Review: Triple 8 T8-Racer Downhill Helmet

Welcome to the first edition of our 2012 “Spring Safety Series”! This is where we’ll take a look at various pieces of safety equipment and safety techniques to help make sure you have a long and fruitful season through minimizing unnecessary risks and reckless behavior that could result in serious injury for you or the skaters around you. To kick it off we’re taking a look at one of the newest and hottest full face helmets out there, the Triple 8 T8-Racer Downhill Helmet.

Ever since Triple8 announced the T8-Racer Downhill Helmet I had been dying to try it out. Unlike many other full face helmet options, many of which are bicycle or paragliding helmets repurposed for downhill skateboaring, the T8-Racer has been specifically designed for downhill skateboarding, allowing for a very wide field of vision even while in the deepest of tucks. The biggest drawback: the helmet is kinda small in my experience. The L/XL I wore either left the majority of my chin exposed and the helmet sitting dangerously high on my head (not really on) or I stuffed my chin in and was unable to talk, with my jaw stuffed in there without any room to move. I’ll say it right away: if you have a big head this helmet is most likely not going to work for you, plain and simple. If you don’t however, this thing is purdy sweet.

Available in white or black the T8-Racer comes with a tinted visor that opens and closes with ease (even while wearing gloves thanks to the tabs on the side) and seamlessly blocks wind at high speeds, giving you an oddly quiet zen-like atmosphere to skate in (like many other full-face helmets do). While I personally can’t attest to the helmet’s comfort, other friends that I allowed to wear it said it fit nicely and wasn’t awkwardly heavy to wear, even when casually freeriding. One drawback we heard from Henry our tester though, was that without a hole in the front near your mouth, the visor tended to fog up at times, forcing him to lift the visor a little to clear it, other than that he was quite stoked.

As I said earlier, because the helmet was designed with skating in mind it offers a very wide field of vision, making you feel comfortable holding your tuck nice and tight without feeling like you’re sacrificing eye contact with the road in front of you or peripheral details around you, allowing for added confidence at high speeds.The helmet is also cut a little higher in the back to allow for maximum comfort while you’re in a full tuck, without the helmet digging into the back of your neck at all. The helmet also drops a lof of the added weight of some full-faces by opting for a slimmer back, making it light enough to comfortably freeride with, our tester told us.

Overall the T8-Racer looks like it’s right at the front of the pack along with Predator’s DH-6, which has been on the market for much longer. For a first attempt Triple 8 did a damn good job, anyone in the market for a new full-face DH helmet, especially one that’ll be just as comfortable for freeride as intense downhill the Triple 8 T8-Racer might be the ticket. The average price we’ve seen for the Triple 8 T8-Racer is $299, making it slightly cheaper than some of its biggest competitors.

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