I grew up in the South and never really wore a helmet unless I had to ride though a state that had a helmet law. And when I did had to wear a helmet it was usually something cheap that provided little to no protection. When I moved West and learned the refined art of California lanesplitting I figured I should upgrade to a more protective helmet when dealing with millions of angry So. Cal drivers while commuting from Long Beach to Hollyood.
After trying on more than a few helmets at my local bike shop I found that the Arai Defiant helmet’s “Intermediate Oval” shape to fit me best out of the box. Because of my lack of interest in helmets I never really knew much about the Arai brand. After looking them up on the Internet and asking around I learned that the a family of skilled craftsman in Japan hand makes every helmet one-by-one. and they have been doing it that way for over sixty years. I also learned that it’s the helmet of choice for the Moto GP and Formula One race set. You know, the guys that go balls-out racing at 200mph on two and four wheels.
After learning these facts the price of this helmet didn’t sting so much and so I went with the Pro Cruise over the regular Defiant helmet. I did this because of the Pro Shade system, which offers an externally-adjustable smoke-tinted shade that can be dropped over the clear shield when the sunny sun rears its head. The shield it also acts like a visor when flipped up making the Pro Shade super handy.
Once I started riding with this helmet I found that the cheek pads were a bit snug for my manly-sized head. Good thing for me that Arai’s proprietary peel-away surface cheek pads gave me the option of reducing their thicknesses by 5mm at a time until I got exactly the fit I needed. After I fine-tuned the cheek pads it really felt like this helmet we made for me.
I have been riding with this helmet for a few months now and it the fit is still excellent and it has shown little to no signs of wear even with the abuse I have put this poor helmet through. I would say that if you are in the market for a real helmet that offers a great fit and ultimate protection, you really should consider this helmet.
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