Lets say you went out and spent about a hundred bucks on paint for your home, put the stuff up on the walls and when you were done, the paint had dried and you took a look and... well you didn't notice any difference. You'd be P.O'ed right? Well the Rudy Project T-Rex Ferox Helmet is exactly like that. Seconds after you put the thing on your brain case, it disappears, or at least it seems to! Only in this case it is a good thing! Read on!
Initial visual inspection of the helmet immediately showed that a much nicer, heavier, yet softer strap material had been used here than in most helmets. The internal structure of the helmet also seemed to be more securely positioned inside the body of it. The stronger, heavier plastic that makes up the support structure of many other helmets seems rather tentative about where it actually belongs within the confines of helmet body. The Rudy supports, while fully flexible, seemed to know where in that space they belonged, and if you moved them, they immediately returned to where they were originally when you released them. The helmet structure is obviously well designed.
For our tests Dan had suggested a regimen of smashing your head into a brick wall 20 times or so, and if the helmet was still intact, and your brain was only slightly rattled, well then the helmet passed the test! He really thought this was a good idea for Me to try. But in actuality a helmet is really designed to protect your brain case only once! Now he actually already knows that so I can't fathom why he would have suggested it. But, since the helmet meets all of the us consumer products safety commission helmet standards safety parameters, our test will be strictly about style and feel. We'll presume that it will keep the soft stuff inside and the hard stuff outside.
I would however, like to take this moment to review something many riders and people in general may not be fully aware of! A helmet for riding is designed as a ONE TIME protective device! If you are unfortunate enough to encounter a crash in which the helmet has done its job, It will be broken and of no further use, other than a wall ornament! The idea is simply that the helmet takes the damage but it leaves your head intact!
Elsewhere on this site in one of the safety articles there are pictures of Dan's helmet after a crash. It is broken in at least four places, and is now junk! Yet it is one of Dan's most prized possessions because it in all probability saved his life!
Additionally a helmet is NOT a once in a lifetime purchase! First of all they will get really funky! Your head sweats profusely! It's life, get used to it! Change the pads, maybe once and then when it gets funky again pitch the sucker and buy a new one! The sun, your sweat, the heat of your car, the heat of day, the cold of winter, all these elements break down your helmet's materials. Hard stuff gets soft, soft stuff gets hard, the foam turns to gritty powder and all the stuff that is supposed to work just so is now not working so good. So my recommendation is that if you ride regularly, replace your helmet every year, or every other year at the most!
Style, well, that is a personal reaction and preference. I think the thing looks good on my head, but I have also been known to wear Crusher Cowboy hats too, so what could I possibly know. Anyway, you take a look and decide!
My issue is comfort! I am REALLY BIG on comfort. So then, why do I ride a road bike? Is that not a contradiction? Simply, it's just because it feels so good when I get OFF THE BIKE! How does this helmet fit into that equation then? Well, I can only barely tell you. I put it on my head and promptly forgot it was there! Now this would be a good thing! What I did notice was the extremely comfortable straps, and padding. In that brief instant in which I was aware of the helmet at all, it was very comfortable.
I got the job of testing the helmet simply because the supplied helmet was a large. Dan said something about my head being bigger than anyone else's in the club, so I got to try it out! My head is actually at the top end of what would be a medium, but since I wear a bandanna to keep the sweat out of my eyes, the combo worked. About half way through the ride out to Babylon I noticed that the helmet was getting a bit loose. The bandanna was now saturated and stuck to my head, so the space it had taken up at the start of the ride had decreased substantially. At some stop light or another I whipped off the helmet and gave the very unique headband adjustment knob a twist and off we rode with not another wobble or slip! What an easy adjustment method! Whoever thought of it my hat goes off to you, but the helmet stayed on!
The thing I noticed immediately as we pedaled off was the quiet! I even remarked before we were off my block that this helmet had NO WIND NOISE! I guess I had been subtly aware of the noise in the other helmets I had worn, but it was not until I used this one that I really noticed it. For the record, I have ridden with my old helmets since testing the Rudy, and what I had almost convinced myself was an illusion is real! The straps on my other helmets make wind noise as the air passes over them and I would guess the helmet itself must do the same. Now it is not like a 747 taking off, and you really can hear the traffic and other riders over it, but with the Rudy, the sound was absent! What you did hear were the sounds of your chain and running gear and the sound of the tires on the pavement, but you heard no wind noise from the helmet or straps! I found this a pleasure.
Ok I admit it! I occasionally ride my mountain bike around my neighborhood, especially when I run my Golden Retriever Lilly, WITHOUT A HELMET! This is a violation of every common sense biking rule, but I bring it up only because with the Rudy Project T-Rex Ferox it will no longer be necessary. Riding with the Rudy is like riding without a helmet, only much safer!