My good riding pal Hal just got a Shark RSR2. Here are his initial impressions. More to come . . .
Got my new Shark RSR2 helmet the other day and have been wearing it around the house a bit. Here are my impressions so far, though I have yet to take a ride with it.
- The build quality is as good or better than I have ever seen in a helmet. Outstanding finish quality.
- The visors are 3mm thick. From now on everything else will seem flimsy.
- The mirrored visor on the Shark is noticeably more tinted than the Shoei.
- Removal and installation of the visor is simple enough. Not quite as easy as a Shoei, but almost.
- There are no detents that hold the visor open. Instead, you adjust the tension on a little lever device on each side of the helmet. This means that you can open the visor just a tiny crack if you want. I hope this turns out to work well.
- The visors have a small round hole on the bottom right side that fits over a rounded metal post attached to the helmet. This ensures that the visor stays down. When you want to lift the visor there is an indentation in the helmet below the metal post where you can work a gloved finger in to pull out slightly on the visor to lift it. Seems like it will work pretty well.
- There are two vents in the front. The top vent has a big opening. Looks like it will let in a lot of air. Maybe lots of bugs too. The chin vent looks like it will work well. There is an exhaust vent at the top of the helmet that is integrated into the rear spoiler. All the vents can be operated with a gloved hand. The Shoei X11 has two top vents in the front. One just above the visor, and one on the crown. I’ve liked this arrangement. It will be interesting to see if I am happy with the Shark’s vents.
- The RSR2 is noticeably lighter than the Shoei X11 when you are holding them in your hands. When they are on your head it is tough to tell the difference. However, it may be a difference that shows up after a long day of riding.
- The helmet is slightly taller and wider than the Shoei. It simply looks bigger, though not necessarily in a bad way.
- The fit: Feels a lot like my X11 except around the ears. Shoei has a nice cupped area for the ears. Frenchmen must have really small ears, because the Shark is very shallow in the ear pocket. I’ll either have to modify the padding, get another set of cheek pads, or hope like hell it breaks in without a lot of discomfort. Right now I have no idea how I am going to get my Scala Rider ear pocket speakers into the helmet.
- All of the padding snaps out for easy cleaning. And the quality of the padding is first rate.
- It looks like it will be easier to keep the Shark clean of bugs on the front of the helmet. The X11 has a bunch of places where bug guts seem to collect around the vents.
- Underneath the inside padding the foam liner has ridges that are designed to crush and/or deform on impact. The Shoei has no such ridges, just a relatively smooth foam liner. This is probably one of the reasons the helmet is slightly larger than the Shoei. Does it work to lessen the impact to the head? Seems like it should.
- The helmet came with tearoffs, and the visors come with the mounting posts for the tearoffs. I’m sure I’ll never use them, but the feature has a kind of coolness factor.