On a big trip accidents will happen. Especially while offroading, occasional tumbles are inevitable. Sander has experienced a couple of times, what a life saving device a helmet can be. As helmets are mandatory by law in the Netherlands, it really wasn't hard to decide on what helmets to bring. Just the ones we already owned. Although we are using two totally different helmets, they have one fundamental similarity. Both are flip-up helmets. This type of helmet is not only easy to put on, but is also allows easy communication with who-ever is going to be on your path. Originally both our helmets were flat black. In general this color is not an issue in the Dutch climate. But it is not the best color for visiting countries with lots of sun. So before we left we had both helmets painted white.
The Schuberth C3 is Sander's choice of helmets. He bought his first C3 a couple of years ago. But after the crash in Norway he tried a couple of other helmets as the Schuberth comes with a high pricetag. However none of the other brands/types did offer the same comfort as the Schuberth C3. And although the C3 may not be the best for offroading, it's still satisfactory. It also is very quiet.
After years of (ab)use the helmet is starting to show some signs of wear. Sealing rubbers are starting to let go and have been glued back to the helmet. Also the sun visor mechanism is broken. Benjamin of Helm and More in Munich has looked at it, but unfortunately wasn't able to fix it. He did however replace my fully scratched visor with one that was returned by a client. Super service! If there is one weak point for this helmet, it must be the visor springs. They tend to wear very fast, especially when moving the chin part up and down a lot. Luckely these springs are very cheap and easy to replace.
Caberg Rhyno Mini
Because Marianne has a very small head, it is very difficult to find a proper helmet. Normal (XS) sized helmets are way too big. So Marianne has to resort to kid sized helmets. There aren't a lot of junior flip up helmets. But the Caberg Rhyno Mini is one of them. Still this helmet is a bit to wide, so some extra padding was added. Although this helmet worked pretty well and did his job a couple of times, Marianne felt like it didn't offer the protection a normal helmet would. So as the helmet was getting older and older, we started looking for alternatives. But again it proved to be very difficult to find anything that fitted properly.
Schuberth C3 Lady Edition
Until this year's (2015) Motorbeurs in Utrecht. We found a dull white XS Schuberth C3 Lady edition. Marianne tried it on and it fitted perfectly. However being a Schuberth it came with the usual high pricetag. So we looked around some more. Marianne actually tried some other C3 Lady edition helmets. Although being the same size, etcetera none of them fitted as good as the first one. So there was only one thing to do. Handover the 400 euros and buy the helmet.
During the first test runs with the helmet, it turned out to be a major improvement. At least for Sander as the windnoise was reduced to a minimum. For the first time in years he could enjoy the silence coming out of the intercom system. At least someone was happy. But unfortunately Marianne was having a lot of discomfort. After some investigation, it turned out she wasn't putting on the helmet the right way. Causing her ears to fold up, resulting in a lot of pain. Having resolved that mistery, finally she can enjoy the helmet as well.
Some may like the solitude of motorcycling and don't bother about communication. But we found it to be a valuable addition to be able to communicate with eachother. To do so we have installed the Sena SMH10 set on both helmets. This set enables us to deliberate when and where to eat, drink and refuel. In general we just open the communication channel and never shut it down. Doing so the Sena allows us to communicate about two days of riding, without recharging. Sound quality and volume are very good. The set also allows to listen to music which is stored on a music player or telephone by bluetooth. We like the system very much. And when we had problems with one of the devices it was replaced under warranty without any hassle.
If there's one drawback we should mention, it would be the windguard. The quality of the original windguard is a bit disappointing. With a flip up helmet it is wearing very fast. After having used a couple of windguards, Sander replaced it with one of a different brand, which lasts a lot better.