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Old Jul 5th 2015, 10:11 AM   #1
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I Ride: 2012 1199s 2014 HP4 2007 zx6r (track)
bell star vs shoei x12

This isn't really a helmet review as i feel the top of the line helmets are almost all the same and lets face it if it doesn't fit right it doesn't matter how good the helmet is.
This is a track day assessment that i experienced and i can't really chose a winner per say because both are so good and both have some disadvantages.

Shoei x12 has been my go to track helmet and the reason is the fit (for me, every one is different so when i refer to fit its for me) is so spot on that it feels like i have a custom helmet. I wear a size medium and there is no adjustment or changing pads or liners. The helmet is tight (thats the way i like it) but not over bearing as i said perfect fit. For a race helmet (i wear ear plugs too) its not loud at all ( once in a while i don't wear plugs and its no problem i misplace the plugs in the car or bag or my track suit pocket and don't feel like redoing gloves and helmet.) . The shield change is simple has a pin lock shield so no fogging. why would i even consider another helmet well simple answer is the shoei is hot. no other reason i guess to be tight somewhat quiet you sacrifice air flow.
finally there is no transition shield for the x12. (doesn't matter i only use transition on the street either with the bell or the shoei rf1200)

bell star (carbon or not same helmet i have both) is probably the helmet i have been buying the most. I've had 5 of them currently have 2. i also have had the bell rs1 more on that later.
so i have always used the bell star for my street helmet. the airflow is amazing you can feel it in the helmet you can HEAR it also even with earplugs.
the reason i used the star as a street helmet is the helmet was always slightly off for me. just a touch so i relegated it to my street summer helmet. in 2012 i had an rs 1 and it fit really good i was going to keep it but a few days later the star went on sale the carbon one so i returned it and got the carbon for basically the same price.
Problem was the fit was about 1/2 size off. The star was bigger than the rs1. i bought a shoei and bell i sold.
bell fixed the sizing matched the rs1 i bought another bell star. the bell fit really good but was not the fit i like with the shoei, however it was really good just not the feel i like but not off by any means no buffeting just shoei was slightly better. the star DOES NOT HAVE PIN LOCK. how they don't i don't know and it does have a fogging problem. I used rain x to coat the inside of the shield. works pretty well but you have to keep doing it every couple of months.
Bell shield change simple comes with a great carry case helmet was actually cool in the heat performed flawlessly. bad parts didn't fit as well as shoei no pin lock although in summer you don't need it and very loud.

closing - if i had to pick a helmet i would pick the shoei because the way it fits me. i can deal with a hot head for the session the fit is what gets it for me. i guess you have to sacrifice something in everything as nothing is going to be perfect.

i was so impressed by the bell i will bring it to my track days depending how hot it gets and i can always switch off.

Oh lastly price you can get a star or star carbon much cheaper than an x 12 (does the x12 ever go on sale the marquez original is what i have and its still up there in price) so if the helmets are equal to you there you go save a few hundred bucks and the bell is the winner. just buy a set of ear plugs.

if you are on the edge of getting a new helmet hope this helped.

no clue why i have 4 helmets and still looking at more someone help.
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Old Jul 5th 2015, 10:47 AM   #2
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When it comes to anything involving helmets Mark is the guy to turn to for advice, reviews, fit and finish, etc.

Nice thread Mark!

Ps. Hey guess what. I actually started my TrI and took it out for a whip yesterday after draining all the nasty old fuel and heading to gas station to fill it up with fresh. What gas stations sell fuel WITHOUT the dam ethanol in it these days and how can Ifind em?

BTW I wore my Bell Star which as you said is the absolute best airflow you can ever imagine -True Summertime lid!
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Old Jul 5th 2015, 10:54 AM   #3
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I Ride: 2013 Panigale White, 2007 CBR600RR, 2017 MV Agusta Dragster RC #108
I also have both an x12 (bostrom b-boz 2) and bell star spirit helmet. I like them both equally but the spirit helmet i got for $250 shipped whereas the x12 was 570 shipped. For the price difference, fitment and everything else isn't enough of a difference to justify the difference in price for the x12. That said, i wouldn't have purchased the x12 if i had the bell star first.

