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Thread: I hate my helmet...HELP

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  1. #1
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    I hate my helmet...HELP

    I'm a brand new rider after a 40 year lay off and I hate my new modular helmet. It fits great but the wind noise is just too much to take. I have even tried ear plugs but no help. I'm not ready to "dime" the maker yet because it just may be my fault. First it is a major manufacturer and I only paid $160.00 for it new so maybe I didn't invest enough money. I went back to the shop to ask what I could do and was told that modular helmets are like this. I've tried to adjust the windscreen on my 1150RS and this helped a little but seemed to add more buffeting. I don't know how I could take several hours of riding at cruise speed and not go crazy. I bought the BMW because of the smooth sound but I can't hear anything. Please help the new guy.
    Thanks Spence

  2. #2
    Ed Kilner #176066
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    I use custom fitted earplugs, but foam used to work well too. Have used a modular helmet style since 2000. They are not silent, but no helmet is or should be - you have to hear other traffic.

    I remember riding my Triumph 900 back from a charity rally. A black BMW with single wheel trailer went by and all i heard was tire noise. Perfect.

    Got my R1200rt on a test ride. Said no quieter than the triumph, ... Then thumbed the button to raise the screen ... Just tire noise!

    Yet, my helmet could still be quieter, fit better, have places for speakers and microphone, ...

    Try some others, every persons head seems to need a different fit.

    Once, ski boot fitting used foam for a custom fit - maybe this would work for helmets?

    We all suffer a bit.
    Ed
    2011 R1200RT Thunder Gray Metallic; 2000 Triumph 900(sold)
    http://triumphantsblog.blogspot.ca/

  3. #3
    IBA #44567 Ken F's Avatar
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    Spence, what oil do you like to use??? LOL
    This is going to start a firestorm...there are as many opinions out there as there are helmets.

    Personally, I just bought a Vmar full face and paid just about what you did.
    I'm amazed at how quiet it is, and I ride an R1100RSL, same bike as you.
    (I evenhave an 1150 windshield) The cheekpads fit like they were custom made for me, and the ventalition is great! I"ve never riden with a modular, but have heard that they are noisier. (is that even a word?)

    The RS model is not going to be as quiet as an RT or an LT by the nature of the design.
    personally, I usually run the windshield all the way down to allow the wind to help support my upper body. If there are lots of bugs out, it seems to funnel them right at my face so I'll raise it some to deflect the airflow over my helmet.

    Ken
    IBA #44567
    "Two things are infinite: the universe and human stupidity; and I'm not sure about the the universe."
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  4. #4
    Outlander Omega Man's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Spence View Post
    I'm a brand new rider after a 40 year lay off and I hate my new modular helmet. It fits great but the wind noise is just too much to take. I have even tried ear plugs but no help. I'm not ready to "dime" the maker yet because it just may be my fault. First it is a major manufacturer and I only paid $160.00 for it new so maybe I didn't invest enough money. I went back to the shop to ask what I could do and was told that modular helmets are like this. I've tried to adjust the windscreen on my 1150RS and this helped a little but seemed to add more buffeting. I don't know how I could take several hours of riding at cruise speed and not go crazy. I bought the BMW because of the smooth sound but I can't hear anything. Please help the new guy.
    Thanks Spence
    Hi Spence, if you are curious about the modular due to the "cracks and crevices" where it moves-you can put it on and then use electrical tape to go over the cracks and make the outer shell "smooth" to the wind. That will give you an idea if the mechanism is increasing the noise.
    I'm going to move this to the Gear section for better visibility. Good luck. Gary
    "Well they say.. time loves a hero but only time will tell.. If he's real, he's a legend from heaven If he ain't he was sent here from hell" Lowell George
    2009 F800GS 1994 TW200
    Part of the Forum Threadside Assistance Program

  5. #5
    Registered User 88bmwjeff's Avatar
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    I don't mean to sound demeaning, but are you sure you have installed the earplugs properly. I have trouble getting the foam ones into my left ear canal, and if I don't get it into the ear canal properly, it really doesn't provide much protection. So, make sure you are getting the foam ear plugs installed properly. I really need to roll them tight and install them relatively quickly or they expand too much. Any that's my $0.02.

    Also, foam earplugs come in different sound varieties (probably not the best way to put this), but some block out more sound than others.
    Jeff in W.C.
    1988 R100 RT (the other woman)
    "I got my motorcycle jacket but I'm walking all the time." Joe Strummer

  6. #6
    Motorradfahrer
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    Have you tried prying on it with a spoon?

  7. #7
    Registered User robsara's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jogitu View Post
    Have you tried prying on it with a spoon?


    Awesome.
    Rob R
    1994 K75 My first bike.

