Relatively new in the American snowmobile market, Zoan helmets that I have tried represent excellent value for hard-earned recreational dollars. The Zoan Z933 Runner modular snowmobile helmet was on my head for a lot of my snowmobile miles last winter and it certainly made a positive impression on me.
The DOT-certified Zoan Runner snowmobile helmet is built with contemporary technology and is filled with useful features. The two-part thermoplastic shell has the main section filled with expanded polystyrene (EPS) and a nice plush velour headliner. Eyeglasses slide in and out of the helmet quite easily, making this one of the better helmets for eyeglass wearers. The chin bar is 4 inches tall, but visibility from this snowmobile helmet is still good if you remove the deflector on the top of the chin bar like I did. And because the chin bar is farther from the face than on many other helmets I have tried in recent seasons, the overall fit is more comfortable than many.
Sizes for the Zoan Z933 Runner modular helmet go from XS to 3XL, but they seem to run one size small compared to standard sizing. A size 2XL Runner weighs about 3.75 pounds, which is about average for this type of helmet. One-hand chin bar operation results from an easy-to-use push button on the front. Pulling forward on the chin bar after pushing the button down makes opening the face a piece of cake, and closure of the metal-to-metal latches is quick and positive. Three adjustable vents in the chin bar and one in the crown provide internal airflow. A wide, comfortable chin strap is secured with a sizeable pair of D-rings.
Standard equipment on the Zoan Z933 Runner modular helmet includes an electric shield, a drop-down smoke-tint internal sunshade and a protective cloth bag. The sunshade operates smoothly with an angle-mounted slider on the wearer’s left side, and it’s easy to use on the fly. I’ve seen darker sun shades, but the tint on this one actually works better because it is useful over a wider range of conditions. The flip shield is definitely more substantial than most and includes a two-piece convenience cord. Both the sunshade and flip shield can be changed quickly and easily without tools.
I removed the chin curtain to clear the path for external air exchange, and consequently experienced no fogging problems at all with the Zoan Z933 Runner modular helmet, although with any helmet, I almost always ride with the shield cracked open one notch anyway. The breath deflector is considerably better than most, but it does leak a little at the upper corners. However, I find that if you have good airflow through the front of the helmet, and that is easy to accomplish with the Runner, you really don’t need a breath deflector anyway.
In the end, it’s the bottom line that makes this helmet really amazing. Many helmets with all these features will set you back up to $500 — or more. But the Runner with smoke-themed Hydrogen graphics is priced at $269.95. And that makes the Zoan Z933 Runner modular one heck of a deal for any rider who wants a really fully-featured helmet without taking out a bank loan.
The Zoan Z933 Runner modular helmet is definitely a best buy in my book. The Runner and all the other Zoan helmet models are available from Marshall Distributing through its many authorized dealers across the country.
Cass City, Michigan
Snow Goer is the No. 1 snowmobile magazine, published seven times per year. To subscribe, click here.