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Helmet Or Headset?

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So far i've seen alot of different pilots using both headsets and helmets. Is it just a matter of personal preference?, or is there more benifits of using one rather then the other? Personally I found that the helmet was a little heavy after a few hours of use, so I bought a David Clark headset which was a little lighter and a bit more comfy.

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Mostly personal preference, with a smatter of common sense and convenience.


There's no question that helmets are safer. They'll do a fair job of protecting your noggin in a mishap, and are significantly warmer if you're out of the aircraft whilst running (flying medevac at a scene call for example). I was always smacking my helmet on the door jamb while longlining, and wouldn't dream of doing it with a headset. But if you're touring to hot third world climates, I don't know many guys that bother lugging a helmet all over the place.


The job should be enjoyable, if you feel more secure in a helmet, wear one. If you don't like helmets and prefer flying in a headset...there you go.


I've always found a helmet and visor combo more comfortable than a headset, hat and sunglasses, but I do go with the headset if it's warm.

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As my fellow folically challenged buddy said, do what suits you the best.


I own two David Clarkes and a Gentex helmet. The DCs worked well in an executive/corporate environment, but otherwise even a heavy SPH-4 Gentex is more comfortable on a long day flying a utility helicopter. The helmet will distribute the load over a larger surface as the headset will usually have a pressure point on the top of your head and hard on the ears.


Unless you are going to work for Helijet or their new competition, I would suggest a newer lightweight Gentex or the Peltor series headset. Very comfortable. If you win the lotto, try out the new Bose ANR headset, I think that will be a real winner, Bladestrike and I will be sporting a set soon.


BTW, Bladestrike is not actually folically challenged, he just chooses the look.

I, on the other hand, can't stop the genetics I was born with.



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Personally I always wear my helmet. In my fixed-wing days I wore my David Clark's but the helicopter school I attended had a few SPH-4 helmets for the students to use while training and I have worn a helmet ever since.

I have a Gentex SPH-5 with dark and amber lenses that I like using for heli-skiing and most other general flying. I also have a Gentex HGU-84 that I use if I am going to be doing a lot of longlining. I find the HGU-84 is not as quiet or as comfortable as my SPH-5, but the C of G of the helmet seems to be a bit lower and puts a little less strain on my neck. The shape of the HGU-84 also allows me a little more room while longlining in the A-Star and is easier to get in and out of the bubble window on the Bell's.


On windy days in the Rockies (especially working down in the Crowsnest Pass area) you can judge the severity of the turbulence by how many times your helmet smacks the door post! :D



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