I wore my new Shoei VFX-W helmet for the first time this past Saturday and Sunday. To prep the high-performance motocross-style helmet for snowmobile use, I removed the liner and put a piece of duct tape over each of the six vent holes to help keep my head warmer, and then retrofitted a breath box from another helmet. Before installation I tested the breath box’s fit in other helmets I have at home to try and determine which helmet it came from, but I wasn’t able to figure that out.
Here are my initial impressions of the Shoei VFX-W helmet:
- The size large helmet fits my head well and feels comfortable on my head. Shoei included several different sets of cheek pads and an extra liner, but the “stock” padding works well on my head with a basic balaclava. Pressure is even all around my head.
- The dense cheek pads give a really secure feeling against my face.
- The mystery breath box fits very well and holds securely under the cheek pads. It gives complete face coverage, but it also makes the helmet somewhat of a challenge to get past my forehead when I take it off.
- The Shoei VFX-W cuts through the air pretty well so, for a motocross-style helmet, it’s quiet when looking straight ahead and if I roll my head forward and back, or to the left and right.
- The Maelstrom TC-8 color scheme is really cool, but unfortunately there isn’t much orange color on the back of the helmet for trailing riders to track as my head wobbles through the woods.
In my experience, helmets typically need to be worn a few times to break in and fit well. I’ve had new helmets that initially felt too tight, rode up on my head or didn’t pull far enough down over the crown of my head, but this Shoei was right – right out of the box.