  8. #8
    Registered User robsara's Avatar
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    I have a helmet known to be noisy. I purchased some etymotic earplugs. The wetting technique outlined above works well. If you like them, they make headphones that fit about the same. Sometimes I use one, sometimes the other.

    I did test ride the shuberth, it was nice and quiet. $700 quiet? Not today, not in my families budget. You may try a different lid and see if you've got one that doesn't make sense for you.

    Or you can try and cut the wind. Maybe the screen is dumping all the wind in a bad spot for you. Lowering my screen and installing a laminar lip helped with the noise tremendously. Seems counter intuitive, but anyway...
    Rob R
    1994 K75 My first bike.

  9. #9
    Redd Bike GSRedd's Avatar
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    The Price is the Predictor

    Quote Originally Posted by Spence View Post
    I'm a brand new rider after a 40 year lay off and I hate my new modular helmet. It fits great but the wind noise is just too much to take. I have even tried ear plugs but no help. I'm not ready to "dime" the maker yet because it just may be my fault. First it is a major manufacturer and I only paid $160.00 for it new so maybe I didn't invest enough money. I went back to the shop to ask what I could do and was told that modular helmets are like this. I've tried to adjust the windscreen on my 1150RS and this helped a little but seemed to add more buffeting. I don't know how I could take several hours of riding at cruise speed and not go crazy. I bought the BMW because of the smooth sound but I can't hear anything. Please help the new guy.
    Thanks Spence

    Spence, there are many modulars that are good with sound. MAX WAX or foam help offset wind noise. I am looking to go Scherbutheee C3 - $699, but the helmet is good with noise and major brain protector. Est it might also give me a more hip look as I get old.

    T
    Tom
    2007 R1200GS
    ...my first BMW!
    MOA# 150128

  10. #10
    Unfunded content provider tommcgee's Avatar
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    Get the airflow off the helmet and the noise will mostly go away. This may mean a taller windscreen, laminar lip, or just adjust the screen you have.

    And earplugs are a must, soft foam works best for me. Howard Leight. I like the pink and yellow ones.
    Salty Fog Rally 2007, 2009, 2011, 2012, AND LOOKING FORWARD TO 2014!

    -Tom (KA1TOX)

  11. #11
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    Thanks for all the quick replies. I'm going to try the tape idea and see how that changes anything as well as better ear plugs. I didn't know they came in different DB ratings. I was flying with a friend yesterday who had a new set of Lightspeed S2 noise cancelling headsets. Nice! I wish they had something like that for MC helmets.
    Thanks Spence

  12. #12
    George K1200RS GeorgeK1200RS's Avatar
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    When inserting your earplugs, after mashing them try wetting with a lick of the tongue and pull up on the back of your ear when inserting. Wetting them a little sounds gross, but reduces the friction and they seat better.
    George
    R1200RT, K1200RS. Previous K1200LT, R80RT, R100R, R75/5

  13. #13
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    Spence, much of the noise can be caused by wind blowing up the neck. Quieter helmets will have a tight neck roll and a chin curtain. Try to close up those areas or keep those areas out of the air flow and see what happens.
    Good luck.
    2013 Triumph Trophy
    2007 R1200RT Broken driveshaft @ 54,000 miles. Come on BMW!
    2000 R1100rt sold @ 72,000 Great Bike!
    Iron Butt #24605

  14. #14
    Curmudgeon At Large Bobmws's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by GeorgeK1200RS View Post
    When inserting your earplugs, after mashing them try wetting with a lick of the tongue and pull up on the back of your ear when inserting. Wetting them a little sounds gross, but reduces the friction and they seat better.
    And hold them in place as they expand, otherwise they will move out of the canal and out of the optimal deep canal seal area. If they stick out of your ears like Frankenstein's bolts they are not properly fitted.

    Also, sometimes the issue can be where the wind hits you. Try raising or standing up to get your head in clean air.
    Bob Weis
    '04 K12RS - Hannigan Hack
    www.earplugco.com

  15. #15
    not so retired henzilla's Avatar
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    I had to wear company provided foam plugs and never cared for them under a helmet as they do take some practice to get right.
    If you are wearing any brand helmet and no hearing protection, you are most likely pushing the safe decibel limit for hearing health.

    I have these to use now when I am not wearing earphones:

    Etymotic ER-20...comfortable under a helmet...seals everytime...last a long time for the $12 price. Can still hear horns and sirens... They have different sizes.

    http://www.amazon.com/dp/B0044DEESS/...hvptwo=&hvqmt=
    Steve Henson
    SABMWRA MOA Club#62's Flat Fixer/ current forum moderator
    It's not the breaths you take, but the moments that take your breath away-D.Dillon/G. Strait

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