Hexr Helmet Review
Well, my custom fit Hexr helmet has arrived. Unlike buying a normal helmet, purchasing a Hexr is a little more involved. Rather than popping down to your LBS, or clicking online, getting a Hexr onto your head requires patience.
Why do you need to be patient? After all, it’s just another helmet, right? Well, no. The Hexr has some unique qualities that make it stand out from the crowd. For full details read my preview. The Hexr features a custom 3D printed fit and is constructed with an innovative cell structure that is 26% safer than traditional helmets. Plus the main body is manufactured from castor oil rather than EPS.
When you order your Hexr you need to have your head examined… Well, scanned to be precise. Depending on what route you have taken, this is either done in a shop, at their HQ or, as in my case, in the comfort of your own home.
The scanning process.
The actual scanning process is a two person job. I did attempt it on my own, my advice? Don’t bother, you need a helper for a proper scan. And plenty of space for them to walk around you as you sit still. I’d suggest removing pets and small children from the room, they will get in the way!
The scanner is an iPad with the scanner attached to the side. The process is straight forward, you sit on a chair wearing a fetching skull cap, while your helper does all the work. I did wonder how much the fit would be affected by my having a rather bouffant hair do at the time. Once completed, the scan is whisked away to Hexr HQ via the magic of WiFi. So far, so simple.
You’ll receive an email confirming they have the scan and then it’s a matter of waiting while your scan is turned into a helmet. Hexr keep you informed as your helmet progresses through the process and then you get the email telling you it’s on its way.
The Big Day, your helmet arrives
Finally after ordering and scanning, your helmet is here. Delivered to my door by a very friendly delivery man, I whisk it away and tear open the box. Inside is the Hexr box, all matt black and mysterious. A magnetic catch holds the flap in place, a very nice touch. This is a box I’m going to keep, it’s smart looking and robust and will protect the helmet when I’m not wearing it. This also helps with the problem of packaging waste.
So, box aside, what’s the helmet like? It’s an all black affair, so it’ll match any kit. It’ll be interesting to see if they add extra colours and designs as time goes by. The outer skin is removable, a simple catch holds it in place. So that does open the door to future colour changes – changing team? Change the colour of your helmet!
The Polyamide 11 that the helmet is made from has a slightly rough feel to it. I liked the texture, it feels very un-plasticky, more like wood. There’s even some patterning that looks almost like wood grain. My helmet came in at 363g, not super-light, but it doesn’t feel heavy once you’re wearing it. Could this be down to the fact that the weight is spread around my head better?
What’s the fit like?
Of course the big question is; how does it fit? Really well. I actually have to pull it off my head, no casual one handed doffing of this titfer! I can even hang upside down and it stays put.
Inside the helmet are two, thin pads. Each has three triangular sections that extend from the brim to the centre.The padding is made from a knitted, net like fabric; it should breathe well. It’s attached using a snap in feature, so can be removed for washing
The straps are also removable and easy to adjust. Pushing the straps into the helmet exposes a metal pin, remove that and the straps pull out. There’s a nice red patch on the right hand strap, doesn’t do anything, but it looks good! The chin strap has a well thought out plastic loop that stops the excess strap flopping about. Again a small thing, but shows the thought that went into the Hexr.
There’s an optional snap-in ratchet that you can use for added security. I attached mine simply because all my helmets have them. But the fit is so good you don’t need it; I’m just a creature of habit.
Foul weather stops play!
Unfortunately we’ve been experiencing some pretty unpleasant weather recently, so I’ve not had a chance to do anything longer than an hour. The Hexr is comfortable for that length, but I’ll be interested to see how it feels on a longer ride. My current helmet leaves indentations on my forehead after a fifty minute commute. The Hexr passes that test, I’m dent free after an hour.
Also the Polyamide 11 that the Hexr is made from is meant to be better at handling heat, something that is a few months away! Most helmets are made from EPS, which is an insulator; not the best material for strenuous activities in hot weather. Combine that with the airy, hexagonal cell structure and could this be the end to sweaty helmet?
Looks wise the Hexr is very under stated. Where the outer skin has vents, the internal structure shows through. It’s a really nice look. The Hexr three horizontal lines logo appears a few times, but always in an understated way; nice.
I finally managed to get out on some long rides and yes it was comfortable. No un-sightly marks on my forehead, which was nice. And like any helmet, the best thing you could say was that you never noticed it on.
If you head over to the Hexr website you can order extra shells for your helmet. Shells which were designed by TotalSim, who were behind British Cycling’s aerodynamics at the 2008 and 2012 Olympic Games. And for all you aero-weenies out there, it tested seven seconds faster over a 40km time trial than the Giro Aether and Kask Protone. Also on the site is their Track Concept helmet, very fast looking.
So there you go, the Hexr helmet, it has custom fit, environmentally sound construction and innovative materials. Throw in the improved safety performance and I think they have a winner.