I finally got around to getting this all down on the computer. The week gave me some time to really evaluate the features. Lots of pictures at the link on the bottom and a repeat of the following text:
Out of the box:
My first impression was how light this helmet is in comparison to my 5.5 year old Arai Signet G/T. This thing feels like a bicycle helmet in comparison. All of the little finer details pictured above started popping out at me right away. That shield is definitely a jewel on the front of this lid.
The manual looks like something out of a new electronic gadget. It is huge! Then you start to look through it and realize there are 6 main language sections and even some short sections for another handful of languages in the back. The manual has 322 pages! The English portion is 50 pages. Still a lot to read, but you have to wade through a lot of the legal/safety type stuff.
The stops for raising and lowering the shield are very positive. the only thing I have found is that when I lower the shield, I may have to double check both sides to be sure they are down. The first ďupĒ position is more solid than the others. So solid, that one side can be sealed while the other is still in the open position. This could prove to be useful someday, maybe in a cross wind or something. There are very substantial pieces molded into both sides of the bottom edge of the shield for opening and closing. I am very impressed with these in size, form, and location. Very usable!
The shield release is like butter. Arai always says their shields can be replaced without tools, and they can. Problem is, that unless you do it everyday, you never get comfortable with the force and the cracking sounds created during replacement. The Schuberth mechanism is as easy as pushing two buttons and the shield is free. To reinstall, just lineup the large pin and position guide then push until it snaps. Repeat on the other side.
The chin bar is another lovely experience. There are large/long grooves on both sides to guide the chin bar into position. Then simply push until you here it click. If you are wearing the helmet, it could be helpful to put one hand on the chin bar and one on the back of the helmet and push from both sides. Otherwise, you are relying on your neck.
The sun visor slides up and down with ease using the sliding button on the left hand side. If you remove the sun visor, reinstalling it should be done carefully. This one is not nearly as easy as the main shield. You have to be sure that it is completely installed. If it isnít, you will have issues with it dragging, which makes it very hard to use. If it is dragging, double check and make sure it is completely in. Give it a good press on either side. There doesnít seem to be a positive click or any other feedback that it is in place. Too bad, since everything else is done so well.
Chin strap is the standard Schuberth affair. I am getting used to it after years of D-rings. I still have to remind myself every time I remove the helmet. It takes some time to get used to inserting the little forks into the latch, but I am getting better at it. I donít really like the velcro that temporarily holds the flaps in place. Velcro always wants to grab hold something. Sometimes that is the helmet liner, the other strap, my glove, my jacket cuff, etc. Great stuff, but very tenacious. It always grabs when you want it to, but many times it grabs when you donít want it to.
I guess I should mention the AROS (anti roll off system). The only thing I can say is that I would never know that it is there if I hadnít read about it. That is a good thing. Safety devices that are transparent are the best.
Opening and closing the main vent on the top of the helmet is a no brainer. Well, letís not go that far. I am constantly finding myself asking, ďis that position open or closed?Ē It is so easy to use, but like most helmets, unless you can visualize the opening it is hard to remember which way is open. Even with the helmet off, you canít tell open from closed. Behind the screen of the LT, it can even be hard to sense when it is open. I shave my head, so I should be able to sense it, but not always. For reference, sliding the main vent backwards opens it.
I have tried the S1 at the dealership. As has been said before, the experience is like rebirth. The J1 is much easier. The instructions call for removing the chin bar before donning the helmet and installing it after the helmet is on. I have not found that to be necessary. Removing the chin bar does make the helmet more flexible. If you have a wider head, this could be a benefit. My head is more of a long oval shape. For me, I would say that putting the J1 on requires about 20% of the effort for the S1 and even 60% of the effort for the Arai.
This helmet has been very comfortable so far. I have done any multi day riding yet, but it has been great on my commutes. There does seem to be a little bit of pressure on the back of my head in two small areas on the top left and right. Only time will tell if this is truly bothersome or not.
One of the most impressive things. It is possible to even forget you have a helmet on. You have to try and see it. At the same time, I still feel protected. Maybe I am kidding myself, but confidence and security go a long way to being a good rider.
The sun visor is a nice addition. I do wish that it came down lower though. Too much light comes in at the bottom edge for my liking. The sun visor can be flipped so that the straight edge is at the bottom. I found that even more light comes in at the bottom in this position. It seems that the bottom edge is in about the same position as the top of the nose cutout when it is flipped.
The built in reflectors are a nice touch. Even smarter is that they are protected in the front by the shield. So they will not be damaged by debris over time. I have to say that I removed the Schuberth decals. I just donít like branded decals. The good news is that they were not clear coated onto the helmet. A plastic putty knife and some Goo Gone and they were removed in 20 minutes. They did have some reflective safety factor to them. I should add some reflective tape to improve my visibility. There is another reflector built into the fabric on the back edge of the helmet. Nice touch.
This helmet is an improvement over the Arai for sound. Many others have noted that 3/4 and even 1/2 helmets have been quieter for them than full face units. So far I have been very impressed with the reduction in wind noise. I think that cross winds will always be an issue with any helmet, but the J1 does seem to handle them fairly well.
It does seem that the shield blocks the upper vent when it is opened any further than the first click. This could be caused by the size of the screen on the LT and the general direction of airflow behind that sucker. I have to get more experience with this. I also just installed my VStream windscreen, so that could change things (maybe better or worse). I like having the shield up a little to get air around my face, but I also need some circulation in the helmet. My first multi-day ride is not until August, that will be the real test.
I am so used to handling my full face helmet by the chin bar. It is something I am adjusting to on the J1. I end up holding it by the cheek cover areas instead.
The chin bar is designed to pull off during an accident. This could prevent a serious neck injury. Very nice thought! That also means it could come off at an inopportune time as well. Basically, donít carry the thing by the chin bar. If it pops out because you have something in the helmet or you swung it too hard, you helmet will crash without your head in it. Of course Schuberth would recommend replacement at that point. Not many of us would replace a $550 helmet for a drop on the ground, not matter what the manufacturer says.
The helmet fits snugly into the LT top case. I havenít tried it in the saddle bags yet. I wear the XXL (62/63) in Schuberth sizing.