Wish i had neither of them so i could splurge on some of the agv corsa helmets. I just may do so in the near future n ditch both these helmets n stock up on most of the agv.
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Old Jul 5th 2015, 11:59 AM   #4
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I Ride: 1199 Panigale/Triumph Speed Triple R
Had used Shoei for the past 20+ yrs. They just fit better than anything else. A couple years ago I was needing a new helmet and wasn't happy with how much a new Shoei was going to set me back.
An acquaintance suggested I look at an RS-1. Claimed it was quieter, cooler, and (important here in the South in summer) the entire liner could be removed for easy cleaning.
Glad I took the advice. The RS-1 has been better than all the Shoei X-8, X9, X-Tec, etc. that I've had.
Will get a new helmet in the next year or so. Won't hesitate to go straight to the RS-1.
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Old Jul 5th 2015, 02:28 PM   #5
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I Ride: 13 1199S, 02R1, MTS1000S
Funny for me I have the Bell carbon dirt helmet and love the way it fits, yet when I try on the road helmets they feel terrible in my head. Really wanted the Bell but ended up with another Shoei. I wish Arai would drop some weight, I'd go back to them!
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Old Jul 5th 2015, 02:38 PM   #6
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I Ride: 2012 Panigale
Originally Posted by Gunny Fitz View Post
When it comes to anything involving helmets Mark is the guy to turn to for advice, reviews, fit and finish, etc.

Nice thread Mark!

Ps. Hey guess what. I actually started my TrI and took it out for a whip yesterday after draining all the nasty old fuel and heading to gas station to fill it up with fresh. What gas stations sell fuel WITHOUT the dam ethanol in it these days and how can Ifind em?

BTW I wore my Bell Star which as you said is the absolute best airflow you can ever imagine -True Summertime lid!
Ethanol-free gas stations in the U.S. and Canada
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Old Jul 5th 2015, 09:45 PM   #7
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I've had the X12 and now have the Star carbon. I'm not a fan of the Bell at high speeds (like 140+ coming out of a tuck). For me it's not very stable. It's hard to replace it with another X12, though, because the transition lens is amazing and I'm hooked. My X12 was always super stable at the higher speeds. Both helmets are loud and air flow was good for me in both as well.
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Old Jul 7th 2015, 04:21 AM   #8
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I Ride: '15 Panigale 1299S, '15 Triumph 675R, '14 Honda Grom, '13 Aprilia RSV4, '10 Yamaha R6, '06 Yamaha R1
As a disclaimer, i should probably say I am sponsored by Bell.

With that being said, I honestly really like their helmets. In all honesty, I would wear them over the others even if I had to pay for them.

I wore the SHOEI X-11, and X-12, and also tried the Arai Corsair-V. I found the Bells much more comfortable (cushioning wise) on the inside. Like sitting in a plastic chair then climbing in a lazy-boy.

And the ventilation is much better. But of course with better ventilation comes more noise. So they are louder, but I wear earplugs all the time anyway.

The RS-1 is really good also. I have raced in several of those too.
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Old Jul 7th 2015, 05:25 AM   #9
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I Ride: '12 1199, '13 KTM990SMT
Been wearing a Star since they first came out; great ventilation as noted but certainly loud as hell. Wear earplugs so no dealbreaker, but I do wish they'd bring in the neck roll to seal up the bottom under the ears a bit, since that's the main source of the wind noise in mine.

I've been snooping unsuccessfully to see what the new helmet they've got Cam Beaubier in is; looks rather sleek. Guessing the next Star?
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Old Jul 7th 2015, 08:01 AM   #10
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I Ride: 2012 1199s 2014 HP4 2007 zx6r (track)
Originally Posted by Steve B View Post
Been wearing a Star since they first came out; great ventilation as noted but certainly loud as hell. Wear earplugs so no dealbreaker, but I do wish they'd bring in the neck roll to seal up the bottom under the ears a bit, since that's the main source of the wind noise in mine.

I've been snooping unsuccessfully to see what the new helmet they've got Cam Beaubier in is; looks rather sleek. Guessing the next Star?
gunny note that when we see cam in sept. while we are at it garrett wears shoei and josh wears arai and please keep me saying no new helmets. i almost fell off the wagon recently.

Last edited by mark419ny; Jul 7th 2015 at 08:08 AM.
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