Shoei X-11 Review - BMW Luxury Touring Community
 
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post #1 of 7 Old Jul 6th, 2006, 9:38 pm Thread Starter
 
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Shoei X-11 Review

I just received my new Shoei X-11 yesterday, and took it for a 120-mile test drive today in temperatures ranging from the low 60s at the coast to the low 90s in Simi Valley and the San Fernando Valley. I was riding behind a cut-down windshield on my Harley Softail Classic.

The Good:

This is one beautiful helmet. Unlike most others, the vents are not stuck on like an afterthought; they're faired into the helmet, making for a very smooth laminar air flow. The finish is perfect, mine being called "Light Silver" which sparkles in the sunlight. I chose that color for visibility and heat reflectivity. First thing I did was peel off that rather tacky looking Shoei sticker on the front of the helmet.

This is also a very, very light helmet. How light? I don't know exactly, but an order of magnitude lighter than my previous Caberg Justissimo. Also, the field of vision is incredible. Peripheral vision is extremely wide, such that I don't have to twist my neck around to do a head-check, and the vision up or down is also superb.

Attaching and detaching the shield may be the simplest and best system in the helmet universe. Push down a little latch on each side and the shield pops on or off. That's it. Two seconds flat, either way.

Some have complained about how the extra bit of chinstrap is secured. Yes, it's hard to do with gloves on. So put the helmet on first, THEN put the gloves on. I don't see what the big deal is.

The thing fits like it was tailor-made for me, with an extremely plush, soft interior and firm cheekpads. I have a slightly oval-shaped head, so round helmets (which typically include all the European helmets, including Caberg, Nolan, etc.) cause a hot spot across my forehead after a short time. This one fit perfectly. (The only other helmet to fit this well was the Arai RX-7 Corsair, which is similarly shaped.) The Shoei RF-1000, in contrast, was too round for me.

Vents. Does this thing ever vent. I hit the coast with all vents open, and had to close them as the cold airflow, especially across the top of my head, was too strong. In very hot weather, I opened them and my head never sweated. This is a first for me in a full-face or flip helmet.

There was no buffeting at all, either looking straight ahead or when performing head-checks. Nor was there any lift. I look over my windshield, so the helmet was directly in the airflow but wasn't fazed by it.

The Less Good:

This is a noisy helmet. I mean Noisy with a capital N. To a large degree, the vents cause the noise. Things got a lot quieter when I closed them. It's also the case that helmets are almost always noisier behind a fairing or windshield. But seriously, I started out without earplugs, which I always wear, so that I could gauge the difference with and without, but when I put the earplugs in, it was still one noisy helmet.

There's something called a Whisper Strip that Shoei sells in the UK that goes around the bottom of the helmet and which Shoei claims cuts the noise in half. But I'm very reluctant, after having shelled out big-time for the helmet, to pay another $40 or so for something that should have been included in the first place. Makes me think that senior Shoei management have all attended the Harley-Davidson marketing seminar taught by Professors Dewey, Cheatum and Howe.

Conclusion:

I will probably buy the Whisper Strip. The helmet is too superior in every other category to allow the noise issue to marginalize it, especially when a simple fix is available. In addition, today was a particularly windy day, which may have added to the cacophony.

List price for this model is $539. I paid $435, including shipping, at Helmet Harbor , plus another $35 for a dark smoke shield. Fast shipping, knowledgeable service.

Hope this helps someone.

Philip
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post #2 of 7 Old Jul 7th, 2006, 12:48 am
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Nice review Philip. Thanks for taking the time. Regarding the Whisper Strip, will it work on the X-11? The UK websites I looked at said it is for the Raid II and the XR-1000. Perhaps they call the X-11 something different in Europe. Thanks again.
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post #3 of 7 Old Jul 7th, 2006, 8:36 am Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunderland
Nice review Philip. Thanks for taking the time. Regarding the Whisper Strip, will it work on the X-11? The UK websites I looked at said it is for the Raid II and the XR-1000. Perhaps they call the X-11 something different in Europe. Thanks again.
Further research shows you're correct. I had thought the XR-1000 and the X-11 were the same helmet, but in fact the X-11 is the equivalent of the Euro X-Spirit.

So I'll have to move to Plan B: Buy better earplugs!

Thanks for pointling out my error.

Philip

Last edited by philip; Jul 7th, 2006 at 8:56 am.
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post #4 of 7 Old Jul 8th, 2006, 12:07 pm
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Philip,

I e-mailed Racevisors.co.uk with this question:

"I would like to purchase a Shoei Whisper Strip, but I have a Euro X-Spirit (X-11).
Will the Whisper Strip work on the X-Spirit? Thank you for your help."
Byron


"Yes it will."

Regards
Tony
www.racevisors.co.uk
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post #5 of 7 Old Jul 8th, 2006, 1:33 pm Thread Starter
 
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So, all is not lost!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sunderland
Philip,

I e-mailed Racevisors.co.uk with this question:

"I would like to purchase a Shoei Whisper Strip, but I have a Euro X-Spirit (X-11).
Will the Whisper Strip work on the X-Spirit? Thank you for your help."
Byron


"Yes it will."

Regards
Tony
www.racevisors.co.uk
Excellent news, Sunderland, and pretty good detective work as well! I believe I'll order mine now.

Thanks a lot.

Philip
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post #6 of 7 Old Oct 10th, 2006, 12:40 am
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by philip

The thing fits like it was tailor-made for me, with an extremely plush, soft interior and firm cheekpads. I have a slightly oval-shaped head, so round helmets (which typically include all the European helmets, including Caberg, Nolan, etc.) cause a hot spot across my forehead after a short time. This one fit perfectly. (The only other helmet to fit this well was the Arai RX-7 Corsair, which is similarly shaped.) The Shoei RF-1000, in contrast, was too round for me.

Philip

Hi Philip...

My wife bought an RF1000 today for herself; she rides an R1200ST. An assistant sized up her head (she felt it)... and summized she had an oval shaped head. I felt my wifes head and thought....How did she come up with that??? My wife told me to to shut up and let the lady do her job..Okay..I walked off and looked at bikes. Anyway..the assistant went over the helmet and checked it for fit and that RF1000 fit her like a glove.

...Then she tried an X-11 on, and the fit was not as good for her. The assistant told us the X-11 fits a rounder head so that may be why she wasnt liking it as much. The cheek pads also pushed up on her face...but I understand those can be replaced. She said it just didnt feel right on her head compared to the RF1000. She said her ears were pressing into the sides of the helmet....hmmm...me thoughts said she has a round head and the X-11 is narrower, thus explaining her problem. Ahh..but what do I know... I was reminded...do you sell helmets for a living honey? Well, she does this everyday!..........."oooh...I See Ducatis over there honey.....I'll be over there" I said.

Just thought it was interesting...this assistant may have gotten it backwards...but the important thing is my wife walked out with a helmet that fits her like a glove....whatever shape head she has.

Last edited by sundance; Oct 10th, 2006 at 1:03 am.
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post #7 of 7 Old Oct 12th, 2006, 9:09 pm
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whisper strip

I bought a whisper strip for my X-11, can't say it made ANY difference on the noise level, but it does reduce ventillation...and if that's what you're after, get one of those full band things made out of neoprene that go all the way around the opening of the helmet to seal it for cold weather riding.

Save your $40.

Pete

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