Well, I went south for the long Memorial Day weekend to meet some friends at my place in southern Indiana and to ride the curves in Indiana and Kentucky. And on this trip, I wore the HJC FS-15 helmet I had purchased in March. About 2-3 hours into the trip, I had a sore spot in the middle of my forehead that was uncomfortable and becoming very painful. Clearly the helmet wasn’t fitting properly. By slightly loosening the chin strap and shifting the position of the helmet, I made it to the cabin. I pulled the liner out of the way and began to perform surgery on the foam to try and get a better fit. Suffice it to say that I was unsuccessful. The next three days varied from uncomfortable to downright painful and I will probably not wear that helmet again. It hurt that badly. I did some more research into helmet shapes and found that there are two basic shapes – round and long oval. Not exterior shapes, but interior shapes. Most Asian people fit into the round shape and most Americans fit the long oval shape better. I also found out that HJC primarily make round-shaped helmets and clearly I need a long oval shape for the helmet to be comfortable for me.
By looking for long-oval shaped helmets, I foound that Shark makes a very high quality helmet in the model RSi. They make other helmets in round and round-oval shapes too, but I was pretty sure that I needed an RSi model. I measured and began looking at various retailers to see what was available. I found an RSi on closeout at motorcyclecloseoouts.com for more than $200 off the original retail price and I ordered it. It arrived in just a few days and as aoon as I put it one I knew this was the right shape for me. It fit perfectly, no pressure points at all, anywhere. Since I work from home, I left it on for a while and it was still very comfortable. The quality is excellent and the visor removal/replacement is very simple. It is also a very lightweight helmet, and no comparison with the modular helmets in this regard. At last – a comfortable helmet that didn’t break the bank.
The downside – sliding my glasses on after donning the helmet is proving to be a challenge. I can sometimes do it, but usually not the first time. I need to find a way to cut a “glasses groove” in the upper part of the cheekpad to help out. I don’t know how to do that just yet, but I’ll figure it out. I can live with that issue for now, because the other issues I had are completely solved.
Light weight, the protection of a full-face helmet, and proper fit. 3 out of 4 is pretty good and I’ll fix the glasses thing soon enough. Then, I’ll be 4 out of 4.