REVISED : November 10th 2016
3/4 HELMETS ALSO KNOWN AS OPEN FACE HELMETS protect 3/4 of head – namely the ears, neck, eyes and head area. In comparison to a half helmet, open face helmets offer more protection, and with new advances, some 3/4 helmets include modular configurations giving them the feel of a full face helmet. 3/4 helmets and Retro / Vintage – Touring style helmets offer an unobstructed field of vision which enables a good periphery view, and a ‘wind in the face’ experience. Some designs include embedded face shields, which can be attached and removed with options including shields altering between day and night vision.
Here are the top 10 x 3/4 and open face helmet reviews.
1. Shoei RJ Platinum-R Open Face Helmet
The Shoei RJ Platinum-R is a modern take on an iconic helmet design and has created a benchmark in safety technology and design. This helmet has been around since 1985 and continues to maintain its popularity with touring riders and cruiser owners. It has a good build quality with a fiberglass and fiber composite material meeting both DOT and Snell standards. The RJ Platinum-R has maintained the highest standards epitomizing what an open-face helmet should be. The fit has been improved and is now adjustable. A removable and washable interior, enhanced ventilation for airflow. Fine craftsmanship in the Shoei RJ Platinum-R continues to build on previous performance technology and provides an incredibly comfortable fit.
- Lightweight advanced integrated Matrix (AIM+) shell and dual EPS liner
- Snaps for aftermarket shields and a neck outlet
- Integrated Spoiler
- Cheek and Pad Slits for Eyeglasses
- Soft & Comfortable Shock-Absorbent liner
- 3D Comfort liner and absorbent liner with full removable interiors
- Adjustable top intake and rear exhaust vents
- Removable GT visor
- DOT and Snell Standard approved
- Rating 5.0/5
It is difficult to state any disadvantages regarding the Shoei RJ Platinum as it is such a classy and fine crafted helmet.
2. Bell Custom 500 Helmet
Since the beginning in 1954, Bell continues to push forward with their advances in helmet design, technology and performance with the introduction of the Bell Custom 500. This is the original style of helmet that Bell started out with and is one the most popular open face helmets to be worn over the last 3-4 years. The thing that everyone is talking about regarding this helmet is the dramatic changes in its fit. As a result of a serious update to the outer shell with a new style of composite fiberglass, this helmet now contours to the head and sits inches lower than any of its predecessors. The other big advantage of this helmet, Bell is now using 5 different EPS and shell shapes for 6 different sizes of helmets. The padded chin strap with D-ring enclosure and strap keeper to maintain a tight secure fit and a integrated 5 snap pattern is included for aftermarket shields and visors. The Bell Custom 500 helmet comes in matte black, black and white.
- Fitment: 5 shell and EPS liner sizes ensure perfect shaping to head
- Different visor configurations and options
- EPS and outershell combination afford greater protection/stronger material
- Diamond quilted interior
- Composite fiberglass material results in a lighter weighing helmet
- The new headform means the fit more comfortable and profile sits lower.
- Range of colors: Metallics, graphics, custom artists
- DOT standard approved
- Rating 4.6/5
Non removable interiors/liner
3. Shark Raw Helmet
An aggressive looking helmet, this is the Shark Streetfighter Raw 3/4 helmet is designed for style. It has a unique goggle and face mask combination style and could be classified as the street café, urban assault naked bike style helmet.
The face or mouth guard mask is made from polyurethane whilst the shell is polycarb. The goggles are optically correct and provide good protection but can be slightly fussy to adjust compared to a flip-up face shield. Shark helmets come out of France so the head shape is more intermediate neutral to round, not long oval. Fits more of a wider circumference on head. It is lightweight and has 1 big scoop vent on the top. The top vent has a rubberized stopper to prevent rain entering. The side goggle system ties in and sweeps back with clean lines front to back. It is a modular design where the goggles(similar to ski/snow board style) and face mask/mouth guard can be removed. The space between the face and the goggles means that the Shark Raw helmet can be worn with glasses under the goggles.
- The unique design style and aesthetics
- Comfortable natural fiber interior
- Ventilation system and diffusers effective and well placed
- Quick release goggle system (QRGS)
- Double anti-fog andante-scratch visor
- Aerodynamic outer shell
- Rating 4.5 / 5
Graphics can be expensive and although it has a face shield, it is only DOT and Snell approved as an open face helmet.
