in the middle.
    #12
  13. guzziknight

    guzziknight Been here awhile

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    No distortion at all, with either the face shield or the inner visor.

    As far as the mechanism failing, it has a 5 year warranty, and Cycle Gear has always been easy to deal with when it comes to returns/exchanges and warranty issues. A friend returned some gloves he bought a few years ago, they were all torn up, and they gave him store credit, no questions asked.
    #13
  14. greer

    greer Long timer Supporter

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    Thank you! Sounds like it would be worth a trip to Cycle Gear to check it out. Thanks again.

    Sarah



    #14
  15. guzziknight

    guzziknight Been here awhile

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    Anytime!! Check their sales flyers. When I looked at their website last week, it wasn't on sale anymore. It was back to it's MSRP of $256.
    #15
  16. klaviator

    klaviator Long timer Supporter

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    Just wait a bit. It will go back on sale soon. Just about all Bilt stuff goes on sale on a regular basis.
    #16
  17. greer

    greer Long timer Supporter

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    Yep, I figured I'd take a look first, then watch for a sale. There's a store 100 miles north in Louisville, and one a bit closer south in Nashville. Thanks again, everybody.

    Sarah
    #17
  18. Houndguy

    Houndguy super noob!!!

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    I'm glad I found this thread. I'm going to be in the market for a new helmet soon.

    Do we have an update on it's use?
    #18
  19. guzziknight

    guzziknight Been here awhile

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    Almost 2 months now and still loving the helmet. No issues with it at all, and it's breaking in nicely. I still haven't used it in the rain, so no word on that yet. I still highly recommend checking it out.
    #19
  20. Bueller

    Bueller Cashin? Super Supporter

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    I'm told this is the same shell, liner, etc., as the LS2 FF386. I just bought one of those online from Competition Accessories (gloss black only) for $129.00 with free shipping. I think mediums and smalls are $119.00.

    Iron Pony is a huge motorcycle dealer and accessory distributor, and also happens to be just across town from me. I rode there today and tried one of these on. I also tried on modulars from Schuberth, HJC, Vega, Nolan, and GMax, and found the LS2 to be the nicest, best fit for my head. I would have purchased it on the spot but they wanted $169.99. I saved $40.00 going online and don't feel bad about using Iron Pony as a fitment shop because I regularly spend plenty of money there :lol3
    #20