Flip front helmets are much like full face helmets, but they allow the wearer to lift the chin section when not riding so that the face is not covered in filling stations or at any time the rider might want to stop and talk to someone.
The job of the outer shell is to disperse energy throughout the helmet to reduce the force felt during an impact. It’s typically made from polycarbonate or similar, but some high-end models make use of fibre glass or carbon fibre instead. These complex fibre composites don’t necessarily increase protection but can reduce weight without affecting strength. At the opposite end of the price scale, our entry level helmets still have very good shells.
The impact-absorbing liner is generally made from expanded polystyrene. It’s there to further absorb shock.
The comfort padding plays a very important role - it helps to ensure a snug fit so that the helmet doesn’t wobble and twist on the wearer’s head. Some helmets feature removable padding, which is handy for washing and cleaning purposes.
The retention system comprises of the chin strap and fastener. There are two main types: ratchet fasteners and D-ring fasteners. Neither is necessarily better than the other but the ratchet fasteners can be quicker to undo.
Flip front helmets do cost slightly more than equivalent quality full face helmets. Our entry level models start at around £99.99. Usually the higher-priced models feature improved design and extras such as integrated sun visors. Some also have a Pinlock visor system, which is an anti-misting solution that uses a special film on the inside of the visor to insulate and absorb moisture.
All of the flip front helmets we sell at JTS Biker Clothing are ‘E’ marked to comply with legislation. Most also have a SHARP (Safety Helmet Assessment & Rating Programme) score. The scores range from 1 to 5 stars. Most helmets currently on sale in the UK score at least 4, with a handful achieving the perfect 5 stars.
A correctly fitting helmet should be as snug as possible without causing pressure against the forehead or any other discomfort. The check pads should be quite snug - with a little use they are likely to bed in and compress very slightly.