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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Well, I've been searching for a new FF helmet for a long time. I kept floundering with my decision, Shoei, HJC, Icon, etc. But I wanted something a little different, something a little more rare, black, not obscenely expensive, and would make people cock their head and say, what the heck is that? So I settled on a Simpson helmet. I liked the Outlaw, but it looked like more of a drag strip helmet, and lacked vents on the top of the helmet, which made me wonder about the heat in TX. I decided on a Street Bandit instead, cheaper too. Problem is, there are not any Simpson Dealers in East TX. So I emailed the sales department. Wow, they were helpful (in sarcastic tone) I received 1 email back asking me what sate I was in, I replied, then nothing. Way to sell your product. So I was left to my own means, the internet and the forum. There is NOTHING on the internet, so thanks to Smoothrod, HightechHarley, and SmokinJoe for the input they gave me. I tried to order one form Helmetcity.com but they were out and said 6-8 weeks until they could get one. The word is the Simpson helmets are made in TX, but the shells (according to helmetcity) are made overseas. So I resorted to Ebay, and found a good deal. I got one ride in this afternoon so this is a preliminary report.

Size: Thanks to Lonnie and SmokinJoe I ordered the right size, a medium. I wear a large (HJC and Shoei) normally but Simpson runs a bit big. I have a 22 1/2 in head.

Venting: The Street Bandit vents pretty well, which I was pleasantly surprised by. The chin vents allow in a lot of air, as there is just cloth behind them (see pic). The upper vents looked like more for show, as there were not any rear exhaust, but when I opened them I could feel the air so I guess they work. I rode today in 89 temps with crazy humidity (feels like 94) and was never hot. A lot of air can circulate under your chin.

Aerodynamics Outstanding. You can tell these guys make racing helmets. I was surprised at how stable this helmet was at speed (~75mph) My HJC CL-14 bounced around quite a bit at 65 mph. Even when I turned my head it was stable. This helmet was worth it for that alone.

Shield: Interesting shape as it follows the contour of your face, looks very cool. However, despite the "Enlarged Eyeport" claim it is not that big. I measured the largest portion to be 4 inches top to bottom (see pic). When compared to the HJC, which measures at 5 inches, it's not that big. However, I really couldn't tell the difference when riding. Simpson shields are hard to raise (As pointed out by Lonnie). There is a small post that keeps the shield in place and you literally have to bend the shield to get it to clear the post. Great if you go over 100 mph and have your shield open up on you, a little work at stop lights. The shield itself is very thick and seems a high quality.

Comparison: I have only ridden with a HJC CL-14, which is a good helmet, so I don't have a lot to compare too. But Overall the Quality of the Simpson compares well to it. Somethings are lacking is some areas but made up in other. The Simpson is smaller than the HJC (HJC is a large). The Simpson had more air circulating around the front of my face, which I liked. But the Street Bandit was so much more stable.

Buckle: The Simpson uses a simple D ring buckle, the best. But there is not a snap to hold the loose end. There is a rubber band to loop it under though. Wonder how long it will last.

Quality: This is conflicting, the face shield does not sit flush with the rubber seal. (See Pic) So I am sure there is some wind noise. However, I ride with earphones/protection so I can't hear it. The paint is good, and the liner seems to be a good quality. The vents on the top seem flimsy and ready to break (see pic) as there is a VERY small plastic bump that locks it. The liner around the base of the neck is nice and thick, which should reduce wind "booming" noises, but again, I ride with an Ipod. Overall I am glad I broke the cardinal rule of helmet buying in buying a helmet I had never even seen. :D Now I just need a smoke shield, which is impossible to find right now.


On Good Ol' Nbr7
7,267 Posts
Get a black visor and it will look like Darth Vader.....


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