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Helmet Issues

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I did a search on helmet-related threads, and found a LOT of helpful info on various types of helmets, as well as plenty of opinions on buying new vs. used and why a helmet is important.


So far, I'm planning on buying a Gentex from flightsuits. They're less expensive than an MSA or Alpha, and I can get new parts for them much more easily if I do damage to something. Dealing with a manufacturer in the US is bad enough when it comes to warranty service - I don't really want to invite the migraines that could be brought on by manufacturers in the UK or France. I'm also not a huge fan of MSA based on the ergonomics and user-friendliness of their SCBA systems. :down:


Based on the available sizes, I've ruled out the SPH-4B and the HGU-84 as simply too small for my melon. Here's why.


I've got a big head. Not just big. For those of you that saw "So I Married an Axe Murderer", the kid called Sputnik has got nothing on me. When I was in the army, they had to issue me the largest size of beret, and then I would soak the leather band in hot water in order to stretch it out, and then wear it the whole time that it was drying. I can't wear baseball caps because they're all too small. You get the picture. The upside to this is that if anyone ever gets on my case about it, I can deliver a textbook "liverpool kiss" with enough force to ensure that they will put some lucky plastic surgeon's kids through university. :punk:


That leaves the SPH-5 and the HGU-56, right?


My question is for those guys that have big heads...what's worked for you? What hasn't worked? Some guys have said the SPH-5 is a little bulky - is the HGU-56 any better? Is the Oregon Aero Zetaliner that superior to the Gentex SCL? If I get the ANR and gel seals from FlightSuits, is it still worth getting the Oregon Hush Kit?

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I also have a large head (it's just a containment system for my brain after all...:) and have difficulty finding anything in the way of a good fitting hat. I bought my helmet (an HGU-55) with the bubble wrap package that you're supposed to heat in the oven and fit to your head. Fortunately, my head is massive but very round and the thing fit perfectly right out of the box. I think the shape of your head is probably as important as the overall size when you get to the upper end of the size scale.




P.S. The HGU-55 is not approved as a helicopter helmet by the USFS... not that I give a ####... I love it...

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I suffer from the baseball hat problem as well, For flying I wear a MSA internal visor helmet, unfortunately they are expensive but i find it it very comfortable..I wear ear plugs and as well and have done for years so there isn't much noise coming thru...at the end of the day just try and buy the best you can afford because you only got one head :blink:


Cheers TT

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Unless you're an American you probably won't be able to purchase a helmet from Flight Suits. There is some issue with sales from there to Canadians and they will pass you onto Transaero inc. I tried to order a new HGU 84 last week from flight suits and no go. Ended up ordering from flight helmets.com and saved 200 bucks.


Happy hunting



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This thread is starting to sound like a support group for pilots with oversized pumpkins! I can attest to the troubles Flight Suits has had with Canadians - only the way I see it's Canadians that have had troubles with Flight Suits. I don't argue that they run a first class operation in a lot of respects but their customer service sucks. The first time I sent my HGU 33 in for refurbishment they refused to do the work, tried to sell me an "approved" helicopter helmet, then finally agreed to do the work provided I sent a signed letter saying I was aware there were better helmets available for helicopter use. (This was all to do with a pending lawsuit against them in the US). My arguement was there was nothing saying I couldn't wear a **** football helmet if I wanted! The second time I sent the helmet in for work they returned it with the customs papers filled out wrong and I ended up with a duty bill as if I'd bought a new helmet. When I questioned them at Flight Suits about it I was told, "This is between you and your government up there". Flight Suits: good - yes, arrogant - definitly! If there's another place to shop for Gentex - Horay.

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Well. I sweet-talked my girlfriend into measuring my melon this evening, and it turns out that the SPH-5 is too short for me. The HGU-56 should just fit if I get the extra-large size.


I took a look at the Transaero site, and they don't have much to go on in terms of actual prices/specs available on line...they just repeat what the Gentex site has to say. I'm hoping that if I have to go through them, I can get something other than a military-spec (green with low-impedance electronics) helmet.


I took a look at flighthelmets.com and helicopterhelmet.com, but they don't have anything that'll fit me. I've got just about NO choices if flightsuits won't sell to me. Maybe if I buy the helmet piece by piece, and then send the lot back to them in a box t oget refurbished...

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