What the KLIM KRIOS is like to live with.
Many of you will remember the KLIM KRIOS as the old Uvex helmet shell sold a few years ago. It was a damn great helmet and being manufactured from Carbon fibre made it a light weight affordable alternative to the likes of the more expensive Arai at the time. I got my first Uvex around 2009 and used it through Africa and also had a nasty accident when I went down and my head hit a guard rail at 60mhp. Luckily the helmet did the job and I only sustained a heavy concussion. The Doctor at the time told my wife to get the same helmet as he had never seen such an impact with such a mild head injury.
The old Uvex visor and peak was excellent, the padding and ventilation in the helmet was absolutely first class. What was important to me was the weight of the helmet. Doing 8 hours a day in heat is no fun if you still have to carry a 1.7kg lid on your head. That helmet at the time was something like 1.2kg and it does not sound like much, but try and carry half a kilogram on your head all day long and see how it feels. Weight does matter and less just makes for a nicer, more comfortable and enjoyable ride. The KRIOS now are still under 1.5kg in weight and I think the lightest adventure helmet on the market in that category.
We nursed our old Uvex helmets as the new options just were not appealing to us. We had the Arai XD and for the price the visors and peak was nothing short of shit; they were heavy and just felt expensive for what you got. Then there were the cheap options that, although complied to DOT/ECE standards, did not come over as the type of lid I was willing to trust when hitting the tarmac. Definitely not going to wager my life on a lid that is that cheap.
When we saw KLIM launch the KRIOS and that it looked similar to the UVEX I tried to get information from KLIM on what the story was behind it. I was really excited at the prospect of owning a helmet that I knew performed well. Essentially the shape and mould was the same as they acquired it from the company manufacturing it for Uvex, and another German motorcycle brand. At some stage it was also made for BMW.
What was important to KLIM was that the shell was reinforced and many small new design changes made. What was also important to them was that this helmet was not a brand new design but evolved over time, and most of the issues ironed out with the older brands. Essentially they had a helmet they could offer their customers with a proven history and then added their own research and design to the current version.
We bought two of them when they were launched and got ours in Sept 2016 and have had them now for 9 months and 13000km. Out of the box we received two visors / face shields, one dark and one clear and a Pinlock to use for fogging when riding in rain, and the helmet came with a 5 year guarantee.
The fittings and finish was a definite improvement over the old version and it weighed a few hundred grams more. The reason KLIM gave for this was the thicker, reinforced shell. The KRIOS Karbon is a three-in-one helmet concept; street (face shield, no visor), dual-sport/ADV (face shield, visor), or off-road (no face shield, visor, use goggles). Easy to interchange with the simple quick-release fittings i.e. to remove the visor and face shield. Just simply lock/unlock with a quarter-turn on the outside of the visor. It is a much easier system than many other brands when wanting to quickly clean the face shield.
All the padding and cheek pads are firm and there are no pressure points, and although the helmet fits very snug and tight it still feels very comfortable and we were able to ride our 8 hours a day. I understand there are different head shapes, but I am sure this one will fit the majority of people comfortably. There is also a cheek screen to stop wind entering from the front underside of the helmet, which is great when it is cold.
I am not sure about all this technical talk but I can vouch that it works. KLIM – “Klimatek™ Fabric liner systems utilize adaptive smart foam technology and anti-microbial/bacterial fast-wicking textiles.” I sweat a lot and we have been riding from Mexico to Colombia since we got them, and in all that heat and humidity they never got that greenish ripe smell. We washed them a couple of times and it is easy to remove and refit the padding back into the KRIOS.
One thing about this helmet that we really appreciate is the ventilation. Even in very hot and humid conditions there is alway enough airflow through the helmet. Our screens on the bikes are quite short and effective sitting in clean air. Head buffeting only became noticeable at very high speeds. It was a lot less than our previous adventure helmets we have owned in the past. I guess it has to do with the shape and the large spoiler that goes across the back of the lid and the smaller peak. I would have loved to have the peak a bit longer and wider. The peak is adequate though. Wind noise is at acceptable levels.
We fitted the Sena S20 and a Sena C10 to the other helmet and it was a quick, easy, hassle free installation. In addition we use Alpine Hearing Protection ear plugs and we never have to talk loud or scream to be heard over the intercom system. There are enough spaces and big pockets for the speakers to fit and not press against the ears.
Pinlock is a separate plastic shield insert on the inside of the face shield which alleviates the problem with fogging. We had some issues with the first Pinlock inserts but it turned out the securing pins are adjustable. RTFM – Read The Fucking Manual. Yes I did not, it would have helped. Since then we have ridden at high altitudes in Colombia in cold and wet weather, and in the humidity of the Caribbean and so far the fogging hasn’t been an issue at all. The KRIOS has excellent venting and even better than our old helmets. There is a huge amount of airflow through the chin bar vent and a closable top vent. Even with goggles there is still enough airflow.
Chop chop, the quick release allows for fast removal of the visor.
The LEATT neck braces and the KRIOS seemed to be made for each other. I use the STX ROAD and Elsebie the GPX5.5. Yes, my neck is thicker and more like a log. There is no interference or hinderance between the KRIOS or the LEATT, in fact they allow enough overall free movement. About two weeks ago I had an off on a muddy mountain road in the highlands of Colombia. The combination of the LEATT and KRIOS minimised the whiplash on my head and although I got hammered good in the ribs I had no neck injury or stiffness.
It is clear that KLIM, as with their other products, have put in a considerable amount of research and thought into the KRIOS Karbon. It’s the same with their after-sales, service and quality they offer with their other motorcycle products; this is no different to the KRIOS Karbon helmet. It is a seriously good quality item worth considering when looking into a new adventure/dual-sport helmet.
We met up with Haylee Fields an Aussie artist in Colombia. She and Elsebie decided the white needs a bit of prettying up and so she painted the helmet for Elsebie, watch how she did it! Check more of her stunning art at: http://www.fieldey.com/
We are not sponsored by KLIM