Bell Vortex Patriot Helmet
This helmet is awsome.
I was wearing a Bell Pit Boss helmet and got tired of the wind trying to rip my head off at higher speeds. So I did some research on some full face helmets. I didn't want to spend a fortune, but I knew I'd have to fork out some decent cash for a good helmet. The Bell Vortex fit the bill. Tons of features, good looks (I got the matt black), and Snell rated, at an affordable price. I wasn't sure what size I needed, so I emailed Revzilla and gave them my head measurement (22 inches). I got a response the next day with a complete explanation about the sizing and fit. Sure enough, they recommended the small, and it fits perfectly. I didn't realize riding could be so pleasant now that I have a superb helmet. Reading other reviews I noticed the only drawback was it's loud. At first it did seem a bit loud but as I rode it I got used to it and it was no big deal. I did however seal the holes that lead to the rear ear vents with black silicon, and what a huge difference it made. Simple fix. This helmet is well worth the money, top notch quality, and great customer service from Revzilla!
August 17, 2014
Not Too Shabby
The design is what drew me in and with the Snell and DOT approval on top of a good price it seemed like a smart purchase. I usually wear a medium but once I broke this helmet in it became a little too large. My Shoei GT Air is a medium and fits so much more snug than this. At speed when I do head checks it seems like it may slip on me. Air flow is great. The anti fogging lenses work flawlessly. A little louder than I'd like but not overwhelming. I'm constantly getting compliments. It looks pretty awesome. Not a bad helmet but Bell's just don't fit me quite as well as other brands.
August 11, 2014
Bell Vortex Helmet is Amazing!
I love this helmet! It's comfortable. It has great style. The airflow is like no other helmet I have tried. The visor never fogs up. It has Bluetooth capability. It fits well and provides great protection. Its lightweight. If I ever need another helmet I will definitely get a Bell!
August 11, 2014
Awesome helmet, awesome company.
I waited about a year before I gave my review on the Bell Vortex.
The thing that suprised me the most was the quality of the helmet (especially for the price). The inside materials feel very nice against your face (something you don't get with under $200 helmets). This is very important to me and was one reason why I originally wanted to splurge for an Arai. The ventilation is okay (used in 50 and 100 degree weather) but is a bit noisy. However, this can be easily remedied with a little plugging material on the back vent, behind the ear. After the modification, it is perfect. I should note that the easy release visor is an awesome feature.
Also, Bell has great customer service (RevZilla-like quality). I think they'll replace your crashed helmet for a new one for a reduced cost. Plus, I believe its an American based company.
The only thing is that the Vortex looks a bit bulky. My white 2xl makes me look like a Stig bobblehead.
I would not hesitate on purchasing a Bell Vortex.
August 8, 2014
Not bad for the price and great airflow
I purchased this helmet as a replacement for my HJC IS-16.
I mostly like this helmet. First and foremost it fits my intermediate oval head well. I would say it's somewhat less narrow than the selection above, but the sliders only have so many options. The other major plus is airflow. The airflow is so good that the visor had minimal fogging even in the rain. This helmet has the cracked open position which some helmets costing multiples of the Bell do not have. I also appreciate the third forehead vent which works well in a standard or 3/4 riding position.
For the negatives, this helmet is LOUD. It's so loud that earplugs are a must on the highway. With earplugs in, the noise level is comfortable. That said, I'm not sure it's possible to get great airflow and great sound reduction on a sub $200 helmet.
Some other quibbles is the vertical field of view is somewhat narrower than I would like and I wish the Bell logo was a bit more subdued.
Lastly, I purchased the gloss black and it is much more glossy than the picture does it credit. I think I would've gotten the matte black had I known otherwise.
August 4, 2014
Great helmet for the price!
I knew from other reviews that the helmet was going to be loud but I decided to find out for myself before resorting to ear plugs. Sure enough, it's loud. Any time you're going to have as much airflow as this helmet provides, you're going to have increased wind noise. That's something I can accept - and compensate for - with all the other features this helmet offers. Sizing is normal. Fit is comfortable. Vision is good. A bit heavier than my RS-1 but manageable. I like the styling and features. I wish it came with the magnetic chin strap - got spoiled - but using the traditional snap is no big deal. Get yourself some ear plugs and you'll be very happy with this helmet.
July 30, 2014
I bought this as my first helmet and fell in love! It looks so cool & fits great! All my friends love it.
July 29, 2014
Loud beyond belief
This helmet is basically unusable over 40 miles per hour.
I tried the duck tape over the behind-the-ear-vents trick, and while it improved the 30-45 mph noise, at high speeds it does not make a difference. Most of the turbulence at higher speeds seems to be coming from the flat underside of the helmet: I can put my glove on the back of my neck, and the noise cuts off instantly at any speed.
When I ride on the highway, with ear plugs, my ears are still ringing at the end of the trip. When I hit 50 miles per hour on my way to work, the noise is deafening.
Bell should invest in a wind tunnel before building any more helmets.
That said, comfort (ignoring bleeding eardrums), safety, vision, anti-fog, weight, etc. are all good. If you just scoot around town, perhaps this is the best option.
July 26, 2014