100% Aircraft

100% Aircraft

The Hot Rod Helmet

Words & Still Photos by Drew Rohde | Action Photos by Abner Kingman

I first laid eyes on the 100% Aircraft helmet during an impromptu visit to the SoCal brand’s headquarters. I’ve long held a passion for traditional-styled hot rods and salt flat racers. When I saw that beautiful engine turned gold paint and pinstripes I knew I had to have one. I rotated the helmet, taking in all the beauty and saw the ’82 emblazoned on the back, apparently 100% and I share a birth year. I turned to 100%’s marketing director Sasha Taylor and simply pointed with a nod. I think she understood what I meant, as I had a helmet waiting for me when I got home.

For riders, helmets are often considered the most critical item in representing our personal style and individuality on the bike. Despite their fashionable purpose, helmets also serve an important roll in safety. Above all else they need to keep our brain safe in the event of an unplanned dismount.

100% Aircraft

The Lab

Wanting to offer the safest helmet they could create, 100% worked to incorporate several key safety features into the Aircraft in hopes of keeping its wearer safe. MIPS or Multi-directional Impact Protection System is one of the most common technologies found in helmets these days. The slip-plane liner claims to reduce rotational energy transferred from the ground through the helmet to the brain.

Outside, the helmet’s carbon Kevlar weave is treated to a glossy clear-coat to show off the carefully laid fibers. Inside is a removable and washable liner. The helmet also has removable cheek pads that can be quickly pulled out by first responders in case of an emergency. Air flow is achieved via 25 vents and channels placed strategically throughout the helmet. Large intake vents in the chin bar and above the eye brows and under the visor help direct air into the helmet while several large exhaust vents allow heat to escape.

The Dirt

Weighing in at 1,086 grams, I was immediately impressed with how effortlessly I could move my head around with the helmet on. I’ve put on some helmets that are so light I’m not quite sure how much I trust their ability to handle a face plant at DH bike speeds. The 100% Aircraft never gave me that feeling, but was a welcome change for my aching neck compared to some of the heavier helmets I’ve tested. Even after long back-to-back days in the park I never felt the weight of the helmet was an contributing to any additional fatigue.

The field of view while wearing the helmet is quite impressive. Whether I was mid-corner eyeing up my exit line or skidding down a vertical shoot, the ability to see out of the Aircraft is definitely a highlight.

The helmet is not without flaw however. I would have liked slightly longer cheek pads as I believe they would aid in side to side stability and reduce rotation in the event of a crash. Also, the titanium D-ring and snap button were more difficult to use than other helmets I’ve tested recently. The D-ring loops are not offset very much so looping the chin strap through is a bit trick with gloves on and the button snap to secure the excess strap material is very buried up by your chin and made it tough to snap. Especially if you’ve got a beard.

100% Aircraft

The Wolf’s Last Word

Luckily I’ve not had to test the safety of the Aircraft, but I can vouch for the lid in all other areas of use. Venitlation, comfort and vision are all strengths that only compliment the looks of this stellar helmet. The 100% Aircraft has quickly become my go to DH helmet and always gets me compliments in the lift line. The Kevlar-carbon weave, speed inspired graphics light weight and top-shelf fit deserve props, nicely done 100%. I look forward to wearing this helmet the rest of the season with pride.

Price: $450
Website: Ride100percent.com

We Dig

Damn, it Looks Good
Field of View

We Don’t

D-ring and Button Snap Closure
Short Cheek Pads



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