Nuovi Caschi da Nolan

May 3 2012

The new Nolan N104 is the latest offering from the Italian manufacturer in the modular helmet genre. Tracing its lineage back to the 1998 introduction of the N100, the latest Nolan first flip-front helmet incorporates everything the company has learned to date about modular helmet design.

Nolan is so chuffed with its new N104 that it considers the helmet to be a reinvention of the modular design. And the company is also quick to point out that it’s 100 percent Italian made, a detail that will no doubt come as a reassurance for those who are put off by the cheap, rebranded Chinese helmets that have flooded the market.

The N104 is available in sizes ranging from the pea-headed XXS to the massive-meloned XXXL. Two shell sizes are used to ensure that the weight and volume of the helmet remains proportionate to a rider’s head size. The shell is made from a lightweight and aerodynamic Lexan polycarbonate and includes a built-in spoiler for improved aerodynamic stability.

Another feature of the shell’s design is its use of a very wide eye port, which is protected by an optically correct visor that can be easily changed by using a simple push-button release mechanism. The standard visor provides UV400 ultraviolet protection and accepts a Pinlock anti-fog insert, which is included with the helmet. Instantly retracted by a button on the lower portion of the helmet, an internal scratch-resistant sunshield is also incorporated into the helmet’s visor system.

Of particular interest to those looking for a flip-up helmet is the N104’s pivoting chin bar. It uses a stainless steel latching system that provides an elliptical motion when the helmet is opened. This action brings the chin bar closer to the helmet to help minimize wind resistance when riding with the N104 in the open position. For additional safety, a slider locks the chin bar open.

Venting the helmet when it’s closed is Nolan’s Airbooster system that channels airflow from the front air intakes to the rear exhaust vents. The vents located in the forehead and chin bar areas of the helmet can be adjusted to customize the amount of air passing through the helmet.

Lining the N104 is a four-piece Clima-Comfort padding system that is both removable and washable. It has moisture wicking properties and is treated with natural silver salt to give it antibacterial and antifungal characteristics. Additional touches to the interior include its eyeglass-friendly design and a neck roll that can be removed during hot weather.

The DOT and ECE-2205 approved helmet uses reflective panels on the neck roll and the chin curtain to improve a rider’s visibility at night. For added convenience, the N104 now uses a smaller and lighter Microlock retention system that literally makes using the velour padded chin strap a snap. Every N104 also comes ready to accept the installation of Nolan’s Ncom B4, an all-in-one BlueTooth helmet communication system.

Retail pricing for the new modular helmet has been set at $449.95 (USD) for helmets with solid-coloured shells, and $499.95 (USD) for the Voyage and Action graphics-based designs.

For more information, including a list of dealers, contact Clary Sports at (819) 424-4545 or visit their website.

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