Less protection and the goggle is fussier to work with and remove, in comparison with a flip up shield.
4. Nolan N43E Trilogy Helmet
This helmet is a cross over design which is modular allowing the rider to customize their ride for their particular needs. As mentioned in No. 1 above, the Nolan N43E Trilogy is the N44 predecessor and in maintaining its popularity, it ranks 3rd on our list. Inclusions start with the clear shield, an integrated sun shield, the peak and a removable chin bar. With a distinctly multi purpose feel, this helmet is able to be configured in severl layouts and can go from full face to open face with several options in between. If you are looking for a helmet that is Bluetooth enabled and has an internal shield, this helmet is a good choice. The redesigned GE Lexan chin bar is EPS lined and accepts the new chin curtain. The latches are made from stainless-steel with the lightweight poly-carbonate shell enhanced by the built-in spoiler for improved stability. The Vision Protection System includes a short dark shield mounted on the inside of the helmet and moving independently from the face shield. As it is as thick as a regular outer shield, the Nolan Trilogy face shield provides good eye protection and can be easily replaced if required.
- Includes a Pinlock anti-fog insert and quick change Pinlock shield which is optically correct – the shield can stay open in the intermediate position, guaranteeing greater comfort in the hot season and offering increased ease in removal and assembly
- Ready for N-Comcommunication system by adding a Bluetooth headset
- Short black peak can be installed in seconds instead of the clear shield
- Fully removable and washable Clima-Comfort liner is antibacterial, anti-fungal and wicking
- Effective top vent with exhaust grid in the rear spoiler; works in conjunction with the air channels along the crown.
- Velour chin-strap padding
- Open face helmets that function like a full face helmet
- Like the N-42, it is a quiet helmet
- Rating 4.4/5
A more expensive helmet and can be slightly weighty with all accessories included.
5. Shoei J Cruise
This is not your average open face helmet, it is a premium choice of helmet mostly suited to the touring oriented rider. The precise fit is a result of Shoei J Cruise inserting different densities of inner padding to create the perfect fit that contours to the head. There are no hot spots with this helmet, just a snug and firm grip- and remember, you want a firm grip in a new helmet as 1/3 of the lining will be reduced through the wear of the helmet. The finishes are excellent and there are no problems with buffeting or noise with this helmet. The reason why this is a quiet smooth ride- Shoei designed and developed this helmet in a wind tunnel. Packed with leading edge features like the smooth operating and distortion free CJ-2 Protect, complete with an industry-first integrated air dam. A retractable internal-built sun protect shield, advanced ventilation and spring loaded base plates combine to do a great job protecting your head, eyes and ears. The optically correct Shoei J Cruise shield and the twin blade eye port gasket all work together to create a comfortable ride, with this equipped with a 3D Max dry liner.
- Multi-piece EPS liner
- Noise reduction design- one of the quietest helmets on the market
- Ventilation performance
- Fully removable interior system
- Internal sun shield
- CJ-2 Protect and QR-N Base Plate
- Rating 5.0/5
A premium price for a premium helmet
6. GMax GM54S Modular Helmet
The GMax GM 54S, similar to the Nolan, is a modular (and 3/4 helmet) with a retractable sun shield, a lightweight small shell design that sits comfortable low on the head. An inner flip shield can be easily lifted or lowered with a lever located on the exterior side of these open face helmets. There is a one hand easy to use chin bar push to open mechanism with chin vents flowing air smoothly upwards across the inside of the shield which prevents fogging. Range of vision is improved dramatically by the large eye port and the distortion free clear single lens shield. An excellent seal on the shield reduces unwanted air and noise. There is an optional read brake light kit with a newly integrated multi-function red L.E.D rear light. There is a lot of good things to say about this GMax helmet and that is why it remains one of the top sellers year after year.
- Shell made out of thermo-plastic alloy
- CoolMax comfort liner and cheek pads moves moisture out and maintains long term comfort. (These are removable and washable).
- Built in speaker poskcets for communication systems
- GMAX D.E.V.S adjustable dual exhaust venting system on the top, side and rear – pulls hot air from mouth and head region maintaining a comfortable inner temperature
- Built in sun visor
- DOT standard approved
- Rating 4.5/5
Part of helmet head space is used for battery for rear L.E.D light.
