Schuberth’s brilliant E1
Schuberth E1 £599.99
Tester Andy Davidson Time tested Five months/6000 miles
What’s good? Schuberth’s new E1 helmet is based on the German company’s C3 Pro flipfront but with a different chinbar, a more off-road suitable liner and a removable peak. Subtle changes, yes, but what a massive difference they make. I’ve covered around 20,000 miles in a C3 Pro and it’s the ideal touring helmet, while the E1 is the ultimate adventure helmet. The new vents work well, allowing plenty of air in through the mouth piece. And the peak slides back when the chinbar goes up, and comes back down into position when it’s returned to the full-face position. The E1, with the peak detached, is proving to be a brilliant helmet for my 90-minute commutes and, with the peak attached, it’s ideal for trail riding.
It’s incredibly comfortable and practical with an internal sun visor and it’s ready to take Schuberth’s Bluetooth communication system. The E1 is an excellent all-rounder.
What’s not? The peak isn’t rigidly fixed so go over 75mph and it vibrates too much. You can see the peak out of your peripheral vision and the constant movement is rather distracting. So for motorway riding I simply detach the peak and pop it in my rucksack. This is an incredibly versatile helmet and you’re getting a lot for your money, but the £600 price tag is a bit steep (it’s £60 cheaper at £539.99 if you opt for plain colours).
Alpinestars Rayburn Riding Shoes £169.99
Tester Simon Relph Time tested Six months/2500 miles
What’s good? When I first saw these boots I felt Alpinestars had got the retro look just right. I ride classic bikes a lot and felt they would be just the job for low-demand summer riding. I’m pleased to say I have not been disappointed. From the outset they have been very comfortable, even with the amount of protection built in, from reinforced toes and heels to anatomical ankle armour on both sides of each boot. Made from very nice supple leather, these boots have aged to give them that lived-in look without running the risk of looking scruffy. I have been wearing them almost every day and found them great for both on and off the bike.
What’s not? I wish the leather loops on the rear of the boots were stitched nearer to the top, this would have made them easier to pull on. Recently I got caught in torrential rain while wearing them and soon had wet feet, but I think most short boots would struggle with that amount of water. So as long as you’re not relying on these as your number one waterproof boots, they are a great all-day option.
Contact www.alpinestars.com Quality ★★★★ ★ Value ★★★★ ★
Nexx XG100 Bolt helmet £199.99
Tester Ped Baker Time tested Two months/500 miles What’s good? It’s certainly individual. In both looks and design the XG is like no other helmet I’ve used before. With studs for a sun peak and a clip-on visor the Nexx XG comes with both, making it versatile and unique. The peak isn’t big enough to catch the wind at motorway speeds but provides excellent protection from a low sun. The lining is plush, removable, washable and, due to the deep chin bar, I feel cosseted and well protected. The XG100 is very well finished, and there are six contemporary colourschemes to choose from.
What’s not? I find it impossible to raise or lower the visor with one hand so any adjustments have to be made while I’m stationary. If you’re a spectacle wearer like me unclipping/ reclipping the visor every time you put on and remove the helmet takes inconvenience to a whole new level − but if you’re sold on the XG100’S unique appearance you might just about find it OK.
Contact www.factoryagencies.co.uk Quality ★★★ ★★ Value ★★★★ ★
Kriega Hydro-3 backpack £89
Tester Michael Guy Time tested 18 months/600 miles
What’s good? Kriega have a well-deserved reputation for producing high-end bike rucksacks and luggage and this Hydro-3 backpack lives up to their standards. It’s a dedicated hydration pack that can hold up to three litres of fluid in its tough bladder. The hose that enables you to drink is easy to use, can be closed off and has an extra outer to improve durability. The bag itself is thick, tough and features a pocket on the back, which is big enough for a spare pair of gloves and some energy bars. It has fully adjustable chest and waist straps, which ensure the bag doesn’t dance around on your back when the going gets rough off-road.
What’s not? In terms of quality and function there is nothing to fault. The only possible issue is that because of the sturdiness, it’s not the lightest hydration pack I’ve used so it’s definitely geared more towards off-road motorcycling than, say, mountain biking. Contact www.kriega.com Quality ★★★★★ Value ★★★★★
Schuberth E1 mixes all the best elements of a touring helmet, with the essentials from a dirt lid
Take a peak Peak can be used both with the visor and without it. It’s easy to remove and attach.
The E1 comes with an internal sun visor which flicks down via a sliding tab. Shields down
New mouth piece allows plenty of air flow and has a removable filter for dusty rides. Breathe easy
Well made hydration pack is ready for offroad action
Visor and peak pop off and on