A Half Helmet is the most basic type of protective headgear you can wear on your bike. These helmets feature a simple dome design that covers the top of the rider’s head, and that’s about it. These helmets are often worn because the lightweight design is less fatiguing than other helmets on a long ride.
They also give you the free-wheeling wind in your face feel while you ride. The flip side is that a half helmet will leave your face unprotected in most cases, so you will have to augment your helmet with a set of riding goggles and a facemask if you want to avoid the grit of the road in your teeth.
A three-quarter helmet steps up the protection of a half helmet with the addition of some protection for the lower, back half of your skull. Many three-quarter helmets also include a windscreen to protect a rider’s eyes and face on the road, eliminating the need for goggles or a facemask in some cases. Three-Quarter helmets are often referred to as ‘open face’ helmets, because of the absence of a chin bar. This means an open face helmet loses some of the protection of a full face model, but they can also be more convenient, as you won’t be forced to completely remove your helmet every time you need to grab a drink of water.
A full face helmet, as you might expect, covers your full face, providing the most protection compared to the other two classes. These helmets add to the three-quarter design by adding a chin bar, as well as a full visor for outstanding wind and debris protection on the road. Full face helmets can be heavy, and over long periods riders can experience neck and back strain when wearing these. A full face helmet can also be hotter than other types of helmets, so looking for a well-vented model is important to staying comfortable on the road.
A modular helmet is a combination between the comfort and convenience of an open face and a full face helmet. Normally these helmets look very much like any other full face helmet however the chin bar can be lifted up from in front of a rider’s face so they can get some fresh air and a bite to eat without removing the helmet completely. While they do provide protection from the wind and debris the same as a full face helmet, modular helmets don’t hold up as well as full face helmets in the event of an impact, so consider your priorities when you ride.
There is one feature that a helmet should have for any rider: A great fit. The fit of your helmet is a big factor in how well it can protect you if you crash. A loose, or too tight helmet might not soak up force the way it’s supposed to, so make sure you try on lots of helmets to find the fit that’s right for you. When trying on helmets make sure to fasten and tighten the straps so you get a feel for how the helmet will fit while you ride. Move your head around, sit on a bike and try to look over your shoulder, walk around and talk for a minute, how does it feel? If the helmet wobbles on your head, obscures your vision uncomfortably, pinches consistently, or just doesn’t feel right, try something else! Don’t be afraid to check out some different types as well, you may have your heart set on a full face helmet, but find that a three-quarter helmet is just more comfortable for you, that’s ok! Making sure you have a comfortable fit for your helmet will help to ensure you wear it every time you ride!
No matter which helmet is right for you, we’ve got a great selection of motorcycle helmets available at Rattlesnake Mountain Harley-Davidson dealership in Kennewick, WA near Richland, Pasco, Walla Walla, Washington.