7. Speed and Strength SS600 Rooke Custom Helmet
If you like serious graphics, the Speed and Strength SS600 delivers in term of the Rooke customs open face helmet model. If graphics is not your thing, it comes in customized looks. The retro shell is made from A.B.S. (Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene), and although it is not made from the super strong composite fiberglass as is the Bell 500, its alloy shell makes it more durable and does better handling daily riding. The head fit is a round to intermediate oval shape which means it will suit a lot of head shapes. As for the Airstrike ventilation, the SS600 Rooke helmet has the unique direct course ventilation which is enhanced with an intake and exhaust vent.
- Custom quilted comfort lining.
- AVS alloy shell – more durable and does better handling daily riding use
- Round to intermediate oval head shape
- Double D, D-ring retention system
- Ventilation benefit of an intake and exhaust vent
- Exceeds DOT approval standards
- Price is 25% less than the Bell 500
- Rating 4.2/5
Alloy shell has less impact absorption
8. AVG Diesel Hi-Jack Helmet
The AGV Diesel helmet is an Italian inspired and designed open face helmet. It is a result of the Italian jeans company Diesel teaming up with the Italian helmet manufacturer AVG to design and build a line of designer helmets. For riders who like their equipment customized, this is a great choice of helmet. Apart from the cool chromatic designs in colors and logos, the aeronautical helicopter pilot looking Hi-Jack helmet has concealable visors in varying tints, and these can be further customized for the riders needs. There is a retractable face shield which comes in smoke and iridium silver versions. The helmet sides have a contemporary curve which further emphasize the pilot design and with 2 shells available, the head shape is for intermediate oval shape. In the AVG Diesel helmet, the sun visor has a 2 position drop down which is UV resistant.
- Shell is made from fiberglass ACF
- Quick release system on the chin strap.
- Inner lining is made from Dri-Lex with anti-bacterial wiking liner. The liner allows some air to flow around the helmet.
- Internal padding is removable and washable
- Visor is an anti-scratch ISV2 and can be arranged in multiple positions with the retractable shield being concealed in to the shell
- There is no need for tools as the visor can be removed and replaced without them
- Retention system is a micro-metric adjustment buckle
- Rating 4.4/5
If you want detailed customization, it can take a while to deliver
9. Nolan N44 Helmet
If you are familiar with the Nolan N43E which was a very popular choice, the Nolan N44 is the next upgraded version improved in style, design and function. It is a fully modular 3/4 helmet which is suited to the needs of experienced motorcyclists who want one versatile helmet through the Summer and Winter months. Made from injected polycarbonate GE Lexan, this helmet which maintains a weight proportionate to the riders size is suitable for both long rides and urban trips. The dimensionally correct sizing allows ample cubic volume in the chin and nose area enhancing protective features whilst maintaining a comfortable balance in weight distribution. The smart ventilation system enables air intake in the chin guard and air intake in the frontal and 2 rear extractors, this moves heat away from the helmet whilst keeping the space cooler in warmer months. In terms of its modules, there are 6 different configurations which can be personalized to suit a riders specific needs. Such flexibility is achieved by a rider can adding or removing the following components: 1. chin bar 2. face shield 3. peak.
Adding the chin bar and face shield results in a open face helmet that functions like a full face helmet. In adding just the peak (small visor) and chin bar, air will flow freely through the helmet whilst maintaining the equivalent protection of a full face helmet. Removing the 3 components totally, will result in the feel and function of a 3/4 open face helmet. There is now a huge field of view in this Nolan 44 which includes a Pinlock lens plus an embedded drop down sun visor which saves you from needed to change shields.
- Ultrawide Pinlock ready faceshield – enabling greater field of vision
- Clear Pinlock faceshield and lens
- Microlock2 (patent pending) double lever retention system
- protective chin guard
- 2 position inner sun visor (VPS)
- 2 Shell sizes
- airbooster air flow system
- central ventilation system
- Polycarbonate outer shell
- Inner comfort padding
- DOT standard approved
- Rating 4.7/5
The pricing of this helmet is in relation to it being a higher standard, multi modular helmet catering for experienced riders
Bell use to dominate the Half Helmet space – but now, there are many other quality motorcycle helmet companies manufacturing great half helmets such as HJC, Scorpion, GMax, Speed and Strength to name a few. We review many brands of quality half helmets which consider the shell to be the […read more…]