Too pretty to risk crashing in an open face, but don’t want to wear a helmet that makes you look like the Rossi-Fetish Ranger? Right now, there’s not really any other options; you wear a futuristic-looking full-face or you risk squishing your face in a Davida or something similar. Chad Hodge, a recent design graduate, envisions a third way. His Bullitt helmet combines retro bubble visor looks with modern protection.
“The idea for Bullitt Helmets came about when I was looking for a new full face helmet and noticed that almost all modern full face helmets on the market are styled to match a sport bike aesthetic, especially the top helmets available,” Chad told us. “Even though there are so many vintage motorcycles still on the road today, there are no full face helmets that match these bikes, so many of these riders are choosing to wear a modern, vintage styled open face, which aren’t as safe. Bullitt Helmets are designed to have all the features and comforts of a modern helmet but maintaining a pure look from days past. Riders of vintage machines now no longer need to choose between safety and style.”
Questioning the need for a full-face if all you’re planing to do is ride across the Williamsburg bridge to show off your skinny jeans? Data shows that 35 percent of crashes in which a motorcycle helmet is damaged result in a major impact to the chin area.
Chad’s gone further than simply realizing a classic shape in modern materials, he’s also found a way to visually resolve modern function like ventilation and Bluetooth speaker controls with the retro looks. Vents are cleverly disguised as visor snaps while iPod-like speaker controls are concealed within the visor hinge.
The retro proportions are highlighted by extremely nice details. Chrome piping runs around the helmet’s base and defines the visor aperture. A leather tab conceals a magnetic visor snap. The interior is positively luxurious and made from leather and a breathable anti-microbial fabric.
Come to think of it, it’s surprising that something similar isn’t already on the market. Instead of focussing on consumers, modern helmets seem instead focussed on solutions needed for racing. Chad hopes he can drum up enough interest to get the Bullitt prototyped and maybe even find a helmet maker interested in producing it.